Villa Buena Onda
Villa Buena OndaThis relaxing, chic boutique adults only property is perfect for honeymoons, babymoons or any other couples focused vacation. Perched atop a hill overlooking Playas del Coco, Villa Buena Onda (VBO) is a romantic property with just 8 stylish and spacious rooms. All feature stunning views from floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors covering an entire wall and furnished terraces looking across the lush jungle to the ocean beyond. And with more staff than guests, you can be assured you’ll be treated like a VIP the entire stay.
VBO began as a private luxury home rental, but converted itself into a boutique hotel in late 2012. The concept is to provide a personalized guest experience usually only found at a small B&B, but with a level of luxury normally reserved for larger resort properties. And they’ve done a great job. Beyond the rooms, we love the two-tiered swimming pool and gardens area, inclusive of a swim-up bar. Don’t skip the nightly happy hour, when prices on the delicious mixed drinks are sliced in half and a perfectly creamy pina colada will only set you back $3.50.
But what really stands out about VBO is the quality of the food. Rates include three meals a day and we were impressed with the variety on the menu — after three nights we still hadn’t eaten our way through all the options — as well as the locally sourced ingredients and flavors. We loved the calamari starter, and devoured all the fresh fish and seafood dishes nightly. For breakfast, anything with gallo pinto is delicious and also ask for a side of hash-browns (they're happy to let you swap around ingredients also, another meticulous service perk that wins us over).
There’s plenty to around this part of Costa Rica as well. One of the larger towns around, Coco Beach is just a 30 minute walk from the property, but they also run daily shuttles here and to two other local beaches. You can also hop in a taxi for around $6. We recommend signing up for day excursions which range from canopy zip line tours to horseback riding, hiking and a recommended Hidden Beaches Tour, which takes you around the area by boat with stops for snorkeling (we swam with a sea turtle) and a BBQ on a secluded beach. Oh and at the end of it all, the on site spa offers very relaxing massages and other treatments.
If you want to explore further afield after experiencing Villa Buena Onda, sister travel agency Namu Travel can design custom adventures around Costa Rica as well as Panama and Nicaragua — located right by the Nicaragua border, Guanacaste is a great region to combine with trips to that country. The location is also just 20 minutes from Liberia International Airport, which has direct flights form a number of American hubs, which is another perk if you’re just looking for a weekend getaway.