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“Nice place, grumpy owner”

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Cuesta Arriba Hotel
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 10, 2013

My buddy and I stayed here for 3 nights...it was very clean and was a super nice place to chill. Everyone who worked there was very friendly, except for the owner Barbara. She was friendly at first, but then quickly flipped the switch to unpleasant. We were told if we wanted to rent surf boards and bikes then we could work out a "deal" for each day. So the one day we surfed for an hour and brought the boards back thinking we would take bikes down to the ATM because there is nothing even close to the hostel...wrong, Barbara wanted us to pay full price for each even though we only wanted them for an hour each. Another time, someone in our room had set a bag on a bed that was not being used that night. Barbara ended up getting mad because of this and made me pay for the bed $18 or pay to do a load of laundry $12 all because something was set on it...not very friendly at all. I still would recommend this hostel, just stay away from Barbara and try and talk to James and Charlotte, they are super kind.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Adam R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
cuestaarriba, Owner at Cuesta Arriba Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 12, 2013

Dear customer,
Firstly we are glad that you found the hostel a clean and relaxing environment to stay. However, we are saddened to find that you found our staff to be unpleasant. We try to always be a welcoming and friendly team, and try to suit all of our clients’ needs.
As we now have a 6 hour and a 24 hour rental, for either surfboards or bicycles, we offer the flexibility of a short term rental for only $6usd and a longer term rental for $10usd. To avoid drawback in our reception, rental packages are arranged in advance and not during the rental like in this case. We do not offer hourly rentals due to the lack of reliability and cost effectiveness.
This client was the lead party of the group and therefore was approached by a member of staff with regards to the vacant dorm bed. When staying in a dormitory room, it is unusual for people to use a free bed. Due to the bed being reserved, it was vital that the client had fresh sheets. On this occasion, the bed had been used and the sheets were marked and full of sand by the group in question. Upon arriving to a hotel, how would you feel finding dirty sheets on your bed? No one would find this acceptable within the traveling community so the group had to take responsibility for their actions.

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117 - 123 of 247 reviews

Reviewed February 9, 2013 via mobile

I feel very awful to give a bad review to this place as every day and night that I've spent here up until a few hours ago was great.
It was mainly great because of the people I met that were also staying there- that aside, the hostel is beautiful and clean. They greeted me letting me know its very "chill" there. I was ready to pay for a weeks stay right upon arrival but was encouraged to pay for just the night? I found this peculiar. Then I learned their habits of just checking in with you in the evening if "Would you like to extend your stay? No rush at all- whenever is good for you". Well what's good for me is having a room in general. I had requested with the receptionist that from Friday to Sunday I'd definitely be there. Then I gave her money- thinking I'd paid till Sunday but I only paid til Saturday I found out later?? WHY!?
So Friday I was moved to a different room... A little annoying but no big deal. Then later that night I was approached and said they needed my bed for a group and was offered a bed in the tv room. Again, rather annoying to pack everything up again- but it would be fine, so I agreed. This morning at about 9:30am while I was having my coffee the gentleman receptionist approached me saying there was actually NO room for me! What the heck! I had 1hr and a half to pack everything and find a new place! They didn't even offer to help me find a place?? Just had to get out. I was just so confused because my stay had been so nice thus far. Then when I came back from my walk, I dunno... Just looking for a place to stay!!! The receptionist gentleman hurried me saying, come on, we are changing shifts with receptionists. So rude I couldn't believe it. So then I check out and am embarrassed because i thought money was owed to ME, thinking I paid for Sunday, which I don't know why I hadn't- even though I reserved it- perhaps so I could be kicked put at their leisure?
AND I had an incident with a bike rental- their bike had a bolt come loose, which I'm sure happens often on the bumpy dirt road- and I myself had to rig it so I could even make it home- I lost the chain on the way. I have no problem replacing or paying for that- the receptionist said she would talk to the owner about it and then I never heard anything about it again(this was days ago)- and AGAIN my bad for not paying attention, but I could have sworn I paid for the bike rental either when I got back or when I paid for two nights?? Very confusing. I don't understand why they wouldn't tally all my tab in one payment. MY ADVICE TO YOU-
Stay here its nice, just INSIST that you pay for everything right then and there because "chill" means either negligent or so they can kick you out if they need to. this service was the bottom rung of customer service. I felt like crying at the lack of care portrayed to someone that respectively slept at their establishment.

  • Stayed: February 2013
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1  Thank Blisse1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
cuestaarriba, Owner at Cuesta Arriba Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 12, 2013

Dear Customer,
We are glad that you found our hotel a clean and beautiful environment to stay in. We are sorry that you feel this way due to misunderstandings and a lack of communication. When making a reservation is it always important that you specify how long you wish to stay and are 100% certain while making this reservation. When we receive a reservation without a date specification, we reserve for two nights only. On arrival, the client wished to stay longer but was unsure and only paid for the two nights. From here, we always ask our guests to check back with reception as soon as possible with extensions. We are always open to clients staying a week or more, but are always cautious due to our no refund policy.
On this occasion, this did not happen. We checked with the client everyday if they were extending. Throughout the hostel you will find our policy. On here it clearly states that if you are booking via a day by day system, you must pay by 11am on that morning or you may lose your space. It also states that extensions are to be made by the client in reception, up to one day in advance. On all occasions, the client was approached by a member of staff to confirm if they were staying or not. By doing this, you will always run the risk of being moved to a different dorm room and the possibility of losing your space.
When taking out rentals or extending your stay it is important that both parties keep track of what is outstanding. At Cuesta Arriba we allow a tab service, but it is always the client’s responsibility to know how much they owe. We are trusting and make clients very aware of what is outstanding; we also have both a paper and electronic system where everything is taken into account. So when the client does not keep track we can only rely on our system, everything is recorded so it leaves no room for dispute.

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Reviewed February 4, 2013

I've seen about 5 other hostels in Santa Teresa, and Cuesta Arriba is surely the best spot! Away from the core you find a peaceful vibe here, are a 2min walk from the beach, and still close to shops, cafes & bars! The rooms and grounds are kept pristine; the shared kitchen is super; hammocks to nap in; a tv/lounge spot doubles as a yoga studio; and the pool is awesome when the sunny beach is too much! Martin & Barbara are great hosts, with bicycles & surfboards onsite (yoga/surf classes as well)... plus group tours and trip advice aplenty! The atmosphere is relaxed and sociable -- easy to find calm, or meet other laid-back travellers... Wish I'd spent my entire vacation here. Will surely return next year!

Room Tip: Awesome local diner next door -- Soda Tiquicia!! Best Tico food, cheap prices!
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled solo
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Thank robg7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2013

This hotel offers multiple types of rooms for different kinds of travelers. It is a cheerful, smooth and calm place at once and made me prolong my stay in Santa Teresa several days.
Cuesta Arriba is perfectely suitable to relax and enjoy the beautiful house and pool, as well as the deserted beach at 2 minutes walking distance, furthermore there is access to a well equipped kitchen, a cozy TV room, as well you can rent one of the nice bikes, surf boards or arrange surfing lessons - a great place like an oasis.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled solo
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Thank Heidi R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 25, 2013

had an amazing stay at cuesta arriba !
clean rooms , clean kitchen , free toasts and coffee in the morning , staff and owners are amazing and willing to help you at any time , fresh pool , sweet hamocs , quiet at night !
can't say something bad about cuesta arriba except that we did not stay any longer than one week ! will definatly come back !

  • Stayed: January 2013
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Thank coph123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2013

I am the worst guest you can get. I am on a tight budget, so I need a lot of informations (it is more difficult to get the public bus than the private shuttle). I also lost my key, and was often out of cash because the bank is far away. Barbara and Martin were very helpful and patient with me.

It is a really good place if you want to dedicate yourself to the surf, trying to focus and not be devolved by all the Argentins girls that are around town and the parties that go with it. People here wake up very early to surf and even if it chill at night, there is no late night parties.

The surf and yoga instructor are really great too.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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Thank Colaszib
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 11, 2013

Great location, just minutes from the beach, restaurants, surf school, board rentals, and supermarket. Exceptionally clean rooms, bathrooms, and shared public spaces. Very comfortable bed, "real mattresses" are rare in Costa Rica hostels. Also offer a beautiful pool; a nice option when beach sun/fun has played itself out for the day. Laundry service on location with quick turnaround a plus.
Barbara and Martin are truly wonderful people; very friendly and helpful answering questions, making reservations, booking transportation, etc. Their staff are equally outstanding. Spent nearly three weeks there and loved it.
Book early during the high season because they are frequently sold out, which is no surprise at all because Cuesta Arriba is the best hostel EVER!

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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Thank lkilbourn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Cuesta Arriba Hotel

Address: 150 meters North From La Lora Amarilla, Santa Teresa 5361, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 61 Specialty Lodging in Santa Teresa
Price Range: $21 - $60 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Cuesta Arriba Hotel 2*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Colonial-style hotel surrounded by trees and tropical gardens with unique affordable rooms. The hotel features a communal kitchen,resting areas, hammocks and a sparkling pool in the landscaped garden. Complimentary coffee served at 8AM, free parking and Wireless is also offered. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cuesta Arriba Bed And Breakfast Hostel
Cuesta Arriba Hotel Santa Teresa
Cuesta Arriba Hotel Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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