costa rica destination wedding resort

If you’re looking for the perfect destination wedding venue or honeymoon resort look no further than the luxury boutique resort Casa Chameleon in Mal Pais, Costa Rica! I recently had the opportunity to visit this stunning gem of a hotel and to be frank I was blown away. Not just by Casa Chameleon, but by Costa Rica – the food, the people, the scenery, the ease of travel, and the value. Costa Rica was simply incredible and Casa Chameleon made it so!

GETTING THERE: Flights to Costa Rica were comparatively cheap. My boyfriend and I booked ours on American Airlines for around $160 round trip from Miami to Costa Rica’s capital San José. From there we rented a car (make sure you get a four-wheel drive) and drove to Mal Pais. The drive was gorgeous (Costa Rica gives a whole new meaning to the word ‘green’) and you take a ferry over to the Nicoya Peninsula. Mal Pais is a funky little surfer town tucked into the jungles on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast and well worth exploring!

Costa Rica destination wedding and honeymoon venue | Casa Chameleon Mal Pais Canopy tour Costa Rica

ARRIVING: Upon arrival you walk through saloon-style swinging wood doors and follow a little path surrounded by tropical flowers and emerald palm fronds to the reception area which is a wow since the view is out of this world! The resort’s swimming pool (the community one if you feel like being social since every villa has it’s own) looks out on a stunning vista of Costa Rica’s jungles and the Pacific Ocean. 

Costa Rica destination wedding and honeymoon venue | Casa Chameleon Mal Pais

ROOM: Calling the rooms at Casa Chameleon Mal Pais ‘rooms’ is misleading since they’re actually villas and villa suites. It’s an intimate resort (which makes it perfect for a destination wedding – you’ll have the run of the place!) and each villa situated in a private part of the jungle. The first villa suite we stayed in was called Villa Estrella and oh my gosh was it stunning. A private infinity edge pool, a chicly-appointed living room, gorgeous wood furniture with Balinese influences, large outdoor patio, lounge chairs that literally rested in the water, and two showers – one indoors and one out!

The second villa suite we staying in was called Villa Ultra and it was just as jaw-dropping as the first, except instead of an outdoor shower it had a giant natural-stone bathtub, huge kitchen, vaulted ceilings, views for miles, teak floors, and a deeper pool. I’d be hard pressed to tell you which is my favorite – they were both perfection!

Costa Rica destination wedding and honeymoon venue | Casa Chameleon Mal Pais

DINING: We ate breakfast every day at the hotel not only because it is included in the cost of your stay but given a choice we wouldn’t have breakfasted anywhere else! The fruit juices and fruit plates were as fresh as I’ve ever tasted and you breakfast on an upper patio so the view is mind-boggling. The first night we arrived we had dinner at the resort and loved every second of it from the wine service to the friendly staff, meeting the chef, and the amazing locally sourced foods.

Costa Rica destination wedding and honeymoon venue | Casa Chameleon Mal Pais Costa Rica destination wedding and honeymoon venue | Casa Chameleon Mal Pais

WEDDINGS: Needless to say, Casa Chameleon is perfect for a destination wedding in Costa Rica. They handcraft your experience so your wedding will be truly unique, and truly you. Not only is the property beyond beautiful and the food amazing, but they have TWO other properties. Think about it – you could get married in one and honeymoon in the other!

We had the opportunity to take a look at the Ocio Villas and if you’re seeking a true luxury experience then this is the way to go. I’m talking mansions in the jungle, a helipad, and the most amazing pool you’ll ever lay eyes on. Their third property is a little north on the Nicoya Peninsula (totally drive-able in half a day) and a the newest addition to their portfolio – Las Catalinas.

Costa Rica destination wedding and honeymoon venue | Casa Chameleon Mal Pais

ADVENTURE: There is plenty to do in Mal Pais for adventurous spirits! It’s known as a surf town and the beach goes for miles and there are plenty of hikes, nature reserves, standup paddle-boarding, scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing, yoga, deep-sea fishing, ATV adventures, waterfalls, and countless other experiences. The one thing we chose to do (I know I said one and to be fair… the room was so gorgeous it was really hard to leave that kind of luxury) was a canopy tour. It was my first time zip-lining and it was a blast! I can’t wait to do it again.

The town of Mal Pais is a charmer set along a dirt road between the beach and the jungle (can you imagine anything more idyllic?!) and has several eateries worth trying. Our favorites were The Bakery which specializes in desserts and Burger Rancho. There were also several sushi restaurants but they opened the day after we were leaving the area – but when we go back I’m definitely going to check them out. 

Costa Rica destination wedding and honeymoon venue | Casa Chameleon Mal Pais

OVERALL: I definitely recommend Casa Chameleon for either your destination wedding and/or your honeymoon. We had three nights / four days there Mal Pais and it was enough time to get a taste of what it’s like, but the problem is though that once you leave you also leave a part of your heart there. I miss the quirkiness of the surf town and I REALLY miss the villa suites we had the pleasure to stay in!

* While Casa Chameleon covered our accommodations, I am not required to do anything in return. This review is a good one because I would never bother to write about or promote a company or experience I didn’t care for. All opinions are my own.

About Sara Burnett

Editor of Burnett's Boards, which she founded to showcase global creativity in the wedding industry. Sara currently lives out of a suitcase while island hopping the Caribbean and beyond. Learn More // Follow on Instagram.