W debuts in Costa Rica with endemic design

First W hotel opened in Costa Rica, designed by Mister Important Design, W’s in-house design team and Ronald Zurcher Architects.
W Costa Rica is located within a 2,300-acre nature reserve, its design inspired by its surroundings. Photo credit: Marriott International

Marriott International has opened W Costa Rica-Reserva Conchal, marking the brand's debut in the country. It is the second W to open in Central America this year and joins the W Panama.

The hotel is located within a 2,300-acre nature reserve near Tamarindo, a popular surfing spot. Designed by Mister Important Design alongside W Hotels' in-house design team and with Ronald Zurcher Architects, W Costa Rica was inspired by the beaches and jungle that surround the property. Elements of this landscape, as well as the historical roots of the region, are present in various aspects of the property.

The lobby includes an avenue of 2,000 Bursera Simaruba trees (or "Indios Desnudos"), a living fence traditionally grown by local farmers to pen in livestock. The brand's "W" sign is highlighted on the red wall that wraps around the valet area.

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The Living Room lobby has floor-to-ceiling stone and wood panels that line the walls of the hallway, mimicking a marimba instrument. The indoor/outdoor space immerses guests in the Guanacaste Forest with wooden structures towering above the outdoor areas, mirroring the shape of the area's namesake trees. The room also has a tree-like structure that serves as a focal point and is encrusted with 9,000 recycled glass beer bottles that illuminate and create a custom light display. The installation is made of white, blue, green and brown bottles in a pattern inspired by the tails of Costa Rica's hummingbirds.

W Hotels The Store has a rotating curated collection of artisan and regionally inspired items. Located at the far end of the Living Room, a giant wood pillar is engraved to reflect the textures and patterns of the pineapple, one of Costa Rica's economic drivers. The structure frames the elevator leading to the hotel's meeting spaces and restaurant, Latitud 10° Norte.

The Wet Deck (the W pool) celebrates the wheels of Costa Rica's colorful "Carreta Tipica," the ox carts that can be found across the country, with a mosaic interpretation of the mandala-like designs inlaid in the hot tub within the hotel's pool and throughout the interiors of the sunken Wet Bar.

Inspired by nearby Nicoya, Zona Azul Beach Club is the brand's first on-site beach club located on Playa Conchal and features a pool and a restaurant.

Design elements in the 150 guestrooms include mini surf boards, wooden headboards inspired by the Oropendola birds and their woven basket nests, and walls that feature abstract floral murals set against natural wood. Each guestroom has a draft-beer tap filled with local brew and each in-room bar extends onto an outdoor patio. Spanning the walls of the bathroom and vanity space is a Chorotega-style design, showcasing the artistry of Guaitil handcrafted pottery.

The Tree House Suites at W Costa Rica are located in the mangroves on the property and the Extreme Wow Suite (the brand's take on the Presidential Suite) has a large, faceted wood wall, bar, library and entertainment kiosk. The suite also has a wraparound deck with a private pool and a marble surfboard that serves as a dining table. The bed is shaped like a cloud and is positioned to offer guests a view of the private pool and the ocean beyond. The suite can open completely to the deck, creating an indoor/outdoor space.

W Costa Rica also offers the Away Spa Bar. Six private treatment rooms are modeled after butterfly cocoons, a design that pays homage to the country's more than 1,500 species of butterflies.

The hotel has more than 950 square meters (10,226 square feet) of event space and each room has floor-to-ceiling windows, tropical vibes with splashes of color and access to The Lawn, an adjacent outdoor space.

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