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“Great place to stay in Playas del Coco”

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Rancho Armadillo Estate
Ranked #2 of 11 Hotels in Playas del Coco
Thousand Oaks, California
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Great place to stay in Playas del Coco”
Reviewed 28 May 2014

We recently went to Costa Rica with friends. We stayed at Racho Armadillo and it was great, Rick the owner was very nice and accommodating. There is a beautiful pool, upper deck area with great ocean and mountain views. The waffle breakfast he had out for us was delicious! He even gave us and unexpected surprise at the end of the trip. I would recommed Rancho Armadillo to everyone.

The drive to the city was about 3 min and 5 minutes to the beach. Playas del Coco is a great place to scuba dive as well.

Room Tip: We had the shark room. Very spacious and open.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Nickf97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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195 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
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English first
Hudson, Wisconsin, United States
Level Contributor
15 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 May 2014

Very fun place set on a mountain overlooking the ocean; amazing views from the private property and a short 5 minute drive to town. I think renting a car is a must because it really allows you to see and explore the area. With that being said, some of the "roads" in the area are very rough. Avoid the donkey trails! At Rick's suggestion, we rented a car through Adobe - good place. Rick is a great host and gave us many ideas of things to do including the best beaches, day trips and restaurants. One of our best meals was the 8 course meal that Rick made us - I would highly recommend that. Some of the highlights of the trip were whitewater rafting, extreme ziplining and sailing. We had lots of fantastic food and drink as well including some really amazing Italian food. We always felt very safe - especially at the hotel itself. The morning breakfast buffet is tasty with lots of fresh fruit. We would definitely stay again at Rancho Armadillo.

Room Tip: We stayed in the 2 bedroom Dolphin/Turtle suite - it is nothing fancy but functional and clean
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jessica V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 April 2014

Make no mistake you're in the middle of a jungle when you stay at Rancho Armadillo, but you'll love it!! Exotic birds, troops of Howler monkeys, scorpions, snakes and other animals may be seen on the property. From the outdoor veranda, you have a clear view of the Gulf of Papagayo, and the sunsets from that vantage point are incredible. From the onset you arrive Rick makes you feel welcome and at home. You're allowed such a free reign on the estate, when the other patrons weren't around, I almost felt as I could own the place. While the property is located about 1.25 miles from Playa del Coco and well within walking distance, Rick is more than accommodating should you require a ride into town. He'll give you his honest opinions of where to eat, drink, visit, etc. He was so instrumental in helping us plan our various day excursions for SCUBA diving, tours, and lazy beach lounging days. The rooms are quaint, very clean and comforting. While I did not bring my kids on this trip, I intend on returning with them in tow the next time around and we'll stay at Rancho Armadillo. It's refreshing to know that places like this exist. You won't be disappointed.

Room Tip: I don't think there's a bad bungalow on the property.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Victor S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clifton, New Jersey
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 24 April 2014

I'll make this short and to the point, if you are going to the west coast of Costa Rica, this is the place to stay, a bit off the beaten path, you get a personal service from the owner Rick. He knows Playa de Coco like the back of his hand and gives an honest word on where to go and what to do....Listen to him he won't steer you wrong.

Rancho Armadillo itself is a warm inviting place, up in the jungle a bit..Howler monkeys, exotic birds and other wildlife are right around you, the rooms are quaint, clean, and comforting, You can't go wrong here

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank josephma13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Staten Island, New York
1 review
Reviewed 1 April 2014

Chose Rancho Armadillo based on reviews and it stood up to its name. Located in a great little town with many restaurants and only five minutes from the beach. My husband and I went for our honeymoon. We felt very safe as we did many tours and activities. The best part of Rancho Armadillo was the owner, Rick. Rick was the most helpful person imaginable. He emailed us prior to our arrival to make sure we had everything set up. He set up all our tours, drivers, lunches and made dinner reservations. He even drove us to some of the restaurants to make sure we were taken care of. He was able to teach us so much about Costa Rica and the wildlife surrounding the hotel. Rick also made a 6 course dinner for us on our last night. It was by far the best meal we had on the trip, and may be one of the best meals we ever had to date. We could not have asked for a better experience. We hope one day to return to Rancho Armadillo, and we will never forget what an amazing experience it was.

  • Stayed March 2014
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Helpful?
Thank Eek717
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Napanee, Canada
Level Contributor
39 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 March 2014

My two sisters, my mother and I stayed a week at Rancho Armadillo to celebrate my mom’s 70th birthday. I chose the place based on Trip Advisor reviews and also, I knew we were looking for a smaller scale, more personal place near the ocean activities. We were surprised when we arrived in Playas del Coco (in March) that the area was desert-like with many cactus and not a lot of green. Once we arrived to the lane-way of Rancho Armadillo, we were greeted with a long lane-way lined with bright pink bougainvillea, iguanas and a lot of birds. Rick the owner showed us to our rooms and we were thrilled to find out that we had the place to ourselves that week! We felt like we guest at Rick’s home. Rick, a trained-chef and Detroit native, was very knowledgeable about everything we wanted to know, from recommended excursions, to a variety of types of restaurants, to wildlife, bird and plant names.
Before we even arrived Rick had sent me a list of suggested attractions and activities and we pre-booked a few of these ahead of time: A snorkel/sail, Stand-up Paddle boarding and a great diving day. Each of these excursions were really fantastic and well run. Rick also helped us with a car rental. Having a car was really necessary if you want to explore the area.
Rancho Armadillo is a rustic retreat…not at all high end, but very interesting with all the wildlife sounds and beautiful views. We saw more wildlife on the grounds of Rancho Armadillo than we did in the national park we visited! The insides of the rooms were a little dark as there was a lot wood. Each of our rooms had a little bar fridge and a coffee maker. Rick checked in with us throughout each day to see if we needed help figuring out what restaurant to choose , or even printing out directions for us to attractions we decided to explore. He even lent us a cell phone because none of us brought one. We absolutely loved all the interesting restaurant recommendations Rick made, from local foods in sodas to a higher end Italian restaurant.
Rick laid out breakfast for us each day with lots of fresh fruit, fruit smoothies, baked goods and a make-your-own waffle station. The breakfast area had a great view of the coast and we were serenaded by many bird songs. Each morning a little raccoon looking creature called a Coatimundis would show up for a piece of raison bread. Beside the breakfast area was a pretty pool area. Beside the pool was a two-story look- out that had comfortable seating, hammocks, free skype where you could phone home, and was great place to have morning coffee.
Two days during our stay there we were so excited that there were howler monkeys on the property and we were even awakened by their early morning calls one day. Rick gave us a tour of his grounds one afternoon and pointed all the exotic things he was growing from cashews, to mangos and bananas.
One night we requested Rick to make us his famous dinner, and it was definitely one of the highlights of our trip. The dinner was many courses of delicious Costa Rican foods. He served us appetizers on the pool deck , so we could watch the sunset, while listening to romantic music, followed by main courses in the eating area, followed by desserts back on the pool deck for stargazing. He even set up his telescope and pointed out a lot of things to us.
During our week there, we were welcome to use the outdoor kitchen and did end up storing wine and snacks there. We also used the blender to make pina coladas Rick also had a fridge with an assortment of cold drinks and water bottles available that you just had to record in a book to add to your tab.
Looking back on the trip, I feel there was little that could be improved upon during this wonderful week except for possibly adding some handrails to the step areas for older guests. There were lots of steps at Rancho, which I actually liked, but for safety reasons, especially in the dark, handrails would be very helpful.
If you are looking for a rustic, smaller- scale, intimate place with stunning views, the sounds of birds and top-notch customer service, Rancho Armadillo is the place for you.

Room Tip: Some of the rooms are adjoining, which would be fantastic for a family. We stayed in the building be...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
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    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank NapaneeFamily5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Victoria, Canada
2 reviews
Reviewed 29 March 2014

We chose to stay at Rancho Armadillo based on tripadvisor reviews and we are very glad we did! We stayed for 5 nights at the start of our Costa Rican holiday. Our room was the "Aquariuim Room" which we found spacious and comfortable for my husband and I and our son. Rick was very helpful in recommending restaurants, activities and providing directions. He cooked us an amazing 7 course dinner on our last evening there which I highly recommend. We loved relaxing in the hammocks and enjoyed the pool. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay!

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank thejones2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Rancho Armadillo Estate

Property: Rancho Armadillo Estate
Address: Playas del Coco, Playas del Coco 5019, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Playas del Coco
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 11 Hotels in Playas del Coco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Rancho Armadillo Estate, a small private mountainside estate overlooking the Gulf of Papagayo. The estate is perfect for couples, families or groups. Our guests feel like they're coming to visit friends who have a really nice place to stay. Our knowledge of Costa Rica ensures our guests experience the best Costa Rica has to offer. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Rancho Armadillo Estate Hotel Playas Del Coco
Rancho Armadillo Estate Costa Rica/Playas Del Coco

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