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“An amazing hotel and vacation!!”

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Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort
Ranked #4 of 46 Hotels in Manuel Antonio
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Trumbull, Connecticut
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“An amazing hotel and vacation!!”
Reviewed 8 May 2014

Even though my family and I travel often, I have never written a review on tripadvisor. However, after recently returning from what was probably the best hotel experience I have had, I decided to write a review. My husband and I spent 4 nights at Arenas del Mar, after spending 3 nights at the Guanacaste Marriott and 2 nights at the Tabacon Resort in Arenal. Both of those hotels were beautiful and we had a great time. But we definitely saved the best for last! We arrived in the late evening (after a 6 1/2 hour drive) to the security gate, and were taken by a golf cart to our beautiful room, which had an outdoor hot tub, a mini bar filled with free snacks, and very comfortable beds. We were told to enjoy our dinner before we even officially checked in. The dinner was delicious (try the mushroom risotto and chocolate lava cake, you won't be disappointed). The breakfasts, which are included, were the best. From the plate of fresh fruit, a different fresh squeezed juice every morning, and a full Costa Rican or American breakfast, you won't leave hungry. The property has beautiful foliage. It has it's own private beach and 2 pools. Keep your eyes open, and you might see monkeys, lizards, snakes, birds, sloths, and toucans. We took 2 tours conducted by guides employed by the hotel. We went with Hannia to the national forest and with Ersel on a bird tour on the hotel property. They were excellent guides and extremely knowledgeable (loved Ersel's bird calls). The entire staff at this boutique hotel are so friendly and helpful (including drying our hiking boots that were soaked from getting caught in the rain in the rainforest, helping us speak spanish, and teaching us to make tortillas). We had a problem with the room safe and someone was at our room within 5 minutes of our call. Golf carts were used on the property and always available to drive us up the hill when we didn't want to walk. I can't think of anything this hotel lacks or needs to improve. We will definitely visit Costa Rica again, which is an amazing country, and stay at Arenas del Mar.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Honey1952
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Trumbull, Connecticut
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 7 May 2014

My wife Jill and I just returned from a 10 day visit to Costa Rica. Our last days were spent at Arenas Del Mar in Manuel Antonio. What can I say. The accommodations are wonderful and we used our private Jacuzzi on our patio every day. The rooms are large and clean and welcoming. Want to make an international call home, go ahead it is free. Need some snacks from the mini bar, worried about the cost, don't worry they are free. As a matter of fact tell them what you like and they will try to get it. Want to find a place with a good breakfast, don't leave the hotel breakfast is included and it is a la carte and delicious. Yes maybe other hotels could do that, but could they provide you hiking trails and your own menagerie of animals playing around you as you walk or eat. Sloths with babies climbing trees, white faced monkeys, toucans, snakes, all kinds of birds, and on and on right on the property. How about your own private beach and your walk to Manuel Antonio State Park. But aside from all of this why is this place so great, 38 rooms and 100 staff, who know you and you know them and they make your vacation the best ever. These are the nicest people you ever want to meet. A shout out to Ersel and Hannia, our guides at the resort, so knowledgeable. A shout out to Georgette, Yahaira, and Luis, who served us great meals and taught us Spanish. A shout out to Pri for the great spa treatment and incredible conversation. A shout out to Bryan, and Juan Pablo and others for making us feel so welcome. A shout out to the people, who unfortunately I never met, who dried and cleaned our hiking boots, after we got caught in the rainforest downpour. And a special thank you to David Callan, the owner of this magnificent resort, for building this place, and creating this culture of great people. We will be back and if you are thinking about going to Costa Rica do yourself a favor and go to Arenas Del Mar for an incredibly great experience.

Hasta Luego
Les

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank bearhead12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Memphis, Tennessee
Level 4 Contributor
21 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 May 2014

Hotel:
This hotel was absolutely amazing! It was definitely our favorite place to stay and we didn't want to leave. The drive in was a little stressful, we bottomed out on the drive way, but once you get there it is paradise. From the moment we arrived the staff members were very attentive and nice. You park at the bottom of the hill, at the hotel entrance. Then a staff member drives you to the lobby in a golf cart. That is where you receive your room key, a delicious welcome drink, and information about the hotel. A staff member then drives you to your room in a golf cart and helps you get acquainted with the property. We saw a sloth and lizards on the the way to our room and the driver was kind enough to stop and point them out. The bedding was heavenly, the room was simple yet very comfortable. The mini-bar had free, local snacks and drinks. We were very impressed!

Food:
We quickly went to the pool for a drink. Compared to other places we stayed, the drinks were priced very reasonably, and were delicious! The details of the straws and garnishes were an added bonus. Don't miss happy hour at the main bar for great drink prices, views, and conversation! We had breakfast, lunch, and dinner at the hotel and all of the food was very good (the pancakes for breakfast and mahi mahi fish sticks for lunch were our favorites).

Staff:
All of the staff members were very accommodating and extremely nice. Some staff members needing extra highlight include: Jose & Christian (cart drivers who remembered us by name), Sergio & Bryan (excellent at the concierge desk), Angel (bartender/waiter), and Priscilla (masseur). We met one of the owners, Jeremy, during our stay which was an added bonus! He was very informative and clearly passionate about creating the best experience for his guests.

Activities:
We went to Villa Vanilla spice farm (amazing!!- Giselle gave a great tour), visited Manuel Antonio National Park (definitely take a guide to see the animals), and walked the length of Esparilla beach & had lunch at Marlin restaurant. I definitely encourage you to RELAX while you were here. The views are amazing, there are lots of animals on the property, the staff are delightful, and the environment is perfect for decompressing. Enjoy it!

Room Tip: You can't go wrong anywhere on this property!
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Angela R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cayuga S, Manager at Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort, responded to this review, 5 May 2014
Dear Angela R,
Thank you for visiting us at Arenas del Mar in Manuel Antonio. We appreciate you taking the time to write such a wonderful review. We are happy to hear that the drive down the hill to the beach was compensated by such a great vacation experience for you. We always love to hear about how our staff went out of the way to make your stay really memorable. We also loved the comment about the heavenly bed. Thanks for the great comments on the food. We agree that hanging out at the bar is a great way to mingle with other travelers and exchange Cost Rica stories.
Thanks for sharing some of the recommendations on things to do. Many guests tell us they wished they had stayed more than 4 days at Arenas del Mar to really take advantage of all the great things to do and at the same time relax at the beaches of the resort. Please come back soon if you are in further need of “decompressing”. Greetings from Costa Rica.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milford, New Hampshire
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 May 2014

My wife and I stayed here for four nights with our two teenage daughters . Its was an amazing place and the fun began with the 3-hour transfer from San Jose. George was a great guide and made the long drive fly by with great stories about Costa Rica and family. I still can't believe how big those crocodiles were! We felt at home at Arenas de Mar the moment we arrived. We stayed in building 5, which was close to the pool and main dining area. Our rooms were very comfortable, especially the beds. We are all nature fanatics and this was a perfect combination of the rainforest and beach. The view from the top pool area was breathtaking. From the pool area, we saw sloths, white-faced and howler monkeys as well as over 30 different species of birds. The restaurant Playitas, on the beach, was our go-to place to relax, each lunch and watch the giant lizards.The staff were exceptionally friendly, the food was good, and the service great. We can't emphasize enough how nice the staff all were, especially Ersel, Angel, George, Kenner, and Ronnie. They were helpful, knowledgeable, and engaging.

We are the type of family that can't sit still so our stay involved many off-site adventures. All were a short distance from the resort and Arenas del Mar made all the arrangements. All we had to do was show up ready to go. We went to the Hanging Bridges, Manual Antonio National Park, and white-water rafting on the Savegre. One excursion a day was perfect for our active family allowing us time to enjoy the resort every afternoon. We definitely recommend the Hanging Bridges even if you are afraid of heights as I am. We saw so much wildlife along the trails at the resort that going to Manual Antonio National Park was not as much of an adventure as we anticipated it would be. It was still interesting, just not many birds and lots of people. Our best adventure at Arenas del Mar was the night hike with Ersel. He was a great tour guide and had us engaged right from the very beginning with his animated introduction to what we might see and experience. Hearing monkeys at night and seeing freaky insects/wildlife was worth every moment. Ersel and I also went birding together one morning. He's an experienced guide and we really enjoyed spending time with him and hearing his stories.

We loved the fact that the resort was so ecologically-friendly. No cars, just cool golf carts that brought us anywhere we wanted to go on property. They were life-savers because of the hilly terrain. The resort trails are well done and make you feel like you are inside a much larger forest. We recommend getting up early to enjoy the sunrise on the beach and this is the best time to see wildlife.

We will definitely return to Costa Rica and Arenas del Mar! Pura Vida!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Mike T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cayuga S, Manager at Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort, responded to this review, 5 May 2014
Dear Mike T,
Greetings from sunny Manuel Antonio. We were very excited to read your review about your family’s recent stay with us. We love to have active families at Arenas del Mar. There is so much to do that more and more people tell us that 4 nights are just not enough (just like in your case). Thanks for the great recommendations on tours to take and the comments on all the great wildlife viewing that you experienced. We are happy to hear that you enjoyed the newly designed night walk in our private nature reserve with Ersel so much. We look forward to having you back with us real soon for more “Pura Vida”. Saludos,
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sausalito, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 May 2014

My husband and I recently stayed at Arenas del Mar. We had a lovely room near the lower pool and beach.Two wonderful dinners were on the beach with lighted torches and wonderful music. We loved it. Breakfast and dinners were up above. The friendly staff with their electric cart were ready to take us anywhere on the property at a moments notice. Ersel was an exceptional tour guide through Manuel Antonio National Park and for the night tour on property. Executive sous Chef, Hedmi, created many favorites. I loved the Poki and Breaded Snapper. Also, we loved the Ceviche, both Sea Bass Ceviche and Green Plantain Ceviche. Finally Everyone at the hotel loved the morning breakfast which is included. My favorite was the French Toast with lovely fruit. I hope to return.

Room Tip: We loved being down by the lower pool and beach. We were in room 202 which had a garden view and w...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Dianne S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Billerica, Massachusetts
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 29 April 2014

My wife and I stayed here for 5 nights for our 10th anniversary. When we arrived, there was a complimentary bottle of wine waiting for us in our room. That was just the beginning of a wonderful stay at Arenas.

We were in the 300's building with an Ocean Breeze Superior room. Our room was on the corner, so we actually also had an ocean view, which was incredible. On each balcony there is a mini-fridge with a few complimentary drinks and snacks. The water is safe to drink here, so you only need to bring one water bottle for each person, then just refill from the tap before you head out for the day. (I wish I had known, we stopped at a grocery store on the way and got several bottles of water)

The staff here is great, always ready to help with whatever you need. The first few days we did not use the golf cart transport at all, since the 300's are right between the main lobby/restaurant and the beach, perfectly in between. Yes it is hilly, but if you are even moderately in shape, you're good to walk. When we did finally use the golf carts, they were *really* quick to arrive to take us wherever on the property.

We ate dinner at the restaurant 2 times, and we both enjoyed our meals each time. The service there is very friendly, the food is tasty, and when we mentioned we had not seen any monkeys yet, they were on the lookout for us. Breakfast was awesome, a fresh fruit plate each morning with a different fruit juice, providing a sample of fruits you probably wouldn't otherwise have around. We ate at playitas by the beach a few times also, and we did wonder why some of those same dishes were not available at the Mirador restaurant near the lobby. Specifically, I would recommend the quesadillas there, best one I ever had.

We did the night nature walk with Ersel and saw a long snake, spiders, a large toad, bullfrog, a hard-to-find type of gecko, a sleeping bird and several sleeping dragon flies. He went into a lot of detail explaining the characteristics of these animals, and it was very enjoyable. Highly recommend you do this.

We also had the resort book a zip line tour for us where you zip over the rain forest canopy (incredible) and kayaking in the mangroves (very interesting and good exercise).

I can't wait to someday come back to this place, and this time bring the kids with us, when they are old enough to handle walking in hot temps. Hopefully by then, the resort might include some boogie boards to use, so we don't have to go across the rocks to the beach next door to rent one...

Oh, and I almost forgot to mention. I think we saw a total of 2 mosquitoes in the 5 days we were in Manuel Antonio, even when it had rained... That would make April an awesome time to visit! And the bed, we've never slept so well before, wanted to take it home with us.

Room Tip: We were in the 300's building, and you can hear the ocean from there. It's between the beac...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Timothy D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Waukesha, Wisconsin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 April 2014

The Arenas Del Mar hotel ss one of the most unusual and beautiful hotels I have ever stayed in. It is small and quaint with exceptional service and amazing views. Would definitely recommend this hotel!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank rnaze
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort

Property: Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort
Address: Punta Quepos, Manuel Antonio 60601, Costa Rica (Formerly Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica)
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#2 Spa Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#2 Green Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#3 Luxury Hotel in Manuel Antonio
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Manuel Antonio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located within walking distance of Manuel Antonio National Park, Arenas Del Mar is an extraordinary beachfront and rainforest resort catering to travelers looking for more than the typical luxury hotel experience. Stunning, luxurious, and sustainable, our hotel has 38 rooms with exclusive beach and nature views, nestled in eleven acres of rainforest with private trails and two tree-shaded white sand beaches. Unique among the hotels in Manuel Antonio, our carbon-neutral property offers sustainable, luxurious lodging. As well, we are proud to be the first Costa Rican luxury hotel to have been awarded the Five Sustainability Leaf Award and a Five Star Award. With this stunning location and a myriad of personalized services, on-property activities and land and water-based tours catered for honeymooning couples and families alike, Arenas Del Mar is the perfect base for exploring on your Manuel Antonio vacation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Arenas Del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio

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