- Top beachside surfing destination
- Laid back atmosphere
- Surf school, yoga
- Mountain biking centre
The Gilded Iguana is a chic, contemporary hotel located just a stone’s throw from Costa Rica’s Playa Guiones, a stunning seven-kilometre stretch of beach in the north west of the country. Due to the consistent surf break here, the hotel is known first and foremost as a top surfers’ retreat, but it will also appeal to anyone into mountain biking or yoga retreats. Originally opened back in 1988, the hotel has generated significant growth in Nosara but, despite its increasing popularity, the town still maintains a certain undeveloped charm and the Gilded Iguana provides the perfect spot to ‘escape the rat race’ and unwind.
All of the hotel’s rooms are modern, spacious and air conditioned with high ceilings that let in plenty of natural light. Each room has its own outdoor living space complete with seating area and shower, along with an indoor bathroom, tea and coffee making facilities, a hairdryer and a minibar. All guests are provided with a key to their own surf board locker. There are four categories of room ranging from the more economic Surf Rooms, to the impressive Surfer Suite, which is the hotel’s largest and most expensive option – all come with complimentary Wi-Fi. The hotel’s restaurant and bar are popular with visitors and locals alike; the food is a delicious fusion of Mediterranean and Costa Rican cuisine, and there are live music evenings. There’s also a lovely spa offering a good range of treatments.
Without a doubt one of the key features of the hotel is its surf school which is open to everyone regardless of experience or skill level. Lessons are available for advanced surfers as well as complete beginners, and the retail surf shop sells surfboards and other essentials. Handily enough, the beach is just a short 200 metre walk from the hotel. While it’s true that surfing naturally dominates the property, there are plenty of other activities on offer. For example, the hotel has its own mountain bike centre with bike rentals and a number of two-hour guided excursions to choose from, along with birdwatching, snorkelling, paddle boarding and boat excursions.
The hotel is child-friendly and there are plenty of flexible accommodation options – some of the suites have bunkbeds and some house more than one double bed. Youngsters will love the large swimming pool and the beach and there’s plenty for all age groups to do in the area.
- Upmarket hotel with chilled-out feel
- Direct beach access, yoga, wellbeing spa
- Surfing for all experience levels
- Snorkelling, kayaking, biking
Two week self-drive Costa Rica family holiday covering all the highlights including Tortugeuro, Arenal, Monteverde Rain Forest, Nosara Beach and Manuel Antonio National Park.
Tailor-made Classic 15 days
From €2,575 per person
2 week adventure including surfing in Nosara, rafting Pacuare River and tubing and canyoning at Rio Perdido. Classic rainforest and beachside accommodation.
Tailor-made Luxury 2 weeks
From €2,783 per person
The ultimate Costa Rica holiday for surfers and their families. Explore Arenal Volcano, surf in hip Nosara and surf and see the wildlife in the stunning Osa Peninsula.
Tailor-made Luxury 2 weeks
From €5,477 per person
Dear Lisa. On behalf of the three generations of the Rowland family. Thank you, so much, for organising our wonderful holiday to Botswana and the Victoria Falls. The trip of a lifetime. The week mobile camping in the bush, with our guide Nandos and his crew was a fantastic adventure. How they manage to cook such wonderful food on an open fire is amazing. The sites were constantly visited by monkeys and once by elephants. We were even lucky enough to see two packs of wild dogs, once with a kill. Waterberry Lodge on the Zambezi River is a wonderfully tranquil place. Ideal to relax after the adventures of our safari and visiting Victoria Falls. Very many thanks once again
Godfrey R reviewing Private Mobile Family Safari in Botswana on 25 September 2023
We had a great time - even with the flight between Governors and the coast being two flights and a car! We also experienced a power cut At Nairobi airport on the way home so 2+ hours late taking off. Governors. Wonderful people and dealt with the flight delay very well - taking us back and letting us know that we could stay there if the flight was delayed overnight. The game drives were excellent and our guide (Erick) obviously very experienced and managed to find all the key animals - no rhino in that part of the Masai Mara but everything else in abundance - never seen so many herbivores (many many elephants as well as all the others) as well as two prides of lions. Could not have asked for more. The ‘tent’ was excellent and comfortable and well serviced. The only ‘complaint’ would be that the food - especially dinner - could be improved (I think we got a bit bored of soup as a starter for every meal bar one) and the main courses were not at the same level as Kinondo Kwetu and while all were explained there was no choice offered. The breakfasts were just what was needed after an early game drive. Kinondo Kwetu. What a great location and the welcome when we arrived at just gone 11.00pm was better than you could have ever thought possible - they we’re disappointed that we did not at that time want the full dinner experience! The rooms we’re comfortable. The food was excellent but again no choice was offered - other than for allergy reasons (which we do not have). May be some choice would be nice. Having said that the food we did have was excellent as were the wines (albeit a short list!) and other drinks. There were (as you know) lots of facilities/sports options - but we spent our time relaxing which was exactly what we needed and there were lots of places to do that. Overall. We would go back to both places - perhaps a few more nights at Kinondo Kwetu next time but 3 nights at Governors was perfect for us. Thank you for organising and recommending both places. That you and your colleague for trying to find out about the plane (flat tyre) but communication by the flight company left a lot to be desired (Governors were furious that they were not told and had taken us to the airstrip). Phil
Philip R reviewing Masai Mara Safari & Kenya Beach on 01 September 2023
It was certainly a holiday of a lifetime for us and we loved every minute!! The standard and location of each accommodation was excellent, as was the variety of each different accommodation type. Our schedule was perfect and we managed to achieve everything on our to-do task list. Your documents were also really helpful, as were the driving directions. We all thank you for making this such a wonderful holiday. Happy to leave a review publicly if you point me the right way. Best Steve
Stephen H reviewing Classic Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari on 01 September 2023