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“Just like camping!”
Review of Villas Rio Mar

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Villas Rio Mar
Ranked #3 of 14 Hotels in Dominical
Certificate of Excellence
A TripAdvisor Member
“Just like camping!”
Reviewed 28 February 2006

This hotel is very interesting. It isn't like any hotel we have ever been to before. Each building is divided into four rooms. Each room is divided into two areas--the living/kitchen area which is separated from the outdoors by bug netting and then lockable shutters which separates off the bedroom and bathroom area. It seems like camping and there are dozens of bugs and crawlies in the rooms--a little off putting at first, but remarkably in the bedroooms at night, there were no bugs! (at least that we could see or hear!) The cleaning staff could be better as there was a cigarette butt on our bathroom floor from day one (we stayed there three nights and we don't smoke) and the fact that there is an envelope in the room in which to put tips for the cleaning staff was a little gauling given the uncleanliness of our room. Beds are really hard and the pillows are horrible--little bits of chopped up foam. Breakfasts were alright. OJ was awful. Hotel is great at organizing tours etc. although not so great at giving you your morning wake up call for the tour...! Pool and area were nice in the evenings when the sun was going down but not that great during the day when there is no shade to be found. The price is a little steep for one step above camping, but if you are prepared for the "camping" experience, this is actually a nice hotel.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 26 January 2006

My girlfriend and I stayed there after the new year and were extremely disappointed with the standard accommodations. Our bungalow was filthy and dilapidated. We were fortunate enough to upgrade to their junior bungalow suite, which I highly recommend should you decide to stay there. It's worth the difference in price.

  • Stayed January 2006
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6 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Santa Cruz, CA
Level Contributor
215 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 205 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 January 2005

Our family of six stayed a Villas Rio Mar in June 2004, while attending the excellent AEC Language School in Dominical, CR. Villas Rio Mar is "up the river" Baru, which forms the northern boundary of the village of Dominical. While you walk or drive up the bank of the river to get to the resort, it actually has very little influence on the resort.
We found Villas Rio Mar to be a delight. Rooms are generally four to a building, so we had three out of four rooms in a nice cabin about 50 yards from the pool and dining area. Meals are tasty and reasonably priced, and there is a meal plan of sorts that allows you to select from a slightly limited menu for $5.00 for breakfast and $10.00 for lunch and dinner (as I recall). The service is very nice and you soon get to know Juan and Sylvia and the other staff by name.
Anna has a desk near the main office and was able to book numerous eco-tourism trips for us. She is helpful and professional, and not pushy. We ended up booking five events that I can remember in the local area, including zip-lining in the jungle, and lovely horseback ride to a waterfall, a trip to Corcovado, afternoon surfing, and the butterfly farm.
VRM is not a high rise American-style resort with spas and high prices. It's set a half mile from a quiet surfing town with local staff and reasonable prices. We're going back this May, and have bought property in Dominical due to the pleasant feel of the town and the country. You will not be disappointed.

  • Stayed June 2004
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22 Thank Chuck, Santa Cruz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Villas Rio Mar

Property: Villas Rio Mar
Address: 800 m north from the Dominical entrance along the Baru river, Dominical 185-8000, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Dominical
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Dominical
#4 Romantic Hotel in Dominical
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Villas Rio Mar 3*
Number of rooms: 52
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Dominical ***Eco-Hotel Resort near Uvita & Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica Relax in true nature while enjoying a wide range of amenities! Villas Rio Mar is an internationally recognized 3 Star Eco hotel located in a stunning natural setting; an easy 10 minute walk from the fun and the beach of Dominical. Whether traveling as a couple or with family, Villas Rio Mar offers a wide range of amenities guaranteed to make your holiday worry-free and enjoyable. Our hotel includes 52 rooms and can also host medium-sized groups. Our spacious tropical gardens provide privacy and include many beautiful plants, flowers, and birds, which one can observe from outdoor patio areas located in front of the rooms. One of the best restaurants in the area, El Rancho, is located at Villas Rio Mar. The area offers a wide array of leisure and adventure activities including beautiful beaches, four National Parks, and many other nature & wildlife reserves. A wide range of amenities: spacious tropical gardens, jungle trails, large swimming pool with pool bar, quality restaurant & bar (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinks), international sports programming, room service, billiard table, darts, foosball, kids’ play area, mini golf, outside gym, tennis court, tour & transport services, massage, nail studio, and other body treatments. 4 room types to choose from: 48 of the 52 rooms have an outdoor patio area with garden views, rooms with AC & TV available, family-sized rooms available (limited), rooms with kitchenette available, mini-fridge and ceiling fans in every room Great price for an excellent service: professional staff, free wi-fi throughout the hotel, complimentary parking, free rental car drop-off (airport & Villas Rio Mar), group discounts available, seasonal discounts; May>Dec. 15th, book now & pay later! Beautiful, easily accessible, with lots to do: - Stunning natural beauty, gorgeous beaches, and nearby tropical jungle teeming with exotic wildlife - Many beaches, national parks, and adventure tours - Easily accessible from SJO International Airport via newly paved roads (<3 hours) - 10 min. walk to Dominical - 15 min. walk to the beach - Relaxing natural setting - Private and secure Meetings & Events: conference room & event planning services for businesses, weddings & private events ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Villas Rio Mar Hotel Dominical
Hotel Rio Mar
Rio Mar Hotel
Villas Rio Mar Costa Rica/Dominical

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