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Visiting Costa Rica: Arenas Del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort in Manuel Antonio & Horse Back Riding in Londres #GiftOfHappiness


Arenas Del Mar.
Paradise on Earth.

Our whole Gift of Happiness trip was absolutely amazing and at this point, we had finally arrived to our final destination. Arenas Del Mar in Manuel Antonio. We were scheduled to stay in this beautiful resort for four days and it was absolutely a dream to do so.


About Arenas Del Mar Beach and Rainforest Resort:

Arenas Del Mar is located on the Central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica about 2 miles from the nearest airstrip located in the town of Quepos (in the Manuel Antonio area). Quepos is a short 20 minute flight from Costa Rica’s capital of San Jose where international flights land at Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO). Driving from SJO takes about 3 hours.

The resort is situated on a cliff with direct access to two pristine sand beaches: Espadilla Beach and Playitas Beach. Our property overlooks the spectacular Manuel Antonio National Park and is located within walking distance of Costa Rica’s most visited national park.



From the moment we arrived, the staff was impeccable. They were so helpful, attentive and drove us to the main lobby (pictured above) to check-in. It actually takes about 5 minutes to drive from the entrance to the main lobby. Our drivers were so friendly and made us feel at home immediately. The lobby houses the Gift Shop, a bar and restaurant as well as the main pool. It is absolutely luxurious after getting a welcome drink we took in the grandeur and then walked down to our room with a beach front view.



Let’s face it, when we travel, we travel to experience new culture, see new sights and to live in luxury for a short while. Obviously, sometimes it’s great to experience the bare bones of certain areas but, in this case–Arenas Del Mar did not disappoint.

One of the many reasons that I don’t feel bad for living in the lap of luxury for four days is because this resort is eco-friendly and responsible and had 5 Quality stars in sustainability. That makes me feel great and appreciate this view of the main pool and where we would eat breakfast every morning while watching the ocean.






Welcome to Our Serene Getaway.

It’s no wonder why Arenas Del Mar was featured in Patricia Schultz’ ‘1, 000 Places to See Before You Die’ book. It truly is a place full of beauty, comfort, style, luxury and a location like no other place in the world. Not to mention, this resort has had many awards such as Best Honeymoon Spots, World’s Best Awards as #1 Family Hotel, Hot List of Top New Resorts and it has 5 Quality Stars for sustainability.

Our Amenities:
  • 122-square foot deck overlooking the Pacific Ocean
  • Covered deck has outdoor kitchenette and seating area
  • 129-square foot bedroom
  • Spacious bathroom with tiled shower
  • DVD player (DVD library at our front desk)
  • Accommodates two people (has a king-sized bed)
  • Recommended for couples who want stunning views of the Pacific Ocean

The rooms are exceptional, the bed was so comfortable, the bathroom was gorgeous and the shower was absolutely divine. It was definitely big enough for the both of us and it filtered in the most beautiful natural light while you showered. It came fully equipped with delicious smelling shampoo, conditioner and body wash and even the aroma was therapeutic.

Our room had the most spectacular views of the Pacific ocean, you can hear the waves lapping the shore all night. Our own private deck was stocked with a fridge full of snacks, a sink where you could drink right from the tap and a coffee machine. The chairs were a perfect place to take in the view and just relax or meditate.


Foods for the Gods.

Yes, on top of being an amazing resort, the food was absolutely delicious. We ate breakfast overlooking the Pacific ocean every morning and I ordered that dish 2 out 4 times for breakfast. Just looking at it makes my mouth water. It is a typical breakfast but, presented in a very gourmet style. Refried beans, egg, soft Tico cheese, eggs, veggies and salsa.

Just divine.

We ate at El Mirador Restaurant for both breakfast and dinner, we ate lunch in town at typical restaurants as we were out on excursions. That was another amazing part of The Gift of Happiness trip, the ability to take in local people and local food as we experienced the country.

For dinner, it was an exceptional array of gourmet dishes, steak, chicken, risotto and on the last night, they even cooked up a gourmet burger for us. It was delicious and the service was stellar. On one night, I wasn’t feeling up to making it to the restaurant and they sent me my meal via room service and the gentleman was amazing and even offered to set me up on our deck.  Just blown away by the attentiveness.

About El Mirador Restaurant:

El Mirador Restaurant is located near their reception area and pool, overlooking Espadilla Beach, Manuel Antonio National Park and the Pacific Ocean. El Mirador—which means “the viewpoint” in Spanish—has an open air, covered interior dining area and outdoor seating. Along with breathtaking views and gorgeous sunsets, the restaurant serves breakfast and dinner using fresh, local ingredients. Start your day with their complimentary breakfast: fresh fruits, homemade granola, warm muffins and breads, eggs, pancakes and of course, Costa Rican coffee. Their dinner menu includes highlights such as locally caught fish and other delicacies at this authentic full-service Costa Rican restaurant.


Saying Farewell.

Not good-bye because I will definitely always come back to this resort. It is a well-rounded, luxurious resort at an amazing location with staff that is above par. We got to know our servers and our valet drivers very well during our stay and they were never hesitant to help or make sure we were comfortable.

If you are planning to travel to Costa Rica, make sure that you put Arenas Del Mar on your list of places to stay. You will absolutely love the amenities, the service, the restaurants (1 in the main lobby, the other steps by the beach), the access to their beaches and the diversity of having the beach and rainforest all in one. To top it off, it’s a sustainable resort that makes the effort to respect our planet.

Next week, I will show you the excursions that we took part in while we were at Arenas Del Mar and a summation of our experience in Costa Rica.

For an out of this world and sustainable experience, stay at Arenas Del Mar.

[usrlist Sleep-Quality:5 Rooms:5 Cleanliness:5 Dining:5 Location:5 Service:5]

Have you ever stayed at beachfront resort and did you like it?

Let me know, til then–cheers m’deres!


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  1. It has been a few years since I stayed at a beach front resort but after seeing these pictures I really need to go again. And soon. Thanks for sharing.
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  2. Oh wow, all of those pics are simply gorgeous. Sounds like you had an amazing time hun! *hugs* I totally need a break away from this slushy snow, and work! Some place with a gorgeous waterfront, food and relaxing atmosphere. Sounds familiar right? I'm just gonna bookmark this page to show TheHubs… 😉
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    1. Yes, perfect place to get away with your Hubs. 🙂 And yes, I’m needing some of that food and relaxing atmosphere right now. LOL.

  3. I am in awe of the beautiful country and this amazing resort! I would find it very hard to come home, especially to this nasty cold, LOL. I have to say that it all looks amazing, but that shower is beautiful! I love the tile work 😉

    1. The tower was one of my favorite things. There was also one of those european cleaning toilet thingy to “freshen” up with. Not sure what they’re called. LOL. But, the shower was AMAZE.

  4. Oh my!! What an absolutely gorgeous place to visit. It is so amazingly clean and inviting – I could see myself happily living a few days in that paradise.

    1. It is actually very competitively priced and I think we would definitely go back. Make your dream a reality!

  5. I'm so jealous! This trip looks amazing. I need to visit costa rica soon.
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  6. What a gorgeous view! It seems like you all had a great time and that the service and amenities were excellent.

  7. Oh my gosh, I can't believe those photos are of a real place! It looks like a dream! I really hope I get to go back to Costa Rica so I can stay in some of the places you've reviewed!

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