Double Duty Daddy

Costa Rica Trip Review – Andaz Papagayo

DD Mommy and I recently visited the Andaz Peninsula Papagayo in Costa Rica as many of you know who follow me on social media. Last year we went to Paris and Amsterdam for our 4 year wedding anniversary but this year we wanted relaxation and seclusion.

Day or Night, the lobby is aesthetically pleasing

Day or Night, the lobby is aesthetically pleasing

I want to review this trip for you now since it’s fresh on my mind. The main purpose for choosing Costa Rica was the Andaz Peninsula Papagayo hotel since we could get it for FREE (will explain below) and to mark off another country visited off our list. Andaz properties are Hyatt’s contemporary boutique line of hotels and I absolutely love them.

View from the lobby

View from the lobby

Room Cost

Rooms were going for $500 a night (plus a $60 nightly resort fee) or 15,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points per night and no resort fee. Since we both have the Chase Hyatt Card that comes with a free night (Category 1-4) each year after paying $75 annual fee, we opted to use each of our free nights for a total of 2 nights. Essentially, that’s 2 nights hotel for $150 at a hotel with rates starting at $500 per night for a standard room. To pay for the 3rd night, we transferred 15,000 Chase UR points to Hyatt to complete our 3 nights. Out of pocket cost for 3 nights: $0.

The free nights and points usage only get you a standard room but I began emailing the general manager 6 months ago telling him about our special anniversary trip to his property. He couldn’t commit to anything more than a standard room. Until the day before arriving I received an email from the GM saying he would accommodate us with a 3rd floor room (highest floor at the resort) with a view. Score! I was thrilled and content.

When we arrived to Andaz Papagayo from the airport transfer, the friendly front desk folks gave us an option which caught me by surprise. They asked whether I wanted our 3rd floor room with a view which was ready or the Andaz suite which wasn’t yet clean since someone had checked out late. Out of the 153 rooms available, only 21 are suites. They noted our anniversary as being the reason why they went ahead and applied that courtesy offer and I happily accepted. What I didn’t know is how massive and gorgeous the suite was! Almost 1,200 square feet of pure bliss! Larger than our apartment in Midtown Miami where we spent 4 years. I was elated and appreciative. I never take freebies or upgrades for granted since I know they are a privilege NOT a right. Moral of the story: Email a hotel GM if visiting their hotel for a very special occasion. You may just get a nice little upgrade.  🙂

Suite cost for 3 nights = $2,889.98! We spent $0 out of pocket.

Suite cost for 3 nights = $2,889.98! We spent $0 out of pocket.

 

Living Room Floor to Ceiling Windows

Living Room Floor to Ceiling Windows

Living room could fit a family of 4 easily.

Living room could fit a family of 4 easily.

Huge bathroom

Huge bathroom

Rain shower with frosted glass. You could see monkeys on trees while showering! So cool!

Rain shower with frosted glass. You could see monkeys on trees while showering! So cool!

IMG_0005

Balcony with dimmed light lantern

Getting There

We flew from Miami on American MIA-Liberia nonstop. I booked two one-ways instead of roundtrip because Avios was only showing MIA-LIR available for 7,500 points per person and the return was not available. The return flight wasn’t a great deal at all. I coughed up 37,500 AA miles per person. That absolutely killed me but there was no saver awards showing up for the usual 17,500 miles so I booked a standard award for 37,500. OUCH!

As we got closer, I saw 1 seat in business class for 25,000 which was 12,500 less than 1 standard coach award ticket so I called AA and got 1 of us booked into business class for the return flight and got 12,500 miles back too. So I upgraded, paid less and got miles back. Didn’t matter though because I gave up my business class seat to a solo traveler who happily obliged to give up his coach seat so I could sit next to DD Mommy. Win-Win!

Other Thoughts

Service was incredible. Staff is genuinely there to help and I loved engaging most of the staff members who work tirelessly in conversation to find out more about them. Truly some remarkable individuals work at the Andaz Papagayo. The pools never felt crowded and as we relaxed on a lounge chair or took a dip in the pool, we witnessed monkeys swinging from the trees as close as 10 yards from us. That was DD Mommy’s favorite aspect of the trip (besides the suite of course!). The food was great yet expensive so be prepared for sticker shock. But if you book a trip to Andaz Papagayo with miles/points, the food is the only expense you have to worry about unless you plan on exploring the surrounding area and going zip-lining, hiking, golfing or visiting waterfalls.

IMG_0054-2

1 of 4 pools, this one is the adult pool

View at breakfast

View at breakfast

Overall

Our trip to Andaz Papagayo in the Guanacaste Province of Costa Rica was just what we needed. Relaxation and a chance to get away from it all. I’ll probably visit again when G&O are a little bigger as I think the resort lends itself to being the perfect place for families with post-toddler-aged children or couples.

 

Like this Article? Share it!

Leave A Response