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“Please give it a clean”

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Walaba Hostel & Beach Houses
Berkeley, California
1 review
“Please give it a clean”
Reviewed 17 January 2014

What a beautiful building...that space is enchanting and the location fantastic. But please give it a spring clean. Mice and rats, and although the cleaning woman did a fantastic job on her daily duties, the place needed a good clean and some maintenance - - fix the boards that one would fall through, put some hooks on the back of bathroom doors, hang some curtains in front of the showers, fix the shower doors. Sort out the water issue - while there 6 people became violently ill.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank dmmeire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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111 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
Date | Rating
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English first
Stockholm
Level Contributor
53 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2014

Reading reviews I was expecting a lot more. I found the hostel to be pretty average. It's reasonably close to the beach but otherwise sort of inconveniently located. Upstairs in the dorms the entire floor shakes a lot anytime someone walks and because the rooms are open (no windows, just big spaces in the walls) noise travels a lot between rooms. I heard so much about the amazing staff here - Vincent was very nice, true, the other 3 staff were much more interested in each other than in guests.

Kind of worryingly ( for a 4 storey building made of wood with lots of people sleeping ) there seems to be little thought given to fire safety. I noticed one fire extinguisher in the kitchen (unmarked) and no others or emergency exit signs or alternative exits to the main staircase.

On the plus side it's really nice to hear the jungle sounds as you lie in bed.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Jack R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Panama City, Panama, Panama
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 January 2014

I did not stay at Walaba, but I had a bad experience with a local bike shop and the staff at Walaba were so amazing, I must share the story.

I was staying in Puerto Viejo and rented a bike from a local shop across from Rockin' J's. The name of the shop is JahRasta Bikes and it has a big sign of a lion and a bike on the side. I rented a bike from the owner, for the two days that I was staying in PV. At first he told me it was $7 a day and I told him it should be lower. He charged me $6, which I still should have gone to another shop, but I had just arrived to town and was unfamiliar with the area.

He gave me a bike and I started going back to my hostel. About 3 minutes later the chain on the bike broke. So, I had to walk it back to him. Fortunately, he was still there and gave me another.

The next day, I was riding to Manzanillo on the newly rented bike. I was enjoying the beautiful Caribbean jungle for about 6km when the bike chain broke again. I started walking to look for a bike shop or someone to help me. That is when I came across Walaba. Walking into Walaba I could feel that all the negativity of the outside world is somehow lost. Everyone has such calming and cheerful spirits. I walked to the reception and was greeted by Vincent who was speaking to a friend in his native tongue, Dutch. Entertained by the foreign body and verbal language I patiently waited a few minutes for them to finish their conversation. I then explained to Vincent what had happened. He told me that I have a couple options; first I can buy a chain from them and ride back to the shop to have the owner pay for my troubles. My second option was to walk it back which was about 1 1/2 hours. Vincent then looked at bus schedule and told me the bus will go back to Puerto in 10 minutes. So, locked the bike at Walabu and proceeded to confront the owner of Jah Bikes. Vincent told me I should have the owner give me a new bike and for him to come pick up his bike at his convenience. I was very thankful for his help and caught the bus back into town.

When I arrived at the bike shop, I explained the story to the owner. He asked me if I had read the contract. I told him that I had. He then said that he would be nice and not make me pay for the chain, but in the contract I signed a deal saying "In event of broken chain, renter is to pay for transportation". He promptly called a friend with a bike rack on his car and told me it was a $10 dollar ride. I was upset, but I don't like confrontation.

When I arrived back at Walabu, Vincent was just about to go into town. If I would have gotten there 10 minutes later, he would have been gone. I told him what the Jah Rasta said, Vincent was not very happy. He asked if he could go to town with me and talk to the owner. So, we went to town and Vincent tried his best to get my what I deserve, my money back. This entire affair I had lost half of my day. The owner ended up kicking us out of his store and calling us names that I don't want to repeat on this website. After being kicked out of his shop there was another Rastafarian who was watching the confrontation. He told us that the owner is from Limon, and has a gangster mentality. He has "Jah" on his building, but the locals refer to him as "Satan". Do not do business with this creature.

I am so happy to have met Vincent and the staff at Walabu. When I return I will absolutely, head directly to Punta Uva and skip out on the hectic, party scene that Puerto Viejo offers. Thank you Walabu, for you kindness and generosity. Dios bendiga.

P.S. If you want to ride a bike Walabu has nice new bikes that will not break down on you!

Have fun, this is a beautiful part of the world and it is a shame that there are a few bad people who take advantage of tourist. They lack the education, that if you do good business you will grow. Fortunately, technology is good enough to spread the word and get him out of business.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Graham B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 December 2013 via mobile

This was the best hostel I have stayed at so far in my travels. It's a beautiful tree house in the rainforest! We stayed in the dorm and I thought the beds were very comfortable. I slept well every night. And every morning I would wake up to howler monkeys and beautiful bird songs.
Vincent is awesome!! And so is his family! We stayed almost a week!
The hostel is a short walking distance to Punta Uva beach, which is also the best beach in the area!!
The only thing I would suggest is bring mosquito repellant because the hostel is all open! But the nets are great around the beds!
Also there aren't many restaurants and the markets close around 6. So prepare for dinner ahead of time!
I would definitely stay here again!!

Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Brittni89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Prague, Czech Republic
Level Contributor
63 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 November 2013

I have never stay so close to the nature in hostel. Amazing feelings to went to bed with nois of surrounding jungle - birds and monkeys. This place is nice peaceful paradise that let you forget to busy life. This place is near to the lovely beach. Also huge positive are very friendly owners!

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Prudix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fergus, Canada
2 reviews
Reviewed 27 October 2013

I stayed in this amazing Hostel for two and a half weeks with my boyfriend. We were looking to relax and take in a new and different culture. So we ended up choosing Costa Rica at random; and I am so thankful for it. This Hostel was more than we could have ever asked for ! Amazing prices, bike rentals, within walking distance to many beautiful beaches, amazing amenities. The staff alone have become personal friends and I hope to stay in touch. They welcome you right in and are there to help you through anything as well as diverge in their own personal life experiences. There is much to do located within a short distance of this Walaba Hostel. My boyfriend and I loved our trip so much and enjoyed this Hostel the most, that we have decided that we are taking a yearly trip to this specific Hostel. Walaba Hostel in Punta Uva is more than amazing !

Room Tip: The higher the room the hotter, but more of a gorgeous view :)
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Shawni Marie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Warrnambool, Australia
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 19 October 2013

We really unwound here, relaxing in the common areas by reading in the hammocks, watching a film at night from their DVD collection, wandering over to the beach during the day or for a swim at dusk. Vincent was so friendly and helpful, even giving us his own herbs and spices to help make our pasta sauce more tasty! There was never a moment when Vincent didn't have time for the guests, always seeming to have the time to sit and talk with them. I'd stay here again.

Room Tip: One of the dorms has a double bed at dorm rates, so if you're a couple, this could be a more eco...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank BronsonV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Walaba Hostel & Beach Houses

Property: Walaba Hostel & Beach Houses
Address: Punta Uva | Puerto Viejo, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca 1451-2050, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #62 of 105 Speciality Lodging in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2 star — Walaba Hostel & Beach Houses 2*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Walaba is a charming property located between the jungle and the beach in the South Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. Our houses Caribbean style, are perfect for people who enjoy the tranquility of nature and love life. Our regular visitors in the area include monkeys, sloths, hummingbirds, toucans and many other species of birds, frogs, lizards along with other critters and creatures that mother nature has offered Costa Rica. We are located 5km from down town Puerto Viejo on your way to Manzanillo. There are buses during the day that will drop you off directly outside the hostel or you can get a taxi from Puerto Viejo. Punta Uva is quite and relaxed with restaurants, markets and bars with a local touch. Walaba Hostel & Beach Houses is a short 2 minute walk from Punta Uva beach; one of the most beautiful and well known beaches in Costa Rica and the world. Playa Punta Uva is surrounded by exotic vegetation and wildlife with pristine crystal blue waters. Protected by a rock cave it’s a perfect beach to swim, snorkel/dive, kayak or just relax and enjoy a book or the company of old and new friends. For those travellers who may want to veer from the typical budget hostel or party environment and feel the real magic of the Caribbean Coast, our multi lingual staff can guide you in any direction you want to travel. We offer: Free Wifi, kitchen, beds with mosquito nets, hot water showers, dining room & hammocks, open air terrace and BBQ, parking, bicycle and snorkel rental, tour desk and shuttle service all set in a Tropical Rainforest Garden. "Walaba Hostel – Your Caribbean Vibe Mixed With The Costa Rican Pura Vida." ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Walaba Hostel & Beach Houses Costa Rica/Limon

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