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“Perfect setting for exotic relaxation” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Alma del Pacifico Beach Hotel & Spa

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Alma del Pacifico Beach Hotel & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Playa Esterillos Este | Near Manuel Antonio, Esterillos Este 10-6300, Costa Rica (Formerly Xandari by the Pacific)   |  
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$50 Dining Credit
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Esterillos Este
Certificate of Excellence
lapa-citrus
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Perfect setting for exotic relaxation”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2009

We were looking for a resort to experience Costa Rica without the hustle/bustle of traveling around the country and we found it at Xandari by the Pacific.   This small, intimate resort provides an absolutely beautiful, quiet, secluded spot to unwind, relax, and reconnect.   As we had planned to spend the majority of our time at the resort we did not rent a car but instead opted for the resort to arrange transportion from the airport (2-1/4 hours) ($$$).   We stayed in a Beachfront Maxima Villa for our 7-night stay and did not regret paying the extra dollars.  It provided exactly what we were looking for: clean, spacious and comfortable accomodations; privacy; an unforgettable view.  The private plunge pool was great! It provided the perfect spot to cool off, relax and watch the perpetual motion of the ocean during the day and the star-filled sky at night. As mentioned in previous reviews, there are no curtains/blinds on any of the windows. We loved the openess/oneness with the natural surroundings. The shower may be a little intimidating for some at first but it is a beautiful, private setting to refresh! The comfortable king-sized bed is adorned daily with different "towel critters" and fresh flowers. The resort grounds and exotic gardens that surround the pool areas and individual villas are stunning and meticulously maintained.  The daily visits of a scarlet macaw to a tree in front of our villa was always a highlight. The wide, uncrowded beach is just a few level steps from the villa and provides endless miles to walk, search for sand dollars and shells, and watch the beautiful sunsets.  The ocean currents can be strong so the resort provides times for low/high tides and the safest time to swim. We had all of our meals at the resort's restaurant and never had anything we didn't like. A complimentary light breakfast is provided. A more hearty breakfast can be purcheased ($). The lunch/dinner menu isn't large but is quite adequate. Fresh-caught fish is provided daily. Prices for lunch are under $10 and for dinner $10-20 on average (plus an almost 13.5% sales tax and 10% service tax!). The wait staff was great and all spoke adequate/very good English. The resort can arrange day trips to a variety of parks/activities in the area if you so choose. We did a private guided tour of Manuel Antonio Park ($$$) hoping to get a more personal/up-close experience. Unfortunately, this is a very popular and busy park (about 1 hour from the resort). The crowded trails sometimes diminished the experience but the park did provide an opportunity to observe sloths, monkeys, iguanas, tucans and other birds in their natural surroundings. Our best time, though, was our time spent at Xandari by the Pacific. Highly recommended for those looking for a romantic, relaxing, quiet vacation.

  • Liked — Spacious villa, plunge pool, privacy, the beach, the gardens
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 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.
xandaripacific, Hotel manager at Alma del Pacifico Beach Hotel & Spa, responded to this review, February 24, 2009
Dear guests,
thank you for your wonderful review of our hotel. We just want to make sure that everyone else knows that every beachfront villa absolutely has curtains for privacy. The curtains are located outside on the room's beachfront terrace to include the spaciousness of the terrace in your privacy.
All villas that have east or west facing windows have blinds for sun blockage.
Thank you!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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275 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (84)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level Contributor
28 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2009

Xandari is a good choice for couples who want to be on the beach. The location in Playa Estrillos is south of Jaco and before Manual Antonio. If you are driving, there are signs that point you there. The resort itself is not big. The property is beautifully landscaped and quite contained. The resort is painted bright colors and each room is its own building within a walled area. This can be quite private, but also make you feel closed in. We stayed in a garden room which had a nice porch, a dining table on the side and an outside shower which looked as if it was an extension of the inside shower. The rooms are large with plenty of room to move about. The bathrooms are quite nice with the large shower.

There are plenty of places on the resort to catch some sun, including the grounds in front of the beach. The beach is black sand and is large. You can walk for miles in either direction. When we were there, we rarely saw other guests. The food was good but not outstanding and priced for a luxury resort.

If you have your own car, it is possible to go out to other places for dinner. One night we went to a bar down the street which seemed to have a lot of expatriates. The breakfast bar is mediocre and doesn't have much selection.

Xandari is a nice resort that is in fact on the beach, unlike many of the places on the coast which are up on hills. I would not suggest Xandari for a week-long stay as you are likely to feel too secluded. Its a good stop for a few days at the beach without the crowds of Jaco or Manual Antonio. The resort does offer daily excursions for a fee.

  • Liked — Beach location
  • Disliked — Cost
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
33 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2009

This was my second trip to Xandari Pacific, again I loved everything this amazing hotel has to offer. I used the hotel package 3 days in the Central Valley and 4 days on the beach.
It was just as fantastic as my first trip in December 2007. We had a garden room, every detail of the room and surrounding area is perfect. We had all our meals at the hotel restaurant, the staff is amazing especially Freddy, the food was delicious.
We met interesting people for all over the world. Make sure you book a few spa treatments, the rooms are beautiful and the service is excellent.

We relaxed for four days, but if you want activiites they are endless, we decided to sit under the palm trees and watch the macaws returning home between 4-5PM. Their they were feasting on nuts not 30 feet from our lounge chairs, how wonderful is that....

I highly recommend both Xandari Hotels, especially if you want first class serivce.

I highly recommend the Xandari Pacific for all travelers.

  • Liked — The Zen feeling.
  • Disliked — Loved everything
  • Stayed January 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 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.
Manchester, England
Level Contributor
47 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2009

We stayed for 7 nights in January 2009 in a Garden Villa. We had a fantastic week and would highly recommend it.

The villa was very spacious and was set amongst beautiful gardens. The Garden Villas don't have an ocean view but there is so much space available on the beachfront of the hotel that it is of no consequence. Some days it felt like we were the only people on the beach - it may as well have been private. There are plenty of sun loungers and lots of space at both the beach and pool areas.

The restaurant serves great food and the staff were excellent - very friendly without over-doing it. We ate there most evenings. Prices are probably a little more than in nearby towns but the setting is fantastic and it's good quality.

They also bring cocktails direct to your sun lounger.

The hotel is in a quiet location, there isn't much within walking distance so either enjoy relaxing, rent a car, or you can take trips direct from the hotel but you'll pay a premium for the taxi fare.

The only small downside was the slightly surly reception staff.

Loved the geckos that hang out on the exterior hotel walls at night...and the scarlet macaws that occasionally fly overhead during the day.

  • Liked — Wonderful beach location
  • Disliked — Reception Staff
  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
62 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2009

We visited Xandari – Pacific during Christmas 2008 for 4 nights. Because the hotel had full occupancy during our visit, we stayed at a Garden Villa for 3 nights and a Beachfront Prima Villa for 1 night. We enjoyed both accommodations very much – the Garden Villa has no ocean view but that was not an issue for us. The service at the hotel was exceptional. There were special touches for guests everywhere: a small gift for our 6 year old for Christmas, complementary fruit smoothies after spa treatments, complementary hors d'oeuvres before dinner every night. The food at the restaurant was excellent, except for the Christmas dinner buffet – during which the food choices were very limited. The staff at the restaurant was very friendly and engaging. My daughter enjoyed the nice pools and the beach immensely. The location of the hotel is halfway between Quepos and Jaco. You will need a car to move around or visit sites on your own; otherwise you will have to use hotel transportation or excursions. Since we had our own car, we found the location to be perfect for exploring the central Pacific coast of Costa Rica. In all, this was a very nice hotel operating at a high level of service (unlike its sister property in Alajuela).

  • Liked — Large, comfortable rooms with a very nice shower
  • Disliked — Our Garden Villa was next to parking lot.
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Ko Samui, Thailand
Level Contributor
143 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 117 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 13, 2008

My wife & i spent a long weekend at Xandari & loved it. The food at breakfast, lunch & dinner is 1st class, the staff are so friendly & exceptionally well trained, the beach is desolate & romantic, great to run on in the morning. The rooms are huge & with superb beach views, i loved the bathrooms & the showers & best of all no, TV, no blackberry just quiet down time.

If you expect a noisy active resort, Xandari is not for you, if you love quiet,beauty,great service, comfort then i highly recommend Xandari.

You need a rental car, Jaco is not too far away & be careful on the drive over from San Jose the winding mountain road is a challenge especially in the rain.

  • Liked — Location, beach view,great service
  • Disliked — Pool is a little small
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, DC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2008

NO Curtains!!!!! If you want to sleep in, don't go here. Otherwise, it is a great place. I agree with all of the reviews except the one guy complaining about reservation hassles. It is very remote, so I recommend that you have a car if you want to do anything away from the hotel. Jaco is good for some quick souvenir shopping, and not much else. My wife and I walked 3+ miles north on the beach and stumbled upon the Low Tide Lounge. A cool place to hang out, have a couple of cerevezas, and watch the surfers in 4-6+ surf. All in all a great place, and it bumps up to 5 stars if they could just darken the rooms so you don't wake up at 5:30am.

  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Alma del Pacifico Beach Hotel & Spa

Address: Playa Esterillos Este | Near Manuel Antonio, Esterillos Este 10-6300, Costa Rica (Formerly Xandari by the Pacific)
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Esterillos Este
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Esterillos Este
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Alma del Pacifico Beach Hotel & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Perfectly situated on Costa Rica's Pacific Coast along Playa Esterillos Este, between Jaco Beach and Manuel Antonio, Alma del Pacifico is a luxury Costa Rica hotel featuring beachfront Caribbean hotel rooms and suites, a three-meal restaurant, full-service spa and a variety of exciting vacation activities. With distinct architecture and art, an extensive array of amenities and superb personal service, Alma del Pacifico Hotel is the premier luxury hotel in Costa Rica. A great alternative for luxury travelers wanting to visit Manuel Antonio while being on the beach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Xandari By The Pacific Hotel
Xandari By The Pacific Resort
Alma Del Pacifico Beach Hotel & Spa Costa Rica/Esterillos Este

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