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Manatus Hotel
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Reviews (535)
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All reviewsoutdoor showersmall hotelthe air conditioningcosta ricathe riverguide luisnational parkhowler monkeyssan joserestaurant staffboat captainspotting wildliferooms are largean excellent guideturtle layinga wonderful stayboth ways
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Reviewed April 13, 2012

This was a luxurious lodge. The rooms and hotel were beautifully decorated and immaculate. The bar area was nice as was the restaurant. Food was very good as were the cocktails. The owner was “hands on” and very personable. The pool area had a great view and the gardens were beautiful. We saw lots of wildlife both at the lodge and on tours. Staff could not have been more friendly and helpful.

As mentioned by a previous reviewer we found the whole tipping business in Costa Rica to be a minefield. In this lodge, as in several others, the guest notes state that gratuities are not included in the package but a box is available to leave gratuities for hotel staff, but this does not include guides and restaurant staff or boat captains. This means if you want to make sure everyone gets a tip then you end up spending as fortune! We also felt that in some top end hotels including this one (but more so in some others) that staff were expecting to be tipped and this reflected their style of service, and as Brits we found this at times embarrassing. We were told before we went to Costa Rica that tips were not normal as service is added at 10% to all food bills etc by law. Very confusing.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank prettyfishes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed April 9, 2012

Likes:
- Air conditioning. As far as I know, this is the only hotel in the area that offers it and it works well. 
- The group size. There was only one other couple with us, so we got to know them well. We even stayed at the same hotel in Arenal by coincidence. 
- The tours. Well organized and we saw plenty of animals. 
- The coordination. Everything was well organized and ran on time.
- This bus ride to and from the port was nice and air conditioned and we had plenty room to spread out. Melissa, our guide on the bus on the way to the port was excellent. 
- The massages. We did the honeymoon package and it was an outstanding value. We didn't do the included canopy tour (we forgot and they never mentioned it), but the hour-long massages, which came out to $20 a piece, were wonderful. Jessica and Esmeralda (sp?) were great masseuses and it was a great treat after touring by boat all day. 
- The Internet. Strong, fast wi-fi in our room. 
- The T.V. had a good selection of channels in English. 

Dislikes:
- The lack of drinks. When you're in the middle of no where and you have an all inclusive package, you expect at least water and soda to be included right? Not here! We had to pay for every single bottle of water and for every soda. We didn't buy enough during our only trip into town, so we were left paying $2+ per bottle. And with the heat, you want to drink quite a few. 
- Rey, our guide, overcharged us by about $6 for the park entry fee since we chose to pay in colones instead of USD. 
- The food. Besides breakfast, when I got cereal, every meal was incredibly heavy and greasy. I tired of the options very quickly, as they were very unusual. I would have preferred more local cuisine and, surprisingly, fewer courses. Once you're done eating, there isn't much to do to burn off what you've eaten, so we felt incredibly lethargic the entire time we were there. 
- Not much to do. You're pretty much stuck in a relatively small area and the tours only take up a few hours a day. The pool was small and unexciting. The forest trail near the hotel  was pretty short and mosquito-y. We tried to play with the pool table but it was so warped that all the balls rolled to one side. So pretty much we just took naps and watched T.V. in our free time. 
- The rooms were dark, but you had to keep the curtains closed for privacy and to keep the room cool. 
- The lack of king sized bed, but I realize others may like the idea of having two queens. 
- No air conditioning, or windows (just a screen), in the bathroom. Bugs got in the shower and it was uncomfortable to get ready when it was hot. It was small, so it felt really stuffy. 
- The fact that toilet paper cannot be flushed down the toilet. I realize that every place in Tortuguero is like this, but I would have appreciated a heads up from the hotel in order to mentally prepare ahead of time. And he lack of air conditioning in the bathroom doesn't help with this. 

Overall, this is probably the only place I could have stayed at in Tortuguero, but for the price, I felt a bit ripped off. 

  • Stayed: February 2012
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5  Thank DrewP988
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HotelManatus, Director General at Manatus Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded August 1, 2012

Hi, thank you for the review of our hotel, we take care about each and every review in order to improve our service, and provide an unforgettable experience in Tortuguero.
We are sorry about the misunderstanding regarding the services provided by our hotel. Manatus does offer a service where meals are included, but is not an all inclusive hotel; therefore, bar drinks such as sodas, natural and alcoholic beverages are not included in our rates. We are going to work in our communication to make it clear to our guests and avoid any misunderstandings regarding this matter.
In general our rates include:
• All meals in our Gourmet Restaurant
• Ground Transfer: San José - (Pavona / Caño Blanco) - San José
• Boat transfer: (Pavona / Caño Blanco) - Tortuguero - (Pavona / Caño Blanco)
• Breakfast on route and lunch on route
• Luxury rooms and accommodations
• Tour to the town and water channels (entrance not included)
If you ever return to Tortuguero, we would be glad to receive you again; we will make special efforts to guarantee you have a pleasant experience in Manatus Hotel.
Again, thank you for your reviews, in Manatus Hotel we want to provide a positive and unforgettable experience to our travelers, and that starts by listening to our clients.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed April 2, 2012

We stayed an extra day and found more to do than they mentioned (canopy tour, walk the beach to Tortuguero village, fishing). Once we understood how to see monkeys and iguanas in the trees, we were finding them more and more. Loved the howlers.
The only negative is I felt like I was tipping everyone (ie tour driver, guide, boat driver, guide, etc) even thou it was all inclusive. We really enjoyed the 3 course lunch and dinners but I needed more activities to burn off the calories. This is a very relaxed place.
Personally, I felt the bus ride and boat ride was long following my flight to Costa Rica. It might have been worth the extra $ to fly one direction to Tortuguero on Nature air.
Fortunately, the only mosquitos were found on the nature trail behind the hotel...not on the canal tours.

Room Tip: photos do not do the beautiful rooms justice...the mosquito nets are for "show" only...very large shower
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank drcam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed April 1, 2012

Lovely room, gardens full of animals before you even start looking for them on the river tours.

Basically, one spends a couple of days trundling along the canals and waterways being amazed by the wildlife, before returning to base to freshen up up with a frozen margarita and a 3 course dinner. In fairness, although the food isn't bad, it isn't as good as they think it is.

But overall, thoroughly recommended.

Room Tip: There are only 12, don't think room number matters.
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Joan_Crawford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 16, 2012

Efficient pick up in San Jose, comfortable aircon mini-bus for transfer, stopping enroute for breakfast and brief trip round banana plantation, informative commentary on the sights as we crossed the volcanic devide and dropped down into Lemon province. Easy transfer to boat for the very pleasant hour long cruise to the remote lodge.
The main lodge and the fourteen rooms are spread along a hundred and fifty yard stretch of the bank of the waterway surrounded by pleasant gardens. The principle roomes in blocks of four are comfortable with efficient air-con, twin double beds, fridge, sky tv and wifi; the adjoining shower room is spacious but space is limited on the vanitory unit (mostly filled by the safe!) and there is no plug or hot water to the basin.
Food and service are excellent: table service with a good, if a little limited, menu at breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Unfortunately the main purpose of visiting, to see the annimals, was completely ruined by the regular and very heavy rainfall. The trips to the National Park were on open boats with no protection offered from the rain, unlike other lodges they did not provide waterproofs so one just got very wet. And while it was raining there was little to see in the way of animals or birds so it was all a bit pointless and unpleasant. When you run out of dry clothes you begin to wonder why you came! And this was the dry season!

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Berdewelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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