Perez Zeledon, Costa Rica
Auberge Resorts Collection
What it is
A de facto horse ranch on a cinematic hill with what’s reportedly Central America’s largest spa.
What it isn't
Rustic. Yes, you’ll find dozens of trusty steeds awaiting a ride. But rooms—all suites or casitas—are nothing short of opulent, with plush finishings and wrap-around terraces ideal for soaking in the view in the morning dew.
What we think
We’ll never own our own Costa Rican horse ranch, and we’re ok with that. We think. Thankfully, Hacienda AltaGracia treats guests like they own the place—and what a place it is. The resort’s 20-acre ecologically-managed farm provides much of the produce for the six on-site restaurants; the spa feels more like a lush garden (one where you can steep in a hydrotherapy tub); and experiences on offer include vinyasa flow yoga classes at dawn, birding for toucans, and making cheese on a nearby farm). Basically: it’s the type of retreat that takes the hassle out of planning. Just show up, prepare to be wowed (and BYO camera).
You're here because
You have a thing for equestrian centers, but can’t live without a deep tissue massage after a day in the saddle. Problem solved.
Watching the sun set over the surrounding foothills is exactly the sort of unplugged merriment you were hoping for on this getaway. Sat by the floor to ceiling window in Ambar, the Costa Rican restaurant that could double as a James Bond film set, you can’t help but want to drop your jaw when the sky turns bubble gum pink. Then something happens that actually does it: your waiter sets a dish of pan-seared rainbow trout with ginger foam before you. Divine!
Restaurants & Bars
Ambar - the perfect spot to enjoy the first and last meals of the day. Beautiful panoramic views of General Valley
El Bistro - Light lunches and coffee bar
La Cantina - specialty cocktails and premium spirits. Billiard and other game tables available
High in the hills of the Cordillera de Talamanca mountains, you’re a 40 minute ride from San Isidro de El General airport, or just over three from San Jose. Plenty of guests also land their private planes and charters on the resort’s airstrip.