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“Very relaxing time at Banana Azul”
Review of Hotel Banana Azul

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Hotel Banana Azul
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 28 February 2014

We loved most everything about the Banana Azul. The beach was awesome. The restaurant was also excellent.The only thing that kept us from giving it the top rating was the lack of privacy on the "private patio", which was not very private. The only thing that separates the patios is a movable, temporary 6 foot screen. We could hear our neighbors and were afraid to play our music outside as we didn't want to disturb them. Other than that, we really enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Solar J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 25 February 2014

I have read the neg and pos reviews and did so before booking. However, some close friends of ours recommended the place and we took their advice and we are glad we did. The Caribbean side of Costa Rica is not as developed as some of the other areas and thus has a different feel than other areas. No hotel is perfect.We had a positive experience and would definitely return. We found the staff to be extremely helpful and polite. The room and grounds were clean. We loved the laid back and (we thought), quiet atmosphere. We could hear some footsteps above us but no talking, etc. The place is small and can't get too loud. Other guests we talked to while there also loved the place and gave no complaints. We liked the food and ate all our meals there, no need to go elsewhere. We stayed in the Red Frog room and would stay in that room again. My only complaint would be that their mixed drinks are not the best. However, I do not consider this to be a big problem. More constructive criticism than complaint. Their house white wine was extremely good and I prefer that anyway. We took several tours while there and loved them all. The chocolate tour that is at The Caribbean is a+ . We highly recommend it. Everyone travels with different expectations. We went there realizing the complaints as well as the raves. We definitely are on the rave side.

Room Tip: We were in Red Frog and loved it. especially the hot tub, which was very relaxing.
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank lbc4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 February 2014

We had a beautiful six night stay at the Hotel Banana Azul (We visited the second week in February). We arrived around 7PM after a LONG trek from San Jose. (Side note: If you’re looking for a private transfer from SJO to Puerto Viejo, I HIGHLY recommend Omar with Transfers Pura Vida. He was waiting at the airport with our name on a sign, he stopped in San Jose so we could have lunch, and the price couldn’t be beat. Only $200 one way—which was by far the cheapest private transfer I came across).

Upon arriving at the hotel, the staff was extremely welcoming. They helped us bring all of our luggage up to our rooms and gave us a tour of the property. The four of us stayed in the Sloth Cabina rooms which were just perfect for us. I probably wouldn’t recommend the rooms unless you know the people staying next door because they’re not very private. It was great for us because we loved the ease of walking in between the two rooms using the balcony—but the openness might be a little awkward if you didn’t know your neighbors. Just my two cents! I thought the hammock on the balcony was such a nice touch. I can’t even begin to tell you how many hours of our vacation I spent just laying in the hammock, reading a book, napping, listening to the waves roll in, feeling the breeze…it was heaven!

A quick note about the A/C: I was very apprehensive about staying on a property in the middle of the Caribbean with no A/C. I even called two weeks before we were set to arrive to request a room with A/C….but to no avail. Let me tell you, my worries were completely unjustified. I don’t think there was ever a time when I thought “I really need A/C right now.” Nope. We left our doors open, and it was amazing. No creepy crawly bugs, no mosquitoes, no heat. Just a light breeze…I even got a little chilly at one point. No A/C was needed…truly!

The Banana Azul property was absolutely stunning. Over breakfast, or while waiting for a taxi cab, I would gaze out over the lush green plants and tropical flowers in awe. The landscaping was amazing. Also, the receptionist desk workers were so friendly and so helpful. Anything we needed was taken care of….they called us taxi cabs, they made change for our large bills, they gave advice for great restaurants in Puerto Viejo, etc. They even let me print off my boarding pass the night before we were set to depart. Everyone was so kind, and went above and beyond. I had my 24th birthday while visiting Costa Rica, and David and Joselyn even brought out a cake and sang to me. The staff was so wonderful and thoughtful. I also wanted to give a quick shout out to the awesome workers at the Gecko Trails Adventure desk. We probably changed our tour itinerary 3-4 times during our stay and it didn’t phase them one bit. They were so kind and accommodating. I highly recommend using them!

The only *minor* bit of constructive criticism I could give Banana Azul would be in regards to the service in the restaurant. It was a little slow at times, but part of that is my North American mindset of “wham, bam, thank you ma’am.” In Costa Rica, things move more slowly than they do back in the States. So once I got used to that, I was able to relax and enjoy the slower pace.
On our last night, we got to speak to Colin for a little while and we couldn’t quit gushing to him over how much we enjoyed Banana Azul. Colin, you had an amazing vision and I feel privileged to have been able to stay at your lovely hotel.

Pura Vida!
Lindsey

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Lindsey S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2014

We only stayed 2 nights, but we didn't want to leave! The gardens are beautiful, the beach is only a short walk away, and it's very clean and relaxing. We stayed in room 9 (garden bath) and it was great, it has AC and a big garden/bathroom. It is a bit noisy, not terrible, you can hear what's going on upstairs, in the reception, the kitchen and the hall, so if you have trouble sleeping I wouldn't recomend it, but it wasn't a problem for us. Leo, Jimmy and David are very nice, helpful and friendly! The food...breakfast was ok, lunch not so great,to be fair we only had lunch the first day and we didn't like it, so we didn't stay for dinner. Puerto Viejo is only a 20 minute walk on the beach, or 5 minutes by car, a taxi is $4 or 2000 colones to Puerto Viejo, $14 to Punta Uva or $18 to Manzanillo, just go to the reception and they will call it for you. We ate at Tamaras and its REALLY good, we had rice and beans, caribbean shrimp and fish, it was all very good, oh and try their Pati! I would recommend Banana Azul and am definetly going back!

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank kathe1690
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 February 2014

This is an amazing place. From the first hello from Owner Collin to the smiles and greetings daily for 8 days....we had a great time. Their food is delicious. The beach is perfect. And the room and views incredible. This is the perfect place to unwind. They offer bikes for an 8 minute ride into the town of Puerto Viejo. My partner and I did not want to leave after our 8 day visit. Please consider Banana Azul for your next visit to Costa Rica.

Room Tip: All have wonderful terrace views of the pool and beach beyond. Two rooms on the first level include...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank FLOWERDEN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 February 2014 via mobile

My husband and I stayed at Banana Azul for a week at the beginning of Feb. This was our 5th consecutive year staying here. It goes without saying that we absolutely love it!
We love Banana Azul for the location, beautiful pool and gardens, reasonably priced food, high-end cocktails and wonderful staff. A lot of the staff actually recognize us from year to year and that makes us feel kind of special.
You won't find a hotel this nice and reasonably priced anywhere else in the world!

Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
1  Thank l_mitchell85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 February 2014 via mobile

Banana Azul is nothing short of amazing. The grounds were spectacular. The beach was so quiet it seemed private. The staff was perfect (our personal standout/favorite was David). The food was great on site though I do recommend venturing into town. If you decide to do lunch on site, try a staff lunch. It never disappointed!

Can't say enough good things about our trip!

Thank you to the staff at banana azul for a wonderful vacation!

Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Cleveland25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Banana Azul

Address: Playa Negra, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
#1 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
#1 Family Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Price Range: £45 - £140 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Banana Azul 3.5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Banana Azul hotel is a small and simple hotel north of town on Playa Negra. The small boutique hotel has been created with care using local products and a philosophy that emphasizes relaxation. We cater to adults, 16 years and over. Blooming gardens adorn the property, as does several freely-hanging hammocks, providing the perfect spot for afternoon napping or leisurely reading. A meandering pond inhabited by fish and turtles flows through portions of the property adding a lighter element to the ongoing natural soundtrack of waves crashing against the shoreline. The hotel consists of 22 beautiful guest rooms with private baths, fans (some with A/C), and free WiFi. Most rooms are on the second floor of the main building, and open onto a large veranda with sweeping ocean views and of the garden. Banana Azul offers its guests a quaint restaurant that serves a complimentary filling breakfast, variety of lunch options and refreshing drinks throughout the day and a relaxing three entre dinner option in a romantic atmosphere at night. Caribe Fun Tours is on site to assist with tours and transportation needs and can assist with a variety of package options including visits to the Arenal Volcano, canopy tours, snorkeling trips, and even rafting excursions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Banana Azul Hotel
Banana Azul Puerto Viejo
Hotel Banana Azul Costa Rica/Limon

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