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“Amazing place!”

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Casa Viva Beach Houses
Reviewed February 23, 2014

Our family spent a week at Casa Viva and a wonderful time. The handcrafted houses are placed strategically among beautiful gardens, which gives you a little privacy. Our house had a queen bed and two singles and was furthest from the beach, but we could still hear the waves and feel the lovely ocean breeze. The wrap-around porch with hammocks had a wonderful view of the beach and was a perfect place to stay cool. Our cabin had a nice, simple little kitchen with coffee maker and toaster. The water from the tap is drinkable but has a metallic taste so there is drinking water provided. The workers brought us fresh coconuts and fruit grown on the property the first few days we were there. I should mention that there was a little wildlife present around the house. We saw tucans and woodpeckers in the trees next to our porch. A few lizards scampered along the beams in the roof, but were mostly around at night and did not bother us at all. The local howler monkeys also provided wake up calls early in the morning. It was all part of the experience of being in this beautiful area!
The beach was a short walk through the property and was one of the loveliest beaches I have been on. The sand was beautiful and clean and bordered by trees so shade was always an option if you needed a break from the sun. The water was warm and the swimming was safe with no riptides. While we were there the waves were wonderful for body surfing.
Jeannie, the owner, lives on the property and was very friendly and helpful. She arranged the interbus transportation from our hotel in San Jose to Casa Viva. She also provided information about guides to help explore the Gandoca-Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge 7k beyond Punta Uva. A family up the road from Casa Viva rents bikes (Lucy's Tours) which make it easy to travel from Casa Viva to the little towns of Manzanillo or Puerto Viejo. There is also a wonderful little Caribbean restaurant (Selvins) less than 1k up the road.
I had read some reviews questioning the safety of this place and the friendliness of the owner. I can only say that we felt very safe and welcomed while we were here. The houses are able to be locked securely. Jeannie's friendly and helpful workers were around during the day and there was security near the beach in the evenings.
Overall, this was an amazing place to stay with a variety of things to do a short distance away.

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled with family
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3  Thank marieh907
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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15 - 21 of 65 reviews

Reviewed December 1, 2013

Spent two weeks at Cas Viva, Punta Uva, Costa Rica from November 1 through 15, 2013. A wonderful setting. The owner/operator, Jeanie, was a princess. Her helpers, Francisco and Marleni are warm and friendly. Francisco would bring us fresh fruit often. The beach is very close and gorgeous. Selvin's and El Refugio are two nearby restaurants that are absolutely fantastic.There's a convenience store a short walk away; during the day there's a German woman behind the counter named Saskia, who is absolutely fascinating and friendly. A trip to the beach at Manzanillo is also a must. While there plan lunch at "Cool & Calm." Chef Andy is a wonderful character and his guacamole and chips are out of this world. The Jaguar Centro de Rescate (Rescue Center) is also worthwhile. Olgita, the Casa Viva beach dog is a real treat for dog lovers. Treat her right and she'll hang out and also go to the beach with you.

Room Tip: House no. 2 is the best one there; isolated and very private.
  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank PuntaUvaPaul
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 23, 2013

Just returned from our first ever trip to Costa Rica, where I had debated where to stay on the Caribbean coast for a long time. In the end, I chose Casa Viva over other rental homes because I liked the location (good swimming beach - not too rough) and it was secluded but safer than a house all on its own since it is in a family of cabins with the owner on-site. We stayed in the house with one queen and two singles, and our third child slept on the daybed in the living room. We felt very safe and the house was beautiful with a wrap around porch and very useful kitchen.

Owner was very nice and low-key, and the groundskeeper (Domingo, I think) was as well. He came and found my kids and I one day when there was a sloth in the garden on the ground. We got to meet it face to face, such a special experience. The beach was beautiful and you pretty much have it all to yourself.

We did get a lot of mosquito bites, not sure there is any way to avoid that this time of year in Costa Rica (or any time). There were nets on the beds, it is just unavoidable as you are trying to get fresh air but keep the bugs out at the same time.

I can say that after looking into SO many places, beaches, etc, once I actually got to the area I was very happy with this choice. Appropriately priced for the amenities, etc. One bonus - we needed laundry done and they did it on site for a very reasonable price.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank Allison_Yr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2013

My husband Tom and I spent three weeks at Casa Viva. We stayed in the duplex which was perfect for us. The duplex was lovely and closest to the beach. We could hear the sounds of the waves day and night, a short stroll to the beach with warm/ calm water wonderful for swimming. It was fun getting up in the morning to watch monkeys playing in the trees right in front of your door. For breakfast we would have fruit, cereal, toast and coffee. The fridge and coffee maker that was provided was useful. Sometimes we would go to the main house and cook a meal, Raul was kind enough to let us cook a meal and we always made extra for him. Other times we would ride the bikes which they have on the property or we would catch the bus in front of Casa Viva and go to town or to Mazanilla Beach. The public bus transportation goes almost anywhere in Costa Rica, is safe and inexpensive . Not far away is the town of Puerto Viejo with lots of restaurants and shopping. We took Interbus from Punta Uva to La Fortuna, which is another way of getting around also safe and inexpensive. Casa Viva is the perfect home away from home, beautiful and affordable. We have stayed at many other places which don't compare to Casa Viva. We miss it so much and can't wait to go back, were hoping 2014. We highly recommend staying at Casa Viva. Thank you. Tom & Juliette
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Room Tip: The duplex closest to the beach but doesn't have a kitchen to cook meals. The one bedroom also v...
  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank tomandjuliette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2013

Jeannie owns and lovingly cares for a beautiful botanical property, part of a jungle area, which flows onto a fantastic beach. The cottages that she and her husband so meticulously built are a wonderful place to be. Her staff care about the guests. Nearby there are some very good places to eat and/or we prepared meals with the more than adequate kitchen. Jeannie supplied us with advice on being there and places to go. This place is a treasure, Thank you to Jeannie and her staff for making our introduction to Costa Rica so great.
John & Barb, Saskatchewan

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank learningfarmer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2013

During the last fifty years I have traveled in more than 100 countries and lived on five continents. When my wife and I happened onto Casa Viva three years ago we knew that we had found something special. We have come back every year since then. This winter for five weeks. As everyone agrees, the houses, the gardens and the beach are beautiful. The beach is the cleanest that I have seen anywhere and the lovely wooden houses are cleaned every weekday. Some of the kitchen equipment is elderly but quite adequate. The local restaurants are limited and we did our own cooking without any problem. Jeanie, the owner, was very helpful when we needed something. I do not understand the report about Jeanie's ill humor and argumentative behavior, except to note that all arguments require two participants. My wife and I have found Jeanie to be friendly, helpful and interesting.and think of her as a friend. The "vicious" rottweiler likes to have her stomach scratched. If the person from Vancouver who complained about "gecko poop" (about the size of two flyspecks) knew anything about the tropics she would have known that people want them in their houses to eat the mosquitos. Sealed, stale-smelling air conditioned hotel rooms do not have geckos.
The report of the robbery is unpleasant. There is crime in Costa Rica as there is everywhere. Something can happen anywhere, including at home.(In a lifetime of travel I have been robbed three times - once in Berlin and twice in Madrid.)

Casa Viva is a little piece of Paradise. We love it.

Room Tip: We prefer house number two or three
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank joseph d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2013

We stayed in this house for 10 days with our 3 kids. The gardens and wooden houses are (or used to be) beautiful. The beach is great. But .. The owner is just not fit to handle tourists. The house was dirty and poorly maintained (if at all). Non of the kitchen equipment was working, the beddings and towels dirty and old. Everything was covered in gecko poop.
What a shame, another owner and a little money could turn this place into a real gem.

Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
5  Thank HilaVancouver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Casa Viva Beach Houses

Address: Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Hotel Style:
Ranked #61 of 107 Specialty Lodging in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Number of rooms: 3
Also Known As:
Casa Viva Beach Houses Hotel Puerto Viejo
Casa Viva Beach Houses Costa Rica/Limon

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