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Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

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Playa Guiones...
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Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

My husband and I will be making a trip to these areas to explore the surffing and possible real estate. We are on a tight budget of no more than $75 per night, including taxes. I have seen mention of Bay View Resort, Palmer Surf Camp, Costazul Beach Hostle and a couple others but can't find web sites that show rates. I'm not ready to contact them yet, just want to know what's there and what the rates are.

Can anyone help with lodging in this general area? It does not have to be ON the beach, but close, and a small pool for me (I don't surf!) would be an extra plus.

Thanks!

LN
Panama City, Panama
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1. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

When are you coming? The ones I am thinking of in off season would be within your budget; AND are either on the beach or walkable distance, but no pools. Now high season , when it starts to get cold in North America, Europe, November-ish through about April, prices are much higher. Let me know your dates. thanks.

Playa Guiones...
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2. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

The dates would be sometime early to mid Jan., but a pool is no longer necessary. My husband will be going with another surfer friend (so I can stay here in Costa Rica with our dog) so accommodations can be fairly basic....at least a pool will no longer be a plus. Let me know it this will help finding a place so he and a friend can explore the area. Thanks again!

Playa Guiones...
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3. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

Well, now that my husband is traveling with a friend, he can split the cost with him, so budget can be a little more. Ideas!

LN
Panama City, Panama
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4. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

There are beautiful cabanas at Las Sirenas with the beautiful beach at your door. However, I find it a little pricey comparatively with other places, and know that gringos pay more for their stay than Panamanians. It is super clean and right on the beach, with full kitchens, etc., hammocks hanging to relax in. Virtually need a taxi to go anywhere, even restaurants, so a little isolated on Santa Clara Beach. I have stayed there several times when family visited. BUT virtually NO English is spoken by caretaker, staff, so if you can't speak Spanish and need anything, it will be practically impossible to obtain. If you click on my profile name, you can read our review on Las Sirenas.

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g780122-d605104…

Great clean basic little place to stay with a choice of single rooms, 1 studio suite, and 1 separate cabin. Cheap.

Great swimming pool and bohio that are perfect for relaxation and they are only a 3 - 4 minute walk to the beach across the Pan-American Highway.

There is also a bar and restaurant on the property - American couple have owned and operated this property for years and years, Sheila and Dennis.

They can help you with all you need to find in the area, including real estate people if you are interested.. The restaurant has excellent food--they say the hamburgers are great there (I don't eat meat, so don't know) but love the hand cut french fries. They have a full menu, so you could basically have all your meals where you are staying. It is quiet, and mesmerizing as the outside restaurant is surrounded with exotic birds, talking parrots. Sheila and Dennishave rescued many of these birds from people (mainly expats) who thought a bird would be sooo fun to own......and then no longer wanted to care for it. There are many many birds on the property. I love the setting.

They have been written up in Frommers, Fodors, etc. for at least 10 years. For these two guys, this is the place I would most recommend in this situation.

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g780122-d121…

If you like a B& B, I would recommend Villa Botero - right across the street from the beach at Santa Clara - wonderful little place.

You would however, have to drive to nearby restaurants:

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g780122-d122519…

)If you plan on visiting El Valle (sleepy little mountain town-worth the trip) on the way up, exactly 3km up the road to El Valle, on the left is a cantina named Paraiso owned by a Canadian woman, Rose, and serves great cheap food and inexpensive cocktails.

She has put alot of money and time into this new little place - enjoy ! And she is very helpful and knowledgeable about the area also.

She has little cottages to rent super cheap on the hillside, but would have to take transportation (buses) to the beach from there. Again,

if you click on my profile name, I haved written a review for here.

tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g294480-d1…

For San Carlos / El Palmar way area there is the Bay View Motel (called "resort", but NOT). I have seen the rooms and for two guys would be

perfect (I am fussy, so wouldn't want to stay there). Wonderful as you are right on the beach. Restaurant there also on beach.

I haven't eaten there in years, but food was basic. Bar there also.

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g1118358-d62…

Also friends who surf over this way (NOT all surfing is in Bocas contrary to what many like to say on here) recommend this very basic

place on the beach: Review is in German, but google can translate. It i s far from all else, so would be difficult to get out and look for

real estate from here.

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g677776-d196…

Also for San Carlos, and this is new right in the little village of San Carlos and fabulous place (pretty cheap too). Short walk to beach.

Restaurants (cheap) ones nearby.

It is a new building on the square and the apartment is upstairs. If you decide to stay there, I have nearby surfer friends who

could help you out with surfing info.

http://www.vrbo.com/327014

Coronado Area: My favorite place to stay here would be:(actually I have 2), but one will be too pricey when you are coming in January I think

.

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g1022784-d15543…

Rene and Anne-Marie are wonderful people - very knowledgeable about the area and helpful to the "nth" degree. She speaks

French, English and Spanish fluently. They also have a pool

and walkable to the beach in Coronado. Coronado has malls, and 24 hour large supermarket chains, great restaurants.

The other favorite is:

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g1022784-d19063…

New hotel, RIGHT on the beach, walkable to nearby restaurants as they don't have a full restaurant staff yet. Beautiful new hotel, condo

building. Right now in off season rates are $89. a nite, but not sure how much they go up for prime season (January when you are coming)

While looking for the Solarium's link I saw this listed also:

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g1022784-d22418…

I am not familiar with the place or the owners, but the ratings on here are good. Must be a pretty new place.

Let me know if you need more info. Hope this helps.

Edited: 31 October 2011, 15:44
Playa Guiones...
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5. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

Wow! Such a long, detailed report, you have no idea how helpful this is and sincerely appreciated! You're the best!

The men will have a car and both speak Spanish, so they have excellent choices now, thanks again!

LN
Panama City, Panama
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6. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

There you go, then Allylam! It is all about helping others, isn't it? Testimony to your many helpful posts as a DE for Nosara !! Thank you !

If they need any more info, just post again !

LN
Panama City, Panama
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5,784 posts
76 reviews
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7. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

P.S. Rose's restaurant is actually 1.5 miles up the hill, not three, sorry.

Playa Guiones...
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8. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

Thanks again LN, and I do have another question! Besides looking for surf/relocation for a second home, another reason for the trip is for our truck! We need new tires, shocks and brakes and it's real expensive here. I have heard from friends here that it's cheaper in Panama, even cheaper than San Jose. Should my husband and his friend try to buy the tires near David...or in Coranado...what about shocks and brake work? Perhaps this calls for a PM...I will wait a day or two then try to contact you...thanks so much!

LN
Panama City, Panama
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9. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

Will have to check this out. We have a newer vehicle which hasn't needed any of those things and my husband does the major stuff on our vehicle most of the time.

my husband said a new tire store (Bridgestone) is opening up in Coronado.

Since we have a couple of months, I will put some inquiries out there for you in local spots and post or PM when I know.

Have NO idea if David would be cheaper.....best go back to your sources that said Panama was cheaper and ask them where in Panama?

Playa Guiones...
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10. Re: Santa Clara/San Carlos area hotels?

My friends live in Dominical and went somewhere in David (I think?) for tires, so I can check with them, but the Bridgestone in Coranado might work too! Thanks again...we'll be in touch!