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“Wonderful Family Vacation”

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Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo
Ranked #2 of 13 Hotels in Gulf of Papagayo
Certificate of Excellence
Birmingham, Michigan
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Wonderful Family Vacation”
Reviewed 5 January 2014

Our family of 5 including children 21, 16, 13 just returned from a wonderful 10 night Festive Season (Christmas) vacation to this wonderful property. It was our second visit having previously stayed there in December 2008. We enjoy the Four Seasons brand and this property does not disappoint. From the moment we stepped foot off the plane we were greeted by FS personnel and driven 45 minutes to the resort.

When we arrived we were greated by Pascal (Manager) and staff and given cold scented towels and fresh coconut beverage.

Here are some details of our stay:

Staff: Solicitous and wonderful. Especially fond of Carlos Ugalde at Papagayos, Viviana, and Jeffrey and Henry at the Pool. Pascal was kind enough to find a live feed of the Michigan Bowl Game and had treats and a large screen for us - GO BLUE!

Food: Although very expensive (!) the restaurants are excellent. Our favorites are Carocol Steakhouse and Marea at the Beach Club, and Di Mare. There are 5-6 to choose from.

Side Trips: Plenty to choose from. We did snorkeling on a catamaran, Rain forest tour, and a nature tour. You can also Zip Line.....

Tennis: Run by Peter Burwash. 4 har-tru courts and 1 grass. very good instructors.

Golf: We do not golf but a gorgeous course.

Pools: Very nice with excellent food/beverage service.

Room Tip: We stayed in connecting rooms 3305-3306 overlooking the ocean. We specifically requested these room...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
5 Thank GOBLUE1984
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FSCOSPFGM, General Manager at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, responded to this review, 8 January 2014
GO BLUE - thank you for taking the time to share your feedback and vacation impressions with us. FESTIVE is always a great time of the year and we are happy to know our teams, especially the ones you mention, made it that much better. And we will continue with fun activities and amenities all year long- our tenth anniversary. Get better, year after year. So make sure to come back soon. Pura Vida, Pascal Forotti, General Manager.
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Ossining, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2014

Too pricey, boring for teenagers, dirty beaches, food just fair. Needs updates. Not the most beautiful local. Very disappointed in the area. If we go back to Costa Rica it will be near the beaches and rain forest.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank MJ C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FSCOSPFGM, General Manager at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, responded to this review, 8 January 2014
Dear MJ C, it is unfortunate to read that your stay was not one of the best and that your teenagers felt bored. Please let me know any great activities or ideas we could implement to make it more exciting for them. We are SO EAGER to get feedback. With a tenth anniversary coming up, we want to be your place of choice in gorgeous Costa Rica. Best Regards, Pascal Forotti, General Manager.
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Boston, Massachusetts
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 January 2014

Just spent 10 days at the Four Seasons in Costa Rica. If you are looking for a very relaxing, beautifully run resort on two lovely beaches then this may be the place. Stayed in their standard room which includes a large porch with direct ocean views. Staff was exceptional. Despite 500 guests at the very peak of the year (Xmas to New Year) their service was always on and they remembered our names throughout the property.
Typically, Caribbean resorts all lack for something (mostly the service), but not this Four Seasons. The GM was constantly visible walking the property many times per day and chatting with guests. Everyone down to the gardeners trimming the plants greeted you and were extremely pleasant.
The resort was not perfect, but the misses were so small they were hard to bother with. In case management reads this there were simply two things worth fixing: Your White wines were regularly served too warm (at all restaurants) and the Papagayo Restaurant was terrific for breakfast but not well done at dinner (poor menu, poor execution).
Generally the food was good to very good. DiMare restaurant was the best and the sushi in the Tico lounge is worth mentioning due to its exceptional freshness. We also enjoyed lunches on the beach where the service was very fast and truly terrific. Its a better alternative then going into the restaurants at lunch time.
Paddle boarding, beach volleyball and the stair hikes are all worth trying. Golf on their course was spectacular (although hot!) The local zip lining place is well run but not exceptional if you have done zip lining before. Also, we did a half day catamaran snorkeling trip. The snorkeling is unexceptional but seeing a Mother/Baby Humpback pretty much made the day.
Generally speaking, I would highly recommend this hotel.

Room Tip: Any of the basic 4 building s are very good. Most accessible is Building #2. All rooms face the oc...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank MJR1964
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FSCOSPFGM, General Manager at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, responded to this review, 3 January 2014
Dear MJR, Thank you very much for your feedback and taking the time to write the review after 10 days with us. It was a great couple of weeks and Festive was fun for all, with many new activities offered this year. The team is what makes a difference and thank you for commending them. Appreciate the feedback on the wine and menu offerings - we will look into those. I hope you visit us again in the near future and do not wait until December. Pura Vida, Pascal Forotti, General Manager.
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Washington, DC
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 January 2014

We spent a week here in early December. It is a beautiful property, the rooms are large and clean and service is wonderful. There are a number of activities on property which is good because it is a long bumpy car ride to most of the off property excursions. We were a bit disappointed in that we would have liked to have seen more of Costa Rica but could not face all of the driving time. Because the roads to many of the attractions are dirt, it can take hours to go to a destination just 35 miles away. If we were to do it over again, we would plan to stay at different hotels for a day or two each to allow us to see the volcano, cloud forests, etc. without 7 hours in the car each day. As many have noted, the food is not up to par for the price and our expectations. It is not terrible, just not what you expect in a place where the rooms are more than $650 a night in low season. We liked the Beach Club best and when my husband caught a Mahi, they made the most awesome ceviche from it. They have a reduced price for cooking your fish and did a great job. We ate once at the gold course restaurant. Please note that if you order the Costa Rican filet (grass fed) vs. the standard (grain fed) filet, you should order it rare. I ordered medium rare and it was pretty tough while a dinner companion ordered it rare and it was fine. I highly recommend the bird watching walk if you like birds. It leaves a bit late for optimal viewing but the guide we had new his birds, where to find them and brought a spotting scope that you could attach a cell phone camera to. Unfortunately we did not know that in advance and only had regular cameras but the photos on other peoples cells were excellent. We did one off property excursion with the hotel and another with tours your way. They were both good but we preferred tours your way since they did everything our way making sure we spent time on the things we wanted to see. Unfortunately they have a 4 person minimum for many excursions and our friends left before we did so we could not take more of them. It is definitely worthwhile to have them stop at a grocery store to pick up snacks and soft drinks if you drink a lot of them or are using your duty free liquor for happy hour in the room. We new the Four Seasons would be expensive but did not pay attention to the hotel taxes in advance. They total 23% between the resort tax and the room tax. I would recommend renting a golf cart and driving the course at 4 (the earliest they let non golfers do this). There are more animals out as you get near to sunset. Just be sure to only do the first 9 holes if you are stopping for photos or you might be getting back after dark (and they start looking for you then)

Room Tip: We paid the higher rate to have a room on the top floor. I would not have wanted to be on the ground...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank drcorley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FSCOSPFGM, General Manager at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, responded to this review, 3 January 2014
Dear drcorley, I truly appreciate your feedback and coming from a senior contributor, I am glad to know you had a great time in Costa Rica. Wonderful you enjoyed all the activities we offer - especially the nature hikes. And did you have a chance to try the bikes we have? Maybe next time ... do not wait too long. Pura Vida, Pascal Forotti, General Manager
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Ardmore PA
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 December 2013

Well – they did it again - and it remains a fabulous experience!!

Earlier in December we were again vacationing in Costa Rica at this lovely property. (Now our 15th time). The facilities, staff, and dining were excellent – as we’ve come to expect.

We were personally greeted by Ms. Camilla Ruckendorfer who not only warmly welcomed us, but also saw that we had a fabulous Canopy Suite with plunge pool, and checked in on us repeatedly during our stay. She is a very special person, and truly insures that guests have a wonderful experience. We could not have been better cared for and felt truly welcomed – it has become a true home away from home!

Carlos Ugalde, our breakfast server was fabulous and is the “ambassador” of Papagayo. Every morning he made certain that the breakfast was “perfect” – and his knowledge of American football is very impressive (we’re big NFL fans.)

Henry at Tico’s Bar similarly serves in this capacity in the PM deserves high compliments. He “makes it happen” – These individuals helped make our stay truly personal and should be very highly commended. While all staff were great, there was one pool attendant whose name escapes me who was also particularly helpful!

This time we took a side trip to Tamarindo with a close friend – a picturesque surfing town 45 min. away – with large beaches (perfect for strolls) and a local hotel which supplies day passes so that you can change clothes / bathing suits or even lounge by their pool. The Staff at the Four Seasons arranged the car rental and even programed its GPS. Driving was very easy – absolutely no problem.

We plan to return again very soon!!

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Harry Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FSCOSPFGM, General Manager at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, responded to this review, 3 January 2014
Dear Harry, 15 times… what an honor! We are doing something right! Thank you for being such a loyal guest and for recognizing our staff, they are the ones who really make this place what it is; I will share your comments with them all and of course, we are looking forward to welcoming you again for #16! Best regards, Pascal Forotti, General Manager.
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Level 6 Contributor
330 reviews
72 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 260 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 December 2013

Four Seasons resort was pretty close to perfect. The staff - especially Alfonso (concierge) were excellent. If you are trying to maximize your time, here are some suggestions for what to skip and what to not miss if you are going as a couple.

Don't miss:
1. Paddle boarding - a great place to try for the first time in the bay
2. Cooking classes - pastry chef was fantastic
3. Chocolate class - was worth the extra cost to make chocolate from seed
4. Guacamole and chips with margarita pitcher on the beach
5. Argentine espanadas at Tico's Bar
6. Oreo crunch milkshake and turkey, classic, or kobe burger from the Burger Shack (by golf club)
7. Breakfast at Papagayo (fajitas and fresh fruit)
8. Coffee drinks from coffee bar
9. Bamboo massage from spa
10. Jumping into any of the pools at FS

Okay to skip:
1. Running outside (the "running trail" is actually running in the road on a windy road with a high risk of getting hit by a car) - would have been great to have sidewalks to walk or run to beach and golf club from the resort
2. Tennis - there is no view and the courts are a little worn
3. Stargazing - this event was a disappointment - the people running it did not know much about astronomy
4. Cybex treadmills in 3rd row of fitness room (hard on the joints)
5. "Old School" headphones in fitness room

Would have loved to dine at Di Mare but it was closed for entire trip (except the first night). It would have been great to have more dinner choices at the resort (that were open), but we enjoyed service and food/drink.

The balcony off of room was beautiful! Can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank dreamtravelreviewer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FSCOSPFGM, General Manager at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, responded to this review, 27 December 2013
Dear guest,
Thank you for the great advices to all the travel community, very useful! I am happy to know that you had an “almost” perfect stay. Thank you as well for the feedback on the things we could improve. Pura Vida, Pascal Forotti, General Manager.
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Ko Samui, Thailand
Level 6 Contributor
267 reviews
228 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 462 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 December 2013

This is a great Four Seasons. We were in Costa Rica for three weeks and stayed in six hotels. It was the final splurge of the trip and we picked it to relax in after our wildlife and nature adventures. For this is was absolutely fit for purpose but pretty much everywhere else had more interesting countryside, flora and fauna.
The layout of the hotel is fantastic with an ‘activity’ beach next to the busier family friendly pools and a ‘relaxing’ beach next to the adult pool with all the amenities and restaurants in the middle.
Our room was a one bedroom canopy suite which was perfect space with separate bedroom, living room and a large terrace with two sun loungers, a dining table for four and the ubiquitous Costa Rican hammock. Furnishings are all good quality Four Seasons standards. We would have preferred a Nespresso machine (or similar) to the weak filtered offering.
We stayed four days and it was the perfect length of time. We did not like the main restaurant offering – too big and too buffet (a la carte too) or the bar much as it lacked atmosphere. The Italian restaurant was the best offering on site for us. The other nights we had room service (poor), ate at the Golf club (OK) and the Beach club (best). This was just before Christmas and the hotel was not full but we still needed to make reservations to be sure of a table so I’m not sure how it will cope over the festive season. The tuna sashimi was world class.
The staff were mixed. The bar and breakfast staff could have used a bit of training and were not the standard we had encountered in the rest of Costa Rica but the housekeeping staff, golf cart drivers and beach guys were delightful. The best staff by miles were the ones in the off-site beach club.
For golfers I reckon the course would be paradise. We did the little free tour in golf carts and were spellbound by how beautiful and manicured it was.
This hotel really is a five but the food options would mark it down slightly for me but still hold an overall Excellent rating. The four is because of the add ons of tax, service and the open tip which really do make the hotel very expensive. The price on the menu just does not represent what you pay – I would much have preferred inclusive prices. I think the US expression is we felt nickel and dimed?

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Fleetcat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FSCOSPFGM, General Manager at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, responded to this review, 27 December 2013
Dear Fleetcat,
I am glad you enjoy most of your stay with us, and also, I appreciate your comments on the things you think need some improvement. I will share them with our teams. We are changing all the coffee machines in all the rooms this coming year, so next time you come, you are able to enjoy your coffee in the room the way you want! Best regards, Pascal Forotti, General Manager.
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Additional Information about Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo

Property: Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo
Address: Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Gulf of Papagayo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#2 Spa Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#2 Luxury Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo 5*
Number of rooms: 184
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Also Known As:
Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica At Peninsula Papagayo Hotel Gulf Of Papagayo
4 Seasons Resort Costa Rica At Peninsula Papagayo
Four Seasons Costa Rica
Four Seasons Liberia
Peninsula Liberia
Liberia Peninsula
Liberia Four Seasons

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