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“Pranamar is more than a place to stay; it's a life-changing experience filled with love, food, yoga, and surfing!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat

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Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Playa Hermosa, Santa Teresa 154, Costa Rica   |  
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Hotel amenities
Special Price
30% off room rate
Ranked #12 of 25 hotels in Santa Teresa
Boulder
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Pranamar is more than a place to stay; it's a life-changing experience filled with love, food, yoga, and surfing!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 29, 2012

Having just returned from ten nights at Pranamar, my heart is aching as I think about the amazing experience I had in Costa Rica. I was not ready to leave. I was at Pranamar for a yoga and surfing retreat with Vajra Sol Yoga Adventures (search for Vajra Sol and look for a separate review) and spent an additional four nights at Pranamar after the retreat was over. This was not enough! If you can spend two weeks here, or longer, do it! You will ease into a life that is happy, warm, and full of amazing people, yoga, surfing, and food!

I spent six nights in Bungalow 2 and four nights in Villa 2. The bungalows are simple, but elegant. Bungalow 2 has a partial ocean view, a huge deck for lounging, a kitchenette, a separate sleeping and living space, and a fun outdoor shower area, just off the bathroom. The outdoor shower area is private and decorated with plants, rocks, and a statue of Ganesh. There's also an occasional crab in the shower area! Don't let this scare you, though. They are very shy and quick to get out of your way. I loved the peacefulness of this bungalow. It was also very private, away from the pool and main walking areas. I slept with the air conditioning on because I would close the windows at night to avoid the bugs (which there are not many) and to sleep in a little later. By later, I mean 6:00 am, after the sun has risen and the howler monkeys have stopped howling. After six nights in my sweet bungalow, I had the opportunity to move into Villa 2. It's very close to the water and has an unobstructed view (aside from palm trees) of the ocean and beach. The Villas are magnificent! They have two bedrooms and two bathrooms, a living room, and a full kitchen. However, their best feature is the upstairs outdoor balcony, complete with hammock, sitting area, sofa, and fans. It's really a dreamy place to relax during the hot afternoons or after dinner, under the stars. I could see the ocean from my bed in the morning. Does it get any better than that? And the nature shower in Villa 2 is divine. It's enclosed, but outdoors, filled with plants, statues, a bench, and a rain shower. Ah... By the way, the bungalows and villas are well stocked with bath towels, beach towels, biodegradable and natural shampoo, conditioner, and soaps. Villas 1 & 2 and Bungalow 1 are beachfront.

During the retreat, I surfed for the first time in my life. I was hooked immediately! After my four lessons during the retreat, I took two more private surf lessons (booked by the front desk staff) with the amazing Ismael from Del Mar Surf Camp, which operates out of Pranamar. I also worked with Ismael during the retreat. I could write an entire review about my surfing guru, Ismael, a truly gifted teacher that reads his students perfectly. He knew just when to push me and when to take things back a notch. I can still hear him calmly telling me, “Eyes forward. Relax.” You are a lucky person to spend time in the water with this man. You will have Ismael’s undivided attention for two hours, and he will teach you about life and the waves and you will walk away from every lesson feeling like you’ve just been given an amazing gift.

A review of Pranamar would not be complete without mentioning the staff. It is the staff that makes Pranamar exceptional. They have all the attentiveness of the staff you might find at a Four Seasons, but they are much warmer, sweeter, and truly invested in your happiness while you are at Pranamar. I looked forward to saying hello to the front desk staff (Dago, Dio, Andres) every day. They were quick to help you with your plans. However, they always went a step further, like reconfirming my shuttle ride back to the ferry. The restaurant staff is equally amazing. They will learn your name and your preferences quickly. Johan, Will, and Steban, behind the bar, always greet you with a smile. Servers Monica, Ana, Michelle, and Alvaro, are patient and kind. One evening, I wasn’t feeling well, and they made me a special ginger tea. By the time I left Pranamar, I considered many of the staff members my friends and the sent me off with a hug and a kiss on the cheek.

I took yoga classes with Sandra (of Vajra Sol Yoga Adventures), Nancy, and Andy. All classes were exceptional and the yoga shala is spectacular. Taking classes in the shala is a spiritual experience (as is surfing on Playa Hermosa) and my one regret is that I was not able to take more yoga classes while I was there. I went to Pranamar to deepen my yoga practice, and one can surely do that there, it just didn’t work out for me this time because I was captivated by surfing.

I am a vegetarian and I was completely satisfied with every meal I had at Pranamar’s restaurant. Everything is so fresh and prepared with care. The presentation is always beautiful. I am normally a healthy eater, but every meal at Pranamar was clean and healthy – even the divine lentil burger with fries! Breakfast, which is included with your stay, always comes with a fresh smoothie. I loved this unique touch. Every smoothie was different and delicious. The restaurant has a water dispenser on the bar that includes cold water with lemon and lime or mint. I often stopped by the restaurant to grab a cold drink. Little touches like this make Pranamar special. They have really thought about the little things that make guests comfortable.

I could write a few more paragraphs about Pranamar (it’s THAT amazing), but this review is getting long. Here’s a few other things that made my Pranamar visit great: a terrific massage from Delores, laundry service (much needed after about 6 days), friendly cleaning and grounds staff, impeccable landscaping, security (you will feel so safe at Pranamar),a warm and relaxing pool (loved evening dips, just before dinner), and an overall sense of tranquility. Pranamar is located past Santa Teresa on the Nicoya Peninsula. It is remote and in general, this is an isolated area. There are very few paved roads on the Peninsula. Getting there is an adventure, but this is part of the experience. I cannot wait until my return visit Pranamar, which I hope is sooner rather than later.

Room Tip: If you want an ocean view, book Villa 1 or 2 or Bungalow 1. If you're on a budget, book Garden B...
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, co-owner/yoga teacher at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, May 4, 2012
Namaste Jen,
My first word is "wow"...your review is so full of enthusiasm and joy and praise. We really want to thank you for taking the time to express yourself and tell everyone about the amazing week you had with us at Pranamar. We really appreciate the time you spent and the effort you made with this great letter of recommendations and positivity. We are so honored to have been chosen by Vajra Sol Yoga Adventures for their yoga/surf retreats and we love meeting so many adventurous, fun-loving people like yourself! We hope you will come back to our little piece of paradise on the beach and join us for more Yoga, surfing and good eating. THank you once again for your kind words and thoughtful review. Be well and stay positive. Pura Vida!
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194 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    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 (62)
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English first
Altadena
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2012

I stayed at Pranamar for a week in April - the property has a lovely pool that winds through the villas. It was a great place to relax with friends after surfing. It can be a little noisy for the villas on the pool (villas 4 and 6) during the day, but not at all a problem at night. The food was excellent and varied throughout our stay; I especially loved all the different smoothies! The resort is located easy walking distance from Playa Hermosa, which, during the week we were there, had gentle reliable waves. It was a great place to learn to surf. The resort partners with Del Mar Surf for lessons and board rentals, and they were really really great teachers and inspiring surfers. They each had great stories about learning to surf and their best and worst experiences on the water; don't miss the chance to get to know them better. I also enjoyed the yoga classes at the yoga shala. They were challenging and playful and I really had a great time practicing with Nancy. I am, of course, planning my return with family in tow!

Room Tip: Rooms on the garden/ocean are quieter than those on the pool
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, co-owner/yoga teacher at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, May 4, 2012
Dear Sacha,
Thanks so much for posting a review for us at Pranamar. We love our work and we do our best to make everyone feel at home and have a wonderful experience. We are so glad you enjoyed your time with us and it would be so great to have you return with your family as well! If there is anything we can do to make your next stay with us even better, just ask. Maybe a yoga class for the whole family?Or a family surf lesson! Hope to see you back soon. Pura Vida!
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Berlin, Berlin, Germany
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2012

just wanted to share that Nancy's yoga classes are phenomenal - no matter which level you are - you will find deeper connection, serenity, elevation and certainly some kind of awakening in your practice here!
not only is it one of the most beautiful settings I have ever practiced yoga in (and trust me, I have been practicing yoga in a lot of amazing places all over the world!) but the way Nancy manages to create such a loving atmosphere that makes everyone feel welcome just blew me away.
My friend and I who came to the classes almost every morning during our stay there in January are both yoga teachers as well - and there was something distinct, a new philosophical aspect, a personal insight, a fresh approach to get into an asana to learn day after day. In fact, we took a bunch of our inspiration from these classes back home to our communities and students - and that is what I feel yoga is all about -to allow yourself to be inspired by others and share the love for the practice with each other.

The advanced sessions can be quite sweaty and take you into some poses you never thought you could do - so if you are just starting with yoga I recommend the all levels morning sessions in which Nancy makes sure that everyone receives proper assistance and instruction. Or another nice treat, especially for beginners, are the slow flow classes taught by Andy in the afternoons here, in which you'll ease into your practice by aligning breath and movement.

so even if you can't afford to stay at the hotel itself or book a full retreat here, you will surely have an experience that feels very close to a full yoga retreat experience if you only come for the morning sessions here! and you can always top it off with a yummie smoothie such as an almond glaze, hang out with your friends, and maybe even stay for lunch. and then it'll be almost time for sunset surf... ;) enjoy!!

oh, and also don't forget to look at the white board or ask Nancy about any kind of extracurricular events such as afternoon ayurveda classes, full moon chanting sessions, dance lessons...something fun is always happening here!

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
pranamar, Owner at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, April 21, 2012
Well your beautiful letter made my day even more beautiful! I must admit , that even thought I am the owner of Pranamar and the Mother of the yoga teacher, Nancy Goodfellow, I attend 90% of her classes and she is an inspiration to ME! I leave class feeling recharged, loved and full of energy and then I think "is this just me?" But thanks to folks like you, I am starting to realize that Nancy affects everyone in this way. Yoga is her calling; she has always been a kind hearted person who seems to see the best in everyone....and as a MOM, it is so rewarding to see your child find their "place in time". As the owner of Pranamar, well, its simply an added bonus
But THANK YOU, THANK YOU for taking the time to write and share your thoughts and feelings.
YOur space is being "held" for you, if only in our hearts!
namaste, Susan Money
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Nashville
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2012

Pranamar is paradise. It's a luxury destination that hands down beats out the finest of the hotels (JW Marriot & Four Seasons) weve stayed at in CR with eco-minded charm & hospitality that's poured out at every level. We've traveled around the entire western half of CR & stumbled upon Pranamar by complete luck. They only had one villa open for one night & we'd of paid 3x what it cost to stay there for our entire trip! If you're into luxury, yoga, great surf outside your villa & gourmet food, this is your destination. Stop searching & book this place while it's still available!! This is the Costa Rica experience you've dreamed about...

  • Stayed April 2012, 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, co-owner/yoga director at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, May 23, 2012
Thanks Melissa for your great review and inspiring and gracious comments. We are all working so hard (and having lots of fun doing it) to create the best experience for our guests. When we receive reviews like your's it makes us all feel so grateful and appreciated. We hope that you will join us in paradise again very soon! A warm and heartfelt 'gracias' from Pranamar!
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Durham, NC
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2012

I stayed in a bungalow at Pranamar during a yoga/surf retreat and loved everything about the hotel. The service, the food, the massage, the facilities were all fantastic! I would love the opportunity to go back some day.

Room Tip: If you like meeting other guests and visiting with them, I recommend a villa near the pool. If you w...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, Owner at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, April 16, 2012
Dear Guest
THANK YOU for taking the time to write this lovely note about us. I dont think people can possibly realize how much it means to an owner to receive good news! Honestly, this is my third hotel i have built in Costa rica (sold the other 2) and I am still like a little kid that really wants to please everyone. We make mistakes, thats for sure. But most people are loving and forgiving when they "get' that you really care. WE really care......so thank you with all my heart!
Susan Money, owner
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Sandpoint, Idaho
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2012

We have been going to this area for 7 years. This is the first time we have stayed at Pranamar. It was the first time that I wanted to stay longer. The food was great, service above and beyond the call and the location fantastic. A great balance of gracious accomodation and value. We are planning on a month stay at Pranamar next year.

  • Stayed January 2012, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, Owner at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, April 16, 2012
Hello guests
Warms my heart to read "a real Jewel" but i must say, it is happy, loving, open hearted people like you who are the real JEWELS.
Thank you from all of us at Pranamar!
Warmly
susan Money, owner
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San Francisco, California, United States
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2012

Greg and Susan have done an amazing job creating such a warm and welcoming atmosphere for guests lucky enough to experience the Pranamar Villas and Yoga retreat. Our room was decorated in such a way that made us feel like royalty. The landscaping is gorgeous! The pool is relaxing and lovely. The food is delightful. It is paradise. If you want to live well and experience Costa Rica the right way then stay at the Pranamar. You won't regret it. Thank you Greg and Susan!

  • Stayed December 2011, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, Owner at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, April 16, 2012
WOW, Im delighted you enjoyed yourself so much. And you put a big smile on GREGS face because he takes such pride in the gardens. With no public water, it is a true feat to keep our gardens green in the dry season.. But thank you for noticing, thank you for sharing....come back and visit us please...
Susan and greg , owners
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Additional Information about Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat

Address: Playa Hermosa, Santa Teresa 154, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Teresa
#11 Romantic Hotel in Santa Teresa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Costa Rica’s Premier Ocean Front HotelPranamar Ocean Front Villas and Yoga Retreat, an intimate, consciously designed oceanfront hotel recently built on the spectacular beach of Playa Santa Teresa, offers guests tropical beauty and nature in an exotic and friendly ambience. Along with world-class surfing and our top-quality Yoga classes, numerous activities and adventures await you.Immerse yourself in the beauty and ease into nature’s rhythm as Pranamar’s experienced and caring staff take care of all the details, making sure your vacation is perfect.Our hotel offers a variety of accommodations to fit your needs and desires: our luxurious two-storey villas built around a free-form saltwater pool have private lounging areas, tropical gardens and boast spectacular views, while the ecologically-constructed bungalows offer tropical simplicity with sea breezes, spacious decks and views of the ocean.Pranamar’s beautifully designed open-air restaurant and tea lounge specializes in healthy, delicious cuisine using organic fruits and vegetables, local fresh fish, seafood and organic meats.We invite you to step into the rhythm of nature, breath in the energy of the sea and discover... PRANAMAR!!! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pranamar Villas And Yoga Retreat Hotel Santa Teresa
Pranamar Villas And Yoga Retreat Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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