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Playa Matapalo, Matapalo 60602 Costa Rica
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Traveller (9675)
Room & Suite (1621)
Videos (3)
Travel safe during COVID-19
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What you can expect during your stay
  • All linens sanitised in high-temperature wash
  • Face masks required for guests in public areas
  • Face masks required for staff in public areas
  • Floors marked for social distancing
  • Hand sanitiser available to guests & staff
  • Stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
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Updated 21/11/10 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
A note from Hotel Riu Guanacaste
Updated 21/11/10 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.


The 24h All Inclusive Hotel Riu Guanacaste opens all year round and is located directly on the beautiful, fine-sandy Matapalo beach, in the Playas del Coco region, next to the Riu Palace Costa Rica. The location is ideal because of its proximity to Daniel Oduber Airport LIR (33 km) and Playa del Coco (18km) and invites you to explore the area. The hotel has 701 cosily furnished rooms with free Wi-Fi and offers many amenities. Relax in the Renova Spa, or get fit at the gym or on the tennis courts. 3 outdoor pools, 1 children's pool. For the youngest guests, there is the RiuLand Kids Club (for children from 4 to 7 years & 8 to 12 years old) and for adults, day and evening entertainment, as well as the Pacha Discotheque. For lovers of gastronomy, we offer live cooking stations at our main restaurant, various specialty restaurants with Asian and Italian cuisine, gourmet restaurant, Steakhouse, and 5 bars.
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Property amenities
Free parking
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room
Bar / lounge
Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly)
Hot bath
Pool / beach towels
Outdoor pool
Breakfast available
Breakfast buffet
Snack bar
Swimup bar
Poolside bar
Tennis court
Entertainment staff
Evening entertainment
Table tennis
Nightclub / DJ
Kids club
Kids' outdoor play equipment
Business Centre with Internet Access
Conference facilities
Banquet room
Meeting rooms
Couples massage
Facial treatments
Foot massage
Full body massage
Head massage
24-hour security
Baggage storage
Currency exchange
Gift shop
Sun loungers / beach chairs
24-hour front desk
Dry cleaning
Laundry service
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Room features
Air conditioning
Private balcony
Flatscreen TV
Room types
Ocean view
Family rooms
Good to know
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Hotel links
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9115Reviews2046Q+A100Room tips
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Popular mentions
Amy C wrote a review 18 May
1 contribution4 helpful votes
We booked this hotel because we wanted to visit Costa Rica and our holiday was more about the exploring rather than the hotel. We were pleasenty surprised!! Everyone was so friendly. This includes other guests aswell as staff! The cocktails and mocktails were great! Not mass produced rubbish like the normal all inclusive resorts. There was plenty of choice at dinner and the food was nice. One of the waiters decorated our table with flowers and swans as he got to know us throughout our holiday. They also taught us some Spanish every day at dinner. The room was a bit outdated but nothing you can't live with. Bathroom was spacious and had 2 sinks. The neon/white parties were really fun as well as the pool foam parties. The animation team work really hard to keep guests entertained! Me and my sister both had a great stay here and would definitely stay again! Special shout out to: Ricardo, Brian, Maria, Carlos (animation) Jeronimo, Filip (photogrohy)
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Date of stay: April 2022Trip type: Travelled
Room Tip: Bring plenty of suncream as its expensive in the shop!
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2 Helpful votes
Ravi B. wrote a review May 2021
Las Vegas, Nevada23 contributions28 helpful votes
Hotel's Favourite
Was planning to go to Spain, but Covid restrictions would not allow tourism from the United States at this time. Found this all-inclusive on the beach in the Papagayo Gulf of Costa Rica (not too far from Coco Beach (where Tiger Woods lives)) and near Culebra Bay, where Secrets, Andaz, and the Four Seasons are located. I think because Costa Rica is recovering from Covid lockdowns and restrictions, the hotel was not even at half capacity, which was nice. Not all the a la carte restaurants are open every night, but very helpful and attentive staff, like Supervisor Leiby, were there to make sure we always got a table, to make sure the table was decorated before we arrived, and was accommodating enough to leave a bottle of red wine on the table and replace it as many times as needed throughout the meal. Even the buffet was very comprehensive, with grill stations, and awesome local cuisine. The room lacked little things like hair conditioner or hand lotion bottles, but other than that, everything was top notch. The small pillows were not ideal either, but we managed to sleep well regardless. Each night during dinner, a musician would play in the courtyard, every night following dinner we were treated to a Las Vegas - type show with dancing and music. And following each show, was a solo musician for about an hour. It was a nice was to wind down after a day of fishing, snorkeling, kayaking, paddle-boarding, boating to other beaches, smoking Cuban cigars on the beach, and just chilling with a mixed drink (like a Mono Susio - Dirty Monkey) under a tree on a lounge chair with periodic dips into the warm water of the Pacific (with almost no waves). The price was amazing as well. It was less than $150 for two people, per day, all inclusive, including alcoholic drinks (not just bear and pina coladas). You cannot beat this deal. Costa Rica does require a travel insurance, but we found a company called Trawick, and we were able get insured for $30 per person for the week. This complied with Costa Rica's requirements. The US required us to get a negative Covid antigen test 3 days before coming back, but since we booked this trip through Apple Vacations, the testing was free of charge.
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Date of stay: May 2021
Sleep Quality
Room Tip: I asked for an ocean view and got it without paying extra.
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7 Helpful votes
Larry B wrote a review 16 May
Ontario, Canada3 contributions2 helpful votes
Great week for my daughters wedding. We booked a suite for the week and decided to stay a second week. When we checked in our package said our suite number until May 23 (we only booked suite until May 16) . We liked the suite so much, we went to the desk to ask them to upgrade us for the second week and we would pay the difference. They told us that we didn't need to that we were registered in the suite until the 23rd. (We had proof on our registration package) We went down to say goodbye to the other wedding attendees and then went to lunch (and the buffet was 1/4 of its normal size because of the checkouts) When we got to our room after lunch there was a note to see manager. Well guess what, we had to move even though we wanted to pay for the upgrade. When we made the request Tuesday there were suites available and could paid and stayed but they said we were fine and could stay where we were and enjoy. I guess they got more bookings for the suites and so guess what....we got pushed around. The manager said to go ahead and write a bad review....he didn't care.
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Date of stay: May 2022Trip type: Travelled
1 Helpful vote
Response from RIU Hotels and Resorts, Owner at Hotel Riu Guanacaste
Responded 2 days ago
Dear Larry and Lyn, It is unfortunate your time with us was less than perfect. We are always looking into feedback to continue to better our establishment. It is unforeseen that a staff member would not be attentive. By no means our much-cared guests are treated in the described manner. We are truly sorry to read you left the resort thinking otherwise. We wish to explain that when reservations are made by a third company, it is the booking channel who has charged and arranged the reservation, unfortunately, we cannot reply on their behalf. We kindly recommend to get in touch with your booking channel. We apologize if this was not your case. In case of having booked directly through Riu and you wish to place a formal complaint, you can do it at: complaints@riu.com Sincerely, Hotel Riu Guanacaste Online Reputation Manager
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eileen b wrote a review 16 May
Franklin Lakes, New Jersey24 contributions11 helpful votes
I have never seen a hotel be so frugal with towels. Trust me, I would not want to keep your sandpaper towels. Evening entertainment were all in Spanish (we do not speak Spanish). Only one employee went out of her way to help us. Tracy at the desk in the Lobby is an exceptional employee. Riu sent a notice saying we have free massages. After back and forth, I ended up with no massage. Bring your own hair dryer. One in the room is very old and doesn't dry very quickly. Notices should be shared with the various events they are providing. Hotel could and should provide better communication.
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Review collected in partnership with riu.com
Date of stay: May 2022
Sleep Quality
Elizabeth R wrote a review 10 May
New York2 contributions2 helpful votes
Our trip was amazing, the service was excellent in all areas. From housekeeping to technical support (Alejandro). Restaurant employees, humble and really kind. Went zip lining at the town of Tamarindo. Another fabulous experience.
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Date of stay: April 2022
2 Helpful votes
US$182 - US$238 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Costa RicaProvince of GuanacasteMatapalo
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Frequently Asked Questions about Hotel Riu Guanacaste
Which popular attractions are close to Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Nearby attractions include Monkey's Bar & Restaurant (0.9 km), Playas del coco (6.0 km), and Playa Danta (6.8 km).
What are some of the property amenities at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include a swimup bar, a pool, and an on-site restaurant.
Which room amenities are available at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Top room amenities include a minibar, air conditioning, and a flat screen TV.
What food & drink options are available at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Guests can enjoy a swimup bar, an on-site restaurant, and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Conveniently located restaurants include Sentido Norte Restaurant, Guayoyo Coffee House, and Maracuya Beach Front.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Yes, guests have access to a pool and a fitness centre during their stay.
Are any cleaning services offered at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
Yes, dry cleaning and laundry service are offered to guests.
Does Hotel Riu Guanacaste offer any business services?
Yes, it conveniently offers a business centre, meeting rooms, and a banquet room.
Which languages are spoken by the staff at Hotel Riu Guanacaste?
The staff speaks multiple languages, including English and Spanish.
Does Hotel Riu Guanacaste have any great views?
Yes, guests often enjoy the ocean view available here.