We initially booked the property for 8 nights. Our other accommodation fell through and the owners offered to stay with friends, so our stay was extended to 12 nights. The owner was initially very helpful and friendly, quick to respond to the booking request and other questions and also helpful on arrival. She organized discounted tickets for us to a New Yea r event at a local hotel.
On arrival we were shown around the property and how things worked. I was a bit surprised that the second bedroom had not been made up or cleaned together with its en-suite bathroom as most properties are when you rent the full home. We noted that there was only aircon in one room - the main bedroom. The owner said that they always slept with the doors to this room open and used a fan and didn't use the aircon. That night, we turned the aircon on in order to sleep comfortably as the main bedroom has no windows, so when you are out during the day there are wooden doors on either side of the room which have to be closed up to leave the property secure. Coming back, the room is extremely hot! The aircon immediately made a loud clunking noise and although there was a bit of cool air coming from the top, it lasted about 20 minutes and it was clear that the aircon was not working. As the room was uncomfortably hot (we later measured that the night time temperature in the room was 28 degrees Celsius!) we had no option but to open the wooden doors on one side of the room and try to sleep like that, with the fan on. We were very uncomfortable as the owners had told us that previous guests had been burgled of all their belongings by leaving them in this room, unsecured while they were out one evening. Early next morning I informed the owner that the aircon was not working and that we had slept badly as a result. As she was still in the area at ths stage, she said they would be around to look at it. When they arrived in the afternoon, the owner's husband said that a new aircon was probably needed. The owner said that she did not want to be spending money on that right now, especially as they do not use the aircon. Suffice to say that days went by as the owner provided daily stories of looking for parts, parts not being available, workmen in Costa Rica not being willing to work over the holidays (this was over new year) and it being a third world country and finally that indeed a new aircon was needed but that it was now to late to get it before we were leaving.. We were given a couple of extra fans to use in the room and told that she couldn't understand what the problem was in sleeping at night with open doors and fans. We were also told that we could move our bedding down to the spare room at the bottom of the house (which had not been cleaned) and which would be cooler. This room is accessed by a separate entrance to the house, down a dark path and would also require sleeping with the door open. We slept poorly throughout our stay as the room did not cool and we were just blowing hot air around. After 9th night of our stay it was clear that the owner was not going to fix the aircon. She repeatedly told us how she was bending over backwards for us and how stressful this situation was for HER. Whilst having a call with her and expressing my dissatisfaction, she told me that if I was not prepared to sleep in these conditions, I should never have come to Costa Rica on holiday! At this stage, we decided to check into a hotel for two nights to get some decent sleep . I informed the owner that we were doing this. We locked up the house securely (strongly advised at all times and lock all valuables in the safe room each time you go out) and took all our valuables with us, leaving our clothing and a few other bits to collect on the last night before checking out. We arrived back at the house after the two nights in the hotel to find that someone had been at the house and had left the door to the main bedroom unlocked and open....we later heard from the owner that she had returned to the house when we said we had gone to a hotel and found our things there. She therefore questioned whether we had actually left......I have never come across such an unpleasant attitude. You can tell a lot about a host by how they respond when things go wrong.
We did not feel comfortable sleeping unsecured for the whole of our stay. We were not offered any kind of minimal compensation, rather we were told that we should be prepared to go with the flow, or stay at a resort ( or not come to Costa Rica!).
This was our second visit to Costa Rica and our first to Montezuma, which we loved. Highly recommend the area for lovely beaches, great restaurants, wildlife, walking horse riding etc but recommend staying elsewhere. There are lost of other lovely places to rent.
If you do stay here, note:
lovely nature around - birds, lizards, monkeys in the trees to the side of the house
You need a car - steep walk to and from the town with a couple of hills. This can be doable during the day but there are no sidewalk and it is dark and unlit at night. Not easy to find taxis in town. We had a small 4x4 car which was good. With a cr it is only 5 minutes to town.
Nice pool that is a good size but no sunbeds or loungers by the pool to relax by - only hard back rockers outside the bedroom
Definitely always lock all your valuables in the safe room - previous guests left valuables in the bedroom downstairs, unsecured and were burgled of everything. We didn't feel very safe..the owners said that tourists are sometimes a target as they have extra money and believe that the guests who had been burgled may have been watched when they went out at night. Did not feel great!
Request written confirmation that things that are important to you are working. Don't necessarily expect things to be fixed if they go wrong when you are there. The owners did not give us a local contact while they weren't there, so we were left to deal with them by phone/email miles away.
No doubt the owner will respond with a lengthy explanation of her own, so will leave you to make up your own mind.....
|How easy was it to book the property?||How helpful were the directions to the property?|
|How easy was key pickup/access to the property?||Overall condition of the property|
|Bedding & mattresses||Kitchen & utensils|
|Bathroom cleanliness||Other facilities & amenities|