- Finca Rosa Blanca Coffee Plantation & Inn (Heredia): If the cookie-cutter rooms of international resorts leave you cold, then perhaps the unique rooms of this unusual inn will be more your style. Square corners seem to have been prohibited here in favor of turrets and curving walls of glass, arched windows, and a semicircular built-in couch. It's set into the lush hillsides just 20 minutes from San José.
- Hidden Canopy Tree Houses (Monteverde): The individual cabins here are set on high stilts and nestled into the surrounding cloud forest canopy. All abound in brightly, varnished local hardwoods. A refined, yet convivial, vibe presides over afternoon tea or cocktails, when guests enjoy the main lodge's sunset view.
- Cabinas Los Cocos (Playa Zancudo): If you've ever dreamed about chucking it all and setting up shop in a simple house right on the beach, give it a trial run here first.
- Casa Verde Lodge (Puerto Viejo): This is my favorite budget lodging along the Caribbean coast. The rooms are clean and airy and have comfortable beds with mosquito nets. The owners are friendly and always doing some work in the gardens or around the grounds.
- Tree House Lodge (Punta Uva): The collection of private houses at this small beachfront property are the most creative and luxurious accommodations to be found on the Caribbean coast. I like the namesake Tree House, although the Beach House Suite is quite spectacular as well.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.