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“paradise and peace” 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 website
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Hotel amenities
Special Price
30% off room rate
Ranked #13 of 25 Hotels in Santa Teresa
New York, New York, United States
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“paradise and peace”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2012

My husband, kids and I have traveled to many places around the world and i've never felt compelled to write a review. All five of us simply love Pranamar. My husband and I went alone in January - to practice yoga and to learn how to surf - but we got so much more. We landed on one of the most remote and peaceful beaches in Costa Rica and in a resort that has the most open and friendly owners. Susan, Greg and Nancy are truly amazing people. Nancy's yoga class is unmatched - after practicing for 15 years in NYC, it is hard to find her style and in an open environment (while watching the Pacific Ocean waves crash in front of you). Susan helped us return to the area this summer, this time with our kids. We got back about two weeks ago and my kids, husband and I are still missing every moment of our time spent in this amazing place. Pranamar is peaceful, healing, perfect.

Room Tip: the villas are amazing.
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with family
    • 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 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, September 20, 2012
Hello to our favorite family ever! :)
Thanks for writing us....but really, we should be writing you! I miss your beautiful energy in yoga I miss your handsome loving husband....but those twin girls TORE out my heart! Thanks so much for being a part of Pranamar and for sharing your family and for all the love that you gave us!
Nancy feels very complimented that you are so enthusiastic about her teaching because you are such an amazing yoginni!
Have a wonderful year and make sure you stay in our lives. No matter where you are, you will always be in our hearts.
Love, Susan and Nancy and ALL of our Pranamar Family
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201 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    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 (66)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2012

Pranamar Villas is a lovely and idillic place to spend a few days in paradise. The rain season did not match this location. Fresh supplied towels never dried and smelled due to the humid climate. Fantastic was the Yoga session, that only experienced Yogis and beginner-Yogis that seek a challenge can keep up with, that takes place every morning for none-stop two hours. Appreciated would have been Yoga twice a day and half as advanced for all levels to match the 'inclusive'. The special outside Guru-Showers make the houses very open and accessible to everything and everyone. However, the overnight security guards were appreciated. Late August openings should be lowered in price and full payments should be refundable if the guest wishes to leave on the next day due to unmet expectations. We wish we'd experienced this resort in a dry season as we loved the idillic and calm and would have liked to experience what the pictures promised. We were disappointed about the reply when we addressed a view points to the reception. We couldn't help but be fully aware of the fact that this was end of season for Pranamar Villas.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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, September 13, 2012
Dear Rainy season Guests!

Yes, you are absolutely correct, the rainy season does mean that towels don't stay dry (even when delivered to you fresh) and things just feel WET. Its part of living in the tropics and something that one must consider when travelling during our rainy season.
If our yoga classes seem long it's because we do offer a long class.
But of course, one is always welcome to leave a bit earlier or when they feel adequately exercised! We do have beginner classes some afternoons, I wonder if you knew about this?
It's interesting, some of our rainy folk guests tell us they would never come any other time of the year, they so enjoy the cloudy days, warm water and our open air showers. All part of the ambiance I wanted to create because it is so rare when one can have an outdoor style shower all year round! If you are not a fan of the "hanging gardens' in the outdoor bathrooms, each villa also has an indoor, completely covered bathroom that is much more traditional. I personally find them rather boring, but perhaps that's why I moved to the tropics!!
We actually are only closing for 3 weeks, not because of the rains, but because there is maintenance that we must do every year without disturbing guests. But the rains do not stop us. Yogis and surfers find that the rain is not a deterrent. Roads can be bad and lightning a whole new experience but all part of the joy of the tropics!
Come on back in the summer, and by the way, you did have a discount in your rate. We have different rates in our high season months.
Thank you for your input, sorry to say, Mother nature is out of my control!
Happy sunny days.
Susan Money, Owner
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venezuela
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2012

I was working in San Jose for the week and because of some comments about the new Costa Rican trends in hotels with a serenity environment and yoga classes, I decided to escape to Pranamar. It was one of the best decision I made in a long time. I normally travel a lot for bussiness and pleasure, so i am really experienced but the level of services, friendliness and tranquility this place offers, makes me want to come back very soon. I was pleasantly surprised with this hotel and its infrastructure. Despite I was by myself I enjoyed every minute. The personnel was always ready to help me in any need I had. Definitively I recommend this place. Don't come alone, this place is worthy to be shared.Don't miss to take the yoga classes and massages outside your bungalow, it is just awesome =).

  • Stayed August 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
newalbum, yoga director/co-owner at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, November 24, 2012
Muchas Gracias! Thanks so much for putting up a great review and spending some time with us at Pranamar. We know the journey here is sometimes long, but we are certain that it will be completely worth the traveling to get to this little paradise on the beach. So glad you enjoyed our classes and great food and hospitality! We hope your next trip to Costa Rica will include Pranamar Villas! We'll be waiting to make your vacation the best!!
Pura vida,
Nancy Goodfellow
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Norfolk, Virginia
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2012

This review is posted by a savvy and frequent international traveller. My recent trip to Costa Rica (CR) marks my 110th international trip. Our stay at Pranamar was the most beautiful and relaxing vacation ever! If I had to describe our stay in one word, that word would be ‘perfect’. Where do I begin? [note to self - open thesauraus here; I’m going to need it]

I found out about Pranamar via an online article about yoga retreats in CR; when I checked out the hotel’s web site, I was mesmerized. Rarely does a hotel surpass the hype on their web site – Pranamar breaks this rule; it is truly stunning!!

My contact began with a phone call to Larissa (handles reservations); friendly & knowledgeable. After that, our communications where via e-mail (I’m the pesky type that asks lots of questions). With a tight connection in San Jose, we weren’t sure if we would make our flight to Tambor (airport closest to hotel), but Larissa took care of everything. She had a driver, Alex, waiting for us in San Jose to transfer us to the smaller airport (for Nature Air flight); if we missed our flight (which we did not), the driver was prepared to drive us 1.5 hours to the ferry. Alex took us to Nature Air’s terminal (about 20 min drive), walked us to the Nature Air counter, and did not leave us until he had confirmed all was OK with our flight to Tambor; now THAT'S service! Upon our arrival in Tambor, another driver, Jose, gave us a friendly welcome and whisked us to Pranamar (50 min drive).

We stayed in one of the two oceanfront villas (#2); it was spectacular. Two floors: living room, full kitchen, bathroom (with the most a-MAZ-ing walk-in shower) and deck on the first floor; bedroom with 2 twin beds, bedroom with king bed, bathroom, and deck (with hammock – favorite spot for the week) on the second floor. Less than 100 yards from the ocean. A/C is provide in the bedrooms, but we chose not to use it the 7 days we were at Pranamar; wanted to (1) ‘go native’ and (2) enjoy the comforting sounds of nature (ocean surf, frogs, birds, etc). There are also 3 bungalows (2 garden, 1 oceanfront; all one floor) and 4 poolside villas, each with a living room, 2 bedrooms and 2 decks (note: Villa #3 is poolside, but also has a view of the ocean). We love that Pranamar is small; not some huge, impersonal resort.

I’ve been a devoted yoga student for the last 10 years, and a yoga teacher for the last 1.5 years, so yoga was one of the reasons I chose Pranamar. Nancy, their resident yoga teacher is one of the best I have ever experienced! Blending philosophy, chanting and asana, along with the ocean view from the open yoga shala, her classes were challenging for the body and nourishing for the soul. When she brought her harmonium to class on the second day, I knew she was something special:) Namaste, Nancy!!

You can be as active as you want, or just unplug and unwind. We did a little of both. When we weren’t relaxing in the hammock, or walking the beach (practically deserted in August), we rented an ATV for half-a-day and explored the surrounding area, went on a zip-line tour (brothers-in-law, Carlos and Selmen made this experience so much fun), took a surfing lesson (instructor Ismael rocks!) and walked from one end of Santa Teresa to the other (just a tiny surfing village). Our favorite evening activity was sitting on the beach and watching the sunset.

The hotel’s restaurant, Buddha Eyes, was an epicurean find. Fresh ingredients, delicious food, hearty portions and friendly service are a powerful combination. Breakfast is included with the room rate (plenty of variety); we worked our way through the smoothie menu in the afternoons, and dinner each night offered 3-4 appetizers, 4-6 entrees, and 2-4 dessserts. We only had lunch one day (we were always full from breakfast), and it was equally delicious.

The service from the staff was flawless. Everyone greets you by name every time they see you; all questions were answered quickly; any wish was their command. Even small ‘issues’ were resolved quickly (need a hair dyer? delivered in 5 min. microwave broken? replaced in 2 hours).

We booked massages on our last day. Sebastian is THE BOMB!! His massage style is deep (at my request), slow and methodical. Staff will set up the massage wherever you want (on the deck of your villa, inside the villa, etc), but opt to have your massage in the little massage shack at the entrance to the beach area. Between Sebastian’s style and the sound of the ocean surf, I actually forgot where I was; each time Sebastian would move to another part of my body, it would bring me back to reality, and I would think “Oh, I’m still on the massage table??” Afterwards, my husband commented that we should have booked massages for the first day, because it would have helped us to get into the relaxed/chill mode much quicker; note to self - remember this tip for our next visit.

There are no TVs at Pranamar, which we surprisingly liked. There is free wi-fi in the restaurant area, so we were able to keep up with daily news and those occasional pesky e-mails. For entertainment, we watched movies on our iPads. How am I going to re-create the sound of the ocean surf and the gentle blowing breeze the next time I use my iPad during a layover at whatever airport?

For anyone headed to Pranamar, I do have one recommendation. Due to the fact the hotel is a one-hour (hot) walk from town, consider renting a 4 Wheel Drive vehicle, an ATV (can rent them from the hotel or in Santa Teresa) or a bike (in Santa Teresa), so you’ll have transportation if you want to explore. While the hotel does offer transportation, it gets expensive if you want to use it daily.

In all my travels, I have only cried once when I had to leave a place that touched my soul; and that place was Rome (Italy). The day we left Pranamar, I stood on the upper deck of our villa and cried for the second time. We are already planning to return in 2013 …

Thank you to the owners and staff of Pranamar Villas; you made us feel like members of a very special family. Pura Vida!

Room Tip: Villa 3 is a poolside villa (cheaper than an oceanfront villa) with a view of the ocean.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
newalbum, co-owner/yoga teacher at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, August 27, 2012
Dear friend of Pranamar and friend to us,

We so enjoyed meeting you, practicing with, and serving you and your husband during your vacation with us. I wanted to write you personally and tell you how honored I am that you were so inspired by my classes. Each day I strive to offer my best and share my inspirations and dreams with my students. I hope you will return soon to stay with us. Until we meet again, be well and prosperous and happy!
Many blessings,
Nancy
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palm desert, ca
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2012

The staff, accomodations, food, yoga, surf instruction were all top notch. The intimacy of a smaller resort made for a truly special experience. I am a studio owner in southern california and I am so impressed that I will host a retreat at this spectacular resort next year.

Room Tip: I looked at each type of room and all looked to me to be quite comfortable. Its simply a matter of...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
newalbum, co-owner/yoga teacher at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, August 27, 2012
We can't wait for your return with your students to our paradise on the beach! THanks for writing this review and we will be playing and practicing together soon. Be well and thank you again,
Nancy
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Lisbon, Portugal
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2012

Best hotel during our costa rica trip.
The bungalows were amazing. Right by the beach, spacious, comfortable and well decorated. The details made you feel like everything about it was thought over.
The restaurant was spectacular - priced reasonably and delicious.
The yoga pavilion was really pretty. The spaces between the villas and bungalows had a million different flowers.
You can grab a surf board and walk out the back gate to the beach, awesome location.
If you go to Santa Teresa you should definitely stay there. (see price tip below).

Room Tip: the villas right by the pool might be too exposed. We asked for a reduced rainy season price, and t...
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  • Stayed August 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.
newalbum, co-owner/yoga director at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, August 27, 2012
Hola friends,

Thanks for taking the time to write this review. We are so glad that you enjoyed your stay with us at Pranamar. Your happiness makes us smile and keep working hard to bring our guests the best vacation ever. Hope you'll come back soon!
Pura Vida,
Nancy
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Los Angeles, California
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2012

I stayed at Pranamar Villas via the Vajra Sol Yoga Retreat, and felt the Villas deserved their own review. To keep it short:

Location: As close as possible to the beach, walking distance from surfing, tide pools, and monkeys. Some of the best sunsets you can see. Not exactly the easiest place to get to, however it is worth it once you are there.

Amenities: yes. Just kidding. They have everything a hotel normally has as far as I know. PLUS they have surf boards for rent, a yoga studio, and the people at the front desk are all really great at organizing whatever it is you want to do (surf lesson, stand up paddle lesson, ATV, hiking, zip lining, etc).

Restaurant: The food is fantastic, but let's talk about the smoothies! If you go, definitely drink lots of smoothies because they are perfect. After a week, I know at least half of the restaurant staff by name and visa versa. There were a lot of extreme food restrictions amongst our group and it only took a day or two before they would automatically make sure we were all getting what we needed (vegan gluten free soy allergy? no problem). Normally I am not much of a barfly, but I actually spent a lot of time hanging out at the bar chatting with whomever was around. Every single person was warm and friendly.

Random Extra Awesome Thing: I did not need to carry cash or an ID with me all week. They remained in the safe (yes, safety deposit box provided) unless I left the Villas. Everything gets charged to your room including taxis and you get an itemized bill at the end of the week. This was pretty awesome.

Final Comment: I arrived on a solo vacation, and left with a lot of friends. Not only those who were part of the Vajra Sol retreat, but the hotel staff, surf instructors, honeymooners, etc. that I met along the way. I really think that the type of person who finds a surf/yoga vacation appealing will find themselves surrounded by like minded people.

Room Tip: All the rooms are great, I think it depends more on which size you want to choose.
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  • Stayed July 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.
newalbum, yoga director/co-owner at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this review, August 9, 2012
Dear friends,
We are thrilled that you enjoyed your Vajra sol Adventure week with us at Pranamar. Not much could be better then surfing, yoga, beautiful beaches, great people and an awesome hotel. We love Vajra Sol and are so honored to be working with them. Thanks for sharing your wonderful experience with others on Trip Advisor. We really enjoy hearing that our hard work, dedication to excellence and happy mind-set is appreciated by our wonderful guests. We hope to see you soon for another unforgettable week at Pranamar.
Gracias,
Nancy
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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 ( Wi-Fi ) 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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