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“Two Trips in One” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Gumbo Limbo Villas

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Gumbo Limbo Villas
400 mtrs East and 200 mtrs South of Brunelas Hostel, Santa Teresa 60111, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #24 of 30 Santa Teresa B&B and Inns
Atlanta, Georgia
2 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Two Trips in One”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2010

My new favorite place in the world! When I first arrived to this hotel I was overwhelmed with the natural beauty of the property. Tucked away up a dirt road, in the jungle, on the side of a mountain, the views of the Pacific took my breath away. From here you have a great view of the town below. Though it is a steep road up the mountain it is well worth it to escape the loud, dusty parade of trucks, motorcycles and 4 wheelers zooming down the main road of the town. Away from it all, there is no better place to be than sitting in the pool, watching the incredible sunsets and WILD MONKEYS, cocktail in hand of course.

Traveling alone, I felt like I had come to visit old friends. The owners (and their two dogs, Reef and Zuma), could not of been more welcoming or helpful in helping me on this trip. The only bad thing I have to say is after over indulging on the wonderful culinary treats of the Italian chef / owner Michele I have left my no-carb diet in the dust! Being in Beautiful Santa Teresa, Costa Rica with a wonderful Italian chef leaves no need to visit Italy...

Much appreciation to Sonny as well for organizing surf lessons and transportation for me as well. These two guys helped to make Santa Teresa a trip I will never forget. And I can not wait to be back in that pool watching the sunset with a cocktail in hand soon!

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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77 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Wilmington, North Carolina
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2010

Without question...the most wonderful place we have ever visited! From the amazing hospitality to the incredible food we may not have left if we had our dog on the trip with us! We not just guest but treated truly as life long friends from the moment we arrived to our departure. Michele we would come back just for the food! You are an amazing chef!! Our dinners everynight were fantastic. Betty~ Wow! The best breakfast burritos and omelets every morning! Olanso was fantasic and gave great insight on where to go in town!
Michele~ Thank you for a remarkable experience at Gumbo Limbo! We are coming back and next time with friends! If anyone is considering going to Santa Teresa then you would not be doing yourself an injustice if you did not stay at this top of the line Villa on the Mountain that overlooks the Pacific! Just breathtaking and the perfect vacation! We are counting down our days till we head to Gumbo Limbo Again.Thanks again for looking out for us and ensuring everything was perfect for our honeymoon!!!!

JT & Shanna

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Vancouver, Canada
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2010

Our stay was so horrible that it actually made me depressed and I just wanted to stay away as long as possible so that I didn't have to be in the "oceanfront room". We were willing to pay for a villa but they were not available and for the price they should not be allowed to rent these rooms. It was like staying in a hostel but paying luxury prices. Between the constant loud buzzing sound that I couldn't quite place and a putrid sulphuric smell that we could smell from our open air bathroom which was not clean when we arrived nor was it ever cleaned during our stay. That was the other thing - no maid service which would have been fine if the room itself was more sanitary. The room had no air conditioning and barely enough room to fit the bed. The only food available was at breakfast - poor planning given that the villas are all the way up a very bumpy dusty hill very far away from everything. This means you can't walk to a restaurant, you need to jump in a car everytime. Needless to say we left as soon as we found another hotel but the straw that broke the camel's back was the pool. It was so disgusting and had obviously never been cleaned that I didn't even dare put a foot into in case I contracted anything. However, Santa Teresa itself was beautiful and the place we found called the Nautilus was a godsend - beautiful, chic, great service,convenient location, great value, cheaper , clean, spacious and air-conditioned.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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GumboLimboVillas, Owner at Gumbo Limbo Villas, responded to this review, October 12, 2010
Let me start off by stating that not a single one of our reviews was paid for our for that matter even requested. They all came from our guests over the past year and a half and written on their own initiative. The other items regarding your review that I would like to address is the fact that I went through all of my guest logs/reservations and did not find a single client that comes close to resembling your profile. The fact is that we have never and would never rent one of our "Oceanview Rooms" to a family of four. This is because each of those rooms has only a queen size bed and is designed specifically for a single person or a couple. The other issue you raised regarding not having a place close by to have dinner is exactly why we have a restaurant on site for our guests (Breakfast and Dinner). Nonna Teresa Rest. has been open and available for everyone since Dec. 2008. So while the town restaurants are down the hill (400 yards away) you do have the option of dining at Gumbo Limbo Villas with an excellent Italian menu and very competative prices. As for housekeeping, we have an excellent cleaning lady (who also cooks breakfast every morning) available everyday to clean your room. All you have to do is tell her at breakfast and she will take care of all of your housekeeping needs. We do it this way to preserve the privacy of our guests. If the guest desires to have thier room cleaned automatically everyday then they just have to let one of us know at the beginning of thier stay and it will be done. The truth is if you want it done twice a day then it will be done twice a day. Period... Finally the pool. I do recognize that at some points this year there were isolated instances when the pool was not as clear as we would have liked it to be. This, to be sure, is unacceptable. We have, however, resolved this situation through the hiring of a local pool cleaning expert who knows very well the problems facing pool clarity here and since that time our pool has remained crystal clear without exception. Hopefully this response answers all of your concerns regarding "your stay" with us here at Gumbo Limbo Villas and that at some point in the future you will give us the opportunity to regain your confidence in our ability to satisfy all of your vacation rental expectations.
Sonny Redding
Gumbo Limbo Villas
Playa Santa Teresa, Costa Rica
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geneva, Switzerland
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2010

Gumbo Limbo is probably one of the best spots in Santa Teresa. The view is breathtaking from the top of the hill, and the beautiful Villas are well designed and very comfortable. My girlfriend and I were there from mid to end of April. Initially we had planned to stay 4 nights, but we enjoyed our stay so much that we extended it to 8 (the Iceland volcano did the rest for us, and we stayed 15 days).

We stayed during the end of the hot season, so we could really appreciate the location at the top of the hill, as there was always a little bit of fresh air up there, that you wouldn't find down in the village.

Sonny and Michele were extremely friendly and helpful, they gave us the best tips, took us to great places, organized our dives and surfing lessons (With Quique, extremely friendly and qualified surf instructor) Sonny picked a great hotel for us on our way back to San Jose . Michele cooked for us each time we decided to stay in the hotel, even if it was just the two of us, so we were really spoilt, and he is a great cook, believe me!! I should add the meal prices were on the lower range of Santa Teresa, the quality was top-end.

Sonny and Michele are two very good surfers as well, so they can advise you on the best spots depending on the current conditions.

Now Gumbo Limbo is really a place we would highly recommend, as we really enjoyed the comfort of the Villas and the service, but do not expect a 5 star 24/24 service, and rooms with A/C, phone and Internet (actually if that's what you're looking for, I would not recommend Santa Teresa at all). I could read reviews where people were disappointed as they were expecting a higher level of service, but my guess is that they didn't ask for it!! we asked claning in the villa every other day, and the place was really tidy, our german neighbours asked claning every day, and they got it . We asked if we could have pancakes for breakfast even though they were not on the menu, and they cooked them for us... we always asked for what we wanted, and we always received much more than that.
Gumbo Limbo is a very small place too, there are 2 villas and 2 bedrooms, so you will not have the logistics of a large hotel, but you will feel at home, just like we did.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2010

My wife and I had a great time visiting Santa Teresa and Gumbo Limbo was the perfect place for our stay. I can’t stress how great Sonny, Michele and staff are. They made us feel welcome and by the time we left we felt like we had spent time with friends. Sonny took care of all of our arrangements. He had a taxi waiting at the airport in Tambor for our arrival. He arranged our quad rental, surf lessons (great place to learn,) a zip-line tour, and a boat trip that included snorkeling. He knew the back roads well, and gave us good directions and advice on which beaches to go to. With our quad, and Sonny's directions, we visited Playa Santa Teresa, Playa Carmen, Playa Hermosa, Playa Mal Pais, and Montezuma.

The grounds are amazing. We stayed in the Villa de Cruz room for six nights and really enjoyed the indoor/outdoor feel of the room. In fact, we spent the whole time with the doors open to the elements. The forest was directly behind our room, and in front, the stunning view of Playa Santa Teresa. In the mornings we woke up to birds and the sounds of the forest. A family of howler monkeys stayed in the trees above us for two of our nights there. The pool was just below our room, and also has a spectacular view. Since there aren't a large amount of rooms at Gumbo Limbo, you really do get to spend a lot of time feeling like you have the place to yourself. Each day, there were times we had the pool to ourselves.

The food in the restaurant is excellent. It felt like we had a personal chef on site. Because of Michele's cooking, we ate at Gumbo Limbo four out of the six nights we were there. He made us some lovely dishes. We had fresh Mahi Mahi, fresh tuna (oh man!), steak, linguini, gnocchi and more. We also enjoyed Betty's breakfasts and company in the mornings. She was very patient and forgiving of our limited Spanish. The fruit was fresh, the coffee was good, and so were her breakfast burritos.

The town of Santa Teresa is overall mellow, but it is not too hard to find some good night life. One night we enjoyed some live music at KiKa's, and another we went to D&Ns, a bar on the beach, where we found a good dj spinning records. Playa Santa Teresa is nice, and didn't feel crowded.

One thing, since the hotel is elevated in the hills overlooking Santa Teresa, I would recommend renting a car or quad. Though it is not far from the beach, the hill to the hotel is a little steep.

Overall, Gumbo Limbo and Santa Teresa exceeded our expectations. Sonny, Michele, Lisa & staff, thanks for a great time!

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2010

You will need a 4-Wheel-Drive to get up the hill - this small hotel is overlooking the town and ocean from the very top - fantastic view.

Two very contemporary (i.e. minimalistic) villas - we enjoyed the larger one - very private;
No bugs during our stay - due to the location you will enjoy a breeze;
Outdoor bathroom is fantastic - my daughter took her first shower with an iguana observing her...;
Sonny, the eternal surfer, and his Italian sidekick (who doubles as chef of the four table restaurant) will be your hosts;
Without a doubt, the best restaurant in town (typically, they cater only to the hotel guests - as a result, we enjoyed a 'private chef" during our stay;
Service of rooms (cleaning, making of beds, availability of towel should be more consistent)
Excellent "value' in comparison to other options in town.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Charlotte, North Carolina
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2010

Set on top of the hills overlooking Santa Teresa and the ocean below, Sonny and his staff have made an experience worth finding. The pictures about this place do not lie, it is amazing. Our group rented the place for the majority of the week for my wedding. Everyone associated with Gumbo Limbo made us feel right at home. We had our ceremony on a beach at another hotel, but everything else was done at this hotel (apps, dinner, cake cutting, and band). Sonny put us in contact with a wedding planner, Rebecca, which fulfilled all of our dreams. Michele is an amazing chef and he has the greatest, uplifting personality. We ate there twice, besides the night we grilled our fresh catch, once on arrival and then for the wedding dinner. Both times were stunningly good, no matter what we were eating. The guy can cook. We enjoyed the trip up the hill, but I could see where this wouldn't be for everyone, especially if you didn’t have a car. Also the rooms are open as the pictures show, so critters will greet you from time to time. But for us these things just enriched a great place with a great view. This place will always be one of our favorite hotels in the world. Not only because of our marriage, but due to its amazing, lasting impression it left on all of us. Kudos to Sonny, Michele, Betty, Eric and everyone at Gumbo Limbo. Hopefully we will be back someday soon.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Gumbo Limbo Villas

Address: 400 mtrs East and 200 mtrs South of Brunelas Hostel, Santa Teresa 60111, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #24 of 30 B&Bs / Inns in Santa Teresa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Gumbo Limbo Villas is a boutique bed & breakfast nestled in the hills of Playa Santa Teresa on Costa Rica's lush Nicoya peninsula. We offer 2 villas and 2 private rooms, each of them with amazing ocean views. We also have a beautiful infinity pool from where you can watch the sun set into the Pacific. Santa Teresa is one of the best surf spots in Costa Rica. We offer surf instruction/lessons and can provide surfboard rental. We are two childhood friends in our thirties from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Growing up our passions included travelling, surfing and making new friends. Hosting people comes naturally to us. Our main goal is to create a space where you can have fun and relax while surrounded by natural beauty. A place where you will be treated like a guest, not a client, and have the best possible time ever in Santa Teresa. To accomplish that we will provide you with the personal attention that you deserve and the comforts that you need. We want you to feel at home here in paradise... Come and join us... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gumbo Limbo Villas Hotel Santa Teresa
Gumbo Limbo Villas Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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