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Exploring the Natural Wonders of Costa Rica: Dominical & Uvita

Updated: Dec 21, 2021

The beach towns of Dominical and Uvita are located in the southern Pacific region of the country and have become a popular destination for those in search of pristine nature, tranquility and largely deserted terrains. A smooth 3.5 hour drive from the San Jose airport, this 12 mile stretch of dramatic coastline and nearly virgin beaches is lined by lush, verdant mountainsides and intersected by an abundance of pristine rivers and waterfalls.

This jungle-filled mountainous area is a playground for wildlife and hiking enthusiasts alike and the nearly deserted beaches are the perfect escape for those looking to relax and unwind. An impressive first world highway adjoins these towns and, besides the highway, there are truly very few signs of human development activity from anywhere on the road or the beaches; only a local “tico” or an informed tourist would know that luxurious lodging gems - many with jaw-dropping views of the coastline below - are hidden within the dense jungle side.


Southeast Pacific Region

Driving time from San José: 3 hr 7 min, 127 miles (205 km)

Go hiking to the Nauyaca Waterfalls, a two-tiered waterfall with a 200 foot combined drop and a deep natural pool for swimming. Traverse the 4.3 miles of trails at Hacienda Barú, a hotel and wildlife refuge with an extraordinary diversity of habitats, flora and fauna, including over 330 species of birds identified on-sight. Rent a kayak to go on a mangrove river tour or a snorkeling-included ocean trip around the famous Whale’s Tail in Marino Ballena National Park, reaching some of the area’s most secluded beaches. If visiting within the months of August - November, sign up for a whale watching tour when hundreds of humpback whales migrate to the region’s warm waters every year to breed and rear their young. Visit Diamante Waterfall and Cave, a moderate to difficult day hike that will reward you with a twin waterfall at journey’s end and a secret cave as its backdrop (and for the more adventurous, you can stay overnight in the cave, complete with elevated platforms, a bathroom and a kitchen).

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Eco Luxury Villa, Achiote road, OSA, Costa Rica

Images by Jakub Skokan & Martin Tuma


Staying at Villa Atelier is in itself an experience to behold: prepare to enter an extravagant world of natural, polished simplicity that transcends the boundaries between the inside and the outside worlds.

Located halfway between the beach towns of Dominical and Uvita, directly above Playa Hermosa in the lush south Pacific region of Costa Rica, Villa Atelier can host up to 6 people in its 3 bedrooms (with a/c), fully equipped modern kitchen, outdoor and indoor living room areas, infinity pool and garden terrace.

Upon arrival at Villa Atelier, what appears to be an unassuming, rectangular warehouse structure crowned by a rooftop garden suddenly transforms into stunning elevated luxury as you slide open the massive camouflaged front door to enter what will be your uniquely lavish jungle sanctuary for the next few days. Floor-to-ceiling glass walls facing the oceanside and surrounding jungle can all be slid completely open to merge the villa seamlessly and organically with the natural world around it, aligning your body with nature’s rhythms from within a distinguished comfort of this rare, serene space, seemingly plucked from a dream.

Villa Atelier includes its equally impressionable and unique lodgings: the Art Villa and CoCo Pods. A 4x4 car is needed to reach these extraordinary properties.

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Luxury Private Residency

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Sitting dramatically atop a tropical forested mountainside, this secluded and romantic 19 acre ocean view estate is a contemporary architectural masterpiece located near the beach town of Uvita in the lush south Pacific region of Costa Rica.

Casa Gandhi is a 2 bedroom home with an open floor plan design throughout its entirety. It is situated in a secure and private gated community and its rental includes on-site caretakers that ensure your privacy and security. A 4x4 vehicle is required to reach this exclusive property via a 15-20 minute spectacular drive through the jungle from the beach town of Uvita.

Going back to its striking design, the great room (an amplified living room), dining area, stylish kitchen and master bedroom open fully and effortlessly out to the large pool and lounge/deck area. Floor-to-ceiling retractable glass doors on the entire ocean side of the house allow the soft cooling breeze to flow in. In the two unique indoor/outdoor bathrooms, you can turn your gaze up to look out into the open blue sky and lush jungle canopy and literally reach out to touch the flora.

If you have a group of more than 4 people, a separate guest house with likewise stunning ocean sunset views is tucked a few steps away on the same property and available as additional private space for groups and families. All bedrooms in both the main house and guest house have air conditioning to keep you cool and rested.

All in all, an abundance of illuminated, flowing, nature-filled space will uplift your peace-filled days at Casa Gandhi.

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Luxury Private Residency

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Ombak House is as close to having your own posh mansion by the sea experience as you can get.

This stunning 2 story, 5 bedroom, 7 bathroom estate is located in an exclusive gated community near the beach town of Dominical and is surrounded by jungle and 12 acres of private reserve.

Upon arriving to your ultra private and secure home with no neighbors in sight (besides a panoply of exotic tropical vegetation and wildlife), you will be enthralled by the majestic beauty of Ombak House’s contemporary design and open floor plan: the entire front half of the house spreads out magnificently onto a breathtaking panorama of the Pacific Ocean below.

Count on an expansive pool deck area, outdoor bbq and bar/dining areas, a Balinese-style lounge hut, a billiards table game room, a sophisticated and fully equipped large modern kitchen, lots of space and area for entertainment (or relaxation) purposes, and five very roomy air-conditioned bedrooms of which two are master suites featuring Instagram-worthy outdoor tubs.

This house is grandiose, impressive with its bright natural illumination and immaculateness, and a space that you can stay in for days on end without ever feeling cramped nor bored (only pampered).

By Adriana Garuolis & Markin Abras. Images courtesy of each featured property


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