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Costa Rica

Studio Saxe designs tropical terraces for Mint Santa Theresa

1024 683 Katy Phillips

Inspired by Greek architecture, minimalism and Scandinavian design.

Costa Rican architects Studio Saxe have taken their established ‘tropical’ style and applied it to the Mint Santa Theresa hotel, which steps down a steep coastal hillside and is made up of a series of terraces that can be completely opened up to the elements.

A large central space has been designed to encourage social interactions between guests and everything is surrounded by the verdant landscape, which invades the hotel in all directions.

Inspired by Greek architecture, minimalism and Scandinavian design, the hotel’s Swedish owners commissioned Studio Saxe for the project based on their previous tropical builds and renovations.

Hotel residents occupy individual pavilion-like structures where they can retreat into a private zone and yet still interact with the nature around them. The guest rooms can be opened up completely to a personal terrace with an ocean view to the front and a garden with tropical plants in the rear. The bathrooms also have an open layout, giving the guests the opportunity to shower while listening to the sound of the crashing waves.

Each room is a afforded its own rooftop terrace, complete with plants, a sail for shade and furnished with rattan furniture made in Sarchí, a Costa Rican town famous for its inhabitants’ craftsmanship.

Studio Saxe used locally-sourced materials throughout the project, such as in ceilings that are made of “caña brava” (a type of grass) installed in an intricate fishbone pattern. Local craftsmen have also created custom furniture made of local wood and using traditional techniques.

The heart of Mint Santa Teresa is the communal lounge area with its an infinity pool and sunset bar. It is open on all sides save for a single wall of plants by the entrance, providing the guests with some privacy while maintaining the natural setting. The lounge serves as a meeting spot for guests, owners and locals of the area.

Benjamin Garcia Saxe said: “Hotels traditionally became vast objects in the landscape that bear no relation to their surroundings and are devoid of genuine human interaction. At Mint, we endeavored to create a contextual design that adapts to its landscape and offers a new type of experience for a breed of traveler seeking authenticity. We worked hard on creating spaces that combine an appreciation of natural beauty with a rich array of possibilities for social and cultural interaction. The result is a completely unique way of thinking about hospitality and wellness.”

$35m 're-imagination' for Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica

$35m ‘re-imagination’ for Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica

1024 823 Daniel Fountain

Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo, the only Forbes Five-Star luxury resort in Central and South America, has announced a $35 million (£27 million) extensive re-imagination beginning in August 2017 that will bring a striking new interpretation of modern eco-luxury to Costa Rica’s north Pacific coast in December 2017.

Design Details
The renovation of the hotel will be guided by a locally-inspired yet globally-considered modern design narrative from Meyer Davis Studio. The renowned New York City-based design boutique will bring a handcrafted approach to effortlessly integrating the Resort’s signature indoor-outdoor spaces with the peninsula’s vibrant tropical landscape so that nature takes centre stage. Meyer Davis’ design concept of effortless, sun-dappled luxury and modern elegance will play with space, form, texture and light to develop a visual experience that celebrates the rare beauty and alluring mystique of Peninsula Papagayo and the rustic coastal Central American lifestyle. The new design vision will weave together a soothing, natural colour palette, rich elements from nature, indigenous art and local wood to create an immediate and lasting impression while revealing an ongoing visual dialogue of discovery.

$35m 're-imagination' for Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica
Enhanced Rooms and Suites

The Resort’s 181 guest rooms, suites and villas will also feature a modern yet locally-celebrated design aesthetic that recalls the intimate luxury, warmth and comforts of a beautiful home space. Each room’s foundation of new furnishings, natural colours, rich textures and woods, and local elements including artisan pieces and artwork will create a seamless visual connection to the wondrous flora and fauna and expansive ocean views on display beyond each room’s private balcony or patio. The Resort’s 15 one-bedroom Canopy Suites built into the hillside will additionally feature new plunge pools.

www.fourseasons.com/costarica

Studio Saxe - Hotel Nalu-Nosara

Sneak Peek: Eco-focussed, sustainable Hotel Nalu-Nosara

999 569 Daniel Fountain

A young, up-and-coming architecture firm – Studio Saxe – has completed a boutique hotel and yoga studio set into the tropical landscape of Nosara, Costa Rica.

The project is another in a long line of sustainable buildings from a practice that blends contemporary design with local craftsmanship, embracing the natural environment that surrounds and frames the architecture.

Nosara has become a destination for visitors from around the world for health, wellness and surfing and so the owners of Hotel Nalu-Nosara, Nomel and Mariya Libid, wanted a design that reflected the attitude of their guests. The yoga studio, which has also become incredibly popular as a multipurpose gym space, is enveloped by lush vegetation on all sides and therefore becomes a jungle retreat for exercise and relaxation.

Guests at the hotel are provided with individual pavilion ‘homes’ rather than rooms, located just a few minutes’ walk from the ocean. By breaking up the mass of the
traditionally monolithic hotel, the architects were able scatter living spaces amongst the trees and create a sense of privacy while surrounded by the natural world. Each
pavilion has been carefully positioned following meticulous research into wind and sun patterns, while ensuring they are all provided with an individual view out to the
landscape.

Overlapping timber roofs project out over each pavilion providing shade from the intense equatorial sun. These roofs are made of recycled teak planks, creating uneven patterns that further emphasise this fusion of local craftsmanship and modern design. Rooms are connected via corridors that filter dappled sunlight down from the pergola roofs above and frame more views out the lush surroundings.

Architect Benjamin Garcia Saxe said: “Our project at Nalu represents the power of simple, low-key, modern tropical architecture. It has quickly become a town favourite,
which shows that there is a real desire to occupy spaces that bring people closer to nature, while addressing the needs of contemporary life.”

studiosaxe.com

Hard Rock Papagayo Costa Rica

Hard Rock Hotel Papagayo to open 2019 in Costa Rica

772 464 Daniel Fountain

Hard Rock International has made waves after announcing plans to bring the Hard Rock Hotels experience to Costa Rica with the all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel Papagayo, Costa Rica by early 2019.

The 294-room modern retreat will be centrally located just 30 minutes from Liberia International Airport, providing travelers with easy access to Papagayo’s Gulf and Peninsula. Recognised as one of the country’s most popular resort destinations, guests of this Hard Rock Hotel will be treated to secluded landscapes, natural wonders, eco-adventure excursions and an up close look at Costa Rica’s impressive biodiversity.

In true Hard Rock style, the resort will boast brand exclusive offerings, such as a full-service Rock Spa featuring relaxing and recharging treatments and The Sound of Your Stay music amenity program offering free in-room Fender guitar checkouts.

New luxe villa hotel to open in Las Catalinas Costa Rica February 2017

850 566 Daniel Fountain

Modern travellers seeking an authentic Costa Rican experience filled with immersive culture, adventure and romance will love the new Casa Chameleon Las Catalinas hotel opening February 2017.

The resort is the first hotel for the up and coming coastal town of Las Catalinas on the Guanacaste coastline and the second Costa Rica property for NP International, the name behind TripAdvisor favorite, Casa Chameleon Hotel Mal Pais. The new hotel will continue the privacy, romance and service that the Casa Chameleon brand is known for.

“It was important to us that we find the right location for the second in our Casa Chameleon concept where romance environment and culture combine” says Brent Reynolds, President & Managing Partner NP International.

Guests will bed down in one of 21 private villas with the most spectacular ocean views on the Guanacaste coast and personal salt water infinity plunge pools. The resort has been designed with romantic intention to ensure every villa gets an unobstructed front row seat of the ocean.

Las Catalinas Costa Rica

Casa Chameleon Las Catalinas will also boast a magnificent 365 degree zero edge swimming pool perched on the top of the cliff with poolside bar lounge for soaking up the most dramatic sunsets all year long overlooking the Catalinas islands, and an open-air kitchen restaurant utilizing local and organic produce from a sustainable supply chain. Fresh fish is provided by local artisan fishermen in keeping with the eco philosophy of the resort.

Those seeking adventure can take full advantage of the local geography with kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, mountain biking and hiking or take a guided canopy tour with local experts. Add an open-air yoga pavilion with private yoga instructor, in villa spa therapy treatments and those soothing plunge pools and relaxation is guaranteed. Guests at Casa Chameleon come first, by name not room number, and are encouraged to become one with the local people, pastimes and places.

The spectacular local flora and fauna for which the region is known, is treated with respect by the hotel with non-toxic cleaning products, a recycle program, energy efficient lighting, water conservation practices, adjustable room temperature, eco-friendly bath products, a monthly beach cleanup for staff and guests and the opportunity for guests to give back to the local school.