Tree house: This Four Seasons Resort in Costa Rica is the ultimate eco-luxe destination

Summoning the energy to conquer a steep mountain hike before my morning coffee wasn’t exactly how I pictured kicking off my vacation, but the panoramic views from the enchanting shala at the summit quickly erase any memory of the climb. 

Practicing yoga in the al fresco structure (which takes its name from the Sanskrit word for “home”) — amidst the treetops swaying in the Pacific breeze — feels transformative.

The sweeping organic design of the bamboo shala exudes both luxury and modernity, like stepping into a life-sized Kenta Hirai sculpture.

A treetop shala wellness pavilion is the crowning jewel of the Four Season’s extensive makeover. Courtesy of resort

Virador is perched on a secluded cove beach with stunning seaside vistas. Courtesy of resort

It’s part of an impressive new renovation of the Four Seasons Resort Peninsula Papagayo, which is nestled on a lush peninsula on the northwestern coast of Costa Rica.

The multimillion-dollar refresh includes the wellness shala along with the debut of the Virador Beach Club, offering a seaside restaurant and lounge, an adults-only infinity pool and private cabanas. 

With world-class service combined with Costa Rica’s pura vida ethos, the resort has long been a haven for adventure seekers, wellness enthusiasts and cultural globe-trotters.

Its 181 guest rooms (including private residences and suites) are inspired by the surrounding ocean, forest, sun and beach.

The hotel’s Arnold
Palmer Signature golf course also received an update, with a focus on sustainability. Courtesy of resort

Guests at the Four Seasons Resort Peninsula Pagagayo — which hugs the Pacific — can
partake in a plethora of sea- and land-based adventures.

From the moment I arrive, I feel a profound connection to those serene elements.

In the expansive open-air lobby, I sip a refreshing passion-fruit infusion from a tiny coconut.

Stepping inside my ocean-view suite, I am welcomed by authentic touches.

A miniature tabletop carreta (a nod to the traditional Costa Rican ox cart), holds local sweets, while a hand-woven tote bag celebrates indigenous artistry.  

Amidst the resort’s various activities — including classes in yoga and breathwork, monkey scouting, bird-watching, paddleboarding, snorkeling and kayaking — I find myself spoiled for choice, and rejuvenated through nature. 

Bahia Grill serves culinary creations in tableware crafted by local artisans. Courtesy of resort

SurfX, an on-site surfing school, offers tailor-made lessons from pro surfers.

As a novice, I confess that spotting sea turtles during a private boat ride to a secluded beach turns out to be more enjoyable than the surfing itself.

Still, the sheer satisfaction of standing up on the board after just one lesson is undeniable.

I’m rewarded for my efforts with a truly decadent spa visit.

A session with an astrology expert sets the stage, followed by dips in therapeutic hot and cold plunge pools.

After a short intentional ceremony involving flowers and sage, I choose a massage inspired by both ancient and contemporary Costa Rican traditions.

A restorative facial, tailored with organic local ingredients, concludes with a heated jade gua sha. 

Decor in the 181 luxurious
guest rooms was inspired by the resort’s natural surroundings. Courtesy of resort

Then it’s time to indulge in some culinary delights at the new Virador Beach Club, which boasts a relaxed-yet-refined bohemian vibe.

Tucked away on a secluded cove beach, Virador’s meals combine diverse Eastern Mediterranean flavors and local ingredients. 

The resort also facilitates an array of off-site excursions, including a chance to watch local Chorotega artisans crafting the traditional clay tableware showcased at Virador.

For more adventure, nature tours reveal jungles, active volcanoes and other ecological wonders. 

From the mountaintop yoga shala to the invigorating waters of the Pacific, I find myself transformed — both physically and spiritually.

Turns out I may just be an early riser after all.

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