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“lovely relaxed place on the beach, perfect for families”

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Fenix Hotel - On The Beach
Ranked #4 of 16 Hotels in Playa Samara
Certificate of Excellence
Lafayette, Colorado
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“lovely relaxed place on the beach, perfect for families”
Reviewed January 12, 2014

We stayed 4 nights at Hotel Fenix with our two-year-old. My parents stayed two nights in the adjoining room before heading back to the US a little before us. The rooms have high ceilings, ceiling fans, screened windows (no A/C). They are equipped with a basic kitchen for simple meal preparation. We could see the ocean and lovely grove of palm trees from our rooms. We took our tables out to the patio in front of the room and ate outside, where we could best enjoy the views. This is not a fancy place, but it is incredibly serene and relaxing and the very best views. The maid came and cleaned each day. Our hostess, Phyllis, was lovely. She is a native of Seattle, WA, and made us feel very comfortable. She walked by the rooms many times each day to talk to her guests and answer questions. She fixed our son up with a big crate of sand toys.

We felt like this was a good place to stay with children, just so calm and low-key and great to be right on the beach. We saw several other kids here, as well as single couples.

There is a convenience store very close by (about 100 feet from the hotel). Being able to cook our own breakfasts and lunches saved money and just made us feel more at home and relaxed. Really helps with kids, too, who get the munchies at odd times.

Note: The beach directly in front of the hotel is a little rocky/coral pieces that are sharp to step on. If you walk a little south or a little north, there are fewer rocks.

DO bring bug spray for the beach and maybe some "After Bug Bite" spray. The bug bites are a very minor inconvenience, so don't worry about them, but helps to be prepared.

The walk along the beach into town and restaurants is lovely, but best to get a taxi home if after dark, since the beach is not lit. A taxi back to the hotel costs $2-4.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Jessica R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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502 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (113)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed January 7, 2014

I just came back to Samara and was walking my dog along the beach and walked past Hotel Fenix. I was reminded of how it has one of the most enviable locations on the beach. When the tide is in it's literally a seashell's throw from the water's edge. Now add to this a delightful swimming pool, hammocks beach chairs ringed by palm trees, an attentive host (Phyllis the owner) and you know why it is so popular. Again I thoroughly recommmend Hotel Fenix!

Room Tip: They are all good!
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank NickStClair
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Red Deer, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed January 2, 2014

This is our family's third year staying at Hotel Fenix. We love it here, it is the most relaxing and friendly place and are so happy we discovered it years ago. The owners, Phyllis and Bill, along with their wonderful staff work hard to keep the place maintained and amazingly beautiful. You could literally drink out of the pool its kept so clean! The rooms are well equipped with stove, fridge, cooking implements, and there is also a great barbecue steps away on the edge of the beach. The bedroom fan keeps things at a perfect temperature at night as the rooms are in the back and bring in cool air at night. A short walk down the street is a very well-stocked mini-mart with pretty much everything you need, food and otherwise. Most days around noon, Phyllis and Bill's grandson Derek shows up to sell home-baked goods such as croissants and cinnamon buns that are still warm from the oven! A huge bonus. On the beach next door freshly caught fish can be purchased from the local fishermen. Twice a week a vegetable truck shows up with locally grown produce sold by the farmer himself.The walk to town is a perfect distance. We are far enough away from things that it is peaceful at night, but close enough that going into town is not inconvenient. The sunsets we enjoy from the front door of our room are so beautiful, photos just don't do any of them justice. The night sky is like a planetarium. The beach is clean and natural, the water is clean, and the waves are just the right size to play in.
I guess the best thing about this place are the people. Last year Bill again went above and beyond the call of duty(the year before was a last minute ride to town for fireworks) when the airport lost our most important bag (with Xmas presents in it). I called several times from the office but all I got was "oh, it will probably turn up tomorrow, call again tomorrow" so Bill took pity on me and called the airport. After some firm words in Spanish from Bill, the airport dropped the bag off less than 2 hours later. The airport is about 2 hours away, so thank you Bill. Without your help Christmas morning would have been a real downer, especially for the kids. And Phyllis works tirelessly to take care of us. Thank you for the Christmas cookies, and for taking my stuff that i leave out on the deck back to the office for me! New Years is a big deal around here and that is when they pull out all the stops. A huge bonfire, the size of a car, is built for us on the beach and we all sit around it to bring in the new year. I can't say enough about this place, if you need a place to escape to and unwind completely in a spectacular natural setting, this is the place. Thanks again for everything Phyllis and Bill!

Room Tip: The rooms are all great, but if you really think you need A/C, which you don't, room 6 has A/C
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Keith W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glen Ellyn, Illinois
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed December 8, 2013

We had no idea what to expect when we arrived at Fenix Hotel. What we experienced was 100% friendliness and a complete desire to make our stay one that would not be forgotten. It will not be. Phyllis and Bill were just wonderful. How wonderful? We arrived on 11/27, knowing this was not going to be a typical Thanksgiving for our family. They invited us to their Thanksgiving by the beach. Our daughters loved the beach, pool and we spent many hours by both. The town is close by---very walkable---and if you have a chance to walk there at night when the tide is low, you will not believe the stargazing. Be sure and down load the app to have an idea about which stars you are viewing. Thank you Phyllis and Bill...we will be back!

Room Tip: If you can get rooms 4 or 5, they have a great view of the beach. If not, you will still be very hap...
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Mark R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
2 reviews
Reviewed December 5, 2013

My friend and I took a girls roadtrip thru Costa Rica back in August and one of our stops found us in Playa Samara. The Fenix is definitely out of the way, but in a way that feels good and just right. The rooms all are just a few yards from the beach, are spacious with a kitchen, and with the grounds having what feels like a private beach, swaying hammocks amongst the trees, and a stocked pantry you never have to leave this little slice of beach paradise if you don't want. But, if you do, the walk to town along the beach is beautiful and while at night feels a little unsettling for a city girl used to bright lights, the sights of the stars and the occasional passerby on horseback is a welcomed escape. Phyllis + Bill greeted us like family and treated us like family the whole time. After a night that lasted into the morning and a long drive ahead of us back to San Jose, Phyllis felt like a caring family member advising us best roads to take and even tempting us to stay another night, which if we hadn't had a flight to catch would have happily done so. Thank you for sharing your paradise with us!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank axterix7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nuevo Arenal, Costa Rica
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed December 3, 2013

Spent a week at the Fenix and was very impressed with the room and the beach. Very nicely done equipped rooms right on the beach. The weather was hot so the pool was very refreshing on the hot afternoons. The3 owners were very nice and made me feel at home. I would advise this hotel to any of my friends.

Room Tip: If you are there for any length of time, a fully equipped room with stove and fridge will make life...
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank James M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 27, 2013

We spent 3 nights at the Fenix Hotel after visiting Arenal and Monteverde. Honestly, it was just what we needed to end our trip. Clean, easy and friendly. The hotel is right on the beach and if you don't want the ocean the pool is there as well (was very clean). Every interaction we had with the staff was awesome, the Costa Rica people are so friendly! We were able to wash our clothes too! They keep their bodega stocked with cold beer, pop, water - just grab and pay later (honour system). One last thing, the owners nephew came by every day with AMAZING baking from him mom! We totally pigged out, she is an amazing baker. Oh wait, I forgot the pipas! They were cutting down coconuts and brought us pipas every day! Good people. :)

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Rebecca C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fenix Hotel - On The Beach

Property: Fenix Hotel - On The Beach
Address: Mts Sur de Pulperia Stephanie 100 | Samara de Nicoya, Playa Samara 50205, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Playa Samara
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Samara
#2 Family Hotel in Playa Samara
#3 Romantic Hotel in Playa Samara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Six time winner of the Traveller's Choice Award for 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, and 2009! Thank you to all of our wonderful guests. We are a small (6 rooms), beach-front hotel just footsteps from the ocean. Our rooms are clean, colorful and comfortable. We are NOT an all-inclusive, luxury resort. More like your place at the beach, but with someone else doing the daily cleaning, changing the linens and yard work. The rooms are in a semi-circle and face the pool, gardens and the ocean. (see photos) Great way to meet new people and exchange information and stories. We have been here 17 years managing our "little piece of paradise". Our front yard is sand with ranchos and palm trees for plenty of shade. Hammocks, sunbeds, small pool, gardens and BBQ complete our front yard. All of our rooms have fully equipped kitchens with separate bedroom. The deluxe room has AC & widescreen TV. Standard rooms have upper and lower screened windows and two ceiling fans. Our neighborhood has a small grocery store & fish market, along with local deliveries of fruits and fresh ceviche. An enjoyable 15 minute walk to Samara Central. Most of our guests return or have been recommend by friends. Thank you for considering our special place by the sea. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fenix Hotel Playa Samara

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