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“mostly good” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Casa Zen Guest House & Yoga Center

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Casa Zen Guest House & Yoga Center
Playa Santa Teresa | 50 mts West from Super Costa, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica   |  
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Hong Kong, China
Top Contributor
229 reviews 229 reviews
148 hotel reviews
Reviews in 146 cities Reviews in 146 cities
195 helpful votes 195 helpful votes
“mostly good”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

We stayed for a week but unfortunately I was ill for most of the time so really just spent time recuperating. For this purpose the hostel was good as it had a quiet vibe and lots of relaxing space.
As mentioned by others the rooms are basic, we had a double room downstairs with fan. The room was quite spare but nicely painted. Size was quite good, it came with fan, it was quite dark but i did not mind as helped me sleep, the bed was a bit lumpy. Bathrooms are shared but there are lots of them and they were cleaned well daily. There is only cold water.
As they have closed their restaurant there is a communal kitchen inside and another outside although almost everyone uses the inside one as it well equipped. The outside one is useful though as they close the kitchen and reception at 8pm. We never needed anyone at night but it would be interesting if you did.
Breakfast was included, it was toast and fruit with coffee and was very nice.
It is located very close to the beach in the middle of St Teresa so it is a good location in a very spread out town (about 20 mins walk to the bank and main section). The beach is nice but very much a surfing location, swimming is possible but better when the winds are making for large swell.
There are good communal areas with hammocks, plenty of tables and chairs. Wi-fi. There is also a computer with a charge. Good book swap. They also sell water for same price as supermarket.
Staff were mixed. The owner was not there for the majority of our stay, she did arrive on our last couple of nights but did not introduce herself and seemed to leave it to the staff which is fine. The manager Minor was very nice. Rosie was very friendly but Ada tended to be very cold and unhappy (was very nice on our arrival so not sure what happened after that) - she strangely told us one night after dinner we had to move rooms the next day if we stayed (we had told them we would be staying at least 5 nights) but they managed to keep us in the room after much discussion and on another occasion she seemed reluctant to agree to our bedding being changed (after 3 nights) which we felt was strange given they refuse to give any discount for longer stays (in that case they should be willing to change sheets and towels daily).
Overall we thought it was good value for St Teresa but average in comparison to what we have received in other parts of Costa Rica.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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88 people have reviewed this hotel

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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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
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English first
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2013

I won't rehash much of what many others have said. Casa Zen is a small, relaxed, well-maintained beach hostel in a great location. The upstairs hammock/yoga space is great for relaxing, the beach is a stone's throw away, and there is a supermarket and two tasty restaurants within 100 feet. It can be a bit noisy (trucks and dogs at night/early morning) and breakfast is a bit basic (fruit and toast), but those are relatively minor issues. The apartment is great for a couple, especially for a longer stay. Yoga was great too and Jamie is a fantastic instructor for beginners or those who are more experienced. Great spot at a great beach.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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San Francisco, California
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2013

I've reviewed CZ twice before but given recent changes, here is an update.

Casa Zen remains a standout option among all others in Santa Theresa. Room rates (private or shared) remain very good and the atmosphere is hard to beat. As many other visitors have noted it is generally a very chill space attracting a variety of individual, couple, and group travelers from all over the globe.

The major change to CZ since last year is that the restaurant has closed. The upside of this is that the former restaurant kitchen is now open to use by all visitors from 8am to 8pm, providing a much improved situation for those on a budget who wish to cook for themselves. Another side-effect of this is, the evenings at Casa Zen are even more chilled out than they were before, since there are no groups coming in at night for dinner -- the separate dining room (rancho) is effectively dedicated to guests now as well. For those lamenting the closure of the restaurant, nearby Casa Del Mar (25m away) has expanded its kitchen and restaurant (including a wood fired oven) with a bar to offer a stumbling-distance option for drinks and dinner.

If you're a surfer like me and want access to your breakfast/pre-surf chow, stick it in the old communal kitchen fridge, so you can get at it before dawn-patrol surfs, which are typically the best conditions here. And when you get back from that early morning surf, the complimentary breakfast will be there waiting for you.

CZ remains exceptionally well staffed and tended. The (numerous) shared bathrooms and showers are cleaned daily. Your room will have its linens changed and be swept out occasionally during an extended stay, but if you want it done more frequently, just ask. I found twice per week to be fine.

They continue to offer laundry service, board rental (beginner gear), and bike loan/rental.

Don't forget to sign the guest book!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Mayrhofen, Austria
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2013

we stayed in a really big privat room, which was very clean. kelly and the whole staff is very friendly and helpfull!!!
the house is about 100 m away from the beach!
they offer yoga lessons all day, had a good one with jenny!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Luis Obispo, California
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2013

Casa Zen has been by far the best place for the value we have stayed in here in Costa Rica. Our room was private double room and was clean and simple - just what we were looking for. There are multiple areas to hang out as well as wonderful hammocks to lounge in.

The breakfast was absolutely perfect - fruit, toast with butter and jam and coffee (or tea). The community kitchen was easily the nicest we have ever seen as it used to be the professional kitchen for a restaurant that used to be there. It was also well stocked with cookbooks and a variety of spices.

We didn't take any yoga classes as we were on a budget but heard from other visitors that they were very good.

Casa Zen was so close to the beach - a 3-min barefoot walk away! It was also well placed in between the sprawling, long road of Santa Teresa. The grocery store was directly across the street.

Overall, an excellent option and the best value you'll find in Santa Teresa!

  • Stayed May 2013, 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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Oslo, Oslo, Norway
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2013

We stayed in the apartment which was good value on a location very close to the beach. The included breakfast of fruit and toast were among the best we had in Costa rica. The staff are very friendly and helpful.

The hammock area just outside was a great place to hang out. This area is also used for the yoga classes which restricts the time available here. We practiced yoga with three different instructors and all three were very good.

The apartment is connected to three other rooms by thin doors (locked, but lots of potential noise pollution as we noticed when some very chatty neighboors moved in). The floors in the apartment were pretty dirty so we had to keep our shoes on indoors.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aussersihl, Zurich, Switzerland
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

we found casa zen to be a very nice little place to be. the housebeach is 100m away and quite a spot. the best beach is playa hermosa and worth the trip (5k). the rooms are clean (allthough hot, no AC), the service is very helpful and forthcoming. big and juicy breakfast is inclusive. we spent 34$ on a double, which was more than ok for Santa Teresa. you can use a very accomodating kitchen with all the knicks and knacks, the bathrooms/restrooms are very tidy and clean. it can be a bit loud in the general meeting area during evenings, but overall - it was ok. you can take private yoga classes, rent bikes or surfboards, there is a supermarket right around the corner. even if the flair was a bit nouveau hippiesque for our liking - the friendly and always helpful service sure as made up for it and we liked it very much.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about Casa Zen Guest House & Yoga Center

Address: Playa Santa Teresa | 50 mts West from Super Costa, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 46 Specialty lodging in Santa Teresa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Santa Teresa and Mal Pais are rather remote beach towns, and that is what makes them so special! Thankfully, even though we are a little off the beaten path, there are still quite a few services available to visitors. This is a excellent area to relax practicing of Yoga and Surf.On the first floor, we have six private rooms, ideal for single travelers, couples or pairs of friends. The rooms have either a double bed or two single beds. We also have two larger private rooms on the first floor, each with beds for three people. Scroll down for photos and prices for our private rooms. Upstairs you will find the apartment plus three additional rooms with varying capacities, featuring exterior doors as well as interior doors connecting to the apartment. An abundance of shared bathrooms are also located on the first floor (there are many to choose from and they are always clean!).We also have two well-equipped communal kitchens, including our signature chef’s kitchen, complete with a professional quality stove, microwave, blenders, and a giant stainless steel refrigerator. We offer a amazing Yoga deck with every day class. Our helpful, bilingual staff is always ready to help plan other tours and activities in the area, including surf lessons, canopy tours, stand up paddleboarding (SUP), visits to nearby waterfalls, fishing, sailing, snorkeling, horseback riding, ATV rentals and more. We can also assist you with restaurant recommendations, reservations and travel planning, so your trip can be totally relaxing and worry-free! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Casa Zen Hotel Santa Teresa
Casa Zen Guest House & Yoga Center Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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