Located less than 30 minutes from San Jose International Airport, THE RETREAT is nestled in the arms of a quartz mountain and overlooks a stunning balcony to the Pacific Ocean. THE RETREAT provides panoramic views extending over 60 miles across the world-renown beauty of Costa Rica. THE RETREAT is more than a luxury wellness destination; it truly is 'Heaven on Earth'; a place where visitors can let go of the stresses of everyday life and learn how to create the inner feeling of balance within that you have always dreamed of having in your life.
The mountains north of Costa Rica’s capital city San Jose are covered in small coffee farms. These farms are missing an important, sustainable feature: trees.
Not only does coffee grow best under shade trees, this simple practice helps preserve biodiversity. The Rainforest Alliance works in Costa Rica and many other countries to help farmers adopt green practices like this and today we’re visiting one such farm: Doka Estate Coffee.
Unlike most of the farms around it, Doka is preserving its trees, phasing out the use of most pesticides, and incorporating many other sustainable practices. Quality coffee like this earns a better price in the market, and workers are spared the damaging health effects of pesticides. During the tour where we learn about the sorting and drying of coffee beans, we hear a variety of birds calling from nearby trees. Managed right, a coffee farm makes great habitat for wildlife.
Like many tropical countries, Costa Rica lost a significant portion of its forests to agriculture in the 20th century. The US was responsible for most of this damage: they provided massive “aid” loans to cattle farmers in Costa Rica starting in the 1960s in order to feed Americans’ growing appetite for meat.
It’s not easy to come back from losing 80 percent of your forests, but Costa Rica is making a valiant effort through its payment for ecosystem services (PES) program. Using revenue from a gas tax, the government is paying small landowners to help reforest the country, with special attention to water resources and areas of high poverty. Their goal is to have 60 percent of the country covered in forests, a significant feat for any country.
This ambition is paying off for Costa Rica’s tourism sector: it now surpasses agriculture as the country’s biggest industry. People all over the world are drawn to Costa Rica’s renowned national parks and plentiful ecolodges.
In the midst of this tourism boom, the Rainforest Alliance is giving hotels and lodges the tools they need to run sustainably too. They train hotel employees and tour operators, provide marketing support to certified businesses, and strengthen international ecotourism standards. Their work complements the policies the Costa Rican government has passed to ensure that large and small businesses alike respect the country’s people and environment.
Nestled inside a cloud forest is an ecolodge that’s earned the country’s top green ranking: Villa Blanca. The lodge employs on-site composting and gray water treatment. Neighboring farms provide food for the dining hall and employees volunteer in the community. Visitors to the lodge not only soak up the transcendent beauty of the cloud forest, but also learn about green practices they could adopt when they go home.
Not all hotels in Costa Rica are doing it right. Some major hotel chains that offer all-inclusive coastal vacations don’t require visitors to engage with or give back to the communities they’re among. It’s a troubling, unchecked trajectory according to the documentary film The Goose With the Golden Eggs.
But with the help of groups like the Rainforest Alliance, that could change. “If there’s a country that can pull off [sustainability], it’s Costa Rica,” says Sergio Musmanni, ?Senior Advisor of the Low Carbon Development Program at German Development Cooperation Agency in Costa Rica. Already, Costa Rica gets most of its energy from renewable sources and has banned hunting and mining. As the world moves toward a cleaner future, we would do well to look here for sustainable inspiration.
Details / Other Expenses
|Year of Last Renovation:
||Both Interior and Exterior Hallways
|Non Smoking Rooms:
|Rooms with 1 Bed:
|Rooms with 2 Beds:
||Windows Do Open
||30 sq. feet
||Holds 50 people
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|Dist. to Nearest Gym:
Offering an outdoor pool and a restaurant, The Retreat Costa Rica is located in Atenas. Free WiFi access is available. Each room here will provide you with a balcony and a seating area.
Policies / Expenses
The guest can cancel free of charge until 60 days before arrival. The guest will be charged the total price if they cancel in the 60 days before arrival.
The guest will be charged a prepayment of the total price in the 60 days before arriva
|Typical Group Deposit:
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(mandatory resort fees/taxes)
Amenities / Features
Sorry, pets are not allowed.
It is Free, Breakfast is served buffet style with a fresh flare of fruits, juices, fresh made granola, local goat yogurt, chia pudding, oats and garden breakfast salad with farm fresh pasture raised eggs du jour.
Some of our options for breakfast are…
Grain Free Crepes – made with coconut flour
Rawtella – our raw version of chocolate hazelnut spread
Farm fresh eggs, omelets, scrambles, or made to order
Fresh Local Fruit – from our gardens
Raw ‘Cinnamon Rolls’ made with Cashew and filled with local plum paste
Local goat’s milk Greek yogurt
Pineapple Kale Coconut Water Kefir Smoothie
Fresh Pressed Watermelon Juice – From our gardens
French Pressed Coffee with Coconut Milk
Internet / WiFI
Free WiFi access is available