Welcome to Casa Mariposa!
We are glad that you have found this special little place near the end of the road, at the base of the tallest peaks between Guatemala and Colombia, on the edge of the largest protected area in Central America.
We felt lucky when we came across Casa Mariposa in 2007 while on one of our several “humid forest nature get-aways” to Costa Rica. (We are US Pacific North-westerners who were living in the mountains of Arizona at the time). We were looking to get off the beaten track to a quiet place where we could walk in the woods, chat with the locals, and soak up some Pura Vida energy. We just chanced upon this little inn while on our way to hike the wonderland of Cloudbridge Nature Reserve.
The next thing we knew, we found ourselves to be the proud owners of a very funky, very leaky, and relatively unknown hostel at the end of a heck-uvva road. We love a challenge.
Luckily, with John’s “McGyver-like” inclinations, a lot of help from whacky-but-talented carpenter friends, a wise & dedicated staff, and work exchange helpers,(not to mention our very tolerant guests) we’ve kept the place together while slowly and lovingly re-storing and remodeling Casa Mariposa to better withstand the climate and the influx of visitors (repairing the 747 Jumbo Jet while airborne, some say).
The original Casa was built as a simple family house over 45 years ago (long before phones, electricity or even a road got here) and has been a gathering place for travelers on their way to Chirripo and the local wilderness for many years. Four different owners have added on to the house in that time, many of whom still live in the area. Our contribution to the Casa has been a LOT of stonework, foundation and support, water treatment systems, atrium, kitchen/laundry room remodel, garden areas & patios, and the addition of 2 rooms. We strove to maintain the down-to-earth woodsy lodge feel but with more cozy comforts and fewer wildlife-sized openings.
Our aim here is always to cozy up to the forest, the views, the birds and mammals, the sound of the frogs and crickets and rivers. Take a moment to listen. Silence. Rain. Thunder. Rushing rivers. Birds birds birds. Life sounds are everywhere.Clouds lifting out of the trees and into into the afternoon sky. Horses returning from the remote dairy pastures with the daily milk cans. Life is lived at a slower pace but it’s ever-changing and enchanting.
We live, and let live, with the forest creatures, natural systems, our neighbors and visitors. We use only natural cleaners/soaps and routinely appreciate, and then relocate, wayward creatures that are passing through. We ask everyone to help us compost, recycle & re-use. The Casa maintains a high quality grey water treatment system and a micro-hydro plant for heating water is in the works this year.
Ask anyone on our team to point out the alternative building methods in use at the Casa: cans, bottles, eco-bricks–they’re all in here somewhere ; )
We hope that you enjoy this vibrant place. May you wander to your heart’s content, see much, communicate as best you can with the local folk, and return home to Casa Mariposa peaceful and rejuvenated.
Jill Thomas & John Titan