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Recent Playa Santa Teresa reviews

  • Perfect, cool spot for Costa Rican surfing and eating adventure!

    "We truly lucked out by choosing Casa Buena Vida. Our group consisted of two families, and it felt like this property was designed specifically for us. My husband, daughter, and I stayed in the cabana which felt like a modern, luxury hotel suite. It gave us a nice quiet space to call our own while being just steps (literally like 10 steps!) from the pool and only a few more steps to the main house. The main house had a great kitchen and grill (for all of that fish you'll catch if you go fishing with Toto out of Mal Pais), huge patio complete with breeze-generating and bug-reducing outdoor ceiling fans, and the coolest modern living room for lots of hanging out and fort-building (by the kids, we swear it was only the kids!). It was very hot while we were there, and probably always is, but each bedroom on the property had amazing individual AC units to ensure comfort day and night. And the pool, oh the pool! It was beautiful, refreshing, fun - it absolutely made the property feel like a resort. A pool like this is an absolute MUST if you are traveling with kids; we must have spent no less than 4 hours a day in it. For anyone traveling with young kids like mine (15 months), the pool was especially perfect as it had a pretty large shallow "pad" (maybe 1.5' deep) that the littles could play in without having to be in the main deep section. The location of the house really can't be beat either. Santa Teresa and Mal Pais are such cool little towns with great vibes and GREAT food! That was the biggest surprise for us. We had so many amazing meals in the week we were there (Katana, The Bakery, Brisas del Mar, Amici, Shambala, even the beach bar/restaurants Banana Beach and Habaneros).Casa Buena Vida is walking distance or super short cab ride to all of these. Plus the house is practically on the beach (maybe half a city block). The waves and current are a bit strong to turn your kids loose in, but my toddler and I enjoyed plenty of time playing in the sand and letting the water crash over our feet. Calmer Hermosa Beach is a 20 minute/$20 cab ride away and is great for learning to surf, playing in the small waves with the kiddos, and chasing hermit crabs in the sand. Other posters have mentioned the amazing staff at the house, and I couldn't agree more. Between the housekeeper, pool guy, gardeners, and overnight security guard we felt very pampered and VERY safe. The only thing that could be better is if we were still there........."
    Guest: Alberta U. Date of Stay: August 2015 Review Submitted: August 18, 2015
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  • The Best

    "TL:DR - Really awesome house on the beach with super helpful caretaker. Good food close by. I'd give 6 stars if I could. I have just returned from 4 days at Casa Amore with my family over a long Easter weekend. Three kids, 16, 12 and 9. This place is awesome. I mean really awesome. It's just up the beach from the "downtown" crossroads area of Santa Teresa. Three large bedrooms are very nice, good beds, sheets, towels, etc. Bathrooms are also very nice with good showers. Separate large TV room with AC and big couches for when the kids need downtime. Kitchen is well appointed with everything we needed, including a Vitamix which did the job on smoothies. Bedrooms have AC, main living space does not and we didn't miss it. We didn't come to CR for the AC. The covered porch areas are nicely comfortable with couches, big dining table, hammocks, and a view through the trees to the beach and surf. Properties on either side are empty (no houses), although one of them is a preserve with occasional campers and people walking to the beach. Very low traffic there and nothing concerning. Still, plenty of privacy here. Wifi is good by CR standards. I also can't say enough good things about the caretaker Dave and his wife. They live in a house on the property that is about 100 meters closer to the road from Casa Amore. After you walk or drive by their house you won't see it since Casa Amore is generally oriented towards the beach. Dave was very responsive, very helpful, and I enjoyed talking to him about CR and the variety of options available to us during our stay. You'll see him around once or twice a day if you're outside and looking, but he's not in your space at all and most of the time I communicated with him by email. Very responsive. He was particularly helpful with getting us hooked up with surfing lessons and rentals (all newbies here), and key advice on where to swim and surf. Maid service was great and came once while we were there and that was plenty. She also did a bit of our laundry which was very helpful towards the end of a 9 day trip. For casual food within very close walking distance, nearby is Chicken Joe's. Get the fish tacos or the rotisserie chicken (or anything really). Billy also keeps some local micro brews in the fridge. Really good, and a 3 minute walk from Casa Amore. If we go back to Santa Teresa, and I hope we do, we'll stay at Casa Amore again. Not sure what else anyone could want in a rental."
    Guest: ThrowMeSomethingMister Date of Stay: March 2016 Review Submitted: March 29, 2016
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  • A little bit of heaven off the (literally) beaten path

    "My 18 year old daughter, her friend and I just spent 10 heavenly days at Maison Marazul. The house and property were wonderful and perfect for our little group. The two suites are set up quite independently of each other and gave us the space an adult and two teenagers require. The property is right on the beach, with just the right amount of landscaping to keep the house private but still be able to see the surf. From the comfort of our loungers we spied iguana, geckos, monkeys, squirrels, parrots,magpies, heron and hummingbirds . Every evening we sat on the loungers at the beach and marvelled at the stunning sunsets. We had a mix of active days and relaxing days. On the relaxing days the hardest part of my day was choosing my spot! Chaise by pool, chaise on the lawn, chaise on the beach, arm chair on one of 3 porches or the hammock (pick the hammock!!!). Hide tide or low tide the beach was always great. At low tide you can walk the beach for hours in either direction. The tide pools are so interesting and big enough to relax in! You can't swim right in front of the house, but there is a small swimming area two minutes away ( in front of Florblanca resort) or Santa Theresa beach is a 10 minute walk away. The kitchen is completely equipped with everything you need to prepare full meals. They had salt, pepper, sugar, oil, vinegar and lots of spices available for use. Generally we ate breakfast and lunch at home, then went out to many wonderful restaurants for dinner. There is a binder full of information in the house with great restaurant and activity suggestions. Our concierge Tania set up two great excursions for us, zip-lining in Mal Pais ( the family who runs it are so much fun) and a snorkelling/touring/fishing tour with a great guide named Micho. The girls had a great surf lesson with Taylor (expat Canadian) from Surf 360 in Santa Theresa. We rented a 4x4 Daihatsu Bego ( arranged by Mario the property manager) and wouldn't have enjoyed the vacation as much without it. With the car we checked out Hermosa beach, the falls at Montezuma, Santa Theresa and Mal Pais. There was so much more we could have done but it was hard to leave the wonderful house! I would love to go back....right now! The 3 house staff deserve a big thank you. They keep the house and the gardens clean, beautiful and safe. I don't recommend the house for families with young children as the second and third rooms are accessed from outside the main house."
    Guest: Joan O. Date of Stay: March 2016 Review Submitted: March 29, 2016
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  • Fair with Flair

    "I read the review complaining about missing pool tiles, and I have been thinking about what constitutes value in a vacation rental. I guess value occurs when reality meets expectations. My wife and I stayed at Cocobolo for eight nights in March, followed two weeks later by four days in Cancun. In such places as Maui and Cancun, the native people, plants and wildlife have been eradicated to make room for wall-to-wall hotels, each with its own private chunk of beach, a pool and a place to get drunk while being catered to by white-jacketed servants. If this is your idea of heaven, then by all means go to Maui. We found Trey helpful and friendly, attentive and supportive. He did not, however, make our drinks. Cocobolo is "in amongst 'em." The roads are terrible and dusty, but Cocobolo gets much less dust than does anyplace six miles away in Santa Teresa. We enjoyed buying local fish and produce in S.T. and Cobano, and picked up our de rigeur souvenir machete at the hardware store in Cobano. Trey took us fishing one day, and we drove the Pacific Coastal Highway, i.e. the beach at low tide, and we hit nearly 60 mph on the smooth, open sand. Of course, we had rented a car. The beaches are extensive and very sparsely populated, despite there being good fishing and a shallow, gradual, sandy slope into the water. I estimate I waded out 100 yards and was no more than waist-high, except when Manzanillo's famous surf came crashing in. Great for beachcombing, suntanning and cloud watching. Monkeys in the trees every day -- both howlers and white-faced. We saw violaceous trogons, cinnamon hummingbirds and other exotic-to-us birds. I don't know if the air conditioning worked, because we never turned it on. Lovely weather throughout. The "missing" screening around the pools was not missing. It was being installed, and the hooks had just been welded to the posts. There is no law against writing a negative review, but I can say we are happy the guests at the other villa were much less dour than our predecessor. Negative: the one thing that caught me off guard was that I expected somebody else's vacation house that was being let for weeks for income. Trey has three or four (didn't count 'em, and they are scattered) on the property. Would we go back? Probably not, but only because our history says we go forward. We had a great time. Thanks, Trey!"
    Guest: Kerry K. Date of Stay: March 2016 Review Submitted: April 19, 2016
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