We live in Jaco, just south of this property, but we had not been there until today. We stopped in for lunch, hoping for a great view. Good food would just be the cherry on top. Well, the view is stunning, and the food far exceeded our expectations. The walnut-crusted seabass was delicious. The staff was friendly and attentive, but did not hover. We will definitely be back for sunset happy hour and dinner soon! There were iguanas basking in the sun, toucans calling out, and hummingbirds flitting by. We also spotted some white faced monkeys on our way back down to the highway.
This is an enigmatic hotel in many ways. We stayed in the '20s' suite at the Zephyr Palace for 5 nights, which is a large suite with private balcony and stunning views. The room was spotlessly clean, but like all the Zephyr rooms, is decorated in a unique style that is unlikely to be to everyone's taste. '20s' is mostly dark grey with naked cherubs on the ceilings and various other nude paintings adorning the walls, although this is just part of the odd mix of greco-roman and other styles in which the whole of the Zephyr Palace is built. Leaving the quirky design aside, it is an oasis of tranquillity from which to enjoy the views, wildlife and swimming pools virtually to yourself. However, this is where part of the problems lie. There are no staff or facilities at the Zephyr and you have to rely on the main Hotel Caletas which is some distance away down and back up quite steep hills, so anything you need like a drink or snack by the pool, requires room service. Not only does this add 10% on top of the existing 10% service charge, it is quite an ordeal. Calling the room service number is always met with total surprise (as though it is the first time it has ever happened) and you are inevitably passed on to two or three different people before you can place an order. You then go through the same process for collection (they rightly insist that you call to pick up the trays because of the wildlife), but it usually takes two or three calls before someone appears (if at all). A number of the room service staff also have that irritating habit of awkwardly lingering around waiting for an additional tip which is particularly annoying when you have now already paid 20% service. There is a prompt buggy service to take you to the main area, but this leads to the other main issue. The catering is centred around the restaurant, which has pretensions of fine dining. Whilst the lunch menu has a few lighter items, the dinner menu is very elaborate, limited in choice and sadly in our opinion, very poor quality. The lunch menu is not available in the evenings so there is no opportunity to have just a light meal or supper. Even the room service menu is essentially the dinner menu with just three additions. It is not cheap either, as we paid an average of $140 for two for each meal we had there. There is no sign of the 'Artisan Pizzas' or 'Extensive Vegetarian Menus' that are advertised on the posters up the drive to the hotel, so even with a $40 round trip taxi cost, it is probably worth going into Jaco for some lighter and different meal options. Finally, other advertised services are just not provided. Rooms are equipped with a surround-sound CD/DVD but you need to take your own. The TV is just a vague selection of snowy pictures. The nightly turn-down service is just doesn't happen. We did complain to the management about the room service particularly, and whilst they did their best to help, they are clearly limited by higher management strategy. For a one or two night's stay the wow factors probably mask the drawbacks, but if they want to attract longer stays, they really do need to address the service issues and particularly the catering options.…
We stayed in the palace and it was magical! Very clean and organized. The service was so fast. it's only 20 minutes to Jaco city. I defiantly recommend this place if you are going to that part of the country.
The view from the room and the pool is astonishing and the architecture well integrated with the wonderful nature around it's pristine gardens. The rooms (we stayied and the Egipit) are enormous and very confy, though the decoration may not please all tastes. The staff is extremely nice and helpful. The beach nearby is not that near and not very beautiful, but also "exclusive", and the restaurant could be better for what it charges. All in all, a wonderful experience.
Thinking back to my stay here when visiting Costa Rica still makes me happy. It was the second stay following a business trip at another property that had been disappointing. The Zephyr Palace was anything but! After driving up a bumpy road, you pull up to this amazing mansion/hotel on a hill. It was breathtaking! We had the hotel practically to ourselves the few days we stayed here. Privacy, striking infinity pool and roomy suites made our stay. One negative is there are no little perks like poolside drink or lunch service, but it was not a big issue.Friendly staff, lush grounds and really a unique hotel.