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“Home away from home”
Review of Manala Hotel

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Manala Hotel
Ranked #12 of 26 Hotels in Santa Teresa
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Home away from home”
Reviewed May 8, 2012

What a gorgeous property! The grounds are immaculate. The bungalows are stylish, spacious, comfortable, and very clean. The pool & outdoor shower are heaven after a long hot day. You can only get the wi-fi signal in the restaurant & pool area, but why would you sit in your room when you can lounge on the patio and check your emails? The hotel is at the quieter, northern end of Santa Teresa. The beach is just across the road, down a short tree-lined path. There is a market and a few good restaurants within easy walking distance, but it's a bit farther to the center of town and the Mal Pais crossroads where there is more to see & do. You'll definitely want to rent an ATV from the front desk to get out & explore. I highly suggest taking an ATV out to Montezuma and hiking to the waterfalls -- it's absolutely beautiful.

What really made the Manalá feel like home for us was Laura & her wonderful staff. Ronald and Fabián were super nice, answering our many questions and making great suggestions. And then there's Marco, the hotel restaurant's owner, manager, and budding chef extraordinaire... He takes such great care of each and every guest. And every dish -- from fruit at breakfast to fresh fish at dinner to the creative "surprise dessert" -- was beautifully prepared and presented. He makes a mean caipirinha, and even better conversation. We are STILL talking about the delicious homemade fish soup he brought us on our last night. If this were L.A. and if I were a food critic (a girl can dream), I'd name Marco and his restaurant "The One to Watch". I'd also probably try to set him up with one of my single girlfriends!

A great hotel is one that makes you want to stay forever... My boyfriend & I stayed at Manalá for 4 nights and that wasn't nearly long enough. This place is truly a hidden gem, and the people there make it so. We're already planning our next trip!

Room Tip: All the bungalows are great -- #6, 7, 8 are furthest from the road, but even #1-5 are quiet and peac...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Bianca C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MANALAHOTEL, Propietario at Manala Hotel, responded to this review, May 11, 2012
Wow!! Thank you Bianca!! This really motivate us! We really appreciate this comments. The idea is that every person that comes to the Hotel, leaves like Feliz and you did. This is one of the best comment we receive and because of that we know we are going to be the best in town! You are more than welcome, so if in the future you want to come back again. We will give you the best treatment! Thanks again for your honestly and please come again! Best regards!
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336 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 (73)
Date | Rating
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English first
Reno NV
Level 5 Contributor
44 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2012

We split up a week between Santa Teresa & Mal Pais, and Hotel Manala was our choice in Santa Teresa. Overall, I thought it was a good value.

Pros - Super close access to the best beach in Santa Teresa or Mal Pais. Cute, spacious villas. Great shower/ bathroom. Beautiful heated pool (heated pools are rare in this area). Quiet. Close to store and 2 or 3 good restaurant options. Friendly service. Got occasional glimpses of howler monkeys in the trees above.

One suggestion: We wish we had realized earlier that Marco at the restaurant could prepare cocktails. This place would have gotten 5 stars from me for sure if there had been a cocktail menu anywhere (chalk board on the wall by the restaurant, or printed and available by restaurant), and if we could have enjoyed cocktails by the pool (even just served in plastic if you don't want glass by the pool).

Overall, I would return here when staying in Santa Teresa in the future. LOVED the proximity to Playa Santa Teresa!

Room Tip: We had Villa #1, which was right by the entrance. Great for beach access, but not as close to the...
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Martini_A_Go_Go
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MANALAHOTEL, Propietario at Manala Hotel, responded to this review, May 10, 2012
Hi,

Thank you very much for your review. With all those pros, I thought you had a very great experience in our Hotel. We try to make our guest feel like Home, giving the best recommendations in town and have a good customer service. With that we think you can have an excellent vacations. We promise that for next time we are going to have a Coctail Menu and you´ll be the most happy person in Town!! Thanks again for the review and we will improve every time more with suggestions like yours.
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Reno, Nevada
Level 5 Contributor
57 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed May 5, 2012 via mobile

Super cute option for Santa Teresa. You get to stay in these adorable bungalows as a guest of the Manala. Friendly folks behind the front desk. There is a restaurant on the property and a lovely swimming pool. The beach access directly across the street led to our favorite beach of the trip. I would definitely return

  • Stayed May 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank CraigNV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MANALAHOTEL, Reception at Manala Hotel, responded to this review, May 7, 2012
We are located in nice part of Santa Teresa, with many facilities for our guests, and different activities to enjoy the area and its beautis.
Thanks for good comments, hope to see you soon.
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Fort worth
1 review
Reviewed April 24, 2012

We had a very good time at the Manala, the people where great. Very clean and up to date rooms. Special thanks to Marco, what a great cook and freind. He when out of his way to make us fat and happy. The thing i can suggest would be coffee makers in the room. No coffee the first morning for us early riesers was tough. But Marco took care of us. Before he went home he made a big thermous of hot coffee and left it in front of our door and every morning we had hot coffee.....
We will be back, thank you Laura and all your staff. You have a truly great set up, in a perfect little town.

Room Tip: all the rooms are good
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Bob Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MANALAHOTEL, Recepcionista at Manala Hotel, responded to this review, April 26, 2012
That is our purpose, to help travelers in everything they need. We are really happy when huespeds are enjoying the vacations until the end. We hope to see you soon.
Thank you very much.
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San Jose, Costa Rica
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2012

I loved this little and cosy hotel since I arrived. It was nicely decorated and clean, and the staff was always helpful and kind. It is located in one of the best areas of Santa Teresa, and very close to the beach entrance. In spite there are many good options to dinner out in town, the hotel´s restaurant was actually very good, and Marco, the ownner, was always willing to give the best service.
Thank you for an enjoyable stay!

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Paula D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MANALAHOTEL, Reception at Manala Hotel, responded to this review, April 10, 2012
Thank you very much for your good comments. It is a pleasure for us that you enjoyed while you stayed at Manalá Hotel. It will be very nice to receive you again in our instalations.
Thanks again
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Tomball, Texas
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed March 28, 2012

The Manala was the perfect setting for us for our adventure in Costa Rica. The hotel is EXACTLY as described and the pictures online are very accurate. The bungalows are nice in size, and clean with a large walk in shower. You are very close to the beach (a walk across the street)--a total of about 150-200 yards from room to beach. Beautiful surroundings with lots of trees (howler monkeys were visible in the mornings and evenings), and a nice pool--which was never crowded. Many times were the only ones in the pool and it was nice to relax there at the end of an adventurous day! Although a little outside the town of Santa Teresa, you are within walking distance to several good restaurants and a supermarket. There is a mini fridge in the room which is great so you can stock up on drinks and snacks. I highly recommend you rent an ATV so you can get to Downtown Santa Teresa/Mal Pais quickly. Laura and Ronald were AWESOME hosts. We went to them with questions about the tides, when and where to surf, how to rent ATV's, where to get good massages and places to eat. They gave us recommendations for all these things and even booked several of these things for us. It was a great comfort to have such great help, since we were not familiar with the area. Even prior to our stay, they responded quickly to emails and made us feel very comfortable about our trip to Santa Teresa. ----The continental breakfast was exceptional, as was Marco's dinner menu---we had his fresh catch of the day one evening at the on-site restaurant and it was FANTASTIC!!!!! We would DEFINATELY stay there again!!!!!!!!!!

Room Tip: I think any room would be great. We were in bungalow 3. It was a great location for us. A little fur...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Kirsten A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MANALAHOTEL, Recepction at Manala Hotel, responded to this review, March 30, 2012
Thank you very much !!!
We are really glad that you enjoyed your days at Manalá Hotel. Santa Teresa is a nice place for doing many different activities. It is a pleasure for us to help our guests making reservations, renting ATV´s or what they need.
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Burlington, Vermont
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 24, 2012

This hotel was perfect in so many ways. My husbands and I stayed recently for 6 nights. The bungalows were really nice: clean, comfortable, large, and private. Ronald provided excellent service from the moment we booked to the moment we left. He was so helpful booking excursions and giving suggestions for restaurants in town. Our favorite restaurant was Kika just down the street. Marco and the restaurant on site were great as well. The breakfast every morning was really good. We usually ate what was included with the price of the bungalow, but also tried some items off the menu. We ate dinner here a couple times and loved talking to Marco.
We went zip lining in Montezuma, surfing in Santa Teresa, and snorkeling about 30 minutes from town. The zip lining was awesome, but could have passed on the snorkeling. Ronald hooked us up with a great surf instructor just down the road.
I can't say enough about how great this place is. We would definitely consider returning in the near future. We often like to travel to new places and stay at new hotels, but this one was pretty perfect. It is a very short walk to the best beach around. The sunsets were unbelievable.
Getting to Santa Teresa was an experience in itself. We flew into Liberia and rented a car for the four hour drive to Manala (definitely needed 4X4). If we returned to Costa Rica, we would fly into San Jose and take another plane to Tambor for a much shorter drive. The dirt roads are like nothing we have ever seen before.
We were pleasantly surprised that US dollars were widely accepted. We never ran into an issue using dollars and were even able to get them from the local ATM. The exchange rate was pretty good if you happened to change money into colones.
We always felt safe and met a lot of great people traveling to Santa Teresa. If you are contemplating where to stay in Costa Rica, I think you would be very happy with Manala and Santa Teresa!

Room Tip: We stayed in #7. It was perfect. Right across from the pool but still plenty of privacy.
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ashstx14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MANALAHOTEL, Propietario at Manala Hotel, responded to this review, March 29, 2012
Hi!

In name of the Hotel, I really appreciate what you wrote about us! Ronald spoke me about you and we are really happy with your stayed. Also many thanks for this comment, because this will make us improve and try to give the best service in town. Thanks you very much and you are more than welcome for future visit!!
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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 Manala Hotel

Property: Manala Hotel
Address: | 800 meters north of the soccer field of Santa Teresa, Santa Teresa 2640, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Family Hotel in Santa Teresa
#14 Romantic Hotel in Santa Teresa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Manala Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Eight mediterranean style Boungalows in a lush tropical setting; private bathrooms, hot water,air conditoner,wifi,tv, minifridge,ceiling fan, laptop safebox, parking area and 24 hrs security, restaurant and pool with jacuzzi. Our incedible location so close to the beach with the best beach break and our facilities, makes Manalà Hotel the perfect destiny for the best holiday ever. Open 2010. 800 meters North from Santa Teresa soccer fieldde fútbol de Santa Teresa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Manala Hotel Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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