Nayara Gardens is a place for those that enjoy the relaxed, understated ethos that embodies Costa Rica’s “Pura Vida” go-with-the-flow way of life.
Our story is about stunning natural beauty, intimate spaces, and connecting with nature. Extraordinary service is given with warmth and heartfelt hospitality. Taking pride in our natural and cultural richness and being environmentally and socially responsible in everything we do.
Our kitchens are driven by the mission to offer sustainable and healthy food that uses local and seasonally available products while supporting local farmers and producers. The aim is to get to “zero kilometers” of distance between our produce and our kitchen.
Our freestanding “casita” is our entry-level deluxe room. Each casita captures the character of Costa Rica, showcasing the rainforest just outside your door.
With sweeping views of the volcano or the jungle canopy, the casita offers privacy and plush furnishings, with a quiet garden featuring an outdoor shower. Rooms have either a king bed or two double beds.
The Rainforest Villa’s unique octagonal design makes it comfortably spacious and allows natural light to filter in from every angle. It features an oversized Jacuzzi on the wrap-around balcony that overlooks either the imposing Arenal Volcano or the lush rainforest, and a private garden with outdoor rain showers for two.
WALK OUR GARDENS
Embrace your inner explorer as you walk through tropical gardens adorned with heliconia and bougainvillea. Discover hidden ponds full of colorful koi fish and lilypads.
Enjoy our Termas, seven mineral hot-springs pools secluded in the rainforest. When the sun goes down, come to the swim-up bar for a refreshing tropical mojito and fresh guacamole.
AN UNEXPECTED CULINARY JOURNEY
As a Relais & Chateaux property, rich taste and authentic flavors are at the heart of everything we do. Our restaurants are distinct in look and feel—from an intimate tapas bar to a lively outdoor terrace, to a colorful “pulperia” that serves a fusion of Asian and Peruvian dishes.
Our chefs apply fine dining techniques to local ingredients and seasonal produce to delight you with a menu of sophisticated and delicious flavors.
AL FRESCO DINING
Our open-air family restaurant serves a-la-carte local and international food. With unparalleled views of the volcano from your table, you’ll enjoy delicious gourmet food and new spins on classic Costa Rican favorites.
We use only local produce and fresh ingredients, source our own fish and meat and carry hundreds of bottles of wines from around the world. Don’t miss sitting at the “Bar Azul” and having the bartender prepare you his or her own tropical creation. Live local musicians every night add to the lively ambiance.
LATIN AMERICAN ASIAN FUSION
Our menu incorporates Asian and Latin flavors, with sushi rolls, wok dishes, and fresh seafood specials. The décor resembles a “Pulperia,” a traditional Costa Rican bar. The chairs and tables are hand-painted by members of the indigenous Maleku tribe and depict local flora and fauna.
Make sure to try the Nayara Roll, made of sweet plantains and cooked chicken, and the Chef’s signature dish of steamed fish cooked in plantain leaves.
AN INTIMATE BAR
Taste the best of Latin American and European vintages using our unique wine dispensing system, imported from Italy. Nostalgia’s inviting décor, featuring leather and wood, creates a warm and intimate ambiance.
Enjoy tapas and drinks while sitting at the bar or the balcony. Nostalgia also offers wine and food pairing: a spectacular array of five-courses perfectly matched with five different glasses of wine, and “wine flights,” a comparison of wines to enjoy the art of wine tasting.
Chef ASIA LUNA
Originally from Nicaragua, Fatima came to Costa Rica as a young girl and studied in a technical school in La Fortuna. She always helped her sister in the kitchen and one day she ran into a chef that was doing training in Asian food.
Fatima fell in love with the flavors and smells of Asia; at Nayara, she trained with Peruvian and Japanese chefs to develop Asia Luna’s fusion menu. Fatima’s original creations use only fresh, seasonal produce and local flavorings.
She adds a playful touch by using small plates and mixing colors and shapes. “It’s all about the guests,” Fatima says, “They are the source of my inspiration and their comments drive me to excel and to continue growing.”
Our award-winning spa is a place of beauty and relaxation where you can disconnect from the world and connect with the nature around you
OPEN-AIR TREATMENT PAVILIONS
Each treatment pavilion overlooks the ravine and includes a Jacuzzi and outdoor shower. In addition to classic massages and facials, treatments include scrubs and wraps with organic coffee, volcanic mud, and chocolate clay.
Try one of our experience packages, where we put together signature rituals to provide ultimate relaxation and renewal.
YOGA BEGINS WITH LISTENING TO THE SOUNDS AROUND YOU
“I’ve done lots of yoga all over the world but the experience in Nayara tops everything I’ve felt before. The combination of the sounds of the birds and the stillness of the forest gave me a feeling of Samadhi, a high sense of freedom and happiness.” Irena S. Brownsville, NY
The Arenal area is a bird watcher’s paradise. Few places in the world can boast of having so many species of birds and Costa Rica has identified over 850! Popular birds to spot in Nayara’s bird-watching tour at dawn include toucans, hummingbirds, trogons, and hawks. And if you are lucky you’ll get a glimpse of the shy quetzal.
Our grounds are rich in tropical plants, from palms and cycads to flowering trees and vines. A stroll around our tropical gardens is a celebration of the senses: Don’t miss our many colorful heliconias and bougainvilleas, the hardy banana flower or the many species of philodendrons.
A morning “zip-line” among the tree canopies or water rafting in the Sarapiqui River can be tiring. Come back and rest your aching muscles in our pool, leisurely sip a pina colada in Kali-Kali, our swim-up bar, or splash in our mineral private hot springs pools secluded in the rainforest
Discover many of the hundreds of frogs that call Nayara home, from the diminutive red-eye to the poisonous blue jean legs. Every night there is an organized frog-tour of the resort ponds with one of our in-house naturalists.
NAYARA CURATED ACTIVITIES
We offer personalized, private tours with our own-site naturalists and expertly trained guides. Experience everything Costa Rica has to offer just the way you want it. We’ll take care of all the details so you can focus on enjoying your vacation.
Calling all thrill-seekers and adrenaline junkies! Arenal is referred to as the adventure capital of Costa Rica for good reason.
Experience zip lining across the top of the rainforest canopy, or rappelling down the side of Arenal’s waterfalls. Whether white-water rafting on the Sarapiqui River or hiking the Arenal Volcano, we promise you will have the adventure of a lifetime.
WALKING AND OBSERVATION
Traverse hanging bridges and trek over dry lava fields to examine pristine rainforests. Discover waterfalls and crystal blue rivers, and soak in hot springs. Stand in the shadows of huge trees, the centuries-old guardians of the forest.
Costa Rica is home to over 900 bird species, and Arenal has plenty of tanagers, hummingbirds, toucans, and oropendolas. Multi-colored frogs and other amphibians, volcano craters, and exotic plants all make for a unique region to explore on foot.
Learn about coffee cultivation as you visit a plantation, and taste delicious hot chocolate freshly made with organic cacao. Discover the rainforest and the different species of plants and animals while you float along the river in the many hectares of the jungle of the Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge.
Visit The Proyecto Asis, where rescued animals are taken care of. Discover the arts and crafts of the Maleko indigenous population with an organized visit to a Maleko village.
Nayara grounds are bursting with wildlife. You can spot sloths and monkeys on our trails, or join a bird-watching walk at dawn. After dark, you can join a frog scouting tour where you can see diminutive red-eyed tree frogs and blue-jean frogs in our ponds.
Our resort is also a botanist and gardener’s paradise. Our trails are teeming with tropical plants and exotic flowers, from heliconias and orchids to cacao and plantain trees. Our Armadillo Trail showcases fruit trees on both sides of the winding path.
At Nayara, sustainable tourism is our driving motivation. We believe in building in harmony with nature, leaving space for wildlife and wilderness, while contributing to the growth of our local community.
We are proud of our numerous social and environmental initiatives. We are environmentally friendly and socially responsible without compromising the design or the local culture.
We think local: we want our community to thrive. The majority of our team comes from the neighboring town of La Fortuna de San Carlos. We offer them free transportation, sustainable tourism education, and health services.
Some of our additional local initiatives include free early education for our employees’ children, volunteer time, and financial support to Hogarcito de Ninos, a local orphanage, and support for local artists.
Costa Rica is Green
Costa Rica is one of the greenest countries in the world, both literally and ecologically. A quarter of the country’s land is protected from development, the largest percentage of protected land in the world (the average is 8%).
From the beginning, Nayara has pledged to keep a light footprint on its pristine property. We built two pedestrian bridges hanging over our forest canopy to protect the trees and wildlife below.
We were rewarded the Costa Rican government’s coveted Four Leaves Award for Sustainability for our efforts and for endorsing the four tenets of sustainability that ensure we remain one of Costa Rica’s premier eco-resorts.
Energy & Water Conservation
We built sustainable and renewable buildings. Land topography allows us to orientate our rooms smartly to maximize the heating effects of sunlight and ventilation, minimizing the need for air conditioning and heating.
We use energy-conserving light bulbs and lighting systems, and water-conserving faucets and towels.
Sloths –those adorable and lethargic animals living in treetops- spend much of their lives in the canopies of the Guarumo trees, snoozing and hiding from predators. Our mission is to preserve and grow our tropical rainforest, providing a safe habitat that can support a healthy sloth population.
By planting thousands of trees, we show our commitment to the preservation of the sloths’ natural habitat. As we continue our reforestation effort, our tropical rainforests are welcoming more sloths, monkeys, and birds than ever before.
Preserving the Rainforest
We have gone to great lengths to preserve and protect our piece of the rainforest—building around heritage trees, planting native species in our tropical gardens, and caring for the animals and birds who reside on our property.
We also help Arenal National Park’s reforestation effort and provide sanctuary for sloths and howler monkeys.
Conservation and Reforestation
Reforestation is the most important action we can take to protect the rainforest and the wildlife that lives within it. Planting new trees reduce the number of greenhouse gases in the air and helps rebuild endangered habitats, which is the leading threat to the survival of animal species.
The area where the resort is located had all of its trees cut down by a previous landowner to create a pasture.
We have slowly and painstakingly replanted native species in the forest and built tropical gardens throughout the resort, creating beautiful grounds that serve as a natural refuge for birds, monkeys, and sloths. We have an extensive collection of tropical plants including palms, cycads, flowering trees, and vines.
Conservation Initiatives: Plastic Free Resorts
We are working hard to become a single-use plastic free resort. We have replaced plastic water bottles with glass reusable bottles in the villas, eliminated plastic straws, and continue to recycle plastic and cartons.