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“Wonderful new hotel with just a few glitches”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Hotel San Bada

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Hotel San Bada
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
St. Catharines, Canada
Level Contributor
18 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Wonderful new hotel with just a few glitches”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 January 2012

This new hotel is luxurious with a staff who always go the extra mile. Large room with a wonderful king size beds and all of the bells and whistles that you could want.

The restaurant is excellent and prices arw comparable to the other restaurants in town.

Excellant views. From our room we can see the Manuel Antonio beach and Pacific ocean plus parts of the national park. Literally the hotel entrace is 2 steps from the park entrance. Deer were grazing at the gate when we arrived.

There were a few minor glitches which probably are just part of the hotel's learning curve as it has been open less than 6 months. However we have been to Costa Rica seven times and would have no issue whatsoever with returning.

  • Stayed January 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank edkravcik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (229)
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English first
Edmonton, Canada
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 January 2012

Fantastic views and bordering the national park, this hotel is in a great location. It is also walking distance to the beaches and town. The rooms were very comfortable, and the staff were helpful and friendly, albeit slow at times. The beach access is closed after dark, but the pool stays open. The wildlife in the park is very used to people and will come very close and is easy to see.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank rpimm_22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Novi Sad, Serbia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 January 2012

We stayed in this hotel during the Christmas week. Even though the location, grounds, and architecture of San Bada are beautiful, the workmanship in the rooms is poor. There was a heavy odor of mildew and chemicals in our room. During breakfast, the hotel ran out of coffee, juice and cereal after 9 AM daily. The common areas of the hotel were very clean, but, the guestrooms were not maintained well. In our room, there was a thick layer of construction dust on the shelves, and hangers. Our beds were not made until late afternoon, and there was no turndown service. Most of the time there was no Internet connection in the guestrooms, or common areas.The pool is nice, but the water in the jaccuzzi was cold. There were no beach towels at the pool area. The pathway from the hotel to the beach is muddy, neglected an littered. Since the rate of our room was high, I expected better services.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank alexiszr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dporrascr, Director of Sales at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 19 January 2012
Dear Friend,

Greetings from Manuel Antonio!

Thank you for taking your time and write a review of your recent visit to our hotel. We are happy that you pointed our great things about our hotel such as the location, grounds and specially the beautiful architecture that our property has. About the problems with the housekeeping procedures, we have talked with the housekeeping manager in order to work immediately in the improvement of all the things you mentioned.

On the breakfast, which is a buffet and complimentary to the rate we always try to replenish all the bar as soon as we see that we are running out with something immediately, during that day we might suffered some delay but the most it took us 5 minutes to replenish, we are working on this for avoiding this problem for future stays. Regarding the towels, we offer beach and pool towels for the use of our guests that can be find in the reception area right next to the pool.

Thank you again and we hope you can visit us in future, that way we will be able to show you our improvements in everything you mentioned.

Warm regards,

Your friends at Hotel San Bada!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago IL
Level Contributor
15 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2012

We stayed here over our honeymoon. It was in the perfect location which is important to us. It is right next door to the national park and has a short cut to the beach which took about three minutes to walk. There are no hotels on the beach front so this one was the closest. We were also able to walk down the main road to the different places to eat, catch a bus into Quepos, and shop a little.

The hotel, although only a year old, does look like it needs some touch-ups here and there. The slide and the bridge over the pool were cracking and the bathrooms by the pools were rarely working. We never ate dinner there but we did have lunch and breakfast and it was good. The breakfast is included so you can never complain about fresh fruit, coffee, eggs, toast, etc. The staff was very kind. Andres learned our names the first day and greeted us every morning and Aldo at the 6th floor bar was very kind.

We were on the second floor and could not see the ocean but from the 6th floor bar you could. We played cards up there one night and watched the sunset - it was very nice. We also saw monkeys from our balcony which is always fun!

Overall, the location was great, the staff was friendly. There are some need for updating already and the maid service could have been a little faster (often did not clean until 5pm or so) but I would recommend the hotel to others.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ShelleySChiTown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sacramento, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2012

This hotel was our first stop on my family's first trip to Costa Rica. We were thrilled by the wildlife viewing from our third floor room and the rooms themselves were very nice. At sunset we could not decide if we wanted to stay on the front balcony and watch the squirrel monkeys and howlers or take the quick walk to the beach for the sunset. We opted for the sunset and then ate dinner at one of the fun restaurants nearby, and then stocked up on water and snacks at the market next door.

The location is great if you plan on checking out Manuel Antonio National Park. We just rolled out of bed the next day to get in line for the park before 7:00 a.m. because you have to get their early or you may wait a long time to get in. (Tip: hire the guide while you are in line for the park, not from any hotel where you'll pay a higher price. The guides are well worth it.)

The staff were all incredibly helpful and they really went out of their way to please. Since this was our first stop in Costa Rica, we had lots of questions about logistics and tours and the office staff could not have been more helpful. (We really enjoyed the Mangrove tour.)

Our rooms were very clean and we had enough towels. We found the maids to be hard-working and responsive. (Being a hotel maid must be a thankless job most of the time so we always tip our maids well the first night.)

A few hours away from Manuel Antonio on our drive to the Osa, my son realized he left his ipod on the night stand. I knew it must be lost forever so I didn't even bother to call. Well, the day after returning home from our trip we got a call from Christian at Hotel San Bada telling us that the maid found the ipod left behind and they are mailing it to us free of charge. That's great service!

We would surely stay here again.

Room Tip: Third or fourth floor had perfect monkey perspective
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank 47hopskipjump47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DanteKim, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 10 January 2012
Dear guest,

Thank you for your wonderful review and sharing with others your experience at Hotel San Bada!

We are very happy and honored to receive such a great opinion about our Hotel during your vacations in Costa Rica. We are very committed to bring out the best and warm customer service we can, willing to be your friends in Costa Rica while you are far from home.

Your comments are very accurate about our location; the best just right next to the most beautiful beach in Costa Rica! We are pleased that this pro made a huge difference during your vacations.

We also appreciate your kind words, our maids have a great responsibility and they do understand that our guests are the most important aspect of the Hotel.

Thank you again for sharing your thoughts and we hope to definitely welcome you back again in the near future!

Sincerely,

Your friends at Hotel San Bada
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
163 reviews
154 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 129 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 January 2012

There are some truly great things about this hotel & then some huge negatives. The positives:
- fabulous location - right next to the entrance to Manuel Antonio park, easy walk to the beach, grocery store, souvenir shops and several restaurants - I do think best location in town which for me is important.
- nice rooms - the rooms are decent sized, a larger than normal refrigerator, in-room safe & coffee maker, nice bathroom with combination shower/tub.
- helpful front desk staff -- I got to know several of them & they were very nice & truly tried to help. A special mention for Hante who sincerely sought to help & drove me to ATM - first one didn't have money & then to further one into Quepos & provided info about area. He was our go-to person.
- tours - I had them book dolphin/snorkel sail & also surfing lessons -- the catamaran for the dolphin/snorkel sail was definitely the nicest one we saw & the surfing lessons were fabulous & highlight of the entire trip!

The negatives:
- maid service -- exceptionally bad - rooms were not ready when arrived (after check-in time) and consistently frustrating. Pay extra for more than 2 people per room - yet, only provide 2 towels & one hand-towel per room. Repeatedly asked for extra towels to just get enough for 1 per person. We had 3 rooms & 2 of them were told they could not get extra towels. I asked multiple times just to get one per person. First day in my room- did not even get maid service - arrived around 5pm just as getting out of cold shower & took towels & did not replace & since we were in room - did not clean. Next day - before 8am requested maid service in morning, called again around 1pm & they showed up around 5pm (we left room as it needed to be cleaned) & did not even empty trash cans. Pointed to overflowing trash cans & asked to be removed & maid just responded "no inglese" - while I do not expect the maids to speak english, I do expect them to provide minimum maid services.
- plumbing - no hot water in afternoons & one morning - no water at all. I don't like cold showers. While water was restored in about half hour on day without water....not great experience.
- restaurant/bar - I'm not a fan of breakfast buffets & this one did not impress (except fruit & coffee were great). Afternoon 2 for 1 happy hour just meant one drink split between 2 glasses - literally carefully measured one shot of liquor split between 2 glasses - & served with glass half full.

Basically - hotel is just over a year old & not able to handle full capacity due to inadequate plumbing & maid service. I expect that experience during non-peak times is substantially better.

Also of note - there is not an ATM nearby - the Western Union wanted to charge a poor rate & 10% service fee which is why front desk staff drove me to an ATM (which was much appreciated!). However, I booked 2 tours months in advance through the hotel & was not informed that 20% deposit for one tour & entire fee for other needed to be in cash -- since we were a group of 11 that amounted to a substantial amount of cash & hence need for ATM.

Finally - you pay more for rooms on upper floors & we did pay more - however, not worth it. Rooms on 4th floor billed as "partial ocean view" & could not even see a peak of ocean from my room. Also, maid service started on lower level floors & didn't always make it to upper floors.

I do think the hotel has potential if able to fix water issues & maid service - as noted above - location is fantastic & front desk tries really hard.

Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
Helpful?
5 Thank SF94597
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dporrascr, Director of Sales at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 10 January 2012
Dear friend,

Thank you for sharing your thoughts about your recent stay with us. While we are very happy that you like the hotel overall and pointed our great things about your stay such as the location, our rooms and front desk warm service, on the other hand, we feel sad for the inconveniences you had during your stay.

We would like to share with you that the hot water of the rooms is provided by a system that is call “Green Heat” which is a sustainable mechanism that heat the water with the heat generated by the air conditioned, also during your stay we had a high demand of hot water and we suffer a lack of hot water only during certain hours, be sure that we are taking actions immediately to increase the hot water capacity.

Also, we will talk with the House Keeping Manager and Restaurant Manager about your feedback in order to improve in the areas you mentioned.

We hope to have an opportunity to give you a good surprise on your next visit to Costa Rica.

Warm regards,

Hotel San Bada Friends
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pittsburgh, PA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 January 2012

Our stay at this awful hotel started at check-in: we arrived around 6pm, only to find out that our room had not been cleaned. That would have been fine, had they actually told me that; yet they assumed that because I am blonde and white that I don't understand Spanish and proceeded to take us on a dog and pony show while the maids hurriedly cleaned our room.

Only they didn't actually clean the room; the sheets were filthy from the guests before us, and the room had no towels, information or pillows; and the air conditioner did not work. We should have cut our losses and left, but there were no other hotels available in the area (we checked) so we complained to the manager. To his credit (and to the reception staff) he genuinely seemed to care and gave us another room. But caring is not enough; the hotel is less than a year old and already falling apart from poor craftmanship. It should be gutted and rebuilt with quality materials.

The next room we got was clean; but had other curiosities that we found endemic throughout the hotel. For example, it was impossible to aim the showerhead anywhere actually inside the shower. That might have been a bigger problem, except the hotel had no hot water most of the time we were there; so we ended up showering at one of the nearby hostels (which had no problems with hot water; despite charging $70 less a night than Hotel San Bada.)

The craftmanship of the hotel is just telling of how everything is. Nothing is straight; the walls, fixtures and furniture are the absolute cheapest they could find, and the place looks like it was built by schoolkids who were shown a Home Depot video. Seriously, one of the light switches for our room was in the closet because they apparently felt that was a good place to put it.

Add to this the wonderful New Years Eve party they threw: we never knew about it, but that just prevented us from paying $80 per person for the restauraunt's disgusting food and mediocre drinks. Unfortunately, it also prevented us from sleeping until 3am, because the band insisted on playing for a handful of drunk teenagers until then.

The beach itself is a crowded public beach which is not really safe at all: there are no lifeguards, dangerous riptides, and don't leave your belongings unattended. On the plus side, there are plenty of drug dealers around at night, if that's your thing. We ended up driving an hour and a half to Jaco or Dominical most days just to have a decent day at the beach.

I guess Hotel San Bada would be okay if you just want a place to bed down at night (except the beds are uncomfortable and hard as a rock.) But for my money, I would stay away from Manuel Antonio altogether: the park is nice, but you can book a trip here from a lot of places. There are too many great hotels in Costa Rica to bother with this dump. The staff is nice, but they can't make up for the fact that this place will probably be condemned within 5 years.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Courtnem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel San Bada

Property: Hotel San Bada
Address: Next to Manuel Antonio National Park Entrance | Manuel Antonio Beach, Manuel Antonio National Park 6350, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Green Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#7 Spa Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel San Bada 3.5*
Number of rooms: 67
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel San Bada brand new Hotel located right next to Manuel Antonio National Park entrance, and a few steps to Manuel Antonio Beach, Costa Rica.Rooms with National Park jungle and ocean view balconies. Discover the wildlife from your balcony and listen to the ocean. The biggest pool in the area with water slide, waterfalls and a pool bar. A private pool for adults at the terrace, with ocean and jungle view, perfect sunset spot! Our amenities:-Restaurant-Access to the public beach-Pool bar-Power generator in case of electricity shortout-Elevator-Biggest pool-Kids pool-Adults pool with ocean view-Snack Bar-WiFi-Free spacious parking, no driving needed once you are at the resort, everything is in walking distance. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel San Bada Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio National Park

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