Riu Guanacaste

Riu Guanacaste
3.993.993.993.993.99
3.99 based on 276 reviews
#2 of 12 hotels The Monarc.ca popularity scale (#1/15) classifies all the hotels of a single destination according to the number of grades received on 5 and the total number of reviews. in Liberia
Rated 5 stars
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Excellent resort

, Beeton, ON
2024-02-15
Riu Guanacaste was a 5 star! Excellent service at the bars and restaurants. Food was great everywhere we ate. Our room came with a stocked mini fridge and bar. Nightly entertainment was always great, especially the white party Friday night! We saw monkeys just a walk down the beach in the trees and stingrays close to shore! Temp was 34 every day we were there! We would definitely go back! [Details]
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The strong points
Great entertainment, pool party and nightly musicians. The food was amazing at all restaurants. Beautiful room with a great view!
The weak points
?
Certified

Great vacation and amazing weather!

, Wasaga Beach, ON
2024-02-04
The staff, food, grounds of the hotel and beach were all amazing! What a great vacation with my family (2 adults 2 kids) lots for the kids to do with the waterslides and the pools are huge! [Details]
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The strong points
Staff, food, grounds and pool
The weak points
Food is somewhat the same everyday but they have a huge variety so if you aren't a picky eater you will fins something!
Certified

Beautiful Resort!

, Clinton, ON
2024-01-29
My husband and I stayed at Riu Guanacaste to celebrate our 25th anniversary and had an incredible time! Staff here work incredibly hard to make your experience fantastic from the ones who help you at the front desk, to those who clean your room and serve you at the bars and restaurants. They were always happy to help and had a smile on their face. The buffets were some of the best I've experienced in my travels South with no lack of variety! Food was plentiful and presented well and changed daily. The A La Carte restaurants were pretty good, but honestly I preferred the buffet. The lasagna at the Italian restaurant was so good though, that I had to have it twice! The location of the resort, although far from the sights we wanted to see (volcano, rainforest etc) was still beautiful and wonderful. We got to see Monkeys just up the beach and that was a real highlight! The evening shows were good, although we usually went to bed early because we were exhausted. Lots of walking here, but we don't mind that at all. Our room was the furthest from the beach you could get, but as active people we were totally fine with that. The grounds are kept pristine and the gardeners work hard all day to keep it that way. We had no big complaints at all with our stay and would wholeheartedly recommend this resort to our friends and would definitely stay here again. [Details]
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The strong points
Beautiful grounds, wonderful staff, lovely beach and a huge variety of food options.
The weak points
Our only real complaint were the keys to open our room, it always took a while and a bunch of wiggling to get our door open. A key card would be a lot nicer, but this was not a huge deal.
Certified

2nd time and still wonderful!

, Edmonton, AB
2024-01-29
I visited this resort on a girls trip first time in Jan. 2020...and we loved it! Being a little skeptical as some reviews stated that things changed after all the shutdowns!
Are the beds hard, yup...but I need a firm mattress, so I loved them and slept like a baby! Do they have keys for the doors? Yup, but what is the difference than carrying a card? Lol! Theres TONNES of food to choose from, never starved, and I'm a pretty picky eater!. I dont care if you cant make reservations, I dont make them at home either. You take your chance. I'm a smoker, and I loved the not smoking everywhere. There are convenient places. By the swim up bar, you can go behind the restaurant that backs onto the sanctuary, so you can watch the monkeys! Theres tonnes of iguanas, and yes there are raccoons that come to visit at night in the steak house. There are no walls and it's open!!! Lol! I heard a person talking about food was slum and was comparing it to sandals resort [Details]
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The weak points
Bring a cheap dollarstore bathmat and use the handle to get into the shower!!! They are deep and wierd shape slope. I am 5feet so makes it hard to get in and out!! Lol!
Certified

Poor Customer Service at Riu Guanacaste

, Aurora, ON
2024-01-23
First and last time at a Riu. Weather was amazing, but that was about it. Advertises as a non smoking resort but smoking and vaping is prevalent throughout the grounds. Issues with room when we first got there. Wife came down with food poisoning for a couple of days. Told by tour guide to have bottled water with you at all times, but many times when we asked at front desk there was none. Raffaele at buffet restaurant and Italian a la carte was great but rest of staff didn't really seem to care. Inside buffet restaurant was open for lunch every day first week but only once in second week. Front desk tried to tell me there was rarely an inside buffet lunch. As I said weather was great but resort was not. Customer service is very poor. There are certainly enough other resort choices out there that provide a better experience than this one! [Details]
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The strong points
Weather
The weak points
customer service
Certified

Nice place just needs updating

, Georgetown, ON
2023-12-31
Rooms were clean but are needing some updating. Lots of choices of food but needed seasoning - salt, spices etc. Entertainment was same thing each night just different themes of dancing. Entertainment crew during day didn't try very hard to get people involved and speaker was so old we couldn't understand them. Bricks are very hot to walk on so always wear shoes. They kept place very clean - public areas especially. Close to Monkey Bar - off the beach private restaurant - worth the walk down the beach! [Details]
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The strong points
Clean, grounds are beautiful, pools are big and have lots of room for everyone. Small enough so not too far to get to anything. Staff very friendly. Water park is a short 5 minute walk from hotel lobby. Great for young children and adults
The weak points
Food lacked flavour, same stuff everyday. Rooms need updating. Don't like the fact you can't make reservations for meals. Didn't get rooms close together as requested so kids were on opposite side of hotel from us.
Sanitary measures
Very clean place
Certified

Nice location, clean, in dire need of an upgrade

, Owen Sound, ON
2023-11-16
Great location. Clean for the age. The rooms were clean but outdated. A little underwhelmed for a RIU. I'm pretty easy to please when it comes to all inclusive resorts, but I would say this was the most underwhelming resort I have been to...ever.....and I have been to several places (incl. other RIUs). Our service in the restaurants was not good. I pretty much had to stand on my head every morning to get someone to come by with a coffee. They main buffet staff seemed to be more concerned about getting the tables ready for new people coming in than actually serving the guests that were already there. This resort has a lot of potential if they would just put some money back into it and give it a much needed upgrade. Event staff weren't around much. Nightly shows were...once you've seen one, you've seen them all. Pool bar staff weren't very interactive. Loved Costa Rica and would return..but would stay at a different hotel. [Details]
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The strong points
Great location. Steps to the beach. Nestled in amongst the trees. Monkeys down the beach from the hotel. Buffet by pool was good. Steakhouse was best al la carte and Asian close second. Clean for it's age.
The weak points
Service in main buffet was not good. Had to flag someone down every time we needed something. Asked for something several times and never did receive what we asked for. Italian al la carte was not good. They still use actual keys for the room doors.
Certified

Disappointed

, Kiamika, QC
2023-10-03
The management really not helpful and don't want to help( client lost their car keys ) they said they couldn't do anything)the client went to see an employee and arranged to find them
We just needed 30 minutes more for check out they wanted to charge us 28 $ even though the riu app says 10 $ per person ( the answer from the manager was we decided to charge more due to the fact that they were not fully occupied [Details]
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Would not return

, Innisfil, ON
2023-05-09
Came with my 14 year old daughter for a mommy and me vacation . Our vacation was great. Location was perfect. Service wasn't great. [Details]
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The strong points
Good location.
The weak points
Service wasn't great.No pool service for drinks. Night life started at 9:00. There was nothing to do after dinner until 9pm was hoping for live music or something. Lots of bees around, bars were swarmed sign bees. Not a lot of choice for food.
Certified

The real be ((!))

, Sudbury, ON
2023-03-29
Our experience was being among there soulful community, gracefully inviting to share haven((!)) [Details]
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The strong points
Constant care for the land and the people. They be very well educated from corruption. Safe Community, Blue Zone approach. Definitely pleasurable, when among such kind people! PURA VIDA ((!))
The weak points
There are no weak points. If one had lack of respect for her jungle or her ocean, They may wake you If you fear magnitude or your own sad Karma is blinding your beautiful reality. In this place,experiencing your own truth is presented from haven around U!
Certified

Riu Guanacaste

, Mississauga, ON
2023-02-24
Overall, we were very pleased with the hotel. The staff were helpful and went out of their way with anything we needed.
The area around the hotel was perfect for taking long walks, and the beach
was the same. Hotel is older, but clean. Bathrooms do need an update.
The water had pebbles, and the water was a little rough, but the hotel had three pools, which is where most of the people spent their day. [Details]
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The strong points
Staff were excellent. Pools and landscaping was kept clean. Good variety of food.
The weak points
The hotel policy doesn't allow any privately booked tours to pick up clients at the front door. Need to walk 10 min.to security gate. Outdoor Steakhouse restaurant has a challenge keeping the raccoons from coming into the restaurant during dinner.
Certified

Great time

, Sault Ste Marie, ON
2022-09-01
The resort was beautiful, the staff were amazingly helpful and the food and drinks were great. [Details]
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Certified

Just what the doctor ordered.

, Mississauga, ON
2022-07-23
Overall our experience at this hotel was great. It was around a 45 mins bus ride from the airport. The rooms are a bit dated but kept clean. The staff are hardworking and always trying their best to please you. The beach was ok but half the time the waters were too rough to go into. The pools were great and so was the waterslide park that was open every other day.
We mainly dined at the main restaurant which seemed to have enough variety and the food was being replaced quite often. There are shops on the hotel premises, in case you forget to bring any essentials but be prepared to pay quite a bit for anything you need. [Details]
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Certified

Honeymoon

, Stevensville, ON
2022-06-29
Very nice hotel with fantastic view and lots to do! [Details]
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The strong points
Good variety of food Good customer service Clean Beautiful landscaped grounds
The weak points
The 5th floor concrete wall that blocks the view
Certified

Vacation

, Oakville, ON
2022-05-05
Pool was very dirty, asked to speak to manager, but he was missing in action.
Staff were awesome so kind and helpful.
Rooms were clean, beds were good.
Only 2 a la carte restaurants were open per day, so unless you wanted to dine a 6pm you can never get a table.
Hotel was very busy at the weekend and on Sunday lunchtime they ran out of food, remember there is only one buffet open. [Details]
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The strong points
Staff were wonderful , grounds were beautiful
The weak points
Dirty pool, lack of a la carte space, lack of fish on the menu
Certified

Riu Guanacaste stay

, Burlington, ON
2022-03-28
Great experience, super clean, well maintained, there were different restaurants to choose from or the main buffet. The beach was nice. Night events were well done. Overall a great experience. [Details]
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The strong points
Amenities well kept. Nice pool area. Food was good. Room with ocean view was nice.
The weak points
Drinks lacked a little.
Sanitary measures
Everywhere indoors masks were mandatory
Certified

Great staff

, Corunna, ON
2022-02-03
I had a fabulous experience with my stay here all the staff were friendly and very easy to communicate with considering my Spanish is almost nil. [Details]
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The strong points
Food was fabulous and service was attentive. It was very clean I would recommend this hotel.
The weak points
The decor was a little aged but was fine with me I didn't go for the decor. Also the disco was closed that was a big bummer.
Sanitary measures
Very clean and sanitary protocol was followed
Certified

Enjoyed every minute!

, Toronto, ON
2022-01-13
I have no real complaints about this resort. The beach was not my favorite, however, It was great to walk along. The resort itself, easy access to everything, the food was plenty and absolutely great! Clean hotel and really great staff (always friendly, and very respectful). The rooms were nice and comfortable. Take the time to talk to the staff and you will learn plenty about Costa Rica. Pura Vita!!! [Details]
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The strong points
Clean rooms and grounds, great food, great staff, easy access to everything.
The weak points
Beach was smelly but not much you can do with fishing boats around.
Sanitary measures
PCR tests available on site. Staff always wearing masks, cleaning of washrooms were constant.
Certified

Riu Guanacaste Review

, Bright Sand, SK
2020-02-18
Spent two weeks at the all inclusive hotel in Feb 2020. [Details]
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The strong points
Excellent staff-- all very accommodating and friendly.
The weak points
The pool area requires better attention. The lounge chairs were never cleaned- had lots of bird dropping on them. The pool had a lot of floating debris.
Certified

Costa Rica winter getaway

, Maple, ON
2020-01-16
The hotel is "tired"....needs updating. A lot of the floor tiles through-out the main areas are cracked. One of the elevators was not always working. The housekeeping was lacking in that fresh towels were not provided/replaced when the room was cleaned (5 out of 7 days). Also, had to ask for toilet tissue and Kleenex. The buffet dining room food selection was boring and never varied (breakfast were ok - but lunch and dinners were not good). Overall this hotel does NOT deserve to have a 4 star rating. Reception and wait staff were pleasant and helpful. [Details]
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The strong points
Good pool and beach. Friendly staff.
The weak points
Food - buffet boring and no varied selection from day to day, Very little fish/seafood. Housekeeping did not replace used towels with fresh towels ie did not replace used towels until requested. Also toilet tissue and kleeex was not replaced.
Certified

Worst vacation Ever

, Brampton, ON
2019-09-26
The staff, waiters were not very nice, when you go for the buffet, they make you get your own drink and refill yourself, there is no all-inclusive. Did not like the food at all, didn't have a lot of variety. The beach and pools were good. The cleaning staff was good. But my experience there with the room, my first night there, I had to switch 3 different rooms, until I got a room that everything was working and clean. Not many of the staff spoke English so it was difficult to communicate with them. I would never go back to that location again, this was my first Riu and my last. I would never recommend this resort. [Details]
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Great place to visit

, Toronto, ON
2019-06-19
Our first trip to Costa Rico and it was fantastic.
We have traveled to most of the Caribbean and have to say this is one of the best places we have travelled to.
The Riu Guanacaste was spectacular, it's big but even though it was sold out and full, we never waited for anything. No line ups, no fighting for sun loungers,or waiting more than a minute for a drink.
The place was spotless and the staff could not do enough for us. Only negatives in the whole week , were they need air or fans in the elevators and a group of ignorant tourists who insisted on vaping in the pool.
We found the security was exceptional and the non smoking was very refreshing.
We were a group of 6 and there was something for each of us, the shows were very professional, the attractions were close and reasonable inexpensive and the wildlife were plentiful.
Will certainly be looking here again ,when our next vacation is due. [Details]
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The strong points
Clean safe environment.eco friendly, for the most part non smoking. No line ups for anything. Staff were very helpfully and friendly No kids at the bar. One of the best places we have ever visited.
The weak points
Not much. Ignorant tourists who insisted on vaping or smoking in the pool. Need a fan or air in the elevators.
Certified

RIU GUANACASTE

, Brampton, ON
2019-06-01
I was not pleased with my experience. This was a 5 star hotel, that felt like a 3 star.

The first night that I was there, the key didnt work and I was locked out of my room. I had no access to my medication until the next day which made me really sick.

I spend the whole day on Wednesday May 22nd in the hospital. Good thing I got travelers insurance, or it would have costed me almost $600 Canadian.

There was not much selection in the food for people who only eat chicken and vegetables.

There was no kettle in the room to make tea whenever it was needed.

The 24 hour snack bar had stale sandwiches that were gone by 12am and the only snack apart from that was Nachos that didnt last long either.

There was only one bartender and it was very busy most of the time. Sometimes you would wait almost 10min for one drink.

I've been to 3.5/4 stars that make burgers, fries and pizzas all night.

The A/C in my room barely worked, it kept chipping in and out.

The location of the RIU is no where near the local towns, so there's not much to see if you want to walk.

For this to be a 5 star vacation at the RIU, I was very disappointed! [Details]
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The strong points
Staff Amazing
The weak points
False Advertisement
Certified

Start to finish an excellent experience

, Dollard Des Ormeaux, QC
2019-04-18
We enjoyed a rest in this beautiful setting where "the inhabitants" of the jungle came out to meet us.The hotel was "fully booked" but we didn't feel
over run by people. A very spacious pool system and beach. [Details]
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The strong points
The hotel and staff were excellent. Clean, user friendly and polite. The dining rooms were well staffed and service was superb. Service on the beach and pools was outstanding.
The weak points
The main dining room was our go to because of the method used to reserve for the "special dining rooms". We were not disappointed by the staff nor the selection on the menu.
Certified

Unconfortable resort

, North York, ON
2019-03-18
not impressed with comfort in the resort transportation very expensive the small town near resort for shopping is no good overall food is ok the beach is nice and the staff at beach are helpful to bring beach furniture anywhere in the resort the waiter or waitress will serve you drinks. very hot and humid temperature hovering around 35 c to 37 c with no ac around in some of the hotel areas went to casino and see staff playing on the slot machines [Details]
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The strong points
good staff clean rooms plenty of tropical fruits good alcoholic drinks good sports bar and good snacks
The weak points
lobby,beach restaurant no ac big line at a la carte restaurant main dinning room ac not that great ingredients at main buffet dishes not labeled correctly hard to to get in the tub and the shower gel in the tub makes tub slippery hard for seniors

Amazing trip

, North Bay, ON
2019-02-18
Staff are friendly and helpful.We have been served with the utmost respect and staff always willing to assist. The peddlers on the beach are well behaved and not too pushy to sell their wears. We have travelled to many southern destinations and are knowledgeable and expect that peddlers could become annoying. The food was plentiful and great choices.Very clean establishment. Good value for money. [Details]
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The strong points
Amazing staff and clean. Tips are not expected however appreciated.
Certified

Rip Guanacaste

, Kitchener, ON
2019-02-10
We felt that the restaurant staff were incredibly friendly and worked very hard. The front desk staff not so much. It took over an hour to get our room switched from two single beds to a king sized bed, and the switch had to happen the following day. The music was too loud. The evening entertainment could be at half the volume level and it would allow others to be able to carry on a conversation without having to shout at each other, or for some to actually get some sleep. [Details]
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The strong points
Food was fairly good. Large pool area. Grand buildings. Well manicured gardens.
The weak points
Poor bedding. Pathetic excuses for pillows. Mediocre air conditioning. Small rooms. No sunsets because the beach faces north and the sun sets behind some hills to the left. Not a great beach - steep and rocky. Late night music too loud.
Certified

You can do better

, Kitchener, ON
2019-02-09
- Grand buildings, manicured gardens, large pool area
- Poor beach – steep, stony
- No sunsets because the beach faces north and the sun sets behind some hills to the left
- Rooms are very small, with poor bedding. The pillows are the worst I've experienced in over 25 years of almost weekly travels. The A/C could barely keep up
- The staff are very friendly, but the front desk has not yet learned customer service. (Or, rather, they told us that they were rule-bound and not empowered to make decisions in favour of customers.) Trying to get a king-sized bed rather than two side-by-side single beds was a major battle. And, they would not allow my local Costa Rican business partner to enter the property for even a one hour business meeting in the lobby; we had to go off-site.
Unfortunately, we will not go back.

By the way, we also stayed at Margaritaville Resort at Playa Flamingo. It is much smaller with fewer on-site food options, but it has a better beach, better proximity to local restaurants, better proximity to surfing, rooms that were 3x the size, and simply more human. We'd go back there. [Details]
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The strong points
If you are into over-eating, over-drinking, and laying by a pool all day, this is your place!
The weak points
If you like good wine, a good beach, a nice room, access to local restaurants, and flexibility for customers, go elsewhere.

Great vacation for family with baby

, Toronto, ON
2019-02-06
My husband, 10 month old daughter and I just returned from a 7 day vacation at the Riu Guanacaste. While off to a rocky start (due to bad weather in Toronto), we finally made it to paradise at 2am! Costa Rica was a great choice for our first vacation. It felt very safe, even leaving the resort for an excursion. Our research told us people love babies in Costa Rica, which was proven true at this resort. Staff made a big deal over my daughter which she thoroughly enjoyed and made us feel at ease. Overall, our experience was quite wonderful!! [Details]
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The strong points
Hotel grounds were beautiful, friendly staff, spacious pool area with lots of shaded areas, lots of selection at pool area, skilled photographers
The weak points
Hotel room outdated and while clean, not the cleanest, the bad smell in the bathroom the whole time (sewage?), too many buffets (would prefer more individual places with better quality food- I.e burger place), also you can't reserve a la carte restaurants
Certified

Pura Vida!!

, Arva, ON
2019-02-05
The RIU family has a beautiful member to it's family of resorts...this being our second location of choice, again we were not disappointed! The grounds are immaculate and lush, the facilities are spotless and any request we asked for was quickly and happily executed. The food was very good with an extensive selection. It's a family friendly destination and there is a cute RIUland pool and play area strictly for the wee ones. My husband came down with a 24 hr bug and the staff prepared him a glass of tonic water, salt and lemon juice to help balance his electrolytes to speed his recovery, which it did!
It was a relaxing and enjoyable week away to celebrate his 70th birthday...ya gotta go!! [Details]
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The strong points
Sincereity, Friendliness, courtesy, cleanliness, location
The weak points
Small pillows for the beds...king size beds need larger, softer pillows.
Certified
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