By Claire Gilbertsen
Costa Rica is one of the hottest tropical destination right now, and it’s no wonder—with swaths of untouched rainforest, it’s an exotic paradise unlike anywhere else—and a reasonable flight from New York City. Costa Rica has that rare undeveloped feel, and some of the most gorgeous beaches in the world are found in the Guanacaste province on the Pacific Ocean side of the country.
Guanacaste culture is slightly different from other parts of Costa Rica because the region once belonged to Nicaragua. The landscape includes volcanoes, jungle, and ocean, and in the past ten years has seen an explosion in luxury accommodations.
For a sophisticated and personal experience, the boutique hotel Villa Buena Onda provides a seamless and peaceful vacation experience unlike any other in the region. Only a short distance from the Liberia Airport (located in Guanacaste’s capital city), arriving at Villa Buena Onda feels like returning to your own private Costa Rican villa. At seven rooms in total, it very well could be, and guests are guaranteed a personalized stay. From the moment you arrive, the staff will make you feel welcome and special. Highly attentive and caring, they seem to be able to intuit when to appear and when to make themselves scarce. Because it’s adults-only, many guests are couples seeking a romantic and quiet getaway.
The ocean view rooms are spacious and have private balconies to enjoy the breezes and the stunning views. Every sunshine-filled room has clean and modern décor, and is equipped with plenty of modern amenities, including flat screen televisions, wifi, plush mattresses, and of course air conditioning.
Guests at Villa Buena Onda find many ways to pamper and relax, including taking a dip in the two-tiered outdoor pool (offering those same stunning views) or visiting the serene spa—a sanctuary that uses locally-produced products and is designed specifically with couples in mind.
Of course, no private villa experience would be complete without your own chef. Part of the experience at Villa Buena Onda includes custom-made meals for guests (included in your stay) based on personal preferences and what is fresh at the market. An additional perk is the complimentary Costa Rican cooking classes—a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening while getting a literal taste of the culture.
There are a variety of other activities, and the staff is more than happy to suggest and arrange anything, from hiking volcanos to whale watching to exploring private white sand beaches. It seems each hike pleasantly leads to dreamy waterfalls. Before Guanacaste was developed, it was known as a secret surfer’s haven, and so naturally there are many opportunities to surf as well—even for novices. And of course, no trip to Costa Rica would be complete without the requisite ziplining trip (and mandatory photo!).
There’s no pressure, though. The unbelievably gorgeous sunsets and picture-perfect beaches are entertainment enough for those who are ready to bliss out and relax during this magnificent getaway, and while exploring the area is encouraged, you’ll be just as happy returning to your villa for a sunset cocktail and some pampering.
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