Hotel Moana is located in Mal País on the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. With secluded white sand beaches and untouched natural beauty, Mal País makes for the perfect vacation spot this summer.
Hotel Moana is one of our favorite superior hotels in the region, and we took the opportunity to speak with the current hotel manager, Bruno Demarco Quiroz about the hotel and visiting the stunning area of Mal País.
Bruno first came to Costa Rica in late 2012 and soon after he began working at Hotel Moana. All of his jobs before he became the manager were related to customer service and sales and he has used these skills to ensure that Hotel Moana remains at the top of its industry in Costa Rica and has continued to improve under Bruno’s guidance. Since November 2013, Bruno has been the manager of the hotel and before we began the interview he stated that he loves his job and the daily tasks as, “there is no better customer than one who is on vacation!”
♦ What makes Hotel Moana different from others in Mal País and Costa Rica?
We pay a lot of attention to the small details that can make the guest experience transform from normal or good to excellent, making sure that your stay at Hotel Moana is the best possible and unforgettable. Our service is not only to host guests, but we provide them with assistance in all of their needs during their stay whether that’s recommending activities or transfers to and from the highlights of Mal País or San José. We can also recommend the best restaurants in the town as well as the most beautiful beaches and places to visit in the area and use all of our knowledge to improve the overall customer experience. At Hotel Moana, we will always work with whatever is in our power to accomplish the task and sometimes this involves us going beyond what is in our power to get what the guest may need. If the guest wants we can take care of everything they need, so that they almost only need to turn up to take their flight to San José and we do the rest.
♦ Hotel Moana takes its environmental responsibilities very seriously. How do you make your hotel sustainable?
We live in the midst of nature, in the middle of the jungle. Guests enjoy their stay in the same environment so it is very important for us to take care of it. We separate our organic and inorganic hotel waste, we don’t pour hazardous liquids or papers down the drains, and we ask our guests to do the same. While building the hotel the flora around was barely touched, so those guests staying with us may experience staying alongside different animals of Costa Rica such as iguanas, squirrels, monkeys, raccoon and coatis among many others.
♦ How do you feel luxury accommodation compliments the Mal País experience?
It’s an excellent combination of luxurious rooms, in an environment that is so natural and preserved, where the only noise you can sense is the waves of the Pacific Ocean or the branches of trees where squirrels and monkeys jump from on to another. We live like this but when it’s time to relax, only a door separates us from a luxury room then the guest has everything, luxury accommodation with the joys of nature.
♦ What is your stand-out Mal País memory?
It’s difficult to choose my best memory, but there is something about Mal País that the day I am no longer here, I know is going to be my best memory. The sunsets of Mal País. Moana is made even more spectacular because of the amazing views we have from our Papaya Lounge restaurant and is located at one of the highest points of the hotel. There they serve breakfast to our guests and open up to the public from 5PM where those who come, whether or not they are staying at our hotel, are amazed by the variety of colors from the sunset and the extensive view that the location of Papaya Lounge provides.
♦ What is the one activity or site you would recommend to people staying at your hotel?
Related to my previous answer about going up to the restaurant, you should order a refreshing mojito and simply relax in one of our chairs enjoying the sunset! Likewise, there are a number of options that travelers who visit us can choose from and it very much depends on the number of days they are staying and their individual tastes and interests. We always recommend horseback riding along the beach for those that normally enjoy walking along it or for those wanting a bit more of an adrenaline rush, surfing and exploring the forest canopy by zip-lining through it are great options. There is another activity that I always recommend to guests and that is a visit to Tortuga Island. With boats leaving from Montezuma you can take the boat to this stunning island and go snorkeling; exploring the marine life and fish of all colors, octopus, manta rays, turtles and even sharks! Having enjoyed a full day in this paradise, you return back to the mainland and arrive in Mal País just in time to relax in the Papaya Lounge with a drink and enjoy watching the sunset to bring a fantastic, activity filled day to an end.
♦ What advice would you give to travelers coming to Mal País?
We receive a lot of people that stay for one, two or three nights and in some cases between 10 nights and 2 weeks. The advice that we can give to guests varies according to the duration of their stay. We believe it is best take the day of arrival to relax, enjoy the environment in which our hotel is located and organize activities for the coming days. Sometimes people come to disconnect from their daily routine and choose to enjoy the pool area while others like to leave the hotel and go to the beach or arrange an excursion out of the hotel. A variety of activities depending on what the guest is looking for, beach walks, surfing, and fishing trips or boat rides, zip-lining through the forest and much more.
♦ What do you see for the future of Hotel Moana and for tourism in Mal País and Costa Rica in general?
We believe that both the Costa Rica tourism and the area of Mal País and Santa Teresa have continued to develop and will grow in the coming years. As a hotel we work to help accompany this growth while maintaining the level of service that we have always provided.
♦ What is your most important task as the owner or representative of Hotel Moana?
I make sure that everything is in place and the way it should be, paying attention to every little detail that makes the difference in our service. It may seem simply but applying it is a very hard task although, seeing the positive results makes you realize that it is very much worth all the effort.