Fodor's Expert Review Hotel Punta Islita

16 km (11 miles) south of Playa Carrillo, Punta Islita, Guanacaste, Costa Rica

Overlooking the ocean from a forested ridge, this secluded and sublime hotel is luxury incarnate, with villas, casitas, suites, and spacious rooms sprinkled around the bougainvillea-bedecked hillside. King-size beds have rough-hewn wooden bedposts and filmy curtains, and bathrooms are tiled, with deep tubs and mosaic detailing. Casitas and suites have their own private plunge pools or outdoor whirlpools and private gardens with a hammock, one of the main attractions for the many honeymooners. A massive thatched palapa, supported by tree-trunk pillars, covers the main restaurant, which opens onto an infinity-edge pool with an endless ocean view and a swim-up bar. Buffet breakfasts (included in the rate) are excellent, as are lunches down at the breezy Beach Club, with its own oceanfront swimming pool. The food at the flagship Pacifica Restaurant, though good, still doesn't reach the heights you would expect here. Service is impeccable and very personal—everyone knows your name. If you overdo it with the activities here—including golfing, mountain biking, horseback riding, and zip-line tours—stop by the tranquil garden spa for massage treatments using local herbs. The hotel works hard at being sustainable; its extensive community involvement in creating the Punta Islita art village has helped earn it the country's top five-leaf rating.

PROS

  • gorgeous views
  • ultraluxurious rooms
  • top-notch service

CONS

  • isolated
  • distant, rocky beach
  • very pricey
  • steep paths to and from restaurant and beach club, but there is a shuttle van

QUICK FACTS

Resort
Green, Romantic, Service, Views
Sophisticated
Near the beach
$$$

HOTEL INFO

Phones: -2231–6122-in San José | -2656–2020-hotel | 866-446–4053-toll-free in U.S.

HOTEL DETAILS

16 rooms, 8 suites, 8 casitas, 24 villas
Rate Includes: Free breakfast

What’s Nearby