In my second trip to Costa Rica, I had very high expectations. In 2005 my wife and I celebrated our Honey Moon at the Tabacon Spa near the Arenal Volcano. We had the time of our lives and were treated with absolute professionalism. Unfortunately, Ylang Ylang was not able to offer a similar experience.
In almost every aspect of the resort, it seems to fall short of our prior experiences.
It is a beautiful place, and offers its guests an opportunity to experience some of Costa Rica's natural beauty. The problem, however, lies in the reality that there are far better opportunities in the country to do so at a better price and without the hassle of walking 20 minutes to 1/2 an hour (one way) each time you want to go into the lively, Bohemian atmosphere that Montezuma offers.
The food was OK, but considering the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables that Costa Rica has to offer, the quality seemed to leave a great deal to be desired. And once again, did not match up to the standards offered by Tabacon, for example. This lack of quality was often masked by the chef's inclination to add a significant amount of butter to his/her dishes.
The beach area is not ideal for swimmers, as the ocean there can have very strong rip currents, nor does it offer the type of surf that you can find at Malpais or Playa Hermosa. The nearby campsites also ruin the walk to and from the town as campers leave the sand a mess and are accompanied by dogs that defecate all over the place.
If you are looking for wildlife, Ylang Ylang offers an opportunity to see cappuccino and howler monkeys, as well as iguanas walking the property, but it does not even match what you will experience heading down towards Manuel Antonio or Monteverde. Having visited both places we were fortunate to see everything from Sloths to Crocodiles, humming birds to a Quetzal.
We looked forward to the luxury tent as we thought it would give us the opportunity to add a sense of "adventure" to our stay. The unfortunate aspect of it was that it was just too warm (the installed ceiling fan did very little to remedy things) and, despite what members of it's staff told us, we were "eaten" by mosquitoes.
Lastly, and perhaps most disturbing, was the gross lack of sincerity demonstrated by the manager Caya. Upon our arrival, he spoke to me and my family with cordiality ad nauseum. It became evident as our trip progressed that this was clearly insincere.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This family-owned resort is known for its natural tropical beauty, variety of wildlife roaming the grounds and outstanding customer service. Located a 10-15 minute walk on the beach from Montezuma, one will find romantic Beach Front Bungalows with A/C, a Spa nestled in the jungle, and a tropical pool edged by waterfalls. If you're looking to get away, this is the getaway place. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Ylang Ylang Beach Hotel Montezuma
- Ylang Beach Hotel
- Ylang Beach Resort