|Minimum Stay||4 nights|
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
Jim and I are retired Canadians - biologist and visual arts teacher - from Peterborough, Ontario. We had visited Costa Rica several times before we came to Zancudo on the recommendation of a friend in 2010. In the fifth week of our six week rental here, we decided that Zancudo was everything we could ever hope for in a home away from home.
Everyone in Zancudo seems to have the time to visit or pass on a friendly greeting as you move around the area - 'Hola' and 'Buenos dias' must be your first Spanish words when you spend time here. The Ticos and the expat community are very welcoming. I spend my days swimming, biking, reading, exploring local cuisine and making things. Jim loves gardening and fishing. On his first fishing trip out in the gulf, he caught a spectacular dorado - that may have been the moment we decided to stay.
We found this wonderful property - beautifully treed with icacos, almonds, and coco palms, and further enhanced with hibiscus, beach spider lily, bromeliads, heliconia, orchids, and more tropical plants than I could name. It has the perfect location for convenience and safe swimming (grandkids do come for visits) and two great houses - the casa and the casita. We proceeded to make it home - first the casa ( available to rent in green season), where we live for 5 months of the year, and then the casita (available year round).
We love it here.
Kristine Atkinson purchased this house in 2010
We are very happy to be in a quiet, friendly, safe, laid back beach community. There are no high rises, condo deveopments, or malls. Life is simple here.
We feel healthier and happier as we spend a lot of time outdoors, get exercise, fresh air and healthful food - fresh and delicious. Socially, we can be as quiet or as busy as we like - we've met new friends on the beach and are coming to know many of the expats and Ticos who live here. It is also possible to become involved with the village life - face painting for the children at the annual festival, games nights, art workshops, potlucks and supper club, holiday parties, Cowboy Days horseback ride, etc...
Costa Ricans say it best - Pura vida.
Facebook: Zancudo Playa Plata for more pictures, videos and news of casa rentals.
My boyfriend and I stayed for a week in April at Kris' place. The cabin was clean and perfect! It had everything we needed to have a comfortable stay while in Zancudo. The screened in patio was my fave! hammocks and fans, an our door table. PERFECT! I was covered in bug bites by the time we got here so that was a nice way to spend time reading outside and not get eaten alive. The beach is steps away and the sand and water are beautiful. Kris has bikes you can use to get around town, there is only one road so that is all you need. She helped us arrange horseback riding trips, wildlife rescue trips and joined us for dinner one evening at our request because she was just so lovely. Kris made us feel right at home, from introducing us to her friends to inviting us to community yoga and setting me up with one lady to rent paddle boards to do a sunrise dolphin tour. We loved everything about our time in Zancudo, it is very, very relaxed here so don't show up prepared to cram a lot in every day. Bring a book, or borrow one from the lending library in the cabin, get a massage, listen to birds and meet the neighbours. We can't wait to go back!
I have read all the reviews and can only echo the facts and sentiments described however I want to add something here which may be helpful to a single woman vacationing on her own who faces concerns of safety and socializing. In Zancudo life is simple and simply enchanting from the warm surf to the inclusive community. I thought I had entered a community as close to paradise as one could imagine. My stay at Kris and Jim's Casita was so very charming, comfortable and restorative. I found I could have as much socializing or as much quiet time that one could desire and I my world became one of regular yoga three days a week at Los Cocos, long walks on the beach, hammock with a good book, frequent swims, many dinners with newly made friends at homes or any of the fabulous local restaurants and so much delicious fruits and vegetable arriving twice a week by the truck which stopped right outside your door if you left your sign out! I felt so safe, so surrounded by the best people and I met a number of women living on their own in Zancudo who had made this place their home. This is a very desirable lodging for all of the reasons you have read about by other reviewers who visited with their partners or with family but if you are a woman looking for a place to enjoy on your own I would highly recommend staying here in Zancudo at this Casita. Kris and Jim are wonderful hosts who share their knowledge and community fully with their guests and it is obvious that they take pride in the Casita which is spacious, clean well equipped and comfortable.
My family rented kris and Jim's house for a month. I can't begin to tell you how accommodating they were staring with booking our reservation. Because we were staying so long they suggested we rent the main house (the "casa") instead of the casita. It had everything we needed. I enjoy cooking and the kitchen was well equipped. Not to mention the list of local recipes in the infamous "book" kris and Jim have put together. The kitchen is very open but the appliances are small. Something we had to get used to coming from America where things are super sized. The large teak kitchen table was beautiful. We loved inviting people over for dinner. It had 2 beautiful patios. One enclosed upstairs to keep the Mosquitos away and an open patio downstairs. The downstairs patio has a built in wood fire barbecue with a sink. There was an out door shower out lined with large sea shells that are everywhere on the beach. The shower upstairs was beautifully tiled and overlooked the amazing landscape in the back yard. Although I'm not sure back yard is the best word to describe it. Amongst the palm trees are hammocks, and beautifully built ranchitos. The coconut lined path leads down to the beach. The beach was unlike any other beach we had been to. The water was so warm and the black sand was nicely packed down which made running bare foot on the beach so enjoyable. We felt like we had miles of beach completely to ourselves. It was perfect for my 8 year old. We rode bikes on the beach and built sand castles. The waves in front of the house were great for boogie boarding and I always felt safe and comfortable with my son swimming. The owners also made the journey to zancudo a piece of cake. Kris answered my endless phone calls and emails about what to bring and how to get there. Once in zancudo the property managers, Alex and his wife jourlaney took care of all our needs. Alex kept us stocked with seafood from the local fisherman. This vacation was much different than anything we had ever done before. Instead of a resort beach vacation we really wanted to immerse ourselves in the culture an live amongst the locals. Zancudo was the perfect town to do this. The town's people were so friendly and welcoming. Here are some "must do" things while you are there...Rent the stand up paddle boards from Los cocos, have a drink at Sol y Mar, order the fried plantains and fish at Los Capitanos, and get a massage from Kate. Thanks kris and Jim for sharing your home!
We rented the Casita for 2 months. After my initial reluctance to the time commitment, I now wish it had been 3 months.
From the first conversation with Kris in March, 2013 until she hugged us when we were leaving, our entire experience was positive.
The Casita is in close proximity to the main Casa, where Kris and Jim, the owners, live. One could view this as positive or negative. In this case, it was positive to the nth degree.
Zancudo Beach is a unique place. It's not for everyone. If you really want to get away from it all and have a "life-altering experience", you want to come to Zancudo and rent
Kris and Jim were very considerate in keeping us included in the activities of the community as well as advising us of how to live for the 2 months we were there. That included Emilio coming twice weekly with fresh fruits and vegetables, their property manager Alex procuring fresh fish for us, vendors bringing organic chickens and fresh shrimp to the door.
They were instrumental in getting us to Paso Canoes for supplies, to Golfito for ziplining, to Rio Claro for a healing-garden tour, a well-timed river tour with Susan from Los Cocos, blue-water fishing and to numerous activities in the community. Kris is a retired art teacher and organized a ceramics class twice while we were there, guiding everyone to their desired finished product which she then fired so we had a treasure to take home.
There is organized yoga and pilates 3 times a week a short walk down the beach. There is a game night once weekly and a roving supper club that organizes group dinners at varying restaurants in the community.
Their property is beautiful. We often saw squirrel monkeys crawling through the trees eating the fruit, allowing us to get a number of pictures. There were also parrots and Kris always made sure we were aware when the wildlife was present.
Jim advised us when the bio-luminescence was at its best and we were able to share that experience, which I had never had before.
When we were home, we spent the majority of day on the screened porch, which is lovely. The wifi works perfectly. There are infrequent power outages but they rarely last more than 3 minutes.
The beach is black sand, clean and we were out there often throughout the day. Their location is on a part of the beach where the waves are not as strong as a short distance away. The water is very clean and the temperature allows you to walk right in.
We truly miss it.
Our family enjoyed one of the best one week vacations ever. As natives, we had a preconceived idea of what to expect from a Pacific Coast shoreline and beach, but NEVER something as gorgeous as to what Zancudo Beach NATURALLY has to offer. We had heard how beautiful Península de Osa is, but once we were IN it we were taken away by its natural, unspoiled, raw beauty. We were so fascinated to have been wrapped by nature and see our preconceived ideas shattered by such natural beauty.
Needless to say, the listing description regarding the location was more than accurate and the photo listings don't lie about "La Casita"s" appearance and amenities. The place is so charming, we didn't want to leave. It is very well kept. All amenities are functional and good quality. The property is incredibly well kept. I took the time to walk the rural, dirt road that runs through Zancudo and found that Jim and Kris' property is responsibly well kept, clean. It has beautiful gardens with tropical flora which welcomes birds and butterflies.
Jim and Kris are very special. They are friendly and show hospitality in a very professional way because even though their home is right next to "La Casita" they won't interfere with the guest's privacy. Also, if we needed something from them they were accessible. As a matter of fact, it was Jim himself who recommended which was the best way to get there by car, where to buy groceries at the best prices, etc... The Costanera Sur highway is a sightseeing road trip in itself. I recommend it over any other road. Funny thing, what initially was just a simple grocery shopping trip to a Panamenian border town store turned into a full blown shopping spree because there were mind blowing deals in all sorts of merchandise.
I will definitely have to recommend this property to anybody who is willing to keep this paradise intact and "La Casita" as well kept as it is to continue enjoying this beauty.
Jim & Kris have a blue binder at "La Casita" which happens to be a genuine treasure since it holds valuable information regarding activities, attractions, restaurants, tours, adventures, travel information, doctor's information. We did not need it because all we wanted was to swim in the ocean at low tide (no waves) and walk north and south the dark sand beach which extends for miles in both directions. We wanted to unplug from the city hassle and be absorbed by nature. It was a success.
Thank you Jim & Kris!!!!
We hope to see you soon.
We wanted to have a quiet, relaxing vacation and this gave us the perfect getaway. The casita had everything we needed in the perfect location.
Kris and Jim, the owners, managed to give us the perfect balance between being there to answer our questions and not interfering with our privacy.
We found the location to be perfect, about the halfway point on the beach/road, directly across from a convenience store which had all the supplies we needed. There were also laundry facilites, bikes, boogie boards, lounge chairs, hammocks, well equipped kitchen (the blender got well used for afternoon cocktails!), roomy screened porch, and everything was immaculately maintained.
We did try out some of the local dining establishments, and ate many meals we prepared at home as well. Our favourite breakfasts were at Colos del Mar who had delicious dinners as well. We enjoyed the beach walk there both in the morning and after sunset with a full moon to light our way.
Sol y Mar also served great food and was a friendly local hangout for people watching.
Immediately next door to the casita was Puerta Negra and it was also very good italian food.
The beachfront and peaceful Playa Zancudo vibe was probably what we enjoyed most though. We swam multiple times daily in the warm water and particularly enjoyed it when we had some good waves to play in, lazed in our hammocks and got lots of good reading in.
...Getting to Playa Zancudo was easy and we were given lots of useful info by Kris prior to our arrival so we were well prepared for any problems that could occyr enroute. Fortunately, all went without a hitch. Flight to Gofito, taxi to dock, boat taxi to PZ, where we were met by driver to take us to the Casita.
I wouldn't change a thing about this perfect escape....thanks Kris & Jim
Bird-watching, biking and walking on the beach and exploring the area, boogie boarding and swimming in the waves and the warm gulf waters, sampling the fresh fish from the Gulf, fruits and vegetables from Emilio (delivered twice a week), and enjoying the offerings from the various exceptional restaurants. If you are interested in other activities, try horseback riding, world-class surfing at Pavones or beginner surfing a half hour south on the beach, boat tours in the mangroves, kayaking, fishing tours, boat tours to Puerto Jimenez, tours to the Orchid Farm and the Animal Sancutary, snorkeling tours, and ziplining in Golfito. (all tours at extra cost) Boat taxi trips to Golfito, Pt. Jimenez for Corcovado or Osa Peninsula tours, and custom trips available.
|Rate Period||Nightly||Weekend Night||Weekly||Monthly *||Event|
My Standard Rate
4 night minimum stay
Rates are subject to change until confirmed.
* Approximate monthly rate. Actual rate will depend on the days of the month you stay.