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“Relaxing and Beautiful”
Review of Hotel San Bada

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Hotel San Bada
Ranked #13 of 46 Hotels in Manuel Antonio
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
San Diego
Level 6 Contributor
124 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Relaxing and Beautiful”
Reviewed 12 February 2013

We stayed here for our last 3 nights in Costa Rica so we could see the national park. It was by far the most expensive property we reserved during our 10 day trip. The service is amazing and the staff is unbelievably accommodating. They bend over backwards to provide exceptional service. There are a few hiccups that we felt made it overpriced, however. The shower has almost no water pressure and the hot water comes in and out. This is not uncommon for CR in general, however for the price we expected a hot shower. The decor is beautiful both inside the rooms and outside around the property. We paid for a premium room and oceanfront view and were on the 5th floor. But they never notified us that there would be constant construction on the 6th floor pool area. Between the birds and monkeys screeching at the crack of dawn, the construction noise, and the fact there are no blackout curtains, we got very little sleep. We were exhausted by the time we left. The rooftop pool was nice and quiet (adult only) but lacked much pizzazz. The main pool with the slide and swim up bar was nice, but was not well maintained and was already in need of upgrades when they have only been open a couple years. The pool water was a bit murky. The beach, shops, and restaurants are extremely convenient with a 5-10 minute walk so we had plenty to do within walking distance. Although there is free Wifi, don't get your hopes up. We had two cell phones and an iPad and none of them could get much connection to even check email. When we checked out, the guy at the front desk tried to charge us over $600 for upgrades and meals, when our package included all of that, which we pre-paid six months in advance. It took us an hour to check out after having to produce pages upon pages of documents and receipts to prove we had pre-paid. On a positive, you will see a lot of gorgeous birds and iguanas on the property. And again, the service is four star. The restaurant is outstanding - the best food we had our whole trip. As for the two tours that were included, one was advertised as a relaxing catamaran snorkling cruise but it was really a 5 hour "booze cruise" with 50 completely wasted partiers. Watching the sunset was anything but relaxing with screaming music and people dancing. The park tour was ok, but also very crowded so the only animals we got to see were by looking through the guide's scope.

Aside from the few negatives, we loved this property and the staff really work hard to make your stay enjoyable. It was just overpriced in our opinion, given there isn't a lot of amenities and its not right on the beach. For the price, we expected luxurious towels and no problems relaxing.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank JenK56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SanBada C, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 29 March 2013
Dear Guest!

Thank you for choosing our Hotel for your vacations in Costa Rica!

We appreciate your time for your constructive review and we are glad that you choose one of our Packages that include accommodations, tours and credit in our restaurant.

We fully appreciate all the points as noted by our guest. We are going to improve on those points as we think they are going to improve our guests stay and are possible to achieve in a short period of time.

We want to confirm that our location right next to Manuel Antonio National Park is a great plus to have comfortable and relaxing vacations. During the time you visit our Hotel it was high season, in which the rates increased in all the region due the demand of accommodations, however we want to let you know that for green season (May, June, August, September, October and November) the rates decrease, and sometimes there are many specials as stay 4 nights and pay only for 3.

To our dear Tripadvisor readers Hotel San Bada was created with the purpose of bringing a new alternative for those guests looking for a romantic experience with the nature at comfortable rooms at great prices, for all the middle and the middle high class. So at San Bada we do not praise ourselves for being a luxury Hotel, we praise ourselves for being a great Hotel for families, couples and friends with the comforts required to discover the wonders of the nature and the National Park.

Again, we thank you for your valuable experience and for kind words regarding our staff and service.

Finally, we take all reviews here on Tripadvisor seriously and strive every day to consider the content each review and make any necessary changes. Overall we agree that in conclusion your stay at our Resort was satisfactory and we do hope to welcome you back 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
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Maryland
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 February 2013

My husband and I recently returned from a fabulous trip in Costa Rica, including stays in La Fortuna, Monteverde, and Manuel Antonio. Manuel Antonio was by far our favorite place - we would go back in a heartbeat and could stay there for weeks with plenty to do and see - and Hotel San Bada is the PERFECT place to stay for quick access to the national park and beaches.

The entrance to the national park is literally feet away from the hotel entrance, and the public beaches and shops/restaurants are about a 3-5 minute walk from the hotel. There are very few hotels in Manuel Antonio that have such easy access to both the park and beaches, and most are misleading, or at least confusing, about how far they are from the beaches, so be careful when booking. Or make it easy on yourself and just book with Hotel San Bada =)

The rooms and views are beautiful. The beds are comfortable and the bathrooms are nice with strong, hot showers. We had mixed experiences with the restaurant...The breakfast buffet was good and included everything from fresh fruit, cereal, and yogurt, to scrambled eggs, sausage, and made-to-order omelets. And of course it's even better because it's included in the room rate. Lunch was good, but the service was incredibly slow considering we were one of two tables in the restaurant at the time, and the drinks are overpriced ($8 for a pina colada). We ate dinner at El Sol (in town), The Marlin (in town), and Rancho Leon (just outside of town) and they were all good.

I also thought the hotel was a good value considering the room size, location, amenities, and especially since they were even offering free transportation to and from the airport with our stay (probably would cost $300+ round-trip if booked separately).

My only complaint is that it was difficult to get in touch with the hotel; some emails would go through while others (to the same address) bounced multiple times (I believe the error said their inbox was full)...and even my submission through their website contact form never received a response. This was very frustrating as I was trying to confirm my booking information, but it all worked out.

Just a note on activities in the area: We booked a guided tour through the national park with Johan Chaves and HIGHLY recommend him. Also booked a fishing charter with Cowboy Sport Fishing, and while we didn't catch many fish (not disappointing to me since my husband is the fisherman and I don't like fishing at all), we did end up having an up-close encounter with a pod of 4 humpback whales which was absolutely breathtaking.

While you probably won't be surrounded by monkeys here like at some of the other hotels, I still think my husband and I would stay here again next time we visit in Manuel Antonio. Highly recommended. Pura Vida!

Room Tip: We happened to get a corner room on the third floor which had a great view of the forest, though I t...
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  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Christeve1110
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SanBada C, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 29 March 2013
Dear Guest!

Muchas gracias! for your great review, we are humbled by your detailed review of the excellent experience you had during your stay at our Resort! And more important we feel satisfied that you are willing to stay with us again in the future.

We agree 100% on you review, yes we really are literally door to door to the National Park, the closest Hotel to Manuel Antonio National Park, in an area that is quieter, but close to the public beach and other facilities such as gift shops and restaurants. We appreciate your recognition and for pointing out this unique advantage we have from the rest of our colleagues.

Moreover, we appreciate your review of our buffet breakfast, we do really care of all the food served in our restaurant and we will definately accept your feedback with the hope to improve and make each meal a great culinary experience for all our guest.

Thanks again for your wonderful review! And we definitely hope we can continue to host you for your upcoming vacations in the future. See you soon.

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
Level 4 Contributor
49 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 February 2013

My wife and I recently spent two nights and three days in our favorite beach area of Costa Rica. We live in San Jose and like to go to the beach in the National Park Manuel Antonio, which, for us, is one of the nicest beaches in the world. We decided to try the fairly new Hotel San Bada, which is located next to the entrance to the park. The hotel was nice and we enjoyed our stay there. The breakfast buffet is excellent and the restaurant serves an excellent meal. Although we noticed a lack of maintenance to a hotel that is only two years old, it did not detract from our experience. We would recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Lawdoglaa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SanBada C, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 29 March 2013
Dear Guest!

Thank you for your review and for sharing your feedback and experience with us.

Our location here door to door to the gates of Manuel Antonio National Park are a quiet side of Manuel Antonio beach, very close to the public beach (2 min walking distance), shops, water sport tours, restaurants, etc. We agree 100% with the words of your review "Perfect Location" offering rooms with garden/jungle view or ocean view.

We are humbled by your mention of the excellent buffet breakfast and general the food we serve at the restaurant, we are excited that you've been able to return home with fond memories of the flavor of our dishes.

Thanks a lot for your review and for your feedback regarding the maintenance, we will put that into our maintenance team attention.

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
Halifax, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 February 2013

We had stayed in some really nice places before ending our vacation here, but this was our best experience. Nice hotel. Great location, right by the entrance to the national park. Good facilities ... including the ground floor pool/bar and the top floor pool/bar and sunset viewing patio. Friendly staff everywhere. Nice restaurant, good food ... and absolutely fabulous wait staff! All were friendly, professional, helpful and informative when drawn into discussions about the area, country, etc. ... have to specifically mention Elias, Leo and Maykel who made our experience so wonderful, all of them were just superb! I'd return just to meet them again, felt they were like friends by the time we left.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank HowieBaby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SanBada C, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 29 March 2013
Dear Guest!

Thank you very much for your review and nice comments about the staff, and our superstars!

It is our goal to make sure our guests feel like a friend while they are staying with us and try to share with them a little bit of our area knowledge since most of the staff hired at the Hotel born and grew up here, and so your review really makes us proud.

Great job on choosing Hotel San Bada, and we look forward to seeing you again soon!

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
toronto
Level 6 Contributor
354 reviews
95 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 431 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2013

I stayed here for four nights in late January 2013.
The hotel was dreamy--huge rooms, a fantastic bathroom and great tub, a refrigerator, lots of shelving, a balcony overlooking the jungle (which I found to be a terrific place to dry laundry--the sun bleached all the whites a brilliant hue), a table and chairs, a coffeemaker...
Everything was sparkling clean (except that the housekeeper for my particular room was not at all good--after noticing that the bathtub had not been washed for two days, I placed a bar of used soap on the ledge and it was still there when she had finished the room. Since I appeared as she was leaving, I asked her to please wash the tub--motioning, as I did not speak Spanish and she did not speak English, and she motioned that she had done it already, whereupon I showed her the soap and some stray hairs and she finally got it attended to).
But, to counterbalance that, the rest of the staff was superlative. Special thanks to Marianna at the front desk. When I asked her if there was any bubble bath for the tub and there wasn't, a while later, Miguel appeared at the door with a large bottle of Softsoap moisturizing body wash--Marianna had sent to the store for it, with the okay of her boss--who knew that moisturizing body wash makes a fine froth of bubbles? That was above and beyond the call of duty, by far, and greatly appreciated.
Later, when the bathtub drain did not close (disappointing, with my brand new bottle of potential bubbles), Miguel reappeared to help fix it, finally 'borrowing' a drain plug from another room. He was a pleasure to deal with, courteous and smily.
There were three computers on my floor for the guests' use--two did not work when I arrived--a serviceperson came right up and toiled for hours to get them going again. If you bring your own computer (as I did), you can use it in your room for free and the signal was good.
The breakfast room staff were excellent.
The grounds were extraordinarily beautiful.
The park was at the entrance to Manuel Antonio Park and a short walk from a beautiful public beach (there is a path from the hotel directly to the beach).
I didn't know there was an adult only pool on the sixth floor till I read someone else's review today.
All in all, this is a hotel I would definitely return to again and again, should I have the luck to revisit Costa Rica.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank ShifraToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SanBada C, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 27 March 2013
Dear Guest!

Thank you very much for staying at our Resort and for sharing your experience with others at T.A.!

We greatly appreciate the time and effort that you took to let us know how much you enjoyed your recent stay here with us in Manuel Antonio, we are glad that our location, waitstaff, buffet breakfast and our rooms were the highlight of your vacations.

We are sorry for the bathtub inconvenience at your room, we already sent the feedback to our housekeeping manager to bring it to her attention, our housekeepers cleans the rooms daily, so it might be possible that the person responsible for your room did not take the enought time to do it correctly.

Thank you again for your great review and we hope that we will see you 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
Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 January 2013

This was our second day at the Hotel San Bada this year and we couldn't be more pleased with the experience. The hotel has the best location of any in the area, quick access to beaches, the Manuel Antonio Nat'l Park, and an easy walk to town, shops, restaurants. Large, high ceiling, airy rooms with a view of the park from one side, ocean from the back. The staff goes out of their way to anticipate and meet your needs. The attached Congo restaurant has great food and a fantastic manager who is really dedicated to making each meal a sucess. The waitstaff seem very happy in their work, efficient, and full of knowledge of the areas activities. We were able to take the tour up to the ranch owned by the hotel which included horse back riding, swimming in amazing waterfalls, and a delicious homemade Costa Rican lunch. Beautiful views everywhere. It adds so much to your vacation to have such a amazing group of people such as they have employed at the Hotel San Bada. We've traveled in many areas and it is rare to find such a comfortable, happy place.

Room Tip: The higher floors have great views of both jungle and ocean. Worth the upgrade.
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  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Robin S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SanBada C, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 27 March 2013
Dear Robin S,

Thank you for taking your time and sharing your experience with others at T.A! We were glad meeting you again at our Resort and that you found things great or better as your first experience with us!

Thanks a lot for your great thoughts regarding our Congo Restaurant, we have skilled chefs and wait staff that for sure will make your dinner enjoyable. We were especially delighted to see the photo you uploaded with some of our waitstaff.

We do feel honored that you joined our Mulguri Tour, riding through an adventure offroad to get there, and discovering the most amazing waterfalls in town, exclusive for the guests.

We are elated to hear that we were able to make your stay satisfactory and hope you are able to stay here again in the near future.

Sincerely,

Your friends at Hotel San Bada
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco, California, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 January 2013

Our stay at Hotel San Bada is one of the best vacations I've had! For our family, with two college- age sons, it was the perfect blend of comfort, jungle, beach and wifi. Our adventures began our first evening when we heard the roar of howler monkeys while swimming in the main pool (it's huge, with a crazy fast slide and waterfalls). Later in the evening, a baby howler fell onto the pool deck (yes, San Bada borders with Manuel Antonio Reserve). We worried as a staff person took the stunned baby away, and were relieved when an animal rescue team came back with the baby. Baby was in an open box, placed on the jungle floor...and we heard the cries back and forth from mom and baby until they were reunited. True story!
I'd recommend taking the Mulguri Tour, which is a visit to private land owned by the hotel. Our guide took us by four wheel drive over dirt roads into the hills for horseback riding, jumping and swimming in a waterfall pool, and having a home cooked meal with a neighboring family (all home made, organic and free range).
The hotel is just a few minutes walk to the beach. We loved body surfing and watching the sunset (of course at the same time). I really can't decide if I like that more, or being at the hotel 6th floor pool where you can see jungle and ocean with the sun setting.
Other thoughts about our stay:
rooms - clean, spacious, well appointed. tv had espn (it flickered a bit) we watched some of the NFL playoff games
breakfast - great fresh made to order omelets
staff - always friendly, helpful, professional
Manuel Antonio Reserve - entrance is just at the front of the hotel, and tickets are available through the front desk.
Great memories!

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Gloria W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SanBada C, General Manager at Hotel San Bada, responded to this review, 27 March 2013
Dear Gloria,

Wow! Thank you for your excellent review regarding your last visit to our Hotel!

We appreciate a lot your kindness for taking your time and describe the adventures your experienced while staying at our Resort!

Indeed that afternoon was quite an adventure while our team rescued the baby monkey that fell from the tree, thanks to our brave park rangers the baby returned safely home with their parents.

We are glad that you experienced the best adventure of all! Our Mulguri Waterfalls Tour, 27 hectares of stunning vegetation, and 4 magnificent waterfalls including a delicious costarican lunch, cooked in a wood stove. A tour dedicated to explore amazing waterfalls and the Costa Rica jungle in a small town up in the mountains.

Thank you for your kind words regarding our great location, door to door with Manuel Antonio National Park main entrance, and close to the public beach, where you can either take a short walk in the beach for the sunset or look at it relaxed from our 6th floor with a refreshing cocktail just prepared in your hand.

We feature 4 different rooms categories: standard rooms, superior rooms, deluxe rooms and suites. All the rooms except the suites have and area of 32sqm, bath with tub and shower, private balconies facing the garden, jungle or ocean according to the room category, and all are accessible by elavator.

Thanks again for your wonderful comment and we hope to see you again in the future.

Sincerely,

Your friends at Hotel San Bada
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative 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 6350, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio
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
#8 Spa Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Manuel Antonio
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

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