Potrero is a tiny town that's not touristy at all, which we loved. Stef Surf condos are less than 5 minute short walk to the beach down a few dirt roads, lush with colorful flowering plants. Beach is beautiful, sand light gray, and the busiest time seems to be around sunset, but even then, it's pretty deserted and quiet, which was fine with us! Stef Surf condo was great. Spacious, clean, beautiful, with multiple decks and outside seating areas, and lots of privacy. Pool very nice. Briefly met other guests (I think they have 4 condos in the complex) but most of the time it felt like we were the only ones there. Francisco the manager welcomes you upon arrival and is available 24/7 - very helpful and gracious. Didn't meet his wife in person but she set up a queen-sized air bed for one of my kids right away (and there was plenty of space for it in the living room). There are several restaurants within walking distance, including two that you can reach by a ten minute stroll down the beach. There's a convenience store, Super Wendy, that's about a 7 minute walk. Really loved the feeling of not being in a tourist hotspot. The owners also arrange for each guest to meet Lis, who stops by to talk about the various day activities and restaurants that one can choose to do. The owners also send a welcome packet chock full of info about what's around, which was really helpful. We stayed 4 nights which seemed just right.
You think that all those 5-stars comments and reviews are a bit exagerate.
Not at all. It's well deserve. Francisco and Marling were so friendly. La Gaviota
is as welcomming as on the pictures. Nice kitchen and dining room, wonderful master bedroom with private washroom and balcony that make you feel living in the jungle, with all those trees and flowers around. And the pool longer than we would expect.
There's enough space for a family of 5 with 3 teens. They just added an air bed
in the living room. Anyway, we we're almost always outside, enjoying all the great beaches around. Our favorite: the closest one, Potrero and his amazing sunset; and for the kids, Tamarindo and his big waves. Don't miss Playa Conchal and the snorkeling at the very far right of the beach.
Lis booked us a snorkelling trip for the family with Emilio. Very great activity. He brings us on boat to 2 different spots and come in the water to show us things that we could'nt see by ourselves because: well hiden at the bottom of the sea and too deep for our small breath ! This man has 4 lungs ! So amazing to see him dive so slowly to show us sea treasure.
We've tried some restaurants following Greg advices: they we're all great.
Before arriving in Portrero, we went to Arenal ( impressive, but still very touristic )
and Rincon de la Vieja ( so nice waterfalls and thermal spring at Hacienda Guachipelin ).
So it's hard to go back to daily routine after tasting "la Pura vida!"
Merci les Ticos et les Ticas !
The condo, the gardens, and the pool are immaculate. We loved waking up to the sounds of the birds in the morning and bird watching from the balcony off the master bedroom. The condo is a 1-2 minute walk to the beach (Playa Potrero), which was incredibly clean and nearly deserted! During the day there were never more than 10 people on the entire beach when we were there! We tried several local restaurants (The Shack, Perla's, and Las Brisas) and bought lots of fruit at the fruit stand just outside of town. Our kids loved Perla's because they have a huge projection tv, two dart boards, and several games to play while you wait for your food.
We also visited Playa Penca, which was also beautiful. The waves were a bit bigger and more powerful here than at Playa Potrero. We tried snorkeling here, but didn't see much of anything, which was disappointing, but again we had the entire beach basically to ourselves! A bigger disappointment was that someone stole our cooler and our emergency kit from our car while we were at Playa Penca the beach. My husband thought he locked the car, but he must not have because there were no signs of forced entry into the vehicle. It was a bummer, but it certainly didn't ruin our vacation or change our opinion of this condo and this area. We never felt unsafe while we were here, even walking to and from restaurants, everyone was very friendly and helpful, just don't forget to lock your car and don't leave any valuables unattended!
Greg, the owner, was very responsive when I emailed with questions or concerns. We really hope to go back sometime!
The sun sets early in Costa Rica, so even though we arrived at Stef Surf somewhere close to 6:30, it was dark. As we pulled up, it was obvious that Francisco, (the face of Stef Surf) had been waiting patiently for us.
With a happy hello in both English and Spanish, he welcomed us to Costa Rica and helped us to our home away from home for the next 10 days.
He gave us a tour of the spacious and beautiful, two story condo as well as the property. We were the only visitors that week so the place and all it has to offer was ours alone.
With a fully stocked kitchen (utensils and cooking paraphernalia...the food is up to you), you are well prepared to make the daily decision...to cook or not to cook?
We made good use of the kitchen for breakfast but out for any other meal. We were on vacation, after all.
The grounds of the property are lush and green. As a tall family, we usually felt compelled to duck below the leaves and branches of the plentiful trees and greenery. We often saw local contractors armed with machetes. I laughed and thought perhaps I should invest in one.
The pool offers a welcome respite from the heat and humidity with it's clean, cool water.
It is fun to see the myriad creatures that call Stef Surf home. You've got your usual spiders and bugs, but then there are the very colorful crabs that occasionally stare back at you from the kitchen window. They are not happy or sociable, so don't bother trying to strike up a relationship.
You will quickly learn to appreciate the multiple, wonderful air conditioners . As you ascend the narrow spiral staircase, you start to miss the air conditioning around about the seventh step. A few more steps up, and hallelujah, the upstairs air wakes you up.
Liz, the concierge, was very helpful. She can lead you in the right direction if you need some ideas of what to do.
So unpack and enjoy the property and the hospitality.
The place is waiting for you and will not disappoint.
The villa was very clean and perfect for my family of four. It was close to the beach and other areas that we went to on excursions.
What a great place to stay with access to approximately 10 incredible beaches.
The owner was extremely helpful and prompt on returning any questions.
Amazing mater bedroom where you felt like you were waking up in the trees.
We stayed 5 nights with our 2 sons and enjoyed all of the amenities and services at Stef Surf: access to many amazing and quiet beaches within 5-20 min by car (the Potrero beach being average compared to the others), great tips from concierge service, private pool on the premises, exceptional set up for each villa with private balconies and terrace, lush landscaping that makes you feel like you are in the middle of jungle. We cooked our meals each night on the BBQ - full kitchen provided. Living Pura Vida to its fullest.