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Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

  1. How do I get to Arenas Del Mar?
  2. Is Arenas Del Mar for me?
  3. What to bring?
  4. Arenas Del Mar check in and check out times
  5. Can everything be paid in US dollars or do I need local currency?
  6. Am I allowed to smoke on the hotel premises?

Resort Facilities

  1. What are the suites and rooms like?
  2. Is the beach safe for swimming?
  3. Is Arenas Del Mar suitable for children?
  4. Is there a gym at the hotel?
  5. Is there a Tennis Court at the hotel?
  6. Is there a Golf course near the hotel?

Health & Weather

  1. Climate & Weather
  2. What will the weather be like at Arenas Del Mar?
  3. Health Concerns and Medical Emergencies
  4. Tropical Diseases
  5. Recommended Vaccines for Costa Rica
  6. What about bugs and insect repellant?

Nature, Leisure & Activities

  1. Manuel Antonio National Park
  2. Carara Biological Reserve
  3. What tours and activities are available at Arenas Del Mar?
  4. Is there any sport fishing available near Arenas Del Mar?
  5. Are there any good surf spots near Arenas Del Mar?
  6. What else is there to see in Costa Rica?
  7. Planning your Honeymoon or a Romantic Escape?
  8. Planning a Wellness Retreat?
  9. Planning a Family Vacation?
  10. Are there other dining options in the area?

Costa Rican Facts

  1. Costa Rican Facts
  2. What does Pura Vida mean?

Additional Information

  1. Who manages Arenas Del Mar?
  2. Who is Cayuga Sustainable Hospitality?
  3. Do you recommend any other hotels in Costa Rica?
  4. What is the CST and how can I learn more about it?

GENERAL QUESTIONS

Is Arenas Del Mar for me?
Arenas Del Mar is an elegant beach and nature resort that seeks to combine the highest levels of service and comfort with business practices that are both sustainable and environmentally friendly. If you enjoy being surrounded by nature and participating in outdoor activities, but also enjoy returning to a comfortable and well appointed room to relax with a glass of wine and a gourmet meal, then Arenas Del Mar is for you!

What to bring?
The resort’s dress code is informal. Guests are encouraged to bring lightweight, casual clothing, sunscreen, a bathing suit, sturdy shoes or hiking boots for activities and nature hikes. Don’t worry about bringing extra clothing, since the lodge offers laundry service.

Arenas Del Mar check in and check out times
Check in begins at 3:00 p.m. If you should arrive earlier at Arenas Del Mar, we will do everything possible to have your room ready. However, if you should have to wait for your room to be ready do not waste any time: go ahead and take a refreshing swim in our pool or the beach or enjoy one of our many fascinating tours.

Check out hour is 11:00 a.m. If you would like to leave later in the day, please consult the Front Desk to make appropriate arrangements, and if possible, we will be happy to accommodate you.

Can everything be paid in US dollars or do I need local currency?
Costa Rica’s currency is called the Colon. One US dollar is approximately 510 Costa Rica Colones (Jan. 2012). However, while staying at Arenas Del Mar, cash will not be necessary. All your expenses can be charged to your room and when you check out, we will accept US dollars, Colones and/or all major credit cards.

When going on tours or visiting the town of Quepos, carrying one, five and ten US dollar bills would definitely be recommended as well as some local currency. Most businesses and restaurants accept US dollars. Euros and other currencies are not commonly accepted in Costa Rica. We will gladly exchange your US dollars for Colones at the Front Desk.

Am I allowed to smoke on the hotel premises?
Costa Rica has passed very strict non-smoking legislation. It is prohibited to smoke in public places. Please beware that you are not going to be able to smoke on our premises during your stay. Thank you for understanding.

RESORT FACILITIES

Is the beach safe for swimming?
Costa Rica’s beaches are renowned for their beauty, the temperature of the water (85F/29ºC degrees year round!) and their variety of wave activity. In Manuel Antonio one can find beaches that look like lakes with no waves. In other areas of the beaches, there are excellent waves for body and board surfing, as well as ocean kayaking. As in all beaches, it is best to consult daily about any possible riptides and the size of the waves before swimming.

Is Arenas Del Mar suitable for children?
Absolutely! Arenas Del Mar is a great family destination and a wonderful opportunity for families to spend quality time together. Arenas Del Mar is Manuel Antonio’s only luxury resort with direct access to two spectacular beaches; it also features two refreshing swimming pools. There are many interesting activities offered in the area for children, especially for years 6 and older, such as butterfly gardens, guided tours on interpretive trails into the rain forest, canopy tours and boat excursions.

Is there a gym at the hotel?
Although our resort does not offer a gym, we can schedule an outdoors power workout session during the morning, certain days of the week, where both guests and “exercise junkies” from our staff can connect! Guests may also jog safely along our property’s walking trails, uphill, downhill or along Playitas Beach, right in front of our hotel. We promise you will have a great exercise experience at Arenas del Mar.

Is there a Tennis Court at the hotel?
We are surrounded by rainforest and beaches. Arenas del Mar does not offer a tennis court; nonetheless, we can arrange transportation to a nearby tennis court located atTennis Club Quepos, offering a practice wall and 2 regular sized tennis courts. We would be happy to assist you with your reservations.

Is there a Golf course near the hotel?
The closest golf course is located at Los Suenos Marriott Golf & Marina Resort, about an hour’s drive from Arenas del Mar:“Nestled alongside an exotic rainforest with breathtaking ocean views, the 18-hole, par-72 championship La Iguana golf course offers not only a challenging Ted Robinson-designed layout but also a spectacular gallery featuring friendly monkeys and brightly hued macaws”. Our staff would be happy to assist you with tee times, reservations and private transportation.

HEALTH & WEATHER

Climate & Weather
Since we are located right in the tropics, and close to the Equator, Costa Rica is considered a Rainforest and/or a Very Humid Tropical Forest country. It has two well defined seasons: dry season from December to April and Rainy Season from May to November. July and August are typically wet months all over Costa Rica however, the rain, especially on the Pacific coast, occurs during the afternoon or evening. Warm temperatures are characteristic throughout the year.

We experience a short mid-year mini-dry season towards the end of July and beginning of August when rainfall decreases significantly for three or four weeks especially in the northern Pacific, and the rainiest months will be spotted by September and October especially to the south Pacific of the country. The beaches and lowlands experience high temperatures in the low-eighties to nineties and low temperatures in the high-sixties to mid seventies.

First–time visitors to Costa Rica often neglect to bring a warm jacket with them after reading about the climates of the coastal regions and the Central Valley. A medium–weight fleece jacket is ideal for the cool San José nights.

WHAT WILL THE WEATHER BE LIKE AT ARENAS DEL MAR?

TEMPERATURE & RAINFALL CHART FOR MANUEL ANTONIO

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Avg. Max. Temp. (F) 87 87 89 89 89 87 87 86 86 86 86 86
Avg. Min. Temp 69 69 71 71 71 71 69 69 71 71 71 69
Avg. Rainfall (inches) 2,8 1,4 2,5 6,6 15,4 17 18 18,8 20,8 25,4 15,3 6,7

Health Concerns and Medical Emergencies
There is a hospital about 10 minutes from the hotel, right next to the airport in Quepos. It is the largest National Hospital outside the Central Valley. Several doctors and pharmacies are on call in Quepos and Manuel Antonio for minor health related problems. San José is just a 25 minute flight away and offers excellent state of the art hospitals and treatments by doctors often educated in North America or Europe.

Tropical Diseases
No immunizations, shots, inoculations or vaccinations are required to enter the country. The only notable disease problem reported in some locations of the country in the last few years is occasional localized dengue fever (spread by mosquitoes in certain urbanized locations with stagnant water and a history of the disease). However, it would be wise to check with your personal physician for individual recommendations. Some physicians prefer for their patients to obtain typhoid immunizations and persons who plan to visit Caribbean coastal areas are advised to take malaria pills. Up–to–date recommendations on such preventive measures are issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC office issues health advisories via FAX for travel throughout the world.

Recommended Vaccines for Costa Rica

  • Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG).
  • Hepatitis B if you are exposed to blood (for example, health–care workers), have sexual contact with the local population, stay longer than 6 months, or are undergoing various medical treatments. The Hepatitis B vaccine is now recommended for all infants and for children ages 11 and 12 who did not receive it as infants.
  • Rabies if you are in contact to wild or domestic animals through your work or recreation.
  • Typhoid particularly if you are visiting other developing countries in this region.

What about bugs and insect repellant?
Depending on the time of year or hour of the day, there might be periods where mosquitoes are bothersome at Arenas Del Mar especially after periods of extended rains. Usually, mosquitoes are only active between 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. during sundown. The bedrooms have fans if you prefer the local climate, but are also air–conditioned and can be closed completely to protect you from possible bugs. Past visitors to Arenas Del Mar have found that mosquitoes are seldom bothersome.

It is a good idea to bring some insect repellant, especially for the hikes and activities in the nearby rainforest and National Park. Any good brand of insect repellent that works for you where you live will also works in Costa Rica. Insect repellant is also sold at theTiendita. We recommend that, when possible, rely on non aerosol cans that contain less toxic ingredients.

NATURE, LEISURE & ACTIVITIES

Manuel Antonio National Park
You are most likely to see the world famous Manuel Antonio National Park from your hotel room or while having breakfast at the Mirador restaurant. Actually, the Pacific Ocean that borders Arenas Del Mar is part of the National Park, and thus Arenas Del Mar is considered a park and beach–front resort. Manuel Antonio is a spectacular National Park that consists of tropical jungles, rainforest, paradise–like beaches, mangroves and an estuary. Guided tours by our excellent community guides often yield many sightings of monkeys, sloth, toucans, crocodiles, armadillos, and many other mammals. Manuel Antonio is famous for its high concentration of fauna and varied environment.

The park expands 680 hectares (1,680 acres). It is recommended to visit the park with a guide who has a trained eye and the necessary equipment required to spot the hundreds of animals and bird species that inhabit the park. But don’t forget your bathing suit. Inside the park you will find some of Costa Rica’s most beautiful and safe swimming beaches. Isla Mogote and 11 other islands offshore provide refuge for marine birds. Park rangers only allow 600 visitors to enter the park on a daily basis, so come early (as you are also more likely to spot animals in the morning).

The park is closed on Monday but open Tuesday to Sunday from 8:00 to 4:00 year round. Park entrance fee is $10 per person.

Carara Biological Reserve
The Carara Biological Reserve is located about an hour’s drive north of Arenas Del Marand is a world renowned nesting ground for scarlet macaws. It has hiking trails open to visitors. The macaws migrate daily, spending the days in the park and the nights in the coastal mangroves. It is best to observe them in the early morning or around sunset, but a good guide is most likely to find them for you during the day. Among other wildlife you might see here are crocodiles, coatimundis, armadillos, tapirs, pacas, peccaries, river otters, kinkajous and of course hundreds of species of birds. The Reserve is open daily from 8:00 to 4:00. Admission is $6 per person.

Is there any sport fishing available near Arenas Del Mar?
The waters off Quepos on the Costa Rican central Pacific coast are world famous for bill fishing. Arenas Del Mar only supports certified sport fishing operations that follow catch and release practices. We can recommend companies and captains upon request.

Are there any good surf spots near Arenas Del Mar?
Directly below Arenas Del Mar is Espadilla Beach, well–known as a venue for International Surfing Competitions and for its mid–sized tight break.

What else is there to see in Costa Rica?
A stay at Arenas Del Mar in Manuel Antonio is certainly one of the highlights of a visit to Costa Rica. However, there are many other popular destinations that are worth a visit. Depending on your budget and time available for travel, we recommend you visit some of the country’s active volcanoes (Arenal, Poás, Irazú, Rincón de la Vieja) and the world famous cloud forest reserve at Monteverde. For a very natural, but more rustic experience, a trip down south to the Osa Peninsula is recommended. Costa Rica’s Caribbean coast also offers a great variety of sights from the giant turtle nesting beaches in Tortuguero in the north to the laid back beach environment further south. If you have any questions on where to go and what to do, please e–mail us toinfo@arenasdelmar.com.

Planning your Honeymoon or a Romantic Escape?
The amazing beaches and natural scenarios, plus the warmth of the local people and the friendly weather are just a handful of distinctive features that make Costa Rica one of the most romantic destinations in the world. Visit us at Unique Honeymoon Destinations and let us plan the honeymoon of your dreams.

Planning a Wellness Retreat?
Wellness is all around in Costa Rica: whether on deserted beaches, with the song of invisible creatures of the night or on dark-green jungles. Visit us at Unique Wellness Destinations and let us take you on that journey.

Planning a Family Vacation?
Whether you’re coming with your spouse and the children (kids) or adding grandma and grandpa, bringing your sister and her family, or planning a full family reunion Costa Rica is the perfect place to bond with your family and create lasting fun filled memories. We invite you to explore these special destinations and plan a memorable family vacation. Visit us here and let us plan the most fun family trip.

Are there other dining options in the area?
We are sure you will love the food at Arenas del Mar, but at the same time, we invite you to explore the numerous local restaurants in Manuel Antonio and Quepos. The taxi fare from our resort to most restaurants in Manuel Antonio runs around $12 each way.

COSTA RICAN FACTS

  • The capital of Costa Rica is San José located in the Central Valley.
  • The currency used is the Colón.
  • Costa Rica borders Panama to the south and Nicaragua to the north.
  • The population is about 4 million inhabitants.
  • There are 7 provinces, 81 counties and 463 districts.
  • Costa Rica covers about 51,000 km2.
  • 38% of the country is in protected areas or National Parks.
  • Costa Rica has no army, choosing to use these funds for education and culture.
  • The national flower is an orchid called Guaria Morada(Guarianthe skinneri).
  • The national tree is the Guanacaste(Enterolobium cyclocarpum).
  • The national bird is the Yigüirro (Turdus grayi).

What does Pura Vida mean?
Pura Vida (POO-rah VEE-dah), used by Costa Ricans since 1956, literally translated means “Pure Life.” Contextually, it means “full of life,” “purified life,” “this is living!” “going great” It is used as a greeting, a farewell and to express satisfaction.

The phrase has become widely known in the United States and Europe. Some foreigners view the phrase as an expression of a leisurely lifestyle, of disregard for time and wanton friendliness. However, Costa Ricans use the phrase to express a philosophy of strong community, perseverance, good spirits, enjoying life slowly, celebrating good fortune, whether small or large.

Pura Vida also means “I am doing alright”, “I am doing perfect” and “thank you”.

Expats who adopt the expression properly get a big smile in return. It is an acknowledgment of the Costa Rican attitude towards life.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Who owns and operates Arenas Del Mar?
Arenas Del Mar is managed by Cayuga Sustainable Hospitality, a Costa Rica based hospitality management company that develops and manages eco-lodges, sustainable resorts and green hotels in Latin American and the Caribbean. All Cayuga properties are certified or in the process of being certified for their sustainable practices, nature conservation and the improvement of the local communities where they are located. For more details please visit Cayuga.

Who is Cayuga Sustainable Hospitality?
Cayuga Sustainable Hospitality is a Costa Rica based hospitality management company that develops and manages ecolodges, sustainable resorts and green hotels in Latin American and the Caribbean. All Cayuga properties are certified or in the process of being certified for their sustainable practices, nature conservation and the improvement of the local communities where they are located. To learn more about what we do, why we are unique and how we can help you please click here.

What is the CST and how can I learn more about it?
The CST is a national certification program designed by the Tourist Board (ICT) to classify hotels and resorts in Costa Rica based on their sustainable practices, policies and actions that protect the environment and benefit the local culture, history and local communities. Please visit our Sustainability section to learn more about Sustainable Tourism, our practices and the CST.