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“Excellent venue. Great staff! Beware of their driver, Olman”
Review of Casa Cook

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Casa Cook
Certificate of Excellence
New York City, New York
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Excellent venue. Great staff! Beware of their driver, Olman”
Reviewed May 28, 2011

This venue has nice rooms, great location, and a great staff. The staff is extremely helpful and nice and went above and beyond to ensure our stay was pleasant. The owner is a sweet older lady named Ruthann. The rooms were nice and clean and we had prompt made service everyday. Our front yard was basically the ocean. I did a bunch of research and read so many horror stories, that i was a little afraid to come to costa rica, but read nothing but good reviews about this place. Every good thing that everyone said was 100% correct. My only complaint is that the beds could be a little more comfortable, but i can live. Their driver, Olman, took us out on a tour. He was ok for the most part, but we noticed that he was dishonest and told us some lies because he wanted a bigger tip. I would opt to go With a different person next time. When scheduling tours, massages, etc, it may he cheaper to go straight to the tour or event that is being scheduled. We noticed commission or referral bonuses were given to the concierge in some instances. Overall, we had a great time. Just remember, in resaurants, 10% gratuity is always included. We noticed some resaurants were trying to trick us and lumped everything under tax. Sorry, but Tax is only 13%, not 23%.

Room Tip: Get a cabina, we enkoyed it
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
6 Thank Joojyfruit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (41)
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English first
North Carolina
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed May 11, 2011

First time to Costa Rica, traveling with our 14 and 15 year old for spring break. We had decide we wanted to stay in or near Tamarindo. Didnt know where to stay. All the places sound great on the internet and the pictures look good. We chose Casa Cook based on the excellent reviews at trip advisor and after a phone call to Marie at Casa Cook. We made a perfect choice. Stayed in a cabina on the beach, one kid on the futon, second on a mattress on the floor at night. Plenty of room for us and our kids. After driving around and looking at some of the other places we had considered staying, I cringed at the thought of us being in some of those places for a week. Casa Cook has excellent service, beautiful rooms and we could look out the window through the palms and see the ocean. Very short walk to town along the beach, and the staff is incredibly friendly and helpful. Monkeys in the trees one day. I will definitely book again. All the prior glowing reviews of Casa Cook were accurate and we were very satisfied staying there.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank JSW3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Larchmont, New York
Level 6 Contributor
106 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2011

My husband warned me that telling too many people about Casa Cook would make it harder for us to book this amazing place in the future. I know he is right, but I have to write this to acknowledge how wonderful, perfect and incredible our stay was. We were there for 10 days, from April 16th until April 26th. We had originally considered touring the entire country, and only staying at Casa Cook for a few days. But after a long winter in New York, and a busy year at work, we decided that 10 days at the beach, just doing some day trips and getting R&R was the way to go. That was the right decision, and Casa Cook was the best choice!
Let me start by saying that this is a small property. We stayed in the Casita, which is the downstairs of the main house. There is also an apartment and two Cabinas. I didn't get to see how big they are, but the Casita was the perfect size for four adults, or possibly six, if you have small children. I would not advise six adults in the Casita, as it is not huge, and the sleeping accomodation for those not in the master bedroom are futons in the livingroom. It was perfect for my two teenagers. The Casita walls are typical Central American construction, where they only go up 3/4 of the way, for airflow. This allows for great circulation, but not a lot of privacy. It wasn't an issue, but just something you should be aware of. The air conditioning is excellent- we were comfortable the entire time. The place is immaculate, and the housekeeping comes everyday, and does an outstanding job- including washing your dirty dishes. The kitchen is perfect for vacation- exactly what you need, no more, no less. The water pressure in the showers is great, but the toilet is not the best- you need to flush it- A LOT! That, and the bed is my only minor complaint. My husband has a really bad back, and the bed was not the best for it. No box spring, and really hard. You get used to it after a few days, but those first nights of sleep are a bit tough. Besides that, however, the Casita is a wonderful accomodation, and we thought it was perfect for the four of us.
The location of Casa Cook is the best in all of Tamarindo. It is situated almost at the end of the beach. It is very private, quiet and peaceful. It is still close enough to everything in Tamarindo to walk, but far enough away from the town to not be disturbed if it is very busy- and boy did that help us during Samana Santa. We did not realize when we booked over Easter, that it is the BUSIEST time of year to be in Tamarindo. Samana Santa is the period between Holy Thursday and Easter when the entire country of Costa Rica has off, and everyone heads to the beach. Tamarindo was a zoo, especially on Holy Thursday and Good Friday (much had died down by Saturday). If we had not been at Casa Cook, it might have really made our stay terrible. But because of how private Casa Cook is, and because of the wonderful folks there, it was no trouble at all. The beach on our end did get a bit crowded, but nothing compared to the beaches of the places closer to town, like the Diria. Also, because Casa Cook takes their own chairs from the pool, out to the beach, there was never a problem having a lounge chair and a table to put your things on. They even bring hammocks out to the beach for you, if you like. Marie was there to tell us to stock up on alcohol, as there is no alcohol sold on Holy Thursday or Good Friday. Marie also made sure we had dinner reservation during the most crowded of days, so no issues there. If the beach became too crowded, you could always go back inside to the lovely, clean and refreshing pool in the courtyard, where there was total privacy. All in all, because of our choice to stay at Casa Cook, Samana Santa was no problem.
A few things to know about Tamarindo. It is a wonderful place with a special kind of vibe. It is not a luxury resort town, but more like a young, hip, surfer town. It is not cheap, although there are plenty of good cheap eats for those on a budget. The prices at the better restaurants were as much as those that I experience in Manhattan. I guess I am a bit spoiled living in New York, because we were a bit disappointed with some of the restaurants- but there were some standouts. Langosta Beach Club- just a few hundred feet from Casa Cook was exceptional. It was, by far, our most expensive meal in Tamarindo, but worth every penny. Gil's Place-FANTASTIC Mexican food, very cheap- dinner for 4 people for under $50 dollars, PLUS GIL, who is just a hilarious, warm, great guy, and a fellow New Yorker! Longboards (Hi Mark Brown!)- excellent, inexpensive BBQ Try their chicken! The best in Tamarindo!. Taco Stop- really great, fresh Mexican food, super cheap! Mondo Falafel was also fantastc and very unexpected! Pizza La Baoula was as good as any brick oven gormet pizza in Manhattan, and such a great place to eat. Very pretty setting. Notice the theme- with the exception of Langosta Beach Club, the best food was the cheap eats. We were disappointed with many of the higher option places.
I also need to acknowledge what special people work at Casa Cook. I have mentioned Marie. She is AMAZING, WONDERFUL and BEAUTIFUL! She is like a long lost friend on vacation. From the first time that I inquired about a stay, until the day that we left, she handled everything! She is really the heart of Casa Cook, and she is the person who makes every part of your stay magical. Thanks for everything, Marie. We love you, and everytime I wear my necklace, I think of you...necklace twin! Antonio is a gem! He was the first person who we met when we got there, and he couldn't do enough for us. He basically takes care of everything on the grounds, he brings your chairs out to the beach, and he is always looking for monkeys, iguanas and other animals to show you and the kids. He is a wonderful, special human being, and very proud to tell you that he has been with Casa Cook for 16 years. After you meet Antonio, you'll understand why. When Antonio is not there, Ignacio is, and he is also a wonderful man. He does not speak English, but he had fun teaching me Spanish, and I had fun learning. I was also THRILLED that I got to meet Ruth Ann, the owner, my last two days that we were there. She had been in the US prior, so I was afraid we were not going to get to meet her and thank her for our stay. She is a retired educator, as was her husband. Since we are also educators, this was like the icing on the cake for us! She is a funny, warm ,lovely lady who really cared that our stay was perfect. I so enjoyed meeting and talking to her. Thank you, ALL, at Casa Cook for the most enjoyable 10 days of our lives. We are seasoned travelers, and have been everywhere. We rarely consider going back to any place twice, since there is so much to see in the world, but I PROMISE that we will be coming back to Tamarindo and Casa Cook. In all of our years traveling, and all of the places we've traveled to, this was our favorite vacation EVER, and it was because of all of you! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the vacation of a lifetime!

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
8 Thank amanda1969
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anchorage, Alaska
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 4, 2011

We were at the Casa Cook from 4-12-11 to 4-20-11 and absolutely loved it. We were in one of the 2 cabinas just steps away from the beach. It was quiet, relaxing, the rooms were clean and kept clean daily. We did not meet the owners but Marie was an incredible host and helped us with a driver, activities and restaurant referrals and always right on the money. Antonio and Ignacio were also extremely helpful and friendly, running our lounge chairs out to the beach everyday, suggesting activities and pointing out the wildlife we would have probably missed on our own. (Also removed a big lizard that somehow got into out toilet-still can't figure that one out).
We moved onto Protrero Beach for the rest of our stay (6 Days). Marie said we would miss Casa Cook and boy, was she right. If we'd known then what we know now, we would have stayed the entire time at Casa Cook.
Thanks for one of our best vacations yet!!!!!
John and Jackie Brunton
Anchorage, Alaska

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Brunton28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed March 29, 2011

We chose to stay at Casa Cook based largely on the reviews we saw on Trip Advisor. This little gem lived up to all of those prior reviews and was a very good value.

The location was perfect. Our cabina was 10 steps from the beach and a 5 minute walk to town - far enough to be away from any late-night noise, but close enough to walk to all of the restaurants, bars, and shopping in Tamarindo.

The cabina was clean and well-maintained and was the perfect size for my wife and I, although the unit could sleep two more people on the futon in the sitting area. Having a small kitchen was nice - we had several breakfasts and lunches at our room. The staff was very accomodating, particularly Antonio, who always pointed out when the monkeys were out (howler monkeys passed by on the trees outside our cabina each day) or when it was high tide for surfing / boogie boarding.

My only criticism is that the mattress in our room was not very comfortable. The mattress was hard and did not have a box spring. I adjusted to it after a couple of days, but my first night of sleep in particular was not the greatest.

One other note - this is a very small operation. Think B&B without the breakfast. There is no restaurant or bar on site, although the Langosta Beach Club and the Hotel Capitan Suizo are only a few short steps away. However, the office managers (Marie and Lydia during our time there) were both very helpful in recommending restaurants for dinners and making reservations for us (for dinner and for tours).

Overall, a fantastic place to stay. We will definitely be back!

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank brwalters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ontario
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 14, 2011

We've been here several years in a row now. This time however was shocking, with the next door house, Casa Banyon being rented twice in a row to loud, obnoxious college boys who play music with no regard for their neighours, loud, rap, and loud shrilley girls, and drunken behavior well into the night. No fun. I emailed to property management, RPM, and let them know. I know others do the same. No one was happy about this. They should be screening their renters, and if this is the future of this area on Tamarindo, we'll be moving on. Hopefully this is a one time anomaly...Rob

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank RobProv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peterborough, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
21 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed March 13, 2011

We had the good fortune to spend nearly 3 weeks at Casa Cook in December, including over the Christmas holidays.

Before our departure, Marie answered all of my questions promptly and honestly. I was worried about scorpions, snakes and spiders because we were travelling with curious young kids (8 and 6), and my fears were quickly put into perspective (none on site, no worries).

We were recommended an outstanding airport shuttle service. Olman greeting us at the Liberia airport with our family name on his sign, and we were wisked away quickly. He even stopped at a large grocery store en route so we could stock up on supplies. The supermercados in Tamarindo are more expensive, so this was a great stop.

On arrival the staff were eager to help and super friendly. Speaking Spanish opened up a gateway of opportunity for learning and conversation. Although Antonio speaks good English, Ignacio speaks none, and he is a wonderful man, as is Antonio. Marie is extremely helpful, and goes beyond that. She is genuinely kind and will give you the real lowdown about where to go and not go.

The faciltiy itself was perfect for our family. We stayed in the Casita, which was ample space, but bear in mind the privacy is low. The rooms are quite open concept, the walls do not go all the way to the ceiling, so sound travels. The futons and beds are typical Central America style, so 3 weeks was tough on our backs, but well worth it!

You are steps from your pool and steps from the beach. Its perfect for runners who want to combine beach and road running, as you can create a good loop for your daily run.

Tamarindo is not the cheap Central American destination you may expect. You can rely on paying American dollars and its not cheap. Imagine budgeting yourself for a trip to Hawaii, not Cancun.

I'll go back in a heartbeat. I went through a MONTH of withdrawal, I missed it so much. We made good friends and had an exceptional time. Go.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank cathdamico
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Casa Cook

Property: Casa Cook
Address: | 100 metros Norte del Hotel Capitan Suizo, Tamarindo 50309, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Tamarindo
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 74 Specialty Lodging in Tamarindo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
At Casa Cook enjoy lounging on the white sand beach, swimming in the warm ocean water, observing the howler monkeys or feeding friendly iguanas. Swim in the sparkling pool and BBQ some fresh fish. Casa Cook is a small personal beach front hotel. Guests are very special to us at Casa Cook and we will make every effort to ensure that your stay is a truly special one. Our staff is available 24 hours a day to ensure you are comfortable and secure. Casa Cook is the perfect place for honeymoon couples or family reunions. The beach in front of Casa Cook offers safe swimming, fun boogie boarding and even great surf. There are plenty of boogie boards for everyone! The staff are happy to help you down to the beach with the lounge chairs so you can enjoy your day by the water. A short walk down the beach will take you to the town of Tamarindo where you may wish to enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner at one of the many outstanding restaurants. Each unit at Casa Cook is within a few steps of the beautiful beach, the warm waters of the Pacific Ocean. The units offers a fully-equipped kitchen with stove, refrigerator and microwave oven. All the units have air conditioning, ceiling fans, cable TV, and a safe. A telephone is available for guests. We provide secure parking on-site and free wireless internet. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Casa Cook Tamarindo
Casa Cook Hotel Tamarindo

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