We arrived in the early evening at Punta Islita. We had left it's sister property El Silencio earlier for a day long transport via Arenal volcano and Tabacon hot springs. Our driver Jimmy, setup through the Punta Islita group, was fantastic!
Marvin met our van with cool towels. I wondered what that was about but figured it out in about 30 seconds. It is hot and humid in Guanacaste! Especially when compared to El Silencio which felt about 20 degrees cooler. Marvin checked us in to room 23, which I think is a junior casita. As a Marriott gold on a points stay it was the best upgrade we had ever had! The room was large, the bed comfy and the view was fantastic. It was also close to the pool and restaurant, which my knees were grateful for (less steps). One common theme I've noted in these reviews: most people seem to think they have the best room! That is a good thing because room 23 might not be available next time we visit (and we will).
Marvin took great care to ensure our stay was a memorable one. Activites included zip lining, the macaw project, river kayaking to the ocean and the cooking class. All were great. A word about the cooking class: don't eat before hand. You will make ceviche, then eat it at a table overlooking the ocean, then you'll make Costa Rican chicken and rice, eat it and then dessert is a type of bananas flambe. And you get the recipes to take home. We really enjoyed that class. Viales was a great guide on our kayaking trip.
Breakfast was included and it was perfect with a million dollar view. Fresh fruit, coffee, juice, pancakes, french toast (!), quesadilla, you name it. We ate at 1492 and Kmbute, an offsite restaurant that the hotel provides a shuttle too. This is an interesting point about Punta Islita. The sense of community is pervasive. What is good for the hotel is good for the village of Islita, Kmbute and the guides and drivers. Everyone makes a living and ensures you have a memorable stay at the same time. They really pride themselves on ensuring you have not a good stay, but a great one. The wait staff was fantastic especially Antonio and Giovanni. Antonio's "whatever you say, goes" line was priceless. I even use it back at home with my wife (she loves it).
As someone else mentioned, we had bugs and a small scorpion or two. A quick google search found they weren't deadly, more like a bee sting and that they were as interested in avoiding us as us of them. My wife is deathly afraid of bugs and I was worried that no matter where we went, this was going to be an issue but it never turned out to be. We didn't have that many and once I figured out the scorpion wasn't a big deal, life went on. I think I know how they get in though. Our room attendant spent a lot of time ensuring things were just right but the front door was open to the outside which I assume is a general hotel policy. I don't know how you get around it without lugging a movable screen door around but I'm pretty sure that's how they get in. We saw maybe a dozen bugs (mostly flies) in six days so I don't want people to get the idea that it's a big issue because it's not. Just be aware, knock your shoes together before putting them on, use common sense and look around. It's the rainy season in Costa Rica.
We like to go different places when travelling, but if I could come close to duplicating our entire trip to El Silencio and Punta Islita the next time we come, I would be very happy with that.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Punta Islita is the only beach resort in Costa Rica to offer a full menu of complimentary tours, activities, and experiences. These include favorites like canopy zip-lining, horseback riding, monkey quests, and sea-turtle spotting. Plus unique experiences like creating art with local community artists, traditional cooking lessons, golf clinics, and more! Set in a secluded ocean cove in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Its award-winning planet-friendly, people-positive model offers a unique opportunity to fully engage in intense eco-adventures and authentic cultural experiences. The property features Deluxe Rooms, Suites, and fully-outfitted Private Villas. Ideal for honeymoons, relaxation getaways, family vacations, extended stays, or destination weddings. COMPLIMENTARY SHUTTLE AVAILABLE FROM LIBERIA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (LIR) PLEASE CONTACT US TO SCHEDULE ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Punta Islita Hotel
- Resort Punta Islita
- Hotel Punta Islita