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The Gilded Iguana

Nosara, Costa Rica

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gilded iguana surf hotel
gilded iguana surf hotel
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Modern surf hotel with posh amenities located a five minutes’ walk to the breaks of Playa Guiones.

Originally built in 1988, The Gilded Iguana has almost been around since the beginning of Costa Rica’s surf boom and due to a recent remodel, this charming surf hotel has never been better.

Designed by local award-winning architect Benjamin Saxe, the hotel features open breezy spaces with sleek modern touches, relaxed vibes, and lush landscaping. With an in-house restaurant and bar, multiple pools, hot tub, surf lessons, and their Surf Club (which gives you access to over 150 surfboards you can take for a spin), you’ll have access to everything you need for a pampered surf trip in paradise.

Location-wise, The Gilded Iguana is just 200 meters from Playa Guiones, one of the marquee beaches and surf spots on the Nicoya Peninsula.

If you’re interested in a more immersive experience, Lush Palm offers exclusive 5 or 7-night Surf Packages which can be booked with flexible dates. The package includes accommodations, daily surf lessons/coaching, video analysis sessions, surf theory, membership to their surf club (with unlimited surfboard access), and more. The surf coaching accommodates beginners to advanced surfers.

The Lowdown

VIBE: Relaxed modern oasis

LOCALE: Charming quiet beach town

ROOMS: 29 / various rooms accommodate 2 – 6 guests

FAMILY FRIENDLY: Yes 

CLOSEST AIRPORT: Liberia International (LIR)

PRICING: from $240 per night // 7-Night Surf Packages from $1,840 per person (mid season rates)

gilded iguana nosara
gilded iguana nosara

Features

Inside

The architecture and interiors throughout combine simple and unpolished materials such as teak, palm thatch, jute fabric, and concrete tiles with modern tropical furniture made with local materials and craftsmanship. Light-filled rooms feature indoor and outdoor showers and outside living spaces.

Outside

When you’re ready to relax after a full day of surfing, there’s no better way to do so than to kick back on a plush daybed at the pool or enjoy an in-house spa treatment. The hotel features numerous outdoor pools (including a hot tub and kid’s pool), surrounded by a peaceful picturesque deck area.

Eat & Drink

Daily breakfast is included with your stay, and the on-site restaurant and bar is open all day serving Mediterranean fare and Costa Rican favorites. From fresh seafood and pasta to ceviche and mojitos, you’ll find plenty of delicious options to refuel for another day in the waves. Live music Tuesdays from 6-10pm.

The Surf

playa guiones surf
playa guiones surf
playa guiones surf

Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula enjoys consistent surf all year long, with the peak season being between April and September, when south swells are frequent. Nosara’s marquee spot is Playa Guiones, a long beach with numerous, punchy sandbar peaks and a reef break at the northern end. While the user-friendly waves at Playa Guiones have become rather popular in the past few years, the surrounding coastline is home to a number of semi-secret spots. Advanced surfers might want to explore north or south to search out more powerful and potentially hollow waves.

WATER TEMP: 77 – 86 °F (25 – 30 °C)

PEAK SURF SEASON: April – Sept

SHOULDER SURF SEASON: Nov – Mar

SURF EXPERIENCE: Beginner to advanced

Details

CHECK IN: 3 pm

CHECK OUT: 12 pm

Rooms

Rates

SURF ROOMS:
Green Season (May, Sept, Oct): from $325
Mid Season (Apr, June, July, Aug): from $400
High Season (Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar): from $460
Holiday Weeks (Easter & Dec 20 – Jan 4): from $550


PREMIUM ROOMS:
Green Season (May, Sept, Oct): from $380
Mid Season (Apr, June, July, Aug): from $475
High Season (Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar): from $575
Holiday Weeks (Easter & Dec 20 – Jan 4): from $640


PREMIUM PLUS ROOMS:
Green Season (May, Sept, Oct): from $415
Mid Season (Apr, June, July, Aug): from $515
High Season (Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar): from $620
Holiday Weeks (Easter & Dec 20 – Jan 4): from $700


SURFER SUITE:
Green Season (May, Sept, Oct): from $435
Mid Season (Apr, June, July, Aug): from $550
High Season (Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar): from $675
Holiday Weeks (Easter & Dec 20 – Jan 4): from $715

Surf Packages (5 or 7 nights)

5-night Surf Package

 

What’s Included:

  • 5 nights accommodations in your room of choice
  • Daily breakfast
  • 3 x Surf Coaching sessions (90 Mins)
  • 3 x Video Analysis Classroom Sessions (45 Mins)
  • 3 x Surf Theory & Curriculum (30 Mins)
  • 1 Surf Fitness & Stretches session
  • Access to the Surf Club and over 170 surfboards to use
  • Strong fiber optic WIFI
  • Special Discounts on food and other services

RATES

Green Season (May, Sept, Oct)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room): from $2,075 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $1,262.50 per person plus taxes

Mid Season (Apr, June, July, Aug)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room) from $2,450 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $1,450 per person plus taxes

High Season (Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room): from $2,750 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $1,600 per person plus taxes

Holiday Weeks (Easter & Dec 20 – Jan 4)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room): from $3,200 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $1,825 per person plus taxes

*Rates vary depending on dates, occupancy, availability, and type of room. Please get in touch and let us know your desired dates and preferred room type for an exact quote. Triple and quadruple occupancy available upon request.

7-night Surf Package

 

What’s Included:

  • 7 nights accommodations in your room of choice
  • Daily breakfast
  • 5 x Surf Coaching sessions (90 Mins)
  • 5 x Video Analysis Classroom Sessions (45 Mins)
  • 5 x Surf Theory & Curriculum (30 Mins)
  • 1 Surf Fitness & Stretches session
  • Access to the Surf Club and over 170 surfboards to use
  • Strong fiber optic WIFI
  • Special Discounts on food and other services

RATES

Green Season (May, Sept, Oct)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room): from $2,925 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $1,787.50 per person plus taxes

Mid Season (Apr, June, July, Aug)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room) from $3,450 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $2,050 per person plus taxes

High Season (Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room): from $3,870 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $2,260 per person plus taxes

Holiday Weeks (Easter & Dec 20 – Jan 4)
Standard Surf Room (1 surfer, private room): from $4,500 plus taxes
Standard Surf Room (2 surfers, private room): from $2,575 per person plus taxes

*Rates vary depending on dates, occupancy, availability, and type of room. Please get in touch and let us know your desired dates and preferred room type for an exact quote. Triple and quadruple occupancy available upon request.

Good to Know

– The Gilded Iguana’s Surf Club is a luxe setup located along a path on the way to the beach and offers surf lessons, video coaching, photography, and guided surf excursions. Services can be booked a la carte, or you can become a Surf Club member for discounts on services, personal air-conditioned board storage, and access to all surf equipment (over 150 different boards for all levels and styles). Surf Club memberships are included in the Surf Packages outlined above.

– Mountain biking rentals, lessons, and excursions are available at the hotel, and the staff at the front desk can help coordinate a number of tours such as fishing, ziplining, snorkeling, and more.

– The hotel is family friendly and has a kid’s pool for toddlers and babysitting services available at an extra charge. The first floor rooms are more easily accessible with little ones, and if you would like a crib, just ask when booking.

Location

Nosara, Costa Rica

Nosara is both a district and a village on the Pacific Coast of the Nicoya Peninsula. Known both for its world-class waves and vibrant yoga scene, the village has seen extensive growth over the past decade, but still maintains its quiet Central American charm.

In addition to great waves and other adventure sports, Nosara is also home to a variety of fun animals such as white-faced monkeys, coatimundi, and olive ridley turtles. A tidal blowhole and numerous animal rehabilitation and wildlife refuges round out the experience at this Costa Rican staple.

Getting There

By plane: Nosara (NOS) is the local airstrip, and flights on the domestic carrier Sansa can be as short as 20 min from Liberia (LIR) and 45min from San Jose (SJO). The planes for these connections are small prop-engined aircraft.

The closest International airport is Liberia International Airport (LIR) which is a two and a half hour drive to the hotel, and San Jose International Airport (SJO) is a five-hour drive. You can rent a car, or the hotel can help arrange transportation from the airport. The price for transport in an air-conditioned minivan is around $150 per trip from Liberia, and $260 per trip from San Jose (a minivan can carry a group of 4 – 6 people with a piece of luggage for each person).

The Small Print

Terms and Conditions

CHECK-IN / CHECK OUT

Rooms are ready from 3pm on. Check-out is expected to be by 12pm. The front desk is occupied 24/7.

PAYMENT POLICY

Full payment is required to confirm your reservation.

CANCELLATION POLICIES

High Season
From January 03, 2022 to March 31, 2021
From November 1, 2021 to December 19, 2022

Medium Season
From April 01 to April 31, 2022
From June 01 to August 31, 2022

Green Season
From May 2022 to June 07, 2022
From September 1, 2021 to October 31, 2022

New Year Season
From December 20, 2022 to January 3, 2023
*Minimum stay of 7 nights

Easter
April 10, 2022 to April 16, 2022
*Minimum stay of 3 Nights

Medium & Green Season:
Cancellations requested 21 days or more before arrival are without penalty.
Cancellations requested from 20 to the day of arrival 100% penalty.

High Season & Easter:
Cancellations requested 36 days or more before arrival without penalty.
Cancellations requested from 35 to 21 days before arrival 50% penalty.
Cancellations requested 20 days before arrival 100% penalty.

Peak Season / Christmas and New Year:
Cancellations requested 66 days or more before arrival are without penalty.
Cancellations requested from 65 days to the day of arrival 100% penalty.

MINIMUM STAYS

Minimum of 3 nights from December 20 to 26.
Minimum of 7 nights from December 26 to January

CHILD POLICY

Children from 0 to 5 years old are free when they share existing beds in the room. To request a crib, requests must be made at time of reservation, there is a charge for this service of $20 per day plus tax. Availability is limited, so the hotel does not guarantee cribs for everyone who requests them.

PET POLICY

Pets are not accepted in the rooms or in the facilities in general.

OTHER

The Hotel has a NO smoking policy, ask about specific areas for smokers, before making the reservation or at the time of check in.