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“Paradise Found!”
Review of LagunaVista Villas

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LagunaVista Villas
Certificate of Excellence
Coffs Harbour
Level 4 Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Paradise Found!”
Reviewed May 9, 2014

We stayed here for seven days in April. We were in Villa 8 which had a fantastic view to the lagoon and coast, was very private, and had its own plunge pool.

This place is amazing, with wildlife at every turn. I hardly had time to read as I always had my camera at hand to photograph the wildlife. I became obsessed with taking pictures of the macaws - and got some great shots of the monkeys also.

Macho was a great host - there to cater for our every need - and also Freddy - and the food!!! The meals were 5 star - the chef was brilliant!

Things to be aware of - it is very hot! In fact the staff were complaining of the heat! There is really no internet or mobile phone access. It is in fact a wonderful feeling having no contact with the outside world! The resort is run on solar power - so do not expect air conditioning. The fan was adequate.

You can do as much or as little as you like. We did the boat trip on the lagoon - and also the kayaking. My husband did the day trip to the National Park - I opted out of that as I knew it would be way too hot for me.

I settled into a bit of a routine. An early walk to photograph the birds, then breakfast, followed by a swim in the pool..... oh the pool..... I had it all to myself and it has to be the best pool ever! I then read my book- and took photos - and just observed - I watched the birds of prey, the monkeys,the butterflies etc. I would then wander back to our villa for some more reading, photography and a dip in the plunge pool - followed by a gourmet lunch - and then more of the same!

It truly is a little piece of paradise - highly recommended!

Room Tip: Choose a unit with a plunge pool - Villa 8 was great!
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
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1 Thank Heather B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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93 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
Date | Rating
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English first
Hemel Hempstead, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 8, 2014

Although I don't normally write reviews I felt I needed to in the case of Laguna Vista.

I won't add to much as everything I intended to say has been said by previous clients, so I will just agree with a big +.

It takes your breath away as soon as you drive up the fern covered drive to reception , then walk past the infiniti pool looking out onto the Pacific, but the best is to come when you walk into your room, we were room 8 as previous clients were. Just going into the room and taking in the remarkable view makes you wonder where are you as it is incredible.

The help from the owner Greg before travelling and all the staff while we were there was brilliant and cannot be faulted.

I won't add anymore as it has all been said below and I totally agree and more.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Michael S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charleston, SC
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed December 22, 2013

The view here is spectacular. We rented a villa with a plunge pool and while I thought I wouldn't get in it, I did, many times. The lagoon, beach, and ocean are very picturesque. Wild life viewing is superb and location to park is great. Our bilingual guide into the park, Eric, was great. The staff was fantastic. The owner was not on site thus there were some communication efforts with staff for our Spanish is rudimentary but all always got worked out. Macho was a phenomenal chef and took such great pride in everything he made us. You will not go hungry here! As others have said, there's a lot of creepy crawlers but it's manageable. You will forget about any spider when you watch the scarlet macaws flying past you at eye level! The road to get there was fun and the river crossings were no big deal with a 4x4. It's slow going out to Carate but so worth the trip!

Room Tip: The villas with plunge pools are on west side thus seem to have better sunset views. They are compl...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank DJTA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Greg R, Owner at LagunaVista Villas, responded to this review, January 17, 2014
Thank you very much for your generous comments about our lodge. We have taken your suggestions to heart and, since your stay with us, have made improvements based on your comments and those of other guests. All our room fans were recently replaced with more energy efficient models which also provide much better air flow and cooling effects. You'll be happy to know there is no more need for that cool shower before bed! All our units are now fully AC power equipped and come complete with sofas, coffee tables and cushioned seats as well. No more sparseness to be seen. We are continuing to make improvements on our labor of love, a work in progress that may never end but keeps us happily employed in a beautiful location: LagunaVista Villas, Costa Rica. Thanks again, and we hope you will return to see the changes you helped initiate. All the best.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Petersburg, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
43 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed July 28, 2013

Stayed here at the end of June, after a couple attempts in previous years to stay here. Never worked out for one reason or another but I am so glad it finally did this trip because it was such a great part of my recent trip. Drove myself from Dominical (3 hours to Puerto Jimenez) and then another 90 minutes to Carate, on the much improved road. We had the lightening storm of a lifetime the afternoon I arrived and, once it had passed, was very lucky to experience.

The villas are all similar, with different views. My villas, #8, had a refreshing plunge pool and a view of a tree that the macaws were in constantly, in great numbers. All the villas look out over the lagoon (fun to spot the crocs!) and the ocean beyond. The bathrooms are open air, most with 2 options for a shower. Furnished simply, with a ceiling fan and mosquito netting, there were really all you needed and kept very clean by housecleaning.

I was lucky enough to be at LVV the same time as the owners, after communicating with them for a long time. Friendly, warm people. Always prompt and helpful answers to any questions I had in my correspondence with them. Food was incredible, always fresh and delicious.

I didn't do a lot of activities during my 3 night stay there, just relaxed and enjoyed the huge, wonderful infinity pool. Plenty of wildlife right by the dining area though, such as capuchins, a snake, a spectacled owl, Jesus Christ lizards, etc. I also took a hike around the property with Freddie, who works on site, there is a nice set of trails below the villas leading to the lagoon and back to the main road.

I've stayed in a few of the other lodging in the Carate area and so far this has been my favorite, one that I definitely would recommend and return to.

Room Tip: Villa #8 has a nice plunge pool and a nice view of the tree that the macaws frequent.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank midori
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level 4 Contributor
15 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed July 25, 2013

Have recently returned to the UK with my partner and 23 year old daughter from an amazing 12 day visit to Costa Rica, half of which was spent at Lagunavista Villas near Carate on the Osa Peninsula. Being a nature lover and keen to escape the crowds I had chosen my ultimate Costa Rica destination carefully – and I wasn’t disappointed. Lagunavista Villas is perched on the steep hillside above a beautiful fresh water lagoon just beyond which the Pacific Ocean crashes onto the beach. The view from our villa (and our bed) was unbelievably spectacular and we spent much time just sitting watching the scarlet macaws (and there were many), the pelicans riding the waves, the soaring vultures, innumerable other types of birds, the crocs cruising on the lagoon in the distance, the monkeys, iguanas, jesus-christ lizards, toads, the comical leaf-cutter ants … the list goes on.

We had chosen to drive there from San Jose with a couple of stops along the way to get a feel for Costa Rica. We are pleased that we did that rather than fly in to the tiny strip at Carate. The drive is interesting! (Would highly recommend Ezfind Costa Rica Navsat – it took us straight to most places and was wonderful for finding your way into and out of San Jose - the signposting is somewhat lacking).

The area around Lagunavista has a Disneyesque feel – huge blue butterflies fluttering by, Scarlet Macaws in numbers I would never have believed, wonderful jungle sounds – it was as if someone was releasing these creatures and noises by remote control!

We kayaked, fished, went horse-back riding (how amazing to canter along the wild pacific beach), did a day trip to Corcovado where we saw families of Coaties, Spider Monkeys, Howler Monkeys, White Faced Cappuchins, an Ant Eater, the tail-end of of a Tayra (a huge otter-type creature), an amazing green snake, loads of different birds including a wonderfully characterful Tropical Screech Owl who just looked at us for the 10 minutes we looked at him – and we were only a few feet away! Thrilled to see a Sloth too another day.

We also spent a lot of our time at the absolutely wonderful, wonderful Lagunavista infinity pool. The website photo does not do it justice! It was SO warm and with more views to die for. We were very lucky with the weather too knowing that we were there in what can be rather a wet time of year.

With outdoor bathrooms that open onto the deck (took a bit of getting used to) and the compromises that have to be made with regards to use of electricity Lagunavista Villas may not suit everyone. It is not 5* luxury, but nevertheless, very comfortable and it depends on what you’re looking for. Our rooms were spacious and simply furnished. Could have done with a little more storage for our 6 night stay! The compromises however were not a problem to us (we had our torches), and we feel very privileged to have been somewhere so special, in comfort yet so close to nature.

Room Tip: We had rooms 7 and 8 - would thoroughly recommend - amazing views and plunge pools on decks.
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Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Sallyh164
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, CA
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 10, 2013

I have now visited Laguna Vista Villas 3 times and find myself wanting to return every chance I can. The hotel is located off the beaten path, yet once you get to the hotel you'll be very happy you made the trac.
The Staff is very friendly and provides excellent service as well as cooking meals, all the meals prepared were great; the fresh seafood caught that day was prepared for my daughter and I was delicious.
The rooms have the most incredible views to the Pacific Ocean and the lagoon. Normally there is a light breeze that blows up the hill side and provides comfortable ventilation in the rooms as well as the rooms having ceiling fans. .
The Villas have incredible open air bathrooms and showers.
The Pool is beautiful and also has incredible views of the Pacific Ocean.
The lagoon provides a great place to Paddle boat, fish, or watch all types of wildlife, we paddle boated the lagoon and than visited a the beach which we had all to ourselves.
So if you have a few days and enjoy a road-trip off the beaten path, than this is your place.
BTW, I have flown into the hotel, and drove to hotel, both are nice, yet I enjoy the drive so I can enjoy the tropical sights along the way.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank PuraVidaTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed April 30, 2013

This part of Costa Rica is hard to get to, but it makes it all the more special. One of a handful of lodges in Playa Carate, which is literally at the end of the road and close to the SE entrance to Corcovado National Park.

LagunaVista sits atop a bluff above a large lagoon with a postcard-perfect barrier beach on the other side. The villas are simple but nice, each with a deck with a multi-million dollar view. The crew that manages the place (owner lives in Italy), while not the most professional looking, is very accomodating, sincere, and does its job very well.

Dinner is served family style in a covered open-air dining area, and was filling. Note that you're 1.5 hours away from the nearest store, so there aren't many other options for meals. There are kayaks to rent to ply the lagoon and visit the beach (you can also walk to the beach in 20-30 minutes), and they have a electrical motor boat for tours of the lagoon. (Gabriel and Freddy took us on a night tour to see crocodiles in the lagoon - we're amazed Freddy still has all 10 fingers).

Wildlife: Plenty of macaws, vultures, lizards, bullfrogs and insects; howler monkeys can be heard; coatis roam the pool area at dusk; a spider monkey or two are in the trees down by the lagoon; crocodiles and caimans in the lagoon, along with flying fish and plenty of wading birds.

Room Tip: Villa #8 has an optimal view, a plunge pool on the deck
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank peppelarson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about LagunaVista Villas

Property: LagunaVista Villas
Address: | Playa Carate, Carate, Corcovado National Park 60702, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Osa Peninsula > Corcovado National Park > Carate
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 6 Specialty Lodging in Carate
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — LagunaVista Villas 3*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our lodge comprises 8 Mediterranean style villas, a large swimming pool and restaurant. It sits on a small peninsula inside a fresh water lagoon bordering it on three sides and a Pacific Ocean beach 200m across the lagoon, accessible by our boats and kayaks. We run on solar power, our water is from a fresh mountain spring and we produce fresh food daily from our biological garden. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
LagunaVista Villas Costa Rica/Carate

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