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“The Magic Hill to Paradise”

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Casa Chameleon Hotel Mal Pais
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Mal Pais
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 11 March 2008

In the freezing cold now, my husband and I are reliving our wonderful vacation at this paradise. This was a vacation of special moments. It is not a place where you even think of mundane things. For us, the stress just melted away after the first few hours of being there.

This boutique hotel( which is much more special than these words imply) is the epitome of the perfect escape. It is located up a steep hill, yet the hill is completely cemented and it is not far from anything.

We walked down to the place on the sand for dinner. Local food that was very good and very inexpensive. The walk back up the hill was steep, but only took us 5-10 minutes, pausing along the way. Note:Bring your flashlight

We drove to most places, because as they pointed out upon booking, things are very spread out here. It was actually the perfect location. We turned left for Marys restaurant, the canopy tour(worth doing even if you are afraid like I was), the fishing village, snorkeling, and the road to Montezuma. We turned right for the surfing beach, other restaurants and beaches. It did not take more than 5 to 10 minutes in the car to get to most places. It would not have been fun walking on the dusty roads. I felt sorry for the people on bicycles. The dust was too much on the main road.

Actually, after driving around the dusty roads during the day we considered this hill our gateway to Paradise! As soon as we would pull in the drive, we felt completely relaxed. The entire property has a serenity about it. We have never experienced such true service. There is a happiness about the place that makes it very special. As the last reviewer wrote, "There is a magic here".
There certainly is! We look forward to returning!

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank BFCanada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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335 - 341 of 416 reviews

Reviewed 11 March 2008

We discovered Casa Chameleon online. The more we read, it did sound like the place we wanted to visit. We usually vacation in Mexico and sometimes Hawaii. We have also been to the Virgin Islands, the Bahamas, and Puerto Rico, and Australia once(nice, but much too far for an annual trip) We do like smaller places. We do not enjoy all- inclusives or big resorts.
We could not have been more pleased with our choice. We felt that the resort was a hidden oasis in this town. We enjoyed using the maps and our explorations.
However, we loved having our private retreat to return to. We felt safe and comfortable every time we pulled into the gates. Everything was top notch. The villa was marvelous with the private pool. The views serene and spectacular.
Most of all, I would have to say the service rivaled that of any place we have ever stayed. Even those which were much more expensive. It was a wonderful vacation and we will return!

  • Stayed: January 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank spriestly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 February 2008

This is paradise. After reading the reviews I was excited but didnt know how amazing this place really is...

The villa's are magical...everything is thought of... the views take your breath away.

Its so wonderful you dont want to leave your room and the grounds but you have to because mal pais is amazing and this is just the jewel of the paradise...

Kevin is a great cook and I recommend you do the 4 course dinner...breakfast is great too! David, Bobbie and Anthony feel more like friends you have not seen in a while than staff...

there is a magic here...

enjoy!

Stayed: February 2008
2  Thank dagmaras
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 February 2008

My new wife is a genius! She read about this place in one of her bride magazines and I fought her for months. I really thought we should go to Hawaii for our honeymoon. When we were comparing the cost and what we would get it just kept bringing us back to Costa Rica. She kept showing me reviews on all of these sites and i finally gave in and we booked our costa rica honeymoon. We stayed at 2 other places before the chamaleon but it was chamaleon that made us want to go back to costa rica again. It really does make a difference where you stay. We want to go back for our anniversary. I would say dont take a chance on a honeymoon because its worth making sure it's special. Im very glad I listened to my new wife. I guess im learning fast, huh? Thank you to David for showing us what is so great about mal pas!

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank jimmyKan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2008

This place is off the hook! Never seen anything like it, anywhere! The parking lot was even cool! We had such a great time we already booked for November. Every single person there, the owners, staff were great, nice, and super cool! They all really want everyone to have a great time. The villas were first rate with every detail taken care of. Im talking about the regular villa. Cant imagine what the luxury one was like! My only regret is that we didnt just spend our entire vacation here. We will in November!

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank chncebk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 February 2008

We had an amazing surf vacation beginning in Nosara and heading down the coast ending up in Mal Pais! The surf was great, water warm, and no crowds! Driving was gnarly because of the dirt roads, bumpy and dusty, but a fun adventure! Definitely want to return and spend more time in Mal Pais at Casa Chameleon! Awesome hotel with a great view of the waves. The location was awesome because it's close to everything, but with the way the property is it's really peaceful and quiet. The views are just of the jungle and the ocean.
You feel like you're in the middle of nowhere. But, we'd hop in the car and in just a few minutes we were at a great surf break.
The service was the best ever!

David is the perfect host and always had great tips about where the surf was best for the day. He got a tip about a left break in Montezuma that was really happening and we took the back road to get there. He was right, it was awesome!

The chef was equally amazing and being vegetarians, he hooked us up with amazing meals!

Great place, great people!

  • Stayed: December 2007, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Skip17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 February 2008

We rented out all three villas for my parents anniversary and boy did we score! My father has been in the entertainment industry most of his life and all of ours. Read: SPOILED AND HARD TO PLEASE. My mother was concerned that the trip would be too adventurous for them at their age. My sister and I agreed that this was the place and moved forward with our plan.

We took a private charter from San Jose to Tambor. Very reasonably priced at approx. $150 per person for our own private plane. We could have taken the Nature Air charter at approx. $70 per person , but the flight times did not meet our international schedule. It was well worth it to have a plane at our disposal for the time we wanted. We had a pick up at the Tambor airport(loose word for patch of grass where planes land). It took approx. 40-50 minutes to arrive at the hotel.

The moment we arrived we were welcomed and shown to our villas. The grounds were beautiful and we were excited to smell the delicious lunch our chef was preparing for us in the outdoor kitchen! We were pleasantly surprised how well appointed and spacious each of the villas were. The two smaller villas had very good new remote A/C units, small fridges,coffee maker w/coffee(great Costa Rican coffee) a blender and a tea kettle. They had very large rain showers on slate rock with windows open to the ocean. There was also a mirror on the opposite side that reflected the ocean. My parents villa had a full size kitchen, separate living area and an artistic bathtub and rain shower. There were terrific organic snacks in a Welcome Basket(nice touch). All three had beautiful views!

My husband and I stayed in Villa Vista. Although my ocean view was more vast, my sister always had the monkeys and birds in front of hers(Villa Palma). Hers also had a beautiful view of the ocean, but was closer to the monkey trail of trees.

My parents had the luxury one and we spent many evenings dining on their balcony by their beautiful infinity pool. Not a plunge pool but an actual large pool. The Villa Vista and Villa Palma had queen sized beds(not double as I just read) and the Luxury had a king. I have a king in my master at home but, the queen was very comfortable and perfect for our stay. The view from the bed was so beautiful I would have slept on the floor!

We had the ENTIRE RESORT to ourselves and it was only $1000 a day. I usually spend that on a room at the four seasons! My impossible to please father was so impressed with the rooms and service and the overall trip he actually suggested we do this every year! We'll see if he actually follows through;) You have no idea how huge that is coming from him! He didn't even complain about there not being a television! We all couldn't believe how well we scored in every way with this place! We usually spend much more on vacations and I believe we all agree this ranked as one of the best vacations we've ever taken as a family. The SERVICE, ROOMS, VIEWS, LOCATION, and PRICE make this a standout amongst any Central American hotel. The fact that they have only 3 villas make this MORE THAN A HOTEL but a very special place to call our own! At least for the time we rented it out! Outstanding!

  • Stayed: January 2008, travelled with family
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5  Thank lovetoflyella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Casa Chameleon Hotel Mal Pais

Address: Punta Barrigona | Province of Puntarenas, Mal Pais, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Mal Pais
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Mal Pais
Price Range: £247 - £502 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Casa Chameleon Hotel Mal Pais 4*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Chosen as one of the "Best 101 Hotels in the World" by Conde Nast Publications' Tatler Travel Guide, Casa Chameleon hotel Mal Pais is a favorite with honeymooners and couples looking to relax and unwind in an enchanted adult only environment. Casa Chameleon is vacation as it should be: a warm welcome, rich privacy, authentic experiences, and endless adventure. Regardless of which Casa Chameleon Hotel you find yourself enjoying, you can count on handcrafted cultural experiences and endless adventure. At each Casa Chameleon property, it is our priority to help you slip seamlessly into the best of local tradition and cuisine-from cooking fresh-caught seafood side by side with our in-house chefs to paddling the coastline to sipping a nightcap in your private pool. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Casa Chameleon Mal Pais
Casa Chameleon Hotel Mal Pais Costa Rica

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