Welcome to the Tulemar Blog

  • Guest Spotlight: Jackie Medvetz and Carl Lam

    There’s a lot of things we love here at Tulemar: The beach, the jungle, good food, amazing views, and sloths (of course), just to name a few. The one thing we probably love the most, though, is our guests! Carl Lam and Jackie Medvetz are no exception. This young couple from California made Tulemar their last stop on their tour de Costa Rica, and the rave reviews of their stay have us blushing.

    Read on to hear about their visit and to get some great tips for your own stay.

    Tulemar: First off, we are SO happy you stayed with us and we got to know you! You were such wonderful guests. Do you mind telling our readers when you visited and how long you stayed?

    Jackie & Carl: My boyfriend and I visited in the beginning of the rainy season, but all we got were beautiful days with some soothing afternoon showers. Sept 25-Oct 2 were our full dates in Costa Rica and we stayed at Tulemar for our last two nights. Had we known how amazing this place was we definitely would have planned to stay longer!

    T: We are so happy to hear that you loved your stay! What home did you stay in?

    J&C: We stayed in the Bungalows (Unit 114), nestled in the jungle, on the side of a cliff, at canopy level, over-looking the ocean. These bungalows were AMAZING! I repeat AMAZING! The bungalow is mostly all windows offering panoramic views for as far as you can see, but also offers privacy because you’re surrounded by the canopy layer of the jungle. Staying at Tulemar allows you to be submersed into the jungle with all the luxuries of being in a resort. You have the option to hang at the pool, take out the free kayaks, hit the beach, or eat at the resort restaurant with, again, more breathtaking views of the jungle, ocean, and wildlife.

    T: It really sounds like you had an amazing time. If you could choose one thing about your trip that was your absolute favorite, what would it be?

    J&C: Our favorite part about our trip was our experience the last three days and two nights at Tulemar. We were completely content with animal watching at our bungalow, but the second you leave the gated community there are plenty of little shops, great restaurants, and an awesome yoga studio with ocean views, all within walking distance. This part of our trip allowed us to be completely relaxed. We had everything we needed right within Tulemar: a bar, restaurant, pool, beach, kayaks, all at our fingertips. Tulemar puts you in touch with the true beauty of Costa Rica; the nature surrounds you, the animals are everywhere, you have front row seats to the sunrises and sunsets, and then the day is topped off with some evening showers to put you to sleep.

    T: Ah, yes! The animals! Sounds like you saw a lot of them. Can you tell us about some of the animals you saw during your stay?

    J&C: We stayed in the jungle for the duration of our trip, Sept 25- Oct 2, but saw very few animals (aside from our tours) until we got to Tulemar! Let me tell you about the wildlife at Tulemar: it’s truly breathtaking! The moment we arrived at check-in we saw two howler monkeys, a sloth, and a porcupine! Once we got to our villa we had about 15 little titi monkeys jumping from our roof into the trees right outside our window. We saw monkeys every day of our stay. They hang out in the trees and are so close for viewing but pay no heed to humans. We saw about 20 of the little titi monkeys again on our last morning at Tulemar, as well as a mama monkey and her baby walking across a wire near the check in desk. We ate at the restaurant next to our bungalow and the waiter pointed out a sloth in the tree next to us. We also got to see a flock of toucans flying from one tree to another early one morning (so cool)! On the last morning of our stay we were lucky enough to see a few whales out in the ocean from our living room! There’s also tons of iguanas EVERYWHERE! The wildlife is just flourishing here and it’s oh-so-beautiful!

    T: That is so awesome! The wildlife at Tulemar is our favorite, too. Now, what about our second favorite: FOOD! Did you get a chance to explore any of the surrounding restaurants?

    J&C: There was an amazing restaurant across the street called Café Milagro. It’s low key with a great patio, yummy local plates and delicious plates native to other countries as well. We also had dinner at an awesome restaurant nearby called Emilio’s. It offers amazing views and a fun open air environment. Although we were able to eat at the surrounding restaurants, one of our favorite places was the one right at Tulemar (Tule Cafe) next to the family pool. Their ceviche was amazing, and so were the entrees and dessert. It also has an amazing view! The staff was very helpful and accommodating. Not to mention, the 2 for 1 happy hour beer special can’t be beat!

    T: All of that sounds so great! Any recommendations on what to order?

    J&C: Yes! You’re in Costa Rica, so eat the local food! For breakfast we ate a tico plate every day (don’t forget the Lizano sauce), for lunch we had the casada plate, and for dinner we typically ate some kind of fresh local fish (their red snapper is amazing). For an appetizer we recommend ordering patacones. Don’t forget dessert! The flan and flambe were our favorites!

    T: Sounds amazing! Now, to wrap up: If you could give one piece of advice for future guests at Tulemar, what would it be?

    J&C: First and foremost, definitely make sure to stay at least 4 nights at Tulemar. We stayed two nights and did not want to leave. We were just getting used to our jungle paradise! Although we had an absolutely amazing time doing the activities we did there, had we stayed a bit longer we could have taken more advantage of the free kayaks, snorkeling, and secluded beach. And just a couple more pointers: Wake up early! It’s your best bet for seeing all the wildlife in action and the opportunity to see the sun rise. Also, be sure to bring some bug spray and itch relief just in case you do get bit by bugs!

    T: GREAT pointers! Anything else you’d like to add about your stay in Costa Rica?

    J&C: Fully submersing yourself in the Costa Rican culture is like hitting the reset button. The way of life here really reflects the local saying “pura vida” or pure life. They live simply, take care of their country, and are so helpful to tourists. Visiting Costa Rica is truly a life-changing experience!

    Carl and Jackie – it was a pleasure having you stay with us. Your kind words and amazing tips are so much appreciated. We cannot wait to see you again SOON!

    Pura Vida,


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  • 10 Reasons To Stay At Tulemar

    If you’re not quite convinced Tulemar is the right place for your next vacation, we totally get it… We’re picky too and we admire your high standards. Luckily, we are confident that we can meet and exceed those expectations of yours. Not convinced? Check out these 10 reasons why you should stay in Tulemar:

    1. The Tulemar Beach
      • Yep! We have our own beach! Not only that, but the beach is fully equipped with free lounge chairs, umbrellas, kayaks, boogie boards, towels and wait staff.
    2. Personal Concierge
      • Each rental comes with your own personal concierge who will help with all the planning and details, as well and make your dinner/activity reservations, help with grocery shopping, and assist with anything else you need on your trip!
    3. No “Hotel” Building
      • If you’re coming to the jungle, why stay in a stuffy hotel room that keeps you away from nature and wildlife? We have a unique collection of individually owned bungalows, casas, and private villas that put you right in the middle of the action!
    4. Ocean Views
      • We’ve heard that vitamin-sea is good for the soul, and we can’t agree more! That’s why our amazing hillside location allows you to have panoramic ocean views from any of our rentals.
    5. Resort Pools
      • Yep, pools with an s. We have four gorgeous pools equipped with towels, wait staff, gorgeous views, and plenty of wildlife. One is even for adults only if you’re wanting a little peace & quiet.
    6. Dining Options
      • We have a full-service restaurant plus our Beach Bar and Grill, as well as 15 incredible restaurants within 3 blocks of our front gates! Feeling like a homebody? We’re also close to the grocery store if you have a hankering to cook your own meal in your fully equipped kitchen.
    7. SLOTHS (and other wildlife)
      • We understand this doesn’t even need an explanation, but we enjoy overdelivering, so we’re going to give you one anyway. There’s a reason The Sloth Institute of Costa Rica’s research and release facility is located inside Tulemar – we have just as much, if not more, sloths and wildlife than Manuel Antonio National Park. Not only can you see sloths, but you can also see monkeys, toucans, scarlet macaws, iguanas, and other amazing wildlife daily!
    8. Nature and Hiking Trails
      • You can easily explore the flora and fauna of Manuel Antonio on any of our several hiking trails right in Tulemar. Prefer hiking in a group? Enjoy the trails during one of our daily Sloth Walks guided by The Sloth Institute of Costa Rica!
    9. Free Shuttle Service
      • Since we are located on 33 acres, we understand the thought of walking from point A to point B can be a little daunting after a long day of sun and cervezas. Luckily, we have a free shuttle service that can bring you to and from the beach, as well as anywhere else within Tulemar.

    Last but not least….

    1. We are in the heart of Manuel Antonio
      • Manuel Antonio has been recognized as one of the most beautiful places in the world, and you’ll get to be right in the middle of it all! Plus, there is plenty of shopping, groceries, ATM, dining, and beaches within easy walking distance.

    Now that we have you convinced, we can’t wait to see you soon!

    Pura Vida,


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  • Where Did ‘Pura Vida’ Come From, Anyway?

    Ahhhhh pura vida! We just love that phrase, don’t you?

    If you’re not familiar, ‘pura vida’ (poo-rah vee-dah) means “the pure life” in literal translation… However, you will undoubtedly hear this phrase non-stop in Costa Rica as a term of gratitude, as a response to “how are you”, as a replacement for “you’re welcome”, or even just as a random outburst of excitement. It’s the nation’s unofficial slogan, and beyond that, it truly is a tico way of life: a Costa Rican hakuna matata, if you will.

    We must admit that pura vida sure is contagious. This got us thinking: who is to blame (or thank, rather) for giving us this Pura Vida Fever?

    One would assume that such an iconic expression must stem from a monumental event in Costa Rican history, or perhaps was the catchphrase of a beloved president from long ago.  However, that’s not quite the case…

    All signs point to a gentleman by the name of Gilberto Martinez Solares, the director of a 1956 Mexican film by the name of — what other than —  Pura Vida. The film tells a story of a luckless man who encountered countless misfortunes. Despite his negative circumstances the character would exclaim “pura vida” to keep a positive outlook on otherwise bleak situations.

    Click here to watch a clip from Pura Vida

    The film made its way to Costa Rica in the 50’s, and by the 70’s the phrase had taken popularity and was making its mark as the nation’s motto, perfectly expressing ticos’ zest for life and positive outlook on every situation.

    If you’ve ever visited Costa Rica, it’s easy to see why this idiom has gained such popularity. Down here it’s pura vida indeed. And if you’ve never visited Costa Rica… Well, what are you waiting for?!

    Pura Vida,


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  • 5 Reasons to Never Feed The Monkeys

    There just seems to be something about little monkeys that makes people want to feed them. We see it happen often, and while we completely understand wanting a group of monkeys to swarm you (hello, perfect Instagram moment), we also understand the negative impact that this has on the little guys. If you aren’t convinced, here are 5 reasons why you should never feed the monkeys:

    • You probably already know that the human hand contains A LOT of bacteria. Luckily for us, most of these bacteria have no harmful effect on us. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for a monkey. When you feed the monkeys, you transfer harmful bacteria that can cause severe illness, or even death for our furry friends.
    • On the flipside, monkeys carry a lot of bacteria that can be harmful to humans. We don’t only care about our cute compadres– we care about you, too! Please keep yourself safe and healthy.
    • Feeding the monkeys can cause them to become dependent on humans and regular feeding times. If regular feeding times are not provided, the monkeys can get aggravated and aggressive towards humans. Nothing can take a moment from darling to destructive quite as quick as an angry capuchin!
    • Monkeys are very active, and need to travel an average of 10 miles a day to maintain a good physical health. Receiving human food causes the monkeys to stay in one area, which is harmful to their physical well-being.
    • It’s illegal. Do we honestly need to give you any other reason? Feeding monkeys is punishable by Costa Rican law… And something tells us your Tulemar rental is a little more cozy than a jail cell.

    So please… Help us keep our primates pleasant and in tip-top shape, and keep yourself healthy and out of trouble!

    Pura Vida,


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