More about Ocotal Beach Resort
Ocotal Resort on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica at Playa Ocotal was beautiful. Their restaurant was located on a cliff over looking the pacific ocean and gave one of the most beautiful morning views and sunsets that I could imaging while dining. The pools were available all night long...midnight swims were a real treat!
El Ocotal Resort
about US$100/night El Ocotal is built on a hilly region next to the beach and it's beautiful. At the bottom of the hill is a beach and the scuba diving area, then as you climb the hill along the bay are the cabins. The cabins are very spacious with private bathrooms and a nice terrace you can spend time relaxing and watching the ocean. There were refrigerators in the rooms, and they were very comfortable with AC. At the top of the hill is the hotel office and restaurant. We purchased the meal plan and were glad we did. The restaurant had excellent food and even better waitstaff. They were extremely friendly and we got to know individual people there. Occasionally they would cut some fruit and place it on the rail where a cockatoo-like bird would come down and eat it. Dining was very casual - shorts and shirt were ok.
The picture here is of a group of porpoises who were following our dive boat one afternoon.
Great Sunsets, good staff, but best for fishing + diving.
My son and I stayed at the Ocotal Beach Resort for 3 nights in March. We had one of the rooms on the cliff overlooking the ocean, the room was not large, but was well maintained. The bathrooms could be updated a bit. The sunsets are amazing as well as stargazing at night. The staff is excellent and friendly all the way around. Food in the restuarants is average with the buffet breakfast not up to top standards. We went to Coco for dinner each night... there are some good restaurants there. The large pool at the beach is nice, great fun bartenders and a very relaxed convivial feeling. The beach isnt too interesting to swim on, no waves but it is clean. We did not fish or dive but I could tell from the clients and from talking to the dive shop staff and fishing staff that they are first rate. I would recommend this resort for people interested in great sunsets, diving and fishing. Good for honeymooners and retirees or active divers or fishing enthusiasts. Not a place for young families in my opinion. the town of Coco is a $10 taxi round trip... I would probably not stay here again but not because I didn't enjoy it... mainly because we discovered other beaches we preferred more... it was our first trip.
One of the nicest resorts in Costa Rica
This is one of the nicest all-around resorts in Costa Rica, and easily accessible from Liberia Airport, 1/2 hour drive. It offers comfort & luxury, water activities in calm surf with clear water, uncrowded beach, and an awesome sunset, at a reasonable price without being too "North American". While they prefer you stay on-site, it is simple to go to the neighboring town of playa Del Coco to soak in some real Costa Rican culture. It is also a fair driving distance on relatively good roads to the rain forest and other Costa Rican attractions. It is a place where locals and foreigners alike vacation, a nice blend. One problem with Costa Rica is that many resorts are self-contained and mostly only North Americans go to them, so it is difficult to get to know the culture. Or, the resort is extremely remote which usually translates into very expensive (most averaging $100 per day per person on the low end, some as high as $250 per day per person), difficult to get to and little comfort like no a/c not even screens in the windows. While I enjoy theses very much as well, they are definitely not for everyone. So if you want to visit Costa Rica, get a little pampered and have a chance to soak in the culture, Ocotal Beach Resort is worth visiting.
Took our Deposit, Refused refund due to Weather Delay
We were supposed to stay at The Ocotal Beach Resort in Guanacaste, Costa Rica on June 21/22, 2006. Weather caused us to miss our connection and we were not able to arrive in Costa Rica on that day. The reservation was pre-paid with a credit card. When a refund was requested from the reservations manager, Adriana Amador,and the operations manager, Rau Montero, it was refused stating that the "weather is out of our hands". They have been extremely rude and unyielding in their stance. I really DID want to stay there, but I am probably fortunate that I did not. If there attitude is so poor when there is a problem BEFORE my arrival, I would truly question how I would be treated once I got there. From the listing information, it seems like a nice place, but BEWARE of financial dealings with this resort. As of today(7/3/06) the matter is still unresolved and I am forced to take it to the credit card company for resolution. That is not really how I want to spend my free time.
steep hills/fantastic view
We just returned from Costa Rica. The hotel was nice. We stayed in a bungalow with the plunge pool on our side. Loved that, didnt have to leave to catch the sun and cool off. Oh did I mention it was between 95 and 104 degrees. It was hot and we had no rain. Total sun and blue skys. There are some drawbacks to this resort. That would be the steep hill and the thin walls. For others the drawbacks would be no night life and bar area other than the pool bar. We didnt mind that due to we like small quiet resorts. Speaking of quiet, We could hear everything that went on in the other room which means they could hear everything that went on in our room! The room was very nice and the shower was to die for. Huge and great water pressure. However, the noice barrier was poor. We were very lucky because we only had someone next to us for part of the time and they were quiet. The nachos at the pool were wonderful and probally were a main staple for me. The staff is very nice. The best meal we had was in Coco at seafood papaygo. The locals are great. The roads are horrific. When we were told that, I wanted to check it our for myself and see just how bad they were. Wow they are bad!!! We took the the monteverde tour very nice once you got there but not so sure I would do it again. Long ride like 5 hours on terrible roads. The combo tour was fun and just enough time at each activity. We have been to Hawaii, Jamacia, and all over Mexico and this trip was at the top. We wil be back for sure. The next time we will stay in different parts and rent a car to experience all that Costa Rica has to offer. It is a wonderful country.
Ocean front rooms need rehab
Just got back from our trip to Costa Rica. Stayed 5 nights at the Octal. Booked a beachfront room so we'd be close to beach. It is apparent that this part of the hotel needs some work. Faucets leaked all night long. Ants formed a congo line in our room. Location being right on the beach was great and front desk staff helpful and friendly. Beach was clean. Weekends at the beach was a bit crowded with locals coming down to swim. Had a very steep walk up to restaurant. Got some good exercise before each meal. Food was excellent and well presented. Wait staff was warm and charming. Found a great little jewel of a restaurant down the end of the beach "Father Roosters". Nice pub atmosphere. Good food and huge margaritas. Thought tours hotel offered were a bit pricy. Can do better with tours in town. Best part of our stay was a group of 15 howler monkeys that visited in the trees off our porch every day. Very entertaining.
Won't be returning
My 25 year old daughter and I spent a week here in February. This was NOT a luxury resort. The rooms were pretty standard compared to other resorts. Our room had a beautiful view of the ocean and gorgeous sunsets. This came at a price, however, in that it was at the top of the resort and required long walks up steep hills to get to it. When you left your room, you had to make sure you checked that you had everything as returning was not an easy option. The shuttle they refer to is not frequently available. The resort staff was less than helpful, especially the staff for arranging tours. On their website they advertise that they are "nearest resort to the Arenal Volcano." We took that tour and the ride to Arenal was over 3 hours each way over horrific roads with a guide that did not speak any English.
The food was just okay and the morning buffet was below par. As mentioned by others, there is no entertainment. The pool bar closes at 5:30 p.m. and the only other option is to sit at the dining room bar where there is no entertainment. The internet was not operational during our entire stay. They claimed it was down for the entire region, however, the staff were accessing it behind the counter and it worked well in Coco.
The beach was not too inviting as the beach area itself was heavily populated with fishing boats and equipment. The black sand was beautiful, however, the tide was pretty rough while we were there so we didn't swim much. The volcanic shoreline was interesting to investigate, but not easy to navigate.
Trips to Playa del Coco were a necessity. Food and such were reasonably priced throughout the region and the aforementioned Playa Del Coco was a warm and inviting town.
In short, a disappointing trip and not a resort I would return to.
The Ocotal Area
A group of us is thinking of renting a villa for about 10 days in Feb at Ocotal beach. Is there enough to do in the area? Are their restaurants, tours, fishing in this area? How are the beaches at Ocotal? Any other infor about the area would be greatly appreciated.
Re: The Ocotal Area
You will love Ocotal! My family and I just got back last week and had an excellent time. We stayed in Ocotal Resort which is right on the beach...but we saw a lot of Villas which looked like they had excellent views! The beach is quiet and great for swimming or diving. For nightlife and restaurants you can go to Coco Beach which is about a 10min. drive...The seafood is to die for. Two of the days we did tours and were lucky enough to meet a cute couple who own a tour business there...We did river rafting and a tour with horseback riding and the zip line, etc...then they took us to the airport also. Anyway that really made our trip...and I told them I would let everyone I know about their great business. Juan is from Costa Rica and his wife, Carol is from the U.S. You can e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org
Well I hope that is of some help...and enjoy your vacation!
Re: Re: The Ocotal Area
Hello Sharon, I am also looking into OCOTAL. What do you mean when you said you saw some villas with great views? Can you comment on this more?
RE: The Ocotal Area
If you are looking for an incredible Ocotal villa for a group of people I know of one that's still open for the week of March 11-18th.
It was supposed to be my 50th b-day celebration with 8 friends,but I had to cancel because of my job situation. You might want to check out Villa Paraiso in the website www.costaricavillas.com Good Luck!
Re: The Ocotal Area
A little late for your trip, but for those doing a search, check out this site. We stayed at Villa Lapa in 2004 and we have plans to go to Villa Lora in a few weeks. We had a wonderful stay here, and I highly recommend it.