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“Perfect in every way!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Blue Surf Sanctuary

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Blue Surf Sanctuary
Santa Teresa~ Mal Pais, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Special Rate
$115 (USD)
Ranked #3 of 31 Santa Teresa B&B and Inns
Northern California
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Perfect in every way!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2009

We just got back from a wonderful week at Blue Surf Sanctuary, and I can't say enough good things about our experience. The bungalows are extremely well-appointed and they are even nicer than they appear in the photos. They are brand-new and very high quality, with extremely comfortable beds, awesome showers and bathrooms, and wonderful balconies for relaxing with a book in the afternoon. Pia (the manager at Blue Surf) is wonderful and took care of everything we needed, and her staff is uniformly hard-working and conscientious. We woke up each morning to a fresh pot of rich Costa Rican coffee and delicious tropical fruit. After our morning surf lesson, we were served a huge breakfast of eggs, gallo pinto, pancakes, fruit, toast, juice, coffee, etc. The outdoor kitchen is relaxed and is a perfect place to hang out by the pool. The private patio and pool area at Blue Surf is a huge plus - it was really nice to have such a pretty and private place to spend time outside when we weren't on the beach. The pool is the perfect size and temperature for a refreshing dip any time of day. We were surprised by the variety and quality of the restaurants in Santa Teresa (and if you rely on Pia to make your reservations, you can't go wrong - she knows every restaurant in town). We had amazing Thai, Italian, Costa Rican, and Japanese cuisine. One night we ordered pizza in and hung out at Blue Surf for the evening, which is a nice option to have - you feel like you're in your own private backyard, rather than at a hotel! The yoga and Pilates classes are in an amazing open-air studio at Flor Blanca, which is a fancy resort about 5 minutes down the beach. Every person we interacted with, from our surf instructors (Miguel and Quique), to our massage therapist (Stefan), to the staff at Blue Surf (Pia, Mimi, Maria, Niko) were truly wonderful people who embodied the pura vida attitude. Gloria took an amazing amount of time to send prompt and detailed answers to all of my questions prior to our trip, and we were not disappointed. I can't believe that beaches like this still exist in the world - not a single piece of litter, very uncrowded, warm, clear water, perfect waves, gorgeous tidepools, amazing sunsets. If you are considering a trip to this area, I highly recommend staying at the Santa Teresa end of town, and not near Mal Pais. We came very close to choosing Beija Flor, which we stopped by while we were there, and I am so glad we didn't stay there! I'm sure it's a nice place, but the location is awful - right on the road and the closest beach is sort of gross and crowded. Blue Surf is within walking distance of the restaurants and shops in town, but it's not on the main drag, which can be very crowded and dusty from the dirt road. It is not right on beach - you have to walk down a short dirt road to get to the beach, but this is not a big deal and you can be on the beach in about two minutes. I highly recommend Blue Surf to anyone who wants a relaxing beach vacation with some great surfing, yoga, hiking, and wonderful local cuisine!

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
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129 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    116
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
London
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2009

My wife and I recently stayed at the Blue Surf Sanctuary. From the moment we arrived we were made to feel incredibly welcome at what is probably one of the best value for money accommodations in Santa Teresa - a largely unspoilt stretch of surf, beach and nature on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. The domestic flight from San Jose to Tambor is easy - we were on the beach by 930am, Pia or Gloria can arrange a comfortable transfer to the sanctuary (a collection of 4 beautiful bungalows, small pool and lounge area with TV and DVD) and the surf lessons were really sympathetic to my standard, intuitive but also gently pushed me to get to a better standard than i could have expected. The resort is well positioned at a less crowded part of the beach, near a couple of great eating spots and every night we slept brilliantly in the modern and clean bungalows that are on a par with some of the best and roomiest i've stayed in. We hired a quad for a day which is a must do, or just bikes - which you can take further into town to sample some of the cuisine at other hotels or restaurants. We're both very happy that Gloria responded to all our questions about the trip so quickly and thoroughly. Would recommend to anyone with a passion for learning to surf with a desire to rest comfortably afterwards. Philip & Maddi

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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London
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2009

Santa Teresa is a long way from London but the team at Blue Surf made the trip worth while!

The rooms are beautiful, huge beds, great bathrooms, great kitchen facilities and only 30 seconds from one of the most beautiful beaches I have seen. We were also very lucky to have really consistent surf while we were there.

While in ST you must rent an ATV and take the back road to Montezuma, dine at Brisas del Mar, Playa de Artistas, Soda piedro Mar (i think) and try the Spa/yoga facilites at the resort next to Blue Surf, incredible.

Great place to stay, enjoy!

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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NYC
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2009

I just came back from a week at Blue Surf Sanctuary and am hard-pressed to think of a single bad thing to say about the place. It's located a one-minute walk from the most stunning beach, the rooms are beautiful, the staff takes great care of you (I loved waking up to a pot of fresh coffee a fruit every morning), and, most important, the people who run the hotel and give the surfing lessons are quite special.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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london
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2009

My husband and i booked ten days holiday at Blue Surf with our one-year-old son. We wanted a holiday of surfing and relaxing which we did not know would be possible with a baby. Blue Surf were absolutely brilliant at enabling us to have the most wonderful chilled out - and high action surf holiday - in gorgeous santa teresa.

Before we booked the aboslutely brilliant hotel manager Pia and owner Gloria, were utterly helpful on the phone, assuring us that no requests would be too hard. We asked for something to make the balcony safe for our son and if we could have surf lessons around his schedule rather than what is normally offered. We also asked for a baby car seat for our airport pick up and a baby sitter to come while we went surfing and for some evenings out. They sorted everything brilliantly, finding a loving and reliable baby sitter and even even flying in wire mesh from LA to properly secure our balcony! During the week Pia and her assistants Sophia and Tanya helped us with any arrangement we wanted to make (and change at the last minute), from massages to horseriding to booking restaurants in the evening.

The hotel is made up of four lovely bungalows overlooking a small pool and set in a lush garden with an open air kitchen for communal breakfasts which you can use to cook in the evening and just hang out. It made the place feel more personal than a hotel, and all the staff were so fab, and so welcoming to our son, we really felt like we lived there, rather than being faceless tourists. That said the atmosphere was a communal as you wanted it to be.

Every day we had surfing lessons with the surf school which is run from the hotel and our two instructors, Toro and Quique were unbelieveably dedicated, patient and helpful. There were times when one would be under water helping push me on to waves, or personally pulling my board through heavy white water with me clinging on. Despite being unconfident in the waves my surfing really improved with them as teachers and even in big, scary waves i managed to have fun.

Re the location we were a little in doubt at the beginning as to whether to stay at Blue Surf because it wasn't actually on the beach like many of the hotels. But in the end we considered this an advantage - it was actually quite nice to walk 100 yards back to a tranquil green garden which was more restful than the beach front properties. It also felt lot safer in that the hotel was enclosed and the grounds locked at night with a security guard so you didn't feel like anyone could just wonder in off the beach. this was particularly reassuring having a small child. Blue Surf is also at the quieter end of the beach - which is more chilled - although it does mean that to go out at night requires booking taxis or hiring a car, or a half hour schlep along the beach. We were so tired most nights we were happy to stay in and order pizza, cook, or eat early at the nearby local beach restaurant.

In summary, Santa Teresa is a gorgeous beach with lots of great places to stay, but being somewhere that was intimate and personal and run by such lovely people, meant a great holiday became absolutely wonderful.

  • Liked — lovely staff and location
  • Stayed January 2009
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2008

Truly a sanctuary! Blue Surf is an amazing place to stay. The bungalows are beautiful, clean and above all relaxing. I traveled there solo and I never felt more welcomed, taken care of and safe. Gloria, the owner and her amazing staff promote a welcoming and low key atmosphere while providing top notch accommodations. There is an open air kitchen for all to share and you become quick friends with everyone who is staying there. The beach is literally steps away and there is a pool if you feel like going for a dip! The surf school is great and Ben is an awesome instructor! I highly recommend this place and I will be going back very soon. I’ve stayed at many places in Costa Rica and this by far THE BEST and you can not beat the price.

Thank you Blue Surf for an experience of a lifetime! See you soon!

  • Liked — The atmosphere and my room.
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 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.
New Port Richey, fl
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2008

The property was phenomenal. It was always very well maintained by everyone. You did such a great job on every aspect from the decorating of the rooms to the wonderful hammock and swinging beds, that I believe we all sleep on at one time or another. I would definitely return, hopefully sooner than later.

I have to say that we all feel like something is missing since we returned from Santa Teresa. We have all spoke about moving there...but then we remember we already have one mortgage. : } Everyone that we met was so nice. It is really neat to hang out with all the same people at a different bar each night! D&N was great on reggae night!

Thank you for such a great place with such a wonderful atmosphere. I have found it very hard to describe to people the feeling of content that comes over you once you arrive. I would definitely recommend Blue Surf Sanctuary to anyone looking to travel to Costa Rica and embrace the surfer community.

  • Stayed May 2008, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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 Blue Surf Sanctuary

Address: Santa Teresa~ Mal Pais, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 31 B&Bs / Inns in Santa Teresa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Blue Surf Sanctuary is a small boutique hotel & upscale surf school located in magical Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, 100 yards from the sand!Gorgeous bungalows with daily housekeeping, A/C, pool and fully equipped kitchen. We pride ourselves on our stellar customer service, our use of organic soaps and consciousness about our beautiful oceanWe offer both accommodations only, surf packages or surf lessons to outside clients! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blue Surf Sanctuary Hotel Santa Teresa
Blue Surf Sanctuary Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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