My 17-year-old son and I had an incredible six-day stay at Gaia in June, 2009, and I recommend it highly to those wanting a Costa Rica vacation complete with tasteful and beautiful accomodations, incredible food, and an attentive and helpful staff. And all in a certified eco-friendly luxury hotel, no less! It was an unexpected treat that the hotel was adults only because somehow I had missed that on the website. (There was no problem in having my teenaged son with me, though, since he is mature, respectful, and an experienced traveler.) I was grateful that there were no large, loud groups and no families with small children who needed extra attention from the staff. (I love some loud people and many small children, but they do not contribute to my relaxation!)
We were also happy to be only about five minutes from the beach and always found the staff ready and willing to give us a ride down from Gaia, which is on the highest hill in the area and surrounded by lush, tropical forest. The beach area, which borders a road with sidewalk merchants and local businesses, was relatively crowded with tourists, including quite a few young college age Americans, so we were always happy that we had our lovely hotel on the hill to retreat to later each day. We noticed that there are no beach front hotels, which I consider a mark of good planning on the part of Costa Rican officials, but we also noticed that the hotels and motels closer to the beach looked crowded and difficult to access by car or foot, thanks to the traffic. Some of them were also very close together and looked almost on top of each other.
The restaurant staff were our favorite employees because they were so kind and attentive at every meal, and the wine list was excellent. Other staffers were also very helpful in making arrangments for our tour of the Manuel Antonio National Park and for a boat tour off the beach, complete with snorkeling. One of the owners was usually present on the grounds and checked in with us frequently to see if we had any unmet needs. He was even kind enough to give us a complementary ride back to San Jose when we had to leave because he was headed there to pick up a friend from the airport.
We enjoyed our entire stay at Gaia immensely and would not hesitate to recomment it to others. In fact, my daughter has just become engaged to be married, and one of the first things she mentioned was a possible honeymoon at Gaia in a few months. Apparently she was impressed by our descriptions of the stay and by our photos of this beautiful hotel in the rain forest!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Gaia Hotel, Manuel Antonio's only 5-star resort and dining. Bask in our infinity-edge pools, dash Aveda bath salts into your Jacuzzi and relax enjoying the jungle and ocean views. Rooms feature A/C, cable, flat screen TVs, portable phones, home entertainment units, internet connectivity, coffee-maker, mini-bar, safety box, hairdryer, 24/7 room service and full spa services. Your personal valet sees to your needs, and our Nature Guide hosts an exclusive tour of our 12-acre Nature Reserve. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Gaia Hotel And Reserve
- Gaia Hotel & Reserve Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio National Park