W Hotels Worldwide today announced the opening of W Costa Rica – Reserva Conchal, the first W hotel in the country. In addition to being the second W hotel to open in Central America this year (following W Panama), W Costa Rica is also the newest W Escape, the brand’s unique spin on the traditional resort experience – zip line and all.
W Costa Rica is located within a 2,300-acre nature reserve just minutes from Tamarindo, an internationally-renowned surf spot that has earned a reputation among amateur and professional wave enthusiasts. Surfing not your style? Nearby Playa Flamingo offers horseback riding, ATV and catamaran rides as well as fishing, snorkeling and jungle exploration by foot. In the dry season (December through April), Costa Rica is a must for nature-lovers who can witness majestic humpback whale migration and magical turtle nesting along the nearby beaches. Known as one of the happiest countries in the world, Costa Rica lives by the “pura vida” lifestyle, a carefree, optimistic approach to everyday pleasures.
“The land of ‘pura vida’ is where the playful spirit of the W brand was born to run free,” said Anthony Ingham, Global Brand Leader, W Hotels Worldwide. “The people, the culture and the beauty of this country all meet to create a paradise unlike any other, and W Costa Rica will celebrate it all. The hotel is our latest W Escape, W’s platform for hotels that redefine the resort experience for the modern traveler looking for a holiday rooted in unexpected experiences and local sizzle.”
W Costa Rica brings unexpected style to the serene, tropical paradise of Reserva Conchal. Designed by Mister Important Design alongside the renowned in-house design team at W Hotels and Ronald Zurcher Architects, W Costa Rica embraces its surroundings with interpretations of the natural beauty of nearby beaches and jungle. Elements of this breathtaking landscape as well as the deep historical roots of the region are embedded in every aspect of W Costa Rica as the hotel combines land and sea with culture and treasured history.
Upon arrival, guests are ushered through an avenue of 2,000 Bursera Simaruba trees (or “Indios Desnudos”), a living fence traditionally grown by local farmers to pen in livestock. The brand’s signature “W” sign is a negative space among a bright red wall that wraps around the Wheels area (valet). The circular arrival area and signature W sign is inspired by the unmistakable red of bull fighting that can still be found during one of the country’s emblematic cultural activities held at “Plaza de Toros.” Although true to the Pura Vida spirit, bulls in the Costa Rican bullfighting tradition are not killed.
As guests approach the Living Room (the brand’s signature spin on the traditional hotel lobby), floor-to-ceiling stone and wooden panels line the walls of the artistically lit hallway, mimicking one of Costa Rica’s favorite instruments, the marimba. The indoor-outdoor Living Room immerses guests in the Guanacaste Forest with wooden structures towering above the outdoor areas, mirroring the shape of the province’s famous namesake trees.
Guests will be able to shop local without leaving the hotel at W Hotels The Store, which will feature a rotating curated collection of artisan and regionally inspired items. At the far end of the Living Room, a giant curvaceous wooden pillar is engraved to reflect the textures and patterns of the Costa Rican pineapple, the global symbol of hospitality and one of Costa Rica’s most important economic drivers. The structure frames the elevator leading to the hotel’s meeting spaces and restaurant, Latitud 10° Norte.
The WET Deck (the W pool) honors the wheels of Costa Rica’s colorful “Carreta Tipica,” oxcarts that can be found across the country, with a mosaic interpretation of the mandala-like designs inlaid in the hot tub within the hotel’s sparkling pool and throughout the interiors of the curvaceous sunken Wet Bar.
Zona Azul Beach Club is the brand’s first on-site beach club located on one of the country’s rare white sand beaches, Playa Conchal. W Costa Rica is giving guests a playfully social thrill – a soon-to-come zip line right from the hilltop Wet Deck to the surf side beach club. Talk about instant gratification. Guests can take the 10-minute stroll down to the shore, or opt in for a one-way ticket down to Zona Azul Beach Club.
Inspired by nearby Nicoya, one of only five places in the world where quality of life and happiness lead to an extraordinary number of centenarians, Zona Azul Beach Club is named for the world-famous “blue zone” that holds the key to longevity. The hotel’s beach club features a stunning infinity pool for guests to soak in the sun and relax in high-design luxury. This vibrant beach club restaurant offers a menu that melds international tastes from each of the five blue zones located in Italy, Japan, Greece, California (U.S.) and of course, Costa Rica.
The party doesn’t stop with decadent dining at Zona Azul Beach Club. Costa Rica’s newest oceanside haunt will feature high-energy entertainment including DJs, late-night cocktails and direct access to Playa Conchal. Zona Azul Beach Club will welcome both W guests and local party-goers, offering a total destination experience year-round.