Where to Stay in Costa Rica
Costa Rica offers many options to indulge yourself with 5-star accommodations that come at a much more accessible price, making this destination not only a nature-lover’s paradise, but a country where you can spoil yourself a little in between the zip-lining, volcano viewings, and horseback riding. Several of the places where we stayed were already on my radar as ‘must-do’s’. Here’s why you really can’t afford NOT to “splurge” in Costa Rica:
FINCA ROSA BLANCA, Herediawww.fincarosablanca.com Pictures don’t do justice to this imaginative Gaudi-esque structure, located on a former private coffee plantation in central Costa Rica. Check out the website and you’ll see why this is one place you cannot miss – in fact, one night isn’t enough to take advantage of the grounds, pool, cuisine, or even the opportunity to just relax and soak it all in. The Rosa Blanca suite is beautiful enough that you might even want to consider scheduling your visit around its availability! Because here you can sleep 40 feet above the ground in a tower bedroom with a 360 degree balcony view of the surrounding countryside.
www.laparios.com Imagine a 5 star jungle eco-lodge experience, with gourmet meals, a delivered-to-your-individual-hut wake up coffee service and on-site nature trails populated with colourful toucans and macaws. Throw in a mosquito-netted king bed, boutique hotel bathroom and an indoor/outdoor shower right out of Swiss Family Robinson, and that’s Lapa Rios. Spend the money and feel like a modern-day Tarzan and Jane.
SPLURGEXANDARI PLANTATION, San Jose www.xandari.com This spa village feels like a bargain compared to anything you would find in North America with this level of luxury and amenities. Individual villas are private oases with individual, artful decor and spectacular terrace views of the city below which transforms into a jewel-box of lights come evening. Original art is everywhere, integrated beautifully into the architecture and the landscape. Wander down one of the nature trails and you will be rewarded with access to a lush river setting with dramatic waterfalls. Whether you start or end your visit to Costa Rica here, you won’t be disappointed.
SPLURGESI COMO NO, Manuel Antonio www.sicomono.com Call it a resort, call it a spa, call it a wildlife refuge, Si Como No is one of the best ways to enjoy the area of Manuel Antonio in ‘barefoot luxury’. Set into a hillside overlooking the ocean, and surrounded by lush jungle gardens, your room comes complete with everything you’ll need to settle in, except a television! With the grounds, pool and gardens as beautiful as they are at SiComoNo, you won’t miss unplugging completely to enjoy Costa Rica’s ‘Pura Vida’. If you’re considering visiting this area, consider staying where the name “Si Como No” itself puts you in the right frame of mind to relax and say “Sure, Why Not?”
SCORE!ARENAL OBSERVATORY LODGE, Arenal www.arenalobservatorylodge.com What would you pay to lie in bed, staring through floor-to-ceiling windows at a still-active volcano sputtering gas and steam from its caldera? Not as much as you’d think! In fact, given that description, this lodge is a steal! Which is why we chose to say in the Smithsonian Room, where two double beds face the expansive windows for front-row seats of the volcano, whatever time of day or night Arenal chooses to act out. This lodge was once used by the Smithsonian Institute to house scientists studying the Arenal Volcano, 1.7 miles away, hence the name of the rooms we chose. But if you’re interested in more than the geology, there are beautiful nature trails surrounding the lodge, as it is located in Arenal National Park. And not to worry, the volcano hasn’t been really active since 2010, but should it decide to get particularly angry, you are well protected by the deep gorge of the Agua Caliente River.
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