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“Family Trip”
Review of Tulemar Resort

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Tulemar Resort
Ranked #2 of 47 Hotels in Manuel Antonio
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 27 March 2014

We recently completed a 5 night stay at The Buena Vista Luxury Villas and were not dissappointed. It was a perfect vacation spot to end our Costa Rica vacation. It was private, relaxing and the views were picture perfect as were the sunsets every night either from the beach, our balcony or the restaurant. Our private conceirge, Danny did an outstanding job of taking care of our every need. He arranged a fishing trip for my son-in-law and grandchildren. They each caught a sea bass which the restaurant prepared for our dinner the very same night. It was delicious. All the restaurants he recomended were excellent and all within walking distance. We took advantage of all the beach activities which were included but also enjoyed relaxing by one of the four pools. My two, 12 year old Grandsons liked it even better than the Westin in Playa Conchal where we had stayed the previous 5 nights. The rooms fit our needs perfectly. We had a small kitchen in one of them and used it to prepare breakfast and some lunches as well as cocktails.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank CaliforniaBabs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BuenaVistaLuxuryVil, Manager at Tulemar Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 1 April 2014

CaliforniaBabs, Thank you for reviewing us and reviewing us well! Marlon and the crew at the restaurant are a fantastic bunch and what could be better than you hookin' it and us cookin' it? Our location and construction is perfect for a family vacation: numerous pools, private beach with everything you could want or need and an outfitted accommodation that is as good or better than the view from home! Pura Vida and Thank you!
Chris

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Reviewed 23 March 2014

This was our second stay here. On our last visit we loved the property itself but had some disappointing experiences with the service. We decided to give it another try and were rewarded: all went very well this time.

This is a spectacularly beautiful property. Our casa (the same one we had before) is stunning inside and had views of the forest and ocean. From our balcony we could see monkeys, sloths (mother and baby), birds, and spectacular sunsets over the ocean. The beach is lovely and David the beach attendant is very friendly and helpful, as was Orlando at the reception. We had good assistance from our concierge Andres when needed, including arranging a driver to take us to Rainmaker Park for the morning. Shuttle service up and down the hill between the beach and our casa was quick when we asked for it.

We did not try the new onsite restaurant, but this addition is a good sign that the resort is continuing to invest and not merely coasting on its strong reputation. Many very good restaurants are within 5 min walk (some 1 minute), and there are at least three small supermarkets nearby (allowing us to eat breakfasts in our own kitchen).

The only slight hiccup was the 15-minute late arrival of our ride from the airport. We were worried that this was a sign of the uneven service we had seen on our first visit, but everything went beautifully from then on.

Staying here three nights in the second half of a two-week family trip, we enjoyed the ability to spread out in the huge 2-bedroom unit. But I think the smaller and less expensive Tulemar Bungalows would offer nearly the same experience otherwise.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank HAPPAH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BuenaVistaLuxuryVil, Manager at Tulemar Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 1 April 2014

Happah, Thank you for staying with us again. I'm quite pleased to hear we met your expectations. Thank you for coming back and for writing the nice review. Next time please come to Buena Vista del Sol for a wonderful meal and incredible view! Pura Vida!
Chris

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Reviewed 21 March 2014

My adult daughter and I just returned from a fabulous stay at Buena Vista. This was our second visit to the property. We had a hotel room at unit #206. Beautiful views with frequent visits from birds and monkeys particularly for our morning coffee. The staff at Buena Vista are absolutely phenomenal with service that goes above and beyond any I've ever had. Arlen - the beach bartender not only knew us by name, but also what we liked to drink within a day. He was extremely attentive. David at the beach quickly learned the general area we liked to hang out and had our chairs ready in the morning. We watched him attend to others needs and he even steered us away from rocks during high tide! The beach at Buena Vista is probably one of the best I've ever been to. It's small, but allows for a lot of privacy - shade or sun.

We particularly enjoyed Orlando who was at the front desk each evening wishing us a good dinner and welcoming us on return. He was helpful in teaching us various phrases en Espanol and taught us on the first night that if we didn't know what someone was saying to simply respond, "Pura Vida"! Great advise as it was so true. One night a sloth was moving along the telephone lines crossing the road in front of reception. Orlando called the power company folks to come rescue her. He's just generally a very nice guy.

Danny was helpful to us as well. He served as concierge and made dinner and tour reservations. He checked in every day to be sure our needs were met and even asked us what time we'd like the room serviced. This is so unusual that, at first, we were a bit bewildered by it thinking that they wanted us to vacate our room, but realized that it's just a practice after overhearing a person request a specific time.

Both Joshua and Michael were attentive to our travel needs within the property. Overall, we liked the hiking up and down hills as it added exercise to our trip, but they were always around the couple of times that we needed a ride.

We liked the restaurant, but particularly Eric who spent quite a lot of time teaching us how to request water, our bill, etc in Spanish! He was very enthusiastic about our lesson, friendly and attentive to our dining needs. The food is not spectacular, but good, decent portions. I highly recommend the fish dishes. They were very good. Breakfast was ok. Not great, but adequate. We ultimately just bought some breakfast food at a local market and ate in our room most days.

Rudy was just a fun guy. He moved around the property a bit - in the restaurant or serving on the beach. He's a joker and always helped us to laugh!

Overall, by the end of our week at Buena Vista, they all felt a little like family and we enjoyed it. The staff are friendly, always greet you, are helpful, but definitely not intrusive.

It was a great trip - a beautiful country - excellent activities - and kind, smiling people. We missed it the minute we left!

Room Tip: We had Room 206 - beautiful view, perfect for 2 people.
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank cherylsmith630
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BuenaVistaLuxuryVil, Manager at Tulemar Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2014

Cheryl, Glad you came back it is a true sign of your appreciation and we are grateful to have provided another fabulous vacation. The Sun or Shade possibilities of Tulemar beach are unique thanks for noticing! Again thank you to my staff who I often thank in these responses. We hope to see you again! Pura Vida, Chris

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Reviewed 19 March 2014

We stayed here for a few days in March 2014. We had unit 203, which is just a small hotel room. It was very basic and has no view, a small bathroom and minimal closet and storage space. It appeared to us that we had the only room without a view, so we were disappointed in that.
However, the beach and the staff made our stay memorable. One of the drivers, Michael, was particularly attentive to us. He made all the difference in the quality of our stay. The site is very steep and we could not negotiate all of the hills on foot. Michael tried hard to make the entire site easily accessible for us and made us feel very welcome. The drivers really made the stay good for us. The quick service they provided gave us the access we needed with no waiting. Also of note was Danny, our concierge. He booked tours, helped us rearrange some of our existing travel plans, and was generally available to help us with any need.
I was trying to learn Spanish, and all of the staff was really helpful. They always acted like they understood me and went out of their way to help me learn more words. Luis and Orlando both went out of their way with extras for us too.
We found the restaurant service to be terrible and the food only adequate. We tried the restaurant for dinner and for lunch. Both times it was not crowded, but the service was appallingly slow.

Room Tip: Room 203 is small and has no view. Try to be a little higher up on the hill.
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank travellinggail48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BuenaVistaLuxuryVil, Manager at Tulemar Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2014

Travellinggail, Thank you for the review; we are glad you stayed with us. Good note to future guests about booking our property, it is helpful to speak with us directly so that we can manage expectations. We try to provide the best view possible but topography can be an issue. Our Deluxe Room is subjectively described here and it is our most affordable unit while staying with us. The Deluxe Room is the bottom floor to the Select One Bedroom. This particular unit offers an un-paralleled level of seclusion very good for love birds! Pura Vda, Chris

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Reviewed 17 March 2014

8 of us, ranging from age 9-44, stayed in villa 406 from March 7-15, 2014. Can't say enough about the view, grounds, accommodations as others have described -- clean, well-equipped, beautiful. The staff were attentive but not obtrusive. The ability to see wildlife from your porch (sometimes right on it!) was amazing. There are grocery stores and several restaurants within easy walking distance. It did not feel crowded (despite being Spring Break for many) and the other guests we met were very friendly and easy going. (It seemed to be mostly parents in their 30s and 40s with their kids, plus some retired couples - but there are a LOT of stairs). The rhythm of the days was lovely -- up early with the sun, and everything (even in the nearby cafes) wrapped up around 9pm -- not the place to go if you're looking for late-night partying, which was great with us.

A few notes about the excursions arranged through the resort, as we weren't too sure about these ahead of time: we found the referrals all to be of high quality without unnecessary mark up (although not cheap). We went surfing (with Dante's Water Sports) -- fabulous beginner experience and fun even for those who chose not to surf. Zip-lining (at Canopy Safari) was a definite highlight -- well organized and exciting without being as terrifying as some of us feared! Our guide Johan for the Manuel Antonio National Park was stellar -- friendly and knowledgeable -- worth the investment, as without him we probably would have seen literally 10% of what he was able to spot and explain. The beaches in the park are amazing, but not enough better than the resort beach to warrant the 1.8km walk to get to them and the lack of any services once there. We did the mangrove boat tour -- that one was a disappointment. A lovely, mellow ride through what felt like a bayou, but not enough variety or wildlife to keep our kids and teens engaged, especially for the price. We also had a private chef cook us dinner in our villa -- I wouldn't do it again. The chef was personable and prepared food that looked and tasted good, we found it to be awkwardly portioned, quite expensive and a couple of us got sick afterwards. Given the good restaurants both at the resort and walkable to it, this 'treat' was unnecessary. We loved going to the farmers' market in Quepos (a 5 minute local bus ride away) twice -- the fruit is amazing -- it's open Friday 4-9 and Saturday mornings.

We got home last night and miss it already.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank RebeccainGuelph
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BuenaVistaLuxuryVil, Manager at Tulemar Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2014

Rebecca, Thank you for the review and glad to hear our Premium Villas gratified expectations! Yes we work very hard to keep the grounds (and living quarters) pristine; this provides for seclusion if guests so desire. Your observation on the nightlife is accurate; there are places you could go, but for the most part the area does close down not too many hours after the sun. Glad the tours where, for the most part, entertaining though we have no control of the tours. There is quite a bit to do in the area from mountains to rivers to the sea there are many tours to be tried. Thank you for staying with us, Pura Vida- Chris

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Reviewed 16 March 2014

Our recent stay was wonderful from start to finish! We stayed in a beautiful villa overlooking the ocean. Danny and Michael treated us like royalty and booked us on great local tours. The resort was peaceful and quiet and the grounds were lovely. The restaurant served delicious food and had a great view of the ocean. There was a private beach with casual dining available. We saw many monkeys, a sloth and flocks of parakeets. The weather was tropical, with a pleasant breeze blowing most of the time. Really enjoyed ourselves!

Room Tip: Room 304 was great!
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Leslie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BuenaVistaLuxuryVil, Manager at Tulemar Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2014

Leslie I’m glad you liked our Select One Bedroom villa. These units provide quite an exotic and secluded experience. It is an avowed belief in MA and Quepos that Buena Vista del Sol has the best view! Glad you enjoyed- Call us and come back soon, Pura Vida- Chris

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Reviewed 13 March 2014

We absolutely loved our stay! Our family of 5 stayed in the 3 br villa and it was more than enough room! The condo was beautiful, clean, and the kitchen was very well equipped. The best part, though, was the view and the porch--we were out there any time we could be--and were often joined by monkeys in the early mornings. The beach was quiet and uncrowded, the beach cafe was great and very convenient. We walked to several great restaurants recommended by Orlando, our wonderful front desk guy. We also took a very short bus ride down to the public beach, did some shopping, and did a nature tour in Manuel Antonio Park. The nature walk was fun, but be prepared for a crowd and most of the time the naturalist finds the wildlife and it is really only visible through his telescope--except, of course, for the monkeys that are everywhere on the beach. Other than those short excursions we were most happy on our porch or at the beach. The pools were beautiful,but we preferred the beach. One thing to be prepared for is the terrain--very hilly and steep--but, they have a shuttle that is always just where you need it, when you need it. There are lots of steps to get to your condo, but again, well planned to make them very doable. All the people were wonderful and took the absolute best care of us--Brian, Orlando, Michael, Rudy, and David (on the beach). Sylvia gives a great massage and makes beautiful silver jewelry. I know there were others that I am forgetting, and I'm sad about that b/c they truly go out of their way to make your stay as pleasant as possible. We are counting the moments until we can return again someday!

Room Tip: I have a feeling all the condos are equally lovely, but perhaps the ones toward the top of the resor...
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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2  Thank Suzanne R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BuenaVistaLuxuryVil, Manager at Tulemar Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2014

Thank you Suzanne! We really appreciate your appreciation! Your observation about the park is astute; having said that, nature tours can be arranged within Tulemar Gardens. We are fortunate to have a large campus that encourages wildlife and also provides for an element of seclusion for our guests. The steepness of our campus enables those lushes’ views from the veranda. They also make our van service is quite the life saver sometimes. Thank you to an awesome staff too! Suzanne we hope to see you again, Pura Vida- Chris

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Additional Information about Tulemar Resort

Address: Tulemar Gardens, Manuel Antonio 6350, Costa Rica (Formerly Buena Vista Luxury Villas)
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Manuel Antonio
Price Range: £163 - £809 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Tulemar Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Tulemar Resort The Premier Resort Hotel in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica Rated as the number 1 resort hotel in Central America and Costa Rica and number 9 in the World by Trip Advisor Tulemar Resort is a full service resort set in the peaceful 33-acre gated and secure Tulemar Gardens Condominium. A wide variety of standalone accommodations are available for our guests, including the famed Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, as well as our luxurious 1, 2, and 3 bedroom Buena Vista Luxury Villas. The property itself is spectacular, nestled in a lush rainforest overlooking the beautiful Manuel Antonio coastline. Surrounded by nature, Tulemar Resort features incredible gardens, walking paths, thriving wildlife, and the ONLY exclusive sandy beach in the region. At Tulemar Resort you will enjoy the luxury and privacy of your very own villa, along with the amenities of a high end resort, including concierge service, daily maid service, 4 swimming pools, beach bar, spa services, tour desk, and the best sunset bar and restaurant in town. We invite you to review our website for photos and details, then book one of these magnificent villas or bungalows and experience the most unforgettable vacation of your life! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Buena Vista Luxury Villas Hotel Manuel Antonio National Park
Buena Vista Hotel And Casas
Tulemar Resort Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio

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