The casita started as a traditional Costa Rican house with ventilating block all around the tops of the walls, windows opening to the ocean breeze and an outdoor sink for all the cleaning. We have lovingly renovated it to include thatched roof, a shared laundry with the Casa (a second larger house on the wide lot, also available for rent in green season), an outdoor shower with mosaic floor, and extra large screened terrace with hammocks, dining table and chairs, two loungers and lots of space for outdoor living. A new outdoor sink remains, in a new location, for cleaning fish caught in the gulf. Indoors, there is a kitchen with coffee maker, blender, cook top, fridge, and a flip up coffee bar at the window, facing the ocean. The indoor bathroom has a shower with on-demand hot water. In the living room is a TV and DVD player, a Sarchi rocking chair and a double bed futon couch. Double doors lead to a separate bedroom with double bed (facing the ocean with a large window). The sound of waves lulls you to sleep. Overhead fans and one standing fan keep you cool.
Zancudo is an unique place in Costa Rica, close to the Panama border, quiet and free of any large commercial development. Supplies are bought at either of two tiendas which carry most of the necessities of life and not a lot of extras. Fresh fruits and vegetables arrive at the door twice a week by way of Emilio's truck - some of the most delicious produce you could imagine, as well as cheese and more selections of wine! Fresh fish is available from the fishermen at the point - snapper, corbina, tuna, dorado and shrimp. Somehow, we don't miss 'the extras'.
Playa Zancudo is a 7 kilometre long beach inhabited by about 300 Costa RIcans, a friendly community of expats, and visiting tourists. The beach is spectacular and most of the time almost deserted. Swimming is safe and beautiful - gentle waves in the morning for a peaceful float and swim, or bigger waves in the afternoon for boogie boards. Occasionally, there is bio-luminescence for a magical night swim, When the tide is out, biking or walking the beach is the way to get from one end to the other. If the tide is in, there is a single road that runs parallel to the beach. A car is not necessary, as there is a taxi across the street to take you long distances and from day to day, most places are accessible by foot or bike.
From the large screened terrace at Casita Playa Plata, we watch the ocean through the palms and are often delighted by a visit from iguanas, green parrots, and a great variety of birds that pass through the trees. Scarlet mackaws have recently been spotted flying by... there are also humpback whale and dolphin sightings.
We have a volleyball court with a view of the ocean, ready for the games crowd and chairs ready for the spectators. Sometimes the biggest decision is whether to eat on the terrace or try out one of the beach restaurants, lie in a hammock or read in the shade of the rancho on the beach, enjoy the breeze from the ocean and watch the waves or take the plunge (with or without boogie boards), take the bikes or walk to explore the beach.
Zancudo also has a number of excellent restaurants - two doors from the casita is some of the finest Italian food I've ever had. Lali of Puerta Negra features fresh pastas, sauces and seafood and grows the herbs she needs in pots around the outdoor dining room, hung with canopy cloth ceilings and soft lighting. Sol y Mar is a short walk and always has good food and often live entertainment. The menu includes beef tenderloin with brandy cream sauce, fresh tuna (sashimi and steaks) and much more, some Tico fare, and great fruit batidos. It is also a bar, book exchange and small clothing store. Oceano has fresh bread and pizzas by order, and great fresh fish dinners, as well as special events and menus. Macondo is an excellent Italian restaurant featuring fresh pastas, savory sauces and fresh seafood. There are a several other dining places with excellent menus - Coloso and Katherine's Soda are the favourites of many on the beach, the newly opened Capitanes has great ceviche and pescado entero, Mar y Luna and Soda Loritos for an amazing Tico fish fry, and for a fine dining experience, Zancudo Lodge.
Check out Facebook: Zancudo Playa Plata for more photos of Casa and Casita.
Keywords: casita with screened terrace