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Coral Hill Bungalows 3.5

Cahuita, Province of Limon, Costa Rica

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Just three bungalows sets the tone for a quiet, intimate, and private stay
  • Bungalows have private porches and hammocks
  • Playa Negra beach and restaurants are a five-minute walk away
  • Cahuita National Park is four minutes away by car
  • Extensive free breakfasts with eggs any style, bacon, and a fruit platter
  • Dinner can be arranged on-site
  • Minibar in lobby area runs on the honor system, selling soda, wine, and beer
  • Sloths, monkeys, and tropical birds hang out in trees on grounds
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout
  • Pet-friendly 
  • Tap water safe for drinking

Cons

  • Dinner only served at hotel with certain packages and added fees
  • No swimming pool
  • No TVs or phones in rooms (a pro for some)
  • Minimum occupancy of two guests per bungalow (a pro for some)

Bottom Line

The three-and-a-half pearl Coral Hill Bungalows is a quiet and intimate stay for couples and duo travelers, as there are only three bungalows on the property. Standalone bungalows are made of carved wood and include private porches strung with colorful hammocks. Lush, manicured grounds are home to natural flora and a slew of sloths, monkeys, and birds. There isn't a pool or full restaurant here, though breakfast is included in the room rate and Playa Negra beach is about a five-minute walk from the property. A lack of TVs and telephones on the property adds to the unplugged nature of the bungalow-and-breakfast property. 

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Scene

Serene and secluded in the jungle

It's hard to imagine being stressed out during a stay at the bed-and-breakfast-style Coral Hill Bungalows. Already located in the quiet town of Cahuita, the intimate hotel is set off an isolated, stony road with almost nonexistent traffic. The hotel's three bungalows and owners' house -- the outside of which also doubles as the lobby/breakfast area -- are surrounded by rich garden grounds on all sides. Trees, dense bushes, high ferns, and colorful flowers border and arch over both paved and unpaved pathways, with sloths, monkeys and exotic birds calling their branches home. Since each of the three rentable bungalows have a maximum occupancy of two people, there are minimal chances of being disturbed by any noise (other than howler monkeys in the morning) or interacting with fellow guests other than at breakfast time. This also means that the hotel is geared more towards adult couples than larger families or ones with small children. The couple that owns Coral Hills is always on-site and available to assist with any needs.

Location

Tucked quietly in the sleepy, nature centric town of Cahuita, 30 minutes outside Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

The Coral Hill Bungalows are located in Cahuita -- a coastal city in the province of Limon known for its Caribbean culture -- about 30 minutes outside the buzzing Puerto Viejo de Talamanca by car. The bungalows are housed on a still dirt road that doesn't get much traffic at all, adding to the privacy and tranquility of the quaint locale. This small area of town is overall sleepy and quiet with a small strip of restaurants dotted along the popular surf beach, Playa Negra, which is a five-minute walk from the hotel. For those who want more dining options and a slightly busier scene, the main Cahuita village is three minutes away driving and, for nice days, a 20-minute walk. The area's biggest natural attraction, Cahuita National Park, is less than a five-minute drive away. Juan Santamaria International Airport, the region's primary entry point, is three and a half hours away by car.

Rooms

Quirky decor and spacious bathrooms, but can be a bit buggy even with the mosquito nets

There are three standalone bungalows on the property: Toucan, Calibri, and Mongo Congo, with a maximum occupancy of two people each. Each is made up of carved wood and includes a private wraparound porch and views of the lush garden grounds. Four-poster beds are flanked with bamboo poles and made up with white bedding and orange pillows; mosquito netting adds an element of romance but doesn't always keep the bugs out. Colorful artwork lines the wall and surfaces are composed of polished wood; the bed frame and desk chair have been carved to resemble shooting flames. Built-in cupboards hold an electronic safe, hangers on a hanging rod, and an extra blanket. None of the bungalows have TVs or phones but Wi-Fi is free. 

Huge bathrooms have frosted glass bricks and colorful mosaic designs over the open air shower. Sinks are hand painted with images of plants and birds. The shower has two shower heads -- one overhead waterfall fixture and another mobile nozzle -- that function at the same time. 

Features

Free parking, Wi-Fi, and breakfast -- but no pool

Coral Hill's selling point isn't a laundry list of extras and features. There's no pool here and a short walk is necessary to access the beach. The highlight here are the free, extensive breakfasts served in the morning. The couple who owns Coral Hill go out of their way to provide a personalized gourmet breakfast of fresh squeezed juice; coffee; a variety of locally grown fruits like pineapple, guava, and papaya; a tray of fresh baked breads; eggs; meats; pancakes; French toast; and omelets. Note that breakfasts are timed for early risers who want to get a head start before morning tours and excursions, which staff is happy to help set up and book. Dinners are available only with certain booking packages. Additionally, there is free Wi-Fi, free parking, and drinkable water from bungalow faucets. Pets are allowed. 

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Address

Calle Humphrey, Playa Negra, Cahuita, Province of Limon, Costa Rica