Welcome back to another episode about Costa Rica!
This time, I’ll be telling you about Planet Hollywood, the all-inclusive resort where I stayed for two whole weeks in Costa Rica.
There are many reviews online about every resort and experience, and sometimes you can’t tell if they’re reliable or not, so I went to experience Planet Hollywood and Riu Palace Costa Rica so that I could give you my recommendations as a travel agent for when you decide to visit Costa Rica.
This is what you need to know:
[01:43] Vacation like a star.
This is Planet Hollywood’s motto, and it started the moment I stepped out of the vehicle and on to the red carpet.
Yes. The red carpet.
Planet Hollywood is themed after Hollywood and they treat you like a star, starting with the red carpet, the flashing lights, the staff cheering for you all the way to the end of the red carpet where a cocktail is waiting just for you.
I recorded this experience on my Instagram, so you don’t have to imagine it.
When you fly in to Liberia airport, you have a 35-40 minute drive to get to the resort.
Planet Hollywood is an all-inclusive resort on a black-sand beach, so you are guaranteed to have amazing views.
[04:21] Condo or Resort?
When you’re at the resort, looking out of your ocean-view balcony, it kind of feels like you’re in an apartment complex.
My room was at the top of the hill (there are hills everywhere). Looking out of my window, I could see the ocean but not the pool or the beach – they were at the bottom past about 4 hills.
[05:50] Be in shape.
With all the hills on the property, there is a golf cart that takes people between the top of the hills where the main building and lobby are, to the bottom of the hills where the pool, beach, and a few restaurants are.
Going down the hill to the pool isn’t much of a problem except it being steep.
Going up the hill, however, is a different story. I did it exactly once, and I did it so that I can tell you to use the golf cart, especially after you’ve had a few drinks at the pool.
The hills were just one part of the resort, so if you can look past that, the rest of the resort is amazing.
[07:53] The black-sand beach.
If your stay revolves around lounging on the beach or swimming in the ocean, you might want to find a different resort.
There are a few lounge chairs on the beach, under some trees, but you will need to walk far out to get to the ocean for a swim. Keep that in mind if your goal is to have a typical Caribbean beach experience.
This isn’t a big deal if you’re not planning your trip around the beach.
[09:43] The rooms.
Some of you might disagree, but the rooms are the most important part.
My room was an ocean-view Junior Suite in the Star Class category. Whenever I stay at a Blue Diamond resort, I have to stay in the Star Class or Diamond Club, so I had a butler and all those services.
These rooms are huge, they’re well-kept, and so beautifully decorated. Mine had a desk, a coffee machine, and a pull-out couch next to the bed. That’s the one area. Then, there was a corridor with the bathroom, closet space, mini fridge, double sinks, and a walk-in shower.
One feature that is amazing is the secret box, which you would usually see at Secrets resorts. These allow you to order room service without ever having to open your door, so you don’t have anyone coming into your room and you don’t have to dress up to get your room service if you don’t want to. This should honestly be at every resort.
[14:20] Star Class.
If you’re staying at a resort, they have some kind of upgraded class. At Blue Diamond resorts, it’s called the Diamond Class. At Planet Hollywood, they’re called Star Class.
It’s basically everything that you would usually get from staying at the resort, plus a few extras.
You get a personal agent, so you will know exactly what’s going on at the resort on a daily basis, and they make all the reservations that you want to have. You get access to the Star Class exclusive lounge and bar, where you can top-up your snacks and your drinks. With Star Class, you’re also given access to the hydrotherapy pool at the spa, which you have to pay for if you’re not Star Class. You get an updated room service menu with a few exclusive items.
This is just as important as your room.
All Blue Diamond resorts have amazing food, and this one confirms that.
They have a SoCal Gourmet buffet, which had quite a few options, similar to the Planet Hollywood in Cancun. There’s the East Sushi & Teppanyaki Bar for those who like Asian cuisine and want to watch the chef prepare their meals. My favourite is the Sunset Strip Steakhouse & Grill, where I had some of the best seasoned steaks of any resort I’ve been to.
These places are at the top of the hill.
At the bottom of the hill, you’ll find the Blue Star Tex-Mex Cantina, where you can get amazing authentic Mexican food. There’s also the Gusto Italian restaurant for great Italian food and live music. If you like your burgers and fries, Guy’s Burger Joint has you sorted. Lastly, there’s the Overtime Bar & Grill, where you can fill up on your food and drinks while watching your favourite sports on the many screens. For your caffeine fix, and to have that mandatory Costa Rican coffee I spoke about in the last episode, you can go to Fuel Coffee Co.
After the restaurants close, you know I’m all about ordering food late at night, so there’s room service 24/7 that I can call.
This is the next most important thing to think about after your room and food.
If you’re not one to leave the resort for entertainment, you want to familiarise yourself with the kind of entertainment that you can find at the resort.
Every night at Planet Hollywood, there was some form of entertainment in their entertainment area, whether it was live music, trivia, or disco parties, where you could dress up in the theme of the night. One of the themes was Glow in the Dark, so I got myself a glow in the dark dress.
During the day, you can attend cooking classes, kayak tours, foam parties, and good music.
I don’t really have any complaints, except having to take the golf cart to the pool and the beach.
The rest was amazing. The staff were amazing, my personal agent (butler) was amazing, the property itself was well-kept and perfectly decorated, the rooms were amazing, the facilities were amazing, and the food and liquor were amazing.
After my two-week stay at Planet Hollywood, I went to Riu Palace Costa Rica, and I’ll be talking about that in the next episode, and then I’ll be comparing the two resorts.
Planet Hollywood Cost Rica has the EJTravelDiva Stamp of Approval, so you know I’ll be recommending it to my clients.
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