Travel to Costa Rica: Hotel Reviews

The Best Western, Costa Rica
Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

It was only 15 minutes away from the airport and right in the middle of the city. I felt as though it was a nice transition from being in the U.S. to being in a different country since it is a big, international hotel chain. Everyone we spoke with spoke perfect English but they were also locals so they were open to sharing any advice you might need. The rooms were pretty average and clean with a great view of the courtyard and pool area at the center of the hotel. We swam in the pool during the day (very clean and well kept) and the hot tub was located to the side, a little more private, with an ‘infinity pool’ kind of feel. Overall, it was a simple hotel that offered just enough for us.

Lomas del Volcan, San Carlos
Rating: 4/5 Stars

To this day, it has been one of the most unique and memorable places I have ever stayed. It might seem sketchy when you have to go off the main road and drive up this dirt trail on an incline for a bit, but then you reach a normal road and it takes you right to the main hotel site to check in. The staff was attentive and welcoming. It was a simple dining center, both indoor and outdoor with a terrific buffet. From there, we had to keep going up the incline and walked with our luggage to our own huts. (unfortunate downside: no one carting you around the resort) Towels shaped into flamingos were propped up on each bed accompanied by rose pedals. The bathroom was very large and open which was nice when sharing with others. We had a little front porch and a back porch opening up to all the beautiful surrounding nature. When we would head out in the mornings there would be monkeys swinging around the trees, right outside our hut!! It is also very close to all the near by activities, right off the Arenal Volcano!

Condovac la Costa, Playa Hermosa
Rating: 4/5 Stars

We stayed at this large resort right off the sandy beaches. There is constant uphill and downhill traveling so you’re in for a good work out but luckily there were golf carts roaming around to help guests get around. The welcome desk was very pleasant, with tons of people around to assist you. The rooms were okay, not completely 4 star worthy, but it was everything else that made me give it this rating. They had a tennis court, game room, pool area, karaoke, infinity pool, zumba lessons, salsa lessons, a great restaurant, gift shop and most importantly: their private beach entrance which only lead you to do more! We barely even stayed in the hotel room the amenities kept us so busy. We had no problems with anything here! Highly recommend.

The Beginners Guide To Finding A Luxury Condominium For Your Next Vacation

Perusing and choosing from a variety of luxury condominiums can be overwhelming, particularly if you are next to the scene. Condos can be a particularly tricky type of accommodation, but they can be some of the most rewarding choices if you know what to look for. Fortunately, there are some standard guidelines to follow and things to watch for when choosing a hotel. Take a look at some of the following tips to help you make the most of your accommodation choice:

1. Be mindful of your price range.

This is an important tip! Make yourself a budget for your travels and then stick to it. If you must go over, then be sure you have a concrete reason for exceeding your initial estimate. The beauty of condominium-style hotels is that you have a range of options with different prices. With luxury condominiums, you should be able to specifically see the amenities for which you are spending your budget. Searching online for special deals and promotions and traveling during the off-season are all good tips to help save you some money. Join a mailing (or emailing) list for even more specials and promos.

2. Determine which amenities are important to you.

Different people will have different expectations of their hotel choice. If you are traveling with your family, you will probably be interested in a different set of amenities than if you were traveling by yourself or with adults only. Ask about swimming pools, hot tubs and saunas. Some people really enjoy having large, community spaces for everyone to lounge in after the day’s activities. Campfires and grills are also things to consider if you plan on spending a lot of time outdoors. The sky is the limit when you are discussing luxury condominiums, so make sure you keep your options open and your expectations defined.

3. Ask for a variety of room options.

For some hotel-style condos, you can expect privately owned rooms within a hotel setting. This means that a large condo building is generally under group management, but each unit is individually owned. Look for photos online to peruse your options. Checking out online reviews is also an excellent method for checking on the status of a particular condo. Keep this in mind when you are attempting to book with a company. Also, consider what would be best for your travel group. If you are going with just one person, you may want something completely different than if you were hosting children or extended family members.

4. Think about the activities in which you want to participate.

The activities in which you will participate while on vacation should influence your choice in luxury condominiums. If you are booking a ski trip, then check the access to ski lifts, ski lessons, and ski-lodge type of accommodations. If you will be in the mountains, then inquire after relaxing spa options. Adjust your sleeping accommodations to your vacation choices in order to maximize your vacation experience. Call ahead of time to see how the hotel management can accommodate you.

What You Need to Know About the Notting Hill Carnival

This event welcomes the vibes of calypso music, food stalls offering Caribbean flavors and delights and so much more. It is important to note at this point that the roads used by the parade are closed off, so if you are thinking of attending, it’s worthwhile making use of the local bus service to get to the carnival and back home or to your hotel.

This carnival has been held in Notting Hill since 1966 and has more than fifty thousand participants taking part in the parade and event with thirty sound systems which are strategically placed throughout the streets and more than one million people attend each and every year.

There are some very important things you are going to want to remember if you are thinking of attending the Notting Hill Carnival this year with the first being that you will want to use the bus service and to your own vehicle or the tube. While the tube may appear to be the most convenience, the tube service is suspended during the event, but there are extra buses which are put on service to manage the spectators and ensure you get to and from the event safely. It’s worthwhile speaking to your concierge service to identify what bus service to use, along with the time for that day.

The next thing is as a woman, don’t fall into the trap of wearing high heels, ensure you wear flat shoes, sandals if it’s a nice day. There isn’t much seating space and if you want to move along with the parade and experience all the carnival has to offer, then you will be thankful for wearing sensible shoes rather than high heels which can make the day uncomfortable.

In addition to this, the Notting Hill Carnival does take place in the summer months and the sun in London can get exceptionally hot, especially if you are not used to it. Be sure to pack a bag for you and the family which includes sun cream, a sun hat and sun glasses. It’s advisable to throw in a few bottles of water to reduce the risk of dehydration while attending this fun event.

Remember this is a day of family fun, so take the children along. If you have younger children, ensure that they have comfortable shoes. That they have your telephone number in case they get lost and for younger ones, take the push chair. You may think the push chair is going to get in the way, but when you spend a day on your feet enjoying the festivities, carrying your youngest child is not something you are going to want to be doing you will be thankful you packed the push chair to take along with you.

When you choose where to stand to watch the parade, take careful note of where the speakers are located and try and move a little bit away. Remember these speakers are catering to thousands of people and they can be exceptionally loud. Unless you love loud music, you may find moving away slightly will make your experience a little more enjoyable.

Looking for a Cozy Holiday Stay? Manali Cottages Are The Perfect Choice

Manali is among the most popular hill stations of India and I have done nothing but appreciate its beauty and contrasts. It has a combination of relaxing and wild as it has something for every kind of traveler. This magical town has become a very popular spot for travelers. Thousands flock here to enjoy the many things it has to offer. The amazing thing about Manali is that even with the increased numbers of visitors it has always managed to handle them in terms of accommodation.

The options vary from Homestays to villas, apartments to guesthouses. The cottages here are some of the best I have experienced. They are simply charming and designed to offer nothing short of the best during the holidays. Most of the cottages I have been to have beautiful backyards for relaxing and calming down and balconies that offer magnificent views of the Himalayas. From the comfort of your cottage you can enjoy splendid views, enjoy the night sky and then wake up to uplifting bird chirps and beautiful sunrises. I select my cottage according to the kind of experience I want to enjoy during my stay.

Cottages in Manali come in different sizes ranging from 2 bedrooms to some as big as 8 bedrooms. I love checking into the cozy 2 bedroom cottage when looking to spend an intimate holiday, whereas the larger ones come in handy when traveling with a bunch of friends or family. Selecting the appropriate size means that everyone gets to enjoy some privacy during the vacation and everyone is happy at the end of the day.

Apart from being available in different sizes to meet different holiday preferences, I love the fact that the cottages here are well distributed throughout the city. There are even cottages near popular location of Manali like Central Bus Depot and Kanyal Road. Considering that I always have a list of things and places I wish to experience during my stay here, I always go for cottages that are in close proximity to these areas for convenience.

When packing for a holiday I consider the things that I will need like my hairdryer and other personal effects. Luckily the Manali cottages are well equipped with amenities any holidaymaker would need. I do not need to carry almost everything from just so as to enjoy my stay in the town. The sufficient providence also means that I spend less trying to put my stay together. The cottages have modern amenities offering comfortable, convenient stay every time.

The rates are of course a major consideration. Having traveled for a considerable length of time, I am now well aware that the rates largely depend on the size of the facility, the amenities provided for, and the length of my stay. With so many different cottages scattered all over Manali, it is very easy to find something affordable yet something that I am bound to enjoy throughout my vacation.

9 Tips for Selecting the Best Hotel at a Tourist Place

In a tourist place, there are hundreds of hotels available for travelers. To select a hotel in the city for your travel, it is important for you to identify what you actually need from it. The needs may vary from individual to Individual and from family to family.

The below-given tips will make your search for best hotels and resorts easy and productive. It will save you time and also reduce frustration.

1. The first work you will do is to filter and sort hotels on the basis of facilities they provide and the budget you can afford. First of all, put in the name of the city and the date on which you need to book a hotel.

2. After filtering date and locations wise, now you can sort resorts amenity wise. There are hotels which offer free WiFi services, parking and swimming facilities to guests. I for myself will always select a hotel offering these amenities.

3. If you are traveling along with your family then you can look for a family hotel in the city and travel with a Girlfriend or wife, then you can look for a “romantic” type of hotel.

4. A good hotel is one that is located close to the airport and has decent road and rail links. Although these resorts mention these details in their description, it is not possible for a traveler to read the description of each hotel.

5. There are some hotels booking sites that show hotels on a single map. You can use their map to find a hotel that meets your travel requirements.

6. Some people intentionally look for a hotel that offers its guests free breakfast while as others don’t consider free breakfast as that much important. Similarly, some homestay have free WI-Fi service for guests. If you really need internet then only makes it a deciding factor.

7. These days every hotel has its own website where they make announcements and update their guests about any new development. People post their reviews directly on their website. Read those reviews and what people think about the hotel.

8. Price is the deciding factor when it comes to making a hotel booking for an average person. An average income person may not be able to afford a costly hotel. Booking engines sort hotels price wise. Some resorts offer discounts to their guests. So check out that which hotel in the city is offering discounts on bookings.

9. The environment of a hotel should be soothing and pleasant to have a peaceful stay during your travel. A good and healthy environment will ensure your well-being. There are a number of green and best hotels and resorts, visit their websites and select an Eco-friendly hotel for your travel.


When it comes to select a hotel, always focus on what matters to you most and don’t pay heed to other matters. That will only waste your time. Filtering out the hotels that meet your requirements is an ideal way to identify best hotels.

What You Need To Know Before Looking For A Business Hotel

Whether you are traveling for business or are looking for a place to host a professional conference, finding the right business hotel can be tricky. With a lot at stake, you want to be certain you contract with a professional, competent and reputable hotel. Fortunately, there are some tell-tale signs of what constitutes stellar accommodations. Take a look at the following guide to help you locate the right hotel for your needs:

Seek out experienced staff

Hosting a business meeting in a hotel setting requires the employment of a competent and professional staff. From the concierge to the manager, to the chef, it all matters, as these people can make or break your event. With quality employees, you can rest assured that they will fill in the gaps in which you may lack experience. From large matters like seating arrangements and reservation help to technological assistance with PowerPoint and surround sound, to the small matters of having refreshments, it is important that your event run smoothly. And an experienced staff at a business hotel can make that happen.

If you are simply searching for accommodations while on a business trip, then the staff still matters. With a top-notch concierge, you can relax while the employees manage your logistical needs. It is stressful enough staying away from home. An unprofessional and rude staff can only add to that stress.

Don’t ignore the amenities

Most people believe it is unnecessary to consider any luxury item at a business hotel when traveling. This is a tragic belief! Just because you are tending to work-related matters does not mean you should not enjoy your stay. In fact, when working, luxury should be a priority. A good swimming pool and/or workout gym can help relieve stress and help you maintain your mental and physical sanity, which is an ever-growing need for many professionals. If you are unsure as to what amenities the hotel offers, you should call the front desk or concierge. And do not be afraid to ask.

If you are hosting a business event, this may be even more important, with many employees traveling to your conference. Choosing respectable accommodations indicates an adherence to quality and luxury and reflects well on your company.

Track online promotions

Many hotels and inns offer some fantastic deals, especially for the frequent traveler. In order to take advantage of these deals, you should never neglect your online searches. Signing up to be added to an email list is a terrific way to keep in touch and monitor periodic deals. And again, when in doubt, call the hotel personally and inquire after any specials they may offer.

Try not to neglect the location

While you may not always have a say over which location you are to travel, a business hotel should still be in a beautiful setting, if possible. This is especially true for those companies hosting work conferences. Find a unique town by looking at the tourist attractions. With beautiful scenery, unique restaurants and fun shopping excursions, you can transition your conference to one many people choose to frequent for years to come.

Ask Yourself These Five Questions Before Making Hotel Reservations

When making hotel reservations, some people tend to rush and overlook important aspects that can improve, or hinder, their vacation or business plans. Some claim that accommodations can be the single most important aspect of a trip, as where you sleep tends to set the mood for the remainder of your trip. Whether you are traveling in a group setting, with your immediate family or solo, you should take a look at the following five questions to always ask yourself when booking your next sleeping lodge:

1. Am I visiting a great town?

You may not always have control over your destination, but the city or town in which you will be residing does matter. Take a look at the surrounding area and choose a place that can insure you have a great visit. If you are uncertain as to local attractions, contact the hotel concierge or local chamber of commerce for information. Pay close attention to whether there will be any festivals during your visit and make special note of the season. Your attention to the small details of a locale can really help (or hurt!) your visit.

2. Is the staff friendly, professional and experienced?

Making hotel reservations should revolve around your relationship with the staff. If you feel that the staff is immediately rude and unwelcoming, then go with your instincts and find another spot. If it is just one employee, ask to speak with the manager. A well-run hotel should employ a courteous staff that has experience in the hotel industry. A knowledgeable and friendly staff can really help you out with many aspects of your trip, and they really do make a difference.

3. Do the rooms offer what I need?

Most hotels offer a variety of rooms. Consider with whom you will be traveling and look for the best deal in a well-laid out room. Ask about different rental options and compare rooms. Ask about bed, with singles, doubles or full, and pick something that fits your budget and your personality. Also, do not neglect to inquire after both the view from the room, as well as the location of the room to fire exits, and other important buildings.

4. Have I checked for any specials?

Nothing can help you save money quicker than searching for online deals. This can be from different travel search engines, online email lists, or direct phone calls in which you inquire after possible promotions or savings events. Never neglect this as you work to make hotel reservations.

5. Am I pleased with the amenities?

Many people fail to ask about the amenities of a hotel, and this can be a mistake. Traveling to a hotel with a swimming pool can be relaxing or freeing for a family with children. Hot tubs, concierge and room service are also amenities which you may care about. When in doubt, call the front desk of any potential accommodations and ask about specific amenities that you may choose to have. It never hurts to ask.

Finding a Hotel Tonight Is Easier Than You Think

Finding a hotel tonight, or any night for that matter, is much easier than you think. In fact, the travel industries are such that the consumer is no longer working on the whim of an outside agent working in semi-secrecy. Consumer protection progress in the industry, as well as streamlined planning tools, have made it so that anyone can jump online & find what they need.

In this case, we’re focusing on the ease with which someone can plan a stay at a hotel as soon as tonight. Perhaps the single greatest reason that planning a quick hotel stay has become so simple is the advent of the World Wide Web – the Internet. The Internet has allowed us to have a wealth of information at our fingertips for a few decades now, and with that knowledge comes some serious power. For example, there was once a time when knowing what hotels were nearby was the only real way you could choose a hotel. You subsequently had to look them up in the phone book (barring you didn’t make a mistake in their name), and you really had to hope that there was something available at the very last-minute. The number of variables was through the roof, and in many ways, consumers were operating at the discretion of the hotels.

This would be enough to convince even a hardened traveler to cry, “Uncle”, but the real struggle to book a room came when you had to travel out-of-town. Imagine being on a road you’re following on a physical map, and inevitably you’d end up somewhere whose geography you didn’t know, and you certainly didn’t know of any hotels, motels, or motorways you could bank on for a last-minute room. Today, however, you can know your way around town by way of your phone’s Internet access.

Perhaps the other most significant reason for being able to book a hotel room with ease comes by way of competition in the industry. There was once a time when you had a limited amount of choices for hotel stays. Regardless of whether you were traveling & moving about due to vacation or work, you were in a position where your lodging money went one of only a couple of places. Nowadays, you’re able to do quick online searches as to the quality (star rating) of you proposed lodging, amenities, as well as proximity to & involvement with your destination. Moreover, there are a number of hotels vying for your business, which means they are willing to work with prospective customers on pricing & flexible booking simply because they want your booking in a major way. With so much choice & with an added boost in saving on your booking, you as the consumer are the big winner.

When it comes to finding a hotel room tonight, you should set your mind at ease. A little common sense, some quick wit with online searches, and a comfort in knowing that you as the customer have some serious booking power should be your guides to hotel booking nirvana.

Last-Minute Hotel Deals Will Make a Procrastinator Out of You

Last-minute hotel deals were once looked at as being able to get what you could at a price higher than you really wanted to pay. In other words, the idea of a ‘deal’ was relative and was non-existent. Sure, there were times you could score some cheap travel lodging, but it was rare & had a slew of hidden issues attached.

Nowadays, the notion of planning ahead for any type of travel seems almost crazy. What’s more, this applies to travel in-state, state-to-state-, and even international travel. No longer are borders problematic, and considering how finicky lodging can be for some travelers, this is especially welcome & also perplexing.

How is the ease of making last-minute hotel plans possible? One word – Internet. The fact remains that the Internet has revolutionized the travel industry, and you are in the driver’s seat for the entire travel booking process. Never in the history of the world has it been easier to be so involved in all facets of travel, and the truly mesmerizing thing that it just keeps getting better.

Websites all over the world for everything from the most basic motor lodge to the best five-star hotel offer user-friendly websites that allow customers the chance to even be able to see what rooms may be available. Some offer live chats with prospective travelers, and even more profound are the hotels that offer a 360° view of available rooms so that when you book, you know exactly what you’ll be seeing when you arrive. The advancement of technology is just astounding.

21st century technology has now spawned the dawn of the mobile app, which connects prospective hotel visitors to the entire world by way of a little application. On these apps, you can explore rooms, reviews, prices, and even proximity to locals attractions. Even more crucial is that these apps often have four to five-star ratings for their accuracy & ease of use, essentially silencing the critics who believe that such ‘flash-in-the-pan’ tech is limited.

A last-minute hotel room is made even easier because there is so much competition between competing hotels for your business, you can almost list your own terms, including price. There was a time when you were stuck with one option for a hotel stay, and since everyone was vying for the same rooms (i.e., Spring Break, Memorial Day/Labor weekends), you really had to plan far in advance to make sure you had somewhere to stay. While this may still be the case in more rural areas, more often than not, you really have a tremendous amount of choice when it comes to the hotel you want with the type of room you want, and you can wait until even the same day to book.

As a final note, though, travel experts do advise travelers to use common sense when booking their lodging & urge them to understand that waiting too long for last-minute hotel deals can result in having no lodging available all together, so be mindful of your plans & book accordingly.

Summer in London 2017

One of the top festivals that take place in the capital city during the summer period is Lovebox, which is a two day music and dance festival which takes place at Victoria Park. This event welcomes the top DJ’s and live bands and a host of performances. It is fun for the yonger generation that are looking for fun and excitement during their city break.

The next top event that draws millions of people to London each summer is the famous Wimbledon Tennis Championships that takes place for two weeks at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club. This tennis championship is the oldest tennis championship in the world dating back to 1877 and today it is one in four major grand slams, yet the only one that is played on a grass court. It attracts some of the best names in tennis right now and is brimming with excitement, strawberries, cocktails and a day of fun in the sun.

The Somerset House Summer Series is a reputable open air festival that attracts thousands of visitors who are looking for a day of music, dance and festivities. It is definitely not one you will want to miss when next in London.

The Lambeth Country Show always attracts hundreds of visitors to London. In 2017 it is celebrating forty two years with home grown vegetables on display, a flower competition, sheep shearing and even a mini farm for the younger children. It’s a fun day out for the whole family.

AfroPunk and Sunfall are both top dance festivals with leading DJ’s and bands that arre guaranteed to get you dancing. Not to mention the famous Notting Hill Carnival, which is the largest street party in London with calypso music, a parade and over thirty sound systems placed strategical through the streets which sees over fifty thousand participants.

There are a few things to remember when traveling to London for the summer season. Whether you are visiting for a mini break or for a couple of weeks, you want to ensure the accommodation you choose isn’t only comfortable, but is ideally located. All the events that take place in London are throughout the city and you will want to be close to the public transport links to ensure you can get to them with ease.

Take a close look at the top attractions and sights you may want to visit during your stay. Do you want to experience the famous London Eye, a giant Ferris wheel that will provide you with staggering views as far as your eyes can see, sitting on the edge of the River Thames. In fact this is the ideal place for some romance, a sunset ride and maybe even a proposal.

Buckingham Palace changing of the guards is another event not to be missed. This attracts hundreds of visitors to the palace gates to watch the guards doing their change, a routine that has been done for years and is a procession like no other.

Remember that there are some fantastic restaurants in London, owned by Michelin star chefs, such as Gordon Ramsay. The concierge at your hotel will be able to advise you and make your reservation on your behalf for added convenience.