• FOOD

Boutique family surf hotel in Costa Rica

Location: Playa Grande, Tamarindo
About an hour from Liberia International Airport (LIR), or 4 hours from San Jose (SJO).
Family friendly:
 All ages
Av. temp 30C.
Best time to go:
Nov–April (May–Oct is rainy season).
Surf level:
Beginner to advanced.
Other activities:
Horse-riding, watersports, wildlife
Time zone:
GMT -6

  • A small and friendly hotel with 21 rooms.
  • Top of range is the bungalow, sleeping up to 5 in two bedrooms with Queen-size beds, a small patio and spa shower.
  • Two large Family Suites sleeping 4, are decked out a living area, kitchenette and a private patio overlooking the pool area.
  • Deluxe rooms sleep 4, with two queen-size beds, a sofa and a small fridge.
  • The standard rooms with a Queen-size bed, one single bed and a patio are perfect for budget-conscious families with just one child.
  • All rooms have a coffee maker and air-con.
  • 2 swimming pools
  • Yoga shala (drop in $15 per class/ 3 classes $40 /5 classes for $60)
  • Tree-top restaurant
  • Free wifi
  • Beach towels
  • 75m walk to Playa Grande
  • Babysitting service ($10 per hour)
  • Surfing lessons are run by the experts at Frijoles Locos (frijoleslocos.com) surf school.
  • They provide excellent instruction for children as young as 4.
  • Lessons will be conducted at the breaks best suited to your ability.
  • Group lessons from $40pp/ semi-private lessons from $55pp/ private lessons $120
  • Playa Grande has four different surf breaks along the 3-mile stretch of beach.
  • The main break is best for intermediates and advanced surfers, while beginners can head further south along the beach.
  • Tamarindo, just across the estuary (hop over on a little panga boat) is home to a great beginner break but it gets super crowded.
  • Babysitting is available if you want to sneak out for a solo session.
  • The stunning Playa Grande offers 3-miles of palm-fringed sands just 75-metres from RipJack Inn.
  • Perfect for families, it’s un-crowded – and the waves get mellower the further south you venture.
  • Playa Grande is also the territory of the endangered Leatherback Turtle.
  • It’s a short hop by panga boat over the estuary to the surf hub of Tamarindo.
  • Dine in the open-air treetop restaurant.
  • Family-friendly dishes including traditional Tico cuisine using ingredients from the land and sea.
  • Special kids’ menu for under 12’s.
  • Serves all day 8am–9pm.
  • Take a 4WD ATV tour along the Gold Coast.
  • Swing through the tree tops on a canopy tour.
  • Hop aboard a sunset sailing trip.
  • Encounter wildlife on a horse riding adventure.
  • Try all sorts of watersports including snorkelling, paddleboarding and fishing.
  • Spot crocodiles, visit National Parks and dip in hot springs.
  • Rejuvenate with a deep-tissue massage, sports massage or relaxation massage.
  • Swing in one of the many hammocks around the pool.
  • Stretch out in a yoga class.
  • Go snorkelling on the famous Playa Conchal (about 30 minutes’ drive north).
  • It’s a short hop by panga boat to Tamarindo – arguably Costa Rica’s most popular surf town, with great waves and an array of cafés, bars and seafood restaurants.
  • About 45 minutes’ south is Playa Avellana, dubbed one of the most stunning beaches in Costa Rica.