If you're a seasoned traveler you're probably still looking for the property to top your list of the world's best; a place that truly takes your breath away. Well, we think we may have discovered it, perched on a mountain in Costa Rica's Southern Zone. Hailed by Forbes as "the most glamorous romantic resort in Costa Rica," Kurà Design Villas truly is that, and more.
Kurà Design Villas is a minimalist masterpiece of six luxury hillside villas built in the cantilevered midcentury modern style. The location, the layout, and the unique style create a vibe of exclusivity and a definite wow factor perfect for your luxury Costa Rican vacation. To find such a cosmopolitan and luxurious resort in Costa Rica is unusual. In fact, this may be the only one.
It's probably important to note at the outset that Kurà Design Villas' exclusive ambience is the product not only of its lovely and visionary architecture, but also its location at the top of a mountain via a steep and unpaved winding road. The trek up the mountain requires a 4WD vehicle, or if you’re a timid driver you can call and Kurà staff will come and collect you from the village below. But the schlep is well worth it, and while paving the road may eventually happen, we're not so sure we'd want anyone else to find this secret oasis!
This peerless property, including its sexy "Ibiza"-type vibe, is the product of a young, hip, and charismatic local couple: Alejandra Umana (a biologist) and Martin Wells (an architect). Originally from San José, they wanted to create a property that paid tribute to the best of their country’s environmental beauty and its heritage. Kurà does exactly that, with views to the misty mountains and to the Pacific Coast, particularly of the famous “whale tail” peninsula of Uvita, and design touches that invoke the original inhabitants and wildlife of the region.
Kurà’s villas are simply stunning, with two villas located underneath the infinity pool offering high ceilings and expansive terraces; and two junior suite villas that boast a unique canopy-level view where you can lounge in your double hammock and watch the birds such as toucans. Perhaps a tiny and luminous “poison dart” frog will even pay you a visit after a rain shower!
What luxury, what romance!
What luxury, what romance: Open plan design, showers with double rainfall-style showerheads, divans, clever storage space, a king-sized bed facing the view, and sliding-glass doors leading onto the spacious terrace. Mod-cons include plush towels and bathrobes; a private minibar, wine cellar and espresso maker; a personal safety deposit box; and an iPod docking station.
Now, the heart of this oasis is no doubt the infinity pool! Cooling off in the 62-foot saltwater miracle overlooking the Pacific Ocean as I watched a flock of toucans perch in a nearby tree as the sun set behind them is high up on my list of unforgettable travel moments. Top that off with a chilled glass of white wine at the outdoor lounge and bar area before a gourmet dinner. Paradise, and not far from heaven, either!
For a date night dinner request the romantic table, which is on the edge of the veranda overlooking the town lights of Uvita far below. For something really special (think proposal or anniversary), book dessert and a bubbly bathtub for two in the private spa. This is also where you should book a couples' massage from the friendly and expert massage therapists.
Kurà’s hospitality is outstanding. Staff bend over backwards for you, greeting you with welcome drinks, water, and chilled hand towels when you return from an excursion. You’ll want to actually visit that “whale tail” peninsular that you can see in the distance at low tide. It’s a natural sandbar formation, one of only a few in the world and part of Marino Ballena National Park. Incredibly, there are swimming beaches on each side of the “tail” and nestled in the left-hand curve is protected snorkeling, which you can kayak to. Kurà staff will recommend a friendly local guide to take you on a tour paddling through the mangroves and out onto the sandbar, observing the intricate ecosystem the whole way.
This remarkable and most-Instagrammable property is part of The Cayuga Collection—not your average hotel chain but carefully curated and managed ecolodges, resorts, and sustainable hotels throughout Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Some guiding principles form the backbone of the Cayuga experience: landmark properties in unique settings; a commitment to sustainability and luxury; respect for local culture and customs; impeccably trained staff who go above and beyond the standard benchmarks of the hospitality industry.
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