Costa Azul: An Adventure in Paradise
Published Oct 6, 2005 - (Updated Aug 13, 2012)
Tucked away at the end of a long stretch of white sandy beach in the small town of San Pancho, 30 minutes north of Puerto Vallarta, is the hotel/resort Costa Azul. Touted as an adventure resort, Costa Azul offers a wide slice of paradise. The location is truly lovely with the tip of Punta de Mita to the south and a rocky out cropping a few hundred yards down the beach. The sprawling resort encompasses the hillside above and across the street from the main resort area, a large expanse of beachfront property and a big lawn complete with hammocks hanging from the several varieties of palm trees that afford privacy from the beautiful private villas that dot the landscape just beyond the confines of the resort. There is also a large swimming pool with swim-up bar and kiddy pool, generous patio area, a gift shop and restaurant with inside and outside seating.
Guests have the options of several room types from suites to family sized condos and villas to a large luxury hillside villa with private pool, all finely appointed with everything one would expect at a finer resort. Several of the newer rooms are located in compounds just outside the main gate and have spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean from their private decks and pool areas. Walking to the resort grounds from these "Moroccan" style units, guests encounter cobblestone streets lined with the high walled, flowering-vine covered entries to stylish villas giving what can only be described as a charming village feel.
The staff is extremely friendly, courteous, helpful and bilingual. Guests are given an orientation slide show-cocktail reception on the evening of their arrival in order to learn how the all-inclusive resort program works. Each day's activity schedule is printed on a reader board so guests can plan their day accordingly. They can sign up from a long list of adventure trips and activities such as horseback-riding tours, surfing at various locations along the coast, mountain bike rides, sea kayaking, snorkeling, hiking as well as longer excursions.