I had a lovely stay at the Banana Azul in September, but I am a touch surprised that it is the number one ranked hotel in the area. The service, in general, was some of the friendliest that I have had, and I don't think I could ever get tired of lounging on such a gorgeous, secluded beach.
However, I certainly wouldn't recommend the hotel for a romantic getaway (unless you can reserve one of the suites--from the reviews it sounds like they are more private). The Ocean Room where I stayed completely lacked privacy. I could hear everything being said in the rooms next to me, and the balcony is divided only with folding screens. Wouldn't seem to be such a big deal, but as the room itself is a tad on the small side (not a problem), I am sure most people keep the big french doors to the balcony open so the fresh air can circulate (wonderful--just not private).
As for the food... Because the beach tables and chairs are just so deliciously inviting, we decided to eat lunch there a couple of days so as to not have to pry ourselves away. Unfortunately, that was a mistake. Unless you like Cheez Wiz, which I can't say I have really enjoyed since the 80s. We had dinner one night, which was much better--a typical Caribbean-style barbecue. All in all, though, you'd be better off eating somewhere in town or at one of the nice restaurants along the road just outside of town.
I would stay here again, but have slightly different expectations.
- 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