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Reviewed January 25, 2021

My Fiancee and myself wanted a quick holiday before the actual holidays and so we started to look at Central American and some potential Caribbean islands to visit. We landed on Costa Rica and because I had been there before but never to the Playa Flamingo/Tamarindo area we started to look around that side of the country. We decided we wanted and all inclusive so we didn't have to deal with meals or alcohol. We could just enjoy the trip, the country and the beach. When we did our search we found Margarittaville was one of the only all inclusive options around but also we thought had some other great benefits.

The property has a large pool with a swim up bar with some amazing bar tenders who greet you with a smile every time. And across the street is a great beach with a huge bay to snorkel and swim in. We preferred this beach much more than Tamarindo which we visited for a day. The drive to Tamarindo wasn't bad but we honestly didn't leave the resort of Playa Flamingo much.

The beach has people seeing services and excursions like any other touristy beach but the people were respectful and remembered you from the days before. So, they weren't bothering you constantly. The hotel well bring chairs out on the beach for you and Angel will bring your favorite cocktail to you on the beach.

We went scuba diving one day with Rocket Frog which has a dive shop on site. They were great to work with and we got to see some humpback whales playing and breaching on the way back to shore. Lucky us.

The food

Parking was free with your stay.

Room tip: Request a ground floor room if you want a hammock on your balcony
Date of stay: December 2020
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Ryan K
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Rosaura Navarro, Guest Services / Front Office at Margaritaville Beach Resort Playa Flamingo, responded to this reviewResponded March 2, 2021

Dear Ryan,

Thank you very much for choosing the Margaritaville Beach Resort Playa Flamingo for your recent travels to Costa Rica!

Commitment to service and guest satisfaction is our main focus and we are delighted to hear you enjoyed your stay. The pride and dedication our hotel team takes in providing exceptional customer service to our valued guests speaks strongly of our efforts to ensure everyone gets the PURA VIDA experience!

Thank you again for taking the time to provide us with your feedback and we look forward to serve you again soon.

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Reviewed January 13, 2021

We recently stayed for a 3 nights stay on the all-inclusive package. We loved the location which has one the best beaches in Costa Rica right by the hotel.

We loved the pool area. The bar was great and we had snacks by the pool each day. The bartenders were all friendly and quick to notice when we needed something. The pool was great and the temperature was good, though was a little busy at times as the resort seemed full. Despite this, we will still able to social distance. The only downside is you need to have your towels on chairs by 6 am or all the best spots (ie with larger table/umbrella some shade) were already taken.

The beach is right across the road and we could get drinks and food served there. We used the hotels boogie boards a couple of times. The beach had great waves if you like that.

We just had a standard room, but it was clean and spacious with a fold out love-seat bed. Due to covid, there was no in room service unless requested. We did not need it during our stay. Beds were comfortable as was our room temperature with AC and a ceilings fan.

The staff was super friendly and helpful. In particular Jessica at the front desk was so nice and really helped us when we wanted to extend our stay for a night, as the resort was very full. She seemed genuinely interested each day whether we were comfortable and enjoying our stay.

For the all-inclusive, you could order off the menu at any of the restaurants or go to the buffet when it was available. It included food snacks from the pool menu. Breakfast was a buffet in the restaurant and had hot and cold foods. It was good.

As for COVID, we felt very safe at the resort. The pool chairs have been properly distanced, there are mask requirements and the restaurants require hand washing and a temperature check. We felt the resort is taking the virus seriously and has put in proper protocols to ensure guest and staff safety.

We would go back again as the experience was great!

Date of stay: January 2021
Trip type: Travelled with family
2  Thank 0Canada
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Raquel Salas, Guest Services / Front Office at Margaritaville Beach Resort Playa Flamingo, responded to this reviewResponded March 2, 2021

Dear Guest,

We are delighted to have been your chosen hotel during your recent travels to Costa Rica, for us it was truly a pleasure to serve you.
We appreciate your business and value your honest feedback. Your comments have been shared with the hotel team.

Kind regards and we hope you choose us to create more memories with us whenever your travels bring you back to Margaritaville Beach Resort!

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Reviewed January 6, 2021 via mobile

I came to this hotel when it was a different chain and it was a completely different story. It was a clean place with good service, good food and an unbeatable location. The story today is the total opposite except for the location.

Pros: is right across one of the most beautiful beaches in CR, Flamingo Beach, which has one of the most amazing sunsets you will ever see. Parking is usually a nightmare, which is what you don’t have to go through staying at this hotel.

Cons: where do I start... I guess from the beginning. We arrived to the hotel on a Monday at around 2:30 pm. Check out is at 3 pm. The room was not ready until 3:35 pm, and we were not the only upset customers, there were many others waiting for their room.
The common areas are dirty, with trash in the floor and tables, it takes them too long to notice and clean. The music is loud and the sane songs repeat over and over again, if you were thinking relaxation go to the beach across the street. I ordered a smoothie that I could not drink due to the amount of sugar they put in it. It looks like they offer all inclusive service, I only paid for the room and thank God I did, cause the food is awful, and the reason I know is because breakfast was included with the room. There is a guy at 3 pm with a coffee station that goes around offering coffee, he literally screams the whole time he goes around, like if people could not see the coffee machine on the station. I felt like at a soccer game and not at a relaxing vacation...
We saw guests getting in the pool with their cloths on (a polo shirt or work out cloths) and even worse the next day they were wearing the same clothing and getting inside the pool again, nobody from staff said anything. I took a picture of it. You would thing is common sense to wear a bathing suit to get into a pool but not here... we also saw a woman nursing her baby inside the pool!! What if some of the liquids get into the pool??!!! I wanted to throw up when I saw that and of course I am not getting inside the pool. I don’t get why the hotel is full of people like this, it is not an expensive hotel but is not cheap either...
The rooms are nicely decorated but the pillows are huge and the mattress are suuuuper uncomfortable, you wake up with pain in your neck and back.

We are not coming back to this place which is a shame because the place has a wonderful location but it is really not worth.

If you want to relax and have a good time, eat decent food at a clean place and have a good sleep this is not the place for you.

Date of stay: January 2021
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank glendaqm
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Raquel Salas, Guest Services / Front Office at Margaritaville Beach Resort Playa Flamingo, responded to this reviewResponded January 10, 2021

Dear Glenda

Thank you for taking the time to share us your opinion about your recent stay in our Resort. And well, in the first place I would say that you may refer to the Hotel when it used to be Flamingo Beach Resort. Nowadays it is Margaritaville Playa Flamingo, therefore under a different name and concept, according properly to the Brand; however commitment to service and guest satisfaction has always been our main focus. Indeed our Hotel Team, works hard day by day, to make sure all of our valuable guests have positive experiences, providing them with a quality food and beverages service, and also maintaning our installations and rooms as clean as possible, with more importance now than ever due the Covid-19 situation of course.

Regarding to the delay with your room at the moment you checked in, I would like to offer you our apologies again, and looking forward to make it up, I would like to mention that we proceed immediately to offer you a late check out instead of the 35mins mentioned, as a fair solution. And about the music we do have our playlists with different music options set up by the brand as well, and also the same for the drinks recipes.

On the other hand, about the coffee service it is with the purpose to provide our guests with the benefit to drink their coffee by the pool without having to go to the main restaurant for it, and people love it, so this would be pretty much the first complaint about it. Lastly, about the pool let you know that each person is free to wear their swimsuits and their water t-shirts, and also I would like to add that in the rooms we do have comfortable and quality pillows and beds.

All our guests' comments are always welcome, nevertheless the experience you described is not characteristic of the level of service our associates strive to provide. And finally on behalf of the management I would like to inform you that we will study your observations mentioned looking forward for opportunities to improve our services.

Kind regards from the sunny Playa Flamingo Beach!

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Reviewed January 2, 2021 via mobile

I visited the hotel in June 2020, when the restrictions due to covid were a bit loosened after a closure in commercial activities. I think that at that point in time the hotel was not ready to open again since the experience was not pleaseant. I had visited the hotel before (not in covid times) - and the experience was nothing but excellent, but this time it was totally different.
I took some time to make the review and hopefully the hotel has adjusted its policies and procedures, as I remembered that I wasn't the only one with issues.

One of the issues we had was with the "all inclusive" experience. We arrived and the menu was so limited you had few choices of food and drink daily. No snacks, no pool bar, restaurants closed. The main issue we had was the first night after our arrival, we were going for dinner at night just to find out that not even the limited menu was available but literally only pasta and it was to-go a eat in your room - the hotel blamed the restrictions yet we were not informed at all that dinner was not going to be available after 7pm and some of us do not eat pasta - we nearly had to go to bed without eating if it wasn't because we escalated the issue as we were initially told "take it or leave it" - which was extremely rude.

This, summed up to the fact of poor customer service from other staff members, one room with issues, lack of empathy was enough to leave the hotel before our original checkout date. We went with a couple of friends that we recommended the hotel as one of the best (from our previous visit), just to find out that we made them go through a really bad experience. After checking out we went to Riu (an hotel that I personally think is "lower" class than Margarita) but in there we were able to find an acceptable service - they were following the health measurements without turning it a pain for customers or an excuse for a poor service.

Honestly the visit was a unforgettable for the wrong reasons and I do not add a lower review if it wasn't because Raquel Salas, the customer service manager, was the only one who acknowledge the issues, apologized, showed real concern, provided us more personalized service and helped us check-out before the original date.

I truly hope the hotel has made the necessary adjustments because it is beautiful, the view is amazing and last time the food and drinks were from the highest quality, the customer service was fantastic, and the hotel even though small had all that was necessary to spend a good time. Since the two visits were day and night I think I will visit it again and give them a "second chance" - hoping the issues were only a fall through the cracks.

Date of stay: June 2020
Trip type: Travelled with friends
Thank ronnyu156
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Carlos Rodriguez, Owner at Margaritaville Beach Resort Playa Flamingo, responded to this reviewResponded January 3, 2021

Dear Ronny

Indeed you are right that the pandemic did affect the operations of the hotel 6 months ago when you were here. We needed to follow the restrictions and regulations established by the government and we needed to balance the safety of our guests and of our staff with the need to provide the best experience possible based on the circumstances. While the majority of other hotels in the region elected to remain closed down to save money and avoid the potential issues, we elected to stay open at that time despite losing more money for doing so, in order to provide a service that was needed in the area. Unfortunately being a smaller hotel and having limited staff curtailed the offerings to clients but we tried to advertise the situation and notify everyone before they checked in. It seems you didn’t get the notice and for that I apologize. Also, frankly speaking, some team members and management let us down at that time. They didn’t respond to the situation as we expected and as a result we’ve made several changes in the executive team and staff since then, and I am proud to say that they have the hotel back to the standards you are used to. Obviously things won’t be totally back to normal until this pandemic is under control but we’ve improved tremendously since you stayed with us. The hotel is back and getting great feedback from customers. I just stayed here and had a great time with my family, and a terrific and safely executed New Year’s Eve party. I invite you to come back and visit us; I am sure you will be satisfied.

Carlos J. Rodriguez
Chairman & CEO
Margaritaville Beach Resort

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Reviewed December 28, 2020 via mobile

This is more like a 2 1/2-3 star. You have one place for breakfast (terrible), only two places for lunch and dinner (just ok) you have no drinks in your room (water, cokes). You’re only allowed three meals a day (all inclusive means eat anytime all the time if you want) and you’re charged extra for certain foods.
All stairs no elevators, one pool, the beach is across the street and basically overran with locals, no beach chairs. You have to make a reservation for the gym, I guess only one person allowed at a time.
When you order food be prepared to wait at least 30 minutes for mediocre food.
The chef was also the manager on duty the night we got here and had to come up and fix the air in our room.
No water pressure at all and this morning no water at all for a little while.
Not one box of Kleenex in your room. Hair dryer doesn’t work.
The workers were very nice which is the only reason I give it 2 1/2-3 stars and the rooms were decent.
If you’ve ever stayed at a 4-5 star resort then you know this isn’t one of them.
Very cheap, and we still have to be here until Friday, hope I can make it.
We usually stay at a RIU or Westin, if you’re gonna do an all-inclusive and you want an actual 4-5 star place, spend a few extra dollars, if you don’t mind cheap and 2-3 stars come here.
And they will answer this review with, sorry you had problems come stay with us again, like they answer all their bad reviews.
We will never stay at any Margaritaville resort anywhere again.

Date of stay: December 2020
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank stevenswilliamjr10
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Carlos Rodriguez, Owner at Margaritaville Beach Resort Playa Flamingo, responded to this reviewResponded January 1, 2021

Dear Mr Williams,

I am truly sorry you feel that way. We always strive to meet and exceed all of our guest expectations but every now and then we fail. Indeed our 120 room resort is a smaller hotel that is very different from the 326 room Westin and the 538 room RIU hotel that you mentioned. We certainly have less restaurants than the other two hotels since they need to service a lot more people due to the size of their properties. While the lines to get food are longer at the other hotels, and guests tend to be more of a number they do have more restaurants. We compensate for that that by striving to give a more personalized service and intimate touch where we learn people’s favorite drinks, etc. I understand that your group being a group of 5 persons staying in one single room may be hectic and may affect your overall experience and that you may want a larger resort where you are just a number versus a more intimate relaxed experience like the one we give. So unfortunately we can’t meet that expectation. We are just a different type of property from what you describe and are looking for. In the case of the Westin you don’t hear or see the ocean and you need to either take a long walk to the beach and the pool or you need to wait for a golf cart to pick you up and take you. In the case of the RIU you also have a long walk to the beach, you don’t hear the ocean, and the beach is not as pretty. Our hotel is right on the beach where you hear from your room the waves break and some people prefer that. The bad side is that all beaches are public in Costa Rica so during New Year’s and during Easter week all beaches are full of locals and that is something that will be the same in any beach you go in the country. So that affects all the hotels including the others that you mention but that affects us a little more since we are right on the beach. The rest of the year this is not much of a problem and the beach is practically empty at all times. As per the comment of the gym and some of the other issues you mentioned please understand that we are in a pandemic and we need to follow the regulations given to us by the government and we need to insure people’s safety first and foremost, so for example the comment of having to make a reservation for the gym is only because of the pandemic. Once the pandemic is over we will go back to normal operations where you can use the gym at any time.

So in all honesty your assessment of this being a 2 star hotel or a motel 6 hotel is quite harsh. I would just say we didn’t meet you expectations since you were looking for a different type of hotel. I say this as owner of the hotel for the last 30 years. I own Westins, Hiltons, Marriotts and several lifestyle hotels, and I typically review, but don’t personally respond, to comments made by clients. I leave that for our GMs and other team members to do, but in this case I decided to write because I truly believe this hotel deserves a better report card. This is my family’s favorite hotel where we come to spend quality time as a family, so I know the good points and bad points since I’ve experienced them as a guest. You did make some good comments that we will incorporate and work on for future guests but to say it’s a Motel 6 or a 2 or 3 star is not truly accurate. It really depends on what you want as a client. If you want to depart early we will gladly issue a refund for the nights you didn’t consume. I hope you and your family enjoyed the synchronized swimming show, the live music, and the live fire works during your stay. I wish you find the resort of your taste and liking and I am sorry we didn’t meet your expectations. Safe travels.

Carlos J. Rodriguez
Chairman & CEO
Margaritaville Beach Resort


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