We booked our trip from a Travelzoo deal, and I’m so glad we took advantage of this great offer! We discovered such a gem! We traveled during the rainy season so it was less busy and we received more personal attention, but the weather was great. Every morning we had blue skies and sunshine. The clouds would roll in later in the afternoon, and if it rained it did so overnight.
I tried to capture a lot of detail from our trip for those who are interested, but if you want the short version – you will not be disappointed with Gaia at all! It’s a wonderful place with great facilities and amenities, a wonderful staff, and I highly recommend it to everyone! There is wildlife at every turn, the food is incredibly delicious, the views are sensational, and rooms are quiet and comfortable. There was some construction and updates happening while we were there, but it was never a bother. The newly complete wine bar / lounge is a welcoming space with low chairs and a chill vibe. There is also some beautiful local artwork on display for sale. We were only there for four days and didn’t use the pool (I only dipped my foot in one evening, but we never swam). They appeared clean and the water was comfortable.
Before beginning to describe our wonderful time at Gaia, I'd like to encourage anyone going to Gaia to get in touch with the main office before you travel down to book your excursions and spa visits. We did, and it worked out great as we were able to do everything we wanted, which I've read in other reviews was a problem for some. The main office staff is wonderful and super helpful, so don't be afraid to reach out to them.
Our wonderful trip to Gaia started with an enjoyable ride from our first great driver, Jorge. He efficiently navigated the way to Gaia and informed us about his beautiful country along the way. He was very friendly and we enjoyed our conversation with him. Jorge stopped to show us the Tarcoles River that is home to over 4,000 crocodiles! Further down the road, he spotted scarlet macaws so we pulled over to take pictures. That was a great catch on his part because we didn’t see them for the rest of our visit! (Thanks, Jorge!)
When we arrived at Gaia, the friendly, welcoming staff at the gate took our bags and drove us up to the main office for check-in. We were greeted by Andres, our fantastic personal concierge. He took us on a tour of beautiful Gaia which ended in our jungle studio room where he explained the amenities and made sure any of our questions were answered. Our bags followed shortly, we freshened up, and headed to the La Luna Restaurant for a delicious dinner. After dinner, we relaxed for a bit and headed to the Terra Spa for our 90-minute hot stone massages. It was incredible! I highly recommend it! The masseuses were so fantastic. I felt like a noodle when we left. It was so perfect after a day of traveling and it knocked me out. I slept so well in the comfortable bed.
The following morning we had our first scrumptious breakfast at La Luna. After breakfast, we left for the 9 AM Midworld Ziplining Canopy Tour. I cannot recommend this enough (and I’m a giant wimp and was nervous to do this)! It was incredible – especially the Superman line! Simply phenomenal!! The staff at Midworld is so great! We had an amazing adventure there after which they fed us a delicious lunch prepared fresh in their kitchen. We left their property and headed back to Gaia. We relaxed for the rest of the afternoon before heading up to La Luna for another incredible dinner where we met David, one of the owners. It was so nice to meet him and see the care and interest they take in making sure each guest has a fabulous experience at Gaia. The ambiance in the restaurant is so welcoming and comforting. There is live music provided by two talented gentlemen that we greatly enjoyed. The staff at La Luna is just wonderful! Christian mixes up some tasty cocktails! Aldo and Jose took care of us for each of our meals, and we truly enjoyed getting to know these genuinely wonderful men.
On our second morning, we ate another wonderful breakfast before heading off to the Manuel Antonio National Park for a guided tour with Jordan, the resident nature expert at Gaia. We learned a lot on our tour and I’m glad we did it because Jordan’s amazing eyes caught things we would never have seen! We stayed in the park after the tour and saw white-faced monkeys near the Manuel Antonio beach. The only disappointment was that the path to Playa Escondido was closed so we couldn’t see that beach (where some of the movie ’Castaway’ was filmed). We left the park and had lunch at the Marlin Restaurant in Manuel Antonio where we called for transportation back to Gaia. It was a gorgeous day, but I didn’t realize how warm I was and started to feel a little ill. We got back to Gaia, and I rested before getting a deep-tissue massage at the Terra Spa. It was very healing and I felt great by the time I went to La Luna to join my husband. I found him relaxing in the lounge adjacent to the restaurant watching NFL on the big screen. Christian and Jose brought us our drinks, appetizers and dinner in the lounge. It was a perfect evening.
The following day we had breakfast and went on the Manuel Antonio Catamaran Adventure. It was so awesome!! The Ocean King Catamaran (the largest in Central America) is a two-story vessel with a full bar and two hot tubs. The staff was very pleasant and professional. We got lucky again as we saw both bottle-nosed dolphins and humpback whales on our tour. It was an incredible experience! The last part of the excursion was snorkeling off the coast and it was very cool! After snorkeling, they opened up the two slides on the back of the boat and you can jump off the side – very fun afternoon! They provided a great lunch before returning to port. This is another excursion that I highly recommend!
Our last morning at Gaia was just as wonderful as every other and it made me sad to leave. We had a great breakfast and said goodbye to the staff at La Luna before heading down to the main office to check out. I cannot wait to go back! I felt very at home at Gaia and very well cared for. Our driver back to San Jose, Andres, was also very wonderful. It was a pleasure to meet him as well. Everyone we interacted with embodied the Pura Vida spirit and I’m trying to hold onto it as well until I can get back to Gaia. Muchos gracias mis amigos!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
October 3, 2012
Wow.....9 paragraphs full of our recent guests wonderful experience here at Gaia. Indeed, I do believe we created some magic here.
Report response as inappropriate
When all is said and done, we have added yet more wonderful guests to the Gaia family. Your wonderful comments make our time and experience here at Gaia all worthwhile. This is exactly why Gaia was created.
Thank you for taking your personal time to write on this TripAdvisor forum....it means a lot to us.
Please return soon....we'll be waiting for you.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.