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COSTA RICA RESORT REVIEW

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

Air Canada Vacations Mega FAM – 130 agents from Canada – one Airbus 319

In mid November 2017 I was fortunate to have the opportunity to travel to Costa Rica with Air Canada Vacations. Please find below an overview of the trip, the reviews of the various resorts and an overall impression of the country.

The flight in was smooth and just prior to landing we were lucky to see the beautiful coast of Costa Rica with the many island chains, as well as some volcanic areas just East of the coastal area. Costa Rica features hundreds of volcanoes, however not all have the typical cone shape. There are a few that do, including the volcano in Arenal, one of the largest volcanos in the country. Also, upon landing we witnessed the beautiful green colours of the Costa Rica landscape, which are of course more evident during the rainy season from May to mid November.

After a direct 5 hour flight to Costa Rica’s newest airport in Liberia, in the North Western province of Guanacaste, we headed to our first resort, Dreams Las Mareas, owned by the AMR resort group. This resort is only 2 years old and located very close to the Nicaraguan border. This allows for some interesting excursions into Nicaragua direct from the resort. The resort offer a total of 16 pools! And many different restaurant choices. In regards to the beach, Dreams is set on a large bay with a smaller beach however the water is lovely and warm. In the evening, Dreams Las Mareas treated us to a beautiful dinner on the beach after which we retreated to our rooms which featured Jacuzzis on each balcony.

The following morning we headed off to The Occidental Papagayo resort, a slightly older property but in good condition and a solid 4 star.

We then headed to the Casa Conde resort, a small boutique style luxury cottage resort with wonderful and personal service. They have a couple of beautiful family suites there, with a full kitchen, living room, and 2 bedrooms. Casa Conde offers a couple of accessible suites for anyone needing this type of accommodation.

After Casa Conde we drove to the Secrets Papagayo resort, another AMR resort hotel. Very private accommodations are offered here with many buildings set up high in the hills. Golf carts are available for those who prefer not to walk the sometimes steep inclines. Secrets also features suites with swim up pools and outdoor Jacuzzis. The resort surprised our group by decorating some of the bedrooms (beds) with Welcome ACV spelled out in coffee beans ; ) The Secrets resort also features a beautiful spa area with a tranquil pool. The beach, as the one at Dreams, is a smaller beach however the water is again very warm and welcoming. The resort features several restaurants including restaurants that offer Asian cuisine, healthy cooking, Italian, and a seafood grill. Secrets, as well as Dream (both owned by AMR group) also have a lovely coffee and dessert bar (think Gelato!). You can order all the specialty coffees you desire.

We then departed for the Westin Playa Conchal Golf Resort and Spa. A large property set in a beautifully maintained garden-like surrounding.  An 18 hole golf course is featured onsite. Just like at the Secrets, the Westin also offers many different restaurant choices. We saw many different animal species including a Costa Rican raccoon with a pointy snout, very large iguanas, and some beautiful birds at this resort. And of course the monkeys are never far away either.

In regards to the flora, the resort has a couple of ancient fig trees of which the roots grow above ground and hang from the tree like many long tentacles. When lit up at night it is a beautiful sight. The Westin caters to families and even features special bathroom amenities for the little one.  We stayed at the Westin for 2 nights and our room was situated in a 4-plex on the ground floor. The resort is large so 8- seater golf carts drive around to get you from place to place.

On our drive to Villas Playa Samara on day 3 we witnessed several monkeys playing in the trees and some colourful iguanas. We also saw one of the traditional Costa Rican carts on the road which was being pulled by 2 oxen. These carts are beautifully painted in very bright colours and intricate patterns. They were traditionally used on the fields by the farmers as the solid wheels do not get stuck in the muddy soil.

The resort provided everyone with a pleasant surprise -  it is a small cottage like resort owned by Canadians and has a stunning beach. After welcoming us with fresh coconut juice in the shell as well as steel drum music, they treated us like royalty at a tent-covered beach lunch complete with local entertainment and dancers.

After seeing the Villas Playa Samara, none of us wanted to leave this gorgeous beach however we ventured further and headed to the Tamarindo area. This area is a more established and developed beach resort community with many shops and restaurants. There are a number of ACV resorts in this area, including the Occidental Tamarindo, the Esplendor Tamarindo and the Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort.

We toured the Tamarindo Diria which features several buildings, some right on the beach, and others on the opposite side of the road.  The resort actually owns this stretch of dead-end road which houses restaurants and shops all owned by the hotel. We were again treated to some beautiful local dancing and were able to take a glimpse at the beach during the sunset – the beach is very wide here and surfing is common.

On our last night in Costa Rica, we had a beautiful beach dinner at the Secrets Papagayo and were even treated to fireworks in our honour. It was a display worthy of Canada Day on Parliament Hill : )

Of course, in addition to spectacular resorts, Costa Rica offers many options for adventure tours, including wildlife treks, volcano tours, zip lining, volcanic mud bath excursions, and many more. Our group was guided through Costa Rica by a fantastic tour company that can arrange any of the above tours and more. They also specialize in privately guided excursions.

Then it was time again to head home and our direct flight to Toronto. We look forward to speaking anyone planning a Costa Rican vacation.


Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

OCCIDENTAL PAPAGAYO

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

CASA CONDERT

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

SECRETS PAPAGAYO

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

WESTIN PLAYA CONCHAL

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

VILLAS PLAYA SAMARA

 

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

TAMARINDO

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

SECRETS PAPAGAYO

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency

 

 

 

Costa Rica Resort Tour by Cruise Holidays | Luxury Travel Boutique Mississauga, Kingsway, Etobicoke, Milton, Toronto, Brampton, Guelph, Oakville, Orangeville, Barrie, Ontario cruise travel agency