Flights/Hotels in San Jose
The closest airport to Villa Punto de Vista is San Jose Airport. Direct flights are available from London Gatwick and LAX. Below are some recommendations for hotels in San Jose.All of these hotels are bookable through Expedia.
Please let us know your flight details once you have booked.
Transportation to/from Manuel Antonio
We will arrange transportation from San Jose to Villa Punto de Vista on 18th May at 12pm. We will confirm pick-up details closer to the date. There will be a planned lunch stop on the way. You will arrive at the villa between 4pm and 5pm. We will also arrange transportation back to San Jose on 23 May.
Activities in Manuel Antonio
We will arrange a couple of group activities in Manuel Antonio, including a group dinner on Thursday 18th May. Please let us know if you have any interest in any of the following:
Do I need a tourist visa?
UK and US passport holders do not require a Tourist Visa for stays under 90 days. A valid passport is required for entry into Costa Rica valid for at least 6 months with at least one free page for an entry stamp.
What is the currency in Costa Rica?
Costa Rica’s currency is the Colón. 1 USD = around 500 Costa Rican Colónes. 1 GBP = around 750 Costa Rican Colónes.
US dollars are widely accepted in Costa Rica, especially at upscale hotels and restaurants—some places even list their prices in US dollars to make it easier for international travellers. For smaller services (including local meals or public transportation), be prepared to pay with Colónes.
Where can I exchange currency?
When you arrive, you may exchange your money at any local bank. You may also get foreign currency by using your ATM card at marked ATMs.
Most vendors give discounts for using cash and some do not accept credit cards, while many only take VISA or Master Card. Travellers cheques are not widely accepted.
Can I drink tap water in Costa Rica?
The local authorities state that the drinking water in Costa Rica is perfectly safe but it is recommended that you stick to the bottled variety wherever possible to play it safe.
What time is it in Costa Rica?
Costa Rica is 6 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time, which is equivalent to Central Standard Time (CST) in North America from mid March through the first Sunday in November.
Do I need any vaccinations?
In the UK it is advised that a general practitioner or practice nurse is consulted 6-8 weeks before travel to determine whether or not vaccinations are required. Check the latest advice for England and Scotland.
In the US it is also advised that you around 2 months before travel with a doctor. Latest advice can be found here.
How do I get from San Jose to Villa Punto de Vista?
Gloriela Saborio is our pre arrival concierge contact for the villa. He will help with transportation to and from the villa via mini bus (or helicopter/plane if desired!). Car hires are not advised as If you are involved in a car accident while driving the authorities can prevent you leaving the country until the matter is resolved!
What tours are available in the area ?
Again Gloriela is available to help book tours ahead of our visit. We will ensure that his contact details are made available soon with instructions on how to book tours. The following tours are available:
•Manuel Antonio National Park Tour
•Canopy / Zipline Experience
•White Water Rafting
•Rainforest Bird Watching Tour
•Mangrove Boat or Kayak Tours
•Damas Island Boat Tour
•Water Skiing and Wake Boarding
Do I need to pay for accomodation?
We have booked the villa for 5 nights from Thursday 18th May 2017 until Tuesday 23rd May 2017. You do not need to pay anything for these nights. If you will be arriving in Costa Rica before 18th or staying after 23rd these costs will be not be covered by us.
Where can I find general travel advice for Costa Rica?
UK government website.
US State department website.
If you have any other questions please let us know so we can add to this list!
Most airllines will not allow bookings until 1 year before travel but to give you an idea we have summarised the costs based on May 2016 costs (http://www.skyscanner.net/).
Direct return flights from London Gatwick to San Jose costs around £488 with British Airways.
There are 2 return flight options both which have 1 stop.
1) Edinburgh to New York Newark to San Jose with United Airlines costs around £567 and takes around 17 hours including connection.
2) Edinburgh to London Gatwick to San Jose with British Airways costs around £588 and also takes around 17 hours including connection.
Again most airllines will not allow bookings until 1 year before travel but to give you an idea we have summarised the costs based on May 2016 costs (http://www.skyscanner.net/).
Direct return flights from LAX to San Jose cost between $378 and $506 depending on the airline. The lower cost above is Alaska Airlines and the higher United Airlines.
A departure tax of $29 USD is payable, As of January 2016 the majority of airlines include the tax as part of the ticket fare. Please check with your airline if this is the case.
If the departure tax for Costa Rica was not included in your airline tickets it must still be paid in cash (U.S. dollars or Costa Rican Colones) or by credit card before you check in at the airline counter for your flight.
We have booked this beautiful villa for 5 nights from Thursday 18th May 2017 to Tuesday 23rd May 2017. For more information about the villa follow this link. Check in is at 3pm on 18th and check out is at 12pm on 23rd.
Saturday 20th May. Details to be confirmed.
Surrounded by the exotic rainforests and sparkling coastline of Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica’s Villa Punto de Vista is a lavish sanctuary of peace and privacy. The 10-suite estate accommodates up to 27 guests in 12,000 square feet of luxurious villa, with 180-degree Pacific Ocean views, an infinity pool, spacious decking and other luxe amenities. Ensconced within 2.5 acres of private rainforest reserve, the villa is also a retreat to nature – complete with inquisitive squirrel monkeys and bespectacled sloths.
Villa Punto de Vista is much more than a private villa: it is a first-class getaway that blends the amenities of an exclusive resort with the intimacy of a private estate and the ambiance of a five-star hotel. The result is an exclusive enclave that meets the sophisticated expectations of the world’s most discerning travelers.
Villa Punto de Vista’s offerings are incomparable: elegant guest rooms, each uniquely designed and furnished, and spacious social areas, including expansive decks, a sparkling pool, and a media center. A grand ballroom, rooftop deck, and dining terrace make the villa a perfect choice for weddings, family reunions, corporate retreats and other events and celebrations. And our full-time staff, including your private butler, pre-arrival concierge, housekeeping and the villa support staff, attends to every detail of your stay.
A gourmet breakfast, complete with Costa Rican coffee and passion-fruit champagne mimosas, welcomes you every morning. Parrots squawk in the trees, and endangered monkeys dangle like acrobats outside your window. The great Pacific unrolls before you, a tropical tapestry of sapphire and aquamarine. The villa’s unparalleled location – surrounded by jungle, yet within earshot of the crashing surf – is Manuel Antonio’s best, and the villa’s distinct architecture is unmatched anywhere in Costa Rica – or the world.
All rooms include the following luxury amenities:
King or Twin-Bed Configurations
Swiss-Made Ergo-Beds & Mattresses
Eco-Luxury Bath / Spa Amenities
En-Suite Bath w/ Rain Shower & Balcony
Mini-Fridge, Hair Dryer, Steamer & Safe
Apple iPads and with AirPlay™ Audio
Air Conditioning & Fans Over Each Bed
Wi-Fi with In-Ceiling Audio System
Jennifer Adams Lux Collection™ Sheets
Located 120 miles (192 km) from San Jose on the Pacific coast, Manuel Antonio National Park is internationally recognized as being one of the most bio diverse parks on the planet. Lush tropical forests, lagoons, mangroves and pristine white sandy beaches make up one of the most diverse ecosystems imaginable. Among the 109 species of mammals and 184 species of birds, some of the frequently viewed residents include white-faced and howler monkeys, two and three toed sloths and iguanas. The endangered squirrel monkey calls the park home as well.
The National Park was born from the desire of the people in the region to preserve their access to one of the most beautiful parts of Costa Rica. The citizens of Quepos had enjoyed the area for generations until it passed into the hands of a series of developers. When one of them, Arthur Bergeron, began cutting trees and erecting gates on the road in preparation for constructing a private resort the locals reacted by requesting the Costa Rican Legislative Assembly to protect the area for all to enjoy. In 1972 the National Park was formed with a land area covering 1 983 hectors (the smallest of any Costa Rican national park).
Scuba diving, snorkelling, sea kayaking, mountain biking, and hiking provide opportunities to experience the tropical wildlife within the park.
Costa Rica (literally meaning "Rich Coast") is a country in Central America, bordered by Nicaragua to the north, Panama to the southeast, the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Caribbean Sea to the east. It has a population of around 4.5 million, a quarter of which live in the metropolitan area of the capital and largest city, San José.
Because Costa Rica is located between 8 and 12 degrees north of the Equator, the climate is tropical year round. Costa Rica's seasons are defined by how much rain falls during a particular period. The year can be split into two periods, the dry season (December to April) known to the residents as summer, and the rainy season (May to November), known locally as winter.
Flora and Fauna
Costa Rica is home to a rich variety of plants and animals. While the country has only about 0.1% of the world's landmass, it contains 5% of the world's biodiversity including. Some commonly seen animals include Sloths, Jaguars, Tucans, 4 species of Monkey and Mccaws. Around 25% of the country's land area is in protected national parks and protected areas, the largest percentage of protected areas in the world (developing world average 13%, developed world average 8%). Costa Rica has successfully managed to diminish deforestation from some of the worst rates in the world from 1973 to 1989, to almost zero by 2005.
Pharmaceuticals, financial outsourcing, software development, and ecotourism have become the prime industries in Costa Rica's economy. High levels of education among its residents make the country an attractive investing location. Since 1999, tourism earns more foreign exchange than the combined exports of the country's three main cash crops: bananas, pineapples and coffee. Coffee production has played a key role in Costa Rica's history and economy, and by 2006, was the third cash crop export.
Christianity is Costa Rica's predominant religion, with Roman Catholicism being the official state religion according to the 1949 Constitution, which at the same time guarantees freedom of religion. 70.5% of Costa Ricans are Roman Catholics (44.9% practicing Catholics), 13.8% are evangelical Protestants, 11.3% report that they do not have a religion, and 4.3% belong to another religion.
The primary language spoken in Costa Rica is Spanish, which features characteristics distinct to the country. Some native languages are still spoken in indigenous reservations. About 10.7% of Costa Rica's adult population also speaks English, 0.7% French, and 0.3% speaks Portuguese or German as a second language.
Costa Rican cuisine is a blend of Native American, Spanish, African and many other cuisine origins. Dishes such as the very traditional tamale and many others made of corn are the most representative. The cuisine is known for being fairly mild, with high reliance on fresh fruits and vegetables. Rice and black beans are a staple of most traditional Costa Rican meals.
It was 14th August 2015 and we were on the beautiful Island of Maui, Hawaii staying at the Hyatt Regency Ka’anapali. We had both enjoyed a relaxing morning. I had played golf at the local golf course and Deirdre had a few spa treatments in the hotel. In the afternoon we went to Lahina, a nearby town, to sample a local delicacy shaved ice (which incidentally is fantastic). We returned to the sleepy beachside town later in the evening to have dinner at Pacific’O, a quaint restaurant on the beach, illuminated by a gorgeous sunset. After the meal we went back to the hotel where I suggested a glass of wine on the balcony overlooking the Pacific Ocean and a dark sky full of stars. The engagement ring was in my pocket as Deirdre put her head on my shoulder.
Not a bad build up to a proposal!!!
Unfortunately the excitement got too much for Deirdre who fell asleep on my shoulder, jumped awake and announced that she was going to bed, leaving me to compose himself! Undeterred I put the ring under my pillow and did my best to sleep.
In the morning I woke early. Excited and nervous, I was going over and over the proposal in my head. After what seemed like a lifetime, Deirdre was awake. We talked in bed. I told Deirdre that I was so happy we had met the previous year, how much I loved her and before he could stop myself I was reaching under my pillow, opening the engagement ring box and saying “Deirdre, I have a serious question. . . Will you marry me” Without a pause (to my relief) Deirdre answered yes!
Following the excitement, we enjoyed a champagne breakfast on the balcony overlooking the Ocean.
We are now happy to be planning a wedding just like our engagement, in paradise.
I had to travel to London for work from 8th to 10th September 2014. As the 8th was a Monday I decided to travel down to London the Saturday before and stay with my friend Euan.
It was a warm day so Euan and I went to Clapham Common and met a few of his friends to play drinking lawn bowls (I can explain to anyone unsure of the rules!). After a few hours in the sun we went to one of my favourite London restaurants Bodeans then back to Euan’s flat for a few beers.
At about 11pm we were debating whether or not we should go to Euan’s friend Emily’s birthday party. We decided to go and got a taxi to a pub in Brixton where the party was in full swing. After a few drinks in the bar the party moved on. Me and Euan followed to a club where there was a long queue. I don’t remember exactly how we started talking, but I was suddenly chatting to a cute American girl (just to be clear it was Deirdre!).
Deirdre and I chatted for the next 30 minutes or so like we had known each other for years. As we approached the front of the queue a number of the party were declined admission to the club as they did not have any ID. We all proceeded to a nearby bar/club and I started dancing with Deirdre. At this point I think it is important to add that my club dancing is terrible and I am amazed that it did not lead to Deirdre walking away in disgust! However after showcasing some of my best moves I leaned in and kissed Deirdre.
Fast forward 15 hours . . . I had been texting Deirdre and we agreed we would meet up on the Monday night. We met up at a restaurant near her work where I had eaten dinner. On the way to a bar in Shoreditch I uttered the words “I would never live in London”. Moving on!. We spent the next few ours chatting on what was undoubtedly the best date I have ever been on.
After returning to Scotland Deirdre and I kept texting and a few weeks later I asked her to come up to visit. Unbelievably she said yes! After initial awkwardness we relaxed and had a great weekend (see our first photo together at Queens View near Pitlochry from that weekend on the left) and the rest as they say is history. We spent the next 8 months of flying between Edinburgh and London before we took the plunge in June 2015 when I moved in with Deirdre. A decision which I have not regretted since!
On 6 September 2014, I had double-booked plans for the evening, agreeing to go to a dinner party at my friend’s house in Islington and also agreeing to go to my friend Emily’s birthday party in Brixton, which basically couldn’t be on more opposite sides of London. After the dinner, I wanted to bail on Emily’s birthday, but my friend’s Taylor and Miles dragged me with them. We spent the Uber ride trying to find Miles dates on Tinder.
We arrived just as everyone was leaving the first bar and headed with the group down the road to wait in line at some club. At some point, in between putting Emily in a shopping trolley and stopping Taylor from talking to this random person who she thought was in our group (he wasn’t), I started talking to this cute Scottish accountant. We ended up talking for ages in the queue and even found each other in the next bar where Ross (finally) kissed me!
After our first meeting, I knew that I wanted to see Ross again, so I texted him and asked him to go out on the Monday since I knew he was in town for a couple of days for work. To my delight, he agreed. We met up at about 7 at this restaurant around the corner from my office (where he had already eaten dinner without me, which I didn’t think was a great sign)! We ended up hanging out way too late and having the best date I have ever been on.
I was so glad that we kept texting even after he went back up to Scotland and I was even more glad when he asked me to come up and visit. (I was 90% sure he wouldn’t murder me and when I told my mom about it, she didn’t freak out so I figured it was okay.) That weekend was pretty much perfect and the rest is history.
Ross is a great guy! (well if I am going to write about myself I might as well be positive!).
I was born in the former industrial powerhouse of Kirkcaldy, Fife which became (in)famous for linoleum production (the smell of which is a vivid childhood memory) and being the birth place of former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown (no relation!).
I lived the first few years of my life (I am told) in the towns of Ladybank and Cupar in Fife before at the age of 4 moving to Birmingham, England. Just over a year later we moved back to Cupar (I suspect because my accent had become unbearable! – for those not familiar with the ‘Brummie’ accent Google Lenny Henry videos and you may have some sympathy with my parents!).
I spent the next 12 years living in Cupar with my parents and 2 younger brothers Kevan and Mark where I attended the local primary and secondary schools. During that time I played rugby for Howe of Fife Rugby Club, golfed at St Andrews and learned to play the piano.
In 2003, I finished school and took a year out. I worked in a 5 star hotel for 9 months before jumping on a plane to Australia where I spent 3 months before going to the University of Edinburgh.
I received my Masters in Business Studies after 4 years and aside from studying I furthered my love of travelling by going on holidays to New York, Italy and Russia, working in Maryland for 3 months and travelling to Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and New Zealand with a friend for 2 months.
After graduating, I started training as an accountant with PKF an audit firm. After a few years of ticking and bashing I moved to RBS where I spent 4 years plying my trade as a chartered accountant in Edinburgh. I then followed my heart to London in June 2015 by getting another job at RBS (and moving in with Deirdre!).
I love being in London with Deirdre and can’t wait until our wedding day!
I was born in San Dimas, California, a town famous for a mildly unsanitary water park and Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure. We lived within the same ten mile radius for my entire childhood. I read non-stop about all kinds of places I wanted to travel to and basically dreamed about being anywhere else. I, however, somehow ended up going to university in the same ten mile radius (and in the same town as my high school)!
In 2007, I went to study for a semester in Germany in the vibrant town of Landau, which was basically the German equivalent of the town I grew up in! While I was studying there, I got hooked on travelling and on Europe. I knew I would try to come back and live someday!
After my semester abroad, I went back to California and started working in a divorce attorney’s office after graduation. I decided to apply to law schools (though I definitely knew that I didn’t want to do family law) and got into UCLA School of Law.
After I graduated in 2012, I started working at Latham & Watkins in its Orange County office. While I liked living right by the beach, when an opportunity came up to move to London, I jumped at it as I had always wanted to live in Europe again (and it meant living in the same city as my sister, Hilary). I love living in London and things got even better when Ross was able to move down to live with me!
We have now confirmed our booking at Villa Punto de Vista! We have booked 5 nights at the villa from Thursday 18th May 2017 to Tuesday 23rd May 2017!
Deirdre Jones and Ross Brown launch their personal wedding website at deirdreandross.wedsite.com
Welcome to our wedding website! We are so excited that you will all be joining us in Costa Rica for our wedding in May 2017.
We hope that this website will give you more information about the country, the venue and the big day. We will update the news section regularly to ensure you are as excited about the trip as we are!
Ross & Deirdre