Alma Del Pacifico Beach Hotel & Spa
What We Love
- Daily continental breakfast is included in the Jetsetter rate
- Private villas with terraces, gardens and some with plunge pools
- Open-air thatch-roofed restaurant using garden ingredients and a seaside spa with organic treatments
- Art is a big theme here: Rooms are filled with original paintings, mosaics and tapestries
- READ MORE: Find your perfect Costa Rica vacation
What To Know
- Villas have WiFi and TVs; cell phone service is spotty, but you're here to relax and take things down a notch
- There can be riptides on Playa Esterillos, but you can take a dip in the two back-to-back swimming pools or work on your tan at the beach
- Located halfway between Jaco Beach and Manuel Antonio National Park
- If you're renting a car, we recommend reserving one with a GPS
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
Less than two hours from San Jose, Alma del Pacifico sits on four landscaped acres flanked by jungle and the Pacific Ocean. A top-to-toe revamp in 2011 added a slew of modern amenities, including TVs, WiFi and a beach bar, but the signature multicolored buildings, eclectic artwork, organic cuisine and blissfully chill vibe remain undisturbed.
Bed and Bath
The open-plan Garden Villas are a spacious 455 square feet, with large terraces, private walled gardens, arching wood plank ceilings, huge windows and sitting areas. Art is a big theme here, and each room is filled with original paintings, mosaics and tapestries; even indoor/outdoor bathrooms are done up with colorful mosaic tiles. Villas have King beds, though families or groups can request the handful of rooms with two Full beds, and all have built in daybeds for lounging away from the two pools or beach.
Open-air Mosaic Restaurant serves up a seafood-heavy menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with many dishes using ingredients grown in the hotel’s own organic gardens and orchard. Or go for lighter bites and cocktails at the Beach Bar — perfectly positioned to watch the sun set over the Pacific Ocean. For activities away from the chocolate and gray sands of Playa Esterillos, book a treatment in the four-room spa, take a dip in the two back-to-back swimming pools or explore the acres of wildlife-filled rainforest that surrounds the resort.
In the Area
Manuel Antonio National Park is worth a visit, but you should also check out Carara National Park, about 15 miles north of Jacó. Dense and wet, the park is home to plenty of animals, including one of the largest populations of wild scarlet macaws in the region. Alternatively, Pura Vida Gardens and Waterfalls is a privately owned 50-acre botanical refuge with nearly 600-foot waterfalls (said to be the tallest in the country). For less active pursuits, head about 30 minutes up the coast to Jacó — a fun (if somewhat seedy) surfer town with a bevy of bars, clubs and discos to get your ears ringing again. For a memorable meal on the hillside of Manuel Antonio, check out El Avión, built inside an old airplane that was shot down by the Sandinista army in Nicaragua. Meals can be hit-or-miss, but the drinks are excellent.
How to Get There
We didn't plan very far ahead of time, but were fortunate to book this hotel for four days and nights just before Easter. Upon arrival we were please to find that we had been upgraded to an ocean front bungalow, which was very well situated for privacy and had a great view of the Pacific. The shower area of the bathroom (huge) opens to a secluded walled garden. The room also has a safe, which I used regularly for passports, etc. Nice, well kept grounds; but best of all is the staff. Evelyn is the manager, who was very helpful, even helping to arrange a driver to meet us in San Jose at the airport. Roberto, one of the groundsmen, cut down a coconut for both my wife and I, trimmed an opened them, and we enjoyed them poolside. Friendly and helpful staff in the restaurant really added to the experience.
Above all, Maria, one of the servers in the restaurant, was a true treasure. We bantered in a mixture of English and Spanish, and she was just so great. Maria really exemplifies the true spirit of the Costa Rican people. We will remember her forever.
Some suggestions from our experience. The only store close by is a fairly long walk (I did it in the 87 F heat; not recommended) so stop prior to arrival for things that you want to have in your room beyond the normal provisions.
There are a few other hotels with dining just down the beach, which provide nice options. The dining at the hotel is certainly adequate, but we tend to like variety. Find my reviews separately. Overall this place and its people is one of the best tropical lodging experiences we have ever had.
Lovely property, great staff. Thousands of miles better than Sunset del Mar.
We arrived at the beginning of rainy season and initially stayed in a King size beachfront suite. Unfortunately it rained so hard that we had a huge leak in our bathroom and had to be moved for the second night. The good news is that we were moved to a villa with a plunge pool, but the bad news is that the room had two full size beds. If it wasn't for just one night, we would have stayed in the leaky room to have more bed space.
The food was okay, but not great, honestly. Desserts were super dry, and not fresh. Chocolate cake in a glass was a super disappointment.
That being said, they have a great selection of wine for Costa Rica, and the staff in the restaurant and bar is fantastic.
The property is pet friendly - our neighbors had a golden retriever who had the time of his life running around the beach. We will likely bring our dog next time.
We had a couple of spa treatments that were awesome, albeit super expensive.
All in all, we would and will come back here, and would recommend it to anyone else. Great for couples, kids, families, etc.
We started in La Fortuna in an AirBNB. Spent three days hiking the volcano, waterfalls, sky bridges, sloth farms, amazing local food at all the sodas and bakeries. Then we drove across to Alma del Pacifico to end our Spring Break relaxing. Beachfront room, hammocks overlooking the frequently empty beach, amazing buffet breakfast included, beautiful pool, periodic horseback excursions strolling down the beach, surf and yoga classes... it was heaven. The staff were fabulous. The room was meticulously cleaned daily. And the kids also loved trying to spot a lizard throughout the day. I wish we could have stayed longer!!! Thank you. ❤️
So private and secluded. Away from all the people and busyness of Jaco even during Spring break. A great place to relax and just enjoy the beauty of Costa Rica on what almost seems like a private beach. We were welcomed with a nice cold tropical fruit drink. This was everything I had hope for in a vacation-warm weather, beautiful scenery and right on the beach. This is not a swimming beach, great for surfing or just walking along the nice sandy beach for miles. I spent most of my time in the plunge pool looking out at the Ocean. 2 other full size pools and hot tub available also. Great breakfast included. I decided to indulge with the French Toast with bananas and chocolate chips (hey it's vacation right)
We had 6 days to spend in the Jaco area (this is about 25 miles south) and would have loved to stayed here longer than 1 day. It was exceptional in every area. I was nice to feel spoiled and pampered for at least one day, but just not in our budget to stay longer.
This rather idiosyncratic hotel worked perfectly for our last night in Costa Rica. The rooms are huge and extremely comfortable with lovely beach views. We loved the beach gardens, the fabulous warm sea and pools set in lovely gardens. Although quite expensive, the restaurant served very well prepared, fresh fish and side dishes.
We felt the hotel would be especially good for families.