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“Wonderful place to revive and rejuvenate” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Blue Spirit

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Blue Spirit
Certificate of Excellence
wash dc
Level Contributor
52 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
“Wonderful place to revive and rejuvenate”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2013

I just got back from a week long retreat at Blue Spirit. Overall i really enjoyed my stay here. Here's more of the details:

1. The facilities are great. Everything is relatively new, including the main building. i was in a mountain view room with ac. The balcony outside actually looked into the middle of trees, did not have an over the mountain view. But the room itself is very nice, with a very large and comfy bed. We are here in end of April, and mid day is really hot - so thats when you really appreciate the ac. The mornings and evenings were quite nice, esp since the rooms have fans. Also can i just say the infinity pool with saltwater is not only gorgeous but feels AMAZING!! Since it is saltwater and not chlorinated, it feels so good against the skin, and somehow its at the perfect temperature. Its also squeaky clean and beautifully maintained.

2. Food is very good and very healthy. Its all vegetarian and super healthy. Desserts are served 3 times a week at dinner. They serve fish 2-3 times at night also. Otherwise its all vegetarian, and lot of it is delicious. The cafe has smoothies, coconut drinks and other snacks and sweets, and those are also delicious. Before coming here, i was reading Dr. Fuhrman's book on focusing on eating food that's nutritionally intense - the food at this place would make him proud!

The only place i can compare this food to is the Pura Vida yoga resort in Alajuela, Costa Rica, and i would say the food here is quite comparable to there. I would say Pura Vida's food is marginally better, and they serve fish or chicken and dessert every night, but both places are excellent. Overall your body will thank you for giving it so much delicious and heathy food every day that you stay here.

3. Service was good - we met and talked to quite a few of the staff, and they were all very friendly and helpful.

4. The location is great. You can hear the howling monkeys quite a bit during the day. Whether you hear them early in the morning depends on what type of room you signed up for - i never heard them from my room in the mornings, but i saw a few of the howling monkeys in the trees outside my balcony on one of the evenings. . Also the monkeys move in packs and do move around, so just because you hear them one morning does not mean they will be there again the next morning.
5. The beach is barely a 10 min walk downhill. But the path downhill and parts of the beach are rocky, so bring water sandals. The water is warm and wonderful. Since the beach is a designated turtle preservation, no commercial development is allowed there. so it is very much in its natural state - and often when you go for a walk, there is barely anyone else around. Its like having a private beach. But remember, this is not like a typical caribbean beach - no pure white sands or turquoise waters, no restaurants etc, but still very nice nonetheless. Playa pelada nearby is a little nicer - sandier, less rocks, and you can eat at la luna and see the beautiful sunset - but you will need a cab to get there.

6. We were there as part of a yoga/pilates retreat, and had a great time. We used all 3 yoga studios, and skyhall was always our favorite - its definitely the most spectacular yoga studio i have ever seen. The ocean view as you do the yoga poses is just hard to beat.

7. I had a massage with Chantal, which was very relaxing. I was surprised that lymphatic drainage massage was not an option at the spa, but they did have all kinds of other holistic treatments and massages available.

8. Our retreat group was very active - i spent 4-6 hours in yoga and pilates classes every day, and really lucked out because instructors in our group were amazing, and the group itself was very open and quickly came together as a small community. But the schedule really depends on what particular retreat you sign up for ( e.g. one of the other retreats there at the same time had a really small grup, and only one yoga class in the mornings). So beyond the classes, the pool and the beach, i did not have too much energy for doing the excursions or tours - and it was not my first trip to costa rica. But yes, to get around, you definitely need a car or a taxi. Two people in our group rented their own car, and were planning to drive around to other parts in costa rica after the retreat. The resort is a bit isolated - you can't just walk out of it and into hustle and bustle of a beach town - getting to guiones town is a 45 minute walk on the beach, or a 15 minute cab ride.

9. Airport pickup when i arrived was quite confusing. The person from blue spirit was not standing there with a sign. After a while, one of the other gentlemen from a local car company asked who i was looking for, and then told me the blue spirit group was hanging out at the airport cafe. so i stepped out to where the taxis are and the cafe was 2 doors down. That's where i found the others also waiting for the blue spirit shuttle. So if you see no one with a sign upon arrival, feel free to ask one of the other people at the airport waiting with signs - they are very helpful.


As for areas of improvement, i really had 2 in mind:

1. I was concerned about how often the yoga mats are cleaned. The yoga mats avl for use in the studios are actually quite nice. But we saw a small spray bottle with cleaning solution only on one day for us to use in the entire week - on other days, there was nothing around for the students to wipe down the yoga mats after use. Since there are lots of studies out there on how germs spread very easily from shared yoga mats, i was very surprised by that. I heard they do clean the mats, but I am pretty sure that does not happen after every class - because sometimes classes in the same studio can be almost back to back from one group to another. Those studios can get quite hot, so some people in our class, esp the men, were sweating profusely - its like they were leaving mini puddles on top of those mats, so i would not want to be someone who uses the same mat afterwards! There is room for improvement there - and i was really glad i brought my mat with me.

2. it would be nice if they offered some kind of basic laundry service by the pound. Every body is coming for at least a week, so having some basic laundry service would be a big plus.

By the end of the week, all of us were leaner, more toned, and clothes were getting a little looser. I ran into two people who had been there for 2 weeks, and some of their shorts were almost falling off them. This is a great place to come and revive and get into healthy eating and fitness. Overall i had a great time, and would certainly consider coming back in the future. This is a place to rejuvenate and relax and tends to attract people interested in wellness - but if you are looking for a typical four or five star hotel and the usual amenities, this is not really for you.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
10 Thank purplefeva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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151 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (72)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 April 2013

Just got back from my blue spirit retreat and feel amazing. The combination of healthy but tasty vegetarian food, gorgeous setting and a daily regiment of yoga and pilates (special to my retreat) has refreshed me and left me ready to come back from vacation and tackle the world. Well maybe not the world but I certainly feel like I got a reset button on life. Oh and while I haven't weighed myself yet, all my pants are suddenly loose and I'm pretty sure I must have lost at least 5 pounds. I hovered between a review of 4 and 5 because there are a couple of details that I thought could have been improved like having snacks and juice available throughout the day rather then for purchase at the cafe and being able to flush toilet paper in the toilet (though to be fair it is an eco friendly resort so I'm not sure that's even possible). That said, this was one of the most special and relaxing vacations I have ever had and I couldn't recommend it more so I went with the 5 star excellent review. Really a must do retreat for anyone in need of break. I would recommend researching your retreat thoroughly though as most of your time is spent with your fellow retreat participants and doing the retreat activities. Our instructors were AMAZING but I would imagine the experience a little less special with lesser teachers. Have fun and enjoy!

Room Tip: I stayed in the nature suite and was a little scared at first when I arrived in the pouring rain as...
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank agngjcsc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 February 2013

Stayed at Blue Spirit in Feb.'13 as a participant in an Omega workshop. Omega holds workshops at Blue Spirit for 6 weeks during the winter. I stayed in an eco lodge but there are a range of accommodations from hotel rooms to nature suites to tents. Meals were included and are vegetarian oriented with eggs and fish. No meat. Staff was friendly and very accommodating to my food allergies. The terrain is hilly so it is a hike to get from place to place or to the beach on the spacious and beautiful property. Great views and quiet nooks. The buildings and landscape are well designed. The atmosphere is very welcoming. I felt like I was back in camp. The cafe/ bar serves beer and wine and a limited menu. The programs/teachers I attended were excellent. The price which included the workshops was reasonable.Blue Spirit is a little isolated, probably not suited for the casual tourist, but provided me with the perfect spiritual retreat I was seeking.

Room Tip: Look at website for variety of room selection. Howler members start at dawn esp in the more natural...
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Cam627
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Grand Rapids, MI
Level Contributor
17 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 142 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 December 2012

We visited Blue Spirit in December 2012, and while the resort itself is decent we found the location to be less than we expected.

We have been to Costa Rica many times, and one of the things we most enjoy is being able to experience the culture and wildlife while we were there. We found both of these to be a bit underwhelming in the area of Blue Spirit. There is a strong touristy surf vibe in the surrounding area, but other than surfing there isn't a whole lot to do outside of the in-resort activities of sitting by the pool or sitting on the beach. The excursions listed on their site are literally the only ones available in the area. The Nosara peninsula is also rather devoid of wildlife, and we didn't see much other than the howler monkeys around the resort.

As far as the resort itself, the food was above average and the staff was very nice. The Hermitage room we had was extremely small, but the suites and rooms with AC are much more comfortably-sized. The resort property is clean and well-maintained.

The road leading up to Blue Spirit is a ~45km dirt road full of ruts and potholes, which makes traveling around the area rather unappealing and expensive. Cabs into Guiones (the "shopping" village) are $15USD each way, but Blue Spirit offers a free shuttle service on Wednesdays. You can also reach Guiones by walking down the beach during low tide.

The beach outside of Blue Spirit is generally rocky, but has some nice sandy areas when the tide is out. Further down the beach turns to sand and is quite nice and generally very clean with none of the "wash-up" trash you see in other areas of central america or the caribbean.

Overall, if you are visiting Blue Spirit for a retreat you will probably find it very nice and enjoyable. If you are visiting it to experience the country or to use it as "home base" for your own travel or excursions you'd probably be better off going elsewhere.

Room Tip: Hermitage rooms are small. Other rooms seem to be decently sized, and the Nature Suite we visited wa...
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank GR_travels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York
Level Contributor
16 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 December 2012

I suppose you go on a yoga retreat to get back to the present and to stop sweating the small stuff. Well, Blue Spirit will give you ample opportunity to put that attitude into practice!
First, I must say, the property itself is stunning. Beautifully located on the Guanacaste coast of Costa Rica the property sits on a hill with water surrounding you from almost every angle. The rooms are very simple but that was the one thing that I did find to be as advertised. As an eco retreat you're not going to find a lot of creature comforts but they're clean, nicely decorated and well maintained (be aware however, there are no hair dryers in the rooms).
So, why is this just an average hotel. Because of all of the things they don't tell you. Here's what you need to "know before you go". If you are using the hotel's transport, keep a keen eye out when you exit customs at Liberia. The drivers are there but you have to find them. And they might actually leave without you so don't linger at the airport. It is most definitely a two hour drive and the last twenty minutes or so is on a dirt road. You won't see a paved road again until you return to the airport. The charge for the transport will be on your bill when you leave.
That brings up the subject of money. You need money, lots of it. The website suggests you bring $500 USD and I think that's about right. You have to tip the drivers and the spa therapists in cash. If you do any excursions, you have to pay the driver in cash. If you buy anything in the gift shop you will get charged 13% tax, unless you pay in cash. You can charge the cafe/bar items to your room but you sign the ticket at the beginning of the evening and don't really know what ends up being charged by the end of the night, so I would suggest cash.
If you are staying in an eco lodge, you are going camping. They're very nice, but you are camping, you will walk up to the shared bathroom in the dark, at night back in the woods. You are also 300+ stairs away from the lodge so pack your things for the day!
I think the most shocking element was that this is not an adults only resort. There were kids running around all week. Not at all what I expected at a yoga retreat. Also, the staff is as much a guest at the hotel as you are, eating the meals with you, using the pool and other facilities.
To end on a positive note, the food was excellent, the excursions were well done and it is a beautiful and relaxing place. I would go back, it would have just been helpful to know a little more what I was getting into. But if luxury and service are what you're looking for, you should look somewhere else.

Room Tip: The rooms really are on a sliding scale of luxury (a/c, views, etc) to economy (roughing it). All a...
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank TravelsfromMadAve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bayahibe, Dominican Republic
Level Contributor
128 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 November 2012

I needed to get away and simply "be" and this beautiful place met every expectation. The meals are simple, local fare. The staff friendly, caring and not intrusive. The views -amazing. The beach, breathtaking any time of the day. The divine massage in a tent tent surrounded by jungle? Once I figured out that the howler monkeys were part of the charm, I tuned my body to their rhythms (sleep early, wake early) and all was fine. Blue Spirit is not for everyone, but as a single woman traveling alone I felt safe, totally able to let it all go and just be. I can't wait to go back.

Stayed February 2012
Helpful?
4 Thank NeophyteHiker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 November 2012

I went here for an acupuncture seminar and had one of the best travel experience ever. The ocean is clean and warm and the beaches are so beautiful. I can say enough good things about the staff and locals. Everyone was very friendly and helpful I have a VERY POSITIVE experience of the shuttle to Liberia. Somehow our driver safely managed to get around a national bike race on the only road to Liberia, getting us to the airport on time. The food was very healthy and mostly delicious - the highlight was the fish 3 times per week and the fruits are amazing! The accommodations are simple, but very clean with nice finishes. The staff was extremely helpful in setting up excursions, such as horseback riding (right along the beach!) and zipline capopy tours. Overall I would totally recommended Blue Spirit and go again myself.

Room Tip: The hermitage rooms are affordable, but I recommend the floor above for more space and a better view...
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Dan A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Blue Spirit

Property: Blue Spirit
Address: Playa Guiones, Nosara, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Nosara
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 24 Speciality Lodging in Nosara
Number of rooms: 65
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Blue Spirit Costa Rica provides an extraordinary setting to all who are dedicated to spiritual transformation, personal development, and environmental sustainability. Perched on a hilltop that overlooks the Pacific Ocean and a three-mile long white sand beach that is protected as a turtle refuge – Blue Spirit offers an extraordinarily beautiful and natural setting on one of Costa Rica’s renowned beaches, supporting your retreats, workshops, and trainings to be a deeply nurturing and unforgettable experience.Blue Spirit is located in one of the world’s Blue Zones© which inspired the name Blue Spirit. According to author Dan Buettner, the Nicoya Peninsula is one of five Blue Zone’s in the world: a Blue Zone is an area where people live the longest and report the highest levels of well-being. While visiting Blue Spirit, you will feel the resonance of a vibrant, inspiring, and healing energy, because of the rich subtropical environment, and the cultural lifestyle.Your stay at Blue Spirit offers you a comfortable and elegant accommodation of your choice, delicious gourmet vegetarian cuisine, a salt-water infinity pool, koi pond, café, gift shop, spa and longevity services, outdoor excursions, and complimentary wireless service.Blue Spirit was founded by Stephan Rechtschaffen who also co-founded the renowned Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY. He is a nationally recognized holistic physician who lectures on health, wellness, nutrition, longevity, and time. These interests have drawn him to living and working in the more mindful and slower paced environment of Blue Spirit in Costa Rica. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Blue Spirit Hotel Nosara
Blue Spirit Costa Rica/Nosara

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