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Reviewed 11 January 2014

My family (two college age kids, two parents) just returned from Costa Rica and Cristal Azul was the highlight of our trip. We found it difficult to tear ourselves away and wish that we had booked a larger portion of our trip here. The owners, Zene and Henner, are very attentive and responded to all our needs. The food is delicious and very fresh, we had octopus, shrimp, tilapia, and whole red snapper, accompanied by wonderful side dishes and flambé-d tropical fruits for desert. The place is perfect for a relaxing couple of days at the end of an active, adventurous trip through Costa Rica, and offers many beaches in the area with almost no people around. Make sure you have 4WD on your rental car and an experienced driver, as the drive to the hotel is a little difficult, but very much worth it.

Room Tip: There are four cabins, three have a queen bed, and one has a queen bed and a bunk bed.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
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Thank Artemis G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 January 2014

We just returned from Cristal Azul with our two college-aged children and hope to return. The views were amazing, the food was delicious, and the hosts were helpful and attentive. It is not the easiest place to get to, but when you arrive it is so worth it!

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Educat0r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 December 2013

We just returned from a few weeks in Costa Rica, and our stay at Cristal Azul was the highlight of our trip. We had only booked two days at CA with plans to spend a few days with friends in Playa Junquillal on our way to the airport. We came within inches of cancelling our visit with friends to spend another couple days in Playa San Miguel because we hated to tear ourselves away.

Zene and Henner are the ultimate hosts. The B&B is an extremely plush oasis in a nicely remote and extremely beautiful part of Costa Rica. From our arrival to departure the service and attention to detail were exceptional. Thanks to both (and the kitchen staff) for such a great stay.

The property is beautiful, the views are breathtaking. The infinity pool sitting high over the Pacific is a spectacular place to watch a sunset after a day on the beach. Although not directly on the beach the walk down the mountain to the beach is great, and the beach itself is stunning. There's a great beach bar that serves up a really good ceviche and the beer is cold.

Oh yes, the food! The only complaint I have is that I think I put 5 pounds on while there for 2 days. When presented with the menu options in the morning for dinner that night we would just tell them to make one of each of the appetizers and entrees since we couldn't chose. Jamie and I would then proceed to eat our way through the night while talking with Henner who is a very engaging and entertaining host. The kitchen staff is incredible and we are going to return if for no other reason than to try the sushi.

Thanks again Zene and Henner for a wonderful experience. Thanks also for the Butterfly Farm recommendation, it was a really great way to spend the morning. Mike is an extremely knowledgeable and engaging entomologist and his farm is incredibly fascinating. We loaded up our luggage with honey.

See you next year.

Room Tip: Can't go wrong with any one of the cabinas although the one on the far end (not sure of the number) might have more privacy in the morning.
  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank rsoucy20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 November 2013

Our honeymoon at Cristal Azul was absolute perfection. My husband had wanted a big resort, but I wanted more adventure without the hovering staff and endless other guests of a resort. The more research I did on Cristal Azul, the more ideal it sounded. We weren’t disappointed. It was just right—a mix of luxury, breathtaking views, delicious food, attentive personal service and adventure. It was easily the best vacation I’ve ever been on. The hotel is small (I believe it sleeps ten?) and we were lucky enough to be the only guests that week. It would be the perfect venue for a vacation with a group of friends or family. Getting there is a trek, but it was worth it. Playa San Miguel isn’t touristy at all, and it’s also not too remote—civilization is available, but you can avoid it if you want to. We were near so much we wanted to do—Mike’s Butterfly Jungle, the ARA Project (Scarlet Macaw sanctuary) at Hotel Punta Islita, the PRETOMA sea turtle conservation project (we released baby turtles!!), and a totally beautiful, basically empty beach. And of course, we did zip lining and checked out some local towns, but our little B&B on the hill of Playa San Miguel was our favorite spot. Zene and Henner are great; it was like staying with friends who want nothing more than for you to have a good time. We miss them! They helped us figure out our plans and set up our little trips; we felt so taken care of. The food by Marco and Chrisly was amazing and probably the best we ate during our trip. We rented a car, which I definitely recommend, it’s part of the fun to drive around on the unpaved roads (which weren’t in the best shape since rainy season was only just ending). There were some great restaurants nearby; we especially liked the Costa Rican owned/operated places. We didn’t get to eat at the highly recommended Tanga’s—one more reason we have to go back. Our cabina was lovely and very private, we enjoyed the huge windows overlooking the Pacific. Cristal Azul’s location on the hill is amazing. We woke up early most mornings so we could enjoy the bird calls and look for the monkeys hanging out in the trees. AC was available but we didn’t use it, the ceiling fan was enough. The rooms were cleaned daily. I should mention, people afraid of animals and bugs (geckos and frogs for example) might get freaked out (it’s kind of a jungle after all), but we expected much worse as far as bugs—they weren’t a problem at all. We were there the second week of November, and the weather was perfect: not overwhelmingly hot or sunny, not too rainy, and everything was lush. We asked Zene to let the dogs hang out with us, which was a treat—we love dogs but don’t have one. We wish we could spend every morning sitting by the infinity pool with a book and that incredible view, sipping one of Chrisly’s delicious smoothies, and not having a care in the world. We didn’t want our honeymoon to end and we definitely plan on coming back. Other reviews have called Cristal Azul “heaven” and I totally agree.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank JulieMlastname
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 November 2013

My wife and I stayed at Cristal Azul for the second time in june of 2013. If you read my review of our December, 2012, visit you can understand why. We have spent a great deal of vacaton time in this wonderfully rural area of Costa Rican seaside. Therefore, we spent an additional few days at Cristal Azul, with Henner and Zene.
This will be my last review of Cristal Azul, because we have purchased property very close by, and Henner and Zene, are now our neighbors and friends forever. So, it would not be fair to post reviews with such predudice and bias in the future.
Our experience at Cristal Azul has been like returning to heaven one more time, and it always will be. Looking at the pictures tells only part of story. The atmosphere and the views, along with the accomodations and service at Cristal azul cannot be captured in pictures, you may not even believe it when you see and experience it with your own eyes.
Oh, yeah, all the othe wonderful reviews about staying at Cristal Azul are filled with truths.
Charlie

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank charles h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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