The Healing Tropics
As far as I can remember, my summer vacations, holidays, and weekend getaways involved one place: Sámara. For a long time Guanacaste meant my grandmother’s beach-front « rancho » equipped with the basics you needed to enjoy a simple vacation.
Just « around the corner » you'll find Nosara, a small town that we hardly visited. My family kept saying there was nothing to see, and as if we were stuck in the sand, nothing made us leave our beloved Samara.
Despite my family’s belief, for some time I have felt a particular attraction to this place, probably because everybody who goes there falls deeply in love with it, and many even end up staying there.
But I believe what really took me there was a blend between intuition (I’ll tell you more in a bit) and the ideas I had in my mind that someone, or maybe myself, had sold me in a very convincing way.
Anyway… I went.
As some of you may have heard (or know very well), starting May, Costa Rica can get kind of wet (a clear sky will definitely be a bonus during this time of the year), but there is a lot of magic to it. On my way to Nosara, green filled my eyes. My last memory was of a brown, dusty, dry and really hot place — not as lush as how the tropics are usually pictured.
But with the rain, comes the dense vegetation. The green season transforms this place into the very best contemplative scene in which you would have never imagined yourself to be in, and that was just the scenery I needed at this point of my life.
Back to intuition… Since February, I’ve been recovering from a hip surgery that forced me to slow down my pace. Basically by tearing me into pieces, it gave me the chance to heal much more than a couple of bones, it was the opportunity to face hard conversations (or mainly confrontations) with myself.
This weekend felt like the perfect escape to deal with the unfinished business. I stayed at The Harmony Hotel, a place where it seems they have figured out how to incorporate the deepest essence of this paradise.
I won’t give lots of details about Harmony and of what you'll find, because the experience is more about how you feel there rather than the things you'll see. Imagine a workshop for the soul, where you are provided with a variety of tools to stimulate your spirit and disconnect with everyday distractions, so you connect with what really matters: yourself.
As an art exhibition, the Harmony experience has been carefully curated, and even though every detail was well thought out, somehow it all seems natural. A simple design, immersed in nature, offers little trails that lead you to discover new worlds, which all end up meeting in what felt to me as the heart of the place: La Tiendita.
During this weekend, I learned about meaning and purpose, and how these two will always be the heart of any project you decide to initiate. Harmony started as a hunch because Nosara was so meaningful to the owners that they felt the need to create something special there, and each detail that has been added in the past 12 years has a reason of being, it responds to the little needs that have come day to day. I believe the owners never imagined what they have achieved today, not even in their wildest dreams.
It's unfortunate that many times we don't realize our potential to impact and transform the life of others. Most of the times we accept things as they are, but this experience showed me we must dare to go beyond, get out of our comfort zone, and be willing to seek change. These people (and their projects) have become key players in the area, are reshaping cultural behaviours, empowering the community and building up a consciously planned environment, transforming the old Nosara from my family’s memories into a role model community.
Nosara, as other places I’ve visited in the past months, has come at the right time and with the exact spiritual lessons I needed to learn. Costa Rica, my beloved tropics that I was eager to escape from, has given me the elixir to heal, teaching me running away is not how you overcome fear and grief: instead it is where you'll find the answers you were so desperately searching for.