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Lovely Cottage with Fantastic Views of Volcanoes and the Entire Central Valley!

Bedrooms 1
Space 500 sq. ft.
Property type cottage
Minimum Stay 3 nights


About the property

Cottage, 1 Bedroom, 1 Bath, front room with convertible sofa (Sleeps 3)

Casita Alta Vista is a cottage in the classic Latin style with white walls, red tile roof, and terra cotta tile floor. It sits high on a hill just six minutes from downtown Atenas. The Casita offers stunning, expansive views of the Central Valley including two mountain ranges and four volcanoes in the distance. From the broad balcony or the glass-enclosed east room you can gaze out on Poas, Barva, Irazu and Turrialba, with the entire Central Valley stretching out before you and San Jose nestled at the far end. To the north you can see valleys and the mountains of the Northern range, and to the south, the Pacific range. You are surrounded by tropical flowering plants and palms, serenaded by songs of tropical birds. At night you can enjoy the stars and the twinkling lights of the Central Valley.

The cottage is well-ventilated with louvered windows on all four sides and a vented atrium in the center. There is a glass-enclosed room facing the Central Valley that serves as a second bedroom (sofa converts to double bed) and living/dining room. The bedroom has a double bed as well. You don't need air conditioning because the weather in Atenas is always mild. National Geographic magazine claims Atenas has the best climate in the world! A large floor fan is available.

The cottage is at the top of a two-acre lot, landscaped with tropical flowers, palm trees, fruit trees, and two lawns.

The cottage is in a gated community, with security lighting, security wall and a lockable front gate.

You can enjoy broadband Internet access with WiFi, a large-screen TV with Netflix on demand, offering a huge selection of movies and TV shows.

The cottage is fully appointed with all kitchen utensils, flatware, cookware, coffee maker, toaster oven, a small refrigerator, a large refrigerator, and four-burner electric stove with oven. A prepaid cell phone is available with a refundable deposit (additional minutes to be paid by guest). A bodega (small storage building) with washing machine is attached to the cottage. There are clothes lines in back yard.

The kitchen cabinets, bathroom cabinets and bedroom closet are all made from attractive native cedar wood. The ceiling and beams are beautiful hardwoods.

As a guest you will have free use of two swimming pools--one large with water slide, one small--and a tennis court and soccer field at the neighboring mini-resort 300 yards (270 meters) downhill via the concrete driveway. The property is entered from the mini-resort, which is gated. The mini-resort also has a nice restaurant, open some evenings and for parties; the cook is excellent and versatile.

By car you are six minutes from downtown Atenas, which has just about anything you may need. Available there are: four supermarkets; five pharmacies; many restaurants; four banks, two with ATM; internet cafe's; hardware and appliance stores; video store, Spanish lessons; bus station with frequent, comfortable, inexpensive buses to San Jose, International Airport and other towns. Taxis to and from Atenas are convenient and inexpensive. If you need to be picked up at the International Airport Magda, the manager can arrange it. The owner has an arrangement with a rental car company that offers deeply discounted rates to his guests. The casita is 300 meters up a hill from the adjacent mini-resort from where guests enter the property. From the hilltop the views of the central valley are spectacular.

In Atenas you are in a very good location for exploring all the national parks of Costa Rica. Poas, Barva, Irazu and Turrialba volcanoes are visible from the cottage. Atenas has its own entrance to Highway 27, the Caldera Highway. It connects you with downtown San Jose on the east and the Pacific beaches on the west. Drive time to the nearest Pacific Beach is 50 minutes and the drive to Escazu and downtown San Jose is 30 minutes.

You are 10 minutes from the Pan American Highway, which connects all points in Costa Rica plus Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the south. Free suggestions and travel details for the most beautiful, fun places to visit are available upon request. Also you can request free information on other topics such as: How to rent a car cheaply in Costa Rica; complete bus schedule for Atenas; handling money in Costa Rica, Guide to Local Restaurants, security, etc. The guide to local restaurants is available in the casita, as is a copy of our favorite guidebook: Lonely Planet: Discover Costa Rica, 2014.

Once your reservation is confirmed you will receive digital copies of: a map from the International Airport to the house, directions from the airport to the house in English and Spanish, and the Guest guide, which gives you all the information you will need such as: internet access, phone number at the house, how to reach the manager anytime, how to access Netflix, various options for getting around the area, etc.

The Costa Rican greeting, “Pura Vida” epitomizes the local philosophy. It means literally, “Pure Life,” referring to the shared experience living in a land where nature is beautiful, relaxing and unspoiled. Many locals also say “Pura Vida” instead of good bye, wishing you a “beautiful day”. We invite you to come and stay with us for a delightful tropical vacation in paradise. It will be our pleasure to assist you in making your stay with us one of your best vacation choices ever.

Guests can pay by Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, PayPal, check, money order or cash.

Keywords: Cottage

Deposit is 50%, non-refundable. Balance refundable if cancellation is made at least 30 days prior to check-in.

More Details

Property Manager
Robert Cranson
Member since: 2005
Speaks: english, spanish
Response time:
Within a few hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
April 5, 2017

About Robert Cranson

I live at the Global Capital of World Peace, a meditation retreat facility where I do volunteer work. I have a Ph.D in psycholgy, have taught psychology at the university level and taught the Transcendental Meditation program all over the USA, and in Europe and Asia. I travel to Latin America a couple of times a year. Costa Rica is my favorite place, land of Pura Vida.

Robert Cranson purchased this cottage in 2004

Why Robert Cranson chose Alajuela

Atenas was described by National Geographic magazine as having 'the best weather in the world'! I have found this to be true. Furthermore, it is a charming, peaceful, lovely town with wonderful people and the cottage site has beautiful, expansive views of the Central Valley and volcanoes. I fell in love with this town the first day I spent there.

What makes this cottage unique

The tranquility of the location, the inspiration provided by the beautiful, expansive views. The comfort and convenience of the well-equipped cottage. The whole world at your fingertips through the high-speed internet connection. The spaciousness of the property--1.7 acres with fruit trees palms, and tropical gardens. The central location of the cottage for quick access to the Pan American Highway, the International Airport and Pacific beaches. Free access to two swimming pools, water slide, hot tub, tennis court.


Atenas Cottage Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • cottage
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 500 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 3
  • non smoking only
  • pets not allowed
  • children welcome
Location Type:
  • Mountain View
  • Away From It All
  • Budget
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Broadband Access
  • Hair Dryer
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Mobile Phone ...
  • Parking ...
  • Telephone ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Wireless Internet
  • Coffee Maker
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove ...
  • Toaster ...
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 4 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , combination tub/shower , tub , shower
  • Cedar cabinets in bath
  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 3
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 double
    Bedroom 2 - 1 double , 1 sleep sofa /futon , Convertible sofa converts to double bed in glassed-in room.
  • Double Beds (1)
  • DVD Player
  • Television ...
  • VCR
  • Balcony
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Lanai / Gazebo ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Tennis ...
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • wheelchair accessible
Pool / Spa:
  • Communal Pool ...
  • Shared Hot Tub ...
Onsite Services:
  • Car Available
  • restaurants
Leisure Activities:
  • shopping
  • sight seeing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • groceries
  • massage therapist
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • swimming
  • tennis
Cell phone, High-Speed Internet, Kitchen, Stove, Silverware, Flatware, Washing Machine, 2 Pools (Shared), Tennis Court (shared), Hot Tub (shared)


Very Good! 4/5 -
(6 traveler reviews)

Lovely Cottage with Fantastic Views of Volcanoes and the Entire Central Valley!
average rating of 4.0 based on 6 reviews

Casita in the heavens

  • 5 of 5

 I spent 33 wonderful days at the casita and enjoyed the peaceful surroundings and experienced everything from an active volcano, toucans singing in the trees in the front yard, and an occasional falling star at night.  The view as other guests had mentioned was amazing. A grand experience indeed.  The casita is well appointed and a perfect fit for a solo traveler.  My wife did visit for a quick 6 days.  She slept on the pullout couch during her stay and was very comfortable with plenty of soft pillows and covers.  The owner has every pot, pan and utensil you would need. I didn't cook much there as I wanted to experience all the different cuisines that the local Atenas area had to offer.  The shower was perfect with plenty of hot water and a good flow.  The owner was very articulate with directions concerning the washer, Wifi, Netflix, and other items to make your stay easy and comfortable.

    I walked down the mountain to the city center from the casita everyday, it is about a 4 mile walk and only once did I walk back to the casita as going up the mountain is very taxing (not bad for a guy pushing 60 in a couple months. lol).  A taxi ride between the casita and city center was about $5 - $6 USD.  I have been to 4 continents and this was my 27th visit to Costa Rica since 2008. I must say that the casita was one of my favorite destinations ever. That is a big statement for sure, but it is true.  Magda, the owner's right hand gal, was and is a very big help when settling into to the casita.  In fact, I tagged along with her to the farmers market a couple of Fridays.  I also went down to have breakfast at her hotel, and she is an excellent cook too.  I want to thank the owner for having me and another big shout out to Magda.  The casita is an excellent means to recharge your batteries.  If you are looking for a very peaceful and tranquil location then I would highly recommend the casita. Pura Vida !!

  • Submitted: Mar 8, 2017
  • Stayed: Jan 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you, Barry, for your review. Like you, we much enjoy the tranquility, the pure, sweet atmosphere and the spectacular views from the casita. The bird watching from there is always colorful and fascinating as you pointed out. Aside from toucans who like to visit, there are some luminescent green birds that have very long, forked tails. Their feathers are several shades of green from emerald to forest green, all luminescent, like a jewel. Just spectacular. And there are lots of luminescent hummingbirds hovering around. We're glad your wife Sue was comfortable in the casita as well. You can actually sleep 3 people there comfortably with the double bed, the convertible sofa and the queen size inflatable bed that is stored in the closet. We look forward to hosting you again next February and we hope during or before your next stay you can contribute some edits and additions to our Guide to Atenas Area Restaurants, since you have sampled quite a few! There are always new ones popping up, catering to the varied tastes of the large expat population in Atenas, as well as the local Ticos Your vigor is inspiring, walking into town and back each day. For those who aren't quite so athletic, Magda drives into town almost daily and is happy to give my guests a lift whenever she goes. A tip for next time: you can save money on taxis coming back from town by calling the white taxis; they are cheaper than the red ones. More like $4 to or from town, $5 tops. Also, walking up the hill from Magda's resort isn't so tiring if you don't walk 4 miles to town and 4 miles back beforehand! It's only about 300 yards from her restaurant to the casita. And you can take your time and enjoy the nature on the way up. Maybe next time you'll want to enjoy some of the many adventures Costa Rica has to offer like: river rafting, zipline tours, the El Toledo coffee tour, Arenal volcano, Jaco beach on the Pacific coast, Manuel Antonio National Park, Poas Volcano National Park, La Paz Waterfall Gardens Park, Zoo Ave, the Caribbean Coast, Corcovado National Park, etc., etc. Many of the most beautiful, fun attractions are within easy driving distance of the casita. Plus, we have a wonderful, expert, very reasonable tour guide right there in Atenas, who enjoys taking our guests on adventures. He'll pick you up at the casita and away you go. He even has his own airplane! Thanks again for your kind words and we look forward to hosting you again next year. Pura Vida!
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0 0

Comfortable cottage with spectacular views

  • 5 of 5

The cottage was comfortable, well equipped, and the manager was very helpful. It was pleasant to sit on the large balcony and enjoy the view, which is very expansive. It is peaceful there and the environment is beautiful. Having access to the pools and the tennis court at the resort down the hill was nice.

  • Submitted: Feb 3, 2017
  • Stayed: Jan 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you for your review. We agree that the views from the cottage are extraordinary--very expansive, inspiring and always changing so we never tire of them. Sitting on the porch, enjoying a meal or a cool drink epidomizes the experience of Pura Vida and makes one feel like king or queen of all you survey! We have made every effort to make the casita comfortable and cozy inside, while taking advantage of the great climate in Atenas so that the outside can be enjoyed from the large porch/balcony and the yard as well. The big sliding glass doors and sliding screen doors in front give you the fabulous views while keeping the bugs out. The added attractions of two swimming pools, a water slide, a jacuzzi, a tennis court, miniature golf and a heated spa just down the hill help make the experience of Casita Alta Vista a truly special one, offering an extraordinary value in a small package. We hope you can return to Casita Alta Vista and stay longer next time!
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1 0

fantastic location comfort and view

  • 4 of 5

Ceiling fans, screen doors and windows for additional ventilation in summer..

Excellent helpful support from the estate manager

Swimming pools nearby.

All amenities in the self contained Cottage for a comfortable, safe and private stay.

Fantastic location and scenic view.

  • Submitted: Jul 17, 2016
  • Stayed: Jun 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you, Robert, for your review. It was our pleasure to host you and your wife and we look forward to doing so again in September! We appreciate your business and will continue to do our very best to make your time at Casita Alta Vista a very comfortable and memorable one! Like you, we always enjoy the spectacular views of the volcanoes, the central valley and San Jose from the casita. Costa Ricans who visit the casita tell us, "Que vista marvellosa!" and "Es muy tranquilo." Pura Vida, Robert C
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1 0

Loved my 2 month tranquil stay!

  • 4 of 5

I stayed at the Casita for 2 months and loved it! The house is well appointed with everything that you need! The views are outstanding and the front balcony is where I spent most of my time! A short taxi ride gets you into the lovely town of Atenas but the casita was a perfect location to provide you with tranquil peaceful moments away from traffic etc. I would definitely recommend staying here if you enjoy a peaceful location! It is also close enough to San Jose for daily excursions for site seeing trips! Thank you Robert for a great stay!

  • Submitted: Mar 4, 2016
  • Stayed: Dec 2015
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Dear Sue, Magda and I are glad you enjoyed your stay at Casita Alta Vista. It was our pleasure to host you. We agree the views are outstanding from the spacious balcony, with Poas, Barva, Irazu and Turrialba volcanoes clearly visible, and San Jose at the foot of Irazu, at the east end of the Central Valley. It is that view and the restful, peaceful, yet lively nature of that spot that inspired me to build there. When local Costa Ricans come there, they always say, “Es muy tranquilo!” And, as you say, at the casita you are close to the town of Atenas, to the big, new mall in Alajuela, to San Jose, to the Pacific Beaches, to La Paz Waterfall Gardens and other attractions to the north and south. We hope you’ll stay with us again in the future!
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3 0

not what it appears

  • 1 of 5

Tiny casita with little going for it except the view. Very difficult to get to up an almost needed 4 wheel drive road. Shoddy small rooms with bare essentials and too many bugs. No wifi.

  • Submitted: Sep 4, 2015
  • Stayed: Aug 2015
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: We are sorry this gentleman did not enjoy his stay at Casita Alta Visa. However, with all due respect, his experience and his opinions are not generally shared by our other guests. Regarding the size of the cottage, the 24 pictures tell the story; nothing has been altered. What you see is what you get. There is a double bed in the bedroom, a convertible sofa in the living room, and an inflatable twin bed in the closet that can be added for a third guest if desired. This gentleman rented the casita alone, so he had the bedroom, the living room/dining room and a full bath, plus the big balcony and the yard all to himself for relaxing and enjoying the spectacular view. This is the first guest at Casita Alta Vista who claimed there was no WiFi. The WiFi is there, running at 4 mbps; we test it every so often to make sure it is working at full speed. If for any reason it would not be working, the guest has only to let Magda, the manager know and she will immediately call a technician who will come and restore service. The password to the WiFi was provided on a welcoming card that was left on the dining room table along with complimentary fruit, coffee and flowers. This is provided to every guest. Before arriving, every guest also receives a "Guest Guide" that contains information about WiFi including the password, how to access Netflix, etc. This information was emailed to this guest prior to his arrival. The manager informs me that she never received a complaint from this gentleman about WiFi or anything else except the steepness of the driveway. For ten years cars, taxis and trucks have been driving up and down the driveway in ordinary 2-wheel drive vehicles with no problems reported. The manager says this gentleman drove his small 2-wheel drive rental car up and down the driveway many times during his four-night stay. The housekeeper thoroughly cleans the casita before each guest arrives; all the windows and the front door are properly screened. Yet insects can sometimes find their way in; that is a feature of life in the tropics. If anything becomes a problem or an annoyance during one's stay, it is important to call the manager and she will cheerfully take care of it. We are happy to answer any questions prospective guests may have before booking the casita for a stay. In a competitive market, we feel Casita Alta Vista offers an excellent value for our guests and we proudly stand by our description in our VRBO listing. Sincerely, The Owner
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1 0
San Jose

Peace among the butterflies and birds.

  • 5 of 5

We live in San Jose and Atenas is one of our favourite places to visit, it is such a gorgeous little town with so much of what makes Costa Rica unique. The cottage is the perfect place to stay. The views are incredible and the floor to ceiling windows mean you can enjoy them from the second you wake until you decide to sleep. On the first stay we spent the entire day on the balcony bird watching and butterfly spotting. The gardens are mature and attract a lot of wildlife so you won't want to go anywhere. The cottage has everything you need for a relaxing visit; fully stocked kitchen, fast wifi, netflix on a massive tv, bath to properly chill out, really comfortable bed - amazing! On the Sunday we spent the day in the hotel grounds as part of the price. You can choose from 3 pools, play tennis, mini-golf or just enjoy a beer and, again, the wildlife. If you are coming to Atenas I 100% recommend you stay in this beautiful property and enjoy the peace and quiet that makes Costa Rica so 'pura vida'! :)

  • Submitted: Aug 5, 2014
  • Stayed: Jul 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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10 0


Spanish lessons, soccer (football), water slide


Rates & Availability

Atenas Cottage Rental Rates

Rental Basis:
per property
Manager accepts payment in:
Convert Currency
Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
High Season
Nov 15 2016 - Apr 30 2017
3 night minimum stay
Green Season
May 1 2017 - Nov 14 2017
3 night minimum stay
My Standard Rate
3 night minimum stay

Additional information about rental rates

Refundable damage deposit $100
Cleaning Fee $30

Cleaning fee: $30 payable at arrival. Cancellation policy: Deposit is non-refundable. Remaining balance of 50% of the rent is refundable if cancellation is made at least 30 days prior to beginning of rental period.

Manager's Cancellation Policy

Please ask the manager or check their rental agreement when booking the property.

Enter dates for accurate pricing


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