This is our third time to a Secrets resort, and they are top of the line. We stayed here on day three of opening, so I think most of the negative experiences we had (which were few) are just kinks that will quickly be ironed out. Food: Papagayo has three restaurants with dinner options: Japanese, Italian, and Seafood. There is no lunch buffet--you pretty much have to go sit down at the Seaside Grill, unless you want ceviche or some sort of salad from one of the bars. That's okay, though, because the food was good and you can't beat the view. The breakfast buffet was great! Dinners were lovely, but the menu was very limited due to it being a new resort. I think that will improve as they get established. Rooms: Nice, but small. Super clean. Wifi was good all but one of the days. We were on level four, and you can walk downhill when you're in your casual clothes, but walking up is a trek (we only tried that once, and we're in pretty decent shape.) You can call for a shuttle, and they get there pretty quickly, but there were a few times we had to wait a bit. Beach: Simply put—AMAZING. It’s on a small bay. There’s only one other timeshare on that bay, and that was mostly empty. The water was calm and warm. The resort provides kayaks, snorkeling gear, paddle boards, and more. We never had to leave the resort, because there was so much to do for free on the beach. We never had to fight for a beach chair, no matter what time we got there. Bars: Shout out to Jose, the night bartender at Barefoot Grill. What a great guy. When we told him we wanted to take home some Costa Rican coffee, he offered to pick some up for us on his way to work the next day. Of course, we refused, but it was very nice of him to offer. The day guy, Henry, was awesome, too, and has an uncanny memory for drink orders! The wait staff at the bars during the day was fine with the exception of one gentleman who would take our order, not bring our order, then get clearly frustrated and act offended when I went to the bar to get something myself. All the while bringing drinks to various people seated around us. We finally realized the only people getting service were a few couples who were regularly tipping him. One of the big perks of Secrets is that you don’t HAVE to carry tip money around, because it’s truly all-inclusive. In three Secrets trips, he’s the only person I’ve ever encountered who acted that way. We're not cheap-os--it's just that at a place like this you'd go broke in five minutes if you tipped everyone who helped you with something every single time. Staff: For the most part, they were friendly, professional, helpful, and fun. The activities director, Andres, was really fun to talk to, and gave us some great tips on other Secrets resorts we might want to visit. One other thing worth mentioning—the mosquitos are absolutely insane, so pack bug spray, and use it religiously. Two weeks later I’m still itching! Overall: We can’t help compare this place to Silversands, which is where we honeymooned. That place wins hands down for food. But Papagayo wins for beach and beautiful weather during the Thanksgiving week. We had a wonderful trip, and would go back and recommend it to friends without hesitation.
To be honest, this is an older resort so don't expect flashy, shiny, State of the Art 'glitz' - but that is overrated anyway! This place was awesome! The food was outrageously delicious - no really - everything we ate was "shut-the-front-door delicious", and the rooms (which are updated) and property were clean and well kept. Can't say enough about the service either. All of the staff - from janitors to management were awesome and the ones that went way above and beyond for us were Rebecca at the Aqua, Kenneth at the Seaside Grill, and Jarvi by the pool (idk, this guy was always sweeping and mopping the pool area and was always happy, pleasant, and engaging - made us feel like we were at our neighbors pool!)
My husband and I have been on many beautiful beach vacations over the years. This year was a special anniversay and we wanted to go all out and this stunning location in Costa Rica was the perfect spot. The distance from Liberia - Daniel Oduber Quiros Intl Airport to Secrets Papagayo was only about 20 minutes into the mountains. The moment we got out of the van their team was friendly and accommodating. Our suite was impecable! The view was fantastic! We met people from all over the world and it's no wonder they wanted to come here, it's amazing. Market Cafe is open early for breakfast, or you can order a meal from the Ipad in your room and have it there in a flash. There are several restaurants to choose from giving you many dining options, whether you want casual or elegant. One day we rented a car, which is available at the resort location, and traveled south to Tamarindo Beach. It's an adorable little town with local food and shops for souvenirs. We came home with such sweet memories and breathtaking photos that we will enjoy for years. It's not impossible to think that we may go back again! It was that beautiful!
Overall this resort was clean, staff was nice, friendly and Cheap Caribbean was very easy to work with. We got a private shuttle to and from the airport through AMSTAR. Each driver we had was on time, clean car and I felt safe while they drove. I would recommend this resort to my friends and family with one exception. DO NOT GO ON THE BEACH WITHOUT WATER SHOES!!!! First night there my husband and I went to the beach from 4p-530p and just laid out with a drink in hand. All was great until we returned home and found I came home with 25 sand flea bites on the bottom of my feet. My husband however didn't get one sand flea bite because he wore water shoes the whole time on the beach. After 2 miserable days of burning, itching, numbness I finally was able to go to the doctor and got RX cream to help the pain. I highly recommend you go on at least one excursion while there. We did the sunset cruise and loved it. We saw turtles, whales and dolphins. The boat was extremely clean and the food was great! It was well worth the extra price and again the transportation was through AMSTAR.
My boyfriend and I went for a relaxing getaway and this resort was perfect for that. The staff/ service was incredible. The location was beautiful and clean. Since we went on opening weekend there were certainly kinks being worked out but overall a great experience. (Restaurants not offering all menu items yet- things that can be improved upon quickly with ease).
Do's: - The resort offered a lot of free amenities, such as snorkeling, paddle boarding and kayaking. I recommend taking advantage of the activities because they were a wonderful way to experience Costa Rica differently. - The food at the resort was very good, which was surprising. However, they didn't offer as many restaurants as other all inclusive I have been to in the past. - Take advantage of excursions offered so you can see all the amazing sites in Costa Rica. Dont's: - Be aware of how far some of the excursions are from the resort. Some of the actives were pretty far and took the entire day. - If you are in one of the rooms higher up be aware that the shuttles run pretty regularly during the day but are much slower at night. - The bars are only open until 12:00 am, which is considerably earlier than other resorts I have stayed at in the past. Overall: The resort was clean, the service was good and the scenery was amazing. I would recommend this resort to any beach lovers like me!
Wonderful vacation!! Service was Outstanding. Our favorite waiters were Alberto by the Main pool, William by the SPA and the Absolute BEST was Jeancarlo, on the Beach. Jeancarlo really believes in customer service, he aims to make you feel at home. The gym was adequate. The SPA was so relaxing that we forgot where we were - completely. On the resort, you have the best of two worlds. If you want to socialize, party and experience the resort entertainment hang out by the main pool area. If you want to relax, experience peace and tranquility, hang out by the Spa. Nature is in full affect as well. We saw Raccoons, Pelicans and nature birds, a family of Monkeys, Iguana’s, Gecko’s and Scorpions, yes those too. Pura Vida!
We'd never been to an adult-only resort, but after our trip to Secrets, now it's our vacation style of choice. Pool and restaurant service were professional and friendly. Bar waiters circulate around the pool and beach areas and are always accommodating. The guests were enjoyable. The entertainment staff have activities planned throughout the day, We enjoyed the cooking demonstration, water aerobic lessons and sunset kayak tour. Other activities are also available and some are capacity limited, so be sure to inquire at the Activity desk which is adjacent to the main pool. The resort is spread out enough that it seemed uncrowded at the beach and pool. The room was fabulous, total luxury. Room service is served discreetly to a box from the outside and can be retrieved from inside the room. There were lovely Christmas decorations and a special dinner served beachside on Christmas Eve.
If you want to relax in front of the beach or by the pool, this is the place for you. It was absolutely amazing! I have never been more relaxed. The resort has a lot of hills. We were close to the main area, so walked about 1/2 the time. The drivers of the shuttles that come around were hilarious and we never waited more than 2 minutes when we called the shuttle. AMAZING Food!! Our favorite was the Seaside Grill. What an amazing view of the ocean as well as great calamari and steak. My husband said the seafood was amazing too! They cleaned and restocked our room every day but 1 day. Beds were comfortable and room service was GREAT! Resort was always very clean. We got a taxi ride to the resort -- that was SCARY because he kept passing vehicles on a 2 way road. On the way back we booked a ride to the airport through the resort -- it was sooooooo nice! The driver was very kind and I felt safe the entire ride. The preferred club is definitely the way to go. We got greated with Mimosa's and treated WONDERFULLY! THANK YOU! I needed some pampering. Also got an 1 1/2 hour massage which was soooooooo heavenly and relaxing. I highly recommend doing that while you are there. I didn't want to leave!
We just got back from Secrets Papagayo and we had a wonderful time. This was our 3rd stay at a Secrets Resort and the service was the best yet. Everyone is genuinely eager to please with a "my pleasure". Mauvert went above and beyond to make my sisters 40th bday very special. From arranging a breakfast room service, decorating her room and a private dinner for our group! Noe was our server at Porafino. He was always smiling and was very knowledgeable about the wine selection. Jean-Carlo was our server on the beach and was just simply adorable. The drinks and food were great! Our room was in the 300 level. The resort is VERY HILLY. Be prepared for a workout! The room was nice and bed was super comfy. There was a family of Howler monkeys outside of our room. It was very cool to see. They do have shuttles to drive you around and they do come around often. Just keep in mind that this isn't a "let me run to the room real quick" kind of resort. Pool and beach were very nice but if you want to get a seat by the pool GO EARLY! They were all taken by 8:45 while we were there. And there are definitely not enough umbrellas. It was 100 degrees while we were there so they really need to provide more shade. The beach is public so there were some locals over to the side but it was fine. There are local vendors that do come and make their rounds trying to sell you stuff. Some were more annoying then others. It did put a little damper on wanting to lay by the beach. If you don't want to be bothered, stay on the beach by the quiet pool by the spa. One thing that was odd was the distinct smell when the sprinklers were on. They must use compose or fertilizer or something because it smells like sewage. That was the reason for the 4 stars. Anyway, I would recommend staying here. It was a beautiful place and I hope to return one day! Pura Vida!