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“Our favourite restaurant”

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Cristal Ballena Boutique Hotel & Spa
Ranked #6 of 13 Hotels in Uvita
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 16 February 2015

This was our favourite restaurant for a nice night out. Happy hour starts early with 2 for 1 drinks while you watch the sunset -- their view is spectacular! Then, you move into the dining area for an elegant dinner, with continenta cuisine. The owners both came to greet us and welcome us to their "home", and their pride in their accomplishments with this place was well merited. The service was the best we had during our 4 weeks in Costa Rica. My pepper sauce tenderloin, my husband's fish in a delciate lemon-cream sauce, our appy's and deserts (flans, but so nice!) were all superb. A nice change from the "tico" cuisine; worth the price for a special night out.

We didn't see the hotel rooms, but the pool and grounds of the resort looked beautiful.

I believe this is the nicest area of Costa Rica. If you don't want to rent a house, this is definitely a resort worth checking out.

Stayed: January 2015, travelled as a couple
Thank SFandJP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (292)
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76 - 80 of 292 reviews

Reviewed 14 February 2015

A really beautiful setting high in the hills overlooking the jungle and ocean. Breakfast is fine and included. Dinner and lunch are very well prepared but at a premium price. I was shocked at how tasty most of my meals were. The pool is irresistible I was in it many times a day. The service and advise from the front desk was excellent. We did not have a car but did not feel trapped as $10 got us a taxi to Marino ballena anytime I wanted. Having said that next time i will rent a car as Costa rica is not intimidating now that I am here. For sure if I was in Uvita again I would stay here.

Room Tip: Ask for a room facing the pool and ocean.
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  • Stayed: February 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Slowrunnings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 January 2015

This hotel has spectacular views from everywhere. The rooms are big and have a large terrace, which is very nice to appreciate the sunsets. The bathrooms are a little dated and are going to need a flip very soon, It is importante to take into account that it is going to be a little difficult to stay at this hotel if you don´t have a car and want move around freely. The hotel is up a hill (that is why you can enjoy spectacular views) and there is nothing much around it.

The free breakfast is OK, but they could offer a larger selection of fruit and natural juices, particularly considering that an ample variety of fruit is readily available and very cheap in the area.

The food at the restaurant is good, but a little overpriced. However, the hotel is excellent for a quiet and relaxed time. It is also great that they have Mitzi, (a beautiful little cat), to cheer you up every evening.

  • Stayed: January 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank Montse450
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 January 2015

We had a gorgeous, spacious room with an incredible patio overlooking the ocean. We enjoyed our late afternoon sunsets and would then head out for dinner. Mornings we were treated to the wonderful sounds of birds and then a delicious breakfast. We were often greeted by someone in the Steiner family either during breakfast or in the evening. They were so friendly and had some wonderful suggestions for our adventures during the day. After a daily adventure, our kids really enjoyed returning to the amazing pool where any way you turn you have something beautiful to look at; rain forest, ocean, trees filled with local birds.

  • Stayed: December 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Stephanie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 January 2015 via mobile

Unfortunately this was our least favourite place of all the places we stayed during our 3.5 week tour of Costa Rica. The male receptionist was rude and arrogant - we were quite shocked. Staying in the 'rustic' cabins is not advised, for several reasons (broken lights, broken tv, huge spiders, broken fan, unpleasant bathroom..!). Similarly, if you don't have a car, don't stay here, it's hard to get anywhere from the resort. There is a big pool but loads of other tourists and children were there while we were there so it wasn't particularly peaceful. We had booked a 4-night stay but left after 1 night and went to Dominical instead - it's a laid-back, surf town a few miles from Uvita, and probably a better bet for young people/couples!

Stayed: December 2014, travelled as a couple
3  Thank James E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Consuhotel, Director of Sales at Cristal Ballena Boutique Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 10 February 2015

Dear Guest,
We deeply regret your disappointment while you stayed in our Adventure Lodge cabins. We apologize for the attitude of the receptionist, those days we had new extra people working in the hotel to increase reception staff during peak season. It would be good you indicated this attitude issue in the moment it happened and spoken directly to our Manager in order to avoid this situation to be repeated.
If you find any damage to the room, something very unusual in our resort, you can simply call reception and ask for the corresponding arrangement, because we have maintenance workers 24 hours on site, to solve any problem with lights, fans, doors, pipes, and even spiders.
As we indicated on the website of our hotel, the Adventure Lodges are rustic log cabins, located in the hotel gardens 200 meters from the reception. Cristal Ballena is located in a quiet mountain area, with an excellent ocean view, away from the bustle of town, but if you want to leave the hotel, from 6 AM to 10 PM at reception you can request a free shuttle to the beach (if you don’t want to walk for 15 minutes), or a service taxi to roam around. 10 daily buses stop just 300 meters away.
In our hotel families with children are welcome, but they are not allowed to run, shout, or alter the serenity that characterizes our accommodation. We are delighted that you found in Dominical your ideal holiday destination, with their wonderful beaches recognized as a surfers paradise for their huge waves. We appreciate your comments, which will certainly help us improve our already, high quality standard.
Hotel Management

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Additional Information about Cristal Ballena Boutique Hotel & Spa

Address: Ballena Beach | 7 km (4 miles) al Sur de Uvita, Uvita, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Uvita
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Green Hotel in Uvita
#5 Spa Hotel in Uvita
Price Range: ₹ 9,618 - ₹ 18,261 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Cristal Ballena Boutique Hotel & Spa 2.5*
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Resort Cristal Ballena is located in the midst of its own 12-hectare grounds, very close to the unique "Marino Ballena" Marine National Park and mountains covered in rainforest. The hotel features 14 Junior Suites, 3 Master Suites, along with 2 Family suites. Due to its excellent location, our guests can enjoy breathtaking ocean views from the big balcony. Our stylish, spacious Suites are equipped with four-poster bed, AC, ceiling fan, WLan, TV, telephone, minibar, safe, coffee maker and hairdryer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Cristal Ballena Osa Peninsula

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