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-   -   Help with Osa plans (https://www.fodors.com/community/mexico-and-central-america/help-with-osa-plans-328555/)

lynla Jun 24th, 2003 07:08 AM

As owner of Casa Bambu, I wanted to correct a couple of inaccuracies posted by people who hadn't actually stayed there. One is bugs. This is not a big issue, even though almost all houses in the area are open. I've experienced much worse in New England and Texas! I've only used repellant in the evening when needed and this took care of it. Custom netted beds take care of sleeping. (Often I leave the net open, because I don't need it).

People were also concerned about the loneliness of staying in a house. This has never been a problem. We have wonderful American managers who live nearby, check in with the guests and help with the logistics of being there. We hire them to be your friends in the jungle! There is also a lovely Costa Rican family right next door who caretake the place and interact with the guests. And there is another bamboo solar house 100 feet away. Again, I've never heard from anyone that loneliness was a problem! If you want to interact you can, and if you want privacy, you've got it!

Staying in a house is a trade-off because meals aren't automatically provided - although a cook can be arranged. Also, to correct Ally's post, there ARE two small restaurants in the immediate area, in addition to the eco-resorts, as well as more spontaneous food options (traveling produce market, girls selling tamales, neighbor baking pizza, etc.)

It boils down to preference and the pros of a house (economy, privacy, etc.) vs. a lodge (meals, etc.) Either way, the area is amazing, the wildlife is everywhere and you can't go wrong!

Suzie2 Jun 24th, 2003 08:03 AM

Hi Casa Bambu,
I just looked at your web site and think I know exactly where the house is as I have spent quite a bit of time in that area. I believe I have walked by it several times. It is a lovely area. Martinas is a great place to hang out and if you are lucky enough to be there when they are having a party (Valentines Day is great!) you won't be disappointed.
I have never had trouble with bugs on the Osa.
I am glad this came up as it is something my husband and I would be interested in.


marilynn Jun 24th, 2003 09:25 AM

Hi Karen,
Yes, I drove down to Puerto Jiminez from Dominical. The Pan Am Highway was terrific and when we turned off to the Osa the road was good for about an hour (Ithink) then it was like the road between Manuel Antonio and Dominical. Not as bad as Monteverde! We had a Pathfinder so we forded streams after huge downpours last July. I prefer having a car as you are able to do as you please. Our guide traveled with us in the Osa so that was helpful - I leave tomorrow for our place in Tamarindo and can't wait as we have had the coldest, wetest spring in history here in the northeast. If you are up that way come and visit my husband and I at the Bahia Longosta condos #3A - we will be there for a few weeks and I would love to hear about your travels.We have lots of guests coming down to see the sights so it should be fun.
Marilynn Aymar

beachmama7 Jun 24th, 2003 12:16 PM

Dear Karenf--
I can only share with you OUR experiences in the Osa, and, yes, I think it is much rainier than other parts of C.R.
As I mentioned previously, we recently (early June) spent about a week in the southern part of C.R. We had torrential rain conditions, instead of the more usual tropical rain. It is hard to know what you can expect while you will be there because the weather is so unpredictable--especially lately.
For us, we regretted having spent so much time down south. In fact, we cut two nights out of our anticipated four nights in the Osa because it was clear the weather was getting worse, not better.
The car delivery was SMOOTH. We rented through Adobe, and they were prompt and courteous. The delivery man even spent a little extra time explaining all of the car's features. BTW, we never had any need for 4 wheel drive.
By the time we got to M.A., we were practically dancing from the elation of leaving the buggy, rainy conditions down south. The weather was MUCH better in M.A., and I was even able to get a tan from the time there!
It's up to you about whether you go or not. If I were you, I would not pay too much in advance. You can always add days once you're there, but it might be difficult to get refunds if you decide to leave early.
Best of luck!
Beachmama Marilyn

karenf Jun 24th, 2003 04:12 PM

Dear Friends, Thanks for all your help.I feel much better about driving there.It will be a better idea to rent in San Jose, drive to MA, and then see how the weather is. beachmamma, where did you stay down there? Marilyn, I have been to Tamarindo in January and got to see the turtles and go to Rincon. In fact, that was how we got hooked on Costa Rica. I saw a round trip airfare for Chicago for Liberia for $299.00 At that time it was cheap, so we grabbed it and went on the spur of the moment.Interestingly enough we got a round trip this year for $303.00 Chicago, San Jose.Those of you who have been lately, do you feel tourism is down there compared to last year? Just curious.

Ally Jun 26th, 2003 07:14 AM

Okay, I stand corrected. There were tons of spiders around when I was there, and as we eat by candlelight at night, the cicadas were bothersome while trying to eat. I assumed they would be in the houses without screens, but as I've said, I've been corrected.
And, walking from Lapa Rios, pass Bambu to the end of the road at Rancho Kapu, I didn't see any restaurants, but I guess I should not have assumed that there were none around.
I hope I didn't offend you lynla, and I did say property was great. I was only trying to give my observations having seen the house and walked around the area. God Bless.

Nicci Jun 26th, 2003 08:40 AM

Karen F

Sorry to chime in so late on this thread.
As a former guest of CASA BAMBU, I would highly recommend staying there if you like beachfront, hiking trails at the backdoor, wildlife everywhere, privacy and relaxation. Each morning we enjoyed our coffee on the porch front while watching the titi(squirrel) monkeys eating bananas out of the trees in our yard. On our hikes we saw Toucans, Scarlet Macaws, Bats, Sloths, White-Faced Capuchin Monkeys, Squirrel Monkeys, Spider Monkeys, Coati, Agouti and some type of black animal that looked like it had the head of a cat and the body of a weasel.

We didn't feel the need for a swimming pool because we were cooled off by the surrounding nature in the surf and while climbing the refreshing waterfalls. Since we were on the waterfront, there was always a nice breeze to cool us off and keep the bugs away. The insects were only a bother at night when they were attracted to the lights. This was not an issue when sleeping, as Lyn mentioned, the four post beds are entirely secured by netting and entered by zipper. While in bed, we enjoyed listening to the sounds of the ocean waves and the Howler Monkeys. The house was immaculately clean and provided containers to prevent ants and other varmints from trying to eat the food. We didn't cook our own dinners, instead went to Lapa Rios and enjoyed local Costa Rican meals prepared by the caretaker's lovely family. Lapa Rios picked us up from Casa Bambu so we would not have to hike up the hill. Valentin, the caretaker, has lived his whole life in Matapalo and knows the area like the back of his hand. He took us on a fantastic hike showing us wildlife, spectacular views and explaining effects of the medicinal plants.

One day we hiked up to Bosque del Cabo and enjoyed a drink at the bar. The service was very friendly and the grounds were nicely landscaped. However, it was a bit like leaving our adventurous Tarzan and Jane jungle experience for more modern conveniences.

We traveled all over Costa Rica and Osa was by far our favorite place. I'm not the roughing it type and loved staying at Casa Bambu. We look forward to returning someday.

beachmama7 Jun 26th, 2003 12:45 PM

Dear Karenf--
While in Matapalo, we stayed at Encanta La Vida. Suffice it to say that it was absolutely an AWFUL experience. I've written to the owner, delineating our terrible time, and I've asked him for a full refund. We are NOT fussy or particularly difficult guests, but this pushed all our bounds for decency. If the owner, Bryan, fails to respond to my letter, I will write here about everything that happened. As it stands, I definitely do NOT recommend Encanta La Vida, even though we stayed there many years ago and had a great time. More later!
Beachmama Marilyn

Suzie2 Jun 26th, 2003 01:11 PM

Thanks for the heads up beachmama,
We have spent years making our way through the hotels on the Osa (we enjoy staying at different ones each time). Will cross that one off the list.


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