Our first 2 nights in Costa Rica were spent at a little family run boutique hotel just outside San Jose in the hills. Our very efficient driver from the Travel Excellence Company met us at the airport. I would not recommend self-driving – traffic is very busy, chaotic and the roads not great. There are few signposts, and I have no idea how anyone knows where to go!
The Finca Rosa Blanca came highly recommended and we ended up in the master suite, best room, simply because there was no other room available! It may have been quirky, but it had fabulous views over the valley. It had a large terrace, lounge with bar, dressing room with central spiral staircase to bedroom which was in the tower, and had 360 views and another balcony. The bathroom was an ecological artist’s paradise!
Whilst certainly different, the stairs were a bit of a hazard; very careful negotiation required! And the lounge sofas were not very comfy.
The onsite restaurant was fine, with open views, and a pleasant ambiance for evening meal and breakfasting.
The staff were very pleasant, friendly and Barbara was super-helpful with a particular problem we had. All were good English speakers. Would I Stay here again? Possibly, but I would have a different room that did not require mountaineering skills!
Following an enjoyable and leisurely breakfast in the sunshine, our driver arrived at 11 am for our private transfer to the Arenal region in central Costa Rica where the Arenal volcano stands proud (if you are lucky enough to see the top through the clouds!) This was a journey of about 110 km. We drove up the Pan-American highway on the Pacific side of Costa Rica, and increasingly the vegetation was dry and beige!
We then drove across country, on twisty roads, hilly up and down, where the scenery was remarkably green, luscious and verdant, changing to flat plains. Several hours later we neared the main town of La Fortuna, the adventure capital of Costa Rica and our next hotel, Nayara Springs.
There are many billboards along the roadside advertising outdoor pursuits of Zip lining, rafting, hiking, walking, chocolate tours, waterfalls etc. La Fortuna certainly is an outdoor enthusiasts paradise with many activities on offer, restaurants and bars.There are also a number of very nice looking hotels.
Nayara Springs is rated as the number 1 hotel in Costa Rica and was top hotel on TripAdvisor. It carries a Relais and Chateau mark and first impressions were very favourable. It is a beautiful all-villa property nestling amongst the tropical vegetation.
Our room was enormous: large bed area looking out onto teak decking with day bed, and table and chairs and plunge jacuzzi pool.
A lounge sitting area with TV and a large his and her’s washbasin, jack-and-jill inside shower, outside shower, loads of wardrobe and space.
What was also great was the complimentary minibar and laundry service (which I maximised fully!)