Encantada is the physical expression of a dream for us. In 2014, we uprooted ourselves from our comfortable and stable lives in LA, California and moved to Costa Rica. Since then, we have been the proud owners of this unique and beautiful hotel.
Before taking the step that changed our lives completely, we had been married for nine years, had a nice home in Venice Beach, and successful careers.
Our busy lives and the California pace of life left us with little time to enjoy each other’s company, our two dogs, and the fruits of our efforts and hard work. Although we were satisfied with our lives, it was not fulfilling.
We knew we needed a lifestyle change, and so we took a trip to Costa Rica to check out some property we had purchased years back.
We spent three weeks wandering around Costa Rica, living and experiencing the beauty and purity it offered. The stark contrast in life from LA to Costa Rica appealed to us. The Pura Vida pace of life was what we needed. We fell in love quickly with the lush country, the friendly people, and the joy that seemed to inundate every aspect of life in Costa Rica.
Near the end of our trip, we stumbled upon Encantada.
And Encantada was just that… enchanting. There was something about the place, its energy and surroundings that sparked an idea for us. Maybe this place would be the catalyst for change. Could we be hoteliers?
"Encantada was just that… enchanting. There was something about the place, its energy and surroundings that sparked an idea for us."
-Nome Lakin, Owner
Thy decision was made. We had no experience running a hotel, nor did we know where to begin, but everything seemed to fall into place. We sold our house in Venice, CA in 2 weeks and purchased Encantada in June 2013. We began to pack up our entire lives in our rental house in Venice, spending 14 months downsizing our lives—from material possessions to our jobs. In a series of garage sales, we sold everything that we wouldn’t be taking into our new lives. Finally, on August 13th, 2014, we left our jobs, packed the rest of our belongings, and moved to Costa Rica with our dogs, Dime and Koal.
As we settled into our new home country and new jobs, we struggled with language barriers, different customs, different schedules and overall culture shock. We were now running a hotel, and had never done anything like it in our lives. While we had been a successful owner of an IT consulting company, and a top senior sales executive-- running a hotel required a different mindset and set of skills. The pura vida life we fell in love with when visiting felt different now-- running the hotel had its own pace of life.
We poured our hearts into our work and into Encantada. We were determined to add to the unique energy that we felt from the space when we had first seen this magical place. The Encantada you see today did not come from luck—it came from the hard work of two people with a passion and a dream. Every aspect of Encantada was created with special attention to detail. Everything was planned with love and a dream to make the most beautiful spot on the beach—for guests to feel at home away from home. Encantada is constantly evolving. We work hard to add and modify each cabina and the grounds to keep everything modern and functional, but preserve its original beauty and uniqueness. The work did not come easy, but after years of learning to adapt, we feel we have rediscovered the pura vida essence that had originally drawn us to Costa Rica—and we want to share it with you.
Encantada is the embodiment of the pura vida spirit for us. Encantada’s original energy shines brighter now, and is simple, rustic, and clean with all the comforts of home. We continue to work alongside our wonderful staff in whatever needs to be done. We are hands on in almost every aspect, and work to ensure that the hotel lives up to our dream’s expectations.
We invite you to come experience the dream for yourselves.