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“A tropical paradise...”
Review of Hotel Banana Azul

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Hotel Banana Azul
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed August 30, 2011

My partner and I stayed in the Hotel Banana Azul for the final 5 nights of our recent two week holiday in Costa Rica. We arranged the booking well in advance and, on account of the prompt and helpful advice relating to our itinerary and the exceptional reviews on Trip Advisor, we were expecting great things. However, when we arrived we found that the hotel exceeded even the highest of our expectations!

As it is located just far enough away from the town to maintain a level of peaceful tranquillity, the hotel met our every need perfectly. The beach is only a few meters from the wonderfully landscaped grounds and, if the sand or salt isn’t for you, then the small but beautiful pool will provide some relief from the heat. Whilst basic, the room (one of two ‘Sloth Cabinas’) fulfilled our needs perfectly, and with a balcony possessing both an ocean view and a hammock, it was a perfect place to spend time reading and getting away from all of the stresses of everyday life. However, without air conditioning it did get rather hot at night which, although not a problem for us, is something to consider if you are not so used to/tolerant of such things.

One of the things that really set the Hotel Banana Azul apart from all of the other places we stayed during our trip was the staff. Everyone from the management downwards were incredibly helpful in seeing to our needs, and what’s more they were incredibly sincere in doing so and we could tell that they genuinely wanted us to get the most from our stay. They also seem very happy in their jobs, which although perhaps a little trivial to some, really helped to create a relaxing and welcoming atmosphere!

Our stay was the perfect end to a perfect holiday and we were very sad to leave. If you are after an escape to a tropical coastal paradise and a taste of the Caribbean culture of Costa Rica then this is definitely the hotel for you! However, if you are after a luxury resort with all of the creature comforts that accompany it then perhaps consider looking elsewhere.


Nick and Steph
England, UK

Oh and if your in Puerto Viejo the Jaguar Rescue Centre is an absolute must!!!

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Nick_Bullock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 30, 2011

Banana Azul was the best place we stayed while in Costa Rica for 2 months.
Great value for the money, great staff & food, the rooms were fantastic, clean yet rustic.
The open air lounge was a nice place to relax or chat with & meet other travelers.
20 minute walk along to beach to town.
We just loved this place and can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ellejayp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 22, 2011

Banana azul is a friendly hotel, with excellent service and great atmosphere. Everybody, from David at the front desk to Franklin in the restaurant and all the staff in general do a great job of making you feel at home. The new pool is wonderful and very relaxing, the beach is close by and very clean and safe. The hotel is just wonderful...I recommend it to everybody! The breakfast was delicious every day! I will keep coming back :0)

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled with friends
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4  Thank PamelaC21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 12, 2011

Went to Costa Rica with several friends to celebrate my 50th birthday. Hotal Banana Azul was amazing. The drive from San Jose is a bit long, but I understand their are flights into the area that are pretty cheap. We rented the "Apartment" - two bedroom, one bath, a kitchen and large open living space. It was fantastic. The weather was great - it is warm, the grounds are amazing. Beautiful flowers and plants, all meticulously maintained. There are many furry family members that occupy the hotel which make it very homey. The food was amazing, free breakfast came with the apartment and the lunches and dinners were varied and very tasty. Prices were good too. Nice bar - friendly staff and the owners are great. They have a phone which allows you to call the states for a couple of dollars for 10 minutes. Nice to be able to call my family since my cell phone didn't work. They also have wi-fi in the lobby area. You can go ziplining from there - which we did and was amazing - kayaking, hiking, you name it. The concierge will arrange it all!

Would definitely visit there and highly recommend it for the traveler that doesn't require air conditioning and enjoys a rustic environment - off the beaten path!!

Room Tip: Make sure you get a balcony room. There are several off the dining room that are very small with no...
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  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with friends
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2  Thank ttinney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2011

We stayed at the Banana Azul in January of 2011 as a part of our trip through Costa Rica. This hotel was the best hotel we stayed at. We arrived late at night, it wasnt hard to find (that is, we didnt get lost) but its a long drive. It was so nice to get there, it was hot and humid and we had been driving for hours so it was nice to get to our room. We had booked one of the apartments which had a very nice living area with a kitchen, two bedrooms and a toilet and we did not regret booking it and paying extra as we had the privacy and a lot of space. Also an added bonus were the dogs and the cats that spent the nights in our apartment. The breakfast is really nice, its simple but enough. We also had dinner there a couple of times and it was just fine. They also have a bar with a good selection of drinks and beer. The staff is really friendly and helpful. The garden is beautiful and the swimming pool is really nice. The beach is just a few steps away from the hotel and it is also really nice, it feels really good to swim there. Its a beautiful hotel, great service, very good location and really nothing that I could complain about. I would recommend this hotel to anyone and I would love to stay there again.

Room Tip: Book the apartment, its worth it.
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  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank StefanOrn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2011

I recently had the opportunity to stay at Banana Azul on two different ocassions.This place is the best in Puerto Viejo, in my opinion. Being right on the beach is a plus but Banana Azul goes the extra distance to assure a great stay.
The rooms are attractive and VERY clean.Our room, both times, was on the 2nd floor of the main building. Each room on that floor has a large porch with privacy for relaxing. Discrete screens and beautiful plants were used to separate each unit. A hammock and table and chairs are on each porch and a beautiful view of the Caribbean and the sound of the surf makes for a perfect spot to relax after a busy vacation day. One can relax on the porch with a view of the pool and vibrant grounds of the hotel and still get the sights and sounds of the sea.
The upstairs rooms are not air conditioned but we didn't find that an issue. Fans are strategically mounted in the rooms. By bedtime it has cooled sufficiently for a restful night. The beds are comfortable. The bathrooms are large and airy. No tub in ours, shower only. The shower is tiled and very nice.
We enjoyed several meals at the hotel restaurant. Breakfast is included in the price and it's always very good and substantual. The lunch menu is a treat. The salads are good and the ham and cheese sandwich is one of the best I have ever eaten. If they are serving Talapia with spinach sauce for dinner while you are there, don't miss it. It's great!
All of the above is reason enough for one to want to stay at Banana Azul, but the best is yet to come. The service, staff, and ambiance?....nothing but the best. We never encountered an unpleasant staff member. The "feel" of the place is something one must experience. I cannot describe it but to say it is a comfortable, laid-back, fun place with everything we could have hoped for. This will be my home away from home whenever I am in Puerto Viejo.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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3  Thank thumbsup45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2011

I write this review with great reluctance because I would like to keep Banana Azul a secret. We have just completed a two week stay at this gorgeous hotel and will leave with many fond memories. If you can imagine yourself at a small hotel in the middle of paradise then Banana Azul is for you. We had an Ocean room that looked out on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. (I am sorry Turks and Caicos, you are no longer #1 in our book). The beach is basically a private beach. You see some morning walkers, but after that it is pretty much all yours. The hotel ambiance is unique. Everything from the landscaping to the appointments in the rooms are extremely well done. The staff...David, Christian, Roberto, Stepahnie et al are all attentive but not overbearing. The General Manager, Fred, is a gem. Ask him for anything and it is done. We met one of the owners, Roberto, and we understood why Banana Azul was such an outstanding experience. We used the hotel as our base of operations to take multiple day trips to the jungle, Indigenous reservations, Panama, snorkeling, etc. Gecko tours which is onsite was most helpful in this regard. We found the food at he hotel to be outstanding as well and meticulously prepared and presented by the culinary staff. Please go visit Banana Azul but do not tell your friends.

Room Tip: Ocean rooms are great.
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  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled on business
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1  Thank uscdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Banana Azul

Address: Playa Negra, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
#1 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Price Range: $64 - $161 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Banana Azul 3.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Banana Azul hotel is a small and simple hotel north of town on Playa Negra. The small boutique hotel has been created with care using local products and a philosophy that emphasizes relaxation. We cater to adults, 16 years and over. Blooming gardens adorn the property, as does several freely-hanging hammocks, providing the perfect spot for afternoon napping or leisurely reading. A meandering pond inhabited by fish and turtles flows through portions of the property adding a lighter element to the ongoing natural soundtrack of waves crashing against the shoreline. The hotel consists of 22 beautiful guest rooms with private baths, fans (some with A/C), and free WiFi. Most rooms are on the second floor of the main building, and open onto a large veranda with sweeping ocean views and of the garden. Banana Azul offers its guests a quaint restaurant that serves a complimentary filling breakfast, variety of lunch options and refreshing drinks throughout the day and a relaxing three entre dinner option in a romantic atmosphere at night. Caribe Fun Tours is on site to assist with tours and transportation needs and can assist with a variety of package options including visits to the Arenal Volcano, canopy tours, snorkeling trips, and even rafting excursions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Banana Azul Hotel
Banana Azul Puerto Viejo
Hotel Banana Azul Costa Rica/Limon

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