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“A mixed bag - great views but confused service -”

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Occidental Papagayo - Adults only
Ranked #7 of 13 Hotels in Gulf of Papagayo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 30, 2014

After a very long day of planes, airports, delays, and finally taxi ride to resort, we were exhausted and wanted nothing more than a cool, possibly tropical drink with fruit. Instead the lobby was extremely loud and filled with people coming and going to Disco. The check in was very confusing - probably because we could not hear clearly - and were taken to our room assured that cold drinks were in fridge and fruit basket was waiting. Wrong! Beverages in fridge were warmer that the room and not a fruit to be seen. Tried to call the Front Desk but phone was not answered after15 to 20 rings, so we walked the considerable distance to lobby to ask about something to eat only to be informed that the kitchen was closed and fridge would be looked at the next day! Eventually, staff was able to produce two small sandwiches, two cold bottles of water, and an ice bucket. Over the next days the problems were gradually fixed including the fridge after repeated requests, complaints, calls, etc. The location, property and beach are beautiful and the grounds well maintained. The guest room we had in Building 12 needed much more attention! Really enjoyed the wildlife on the property such as howler monkeys, iguanas, blue jays, raccoons, and the poolside coati! We found we preferred the a la carte restaurants and, on the first morning we were there, made several reservations. This is certainly the place for a casual, laid back week with as many or few activities as you care to do. Although we were located at the end of the road from the lobby, we did not mind the walk with marvelous vistas and frequent wildlife.

Room Tip: All rooms have unobstructed ocean views but a number of room required going up or down steps without...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank CyndiE920
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 27, 2014

The best part of the hotel is the entertainment staff. Jerald kept us laughing and dancing at night, while the pool staff kept us playing water polo, competing in table tennis competitions, and, of course, more dancing. The beach is peaceful and the grounds are beautiful.

The service staff, however, tanks the hotel. Right out of the taxi, disheveled from a long trip, the hotel staff tries to get you to buy a timeshare. The concierge is really just a disguised sales person who gets paid when you sign up to go on a timeshare tour. If you aren't interested in the tour, the concierge isn't interested in you.

Hopping a rocket to Mars is easier than making a reservations for the a la carte restaurants. The front desks receptionists cannot or will not help and gave us wrong information on how to make a reservation. But if you do go, book your restaurant reservations for the week. The food is superior over the buffet.

Beware that there is no confirmation of your room number and any extraneous charges that occur at the hotel. In other words, anyone can charge something to your room without identification or signature. We learned this upon checkout when the receptionist informed us that money was owed for a bottle of wine purchased at one of the restaurants that are incredibly hard to get a reservation at. We hadn't dined at the restaurant. We argued with the receptionist while our airport taxi idled.

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with friends
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5  Thank Lena C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 25, 2014

Had the most wonderful time at this resort...food was awesome...just an amazing vacation ...staff are all wonderful!!! Coco Beach was great especially when Costa Rica beat Italy for the Fifa Soccer game...

Room Tip: The oceanview rooms 211...section are fantastic!
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  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank longlegz99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 23, 2014

We stayed in building 17 and had a beautiful view of the ocean. It has a cottage feel to it. We had howler monkeys show up in the trees just in front of our patio. There are tons of iguanas and they love bananas and pineapple. Be ready for a charge as they come out of the wood work when you feed one, many more show up.
The staff are very polite and friendly and will try to be as helpful as possible. Bryan was my favourite as I have never met anyone so polite.
The pool was almost too warm so we played in the ocean most of the time. There is security on the beach so you can leave your things and not worry. I gave them a couple of dollars to say thanks. They don't expect it but are happy you acknowledge them.
If you want a place to relax and experience wild life this is the place. If you want to get drunk and party, find another place as there are not too many bars or waiters bringing you drinks.
The view from the lobby is truly amazing and a great place to hang out first thing in the morning and enjoy a coffee.
We enjoyed the long walk back to our room after dinner, and if you are in a lazy mood, they will drive you home.

Room Tip: Building 17 has nice views, is very quiet and no path in front of your patio so you don't get pe...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Janice D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 23, 2014

We had a great stay at the resort. My husband and I upgraded to the Royal club which offers a few additional benefits. The views were great from our room! Staff was very friendly. Cons: wifi is really slow, stairs are everywhere so you will be working on your fitness! Neither cons affect you too much because they do have a shuttle service if needed and who is on the computer while in Costa Rica!

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Brittney P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 20, 2014

The grounds are beautiful. However, lots of stairs and hills. Fine for us but maybe more difficult for others. It's not a 4.5 star resort my any means but I would still recommend it. We were initially in building 2 and picked that one for proximity. We ended up being moved to building 12 because of a pipe leak in our room. I wasn't happy because the building was so far but we were told a short cut and the walk was actually easier then it was from building 2. When we complained about the water leak in our bathroom, Juan was quick to take care of it and moved us. He was very helpful and the room in building 12 was way nicer. All the employees made you feel welcome and the fun club always had great activities. I usually get annoyed with the pool activities (I just want to relax) but the fun club kept in on one side of the pool which was nice. Unfortunately the food wasn't great. Way better food off the resort. The actual resort is alright but the staff make it that much better. We also met great people which made our vacation that much more amazing. If you're looking for l boring and luxury, this hotel might not be for you. But if you're looking to meet great people and feel like family then check them out.

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Jessica T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 18, 2014

This hotel and the grounds are pretty with great views, pretty good food (variety of options), friendly staff, and has the option of pool or beach. They can also help you with fun costa rica excursions like zip lining, ATV riding, surfing, etc. The only negative thing is that you can't get wifi in the rooms. You can pay extra to have wired internet (ethernet cord) in the room, but for wifi you have to go to the lobby which was sometimes spotty and inconvenient. If you want to tune out the world and relax though, this might not be a bad thing!

Room Tip: I got to stay in the building closest to the lobby, which was more convenient for going to the lobby...
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  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with friends
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1  Thank RP3x454
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Occidental Papagayo - Adults only

Address: Playa Hermosa, 485000, Costa Rica (Formerly Occidental Grand Papagayo by Barceló)
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Gulf of Papagayo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Best Value Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#6 Spa Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#6 Luxury Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
Price Range: $176 - $309 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Occidental Papagayo - Adults only 4*
Number of rooms: 163
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in Guanacaste on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica,The Adults Only Occidental Papagayo is only at 25 minutes from the Liberia International Airport. This Resort surrounded by nature, boast lush tropical landscape with scenic views of Bahia Culebra in Papagayo Golf.Ideal for couples, honeymooners and adult guest seeking a relaxing getaway. The Occidental Papagayo offers a highly personalized five star all- inclusive experience delivered by an attentive and dedicated staff. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Occidental Grand Papagayo Hotel Gulf Of Papagayo
Occidental Grand Papagayo Gulf Of
Occidental Grand Papagayo Costa Rica
Grande Papagayo Costa Rica
Grand Papagayo Liberia

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