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Traveler (9866)
Room & Suite (859)
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Travel safe during COVID-19
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What you can expect during your stay
  • All linens sanitized in high-temperature wash
  • Stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Staff required to regularly wash hands
Updated 07/04/22 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
A note from Hotel Riu Guanacaste
Updated 07/04/22 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.

About

Location
4.0
Cleanliness
4.4
Service
4.2
Value
4.0
The 24h All Inclusive Hotel Riu Guanacaste opens all year round and is located directly on the beautiful, fine-sandy Matapalo beach, in the Playas del Coco region, next to the Riu Palace Costa Rica. The location is ideal because of its proximity to Daniel Oduber Airport LIR (33 km) and Playa del Coco (18km) and invites you to explore the area. The hotel has 701 cosily furnished rooms with free Wi-Fi and offers many amenities. Relax in the Renova Spa, or get fit at the gym or on the tennis courts. 3 outdoor pools, 1 children's pool. For the youngest guests, there is the RiuLand Kids Club (for children from 4 to 7 y.o. & 8 to 12 y.o.) and for adults, day and evening entertainment, as well as the Pacha Discotheque. For lovers of gastronomy, we offer live cooking stations at our main restaurant, various specialty restaurants with Asian and Italian cuisine, gourmet restaurant, Steakhouse, and 5 bars.
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Property amenities
Free parking
Wifi
Pool
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room
Bar / lounge
Beach
Diving
Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly)
Parking
Hot tub
Pool / beach towels
Outdoor pool
Restaurant
Breakfast available
Breakfast buffet
Snack bar
Swimup bar
Poolside bar
Tennis court
Entertainment staff
Evening entertainment
Fishing
Table tennis
Nightclub / DJ
Kids club
Kids' outdoor play equipment
Business Center with Internet Access
Conference facilities
Banquet room
Meeting rooms
Spa
Couples massage
Facial treatments
Foot massage
Full body massage
Head massage
Massage
24-hour security
Baggage storage
Concierge
Currency exchange
Gift shop
Shops
Sun loungers / beach chairs
24-hour front desk
Dry cleaning
Laundry service
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Room features
Air conditioning
Housekeeping
Private balcony
Safe
Minibar
Refrigerator
Flatscreen TV
Room types
Ocean view
Suites
Family rooms
Good to know
HOTEL CLASS
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Hotel links
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ticosimmer wrote a review Aug 17
1 contribution
Nice place, well maintained, I would only point out, that the "a la carte" restaurants should have the option to make reservations, seems odd, to go on vacation, and have to queue in order to enjoy it. Nevertheless, they only allow one round of guests at the restaurant, and it opens at 6:00pm, meaning that you have to be at least 30 before it opens. Once the capacity is full, they will close the restaurant for the rest of the day. Regarding facilities, plenty of beach and pool chairs, nice pools, nice gardens. One last thing, which in fact is out of the hotel control, many people at the beach approach to you, offering hats, souverniers etc.
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Review collected in partnership with riu.com
Date of stay: August 2022
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Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Ravi B. wrote a review May 2021
Las Vegas, Nevada23 contributions31 helpful votes
Hotel's Favorite
Was planning to go to Spain, but Covid restrictions would not allow tourism from the United States at this time. Found this all-inclusive on the beach in the Papagayo Gulf of Costa Rica (not too far from Coco Beach (where Tiger Woods lives)) and near Culebra Bay, where Secrets, Andaz, and the Four Seasons are located. I think because Costa Rica is recovering from Covid lockdowns and restrictions, the hotel was not even at half capacity, which was nice. Not all the a la carte restaurants are open every night, but very helpful and attentive staff, like Supervisor Leiby, were there to make sure we always got a table, to make sure the table was decorated before we arrived, and was accommodating enough to leave a bottle of red wine on the table and replace it as many times as needed throughout the meal. Even the buffet was very comprehensive, with grill stations, and awesome local cuisine. The room lacked little things like hair conditioner or hand lotion bottles, but other than that, everything was top notch. The small pillows were not ideal either, but we managed to sleep well regardless. Each night during dinner, a musician would play in the courtyard, every night following dinner we were treated to a Las Vegas - type show with dancing and music. And following each show, was a solo musician for about an hour. It was a nice was to wind down after a day of fishing, snorkeling, kayaking, paddle-boarding, boating to other beaches, smoking Cuban cigars on the beach, and just chilling with a mixed drink (like a Mono Susio - Dirty Monkey) under a tree on a lounge chair with periodic dips into the warm water of the Pacific (with almost no waves). The price was amazing as well. It was less than $150 for two people, per day, all inclusive, including alcoholic drinks (not just bear and pina coladas). You cannot beat this deal. Costa Rica does require a travel insurance, but we found a company called Trawick, and we were able get insured for $30 per person for the week. This complied with Costa Rica's requirements. The US required us to get a negative Covid antigen test 3 days before coming back, but since we booked this trip through Apple Vacations, the testing was free of charge.
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Date of stay: May 2021
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Sleep Quality
Room Tip: I asked for an ocean view and got it without paying extra.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
9 Helpful votes
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PaulB1978 wrote a review Aug 17
Birmingham, United Kingdom6 contributions3 helpful votes
I read so many reviews about this place and to be honest, I was slightly worried. The issue is that some people are simply bitter, nasty people who write poor reviews because they weren't able to treat everyone like a piece if faeces on their shoe. The hotel is big but everything supports this perfectly. The staff are exceptional and are incredibly positive and attentive. The food is so vast, amazing quality and I have no idea why anyone would review negatively about any of it. I did pay extra for a sea view and yes it's not bang on the beach but it's beautiful enough and the lightning storms at night were cool. The room does seem slightly dated but I'll remove my western expectation and get over myself. Its very comfortable, great air con and a genuine 8.5/10. Costa Rica is expensive as are the trips and transport. It's a strange economy but its just as expensive for Costa Ricans but obviously there are price hikes here and there for tourist hotspots. IF FLYING FROM THE UK, GO DIRECT TO LIBERIA AND ORDER YOUR ESTA IN ADVANCE. We didn't and the inbound journey took 2.5 days due to delays and the transfer is between $260-280each way. The entertainment is high class, the dancing shows very good. There is a sports bar with only 1 American pool table. It might not be here for you as I plan on trying to squeeze it into my luggage-great table. They need a player order list though. Trips are at $150 each mainly so bring some spare cash or pay for the hotel and stay here. The beach is lovely, ideal for a swim, never busy but if you want to surf you'll have to go to Tamerindo which will cost a bomb for a private taxi. I'll be careful about reading poor reviews in future, not everyone is capable of being 100% happy but I'm certain it's no issue with the hotel or staff at Guanacaste. If you want a splurge holiday, stay here and I believe you can use the Palace next door too but there's enough here. If want pure adventure on a budget, all inclusive 5* isn't right for you but I'm sure if you have the cash, Costa Rica will offer everything.
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Date of stay: August 2022Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote
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Lon_Yaeger wrote a review Aug 15
Bandera, Texas39 contributions13 helpful votes
Let's start with the pros: 1. The overall foodservice was good at the main buffet (Arenal) that serves breakfast and dinner and at Papagayo for lunch. 2. The food servers were very friendly and accommodating. 3. Most back-of-the-house staff were very nice and always greeted you with an "hola," "Pura Vida," or "Buenos Dias." 4. The spa was good. 5. The overall layout of the property is nice. 6. The excursions (offered by Amstar) were great and well-coordinated. Now the cons: 1. The rooms reek of mold/mildew and are sorely in need of renovation. Out of the four of us, three got sick with allergies, and that's more than just coincidence. While I realize that it's a tropical, humid location, ownership needs to take this into account in their renovation cycle. 2. The front desk staff were surly, unfriendly, and seemed pretty disengaged. 3. The food in the upscale restaurants was mediocre at best. 4. This property is clearly geared toward a crowd of 45 and younger, and that was not communicated in any of their marketing materials. Lousy entertainment, and loud music into the night is not my idea of a relaxing vacation. Truth in advertising is suspect here. 5. We paid $400 for an "ocean-view" upgrade, but it was no more than an "ocean-glimpse." Very misleading and a blatant ripoff. I would never come back and would not recommend this property at all. The mold/mildew issue poses a serious health risk.
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Date of stay: August 2022
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote
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BrandyMHa79 wrote a review Aug 14
Henderson, Nevada1 contribution
This resort was in a excellent location, with great views of the lush mountains. The resort was very clean, could use some updating but still nice. Good was good. Would definitely recommend or travel again.
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Review collected in partnership with riu.com
Date of stay: August 2022
Value
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Location
Cleanliness
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Christine L wrote a review Aug 14
9 contributions1 helpful vote
The hotel staff were so attentive and couldn't do enough for you. The rooms were clean and spacious, they even had a free mini bar which I had never experienced before. The restaurants were amazing and as a vegetarian, I had so many choices every night. Usually the buffet restaurant is the 'fall back' restaurant. I can honestly say that the buffet restaurant was by far the best buffet restaurant I have every had - the food was fresh and replenished constantly and the choice they offered accommodated every one. Whilst you were choosing food the waiters made sure that you had water and wine which was served at the table. This is the biggest hotel I have ever stayed in and so initially thought that everywhere would be crowded. However this wasn't the case; There were always free sun beds by the pool and beach, the restaurant were large and there were so many bars and options of things to do. We had to unfortunately use the medical centre and the doctor who treated my son was so kind and thorough - the people of Costa Rica are so genuine and kind. The staff at this hotel are amazing. They work so hard all of the time and the cocktails are unbelievable. They not only offer a menu of selections but will make you any cocktail you request - The Expresso Martinis were so good! Cannot fault this hotel and I'm quite particular!
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Date of stay: August 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote
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Daisy L wrote a review Aug 11
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma3 contributions1 helpful vote
+1
Very excellent service 🇨🇷❤️since we arrived our make receptionist was super friendly and explained where everything was. I couldn’t find my wallet in my room and when housekeeping stopped by they assisted me in finding it. Our Bartenders were awesome and gave us great tips for our trip and tours thank you to Miguel and Andre we enjoyed Costa Rica.
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Date of stay: August 2022Trip type: Traveled with friends
Room Tip: For the specific restaurants make sure to like un 30-45 minutes before they open, they also have...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote
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Tina M wrote a review Aug 10
44 contributions6 helpful votes
+1
Family had a great time at the hotel. Has everything we were looking for: pool entertainment, nightly entertainment, excursions etc. Grounds were beautiful and everything was kept clean. Stayed at the RIU in Cabo a few years back and would definitely recommend the RIU brands.
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Date of stay: August 2022Trip type: Traveled with family
Room Tip: Booked jet skis for the teens right on the beach, used the hotel’s photographers for some great...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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STEVE E wrote a review Aug 10
Hereford, United Kingdom12 contributions24 helpful votes
+1
What can I say this place is awesome.Lots of excursions available to see the country’s vast wildlife,volcanoes,culture all from the lads on the beach who are all friendly,reliable,knowledgeable and trustworthy.Tell then what you want,when you want to go and they will organise everything.Lovely walks along beach often greeted you with monkeys and loads of iguanas.They also have a 24hr guarded sanctuary protecting turtle eggs and realise the hatchlings back to the sea most days during breeding season.The hotel itself is great a steak bar,Chinese,Italian and main buffet restaurants are all ok.Tuesday is foam party in the pool day which is great fun
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Date of stay: April 2022Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Room Tip: Take lots of lower value (1 dollar notes) for tipping.Although they won’t pester you for tips...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote
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Carolynkidger wrote a review Aug 10
5 contributions4 helpful votes
Having read mixed reviews we went with an open mind. However, we were not disappointed. From the moment we arrived we knew we had made the right choice. Decorated in a Spanish colonial style there was an ambiance of good vibes and although some have said the decor is dated we didn’t find it so. The staff work very hard and are always busy. We saw several areas being painted from the pool area to inside the hotel. There were several people always maintaining the garden and grounds. The staff in the restaurants were polite cheerful and accommodating with a smile always on their faces. A big shout out to staff in the Liberia restaurant who went above and beyond. We celebrated our Ruby Wedding anniversary and a on arrival to the restaurant a table was decorated with flowers, petals and serviettes. We were made to feel special too, as on arrival there was a message and a plate of fruit waiting in our room on arrival for our anniversary. Hospitality staff in the UK could learn a lot from the hardworking Rui staff. Hygiene was paramount as there were several cleaners discretely sweeping up dropped food from guests and spillages.While we were there we felt honoured to be able join in the celebrations of The Guanacaste bank holiday, which guests were invited to join in. The entertainment was brilliant. It was varied ranging from dancers, musicians, quizzes, dancing lessons at the pool, aqua aerobics and children’s entertainment - you could not fault it. Although, this resort is suitable for families and children we did not feel that this interfered with our relaxation as the site is large enough to find spaces to sunbathe and relax. The beach was a stone throw away and made an enjoyable walk with plenty of wildlife to view, including birds, monkeys and sea creatures. I believe in other parts of Costa Rica the sand is black volcanic but here it is a mixture of yellow and black and the Pacific Ocean was lovely and warm too. One thing I will say is to take dollars as it’s much easy to convert than colones, seeing as prices are quoted in dollars first. I wouldn’t hesitate at recommending this hotel and hope to return one day and I this is not something I would normally do( go to the same place twice) Well done, Rui Guanacaste!!!
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Review collected in partnership with riu.com
Date of stay: July 2022
Value
Rooms
Location
Cleanliness
Service
Sleep Quality
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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PRICE RANGE
$186 - $274 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
LOCATION
Costa RicaProvince of GuanacasteMatapalo
NUMBER OF ROOMS
701
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Frequently Asked Questions about Hotel Riu Guanacaste
Which popular attractions are close to Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Nearby attractions include Playas del coco (3.7 miles), Playa Danta (4.2 miles), and Penca Beach (4.6 miles).
What are some of the property amenities at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include a swimup bar, a pool, and an on-site restaurant.
Which room amenities are available at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Top room amenities include a minibar, air conditioning, and a flat screen TV.
What food & drink options are available at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Guests can enjoy a swimup bar, an on-site restaurant, and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Conveniently located restaurants include Numu Taproom & Bistro By Chef Nicolas Devenelle, Guayoyo Coffee House, and Maracuya Beach Front.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Yes, guests have access to a pool and a fitness center during their stay.
Are any cleaning services offered at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Yes, dry cleaning and laundry service are offered to guests.
Does Hotel Riu Guanacaste offer any business services?
Yes, it conveniently offers a business center, meeting rooms, and a banquet room.
Which languages are spoken by the staff at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
The staff speaks multiple languages, including English and Spanish.
Does Hotel Riu Guanacaste have any great views?
Yes, guests often enjoy the ocean view available here.