We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Clean rooms, nice pool, attentive staff. Even the iguana's are friendly.”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Hotel Iguanazul

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 4 more sites!
Hotel Iguanazul
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Santa Cruz
Brooklyn, New York
Level Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Clean rooms, nice pool, attentive staff. Even the iguana's are friendly.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 April 2011

Hotel Iguanazul sits atop a cliff with amazing views of the ocean. Hammocks everywhere provide plenty of opportunity to nap to the sounds of the ocean. A great dog named Biscuit will follow you around except when he's chasing iguana's or staring in their holes waiting patiently for them to emerge.

The beach directly below the hotel is all lava rock and when the tide goes out it there is plenty to explore. Less than 100 yards to the north is one of the most beautiful beaches we've seen in Costa Rica. Playa Blanca is very isolated, leaving you to believe you've discovered the secret beach of Costa Rica. When the tide is out, shallow pools of crystal clear warm water form between the rocks. We could (and did) float there all day just soaking up the sun and the amazing views. There are plenty of shady trees to lay under. (in contrast to the pool area of the hotel which is hot, hot, hot.)

We were looking for a little contrast to our last visit in which we stayed at the JW Marriott Guanacaste just up the road from Hotel Iguanazul in Hacienda Pinella. The Marriott is a beautiful property, arguable one of the best of the JW resorts and worth a visit to any of the 5 restaurants and the high end spa. This time we wanted something a little quieter and a little less American. We found it at Hotel Iguanazul.

The rooms are understated but clean with high ceilings, a/c in most of the rooms and a really nice shower. We stayed poolside which provided sufficient sounds of ocean waves to lull you to sleep. Views from the ocean front rooms are amazing. Better to spend a little more and go poolside or ocean.

You MUST rent a car if you stay here. It's about a 40 minute (and bumpy) drive to Tamarindo for great restaurants. A few miles from Lola's at Playa Avallenas, which we highly recommend. It's only open until 5pm and closed on Mondays. One of our favorite activities is to spend an afternoon at Lola's with great food and smoothies, relaxing, watching some incredible surfing and mingling with Lola, the 300 pound pig that is the restaurants namesake.

My only complaints about Hotel Iguanazul are that the pool furniture could use an upgrade and possibly some cushions and there's a strange lack of sufficient shade around the pool, which is a problem when you're trying to ease into a tan without burning under the 95-degree sun. The food is so-so, but that can be said for most of Costa Rica. The free wi-fi is sufficient for checking email but too weak for skype.

Hotel Iguanazul is a great value, very comfortable and perfect for families or a romantic getaway. Great for the adventurous and confident, do-it-yourself traveler. If you're looking for nightlife, a concierge, easy cab rides and tour buses that will take you everywhere, stay in Tamarindo or at the Marriott.

Room Tip: Skip the garden and go for poolside or ocean.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Gsandnyc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

83 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    26
    31
    13
    7
    6
See reviews for
18
33
2
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
New Jersey
Level Contributor
37 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 December 2010

Stayed over Christmas Dec 2010. Staff very friendly and rooms clean and comfortable, and the restaurant very good. If the waves cooperate you can surf right outside. For more consistent waves Playa Junquillal about a mile south and Playa Negra a little farther north (but you can get there quicker by walking on the beach, just make sure it is low tide). If you are looking for a more happening beach - Lulu's in Playa Avellanas was a lot of fun.We rented boards in Playa Negra - Pargos Surf shop $15 per day. I would highly recommend renting a car as you will be pretty far from most activities. The staff was very helpful in arranging rides as were the locals - but it would be best to have your own.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank NewJerseyCathy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boca Raton, Florida
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 June 2010

Family friendly, casual setting to enjoy the natural Costa Rican beauty. We have stayed here several times before, and have always found it to be a very welcoming vacation spot.

The view from the outdoor restaurant is beautiful. We can eat while watching and listening to the sounds of the Pacific Ocean. The food is wonderful, and they will even make specialties to your liking.

Each time we come down, we stay in different areas on the hotel. The condominiums are great, and so are the studio apartments.

Hey, Roberto, we'll be back again in August!

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank joyceangona
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 April 2010

Iguanazul was the first stop in our Summer vacation to Costa Rica.. it was recommended by a friend and after our stay here, I consider him my best friend. This place is simply amazing... not because it is luxurious, but the view is priceless. The hotel sits atop a cliff, with swings at the edge so that you and your honey can watch an amazing sunset. There are steps down to what will seem like your own private beach, Playa Blanca. We stayed in a room that faced the ocean with big sliding glass doors. We loved it. It is right around the corner from the infamous surf break, Playa Negra, and when your husband is a surfer it is extremely important. The restaurant & bar was a great place to hang out and mixed in with the guests of the hotel, you will find locals, Americans who have purchased their own slice of heaven in the area. The staff was helpful and by the end of our 3 day stay made us feel like family. My 6 year old son had a blast, my surfer husband loved it and well I could go on and on!

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank kkrojas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New york
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 March 2010

The place is pleasant, the staff nice, the owner a first class [--]. He sat outside our room until 3 am drinking and carrying with some guest on until I had to
go out and tell him and his party to shut up

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank bienman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South Wales UK
Level Contributor
14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 December 2009

I am a little biased, I have stayed at the Iguanazul 6 times now. We got engaged there and then a year later married there (wonderful day, no hassle just lovely).
It is a clean basic but beautiful place. The staff are always helpful and friendly. The food is very good for such a remote place.
We ended up there by accident in 2003, we thought we booked a place in Tamarindo on the net (first time in Costa Rica). 6 hours of hard driving (it has improved every year) from San Jose, arrived just in time to see the sunset, that made it all worth it.
It is not a busy place but you will feel at home in minutes. How many places can you have a white beach to yourself?
Not a place for singles / groups of youngsters as there is very little to do at night (bar shuts about 10 ish, a late one is 12). There is still plenty to do in the surrounding area. Having a 4X4 helps.

  • Stayed December 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank redwill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Costa Rica
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 August 2008

If you are looking for an out of the way relaxing time, this hotel is great. If you are looking for parties and music, this is probably not the place.

My wife and I live in Costa Rica and took a 3 day weekend looking for some R & R. We normally go to another hotel on Junquiall but since it is low season there were minimally staffed and not well kept up. So, it worked to our benefit.

The Staff is friendly and very accommodating. The food was very good and the rooms were more than adequate. Everything worked well, no bugs, and the pool area was very clean.

It is worth it to spend a little more for the oceanside rooms. What an incredible view to wake up, draw back the curtain, and lay in bed staring out at the ocean. It doesn't get any better! In addition, if you like to walk on the beach, do a little swimming it is good, not great. The great thing is you will have miles of beach almost to yourself!

Playa Junquiall is an out of the way place, for a quite time. There is a lot to do in Costa Rica so i would not spend all my time here, however, a few days here gives you a great taste of the beach life.

I recommend it highly.

P.S. For dog lovers there is an incredible dog named Bisquit He will make your stay even greater.

  • Stayed August 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank HavingSomeFun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Santa Cruz
1.6 mi away
Hotel Playa Negra
Hotel Playa Negra
#1 of 5 in Santa Cruz
4.0 of 5 bubbles 132 reviews
1.0 mi away
Guacamaya Lodge
Guacamaya Lodge
#2 of 4 in Playa Junquillal
4.5 of 5 bubbles 123 reviews
0.8 mi away
Mundo Milo Eco Lodge
Mundo Milo Eco Lodge
#1 of 4 in Playa Junquillal
5.0 of 5 bubbles 200 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
8.7 mi away
Hotel Tamarindo Diria
Hotel Tamarindo Diria
#11 of 21 in Tamarindo
4.0 of 5 bubbles 2,402 reviews
9.4 mi away
Azul Ocean Club Hotel
Azul Ocean Club Hotel
#1 of 1 in Playa Azul
4.5 of 5 bubbles 247 reviews
8.3 mi away
Cala Luna Luxury Boutique Hotel & Villas
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Hotel Iguanazul? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hotel Iguanazul

Property: Hotel Iguanazul
Address: Playa Junquillal, Santa Cruz 50305, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Santa Cruz
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Santa Cruz
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Iguanazul 3*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Iguanazul is located in the northern province of Guanacaste, on the Nicoya Peninsula at Playa Junquillal. We are 35km south of Tamarindo, on a cliff overlooking the beautiful Pacific Ocean The Hotel Iguanazul is a quiet boutique hotel where you can enjoy the white sands of Playa Blanca (part of Costa Rica's Blue Flag program), world class surf breaks, great snorkeling, spectacular sunsets and much more! We have relationships with several tour operators to satisfy your adventurous side and can arrange any excursion you with. Our nearby beaches are all pristine and you can walk virtually undisturbed for hours and hours. Book now to enjoy the beautiful Hotel Iguanazul! ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Traveltool, S.L.U., Travel Republic (UK), Priceline and HotelQuickly so you can book your Hotel Iguanazul reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Hotel Iguanazul Guanacaste, Costa Rica

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing