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I stayed a few weeks ago at the Andaz Peninsula Papagayo Resort in the Guanacaste province of Costa Rica located in the northwestern part of the country. It was a great deal for me – as a Category 4 Hyatt hotel I was able to use my Chase Hyatt Visa free night award and then use 15,000 Gold Passport points a night, less their 20 percent off points redemption promotion, so it was a thrifty 36,000 points for the 4 night stay.
After flying into Liberia, we rented a car which is relatively inexpensive in Costa Rica, but they get you at the mandatory insurance which runs from $13 to $26 a night. It was an easy 40 minute drive to the Andaz. In the valet parking circle, we were greeted by the purple Andaz VW van, which for a short time was used as a hotel shuttle.
Andaz Peninsula Papagayo Resort Costa Rica
The lobby was open-air, and was beautiful. It had an outdoorsy elegance with amazing views of a terrace, all leading to the blue waters of Culebra Bay.The 153 rooms and suites at the Andaz are separated into 8 buildings, and then there is a spa and gym, as well as three restaurants on-site. The distance between the buildings and common areas can be quite a hike, but the Andaz offers golf cart rides, and it was easy to call for one, or just grab one in passing. One of the other fun features was that the Andaz gave you a couple pairs of flip flops, and straw hats to keep. They also loaned you a beach bag which you could take home for $30.Our room was a standard King room on the corner of building 5.The balcony was nicely furnished, and it was easy to spend early mornings there, as well as time in the early evenings when the howling monkeys went swinging thru the trees.In the room were welcome amenities including local fruit, coconut chews. The Hyatt Diamond amenity was an invite for two tropical sangrias and an appetizer at Chao Pescao, the seafood inspired tapas restaurant.The property had two beach areas, and three pool areas – the main pool, and adults only pool, and a spa pool.As the property was out-of-the-way, there were some definite pros-and-cons:
The biggest cons are that there isn’t much within a 15 minute driving radius other than The Four Seasons, The Prieta Beach Club, and the Marina Papagayo which features The Dive Bar.
The biggest pro is that it felt like a vacation – glamorous camping in a 4 star resort. It was fun to get away, swim, visit the beach on the bay, while having good internet, excellent air conditioning and a luxurious bathroom. It was also fun to take random pictures:
While this I’m sure the Andaz wasn’t as luxurious as the Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, the Andaz had its own funky indoor/outdoor eco vibe. We stayed there four nights, which was just perfect after arriving around 3pm on the first day, and then spending the second day at the Four Seasons and Prieta Beach club, the third day exploring the surf town of Tamarindo, and the fourth day we rafted in the Arenal Volcano region. And now that both Alaska Airlines and Southwest Airlines are starting new non-stop service to LIR in the fall of 2015, this resort should become even quicker and easier to visit for a few days. I know I am coming back. Has anyone else visited and had an amazing stay?
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