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“STAY AWAY!!!!!!” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Luz De Vida

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Hotel Luz De Vida
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Playa Santa Teresa, Santa Teresa 02254, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #23 of 25 Hotels in Santa Teresa
Sebastopol, California
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“STAY AWAY!!!!!!”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

I cannot say enough how horrible the people are who run this place. A bigger bunch of self-centered, self-important, uncaring people have never gone into a service business. If you don't like people, why run a restaurant and bar? We have been coming to costa rica for years an have actually stayed in the hotel before, and it was ok, and have often sat at the bar for drinks and snacks. But the last couple of times we were there we were treated like unwanted criminals. In January we came with our whole family to enjoy the sunset and possibly stay. As we were headed to the office to inquire about rooms we were approached by a cruel-faced "manager" and told very rudely we had to leave because we had a cooler with us. if he had taken a moment to look he would have seen we had a baby, and the cooler was for her milk and snacks. We explained that we were ordering food and drinks and the cooler was for the baby, but he clearly didn't care, told us we should "go to another beach," and walked off in a huff, never so much as apologizing. We are pretty forgiving, so when were in Santa Teresa last night, we decided to go back for drinks. They do have a lovely location, after all. After we had been there for half an hour, and were on our second round, a young woman who identified herself as an owner walked to our table and flat out accused us of not paying a previous bill. When we told her that was simply untrue she got huffy and said the manager (the same beady-eyed guy from before) had sent her over saying we hadn't paid. They had no evidence, because there was none, and seemed eager to be rid of us. We are a pleasant California laid back family who happily spend our money, tip well and ALWAYS pay our bills. To be treated like dirt is simply beyond belief. Really, who would not pay a bill, and then go back to the same place weeks later, with a baby, and start ordering drinks? When we reacted incredulously, as anyone would on being falsely accused, the staff got irate and even more accusatory. It was absolutely surreal, like some bad dream that you wake up from in a cold sweat. Can I give negative stars? I would give TEN negative stars if I could. make your choices, but if you do patronize this place, know you are supporting cold-hearted, uncaring and horrible horrible people. Like I said, STAY AWAY!!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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63 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Encinitas, California
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2012

This review is for Villa S which is on the Luz de Vida property but owned by somebody else. However we booked it through Luz De Vida and had access to all the hotel amenities while we were there. There are 5 houses for rent on the property and from what I could tell all of them are great. I traveled with my husband and brother and we rented the simplest one, Villa S. We couldn't have been happier with our choice. It's a 2 bedroom with a kitchen, nothing fancy but has AC, hot water, is cleaned daily and is nice and quiet at night. The location is amazing, there is one other house in front of it so it's not technically "oceanfront" but there is an empty property next to it so from the master bedroom you see green and then the ocean. Waking up in the morning and seeing the ocean is amazing. The living room is small but who sits in a living room in Costa Rica? The patio with 2 hammocks is fantastic and when we weren't at the beach or exploring that's where we spent our time. The only issue we had was there seemed to be an ant colony living in one of the bedrooms, there were A LOT of ants in the house. But we got used it it in the week we were there.

The beach out front is amazing and you can walk for a couple miles in either direction. If you go to the south bring shoes though as it gets rockier down towards Malpais. We did not encounter any of "the bums and floozys" hanging out ion the beach like was mentioned in a previous review. However even if we did I would not take issue with it, we are guests in their country and the local kids have a right hang out wherever they want.

We did not spend any time on the hotel property and did not see any of the rooms so I cannot comment on those. We did jump in the pool once and it was kind of dirty and older but again, we didn't have much interest in the pool anyway. Overall we could not be happier with our experience in this Villa.

The constant in all the previous reviews seems to be the helpfulness of the front desk which we found to be very accurate. They are incredibly friendly and accommodating. We will definitely be renting a Villa on this property again.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Baltimore, Maryland, United States
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2012

I have stayed here twice, 2005 and 2012. The place has gone totally downhill. The only redeeming qualities are that they replaced the old louver shutters with windows at some point, the outdoor areas(hotel grounds) are kept very clean and the staff are accommodating at least as far as our needs were at the time. The beds are in serious need of replacement. The door locks are questionable. Leaving you to stuff anything valuable in the safe if you can get it all in there. The tree line on the beach used to be for guests of the hotel more or less. Now its just a hang out for every bum and floozy on that beach. All the youngsters who have decided to drop out of life congregate there, every day all day long. So a peaceful day at the beach will have you walking at least 100 meters north unless you want to see them hanging all over each other. So good luck getting a chair or hammock.
One thing I enjoyed in 2005 was waking up, walking to the restaurant on premises, getting a coffee then taking an early swim or relaxing on the beach. The restaurant has now been leased to a group of rude guys from Chicago who open later in the day. So now if ya want a coffee in the morning you have to walk a good bit to find one.
They advertise that it's authentic Italian food. Thats a laugh. All they have is overpriced pizza($14.00 for cheese and sauce), pasta dishes and get this, Imperial for $5.00?
They also just throw their old junk and trash right behind the pizza oven right there on the beach. The toilets at this restaurant are overflowing with used toilet paper and other trash.
Literally piled in the corner next to the toilet. Luz De Vida needs to do something about this. It's still their property I presume. The only thing nice was the bartenders. They were cool guys. The family/owners are jerks.
Anyhow, do yourself a favor and stay elsewhere. There are plenty of places in Santa Teresa now that are cleaner and much much cheaper. Even the hostels are nicer.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2012

Rooms are on the side of the road which makes it noisy and dusty, not clean, old, pool is dirty. Rooms are big enough for a family and the location is perfect, on the beach, nice beach, good smoothies, verrrrry friendly surf instructors for kids, kids loved the place, the pool and the beach, walking distance from some nice restaurants. Just up date the room, clean the pool and it is perfect.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Old Forge, New York
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2012

The people that take care of you on desk go above and beyond to please and accommodate

Room Tip: we loved this place great location everyone there is so nice in taking care of you and pleasant. we...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 8, 2011

We got our own private bungalo with outdoor shower rocking chairs on the deck and a hamock. Even tho it was right in the middle of the resort we still felt quite tucked away. Inside was ac,fridge, tv, a king sized bed and beautiful bathroom.
There's a beautiful pool, restaurant, beach bar and even a pool table and ping pong. The resort runs road to beach so you're right there - perfect for beach time and sunset strolls.
About the crabs and iguanas, they're everywhere in every size. They are not a nuisance, just a really cool feature. And the turtles, we were on a sunset stroll one night and came upon baby green turtles climbing out of their beach nest and heading straight for the water. There were 15-20 of them taking the plunge and we were lucky enough catch it.
Luz de vida was the beach paradise we were looking for.
The staff were friendly and helpful.

  • Stayed May 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2011 via mobile

We stumbled across this place and it was exactly what we needed! We wish we never left our little piece of paradise!

We stayed in our own large cabin that was very clean and had a king size bed. We had our own porch with rocking chairs to relax and watch the lizards. The rooms were clean and the bathroom was clean and spacious, it even had a rainshower faucet! If you lime, there are outdoor showers as well after your time on the beach - which is about a 45 second walk from your door.

Staff was friendly and knowledgeable. They rent surfboards on site and will arrange tours for you.

We were so lucky to see turtles hatching right on their beach!! This place was awesome!!!

  • Stayed May 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Luz De Vida

Address: Playa Santa Teresa, Santa Teresa 02254, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Santa Teresa
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Teresa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We have 8 garden view rooms and 5 pool view bungalows, all of them equipped with a/c, phone, safe and hot water. We also have an international cuisine restaurant, a spa and pool. We have a nice kids area, and a volleyball field. We are a beautiful beachfront resort in a nice piece of paradise. Santa Teresa, Costa Rica. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Resort Luz De Vida
Luz De Vida Hotel
Hotel Luz De Vida Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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