Bahía del Sol - A Unique Potrero Wedding Destination
While searching for wedding venues in Guanacaste for our Most Unique Wedding Destinations in Costa Rica article, we came across Bahía del Sol Hotel, a great location to tie the knot on the beach. At the hotel, we interviewed Guido Foltran, the hotel’s manager, and Larissa Banting, their very experienced wedding planner, and were given an exhaustive tour of the hotel, access to the Honeymoon Suite and a standard suite, in addition to the various sites for wedding ceremonies, receptions, and dinners. If looking for a unique place for an unforgettable Costa Rica beach wedding, Bahía del Sol Hotel is an excellent option.
LOCATION AND TRANSPORTATION
Bahía del Sol Hotel is a beachfront hotel located in Potrero, Guanacaste. The hotel offers round-trip transportation to Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport in Liberia (LIR), which is a bit more than a 1-hour drive. Another option is to fly in to Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San Jose, which is between a 4-6 hour drive depending on the route and traffic. If arriving in SJO, you can charter a short regional flight to LIR from where you can use the ground transportation offered by the hotel.
REPUTATION, HISTORY & DESIGN
Bahía del Sol Hotel has a rating of 4-Stars and has been hosting beach destination weddings in Costa Rica for 23 years. The hotel’s reception building, accommodations, restaurant, and pool are located about 100 feet from where the beach's shorline. Between the beach and the buildings, there are two large lawns and a wood pavilion for open-air and covered wedding day events. The guest rooms and other structures have a rustic, ranch-type feel and design, and are surrounded by and imbedded in a lush tropical garden.
Why Bahía del Sol Hotel is UNIQUE
Its direct access to the beach, its beautiful, unobstructed views of the Pacific Ocean and sunsets, its spacious beachfront lawns, its dark beach sand are just a handful of reasons why Bahía del Sol Hotel is unique. Despite being a tourist destination, Potrero limited its development thereby preserving its local culture and natural beauty, making the hotel, its surroundings, and the experience guests have in the town more unique. Add to this its magnificent botanical garden, the dark beach sand that contrasts with the blue water and sky, its outstanding customer service, and its elegant and delicious dishes and you have a remarkable wedding destination and experience.
BEST TIME FOR YOUR Bahía del Sol WEDDING
In planning a destination wedding, there are many things to take into consideration to make sure your wedding day is a success. The weather, climate, and knowing when the busy and slow seasons are, are two factors that can make or break your big day.
Guanacaste - the province in which Potrero is located - is the driest and hottest province in Costa Rica, especially on and near the Pacific Coast. The dry season in Potrero is from November to late may. February and March are the driest months and are the best times to get married at Bahía del Sol, according to Mr. Foltran. The wet season runs from late may to November with the most precipitation in August through October.
BUSY / SLOW SEASONS
The high season kicks off in early December, peaks around February, and tapers off around late April. The busy season is when Costa Rica experiences an influx of tourists, namely to its beaches, and is when Costa Ricans tend to go on vacation, further increasing the number of people in tourists destinations. Consequently, the cost of airfare, accommodations, and services increase and the availability of rooms decreases. Whenever you plan to tie the knot in Costa Rica, it will be a great experience in a beautiful country.
WEDDING PLANNING SERVICES & PROVIDERS
Bahía del Sol Hotel provides in-house wedding planning services. Larissa Banting, their wedding organizer who is from the United States, speaks fluent English and will help you design your dream Costa Rica beach wedding. Upon request, she will send you their wedding packages and connect you with their recommended wedding day providers, providing you a list of the florists, stylists, officiants, entertainment providers, decorators, videographers, and photographers they work with on a regular basis.
BRIDAL PREPARATION SERVICES
Have your makeup done, hair styled, pedicure and manicure all done in your room or in the spa on your wedding day. The choice is yours. Bahía del Sol Hotel will accommodate all of your wedding day preparation wherever you are most comfortable.
WEDDING CEREMONIES – TYPES AND SIZES
Whether eloping, having a small intimate beach ceremony or a wedding-day bash with 250 guests, Bahía del Sol Hotel can meet all of your wedding day needs and can accommodate any type of wedding, from a traditional Catholic ceremony, a civil ceremony, a secular wedding to an international wedding. There is nothing more important to Larissa Banting and Bahía del Sol Hotel than to make your dream wedding a reality, whatever it may be.
Bahía del Sol Hotel has 35 guest rooms – their Honeymoon Suite or King Sun Suite, Standard Suite, Deluxe Superior, Family Suite, Deluxe Room, and Standard Rooms that come with either1 or 2 queen beds – and can comfortably accommodate up to 100 of your guests. All their tastefully designed and decorated guest rooms are equipped with air-conditioning, which is a must when preparing for your wedding day, have either a beach and garden view or a views of their unique botanical gardens. While at the resort, we had the opportunity to take photos of a honeymoon suite and a standard suite, which will give you a good idea of the design and quality of the rooms we were unable to photograph.
1. Honeymoon Suite – King Sun Suite
Their Honeymoon Suite, also known as the King Sun Suite, is a wonderful and romantic suite for your wedding night and day after given its privacy and that it faces the beach, giving you and your beloved an impressive view of the Pacific Ocean. It comes with an artisan king size bed made of solid wood, an ample bathroom and shower with elegant finishings, a private patio with a hot tub, a private waterfront terrace bordered by their tropical garden near the pool.
2. Standard Suite
Your guests will likewise find comfort, tranquility, and pleasant views in Bahía del Sol’s Standard Suite. Equipped with a queen-sized bed, a full kitchen, a living room, and a breakfast bar among other amenities, this suite is quite comfortable and is just a short walk through a lush botanical garden from Potrero beach and the hotel’s pool.
LOCATIONS – Ceremonies, Dinners, & Receptions
If eloping, having a small intimate ceremony or a large all-day wedding with hundreds of guests, Bahía del Sol Hotel has three beautiful sites for your ceremony, reception, and dinner, all of which have a marvelous view of Potrero beach and the Pacific Ocean. The location you choose will depend on the size of your wedding party and the time of year you decide to tie the knot.
1. Palapas Pavilion – Ceremonies & Receptions
Palapas Pavilion is primarily used for wedding receptions, mainly for the buffet food service for large weddings whose ceremony takes place on the lawn or beach. It can also accommodate wedding ceremonies consisting of between 70-80 guests, which may be a must if getting married during the rainy season. Palapas is a rustic open-walled wood structure with a thatched roof supported by solid wood columns with beautiful wood floors that is located on the lawn area about 100 feet from the beach, ensuring you and yours guest amazing views.
On the day of our photo session, a martial arts retreat was taking place, and Palapas was where they held classes, hence the mats.
2. Lawn Area – Ceremonies & Receptions
The spacious lawn located between Palapas Pavilion and the beach is an ideal site for wedding ceremonies and receptions of up to 250 guests. Its openness, tropical vibe, and its views of the beach, ocean, and rainforest will make your wedding day a day to remember.
3. Beach - Ceremonies
The marvelous stretch of beach at Bahía del Sol's footsteps is a great venue for a romantic wedding ceremony of up to 250 guests, which is the capacity of the wedding reception site. Its proximity to the ocean will ensure you hear the crashing of waves as you say "I do". If planning a beach ceremony, it is advisable to consult Ms. Banting quite a bit in advance to ensure your ceremony is planned in accordance with the tides, which can reduce the size of the beach dramatically and limit the number of guests.
Nasu, Bahía del Sol Hotel's gourmet restaurant and bar, is where you can enjoy delicious internationally-inspired cuisine as well as tropical drinks from its submerged bar before and after your wedding day. Similar to Palapa, Nasu Restaurant is a rustic structure with wood columns supporting a thatched roof whose lack of walls allow for unobstructed beach and ocean views.
Before and after your wedding day, there are many activities and natural wonderes at Bahía del Sol Hotel, in Potrero, and in Costa Rica that will keep you entertained, in awe, and never bored.
AT Bahía del Sol
At the hotel, you can ride jet skis, charter a catamaran, go kayaking, paddle boarding, and snorkeling, or you can go surfing or horseback riding on a neighboring beach.
Beyond the Hotel
The hotel can organize excursions to Rincón de la Vieja Volano National Park where you can see a wide variety of exotic flora and fauna, soak or swim in thermal pools, sit in a hot mud pool, take in marvelous views of its volcano and waterfalls, and much more. You can also go horseback riding in inland as well as visit Palo Verde National Park where you can take a boat tour during which you will see a wide variety of exotic birds and other animals. Another option among many others is taking a trip to a coffee plantation in Monte Verde.
Planning a destination wedding can be a bit stressful, as can hours and hours of international travel, followed by what may be even more hours of waiting and traveling until you finally reach Bahía del Sol Hotel. Their massage therapists and spa technicians will make it a distant memory with their relaxing massages and spa treatments, leaving you floating on a cloud for your wedding day.
Bahía del Sol Hotel is a tranquil tropical getaway and an ideal venue for a Costa Rica beach wedding. Its tropical botanical garden adds a unique richness to the area surrounding its guest rooms, its expansive lawn area is a serene space to pass the time while taking in views of the beach and ocean as a sea breeze passes through your hair, and the gourmet dishes served at Nasu Restaurant will tantalize your taste buds as the friendly staff tend to your every need and whim.