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This article was written on 30 Jan 2013, and is filled under To: Costa Rica.

Our Stay at Barcelo Tambor Beach in Costa Rica

Located within the vicinity of Curu National Wildlife Refuge, the Barcelo Tambor Beach is a great all inclusive resort for families. The resort, located by the beach of Costa Rica, also features a casino.


After a few weeks of freezing cold weather this year, I felt the urge to book a last-minute escape with the family. I really didn’t care where we were going, I simply wanted to escape the cold weather, and so did everybody else !

So our ultimate reasons for booking this resort were :

1) the price
2) great pictures of the area on the internet
3) great weather forecast on The Weather Forecast prior to booking (they forecast 7 days of warm weather and sunshine)

tambor beachWe arrived to San Jose in the morning. During the booking, we had the choice to either opt for an internal flight between San Jose and Tambor (about 25/30minutes), or a shuttle/ferry transfer (about 5 hours). Although I liked the idea of seeing some of the country by bus/ferry, I felt that we would be too exhausted from the flight to enjoy another 5 hours of car/ferry ride, which was so right! So we continued to Tambor using a local airline, which by the way wasn’t near as comfy as the major airline that brought us to San Jose. Upon our arrival at Tambor airport, we realized that there was an airport tax fee (2.25$ per person, something that apparently wasn’t covered by our package), so make sure to carry some change with you (which you should have on you anyway for tipping!)

Here’s my overall impression of the resort

Grounds
The grounds of the resort were well maintained and clean. The kids loved the wildlife around the resort, like iguanas, parrots, monkeys and more!

Staff
The staff was great. Very friendly, and quick to help you!

Rooms
Prior to booking, we did request a quiet room by the nature trail. We were offered the wrong room, but the front desk quickly resolved the problem for us. The rooms were well-equipped, although they do need to be upgraded.

Food
The daily buffet was just ok. Not bad, but definitely not stunning, although I did enjoy the selection of FRESH fruits. The a-la-carte steak restaurant however, was excellent, and the Japanese a-la-carte restaurant was mediocre (like in every other resort I’ve been too).

Beach
The beach was very close to the resort. It was nice, although a little bit rocky, and I recommend footwear.

Pool
We did spend a lot of the time at the pool instead, which was large and offered plenty of lounge chairs. There is one swim-up bar, which is always nice.

barcelo tambor parrotsThe hotel is not busy during weekdays, and we almost had the pool to ourselves some days! The pool has music all day, so if you are looking for a quiet relaxing space to read a book, the beach is always a great option :)

However, the hotel gets pretty crowded during weekends. Apparently locals love this hotel and the pools and buffet can be quite busy on Saturdays and Sundays, which makes weekends the best time to book day trips outside the resort. But if you decide to stay, the local are quite nice people, and will give you the occasion to brush up on your Spanish.

CONCLUSION

Overall, a great value resort. This is a good all-inclusive resort for families with a restrictive budget, as long as your bear in mind that this is a 3 to 4 star hotel, not a 5 star.

 

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