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Dec 14, 2018 — Dec 14, 2018  | 
Night Nights 2 Adults

Q&As

10 Questions: Federico Gurdián, Casa Chameleon Las Catalinas

In our General Manager series, we catch up with heads of hotels for personal stories and insider perspective. This week, we get to know Federico Gurdián of Casa Chameleon Las Catalinas in Costa Rica.

Q Best hotel room at the property?
A

The Villa Suite because it boasts the best views, the most privacy and the largest private plunge pool.

Q The hotel’s most interesting detail, service or historical tidbit?
A

For me, it’s the bar and restaurant, which offer the best views of the area, without a doubt. Add to this, the cocktails and craft beers offered all specially chosen and designed to consider local Costa Rican ingredients, which are rarely used. Then, jump to dinner in the restaurant to take in a view of the moon reflecting on the ocean and interact with our cooks in the open-air kitchen serving local cuisine with a flare.

The Villa Suite because it boasts the best views, the most privacy and the largest private plunge pool.
Q Favorite drink at the nearest bar?
A

Agua de Sapo at Sentido Norte Restaurant consists of traditional Costa Rican Guaro, which is made out of sugar cane. Mixed with lime juice, tapa de dulce [traditional Costa Rican raw brown sugar] and soda water.

Villa Interior
Q Favorite dish at the nearest restaurant?
A

The grilled octopus and mussels at Sentido Norte. Octopus is grilled and sautéed in a white wine reduction with mussels, roasted garlic and annatto seed oil. It’s served with homemade crostini on the side to dip in the delicious sauce.

Q The neighborhood shop or boutique you love?
A

Pura Vida Ride is right on Dantita beach located five minutes from the hotel. There you’ll find all that you need to have a full day of adventure on the beach, including standup paddle boards, kayaks, snorkeling gear and mountain bike rentals. Also, they offer great coffee and delicious locally-made gelato to enjoy after a day full of exercise and adventure. They are located right at the entrance of the trails that extend over 20km where guests can hike, jog or bike.

Q Best touristy activity or outing to do in your city?
A

The Catamaran Sunset Tour departs early afternoon and cruises through the bay of Potrero, Danta and Dantita and stops at a private beach with calm waters perfect for snorkeling and kayaking. It then sails off to the bay of Flamingo, and the sun sets on your way there.

Q Best non-touristy activity or outing to do in your city?
A

Hike for 2.5 hours through the trails of Las Catalinas to reach a private beach, where you’ll be greeted with a cold beer, white wine or rosé, and enjoy lunch with no one around.

Q Outside the lobby, what’s your hobby?
A

Surfing. Costa Rica is renowned for its surf and we are blessed to have world-class waves 20 minutes from the hotel. I enjoy it greatly, as it helps me keep fit and clears my mind.

Villa Interior
Q Your last holiday destination?
A

Attend a wedding with my family in the southern part of Italy. We all met in Rome and rented cars there. We did a road trip from there where we had the chance to stay for one night in Pompeii, stop by Napoli—where I ate the best pizza of my life—then to Martino. We all stayed at a “masseria,” which is like a farm, where they had huge olive plantations and a castle-like house built in 1850. We did wine tours and tastings, visited other nearby towns, and enjoyed a full-on Italian wedding.

Q Your next holiday destination, planned or wished?
A

My next holiday is planned for September. I’m heading with my girlfriends family to Yosemite National Park where we rented RVs to explore the park for seven days. We’re nature lovers so we’re really looking forward to this trip.