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Reviewed 16 March 2012

We loved our stay on the beach. Everything there makes you happy in your villa. It was very pretty, if a little time worn. There were fresh flowers, plenty of space ...and we never saw a bug or lizard inside! The staff overall is a bit spotty, but then we speak very limited Spanish and the help speaks very little English. It's really not a problem. The food was often exceptional; and always good. The pool and the little swim up bar was just the right touch. Nighttime entertainment, bonfire on the beach, marimba, music, etc.: lovely! The only glitch we encountered was on the Monkey tour; it was extraordinarily crowded and somewhat frightening when 9 or so people crowded the very small, high above the canyon zip line platforms at one time. I recommend taking about $100 in dollar bills for tips and for shopping in Samara. Oh, and the surfing school there was reasonable and good. We were there on the full moon, the tides were amazing and the stars unimaginably immense! We will go back again, we will encourage friends and family as well.

Room Tip: Although we were told that there were prettier, smaller villas; we loved the 3 bedroom on the beach!!
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with friends
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3  Thank 000Susan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 March 2012

Buffet food not good. They do have a menu to order from for those that have the all inclusive with the resort. You have to ask they will not offer. Suggest you walk along the beach for about 20 to 25 mins into town (Samara) for lunch or dinner. The trip the Caverns was not what was advertised. They promised water, lunch and enlish speaking guide. We received none of this BUT once brought to their attention, they did refund us Plus gave the 6 of us in our group complimentary massages. They gave no instructions for Kayaking. After our day had passed, a staff member then let us know he would have taken us out? We did not get to zipline because they did not have enough guests for the trip and they will not suggest another company. We learned SkyNet Tours is in Samara, they have several packages. The hotel does not post a list of prices for Drinks, Food, Activies etc. Ride to the hotel was 125.00US and is about one and half hours. There is still a little bit of construction going on for beautification. Our upstair hotel room(no kitchen unit) was clean and free of bugs and all new applicances. Our friends we met while there, had a down stairs unit. They had ants and lizards entering from under the door. They have beautiful grounds, pool and the Best spot on the beach. Using US dollars is fine. I would suggest bringing small bills so you do not have to deal with the Colones (Costa Rican dollar) so much. Nice hotel when I return during the rainy season, I will try another hotel. Their staff is not service oriented.

Room Tip: Depends on your liking. On the beach could be busy and not very private. Our upstair room was clean quite and a close walk to the pool or the beach. There are NO PHONES in any of the rooms to contact the front desk if you need something.
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank Beverley M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 March 2012

I stayed at Villas Playa Samara Feb 20-27, 2012. I was on an Air Canada Vacations package, which rates the resort as 3.5 stars, so I went into it with that sort of expectation - it would be good, but perhaps not great. My expectations were exceeded in nearly every way at Villas Playa Samara!

The location is second-to-none. If you want a quiet, secluded, beautiful beach vacation, this is your place! When you are on the beach in front of the resort, all you see is trees, beach, and water..no other resorts...it's so peaceful and beautiful! Amazing sunsets!!!!! It is about 2hrs from Liberia airport, though, and the drive out can start to feel like you're in the middle of nowhere, but once at the resort, I quickly felt like I was part of a resort community, in a very safe place. Travelling alone, that was extremely important to me!

I really liked the mix of guests I found here - families, couples, and friends travelling together - and their easy going, "I just want to relax and enjoy my vacation" vibe. It's not a party resort, at all. Mainly North Americans for the first half of my week-long stay, and then a whack of French tourists came in. The only negative part about that is that the amazing a la carte menu disappeared for all meals when the big group came in, replaced by a buffet service..a decent buffet, but I definitely preferred the a la carte menu.

I had an oceanview villa that was very spacious, with a nice veranda with hammock, full kitchen, etc. Bathrooms have shower only. The villa decor is a bit dated (updates are ongoing, as I understand it), but for the amount of time I spent awake in my villa, I didn't find it a big deal at all!! Bed was extremely comfortable! It's a very compact resort, taking no more than a minute or 2 to get anywhere. I use a wheelchair, and I must say this is a very wheelchair-accessible resort, with ramps where needed, and - a highlight for me - a beach hard-packed enough (after about 10ft of softer sand) to wheel straight into the ocean!!!

The resort had everything I needed to just stay on resort for the whole time (including a pool-bar ;-) ...and a well-stocked mini-market with familiar candies and toiletries, everything you might possibly need, but have forgotten at home!). HOWEVER, one of the main highlights for me was learning that the resort had its own tour company and vans, and runs tours for resort guests only! Alex (activities and tour guide extraordinaire) and Catherine (tour company manager extraordinaire ..and the resort owner's daughter) were very helpful in explaining what the tours were, and I found myself feeling very safe venturing off the resort in their capable hands. As it turns out, the tour experience at Villas Playa Samara felt more like a "field trip among friends", particularly after my 1st excursion, rather than the normal experience of being picked up at your resort, picking up other strangers from other resorts, and going on a tour guided by another stranger, all of whom you will never see again! It was nice to all get back to the resort and have dinner together, etc. It made for a much more complete, authentic vacation experience,

The folks at Villas Playa Samara are really creating a very unique resort and vacation experience, and I cannot recommend staying there highly enough!!

Room Tip: Oceanview villas have stunning views!!!!
  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled solo
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3  Thank Waterwings74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 February 2012

For approximately 18 years, my husband, my daughter and I have spent our vacations in Villas Playa Samara, a unique place we call ‘‘our little paradise’’ by the Pacific. As many people return there year after year, we have got to know some friends. We have just spent one month and a half in this all-inclusive resort, and I can ensure you that the food is amazing and the staff courteous and devoted. On the site itself, there are an air conditioned gym, a convenience store, and a room where we could watch TV and play pool. In the surroundings, we can see monkeys, lizards, parrots, etc. Besides, we can walk on the beach to Samara (25 min.) a village where we can contemplate the beaches, the little cafés, the surfers and much more.
The beach is not only beautiful but also safe, as it is protected by a barrier reef. Besides, by the Pacific, the sunsets are just breathtaking.We have noticed that almost every villa has been revamped. Villas Playa Samara now has two buses, with which we can tour the region or just commute from the airport to the villas. Thank you Villas Playa Samara for all these years and all these precious memories!

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled as a couple
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9  Thank csimard123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 February 2012

I'm now to my sixth trip out there and I swear it' not the last. This place is simply wonderful and it's situated in this picturesque location which needs to be visited. Very good service with smiling employees, I always feel home when I come to this place. These little villas are truly welcoming and you feel totally in peace with all your ''neighbors'' surrounding . It's the perfect little community with everybody enjoying their vacations. Even if you don't feel like staying into a villa the hotel just added a little room complex also very interesting. The restaurant's food is excellent even though you have little kitchens if you don't feel like going out to eat in public. And you don't even have to go out of the hotel site to make your grocery, the hotel has a mini-market where you can buy all stuff necessary for your needs. You have the best of two worlds, first the hotel is a very relaxing place and if you are adventurous, tons of activities that will bring you in places around you would not believe they exist. This place needs to be discovered and I really recommend this hotel if you want to come to Costa Rica and even if you are moving around the country, this stop will absolutely be worth it. Either it's for a honey moon, a family vacation you will not be disappointed believe me.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled with family
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5  Thank FredRu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BradAnderson, Director of Sales at Hotel Villas Playa Samara, responded to this reviewResponded 13 February 2012

Hi Fred,

Thank you for your feedback, we love travelers like you that decide to make Hotel Villas Playa Samara a "home away from home", hope to see you soon back with us. We are constantly changing and upgrading our grounds so don't be surprised if on your next visit you find something new again!

Best regards,

Brad Anderson

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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