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“Everything we thought it would be, and more!”

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Gaia Hotel & Reserve
Ranked #3 of 46 Hotels in Manuel Antonio
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Tucson, Arizona
Level 3 Contributor
1 review
“Everything we thought it would be, and more!”
Reviewed 30 June 2007

Where to begin with GAIA? First of all, we stayed four nights at this wonderful property, just wish we could have stayed longer. To say that everything is/was wonderful would be an understatement. The staff and service is exceptional, I thought I heard something like 50 employees, for a 17 room hotel. The pool is great, with a great bar. The view from the restaurant is amazing, especially at sunset ,and at breakfast. Tapas in the bar were great, so was the wine. The room was amazing, the beds were phenomenal. Only wish the TV was a bit bigger, it was hard to see from the bed. We definately reccomend this place, classy uber-boutique!! Lots of hospitality, charm, nature. Oh and I almost forgot to mention the spa. But get the deep tissue, not the terra massage if you want to really get worked over.

  • Liked — Everything
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed June 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank mrsmpg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,538 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (257)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Chicago, Illinois
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 June 2007

My husband and I have traveled to many countries and stayed at many hotels including the Shangrila Hotel in Hong Kong and this was the best hotel we have ever stayed at. The personal service was amazing. Our airlines lost our luggage, but we were taken care of by Kimberly, the hotel manager. She took us shopping for toiletries and clothes since we did not know any Spanish and followed-up with the airlines for us to make sure that we got our luggage as soon as possible and could start enjoying our vacation as soon as we arrived. It was very comedic since she was yelling in Spanish while we drove through the town "Do you sell socks and udnerwear?" The hotel bar had the best chocolate martinis we have ever tried for a bargain price of $6 a glass. Our room was fantastic; great decor, sheets and service. We met some wonderful people during our stay there and even went out to dinner with 2 other couples. We enjoyed our stay there tremendously and will definitely go back.

  • Liked — The service
  • Disliked — N/A
  • Stayed March 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
6 Thank Chicagoan22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta Georgia
Level 3 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 May 2007

We stayed at GAIA for a week in May. We were in a deluxe suite. We found the staff at GAIA to be outstanding. We had a valet who did a great job, but he was not really necessary because the intire staff from check in where we received are first hint of GAIA luxury, a cold towel and a drink until the day we checked out when it was like saying goodbye to old friends. The room was outstanding. The view great, especially from our roof top terrrace. We had breakfast their most of the time. We had one small complaint about the step getting into the huge jacuzzi tub because my wife has a bad leg, I mentioned to Kimberly who is the general manager that it would be nice if they put a couple of the step treads on it so it wouldn't be so slippery getting out. By the time we came back from dinner that was done. For those that are interested the white gloves are gone in LA Luna. The food is outstanding and the menu was exceptional. As well as the tapas for happy hour. The gorgonzola cheese tapas was terrific. The beef I think was from Argentina and outstanding as well. We did eat a couple of nigfhts out, but no comparison to LA Luna in service or quality. If I had anything negative to say it would be about the waiters, they were all so helpful you really couldn't tell which one was your server so you didn't know who derserved or got the extra tip we always left. We will certainly be going back to GAIA with friends in the near future. I would recommed it highly to someone who is looking for the ultimate in service and luxury. Just seeing the pool with its four tiers is worth the visit what an engineering marvel it is.

  • Liked — The service, staff and beautiful rooms
  • Disliked — nothing to dislike
  • Stayed May 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
9 Thank RickoAtlantaGeorgia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cincinnati, OH
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 May 2007

My wife and I recently stayed at Gaia for one week. It is a wonderful
resort with a staff aimed to please. Even ownership makes a point to get to know their guests. A nice touch.

The room and ameneties are wonderful. A few odd designs (entering the bathtub/shower), but overall thumbs up. The staff was wonderful and made our stay much more enjoyable. I felt safe and secure during our entire stay at the resort which provided for a relaxing stay.

The pool is wonderful. Unique, modern and designed to provide optimum
privacy. It never seemed crowded. A huge + for us.

The restuarant is very good. The Chef has a unique style. Breakfast is included in the price and can be delivered to your room or balcony
which we very much enjoyed. Lunch and dinner was very good, although I would recommend a few more local seafood selections. Note to management....fill your martini's to the rim.

The spa was very nice. The spa's facility are adequate, but not impressive. However, the staff are personable and very attentive. I'm not good with names, but one person we met at the spa who also picked us up at the beach was simply wonderful. The massage my wife and I received was very good. There is also a good number of options to choose from the menu. Couple of recommendations to management (since I know they read this)....easy on the calfs and close the drapes just prior the massage. The rooms are a little too bright.

The location of the property has to give ownership some concern (long-term). I'm not sure who performed the feasability study on this property, but I'd go back and demand my money back. This was the biggest disappointment in my opinion which isn't managements fault. It's not that it's a bad site....it's just ok....but if the surrounding area further develops this property will offer very little as far as a view. In my opinion, a 5 star resort should be sited at a 5 star location. In addition, the sounds of traffic and dogs drown out the sounds of nature and serenity I was expecting. Fortunately the pool waterfall, once turned on, provides some reprieve.

The private reserve is rather disappointing. There is very little in the way of wildlife as compared to other public/private reserves we toured. It's simply hit or miss unlike other reserves.

Manuel Antonio is very nice. Good wildlife and a nice beach, but very
popular and rather small. Take one of the side trails for a nice diversion.

Do: ATV tour, fishing (deep sea), titi canopy tour, eat at Marlin's, El Grand Escape, Aqua Azul, and the resort. These restaurants just had a more lively ambiance and were far more fun than some of the recommendations I received from the resort. ENJOY THE RESORT AND RELAX.

Dont: Eat at La Catina (overrated) or Mar y Luna (overpriced) fresh water fishing, overpay for a guide at Manuel Antonio...in fact.....do it yourself. You're simply paying for a few facts and a telescope. If that's important to you, pay no more than $25 per person. For any activity for that matter, just ask around. Prices for
the same activity with the same service provider vary widely.

  • Liked — The people and the room
  • Disliked — The location
  • Stayed May 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
9 Thank SadieandChey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
VIrginia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 May 2007

What a way to watch the sunset ! Friends and I stayed at Gaia for my birthday and what a treat ! The infinity pools offered great views of sunsets over the Pacific while attentive staff brought us drinks. The staff sent flowers on my birthday and even arranged a private dinner party in my honor ! The rooms/bedding/views were luxurious - even when it rained we had a great time reading/napping on our covered balcony - will definitely stay there next time. Interesting guests from Venezuela to Lousianna bayou - even a baseball star !

  • Liked — views
  • Disliked — prop plane ride to Quepos from San Jose
  • Stayed May 2006, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank skcoggin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Detroit, Michigan
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 11 May 2007

We stayed at the Gaia on our honeymoon this past March and it is nothing short of fabulous. The owners (who we met and enjoyed their company) have gone the extra mile not only in service but in decor. The hotel is located up on a small mountain overlooking the ocean and
Manuel Antonio. Most of the hotel is decorated in a very stylish yet very tropical white. Our room was beautiful and well-appointed with a separate bedroom and living room, jacuzzi tub, private deck and plasma TV. The pool is fun and the restaurant delicious, but the service makes the Gaia stand out. Being a small hotel, you get very personal attention. The staff helped us numerous times with planning day trips, breakfast in the room (breakfast is not to be missed!), restaurant recommendations, and anything else we could think of. In my mind, there is no other place to stay in Quepos.

  • Liked — The decor and service.
  • Disliked — Wish it had a better view of the ocean.
  • Stayed March 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Robert_and_Marilyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
La Mesa/San Diego
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 May 2007

One need only travel occasionally to fully comprehend the commendations I am about to bestow upon Gaia:
I wasn’t ready to leave!

I didn’t yearn for my own bed, I didn’t crave for a home cooked meal, I didn’t feel strained or stressed or unwelcome or uncomfortable – I wasn’t ready to leave!

And while, for many a well-traveled individual, that very compliment carries satisfactory weight – I offer for those not yet convinced the following…

Gaia is a sanctuary within a sanctuary, a haven in the paradise that is Costa Rica, an aria of color and elegance within a vast landscape that can only be described as the perfect opera of sight and sound. Gaia is enchanting and sophisticated, yet rugged and soulful; a mellifluous symphony bridging the howls and melodies of nearby fauna, the vibrancy of the surrounding flora, and hotel’s communal commitment to her guest’s absolute pleasure.

Every detail, from our transportation by private car, the wine and cheese awaiting our arrival, our concierge and his availability every moment of every day, to the superb culinary styling of Edward Florian all make for a truly euphonious experience.

Though I understand my appreciative veneration may fall to blind eye due to it’s somewhat subjective tone, I offer the more concrete:
Our concierge, Cristian, was never more than a phone call away. Literally. Cristian provided us with his personal cell phone number, just in case we had ANY requirements at ANY time – yes, even when he was not on the Gaia clock, he was available to us.
Edward Florian is a name to remember. This brilliant young chef has an amazingly impressive CV and a willingness to share his passion and knowledge of fabulous food.
The facility itself is contemporary and refined, a pleasure to experience from every angle. The beds are top rate, the showers are as invigorating as a waterfall, and the views are indescribable.
The Gaia family is just that – a family. Every smiling face, every willing hand, every courtesy possible is extended by this eager group. Go to La Luna Lounge and ask for one of Javier’s famous Mojitos; experience the charm of Chris and Kenneth’s kind service in La Luna Restaurant; take a swim in the pool while drinking a Pura Vida prepared by Marco as you look out over the Manuel Antonio coastline. And absolutely, without a doubt, stop and chat with Tom or Kimberly or anybody else – everyone is happy to shake hands, talk a spell, and truly do whatever necessary to make your stay comfortable, relaxing and memorable. Just ask!
And since I feel it necessary, given the nature of some reviews listed herein, might I add – in an effort to provide the most awe-inspiring experience, our concierge arranged all of our tours. In doing so we may have paid a few extra dollars, but that is so easily mitigated: our tours were private, just my husband and I – and if translation is required here, let me say that touring Manuel Antonio can be a very religious experience, given the proper set of circumstances. The opportunity to truly commune with nature, to see and hear and smell and taste the Costa Rican flair is priceless. And to do so under the guidance of capable eyes and without distraction, well, words can not express how valuable this can be. But, more importantly, the tour companies have a remarkable relationship with Gaia, so much so that the mention of our accommodations provided us with the very best tour guides and immediate consideration everywhere we went. One of our guides had previously appeared on Wild Planet, while another of our guides worked with Discovery on a show. That is the caliber of care you’re provided through Gaia.

Well, I have sung praises to Gaia for far too long now, though no amount of praise can do her justice in my estimation. And as I call to a close my meager acclaim for this fabulous oasis I would like to make one final notation:
I have always felt that there are far too many places to see before I die, and for that reason I have made a rule to never travel to a place more than once. Gaia has sincerely changed my perspective and I look forward to visiting my new friends very soon.

  • Liked — Food, accommodations, staff, the entire experience, etc
  • Disliked — Honestly, I have nothing negative to say about Gaia
  • Stayed May 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank Torrey_Loves_Travel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Gaia Hotel & Reserve

Property: Gaia Hotel & Reserve
Address: Km 2.7 Carretera Quepos a Manuel Antonio, Manuel Antonio 6350, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#1 Spa Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#2 Luxury Hotel in Manuel Antonio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Gaia Hotel & Reserve 4.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Gaia Hotel, Manuel Antonio's only 5-star resort and dining. Bask in our infinity-edge pools, dash Aveda bath salts into your Jacuzzi and relax enjoying the jungle and ocean views. Rooms feature A/C, cable, flat screen TVs, portable phones, home entertainment units, internet connectivity, coffee-maker, mini-bar, safety box, hairdryer, 24/7 room service and full spa services. Your personal valet sees to your needs, and our Nature Guide hosts an exclusive tour of our 12-acre Nature Reserve. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gaia Hotel And Reserve
Gaia Hotel & Reserve Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio

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