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Report: Four Seasons Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica

Report: Four Seasons Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica

Old Dec 16, 14, 7:22 pm
  #1  
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Report: Four Seasons Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica

Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica

Map| 1 Review | 100% Recommended

Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica

Papagayo Peninsula Papagayo, CR

Report: Four Seasons Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica (0 Photo)

Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica

Cliff notes for people who just look at pictures: Loved it!

Pics posted are just from my iphone. I have a lot more from my wife's phone and our digital camera. If you want to see anything just ask. Will upload more pics to thread as I get the time.

Now onto the review.

It was about a 2 hr ride from our first hotel, Rio Perdido (30min from Liberia airport). As soon as you enter the peninsula you know you are going to something special. We met the GM, Pascal, during arrival. Had a brief conversation with him and a more detailed talk a few days later. We had booked with our usual Virtuoso agent and there was nothing mentioned at time of checkin-in if any upgrade was available. No worries. We were just happy to be here. The lovely front desk agent told us to enjoy our suite and we got into a golf cart and were escorted to our room. We just figured that “suite” was just normal vocabulary used for a room. When we arrived to our suite, our jaws dropped. We were upgraded to a Canopy 1BR, 2BA suite with plunge pool. You try to “act like you been here before” but it’s just impossible. 

The walkway leading to the suite is a great preview of what’s to come. Before you turn right to your main door you glance left and see a table for four, two lounge chairs, and the infinity edge plunge pool. You also have a great view of the Bay. You enter into your living room that has sliding pocket doors and an incredible view. The first full bathroom is to your right. Walk straight and arrive to your bedroom. Another set of pocket doors open up to the same incredible view. The waves from the bay, while not that far away, sound like they are just outside your door. The master bath has 2 sinks (separate from each other), a large soaking tub, a large shower, and of course, a toilet. The bathroom is 24.5 feet long (yes, I did the very accurate way of measuring distance with left foot in front of right and so on). At the far end is a vanity that is apparently a must have for all women. On the opposite side of that is your walk in closet. The suite is 1200 sq ft. This is by far the nicest room we have ever had. Gorgeous fixtures, hardwood floors, marble master bath etc etc. Another nice touch is the Bose 2.1 surround sound in the living room and a Bose Bluetooth speaker in the bedroom that we used every day while getting ready and at night while relaxing on the balcony. 

From what we saw we think room 721 was the most private. You can't be seen in the plunge pool by anyone unless your hanging at the very edge. Other suites you can see the balcony when walking by.















View from living room




View from bedroom




First sink


Second sink


Closet


Balcony










Beach/Pools

To our surprise, you can swim in the Bay and in less then 5 minutes walk over and swim in the Pacific Ocean. There are 3 pools: 2 family friendly pools and 1 adult’s only. During our stay we hung out at the family pool closest to the Bay because there were no kids around and the view was great. The adult’s only pool isn’t secluded like it is at FS Maui. If kids are loud at the pool behind you, they will be heard at the adult pool. The service at the pools was pretty spot on. A few times we asked for water and didn’t receive it but no big deal. It’s hard to beat eating and drinking by a pool with amazing views beyond in the distance.

NOTE: The bay side sand gets EXTREMELY hot. 

One family pool where we hung out for most of the time (bay in the background)



Our pool friend



Bay





View from adult pool overlooking the ocean



Hot tub by first pool at night



Beach on oceanside.





Food

We ate at Tico’s, Sol y Sombra, and Cena Sociale. Tico’s was our first stop every night for dinner. Great drinks and live music is a great way to kick off your night. And yes, the live music was really good. Tico’s also has GREAT sushi. Sol y Sombra is their Latin restaurant. We split the ceviche sampler and shredded beef with guac and fried plantains. We very much enjoyed both dishes. At Cena Sociale, their Italian restaurant, my wife ordered the caprese, which was delicious, and their lasagna, which was also very good. I ordered the Mackerel pastrami, which I enjoyed and for entrée I got the homemade tortellini with oxtail stuffing. While I did eat the whole darn thing, I wouldn’t order it again. Just not a must have in my book. 

We also did the “fresh catch of the day” dinner option. Three days a week at 11:30 they bring out fish caught either last night or that morning for you to choose from. You can tell them how you want it prepared and what sides you would like or let the chef decide. So we chose baby Sea Bass and a fish from the Eel family. We told the chef to surprise us with preparation and sides. We chose to eat that on our balcony as our anniversary dinner. They set up the table with a nice white cloth, flower pedals sprinkled on top, and a great layout of the food. For $35USD per person, we feel it was a very good deal. What we did not expect during dinner were our new friends, two Mapacahe’s or as we in the USA know them, racoon’s. Immediately I am thinking rabid NY racoon’s and so is the wife (she was standing on her chair as I sheepishly tried to get them away. I tossed some food below our balcony in hopes of a peace treaty but that didn’t work. They ran down, ate, came back for seconds. Those little bandits are smart. They weren’t aggressive towards us though but they also aren’t shy. They have no problem walking right up to you. We had called to get more ice from the room and the gentleman came in laughing about us NY’ers hiding. Apparently all I had to do was walk towards them and they run away. Noted!

We have read reviews of the prices of wine. For wines by the glass they start at $10 and go to $19. As to be expected at a FS and in Costa Rica, the wines (for the type offered) were a little pricey. But the environment you’re in, I’m willing to pay it. 

Bar outside Sol y Sombra



Bar at Cena Sociale



Sushi



Lots of ceviche



Dinner on the baclony



Our guests



Drinks

My wife and I had our fair share of Cacique at our first resort so we took a break and did some damage on sugary drinks. We did not have a drink that we didn’t enjoy during our whole stay at the property. They have plenty of scotch to choose from but very little choice of Bourbon’s. Our last full day there we did the unlimited mimosa option at breakfast and later on in the day we ordered a pitcher of Pina Colada’s. Yes, a pitcher. Sugar headache quickly took over me so I just took a nap at the pool. A little relaxation, a fresh shower, and we popped a bottle of Champagne and took on the night. 

Activities we did

1. We did a 2 hour kayak tour with Felix (who unfortunately is leaving the FS this week to chase his dream of being a rain forest guide). We made sure to tell Pascal about how nice of a person he was. We talked to him on anything from “what type of tree is this” to how their government is run, healthcare system, etc. You can tell he loves and is very proud of his country. He also couldn’t say enough about the Four Seasons and how much they do for their employee’s and the local community. 

2. We did stand up paddle boarding for the first time. Didn’t fall which was a success for us since I had to paddle past a boat anchored and relaxing with people on board. Note to self: just because you sit down on the board to enjoy the scenery the current doesn’t stop moving. After 5-10 minutes of enjoying the views I look back and was thinking “Sh**! This might be a while to get back”. I wasn’t wrong. 

3. “Trail of the Dragons”. This is a MUST do. If you are not a golfer or you are a golfer, go go go! You tour holes 1-9 and the views are to die for. Made me wish I played* 9. 
*Disclaimer – Played in this sense means “hacking”

4. “Star Gazing”. The FS has a great telescope they take out for the star gazing nights. You check out new and old stars and are able to see how they differ in appearance. We left shortly after but it was still very enjoyable. 

Conclusion

Short and sweet: We would not hesitate to return! 

Special Note

The staff here is pretty great. Two stand-outs were Felix (mentioned earlier) and Guillermo who I believe he is the night time manager. The first time we met this gentleman he somehow already knew who we were. I walked up to ask a question and he initiated the conversation “Mr. DetailsIM, how are you tonight?”. I had a question about the wifi in our room and without looking at his computer, “Yes Sir. Room 721, correct?”. I told Pascal there must be a picture book behind their desk. Simply amazing.

Report: Four Seasons Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica

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DetailsIM is offline  
Old Dec 16, 14, 10:12 pm
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Super. Thanks for posting. Very much looking forward to arriving next week!
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Old Dec 17, 14, 12:38 am
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Thanks! One more destination on my to do list!
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Old Dec 17, 14, 2:07 am
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Thank you for the report. Between this thread and the other most recent one, it seems everyone is incredibly pleased with the updated FS Papagayo.

Though it was a few years ago, I remember enjoying our time there, but do not recall the resort being anything special. Perhaps the newer team - including GM Pascal - along with the updates have made it a better property.

I will say, from the photos the property doesn't seem remarkably different, though I'm happy to read all of the raves. Seems like FS-PP has taken a step up.
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Old Dec 17, 14, 4:04 am
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Thanks for this!

It sounds like you were especially pleased with your Virtuoso upgrade. Was it more than a single room category upgrade? Also, were you on a pkg....nightly room credit or free night? We're trying to get an idea of what is offered this time of year.
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Old Dec 17, 14, 6:54 am
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Originally Posted by Ericka View Post
Thanks for this!

It sounds like you were especially pleased with your Virtuoso upgrade. Was it more than a single room category upgrade? Also, were you on a pkg....nightly room credit or free night? We're trying to get an idea of what is offered this time of year.
It was a multi-room upgrade. We originally booked the basic level room so we were quite shocked. We also had pay 4 nights and stay 5. The week we were there is the "calm before the storm" I think. Starting this coming Saturday they are sold out till after the New Year.

aa213bb

They redid the lobby and the one restaurant. I am not sure what it looked liked previously but it looks very nice now.

NY Banker

I am interested to hear how they handle the busy time. Pascal said it shouldn't be an issue since they have plenty of pool and beach loungers. 100% occupancy I believe is 600 people, approximately 100 of which will go on a daily excursion. Plus the guests that stay in the residences usually stay in them and not filter down to the main resort areas.

We left this past Sunday but we could see the occupancy increase starting Saturday and Sunday morning. Pool was a little busier and there was a family of I believe 5 kids whose parents were no where to be seen. While they were kids just being kids, running around the pool and playing in the hot tub should have been stopped. Or maybe I am just picky because we don't have kids
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Old Dec 17, 14, 7:38 am
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Originally Posted by aa213bb View Post
Though it was a few years ago, I remember enjoying our time there, but do not recall the resort being anything special. Perhaps the newer team - including GM Pascal - along with the updates have made it a better property.

I will say, from the photos the property doesn't seem remarkably different, though I'm happy to read all of the raves. Seems like FS-PP has taken a step up.
I have to agree with this. Granted I was also there a number of years ago. But I found the area almost depressingly ugly in the dry season, the beaches to be underwhelming and the resort itself to be, well, meh (I recall thinking 'apartment complex' while I was there).

If I was in the 'general' area and had to be at a FS, I would elect to stay at Punta Mita, which I found to be superior in pretty much every way.

Having said this, I am also glad the resort seems to be getting a lot of love here and I hope that anyone who goes has a great time.
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Old Dec 17, 14, 7:55 am
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Originally Posted by xracer View Post
I have to agree with this. Granted I was also there a number of years ago. But I found the area almost depressingly ugly in the dry season...
The staff said the green will go away very quickly. That's why we picked this week to go. No rain but close enough to wet season so that every thing is still lush and green.

Nothing the resort can do about the lack of rain
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Old Dec 17, 14, 12:00 pm
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Not sure if it is my problem, but your text runs off the screen on the right...Anyone else seeing this?

Thanks for doing this nice TR.
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Old Dec 17, 14, 12:36 pm
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Originally Posted by farbster View Post
Not sure if it is my problem, but your text runs off the screen on the right...Anyone else seeing this?

Thanks for doing this nice TR.
Yes, mine as well.

Thanks for the trip report. We loved this one as well.
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Old Dec 17, 14, 7:32 pm
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Originally Posted by DetailsIM View Post
Pool was a little busier and there was a family of I believe 5 kids whose parents were no where to be seen. While they were kids just being kids, running around the pool and playing in the hot tub should have been stopped. Or maybe I am just picky because we don't have kids
I will indeed report. Hualalai was a bit overcrowded at Festive a Season. I'm hoping it isn't an issue here.

Was there a reason you didn't visit the "quiet pool?"

http://www.fourseasons.com/costarica...ls/quiet_pool/
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Old Dec 18, 14, 6:50 am
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Originally Posted by NYBanker View Post
I will indeed report. Hualalai was a bit overcrowded at Festive a Season. I'm hoping it isn't an issue here.

Was there a reason you didn't visit the "quiet pool?"

http://www.fourseasons.com/costarica...ls/quiet_pool/
No reason really. We liked the view of the bay from the family pool. We usually hit the pool in the morning and the sun was better on the bay side early in the day.
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Old Dec 18, 14, 6:20 pm
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Here is the link to our full trip report.

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/trip-...l#post24020831
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Old May 11, 15, 9:03 pm
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need advice- FS costa rica trip

Hi everyone- we are planning a one week trip to CR next march with our two sons (age 16 and 13). We will have 7 nights total and looking for what luxury hotel to pair with the FS costa rica and we need advice as to how many nights where. Current plan is as follows:

sat- PHX-San Jose, one night in San Jose due to flight arrival time
sun- transfer to the Springs Arenal- 3 nights
wed- transfer to FS papagayo- 3 nights
fly out of liberia

It seems there are so many activities in Arenal area, so not sure how to split up our nights (not enough time it seems).

Would love everyones advice who has been to CR

Gracias!
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Old May 12, 15, 3:32 am
  #15  
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We will be making a similar trip around Thanksgiving. Flying into SJO and out of LIR. Because we will have a 4 year old with us, we are going to start our trip at the Peace Lodge which is an hour outside of SJO. It's a great place for kids to see and interact with all of the animals native to CR and I think Mr. Ericka and I are going to enjoy it, too! The lodge is set in a cloud forest with lots of waterfalls, etc. Perhaps your boys will be too old to appreciate it, but you should look it up anyway and see what you think.

We're doing 3 nights at the Peace Lodge and then 6 nights at the FS.
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