We stayed at this hotel for 5 nights after our Caravan tour. We had difficulty finding much information/reviews while researching the area before departure, so felt I should post a report. We loved what we saw on the Pelican website – small, quiet – exactly what we were looking for, and the website is accurate. However, what doesn’t show is the "tiredness" of this establishment. We did grow to love the place, but our first look set us back a bit, and we’re pretty seasoned travellers. Rooms were smaller and more "rustic" than we’d anticipated .
the Pelican is close to Jaco, Quepos and Manuel Antonio. Tours can be arranged at the hotel. Julia, the manager, arranged our transfer from/to San Jose with Kevin’s Transfer’s – we were pleased with the service and cost ($130 one way for a van for four of us).
Negatives: We had a double and a single bed in the room – double was fine, but the single was like sleeping on a slightly padded concrete slab. Not a big issue, but although sheets were clean, mine were blue and showed stains – a bit off-putting, and they weren’t changed until the fifth night -again, not an issue or we would have spoken up, but in a hot climate could be an issue for some. I expected a change after three nights. The rooms need a good pressure washing – they were mopped daily, but it was a lick-and-a-promise cleaning. The door handle on the inside of the bathroom door came off in my hand – rusted through. The shower door wouldn’t close tightly enough to latch it.
The pool looked horrid, but we discovered mainly because of the old, dark tiles lining it. There were some cracks in the concrete above the tiles as well, and the deck and pool area was never swept or cleaned up of leaves, etc. while we were there. Glasses or anything else left by guests in the area never seemed to be picked up by staff either.
Positives: Its small, quiet, peaceful, and it grew on us. We saw the pool cleaned and the ph checked frequently while we were there, and the water appeared cleaner than our public pool at home once we were in it. There were four pegs on the wall for hanging clothes, and shelving for the rest – certainly adequate. There was a long wall mirror in the room. Lighting in the room wasn’t bad, and was very good in the bathroom. We were provided two bath towels and two hand towels daily. The shower temperature andwater supply was good. The restaurant was fabulous – we had no desire to eat elsewhere during our five days. Prices were very good – average entree was $8.00 – $10.00, beer, smoothies, wonderful lemonade $2.50. The menu included fish, beef, chicken, pasta, hamburgers, sandwiches, salads, desserts. The food was wonderfully prepared and presented. There were many non-guest patrons at the restaurant. The included continental breakfast was good – toast, fruit, juice, coffee. We did have the Sunday breakfast buffet – very good – the owner’s homemade sausage was incredible! They do offer specials throughout the week as well. We did stroll down the road behind the hotel looking at homes along the way. There is a small convenience store not far, and a great pizza restaurant where we had lunch one day – a pleasant change. The pool is small, but delightful after long beach walks. The hammock area between the pool and beach was also enticing for lazy afternoon naps. The staff were excellent, from the waiters who knew us by name after the second day to the office staff who checked us out – service was prompt, efficient and friendly. The beach here is wonderful – long, wide, fine hard-packed sand with surf thundering all the time. There are serious riptides, so swimming can be dangerous. We did see surfers just off shore. We spent a lot of time walking the beach and collecting shells. There is a lot of foot traffice on the beach from neighboring residents and their dogs, as well as a few cars, ATVs, motorbikes, bicycles passing by, but none were ever an annoyance. sunsets can be incredible – colors and clouds reflecting on the wet sand.
I would recommend the Pelican, just be prepared for something a bit more "rustic" than depicted on the website – we would certainly return!