Rainforest Casita2 with Hot Springs

Cabin - Entire home/apt · Aguas Zarcas, Costa Rica

The Space

The Mariposa Casita is one of three charming new cottages on the grounds of the 35 acre Bio Thermales rainforest reserve with natural hot springs in the north-central Costa Rican heartland of rural farms and orchards near Aguas Zarcas and San Carlos (Quesada). This is authentic Costa Rica: clean, comfortable and close to nature. Three hours north of San Jose (airport), 45 minutes east of Fortuna and Volcano Arenal. Mariposa Casita is wheelchair accessible.

Our hot springs are ancient “deep Earth” sources that bubble up through the rainforest floor, bringing mineral-rich waters that have been in the Earth for at least 10,000 years. Our non-volcanic and slightly acidic waters are rich in calcium and magnesium, low in sulfur.

Four of our 8 organic form hot springs pools are located in the rainforest, and 4 hot springs pools as well as a large cool spring swimming pool are located in a meadow, surrounded by rainforest and one cool fresh spring pool in the rainforest (see below for more information). Casita guests enjoy 24 hour hot springs pools and 35 acres of rainforest access at no charge.

You may see our other listings on Airbnb at:

Tucano Casita (Toucan Casita) is listed as "Rainforest Casita with Hot Springs": airbnb.com/rooms/30358

Mariposa Casita (Butterfly Casita) is listed as "Rainforest Casita2 with Hot Springs" airbnb.com/rooms/51518

Colibri Casita (Hummingbird Casita) is listed as "Rainforest Casita3 with Hot Springs"
airbnb.com/rooms(phone number hidden) House: "Rainforest Tree House with Hot Springs" airbnb.com/rooms/50435

You can check availability of each accommodation by clicking on the "Calendar" tab above the main photo on each listing.

Mariposa Casita features (see floor-plan for all details):

Note on wifi -- we are currently working on a system to establish wifi connection with the casita, but at this time wifi is available only to the Tree House or at our reception area. If internet access is very important to your work, the best option is to bring a laptop/device with a USB port and purchase a 3G stick at SJO airport for about $50, no contract required. Remote locations in Costa Rica usually have spotty or no wifi and weather dependent.

• Wheelchair and special needs accessible
• Mariposa Casita is 25% larger than the Tucano Casita (also at Bio Thermales)
• Air-conditioning (but you probably won't need it)
• Queen sized bed with orthopedic mattress and hypoallergenic bedding
• 2 Twin-sized bed/settee with thick foam mattress and hypoallergenic bedding
• Hand-crafted rustic furniture from naturally harvested trees on the land
• Kitchen with refrigerator, micro-wave, coffee maker, electric skillet and basic kitchenware
• Tiled bathroom with real hot-water heater
• Porch with handmade table, swing, hammock
• Maid service every 3 days included
• Laundry service at extra charge per load
• Short walk to rainforest and hot springs pools
• All onsite hot springs and recreation activities included
• No telephone or television
• Hosts Kathy and Bernie live onsite
• Languages: English, Spanish, German, limited French
• Casita indoors square footage = 435 sq ft, with roofed porch = 615 sq ft

One-time/visit $10 cleaning fee. Ongoing housekeeping service after that is free.

Bio Thermales Hot Springs features:
• Our hot springs pools are all-natural mineral water just as it flows from the Earth
• Rainforest Pools from 90° - 105°F (31° - 40°C)
• Grotto Pools in meadow flow from the 112°F/45°C source pool (naciente) onward into
two larger and progressively cooler pools which are handicap-accessible and suitable
for small children
• Cool Thermal Pool in meadow is 90°F/31°C mineral water flowing from the thermal creek
• Cold Spring Water swimming pool (all natural, continuous water flow)
• Bathhouse in meadow with handicap accessible bathrooms and showers
• Ranchos – roofed tables with concrete floors and grills for picnics

Other Activities on our 35 acre rainforest reserve:
• Bird-watching: many types of toucans, oropendulas, parrots, hummingbirds, and the rare green macaw
• Rainforest: enjoy it from the casita porch or hot springs pools, take easy walks on paths or more adventurous hikes
• Fossils – enjoy our collection or hunt (gently) for your own
• Wildlife: two-toed sloths, iguanas, capuchin and mantled howler monkeys, colorful tree frogs, birds, butterflies, even a jaguarondi if you are lucky and quiet

We are a 45 minute drive from the many activities in Fortuna and Volcano Arenal -- such as ziplines, hanging bridges, white water rafting, slow river floats or kayaking through wildlife sanctuaries -- or an hour from the less trodden cloud forest of Juan Castro Blanco National Park, with wonderful bird watching, including the Resplendent Quetzal.

Bio Thermales Hot Springs is open to the public for day use of the hot springs, and most of our day visitors are Costa Ricans, so you may have the opportunity to experience warm and friendly Tico culture. Bio Thermales is generally not crowded, however, except on major holidays.

Food/Meals: The casita has a kitchen. There are many restaurants and a good supermarket within a 15 minute drive. Traditional Costa Rican meals can be delivered from a local caterer for very reasonable prices (Costa Rican food is tasty but not spicy). Otherwise, we can call a taxi or synchronize a food shopping trip when we go to town for errands.

Driving from SJO airport:

We highly recommend at least a small 4 wheel drive car. The last 3 kilometers are country roads.

Three hours of daylight are needed to safely drive here from the SJO airport before sunset at 5:30 pm. The drive through mountainous cloud forests is splendid in daylight, but prone to fog and rain at night, creating hazardous visibility conditions. Finding our countryside location will also be far easier if you arrive the first time before sunset. If your plane lands in the morning or mid-day, you can drive here directly from the airport. Otherwise, it is safer to book a room near the airport on your first night.

Last night in Costa Rica:
Staying near the airport on the night before a departing flight is prudent – in case traffic, road or weather conditions cause unexpected delays -- unless you have an afternoon or evening departing flight.

Please email us before booking if we are your first and/or last destination in Costa Rica.

Guest Access

Four of our 8 organic form hot springs pools are located in the rainforest, and 4 hot springs pools as well as a large cool spring swimming pool are located in a meadow, surrounded by rainforest and one cool fresh spring pool in the rainforest (see below for more information). Casita guests enjoy 24 hour hot springs pools and 35 acres of rainforest access at no charge.

Interaction with Guests

We enjoy interacting with our guests and making suggestions for and even help book activities in the area, as well as options for transportation. For personal interaction, we take our cues from our guests -- if they prefer privacy, we respect that; if they enjoy interaction, we are open to interaction and have met many delightful new friends in this way.

Room type: Entire home/apt
Bed type: Real Bed
Accommodates: 4
Bedrooms: 1
Bathrooms: 1
Beds: 3
Extra people: $12 / night after 2 guests
Weekly Price: $450 /week
Monthly Price: $1300 /month
Cleaning Fee: $10
Check Out: 12:00 PM (noon)
Cancellation: Strict
Pet Owner: Dog(s)

Overall Guest Satisfaction

Check In
  • We stayed in casita 2, beautifully decorated wood carvings inside the unit with a large sized bathroom and bedroom! The kitchen had everything necessary to cook meals, and a porch outside with a beautiful wood table, hammock, swinging chair! Biothermales was beautiful , the attention to detail made this place very special! It was nature at its finest being able to hear the howler monkeys, birds humming and creatures buzzing made this a wonderful Costa Rican experience! We had a banana tree by our casita and once the darkness fell we could see all sorts of wildlife going for bananas just feet away! It was amazing to see!! We hiked through the forest by day and relaxed in the beautiful pools subsequently thereafter which we basically had all to ourselves! Catering is available and was delicious!

    Kathy as a hostess is as amazing as they come!!! She made organizing and getting to biothermales a breeze! She basically organized everything for us, calling tour companies, shuttle services etc! She was very accessible and quick to answer and assist us with anything and everything under the sun!!! Upon arrival she was so sweet, down to earth and like an old friend! She gave us a tour and was very thorough providing us with information!

    This was a great experience! with a great location, Bernie and co.'s functional art and Kathy's amazing hostess skills...made for a wonderful stay!!! I highly highly recommend staying here!!!!! Thank you so much!!!!

    April 2014
  • An absolutely special natural resource that has been well utilized for public use with thought and care. If seeing a toad crossing or a lizard saying hi in the bathroom makes you squeamish then this is not the place for you! The house was beautifully hand built with lovely touches.

    March 2014
  • Absolutely fantastic place. Do not venture road there without 4WD and do not deviate from Kathy's directions; once you arrive - you are in paraiso privado. Friendly, non-intrusive locals come in during the day to enjoy thermal pools and park setting; after 6pm - you will have any hot spring to yourself, for as late as you wish. There is also a long, deep swimming pool. Turn out your flashlight as you soak, hear the banana palm leaves rustle overhead, enjoy the amazing night sky views while fireflies dot the dark. Then retire to your exotic casita and listen to the tropical animal and insect life around as you fall asleep. There is a winding, hiking trail on the property that you may have completely to yourselves if you time it right. The pride, care, and skill put into every facet of construction of this property is stellar. If you have the extreme good fortune to have Johan (caretaker/craftsman) facilitate your stay, you will lack nothing. Even better is if his gracious family is on site - you will feel the best welcome possible to Costa Rica. As to the casita itself, if you are new to heat of CR, choose the Mariposa with air con - it can give you respite if needed, but fully screened with windows all around if not. Kitchenette fully stocked with pots/pans, keep the counters pristine to avoid expected critters or stash your stuff in the little frig. Take everyone's advice about Shirley's meals: order them to be ready for your arrival and/or breakfast to your door - fresh, tasty, comida tipica (we think the best comidas tipicas we had in CR so far). Day trips from casita always mean that rocky road in and out, but it seems easier and faster each time (4WD, 4WD!). The supermercado at Muelle intersection has a guard, is clean, well-stocked & friendly - stop/go here to load up for your stay. We are still traveling in CR but already wish we had booked a month at Rainforest Casita/ Bio Thermales. Do not overlook this jewel.

    March 2014
  • Wonderful place to stay. Beautiful place to stay, well kept villas with plenty of space for the three of us. We'd love to come back, without our 18 year old, who did not want to chill out. Would have loved to spend a day just enjoying the property.

    The hiking trail was beautiful and the tubs at night, under the stars, with no one around could not be beat.

    Johann, the manager (part time), crafts man, and all around nice guy was a pleasure to visit with. We spent a part of an evening conversing about Costa Rica, the history and culture.

    March 2014
  • Kathy and Bernie are great hosts. Kathy was really helpful with travel plans before we got there. She answered so many of my emails with great info about the area and CR in general.

    We stayed in the Mariposa for a week. It's a little out of the way but it's a bit of paradise in the middle of the rainforest and a great place to unwind. The pools Bernie made and the grounds are fabulous! A little busy with locals during the day, especially Sundays, but not too busy to bother you. In the mornings you can sit outside with your coffee and enjoy the peace and quiet and the wildlife, and the place is all yours after 6 pm. Sit in the gorgeous natural thermal pools by yourself or maybe with guests from the other two cabins, no one else - 9 or 10 to choose from, hot to cool. Bring a small flashlight or headlamp if you can - helped to get to the pools.

    The casita is fantastic. Good kitchen, big bathroom and shower, air conditioning, queen bed, all very clean. We heard howler monkeys, saw an iguana, hummingbirds, fireflies, all kinds of other birds, all from our porch. The Mariposa is the best casita - has the biggest swing.

    Grocery stores and gas stations are close by, you can have meals delivered by Shirley, good food near by, everything you need.

    If you can make it work, DO go on the slow river float and rainforest hike with Humberto Arias! It was the most fabulous day of our two-week trip. Kathy can arrange that.

    Big thumbs up for this spot, so happy that I found it - would stay there again for sure - we loved it!

    Thank you so much to Kathy and Bernie and everyone that helps them out!

    January 2014
  • The drive to the Bio Thermales is an adventure in itself with beautiful scenery along the way. The GPS definitely made it easy but having a printed map is a must for back up (advised by Kathy and Bernie). The hot springs were well maintained and there were so many pools to choose from. If you like simplicity and nature, then I would recommend any room at this Bio Thermales over commercialized hot springs hotels in the area.

    August 2012
  • The place was amazing, the pictures do not do it justice. Johan was a perfect host in Kathy and Bernies absence. To wake up with the wildlife right outside your window with a hot costa Rican breakfast delivered right to your door was a perfect way to start your day. The hotsprings exceeded our expectations and were all amazing. Thanks Bernie and Kathy, looking forward to coming back

    August 2012
  • We recommend the experience to everyone! The hot springs are wonderful and very therapeutic . Our casita was very comfortable. The grounds are very well kept. The owners communicated with us in a timely manner and it was greatly appreciated. Thank you for a good 2 nights.

    August 2012
  • Bernie and Kathy went out of their way to make us feel at home and to make room for us to stay one more night than originally planned. If you need to relax, come to BioThermales! Let Estrella do the cooking for you, as well. We stayed in Mariposa for 2 nights, then moved up to the Treehouse for a spectacular view of the whole property. We enjoyed our hike through the jungle with Johan, too. The hot springs pools are relaxing and soothing.

    July 2012
  • Kathy and Bernie have created such a beautiful little oasis filled with relaxation, soothing baths and a striking atmosphere. We instantly knew that all of the rooms have been created with love - from the bed stands, to the door ways - everything was hand-carved to fit the environment in which these casitas lay. And the hot springs are incredible, alternating between hot and cold, secluded and public. And then there is Kathy, a beautiful soul filled with so much kindness and appreciation, she helped us through every step of the way and we are incredible grateful. We will certainly have to return again soon!

    If you are coming for as peaceful of a time as we did, we recommend coming during the week when you have many of the springs to yourself!

    June 2012
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Deutsch, English, Español
University of Minnesota, University of Munich
Pura Vida! (“Pure life” is an all-purpose greeting in Costa Rica, as well as a way of life.) Kathy and Bernie (American and German, respectively) have designed Bio Thermales so guests may enjoy the beneficent hot springs and rainforest while making only positive impacts on the rainforest in our care. This is a very healing and lovely place and we look forward to sharing it with you. We have worked on many environmental endeavors, professionally and as volunteers. Bernie is an engineer, organic gardener, woodworker, artist and great cook. Kathy is a nutritionist, writer, graphic designer, and community organizer. We have also been active in many human rights efforts. We have a black Lab, horses, cows, tilapia pond and free-ranging chickens.
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