by Hilarey Wojtowicz
Tulemar Bungalows & Villas offer families 34 different private guestrooms and suites that sleep up to 10 people at a time. The one-to-five-bedroom suites offer kitchens, decks, balconies and beautiful views of the Costa Rican coast. Enjoy the private beach with free amenities such as beach chairs, towels, umbrellas, kayaks and boogie boards. If you’ve had enough of the sand, head to one of the four pools (one of which is for adults only). Hike the jungle trails in the morning where you might just come across colorful toucans and fun monkeys or take the complimentary shuttle downtown for some shopping. The property has one full-service restaurant onsite, along with a Beach Bar & Grill, and is within two blocks of 10 more eateries.
Tulemar Bungalows & Villas was named to TripAdvisor’s Top 25 Hotels for Families in Central America for 2014.
Our Editor Loves
- Private suites that sleep up to 10
- Free beach amenities like towels, chairs and boogie boards
- Nature trails with colorful toucans
- Water Sports
- Children Programs
- Connecting Rooms
- Family Room 5+
- Onsite Dining
by Cat U
We had the best time at the Tulemar bamboo villas this past October, even in the off season. From start to finish, this vacation was absolutely stress free. Our private shuttle from the airport was easy and gave us time to stretch our legs and stop at a restaurant on the way to Tulemar. The owner of the restaurant even gave us a free bottle of hot sauce because we loved it so much. We got in late but Brian our concierge was still on site to welcome us and get us acquainted with our villa and all its amenities. We stayed in bamboo villa #1, it had absolutely everything we needed and then some, it was truly a paradise in itself. Looking back we wished we would’ve just relaxed more by our pool. Next year we will do that a little more. Our view was amazing, I still look back on pictures of it and could sit staring at it for hours. It was so nice waking up to that daily. The bedroom and bathroom were so glamorous and spacious. Honestly everything was beyond perfect. Brian, our concierge was literally always available, and even though we tried not to bug him, he helped us with so many things. He offered to take us to the grocery store, he arranged transportation, gave referrals for food and activities, and arranged activities. He was always so positive, full of energy, and happy to help. Our villa was cleaned every day around our schedules, and the amazing cafe milagro coffee was replaced daily. Our house keeper Brian was also so wonderful, and always greeted us with a smile.
We spent every morning walking the hilly property meeting and viewing the different wildlife that lived on site. We saw many sloths, many lizards, many birds, monkeys, and other adorable animals. We were awoken many days by a couple of macaws that flew right in front of our villa, and only awoken once by the noisy howler monkeys. The beach at Tulemar is something out of a movie. The black sand beach that has waterfall runoff running down it is so peaceful and serene. The bay is secluded and the water is perfect. The guys that work down at the beach so are hard working, so unbelievably happy, and personable. They learn your name quickly, and even set up your chairs/umbrella’s in advance for you once they get to know you. The mojito’s are super delicious as well. We loved walking to the beach in the morning on either 2 of the nature trails or on the roads, after the tide went down. There were tons of snails and different kinds of crabs. The monkeys and birds even visit you at the beach.
Outside of Tulemar there are many great restaIrants, and we felt extremely safe walking around Manuel Antonio and Quepos. One of our favorite things about Costa Rica is the people and the culture. Everyone was so friendly, so welcoming, everyone waved and smiled. Restaurants we recommend are Tule cafe, cafe Milagro, barba roja, hotel Makanda’s beautiful restaurant Arbol , samui Thai, and the restaurant inside of hotel mariposa, the views from the restaurant are insane.
We did the national park with a tour guide which I highly recommend. They are so knowledgeable and will show you so many things you’ll miss without them. We also did the ATV tour. Which took us an hour up into the mountains in a city called Las Vegas and to two different waterfalls. It was absolutely beautiful and when we were done we had a homemade meal waiting for us. We also hired a private chef for two of the night, the first night we met Jose we could see his passion for cooking and had the best meal of our lives. We had the mango curry snapper, tuna tartar, tres leche for dessert. Highly highly recommend. I used the leftover mango curry sauce for the rest of the week. We loved the food and conversation with Jose we requested him for the second time as well.
I could go on for 10,000 more words describing our trip. We already are planning a trip back next year.
Tulemar’s property itself is an amazing hidden gem. As much as I love them getting the recognition they
so very much deserve it wish I would stay a hidden secret for us to enjoy. Thank you Brian and everyone at Tulemar for the beyond perfect experience.
We were picked up by our drive from SJO and were a bit nervous about the 3+ hour drive ahead of us but we shouldn’t have worried. Our concierge Brian had arranged for William to be our driver and although some of the roads were a bit dicey we felt very safe and we’re able to sit back and enjoy the scenery. We had two stops en route, one to see the crocodiles and a bathroom break.
There is little new we can say that hasn’t been said about this fabulous resort. before arriving I honestly thought it really couldn’t be as good as the reviews...it was, and better! We were lucky enough to be able to stay on one of the Bamboo villas....an amazing property with an outstanding view. There is a small convenience store on property which carries the basics so no need to leave the resort if you don’t want to!
We ate at Tulecafe once which was most enjoyable and Victoria’s which was awesome!
The property is maintained to the highest standard and attention to detail is obviously important. Brian ensured we had absolutely everything we could need and nothing was too much trouble. I did think a personal concierge would be a bit intrusive as we’ve not had one before but Brian was perfect and didn’t bother us one bit, in fact he made our stay as perfect as it could have been.
We saw sloths, scarlet macaws, monkeys and an array of other creatures...too many to mention. We did the sloth tour, mangrove boat trip and the evening jungle tour, all of which I would highly recommend, but best to arrange through your concierge or Tulemar as they pick the best tour companies.