We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Great food and nice location, but overpromises and underdelivers on basics”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 5 more sites!
El Sano Banano Beachside Hotel
Ranked #8 of 18 Hotels in Montezuma
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 31 May 2009

The food, especially the seafood, is surprisingly good. Good, friendly staff. And it's nice how they show a movie at night in the restaurant. The hotel is near the beach and other local hangouts, which is good if you want to mingle with others - but it gets noisy at night. But we had a couple of major issues: 1) they claim they have Internet access in the hotel, but you actually have to go to the usually packed Internet store down the street and pay to use the Internet there (i.e. no Internet at the restaurant or in your room); and 2) There is no running water 85% of the time and you have to tell them early in the morning to turn it on so you can shower, etc.

  • Stayed: May 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Travel4441
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (220)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

157 - 163 of 220 reviews

Reviewed 18 May 2009

Nice rooms ,spacious bathrooms. Good breakfrast with a choice off juices, food and fruits. Excellent staff, always fullfilling any need U may have.Close to everything. The chance to enjoy Ylang Ylang resort facilities is a bonus (wonderfull place with a marvellous restaurant).

  • Stayed: May 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank mariaport68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 April 2009

I only stayed here one night, but it was an enjoyable experience. The hotel was perfectly located in the center of town, so we could easily walk around. The staff was very friendly and helpful, room was nice and clean, and the free breakfast was delicious. The area of Montezuma in general is really only geared toward a younger, no frills crowd. It has a chill hippy-vibe, so if you are into that, this place is perfect. The hot water wasn't working, but this didn't bother us very much. Overall, we had an excellent stay.

  • Stayed: March 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank tsac33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 March 2009

I have stayed at this place a couple of times and think it is great value for money - especially when you take into consideration that you can use the facilities at Ylang Ylang (the pricer partner) down the beach. Fabulous food at both places. The only criticim I have is that the last time I went I had booked two double rooms, and specified that I wanted one with two single beds and one double. It was New Year so the town was packed and I am sure they had overbooked - they tried to give us one room with two double beds. I had booked months in advance to avoid this kind of thing - although they at first insisted it wouldn't be possible, after I produced the e-mails (where they had confirmed the two rooms with the single and double beds) they suddenly found a way to make it happen. Otherwise, as I said, great place - great food - I love Montezuma and I would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: January 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank machita99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 March 2009

The rooms were comfortable and service good. The location was good too, but in Montezuma almost everything is within 5 minutes.

It was raining, so the tours we hoped to take were basically all canceled. That did, however, give us an opportunity to spend an afternoon and evening at the sister resort down the beach, the Ylang Ylang. That was very relaxing as we had good drinks and food while we listened to the rain pound away.

One note, this probably isn't unique to the Sano Banano considering the climate, but the reception/restaurant area is floored with glazed tiles which can be very slippery when wet. Watch out.

  • Stayed: September 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank aknla
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 February 2009

We really hated the town of Montezuma and the Sano Banano in general. Well, maybe hate is a strong word but I've never really wished for a vacation to be over before this trip. What everyone says is true, the rooms are dark, musty and stuffy since you cannot open the windows. The air conditioning is a nice touch but I would rather have the option of at least opening the windows. And don't believe the reviews that say the rooms are soundproof. We had a room right next to the kitchen and every morning early morning I was woken by the sound of clanking dishes, moving furniture or stacking and unstacking chairs. We usually went to eat breakfast by 7 or earlier because it was impossible to sleep. Since our room faced the street I also heard the delivery trucks at the supermarket next door every morning. Also, since our room faced the street we never felt comfortable opening the blinds so the room was always dark and really miserable to be in.

There is a free breakfast included in the rate, but the food is mediocre and bland and we actually paid to eat elsewhere rather than eating there every day. The waitstaff is friendly but the woman at the front desk seemed like she always had an attitude (and we are from New York City-definitely used to attitudes). Literally seconds after we arrived she tried to insist that we had to sign up for a tour the following day or there wouldn't be spots left and we were like, "Jeez, can we relax a minute!!!" We actually made it a point to book tours outside of the hotel just so the cash wouldn't go in her pocket. Also, they said on the website having traveler's checks is fine but no one in the town (including the hotel) takes traveler's checks so the day we arrived we had to take a taxi to the bank in Cobano (about 20 minutes away) and change most all of our money. Waiting at the bank took about 2 hours, I do not recommend it.

Anyway, the beach in Montezuma is filthy, there is so much trash washed up on shore it's disgusting and was rather shocking since Costa Rica touts itself as such an environmentally friendly haven. We practically wanted to organize a beach clean up.

I would post pictures of the filthy beach but our fourth day there (We were farther down the beach on Playa Grande) our backpack and camera were stolen. We let our guard down for literally a second and someone came and snatched our bag and fled into the woods. We then found a chair and a clearing in the woods behind the beach where this person had apparently been watching us all afternoon just waiting for the right moment to rob us which was rather creepy. I speak spanish and after speaking to some of the security guards on the beach, they told me that unfortunately robberies along the beach are very common and that it's good that we didn't catch the guy who robbed us because they tend to be armed with guns or knives. Great!. The security guards were nice but said they couldn't do anything We really were not feeling the Pura Vida spirit. In fact, when we told the people at the hotel they had the same reaction. Just shrugged and said this stuff happens-it's a gang of teenagers who live in another city and come to Montezuma to rob tourists. So apparently they know who it is and it happens all the time but nothing can be done about it. Great. I just wish there had been more warnings about it or signs posted or something.

The town of Montezuma itself is nice for maybe one day but after that it is boring and none of the restaurants are particularly good. I would not recommend it for anyone over the age of 22. My husband and I are both 30 and still like to party and have a good time but that was not to be in Montezuma. It's filled with a bunch of ex-pats who for some reason thought it was a good idea to open up restaurants making lasagna, pizza, and organic vegetarian food in Costa Rica. Fine. Whatever, but the food they made was not even remotely good. We found it hard to get any kind of really good authentic or even Latin food there. Instead we found ourselves eating a lot of bland tofu, bland Italian food, bland fish and so on.
There was one good barbecue place on the corner but I could have gotten the same food at home. The bars play awful American music that make you feel like you're at a frat party in the United States. Chico's bar even has strobe lights and smoke machines. We preferred just sitting on the beach at night.

And finally, my husband is black and tall and so we couldn't walk two feet without someone coming up to us calling him negro (spanish for black) and trying to offer him cocaine. Costa Ricans in the town were constantly looking at him suspiciously because apparently most black people in Costa Rica are poor and live on the Caribbean coast. We found that amusing since we were actually the ones who were victims of crime and my husband is a college professor. I think if you're looking for a very inauthentic Costa Rican experience, with bland American food, a ton of American ex pats, a filthy beach and the high likelihood that you will be robbed then you might just enjoy Montezuma. Similarly, if you want to stay in a dark, musty,noisy, and stuffy room stay at the Sano Banano. I think there are much better deals in town with more privacy and more outdoor space to relax.

Overall, we just found our experience at Sano Banano and in Montezuma very disappointing.

  • Stayed: January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank plumeriagirl99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 January 2009

We originally had a reservation at El Sano Banano as we read in TripAdvisor what a value it was. Yes, it is a value for $75 a night and the room was clean, but the windows in the rooms did not open. When they showed us our room, the room smelled musty, which was a deal killer for my husband who has allergies. The bathroom was moldy. Also, the room did not have a safe, which is not tenable. When you want to lay on the beach, you can't have your passports out in the open on the beach. They have a TV, but at best, it's a 10 inch TV which they didn't have a remote control for. The curtains did not close at all. We were essentially exposed.

We went down to the reception and checked into the sister hotel, Ylang, Ylang which also proved to be a problem, but at least they said that they did not charge us for the Hotel Sano Banano.

  • Stayed: January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
1  Thank minno20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
uumatter, Administrator at El Sano Banano Beachside Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 21 January 2009

Since you, in all honesty, did not stay at the El Sano Banano Village Hotel, I think your review is quite misleading.

The Rooms are clean, the curtains work just fine and the TV's are 14 inch. Regarding any musty odor and mold in the bathrooms, this is very unlikely as our units are air conditioned.

The rooms are secure units and have fixed glass for sound barrier & energy saving reasons. They have quiet AC's and warm showers.

The rate is for double occupancy & includes breakfast as well as all taxes and service fees... no hidden costs. At $75/nite, it's a real deal.

I personally believe that no matter how good the accommodation or food may be, a negative comment would be forthcoming in lieu of the effort and love put into it.

Nevertheless, El Sano Banano offers the best deal in town and our friendly staff welcomes you.

Lenny

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Montezuma hotels
0 mi away
Hotel El Jardin
Hotel El Jardin
#6 of 18 in Montezuma
336 reviews
0 mi away
Hotel Aurora
Hotel Aurora
#15 of 18 in Montezuma
212 reviews
1.5 mi away
Nature Lodge Finca los Caballos
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.3 mi away
Hotel Amor de Mar
Hotel Amor de Mar
#3 of 18 in Montezuma
427 reviews
0.2 mi away
Hotel Los Mangos
Hotel Los Mangos
#13 of 18 in Montezuma
249 reviews
0.1 mi away
Luna Llena Hotel
Luna Llena Hotel
#7 of 18 in Montezuma
276 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to El Sano Banano Beachside Hotel? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about El Sano Banano Beachside Hotel

Address: | In Front of the Park Montezuma, Montezuma, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Montezuma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 18 Hotels in Montezuma
Price Range: £53 - £79 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — El Sano Banano Beachside Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on the main street in the heart of Montezuma, this hotel offers 11 comfortable rooms that are economically priced just a block from the beach. The rooms are above the well-known restaurant and have A.C., hot showers and SkyTV. The rooms are quiet and secure for those who prefer in-town comfort. Breakfast is included and the hotel guests are welcome to use the pool and hammocks at Ylang Ylang Beach Resort, just a 10-12 minute walk on the beach from Montezuma. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com and Ebookers so you can book your El Sano Banano Beachside Hotel reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing