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“No Place for good service”
Review of Hotel The Place

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Hotel The Place
Ranked #6 of 8 Hotels in Mal Pais
Certificate of Excellence
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“No Place for good service”
Reviewed July 31, 2014

Though nicely decorated, it didn't take long to find out that The Place was all style and no substance. We had to seek out a front desk person upon our arrival, and when offered a chance to move from a standard room (which was right by the road) to a bungalow, we took it; for an extra $50, even though their website listed the bungalow as costing only $30 more.
The Place is not within walking distance to town, which was irrelevant since most restaurants there closed at 5:00 during the off-season when we were there. That wouldn't have been a big deal, except The Place restaurant was also closed; a fact not mentioned at our booking.
And speaking of our booking, while paying the extra money for a bungalow, we were informed that they had no room, of any kind, for us the following night. Oops. Someone there had screwed up the reservation.
I don't think we ever even received an apology for that. Just told that the owners had been called. Not sure what the owners would do from Switzerland, but pretty sure that their proximity to the problem was indication of their concern for our well-being.
I believe it was while my husband was outside our bungalow trying to fix the hot water heater, that I went ahead and contacted the lodge at our next destination (Lagarta Lodge, in Nosara, AWESOME!) and they got us in a day early. A one-night stay in Mal Pais is a drag given the long, dirt road drive to get there.
We never did get hot water, but we did get some bright red ants.
If the owners care about The Place, it doesn't show. A good start toward care would be getting the staff off the bong long enough to review a training manual. The Place is looking a lot like pseudo-hippie-hipster-poserland right now.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank XML
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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170 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
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English first
Dallas, Texas
Level 2 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 14, 2014

When my husband and I decided to take a couple's trip to Costa Rica we had never been there before so I did a LOT of research on hotels before we went. We chose Hotel the Place based on the best value for a private bungalow and it was worth it! Their manager Graciela booked a private taxi from the airport to the hotel and she even changed the time when our flight was delayed.

When we pulled up to Hotel The Place we were immediately greeted by Lucky, the resident dog, as well as Paul (the chef) and Graciela (the manager). Once we checked in we were really excited to see that our bungalow was very clean, intimate, had great AC, mini-fridge with beer, water and soda, as well as free coffee! There was also wifi so after I got a terrible sunburn we stayed inside the next day and watched movies on our ipad. The food at The Place is simply amazing, where else can you go where the chef asks you what you want to eat and then cooks it for you on an open range? We had delicious fish, pasta and our favorite Papa Brava! Make sure to ask Paul for that. They also keep the rooms very clean, the maids came like clockwork everyday and swept up all the sand we brought in from the beach.

We wanted to do a multitude of different activities like surfing, zip lining, horseback riding, snorkeling and riding ATVs through the jungle. Graciela knew all of the best companies to go on the tours with and booked the best experiences for us! It was a breeze. Every day we went out for an adventure and then returned to the hotel for a fruity drink and a lounge by the pool. All of the bartenders were super nice and helpful, we got to know everyone like they were our Costa Rican family.

Even though we went as a couple I would also recommend this hotel to families. There were a couple of families there with children and they seemed to be having a great time. Overall, we highly recommend this hotel if you are looking for exceptional service, comfort and delicious food. We can't wait to go back!

Room Tip: We stayed in a bungalow and definitely recommend this if you're looking for a couple's getaw...
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jencey K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 4, 2014

Our family of five had a wonderful surf vacation at Hotel The Place. It is clean, cozy and welcoming. The staff could not be friendlier or more helpful. It is not fancy, but is like staying at your friend's family compound on the lake. So relaxing. Great AC (if you want it), beds and fresh towels.
Breakfast was excellent, and we lounged by the pool as we ate. Easy walk to the beach and into town. Reasonably priced.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mary b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Rafael de Escazu, Costa Rica
1 review
Reviewed March 26, 2014

Spent 3 wonderful days with my 2 kids. they have the most amazing pool and comfortable lounge chairs... I didn't even move from there during my stay, no need to go elsewhere, the attention is perfect. the house where we stay has the most cute decoration I haven[t seen in a LONG TIME.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sophie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, Florida, United States
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed March 13, 2014

If you're looking for a luxurious resort style hotel, it's not this one. The rooms here are small, there is no television, and amenities are sparse. However, if you are looking for a place to disconnect from modern convenience and enjoy natural beauty, hospitality and truly understand Pura Vida, stay at Hotel The Place. Everyone we encountered during our stay were sweet and sincere. The hotel has a BEAUTIFUL pool. It's where we spent most of our stay when we weren't on the beach or sleeping. The water was the perfect temperature and the landscaping was made to feel like paradise. Also, it's only a 6 minute walk to the best beach on earth! Im sure there are more accommodating hotels if you're looking for a full-service, modern experience. But in terms of relaxing and slowing down to appreciate the natural beauty of Costa Rica while meeting some awesome people, we couldn't have picked a better spot.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jennifer M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Punta Uva, Costa Rica
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 12, 2014

Just spend 3 beautiful days at the place and it was fabulous. I read some bad reviews and I really do not understand where it is coming from. We had the Ocean Breeze bungalow, it was spotless, spacious even for the 4 of us. Top quality mattresses, fluffy towels and good services, the breakfast was amazing and the staff was very friendly. It is also very close to the beach and all ammenities. we traveled a lot and would recommend this hotel to anyone.
Emmanuelle.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Emmacaribe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level 5 Contributor
80 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed March 2, 2014 via mobile

Because of the really nice pool and pool area I would say 3-stars...but for this price (around 140dollars/night) you really would expect more...so 2 stars..

1 star is for the friendly staff, nice welcome
1 star for the pool, large and nicely designed

However I would never come back en not recommend it. The bungalows are large, but old. There is dust on every higher located spot, we had around 50 large RED ants in our bungalow (including the bed!!). I know this is Costa Rica, but I have been travelling for over a month in CR and this is not OK for such an upmarket price.
The decoration is poor. As is the design...4 beds in 1 bungalow...and the toilet and shower are all in the same room...no doors or ceiling!!! Just a curtain....
And everywhere there is posted that the hotel is for sale! So I guess there are no large investments being made...

It really is not a horrible place, and as I said the staff is so friendly, but this is not what you might expect for this price! Look for better option, or ask for big discount.

Stayed March 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Aap86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
theplace, Owner at Hotel The Place, responded to this review, March 4, 2014
Dear Client

We are sorry to hear that you did only enjoy part of your stay at our hotel. We will definetely check on the room cleaning and the ant problem. Some times this can happend depending the time of the year. All our bungalows have been updated and painted just before the start of the season 2013/14 but we definetley will try to make it better. Thank you for the nice response on our staff !

Hotel The Place
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel The Place

Property: Hotel The Place
Address: 200 mts from Hotel Frank's Place direction Mal Pais, Mal Pais, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Mal Pais
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Mal Pais
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel The Place 3.5*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel The Place is within short walking distance to the main beach Playa Carmen,in close proximity to the center of town with easy access to shops,restaurants and banks. The hotel features standard rooms, bungalows and a vacation home. A beautiful free form pool with waterfall invites our guest for a swimm.You can enjoy breakfast in our lounge in the morning or, starting april 2012, prepare your own meal in our open Rancho kitchen.We gladly organize tours and transfers leaving from the Hotel.The Place is an ideal establishment to relax and feel at home for couples, families and smaller groups. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Surf The Place Hotel
Hotel The Place Costa Rica/Mal Pais

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