As published in The Florida Villager
Deplaning in Liberia, Costa Rica, I was excited to get my six days of relaxation and exploring underway. Darkness had fallen by the time I made it to the gates of the hotel. Upon approaching, I did a double take because before me I would have sworn were the gates of Jurassic Park. A pretty eerie feeling as the entrance looked just like it.
I was greeted by name as I exited the car and wasn’t met by a check in line but a smiling face who showed me to the sofa, handed me coconut water housed in a coconut and a cold cloth. She proceeded to sit down next to me and help me fill out the forms and then told me to enjoy my stay.
I spent the first 30 minutes walking around in awe. As John Hammond said in Jurassic Park, “I spared no expense” and this resort took their cue from that phrase. Not a detail was overlooked at the restaurants, of which there are 5, the pools of which there are 3 and a grotto or the beaches, which there are 2 complete with chaises, water stations, food service and someone always around to make sure you have what you need.
The way the resort is laid out, you feel like you are outside even when you are inside. All the spaces open to the balmy breezes and beautiful night sky. Back in my room, I slid the plantation shutter doors open and sat on the sofa that adorns my large, screened in patio and listened to the monkeys that populate the grounds. As the stars twinkled, I dozed off to the sound of the waves lapping at the shore.
I awoke to the little white-faced monkeys known as Capuchin, yelling for me to get up and start my first full day in Costa Rica. There are 2 types of monkeys on the peninsula, Capuchins and Howlers. During my stay, I saw only one baby Howler close up and the adults from a distance but the Capuchins would come up and take food from my hand.
The 4 Seasons sits on 1,400 lush, tropical acres overlooking the Pacific. On the property there is snorkeling, kayaking, SUP, kid’s club, rum tastings, biking, tennis, golf, yoga and a spa. If you are looking for more adventurous activities, the concierge is there to oblige. As for me, I had my foot in both worlds; one of relaxation and the other bound for adventure.
One day I just relaxed around the Quiet Pool and made friends with an Iguana who decided to keep me company most of the day. I took a massage at the spa and spent some time at sunset lounging in their roof top Jacuzzi overlooking the tiki torch lit beach. The next day I went zip lining at Witch’s Rock and then horseback riding through the dry rainforest. Hot off the trail, I grabbed a paddleboard and sat in the water watching a sea turtle swim by. Pura Vida! The bartender explained that the phrase means “all good, all positive things.”
The next few days were spent going on a “safari” with Origins and walking on volcanic rock. I joined Almaco boat excursion and spent the afternoon watching Spotted dolphin, Devil rays and turtles playing in the Pacific. I also spent time with my little friend Scrappy. He is a Pizote, which is from the raccoon family. Every day I would share my apple with him and discuss the state of the world, which, after all, was very narrow since he lived at the 4 Seasons!
On my last night in Paradise, I watched kids play in the surf as the steel band played. With the sun setting on the monkeys in the trees, it was at that moment all was good with the world. Pura Vida!