01 of 07
Villa Buena Onda: Secluded Luxury in Costa Rica
Villa Buena Onda: Extreme Privacy in Beautiful, Green Costa Rica
Villa Buena Onda is a secluded, adults-only, all-inclusive luxury boutique hotel in Costa Rica. This serene hotel is tiny and romantic, with only seven suites.
This Is Not a Beachfront Hotel -- It's a Place to Nest and Chill
Villa Buena Onda is not beachfront. It overlooks the beach from a hillside--but is a 15-minute walk from it.
Villa Buena Onda Is Off the Beaten Path in Costa Rica
Villa Buena Onda is near the Pacific coast of Costa Rica in the province of Guanacaste.
• The property is easily reachable, only 20 minutes from Liberia International Airport
The roads to Villa Buena Onda are rough and unpaved, and the area undeveloped. You may think you're in the middle of nowhere. But you're in good hands.
Villa Buena Onda Has a Really Cool Vibe
When you arrive, Villa Buena Onda is a pleasant surprise. This pretty inn was built in 2008 as a super-luxury private villa rental. It was converted into a seven-room boutique hotel in late 2012.
I found Villa Buena Onda a perfect place to "chillax." Its name means “good wave” in Spanish. But in Costa Rican slang, it means “really cool,” or “good vibe.” Truth in advertising!
Next: will you, personally, like Villa Buena Onda?Continue to 2 of 7 below.
02 of 07
Will You Like Villa Buena Onda?
Take this Quiz to See If Villa Buena Onda Will be Your Vacation Style
Villa Buena Onda may be your ideal Costa Rica hotel if:
• You like small, personal boutique hotels
• You’re looking for a quiet or romantic getaway in a secluded, sleepy location
• Or a small property to take over for a wedding or family reunion
• You seek a nicely designed, comfortable hotel, but can do without extreme luxury
• You like the ease of all-inclusive pricing
• You're looking forward to experiencing authentic Costa Rican cuisine
• You love a lush tropical setting
• You're not interested in nightlife and want to retire to your room after dinner
• You don't like vacationing around families with kids
Villa Buena may not be your style if:
• You want to be oceanfront, or at the very most a quick walk to the beach
• You like sizable hotels with a busy social life, activities, entertainment, and bars
• You like a variety of restaurants at your hotel
• You seek a family vacation (this is adults-only)
• You like cocktails before dinner and wine with dinner, and feel that booze should be covered by an all-inclusive plan (It's not here)
• You really hate humidity and mosquitos
• You like a full-service spa on-property
• For you, a hotel gym is essential
Next: Villa Buena Onda’s spacious rooms >>Continue to 3 of 7 below.
03 of 07
Rooms at Villa Buena Onda
Guest Accommodations at Villa Buena Onda
The seven rooms at Villa Buena Onda are all in the hotel's two-story main building. They are spacious, airy, good-looking, and filled with sunshine.
• The rooms are sparely decorated in contemporary style, yet colorful and comfortable
The Best Rooms at Villa Buena Onda
The hotel's top digs are the Ocean View rooms on the second floor.
• Huge sliding doors lead to large private balconies overlooking the pool and Papagayo Bay beyond.
Second place: two Pool View rooms on the ground floor, whose spacious patios have a hammock and partial ocean views. (One of these rooms is handicap-accessible.)
The Garden Room on the ground floor has a quiet rear view and two queen beds.
• It's ideal for gals' or guys' getaways
Amenities in all Villa Buena Onda Rooms
All rooms offer:
• King bed (except for the Garden Room)
• A large, spacious closet, plenty of drawers and a safe
• Spacious bathrooms with walk-in, mosaic-tiled showers
• And full-sized locally-made bath products by Raw Botanicals
• Flatscreen TV with 360º sound
• Free local and international calls
Free WiFI...But No Minibar
That's the good news and the not-to-good.
Next: dining and drinking at Villa Buena Onda >>Continue to 4 of 7 below.
04 of 07
All-Inclusive Dining (but Not Drinking) at Villa Buena Onda
All-Inclusive Meals at Villa Buena Onda (But Not Drinks)
Room rates at Villa Buena Onda include three a la carte meals daily (no buffets) and unlimited soft drinks. Alcoholic drinks are extra.
• Dining is intimate, with seven tables for two facing the pool.
Real Costa Rican Cooking at Villa Buena Onda
The menu features Costa Rican recipes and international dishes, using fresh, local ingredients. I liked a lot of dishes and can recommend quite a few...
Three Meals a Day, and Don't Miss Any!
The hotel's dedicated kitchen staff is skilled and versatile. Every meal is different and full of flavor.
Definitely try the traditional “Tico” breakfast, an option on the morning menu.
• This is like no breakfast you've had
• It offers eggs, gallo pinto (rice and beans), sweet fried plantains, and salty Turrialba cheese made on the slopes of a nearby volcano
• Instead of bread, you get and fresh-griddled corn tortillas
• Breakfast is the only meal which is available through room service, so take advantage
Lunch is light and delicious.
• For my midday meals, I leaned toward fish tacos or ahi tuna salad
• Lunch dishes are served with fresh local fruit
Dinner is a feast of Costa Rican creations with global accents.
• I loved the curried beef wonton dumplings with mango sauce
• I also liked the caught-that-morning whole red snapper with Costa Rican accompaniments: refried black beans, patacones (fried green plantains), and pico de gallo tomato salsa
Snacks and Drinks are Extra
Snacks and beverages outside meal times are not covered by the all-inclusive plan, and are charged to your room.
• You can't drink your own booze in the common areas
• An honor bar on the second floor provides drinks after dinner
Next: stuff to do at Villa Buena Onda >>Continue to 5 of 7 below.
05 of 07
Pools, Spa Services, and More to Do at Villa Buena Onda
Pool at Villa Buena Onda
The property's pool is lovely.
• It is two levels, with ocean views
• It's filled with natural saltwater, much gentler on your skin and hair than chlorinated water
• The pool offers a sundeck, lounge chairs, towels
• There's waiter service, too; soft drinks are on the house but beer and cocktails are extra
Fitness Options at Villa Buena Onda
The hotel does not have a gym. But guests have free access to the extensive fitness facilities at the nearby Coco Bay Estates Beach Club in nearby Playa Ocotal free of charge.
• Villa Buena Onda offers a free shuttle there.
Th beach club offers:
• A beach
• An infinity pool
• And a good gym
• A decked-out locker and shower room
• A tennis club (fees apply)
Spa Services at Villa Buena Onda
The villa doesn’t have a traditional spa. But you can arrange a spa service, performed on the second-floor terrace or in your room.
• Spa services include massages, reflexology, and the hotel's signature VBO Facial, using local ingredients
• Spa info and treatment menu
Yoga and Pilates at Villa Buena Onda
Private or semi-private Yoga and Pilates classes are available at an additional cost.
• Classes ae given outdoors on the breezy second-floor terrace
Cooking Classes at Villa Buena Onda
Villa Buena Onda offers free Costa Rican cooking classes. Here, you can learn to cook like a jefe de cocina (kitchen master).
• Try your hand creating empanadas, gallo pinto (rice and beans), and other traditional dishes
Nature Walks at Villa Buena Onda
Guests are invited to participate in guided walks of the grounds.
• Your guide will point out the tropical flowers and trees
• And monkeys that are cute but mischievous
• Plus Costa Rica's incredible bird life; here are 10 amazing avian species in Costa Rica
Next: smokin' outdoor recreation near Villa Buena Onda >>Continue to 6 of 7 below.
06 of 07
Things to Do Near Villa Buena Onda
Beautiful Beaches Near Villa Buena Onda
The hotel is a 15-minute ride to three local beaches, and the hotel provides a complimentary shuttle service (and the shuttle has a bar!)
• The beaches are Hermosa, El Coco and Playa Ocotal
• There are other beaches nearby: Playa Panama (20 minutes away), Playa Flamingo (45), Playa Tamarindo (an hour)
More Recreation Near Villa Buena Onda
There’s plenty to do near the hotel, and the concierge assists with arrangements.
• Watersports: sailing, sport fishing, surfing, scuba and snorkeling
• Land adventures: hiking, horseback riding, zipline excursions, birdwatching expeditions
• Golf: the 18-hole course designed by Arnold Palmer at Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo is 35 minutes away
• Catalina Islands, a 45-minute boat ride away
Fabulous National Parks and a Live Volcano
Three national parks within two hours of the hotel:
• Rincon de la Vieja National Park
• Palo Verde National Park
• Arenal Volcano National Park is three hours away, and worth it to see an active volcano close-up (shown above)
Feeling Adventurous? Cross the Border
Less-developed Nicaragua is an hour and a half away, offering an interesting cultural contrast and great photo ops.
Next: find out more about and follow Villa Buena Onda >>Continue to 7 of 7 below.
07 of 07