Cheap but safe beach lodging on the Pacific coast?

Old Dec 5th, 2006, 06:10 PM
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Cheap but safe beach lodging on the Pacific coast?

I plan to spend the month of February '07 in Costa Rica. Going solo as a, shall we say, aging-nicely woman, I'm not quite brave enough to rent a vehicle and take off on the so-called roads. I'd love to find a quiet place where I could rent a little cottage (cabina?) within walking distance of a beach and a village where I could hook up with a tour (or a taxi to a tour). Rest, relaxation and beaching are important during this month, but I want to experience more of Costa Rica than that. Through another forum I was told about a house I could rent for $650 a month in the Southern Zone, but not close enough for walking to the things I need. When I travel in the USA, I try to stay at simple Bed and Breakfast places that aren't in the high-tourist areas. Is that an option in Costa Rica? Maybe it's already too late to find affordable places to stay near a beach -- I've read that devlopers are buying up huge chunks of land and all prices are going up. Sort of like what's happening in Maine where I live.
Thanks for any advice.
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Old Dec 5th, 2006, 06:36 PM
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Ah, one of my favorite places that seems to fit what you describe:

Hotel Brasilito in the little town of Brasilito.

Nothing fancy, very simple--did you want elegance/luxury? Not this place! Very simple- about $40-50 per night. Just steps from the beach at Brasilito.

Brasilito itself is a little town just south of Playa Flamingo. You can catch a bus to anywhere from here and I'm sure the hotel folks could hook you up with some tours. This would be a good opportunity for you to experience a true little Costa Rican beach village that hasn't changed too much YET. A big Hyatt will alter that all too soon, and for all I know, landscaping for the resort is already underway since I was there in July.

There are several good restaurants in town--one of the most notable being Camaron Dorado. The Happy Snapper is also a good choice.

You can take a short walk up the beach to Playa Conchal, one of the prettiest beaches in CR.

There are lots of options for you. This is just a little place that is near and dear to my heart. I spent a week there alone once upon a time and thoroughly enjoyed myself.

If you are interested, be sure and request one of the two beachfront upstairs rooms. If those aren't available, I would look elsewhere.
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Old Dec 5th, 2006, 09:03 PM
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Boy, I think that sounds lovely. Looking at all the pictures, that's the CR area I would spend a month in February, but perhaps I would spend two weeks, then two weeks down a bit further. Just from peeks at pictures...

guanacaste, shillmac, tully, others......, what's your take on this?

I'd love such a $ place for longer stays, if there's access to the juicy luxury of a not so far away "upscale" place, pool bar, restaurant type of thing. But how welcome would one be as a "non-guest" at such places?

The beach, fishing village, local and
real tico environs would be the bigger draw for me for writing, relaxing, painting, drawing, photography, rejuvenating environs....

hmmm, planning my next trip already.
 
Old Dec 6th, 2006, 05:19 AM
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I have stayed at Hotel Brasilito and purchased day passes to Paradisus Playa Conchal. It costs about $100 for the day and that is very steep, but I'd typically go early, have lunch (all inclusive for the day), spend the afternoon, then go back to Hotel Brasilito, shower, change, head back to Conchal for dinner at the buffet and the evening show--also staying for disco time if I wanted. That's 9:00 a.m. until 2:00 the next day if you so choose!

They'll send a shuttle after you for $5--at least that was the plan a couple of years ago. Of course, when I first did this 3 years ago (have done it several times) it cost $65, so a little price gouging definitely taking place. When you consider all the food and drinks, though, not so bad.

I think they want to discourage it somewhat so the day trippers won't be in there using up all the pool chairs!
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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 10:34 AM
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brasilito is a good option, its still got a tico vibe.not a great beach but as shillimac pòints out its a good base for flamingo, protero,playa grande and conchal.
and brasilito is being turned into a big hotel resort so see it now!
i didnt think a lot of the food at paradisus playa conchal, usd100 seems a lot to me, why not just visit conchal beach, which is lovely and eat better elsewhere!?
playa ocotal is another nice small pretty beach in Guanacaste:

http://costa-rica.typepad.com/playa_...ome/index.html

uve got all the bars-shops-restaurants of playa del coco 5 mins drive away:

http://costa.rica.typepad.com/playa_...ome/index.html

villas casa blanca in ocotal is a lovely small hotel, modesta is the owner, contact her re rentals, but that area of CR is expoensive in Feb! also try vrbo.com

playa carrillo is lovely:

http://costa-rica.typepad.com/playa_...ome/index.html

playa samara is only 5km north with a nice beach, good restaurants.

http://costa-rica.typepad.com/playa_...ome/index.html

im not really sure ur best bet is to hire a villa for a month, ur going to be lucky to get anything at that price apart from the south or caribbean.
id stay in small hotels, youll get a good weekly rate- a lot have kitchenettes in the under USD100 price range- visit 4 different places for 1 week each maybe???
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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 03:30 PM
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Such good input! I love this site. I've already emailed Hotel Brasilito to ask about the upstairs beachfront room. Villas were too expensive for me and the villas casa blanca hotel was a bit out of my range, too. The idea of spending a week in each of four different places is appealing -- but I can't tell you how many hours I've spent suring the net checking things out before I latched onto the possility of the Ojochal house. I'm still open to other suggestions if anyone has them.
Any other suggestions anyone?
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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 05:29 PM
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We've looked at Villa Casa Blanca in Ocotal, Guanacaste, but it just seems too far removed from the beach. Cute little place, though. Lovely rooms. Funny thing, when we went to check it out, no one was around. I'm sure I've told this story on Fodor's before, but at any rate, we proceeded to look the place over top to bottom, inside and out, going into the bedrooms, taking a few photos--and left, having never seen another soul save for the caged parrots! Ghostly!
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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 05:33 PM
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By the way, we opted for the day pkg. into Paradisus because we planned to see the show in the evening--visiting kids (dancers) whom we had met years earlier up north. So weren't there for the food. I agree that some of those little restaurants I mentioned earlier in Brasilito are very hard to beat---also agree that $100 plus per day to visit PPC is outrageousp--but if you're going to pay that to see the evening show, you might as well go in the a.m. and stay the whole day! So our situation was a little unique.

I'll just never forget the sense of independence I felt (and peace) there at Hotel Brasilito for that week I was alone. No, not a great beach, but from that hammock in front of Apt. A, I sure saw some magnificent sunsets!
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