If you are a nature lover who is also interested in a cultural experience, this is for you!
Casa Libelula is our studio apartment, hand-crafted with care and creativity, nestled against the forest above the creek.
We hope that you enjoy the tranquility of our tiny neighborhood just outside of town and revel in its rich natural and cultural diversity. Your closest neighbors will include mostly the furred and feathered type. Right from bed, you can be dazzled by the presence of frequent visitors at your window--our resident sloth, long-tailed manakin, squirrel cuckoo, blue-crowned motmot and more! If you forget your alarm clock, don't fret! Our resident rooster will give you a wake-up call at the perfect moment for a birding walk in our back forest.
If you are interested in human interaction, you could also learn about traditional Costa Rican agriculture from our neighbor Rodolfo,or visit with any or all of the members of our bilingual family across the yard. We are passionate about sharing our love for our community and the magic of our natural setting. Beth can provide a special perspective as a Canadian teacher who found her true home here, and Manolo offers the life-long connection as well as guided naturalist tours of the surrounding areas. Nati and Amaro, at 14 and 10, round out the picture as they gracefully dance between worlds.
The apartment offers hot water, internet access, kitchen area equipped with the basics and the extra bonus of artistic features like hardwood floors, stained glass, and local artwork. Our favorite feature is the extra wide balcony from which you can gaze upon the tops of the trees or be lulled to sleep by the sound of the creek below!
Santa Elena/Monteverde includes a wide range of smaller communites that lie along the border between the provinces of Puntarenas and Guanacaste. We are situated on the top of a mountain in the Tilaran mountain range with views of Arenal Volcano from afar. It is about a 3 hour drive as you wind your way up from the international highway, with spectacular views of the San Luis valley below along the route. You can travel here through Las Juntas or Sardinal. Escape the heat of the lowlands as you climb into our green mountain home!
Monteverde is most famous for its cloud forest, left as a watershed by the original Costa Rican and Quaker residents. Visitors can enjoy a wide variety of attractions, including much for the ecologically minded tourist with options for both education and adventure. Enjoy a guided day or night tour of many trail systems with a local naturalist, visit the Butterfly Garden, Bat Museum, or Frog Pond, whiz through a zipline canopy tour, or search out local artists at their galleries. . Music lovers can choose from the weekly concerts of the Monteverde Music Festival that enhance the ambiance for a 2 month period starting in January with professional Costa Rican musicians, or the Saturday night square dance at the Friends school and latin dancing in Santa Elena which are year-round events. . Monteverde is the perfect site both for nature lovers and those interested in rich cultural diversity.
clothes line, yard area, forest
Interaction with Guests
Interaction with Guests
We leave this up to our guests--some people like to weave themselves right into our family rhythms and others prefer more privacy and independence. We have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know everyone who has stayed with us, no matter their style of being.
We live in a rural neighborhood--Costa Rican neighbors on one side and forest/creek on the other. We offer a somewhat off the beaten track feel, but not too far out of town and access to tourist attractions. Great birding right outside your door!
There is a public bus from San Jose to Santa Elena 6:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. or shuttle services (eg. Interbus) with varied schedules.
In Santa Elena/Monteverde, there is good taxi infrastructure ($5 from our house to town) and public bus goes from Santa Elena to the Monteverde Reserve several times daily ($2.) There is adequate space for parking for cars right beside our rentals.
Other Things to Note
If you are looking for a place that accomodates more than 2 people, check out our other Monteverde Forest Hideaway to see our cabina, Posada del Perezoso.
No smoking, no pets and no parties please! We offer and appreciate a family atmosphere.
Staying with Beth and Manolo was a wonderful experience. We had a short time in the cloud forest and Beth was really helpful in offering to help us make reservations. Highly recommended.
Clean, real clean large studio in a building behind the home of Manolo and Beth. Warm fresh baked bread, candies on the pillows greeted us (we knew Beth was away for the day) after we received from her clear instructions on finding the place. Did I say it was clean?
Others say it all....the place feels genuinely comfortable and easy. We just sort of slipped into their compound and slid back out after a wonderful mountain experience. Ex...One night Beth comes over after they saw a sloth in a tree above our house. We rushed out and Manolo had a strong flashlight on it high in the tree. Just another day in Costa Rica with Beth and Manolo. Would stay there again and again.....
Bereits vor unserer Ankunft hat Beth uns mit sehr detaillierten Anfahrtsbeschreibungen unterstützt. Der.Empfang war außergewöhnlich herzlich und aufmerkam, wie wir das bisher noch nicht erlebt hatten.
Das Appartment ist noch schöner und stilvoller als die Internetseite vermuten lässt.
Manolo, Beth Mann, hat uns Interessamtes über die Einwanderer Monteverdes, ihren Einfluss auf die einheimische Bevölkerung und das heutige Zusammenleben erzählt. In einer Nachtwanderung ist es seinen geübten Augen gelungen, Tiere zu finden, die wir niemals alleine erspäht hätten: einen seltenen Vogel, Faultier, Viper, Tarantel, Gürteltier und einige Insekten.
Wir können diese beiden Gastgeber und ihre Unterkunft uneingeschränkt empfehlen.
My partner and I stayed at Casa Libelula for a week, and were absolutely delighted with our experience. The house itself is even more lovely than in the pictures. It's spotlessly clean, smells fresh, and has lots of comfortable chairs to read, write and lounge in. The kitchenette is perfect for preparing simple meals, and the porch is the perfect place to eat, sit, and nap on the hammock.
Beyond the space itself, Beth and Manolo were really spectacular hosts. They greeted us with freshly baked pumpkin bread, fruit, and juice, and welcomes us into their home for lunch to meet their wonderful family. We went on a night hike with Manolo, which was great (and during which we saw quite a few critters), and Beth even showed me how to make homemade donuts one afternoon. It was really a pleasure to get to know them.
The property is really perfectly situated for those who have a car. It's only a 5 minute drive into Santa Elena, for groceries, restaurants and shops. It's a 20-25 minute uphill walk, though, or a $5 taxi ride each way, so for those without a car it's something to take into consideration. We were there for a writing retreat, and didn't mind being a bit isolated at all, and Beth graciously gave us a lift into town on her way to work a few times, which was helpful. Also, if you follow their road in the opposite direction from town for about 45 minutes (ask Manolo to give you better directions) you'll come across one of the most spectacular sunset viewing spots I've ever seen!
It was a wonderful experience, all in all. Can't recommend highly enough!
Host extraordinaire! From the day I inquired about booking with Beth she was incredibly helpful, friendly and as genuine as anyone you'll ever encounter. For a short 2-night stay she answered an incredibly long list of questions prior to our arrival and once we made our way to Monteverde. The apartment was clean, well designed, spacious and full of unique, personal touches.
The apartment is a bit out of the way & we didn't have a car but managed with taxis and the local bus that runs 4 or 5 times a day from town (Saint Elena) to the Monteverde Reserve (and stops anywhere along the way).
The passion fruit juice, bowl of fresh fruit, and banana bread baking in the toaster oven when we arrived were the start of a great visit, the check-ins while there, the wonderful nature tour guiding provided by Beths' husband Manolo, the enthusiasm and patience to share the story of this place, and the overall welcoming feeling and efforts made this a visit and place to remember!
Thank you thank you!
Beth was an excellent host. She was very helpful with directions to the place, and recommendations with what to do around town - she even had fresh fruit waiting for us when we arrived! The place was great too. Rustic but clean, and with some really nice birdwatching from the front porch. I would recommend to anyone! Also, have Manolo give you a tour in the cloud forest if you want to see the quetzals!
We had a wonderful stay in casa libelula. Beth and her family are lovely hosts and we didn't miss out on anything. We had even a delicious cake waiting for us for our arrival. They helped us getting around and gave great local tips for visits and places to eat. The house is decorated with love and very clean and quiet. Next to it there is a place to do wonderful horse back riding tours. Everything is reachable walking distance but you still feel like you are in your own little paradise.
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We are a bi-cultural family who is passionate about sharing the magic of the place we call home. We strive to live as naturally and locally based as possible. Nati and Beth love music and Amaro and Manolo live for soccer. We all love to eat, though we don't always agree on what should be on the menu.