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“Perched on hills, lovely sunrises but ... where is the ocean?”
Review of Allegro Papagayo

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Allegro Papagayo
Ranked #8 of 13 Hotels in Gulf of Papagayo
Reviewed June 17, 2013

When my group and I arrived (through Nolitours) at A.P. we were checked in within an hour, being served drinks which were nice and tasty. The staff was accommodating and helpful. The staff try hard (and succeed) with doing the best that they can. Our room was basic but pleasant to stay in. The water pressure was decent in the shower.
Even though it was my first time in an all-inclusive hotel, I wasn't wowed but then again, while traveling, I don't expect anything extravagant as I pay for what I get.
One disappointment that was the view of the ocean on the beach on the property. Sure, it's part of the ocean but it was basically a bay, so you didn't see the rest of it, just the surrounding hotels at night with their lights illuminated.
The food was ok, nothing to write home about but I didn't mind.
The drinks were delicious - bring on strawberry daiquiris - yummm and pina coladas.
I was only there a short time but had a brilliant tour on my 2nd day there where we did 3 in one package (horseback riding, zip lining, lunch and giant man-made waterslide)... had a blast!!!!
The grounds are nice and well maintained but very very hilly. I mean, very steep. It is a good thing that they have shuttle stops frequently.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Briteri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 14, 2013

I am going to start off my review on a positive note. The grounds at Allegro Papagayo are really nice, very hilly(they have shuttle stops) but very nice. The staff in my opinion really tries to make the best of what they have to work with. Now on to my review. We arrive at the hotel on Tuesday, June 4th at around 1:30p and proceed to the reception desk; we were hoping to check in, but were told that our room wasn't ready and we would have to come back at 3:00p. As we were going to make our way to the Buffett to enjoy lunch, we were stopped by Roberto (resort attendant) he proceeded to tell us about visiting their sister resort Grand Papagayo across the bay. We would be transported to the Grand Papagayo on a 28 foot boat. This offer included breakfast or lunch, a tour of the resort and a white sand beach. After a couple of minutes of listening to Roberto we knew it was a "Time Share" pitch and wanted no part of it. We finally make it down to the Buffett which was decent and had a good selection of food. After lunch we walk over to the bar area and have a couple of drinks, which were Piña Coladas, daiquiri and my hubby had Costa Rican beer(Imperial). As we are having our drinks we look up in the trees and see a white faced monkey, there were a few of in the trees. Finally, it is 3p (check in time) we make our way back up to reception to get the key to our room. I requested a certain building because it was closer to the pool and not as hilly, but was told they were completely booked, not true because i've never seen a place so empty. I am not a picky person, but I was disappointed with the upkeep of the room. The shower was disgusting; the blue tile in the shower looked like it hadn't been cleaned in months (soap scum) and the clothes line in the shower had mildew on it. The furniture was old and showing its age, chipped edges. The bedspread was white and there was lipstick on a portion of it. I really think the housekeeping staff needs training on how to clean. The second day our A/C goes out and much to my surprise after 30 minutes of reporting it out maintenance fixed it. We were traveling with another couple and they had many more issues with their room; they were finally moved to another room. The pool area was nice and clean. We had dinner in the Buffett; the staff dressed up the tables with linen and covered the wooden chairs with grease stained white seat covers; they were gross. There weren't that many people at the hotel because it is the low season, i could not imagine being there during high season. Overall I cannot recommend this hotel and unless Occidental puts some money into upgrades they will continue to get bad reviews.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Belinda A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandra Alcázar U, Social Media Coordinator at Allegro Papagayo, responded to this reviewResponded July 4, 2013

Dear Belinda A,

Thank you very much for taking the time to write a review of your recent stay with us. We would like to apologize to you for your negative experience at our hotel. We very much regret your disappointment, as this lack of service is not at all typical of the standards that we provide to our valued guests. It looks like we were not up to standard on this day, and we are very sorry for the inconvenience that we caused you.

Please rest assured that we have taken the appropriate steps to address your feedback with our Housekeeping and Maintenance managers in order to prevent any future occurrence. We hope you will give us another chance in the future to experience a vacation with us and gain your entire satisfaction and trust.

Sincerely,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2013

Disappointments: After traveling for hours to arrive at hotel, representative kept us for a long check in that turned out to be a sales pitch for the occidental vacation club. "All inclusive" rate not worth the money-seems bait and switch for selling club. Food poor; bar horrible. Pool very loud with different music playing in different places and loud speaker/microphone for entertainment/activities. Not a "serene" resort. Felt more like a party cruise atmosphere. TV reception poor. No internet in rooms, but charge $25 for access to internet in lobby and at pool. Mold on walls.

Delights: Staff very courteous and gracious. Location and views beautiful.

Possibilities: May be better deal for families/groups

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Kimberly H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandra Alcázar U, Social Media Coordinator at Allegro Papagayo, responded to this reviewResponded June 26, 2013

Dear Kimberly H,

Thank for your feedback and for reporting these shotcomings. We apologize your stay didn't meet your expectations. Your experience was beneath the standards that we set for ourselves. I have followed up with our food & beverages team regarding the type of issues you encountered at the restaurants and bars and we are reviewing our processes to prevent these annoyances in the future. Feedback like yours helps us to refine our service and coach our team so that we may prevent errors.
We do hope that you’ll give us a second chance to make you have memorables vacations.
Sincerely,

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Reviewed June 13, 2013

This hotel was a very good place to relax and enjoy nature and quite...the food was great, we had a great dinner at their italian restaurant.. the staff is great, they are very kind and most of them have good english ... the rooms are
good and comfortable... I totally recommend this hotel if you want to visit Guanacaste in Costa Rica

  • Stayed: June 2013
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Thank yorariascr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 13, 2013

We spent three nights in January at this property--we paid for the most expensive room because we were told there were at the bottom of the hill - closest to pool and ocean. When we arrived we were given a room in the 2 building at the top of the hill--when I told them I had paid for their highest price room (had paid in advance--big mistake) because I cannot walk those hills I was told that this room was considered the same grade as what I paid. After a half hour of him going back and forth to the back office they finally gave us a room lower on the hill but not what we paid for-as a matter of fact we made friend with the people next door and they wer paying half of what we paid. This place is a definite rip-off. Food was OK-nothing special--and the water cooler near our room did not work . Another joke was thier 1/2 day fishing trip offered on the premises--think it was $600 for 4 people--boat was an hour late and when they came they only had 5 pieces of bait which we ran out of in less than an hour--felt totally ripped off for the whole stay! Will never stay at an Allegro again

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank carolvan8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandra Alcázar U, Social Media Coordinator at Allegro Papagayo, responded to this reviewResponded June 27, 2013

Dear carolvan8,

We would like to thank you for taking the time to provide your feedback regarding your recent stay with us. On behalf of the entire team, I would like to express my sincere apologies that your stay was not to our expected level of satisfaction. Please know that we do our best to accommodate guest’s requests regarding room locations, but it can be challenging during high season- It saddens us to read that despite our attempts to make your stay more enjoyable, you left with a
disappointment.

Also, we are sincerely sorry for the negative experience you had with the fishing excursion, this is service is offered by a third party agency and usually receive positive feedback about their services. I assure you that your comments will be shared with the manager of the agency, in order to prevent any further occurrence.

We hope to have the chance of welcome you back and show you the level of service you can expect from our property.

Sincerely,

Report response as inappropriate
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Reviewed June 12, 2013

I will preface this review with the fact that it was our first time at an all inclusive resort so while we weren't sure what to expect, my husband and I left extremely disappointed.

First, as others have brought up it is in a very secluded location, so unless you have a rental car you are stuck. This wouldn't be so bad but the beaches were not nice. There was trash everywhere and the lounge chairs were either dirty or broken. It would be nice if they would clean the beaches for trash and rocks because getting a cigarette but stuck between your toes is less than desirable. There is a second white sand beach you can take a boat to, but that was equally disappointing.

Secondly, the drinking water was disgusting. It smelled horrible and tasted worse. It makes everything, including the coffee taste bad. We stayed at two other places in Costa Rica and the bad water was unique to this hotel. It made my stomach upset and we had to drive into to to buy gallons of water for the rest of our stay there to avoid making the stomach issues worse. We could not buy bottled water at the resort.

Also, the pool area smelled nasty. Like a septic tank gone bad. This stench was strongest on your way to the buffet, which is a great way to start dinner. This brings me to the food. Like another poster I ate less here than any time on our trip even though it was "free". Food did not seem to be stored and handled in a sanitary manner and did not taste great. The buffet dining area is akin to a sauna where you are trapped with bugs, bad food, and the occasional septic tank smell. They way it is atructured, there is no air flow so you are dripping sweat the entire time you eat, but the water is too questionable to drink to help cool you down.

My visit here made me feel like they were trying to squeeze every extra dime out of me. Wifi is an extra $25 A DAY! And the room safe was $2 a day, an unnecessary fee we did not experience anywhere else. There is a shuttle that, for a $20 per person fee, takes you to what can only be described as the lamest beach in Costa Rica. We took our rental car there, to check it out and would have been LIVID if we has paid to be taken there. There is a fee if your arm band breaks. There is a $15 fee if you lose your room key. There is a $20 fee for a lost towel key. The trips like snorkeling and fishing that you can book through the resort seemed to be marked up an extra 20%. There is also se sort of time share scheme that they try and sell you, and are very pushy about it.

The staff was friendly, but not very knowledgeable. Only one person knew how to make a reservation at one of the restaurants, only one person knew about excursions and could help you book one, there was conflicting information about where to meet or how to sign up for the boat that takes you to the other beach. It just felt like we were getting the runaround trying to get information.

Finally, there were too many arbitrary rules that were not enforced anyway. Such as, a sign says the pool closes at 7. Why it would close at 7, who knows, but that wasn't enforced anyway. Dress codes like men must wear "trousers" and women must wear closed toe shoes seems overly strict, but isn't enforced anyway. Reservations (for anything) must be made 24 hours in advance, but if you email before your stay trying to make one, you won't get a response. There is a whole booklet of rules they give you at check-in that made me feel like a preteen at church camp.

Would not stay here again, and I would not recommend this place to anyone I like.

  • Stayed: May 2013
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1  Thank rlsmith89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandra Alcázar U, Social Media Coordinator at Allegro Papagayo, responded to this reviewResponded June 26, 2013

Dear rlsmith89

Thank you for staying with us and providing us with your valuable feedback. Please accept my sincere apologies for any inconvenience you have experienced and for the level of service provided during your stay that did not meet your expectations. This is definitely not up to our standards and we are constantly working on improving the quality of service provided.

We are sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy our location. The golf of Papagayo is well-known for the variety and fauna and flora that surround the area, and usually guests enjoy it.

Allegro Papagayo follows strict procedures to ensure proper food handling and the safety of our guests. Also, we work with an outside company that performs hygiene and quality reports in which we haven’t received any anomaly. I will discuss your comments with the departments involved in your comments and I can assure you that we will improve our services and guest satisfaction.

Also, the hotel doesn’t have control over the cost of Wi- Fi, as the service is provided by an external company, I am sorry to read about your discomfort therefore we have shared your opinion with the manager in order to evaluate the cost.

I must apologize if the actions of the Vacation Club team were inappropriate. Their staff should be providing personalized service to our guests. I will relay your feedback to the Vacation Club Director to avoid a future occurrence.

I have taken note and wish to thank you for all your valuable comments. These are of great importance to us and allow us to monitor and improve our service continually. Thank you for staying with us and we all hope to have an opportunity to serve you again.

Sincerely,

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Reviewed June 7, 2013

My husband and I stayed here for two nights (was supposed to be three) in early June as a part of a travel package we purchased. We had previously been at a lovely hotel in La Fortuna (Magic Mountain) for 3 nights. Maybe if we had visited this resort first we would have not had such a strong negative reaction to it, but comparing this hotel and the amenities to what we had experienced the previous three days was a huge let down. Part of this may be largely due to our preferences...we're not "resort" people. I didn't come to Costa Rica to sit by a pool/beach all day with a lot of other Americans/Canadians while Aerosmith blasts from a subwoofer nearby. Unfortunately due to the location, you are quite isolated and cannot explore other areas on foot (restauraunts, shops, activities, etc). You are about a 30 minute drive from the closest neighboring beach. This is very different from the culture in La Fortuna and is something that the resort cannot necessarily help. What they can help though are their general services provided to their customers....this is an "all inclusive" resort, is it not? As virtually every other review has complained about, they do not provide WIFI in the rooms, and what they provide at the lobby/pool is not free. Their explanations have said it is because they have to pay a 3rd party for the service....of course they do, as do every other hotel that offers it for free. They also charge you $2 per day for a safe in the room. I'm sorry, but every other hotel we stayed at while in Costa Rica provided these services FREE OF CHARGE to the customer. We've already paid to stay there, stop trying to milk money out of us at every turn possible.
After experiencing so much excellent local food and freshly prepared cuisine in La Fortuna, the "all you can eat" buffet left much to be desired and was a huge letdown. I ate less the two days I was here (and it was free) than any of my other meals that I paid for....the food was that disappointing. We even tried the Mexican restaurant one night instead of the buffet...it too was horrible (and I've had bad Mexican before....this was worse).
Even though we had already prepaid for 3 nights at this resort, in the end we decided to eat the money and go back to our previous hotel in La Fortuna and pay for one more night there.
Our negative experiences here may be partially due to our personal preferences, but there are definitely areas that the hotel could improve (and most reviews list the same things and obviously the management doesn't care enough to do anything about it. I'll probably get the same response/excuses as other negative reviewers).

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Rachel N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandra Alcázar U, Social Media Coordinator at Allegro Papagayo, responded to this reviewResponded June 11, 2013

Dear Rachel N,

Thank you very much for taking the time to share your comments. I sincerely regret to read that you did not enjoy your stay with us. We strive to provide an exclusive service experience for every guest; therefore, your feedback is very important to us. Please allow me to express my deepest apologies in regards to the inconveniences caused.

I also apologize for the shortcomings you encountered while visiting our property. I have followed up with our Director of Food & Beverages to address your comments regarding the quality and variety of the food.

We hope to be able to regain your trust. Should you give us the honor of welcoming you back, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. I will personally ensure that your stay is most enjoyable.

Sincerely,

Sandra Alcázar
Social Media Coordinator
socialmedia@mx.occidentalhotels.com

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Allegro Papagayo

Address: Playa Manzanillo | P.O. Box 48-5000, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Gulf of Papagayo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#7 Spa Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#7 Luxury Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
Price Range: $200 - $230 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Allegro Papagayo 4*
Number of rooms: 300
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Also Known As:
Allegro Papagayo Hotel Gulf Of Papagayo
Allegro Papagayo Costa Rica
Allegro Papagayo Gulf Of
Allegro Papagayo Occidental
Costa Rica Occidental
Occidental Papagayo
Allegro Papagayo Resort

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