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Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat
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Reviews (309)
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Reviewed July 1, 2012

We've been to several other places in Santa Teresa and across Costa Rica, but Pranamar ranks at the very top in terms of overall quality, enjoyment, and satisfaction. The rooms give you a truly comfortable setting with the right amount of solitude and privacy to make for a perfect romantic getaway. The location provides you easy access to the beach and nighttime views of the stars unlike anywhere we've ever been - the Milky Way was bright and seemed so close we could fetch a star from the sky! Unlike other places, Pranamar has all the amenities you'd want - a nice restaurant with first rate menu and cooks (awesome desserts especially the passion fruit key lime pie), a great pool to lounge in and even wifi should you feel the urge to check email. The staff was also very friendly and accommodating - particularly the owners who went above and beyond in making our trip great and sharing insight into Costa Rica. Finally, when you think it couldn't get better, the massage service (on the beachfront in a private hut) provided very skilled masseuses at a more than fair price. My wife and I kept thinking what wold make Pranamar better, and we couldn't come up with anything...it's already perfect. Book it if you can! Anna & Jeff from Wash DC.

Room Tip: Beachfront villa #1 or #2 is the best if you can get it
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Anna_Jeff_DC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 5, 2012

Dear Anna and Jeff,

Thanks so much for your kind words and great review. We are so glad that you both had a wonderful time on your vacation and we really enjoyed having you stay with us. We look forward to seeing you guys again. Let us know when you are arriving and we will have a fresh passion fruit-lime pie waiting for you!!
Be well,
Nancy Goodfellow and the Pranamar family

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Reviewed June 10, 2012

From the moment we checked in to the (sad) moment we departed, we were amazed by Pranamar. The staff were positive and welcoming- and they MEAN it. There are no forced smiles or fake "My Pleasure" s at Pranamar - everyone genuinely cares and wants to give you the best experience possible. Susan, Will, Monica, Alvaro, Melissa, and everyone else I'm forgetting totally took our stay from great to unforgettable. The property is beautiful- even more so than in the pictures. We stayed in bungalow 1 - they're all beautiful, so you really can't go wrong, but I loved that it was directly ON the beach, beautifully decorated, with an outdoor shower and a comfy hammock on the deck ( I slept outside on it every night!) . It gets better- let's talk about the FOOD. Delicious! SO yummy! We're Foodies who eat at the best restaurants, so trust me when I say that the chefs at Pranamar know what they're doing! The snapper with spicy green curry , brown rice and vegetables was my favorite- followed by the seared Ahi Tuna with noodles and other delicious things! Yum! The breakfast was insanely good- smoothies every day and the best breakfast I've EVER had- the typical meal of eggs, rice and beans, plantains, and cheese. It was AWESOME- please get this if you stay here! I had it every day! Pranamar is also great at recommending other restaurants in the area, along with things to do. They also arrange surfing lessons for you with a great instructor- we had Ki ke ( sorry if I misspelled that!) - he was patient and had us riding waves in no time. The town of Santa Teresa is warm and beautiful as it is - combine that with a stay at a magical place like Pranamar, and you'll never want to go home!

Room Tip: Bungalow one is awesome!
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank rachel88888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, co-owner/yoga director at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded June 11, 2012

Thanks so much!! We are so thrilled that you loved Pranamar and ate so well. It is true that are team loves what they do and is genuinely happy to help create the best vacation for our guests. We all consider ourselves very lucky and blessed to work in paradise and meet so many great people from around the world. We hope to see you again on your next visit to Costa Rica, and we'll be waiting with your favorite breakfast and smoothie! THanks again, Nancy

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Reviewed June 4, 2012

From the moment we stepped onto the property, the magical energy exuded and permeated my pores! The room was amazing....their attention to every detail didn't go unnoticed. The food, the smoothies, and the delicious drinks at Buddha Eyes (restaurant on property)...OMG! So many delicious flavors and a beautiful presentation to boot. Most important....The Pranamar Family was so kind and amazing! We felt like we were part of their family for the week. ♥ I had the best combination of recentering, connecting, fun, and adventure and will definitely be back! :-)
Even if you don't stay here....you must eat at Buddha Eyes while you are in Santa Teresa! I'm a foodie with a blog and all and dine at some pretty fantastic restaurants. Buddha Eyes is now at the top of that list!

WiFi in the lobby and restaurant was really fast! Just in case you can't completely disconnect! :)

Room Tip: We stayed in Villa 1 which is on the ocean and it was perfect!! There's even a hammock on the front deck that you could sleep in if you wanted, read a book, or just kick back and listen to the sound of the waves crashing, the birds chirping, or the monkeys! There aren't many rooms, so each one is special in it's own way. They all have A/C.
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank AudreyIsabella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 29, 2012

Having just returned from ten nights at Pranamar, my heart is aching as I think about the amazing experience I had in Costa Rica. I was not ready to leave. I was at Pranamar for a yoga and surfing retreat with Vajra Sol Yoga Adventures (search for Vajra Sol and look for a separate review) and spent an additional four nights at Pranamar after the retreat was over. This was not enough! If you can spend two weeks here, or longer, do it! You will ease into a life that is happy, warm, and full of amazing people, yoga, surfing, and food!

I spent six nights in Bungalow 2 and four nights in Villa 2. The bungalows are simple, but elegant. Bungalow 2 has a partial ocean view, a huge deck for lounging, a kitchenette, a separate sleeping and living space, and a fun outdoor shower area, just off the bathroom. The outdoor shower area is private and decorated with plants, rocks, and a statue of Ganesh. There's also an occasional crab in the shower area! Don't let this scare you, though. They are very shy and quick to get out of your way. I loved the peacefulness of this bungalow. It was also very private, away from the pool and main walking areas. I slept with the air conditioning on because I would close the windows at night to avoid the bugs (which there are not many) and to sleep in a little later. By later, I mean 6:00 am, after the sun has risen and the howler monkeys have stopped howling. After six nights in my sweet bungalow, I had the opportunity to move into Villa 2. It's very close to the water and has an unobstructed view (aside from palm trees) of the ocean and beach. The Villas are magnificent! They have two bedrooms and two bathrooms, a living room, and a full kitchen. However, their best feature is the upstairs outdoor balcony, complete with hammock, sitting area, sofa, and fans. It's really a dreamy place to relax during the hot afternoons or after dinner, under the stars. I could see the ocean from my bed in the morning. Does it get any better than that? And the nature shower in Villa 2 is divine. It's enclosed, but outdoors, filled with plants, statues, a bench, and a rain shower. Ah... By the way, the bungalows and villas are well stocked with bath towels, beach towels, biodegradable and natural shampoo, conditioner, and soaps. Villas 1 & 2 and Bungalow 1 are beachfront.

During the retreat, I surfed for the first time in my life. I was hooked immediately! After my four lessons during the retreat, I took two more private surf lessons (booked by the front desk staff) with the amazing Ismael from Del Mar Surf Camp, which operates out of Pranamar. I also worked with Ismael during the retreat. I could write an entire review about my surfing guru, Ismael, a truly gifted teacher that reads his students perfectly. He knew just when to push me and when to take things back a notch. I can still hear him calmly telling me, “Eyes forward. Relax.” You are a lucky person to spend time in the water with this man. You will have Ismael’s undivided attention for two hours, and he will teach you about life and the waves and you will walk away from every lesson feeling like you’ve just been given an amazing gift.

A review of Pranamar would not be complete without mentioning the staff. It is the staff that makes Pranamar exceptional. They have all the attentiveness of the staff you might find at a Four Seasons, but they are much warmer, sweeter, and truly invested in your happiness while you are at Pranamar. I looked forward to saying hello to the front desk staff (Dago, Dio, Andres) every day. They were quick to help you with your plans. However, they always went a step further, like reconfirming my shuttle ride back to the ferry. The restaurant staff is equally amazing. They will learn your name and your preferences quickly. Johan, Will, and Steban, behind the bar, always greet you with a smile. Servers Monica, Ana, Michelle, and Alvaro, are patient and kind. One evening, I wasn’t feeling well, and they made me a special ginger tea. By the time I left Pranamar, I considered many of the staff members my friends and the sent me off with a hug and a kiss on the cheek.

I took yoga classes with Sandra (of Vajra Sol Yoga Adventures), Nancy, and Andy. All classes were exceptional and the yoga shala is spectacular. Taking classes in the shala is a spiritual experience (as is surfing on Playa Hermosa) and my one regret is that I was not able to take more yoga classes while I was there. I went to Pranamar to deepen my yoga practice, and one can surely do that there, it just didn’t work out for me this time because I was captivated by surfing.

I am a vegetarian and I was completely satisfied with every meal I had at Pranamar’s restaurant. Everything is so fresh and prepared with care. The presentation is always beautiful. I am normally a healthy eater, but every meal at Pranamar was clean and healthy – even the divine lentil burger with fries! Breakfast, which is included with your stay, always comes with a fresh smoothie. I loved this unique touch. Every smoothie was different and delicious. The restaurant has a water dispenser on the bar that includes cold water with lemon and lime or mint. I often stopped by the restaurant to grab a cold drink. Little touches like this make Pranamar special. They have really thought about the little things that make guests comfortable.

I could write a few more paragraphs about Pranamar (it’s THAT amazing), but this review is getting long. Here’s a few other things that made my Pranamar visit great: a terrific massage from Delores, laundry service (much needed after about 6 days), friendly cleaning and grounds staff, impeccable landscaping, security (you will feel so safe at Pranamar),a warm and relaxing pool (loved evening dips, just before dinner), and an overall sense of tranquility. Pranamar is located past Santa Teresa on the Nicoya Peninsula. It is remote and in general, this is an isolated area. There are very few paved roads on the Peninsula. Getting there is an adventure, but this is part of the experience. I cannot wait until my return visit Pranamar, which I hope is sooner rather than later.

Room Tip: If you want an ocean view, book Villa 1 or 2 or Bungalow 1. If you're on a budget, book Garden Bungalow 2, which has a partial ocean view and lots of privacy.
  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Jen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, co-owner/yoga teacher at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded May 4, 2012

Namaste Jen,
My first word is "wow"...your review is so full of enthusiasm and joy and praise. We really want to thank you for taking the time to express yourself and tell everyone about the amazing week you had with us at Pranamar. We really appreciate the time you spent and the effort you made with this great letter of recommendations and positivity. We are so honored to have been chosen by Vajra Sol Yoga Adventures for their yoga/surf retreats and we love meeting so many adventurous, fun-loving people like yourself! We hope you will come back to our little piece of paradise on the beach and join us for more Yoga, surfing and good eating. THank you once again for your kind words and thoughtful review. Be well and stay positive. Pura Vida!

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Reviewed April 20, 2012

I stayed at Pranamar for a week in April - the property has a lovely pool that winds through the villas. It was a great place to relax with friends after surfing. It can be a little noisy for the villas on the pool (villas 4 and 6) during the day, but not at all a problem at night. The food was excellent and varied throughout our stay; I especially loved all the different smoothies! The resort is located easy walking distance from Playa Hermosa, which, during the week we were there, had gentle reliable waves. It was a great place to learn to surf. The resort partners with Del Mar Surf for lessons and board rentals, and they were really really great teachers and inspiring surfers. They each had great stories about learning to surf and their best and worst experiences on the water; don't miss the chance to get to know them better. I also enjoyed the yoga classes at the yoga shala. They were challenging and playful and I really had a great time practicing with Nancy. I am, of course, planning my return with family in tow!

Room Tip: Rooms on the garden/ocean are quieter than those on the pool
  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank SachaMalin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pranamar, co-owner/yoga teacher at Pranamar Villas and Yoga Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded May 4, 2012

Dear Sacha,
Thanks so much for posting a review for us at Pranamar. We love our work and we do our best to make everyone feel at home and have a wonderful experience. We are so glad you enjoyed your time with us and it would be so great to have you return with your family as well! If there is anything we can do to make your next stay with us even better, just ask. Maybe a yoga class for the whole family?Or a family surf lesson! Hope to see you back soon. Pura Vida!

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