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“A true delight!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Samasati Retreat & Rainforest Sanctuary

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Samasati Retreat & Rainforest Sanctuary
3.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Carbon 1, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica (Formerly Samasati Nature Retreat)   |  
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
Nashville, Tennessee
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“A true delight!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2008

I don't use the word "awesome" often, but it certainly applies to Samasati. It is a delightful retreat! The buildings are all constructed of beautiful local hardwoods. The meals were delicious. The staff was very helpful and accommodating. The yoga/meditation classes were a real treat. You are made to feel comfortable regardless of your level of practice. If you’re into nature, the trails on the property are great. Be sure to pack a good pair of boots if you plan to do a lot of hiking and a pair of binoculars which make jungle treks a lot more interesting. It’s amazing to observe the howler monkeys, sloths, toucans and parrots in the treetops. The waterfall trail on the road past the yoga studio was a favorite. If you find yourself in Puerto Viejo, stop in Chile Rojo’s for a great meal and the best pina colada in town (note: they don’t take credit cards) and a trip to the beach at Punta Uva is a must. Overall, it was a wonderful experience. I hope to do it again!

Stayed June 2008
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265 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (61)
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English first
Houston, TX
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2008

Oh my goodness!! My husband (I love that I can say that!)and I had the BEST honeymoon ever at Samasati Nature Retreat! I have to be honest I was a little nervous just because I was going out on a limb never traveling to Costa Rica before..... However EVERYTHING from the transportation, food, bungalow, service was amazing!! We were picked up from the airport on time and the van was really nice!! Our driver (Martin) was very friendly and extremely accomodating.... The service at Samasati is impecable!!! Every single employee did everything that they could to accomodate us!! The food was extremely good AND healthy!! I was suprised about this because my honey and I are not vegetarians.. (We did go to the local towns though and had some meat.. THE BEST SUSHI RESAURANT is called Sushimi in Puerto Viejo (only 10 minutes away) You MUST go by this place if you like sushi.. The husband and wife (Jason and I dont know how to spell his wifes name...) that own the restaurant make the best sushi that I have ever had... They are extremely creative everything from the atmosphere to the different rolls that incorporate the fresh fruits in Costa Rica was just amazing I could talk forever about my experience just trust me and go!!! FYI if you plan on being out past 9:00 pm you must make other arrangements to get up the mountain because the mountain is so steep the vehicle must be a 4x4 It really is not that big of a deal though because there are ppl in the area that are willing to do this (we used fred.. he was really good and the front desk can set this up for you!!! We were very active on our honeymoon I highly recommend the tours..wedid the white water rafting (that was amazing I felt so adventurous) canapy tour (zip lining through the rain forest) kayaking tour down the Punta Uva river (the river was low but it was still good!! BEST BEACH was Punta Uva very secluded and very clean! The bungalow that we stayed in was Namaste and it was AWESOME we had the top room (there are 3 stories)we shared a bathroom on the second floor and that was the only bad thing about it but it really was not that bad... I never had a problem with having to use the bathroom it worked out perfectly =) The facility was very clean and neat. We did not have any bugs either I am very happy to report that.. because going to the rainforest you have to expect that but we did not have any encounters.. We did however come into some sloths howler monkeys frogs spider monkeys and that was awesome I had never seen any in nature like that before!! Very cool!! Oh and the howler monkeys do wake up at around 5:30 but it was not that bad and if worst comes to worst the front desk can get you ear plugs! The manager Lucy (FANTASTIC manager!!) was sooo accomodating we requested a fan for our room and ear plugs on the first day and at dinner that night she informed us that the fan was in our room and handed our ear plugs to us.. she did say though just try to sleep without them for one night and we did and did not have to use them the entire time we were there... Cant say that was true for everyone but it was for us!! We did the exotic honeymoon package and I highly recommend this for any nature lovers!! =) I can not wait to go back!! When I do you can bet your bottom dollar I will be getting another message.... (John was outstanding!!) We plan on going back for our one year anniversary!!

  • Liked — The service
  • Disliked — sharing bathroom
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, D.C.
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2008

I went to Samasati for my honeymoon, and it was fantastic. My husband and I are not the all-inclusive resort types. We like camping, hiking, and hanging out at the beach. But we also appreciate well run lodging that is clean and pleasant.

If you are a like-minded traveler, you will love Samasati. The bungalows and eating/reception area are constructed from beautiful wood, and the views over the rainforest and Puerto Viejo are unbeatable. Everything was very clean and well managed. The staff is so helpful, but very laid back (as are most things in the Puerto Viejo area). And the food was fantastic. We aren't even vegetarians, and we loved it. If you're really craving fish, they can provide it if you tell them ahead of time. And there's lots of other meat to be had in Puerto Viejo.

We both got massages, which were some of the best we've had. We did not participate in yoga, but I did attend a great meditation session with the yoga instructor. Just because you're not that into yoga doesn't mean that you won't love this place.

My only complaint is that the bedding (pillows and mattress) could have smelled fresher. It's hard to keep things fresh in a rainforest/jungle, but they could use some new pillows. As for the insect/spider issue, we really didn't have any issues. We had several lizards in our bungalow, and they helped keep the insects at bay. I honestly didn't get bitten by a single mosquito the entire time I was there (5 days). We never saw any huge spiders in our bungalow, but another couple saw one in theirs. Just keep in mind, you are in the jungle. Embrace it. For the one spider you see, you will see three sloths, five monkeys, and countless tropical birds.

If you usually stay at resorts, maybe Samasati is not the place for you. If you can appreciate something a little different, something off the beaten path with a unique feel, you will love Samasati.

  • Liked — location, staff, beautiful structures, food
  • Disliked — pillows
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2007

First night there food was great but we did not conquer our bug fear(they are the size of my hand)Killed two scorpios while washing my face they crawled out of the drain..Too much a camping deal for me and get really tired of the Hollar monkeys every morning at 4:30 a.m. Needed a vacation from a vacation. Needed the Pacific which more like a resort place and clean no trash...

  • Liked — Food
  • Disliked — Bugs
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PaulMax, Marketing and reservation manager at Samasati Retreat & Rainforest Sanctuary, responded to this review, February 24, 2008
Sorry that you could not relax .... your description of bugs is a little out of proportions .... Samasati is in the forest and the forest is the natural habitat of many living creatures... it would be like going to New York expecting not to find any car.... never the less bugs are in the forest , not in the rooms. The bungalows have screenings windows and they are cleaned every day, the food is served as buffet style and is well protected by any insect there may be. We are open since 10 years and we have had thousands of people visiting and enjoying the space. It is simple yet very protected and cozy.
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long beach, ca
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 12, 2007

this vegan yoga retreat is exactly what it claims to be. fantastic food [especially the dinners] for vegans [soup, main course, veggies and awesome salad dishes]. beautiful location, great houses, cabins and dining area. phenomenal rain forest walks and when in your hammock or cabin it sounds like you are right in the middle of it. best part is the 6 dogs that live there [mostly lab and lab/german shepard mixes] that are really friendly. they'll go for walks with you and sit on your deck at night. the yoga studio is beautiful and the teacher phenomenal. practising yoga whilst listening to the sounds of the rain forest all around you can't be beaten. yes it took ages to get to on the bus [4.5 hours], but it was well worth it. the staff are really helpful and friendly and i'd go back again any time! highly recommended.

  • Liked — it's totally in the middle of the rain forest
  • Disliked — the 5 hour bus journey to get there from san jose - but it's worth it!
  • Stayed April 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2007

I went on the Christmas Adventure package in 2006 and had a wonderful time. I stayed in the guest house accomodations. The best things about the vacation were: the people I met (Samasati attracted an open, fun, fit crowd), the food, the amazing setting (toucans flying past the hot tub every day), and the adventures. I travelled by myself but made many pals.
The worst things about the trip were the amazing heat/humidity combination and scary bugs, including tarantulas and HUGE cockroaches.
If you are expecting a 5-star luxury experience, don't go to Samasati. If you want a vacation that can be as relaxing or exciting as you want it to be, but without lots of frills, this is a great place for you.
I won't comment on the yoga or massages because I didn't go for much of either and their instructors/therapists seem to rotate fairly frequently.

Stayed December 2006
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
washington dc
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2006

The resort was fine, the staff was cool, yoga teacher fantastic, food ok (we were told the cooks aren't accustomed to cooking vegetarian food and had like one cookbook), but coming back and learning a month or so later that we had a tropical disease was a real bummer. We're getting treated at the NIH by the most experienced parasitologists around, and even they were really surprised by the particular species of the organism we had. It's a nasty one, and not one they expect to see coming from Costa Rica. It's almost 6 months later and we're still not sure where the disease will take us. So, kind of wish we'd gone to Kripalu.

Stayed June 2006
Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Samasati Retreat & Rainforest Sanctuary

Address: Carbon 1, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica (Formerly Samasati Nature Retreat)
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #17 of 72 Specialty Lodging in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Samasati Retreat & Rainforest Sanctuary 3*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Samasati Retreat & Rainforest Sanctuary Perched on a magical mountain ridge overlooking the Caribbean Sea, Samasati offers guest house bungalow and casita accommodations just minutes away from the beaches of Puerto Viejo. For over 20 years we have hosted world class retreats, workshops, guest artists and travelers like you! Your stay includes delicious gourmet vegetarian buffet served in our renovated open air restaurant with breathtaking views. Also available on site are healing massage treatments, jacuzzi spa, nature trails, waterfall with natural pool, daily yoga classes and a meditation hall. Tours, excursions and beach shuttles to local attractions are arranged daily. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Samasati Nature Retreat Hotel Puerto Viejo
Samasati Retreat & Rainforest Sanctuary Costa Rica/Limon

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