Heaven. Pure, true heaven.
Everything about this place met or exceeded my expectations. The people, the room, the surrounding area all charming and beautiful.
Making the Reservation and checking in:
I contacted the hotel back in Feb about staying over the holidays. My query was responded to by David and he is pretty much who I dealt with when it came to the room reservation. He is wonderfully sweet and was the first person we met upon check in. He showed us to our room and then showed us around the property. He, and every else at the font desk were always available and happy to help if you needed anything or had a question.
It's very nice going to a place where it is obvious that everyone loves their jobs and that is very evident here.
We stayed in the Red Frog room and I am very happy about our selection. The bathroom of course as the beautiful Red Frog mosaic which the room gets it's name from. It was spacious and had a very nice ceiling fan that really came in handy. The room is located in a building separate from the main hotel but still on Banana Azul property which is something we actually liked about it. We also had a large private porch which we spent a lot of time of. You can also get a good wi-fi signal on the porch if you bring a computer.
We ate the majority of our meals at the hotel. Food in this part of CR is very expensive and the prices at the hotel where better then eating in town. Plus the amount of food that they gave you was more then enough. Breakfast was of course included in the room rate. It was always delicious and fresh. A standard lunch menu was available every day with nachos, sandwiches, burgers etc. with tax lunch was about $7.50 per person. Dinner always had a meat or vegetarian option and came with a salad and dessert. With tax it was about $11.50 per person.
We never had a bad meal there. It also nice that they would just charge your room so you didn't have to carry any cash.
Of course Franklin's Mojito's are AMAZING!! Best I have ever tasted.
The main hotel:
The main hotel building is open and airy. Always clean with plenty of comfortable chairs. The plunge pool and main pool are super refreshing on those hot days. There are always hammocks up by the beach which are great for relaxing. A stack of fresh, clean beach towels are always available. As I said before everyone behind the desk was very kind and helpful.
Gecko Trail Adventures:
If you want to plan excursions or tours while you are in CR this is the place to go. I worked with Maythe and have nothing but wonderful things to say about her. I never waited long for a response and she was always very sweet with me and all of my questions. They set every up for us from the hotel we stayed at when we first flew into San Jose, the Interbus to get to/from Banana Azul and all of of our tours and activities. The prices were very reasonable and everyone there knew a lot about the area. They were always available to answer questions about anything you can think of.
Before I go I would like to address some of the things people have said in other reviews that were not so great about the hotel:
* The people who work there love what they do and it shows.
* The towels that we had in our room are nicer then the ones I have at my house. Everyday we were brought clean fresh ones and always had more then enough to go around
* Who needs a jacuzzi when it's 90-something degrees outside? The plunge pool came in handy more then once when I needed to cool down after a long hike.
* For the price we paid for the room the bed was right on par. You are not checking into a Westin or Sheraton you are checking into a small, locally owned hotel in a jungle.
If you are looking for upgraded amenities, fine linens and someone to wait on you hand and foot then this may not be the place for you.
But, if you are looking for a place that is friendly, well cared for and very reasonably priced surrounded by stunning views and clean, soft sand beach then you'll be in heaven.
To Colin, Roberto, David, Maythe and everyone at Banana Azul and Gecko:
Words cannot describe how blessed we feel to have been guests at your hotel. Your hospitality went above and beyond and we wish nothing but the best for all you in the future. Thank you for making our trip and our first Christmas in the Caribbean something we will never forget.
- 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
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Banana Azul Hotel
- Banana Azul Puerto Viejo
- Hotel Banana Azul Costa Rica/Limon