Aqua Wellness Resort
What We Love
- Private and empty horseshoe-shaped beach
- Yoga and more taught by qualified instructors
- Treehouse-style accommodations, some with decks and private plunge pools
- Healthy meals made from locally-produced ingredients
- Community outreach programs give guests the chance to help locals
- Plenty of outdoor eco-activities
- Treehouses are high up on a hill, and some have beach views
- READ MORE: Find Your Perfect Nicaragua Vacation
What To Know
- Members are required to contact the resort directly and provide contact and flight information so they can coordinate the pickup and adjust for flight delays
- Guests renting a car at the airport should avoid driving at night unless they’re familiar with the area
- Low-key resort with few bells and whistles
- Steep uphill hike from the beach to your treehouse
- More suited to young travelers than families with kids
- A 10 percent service charge per night will be collected at the property upon checkout
- Eco friendly
- Free WiFi
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
Just south of the tiny fishing village of Gigante in the Tola district of Nicaragua (within 30 miles of the Costa Rica border and about a mile from world class surfing spots Manzanillo and Colorado) lies the Aqua Nicaragua Yoga Wellness Retreat & Resort. Twenty-four eco-friendly treehouses dot the verdant jungle hillside of ginger, banana trees and bamboo, connected by lava stone pathways and wooden bridges. It’s the type of escape where yoga and meditation sessions kick off the day and are followed by a treatment or two at the swank spa, with the Pacific Ocean providing the perfect soothing soundtrack to complete the Zen ambience.
Bed and Bath
Set on stilts overlooking the empty beach below, the 24 treehouses are constructed with nature in mind. Think cathedral ceilings with exposed rafters, hardwood floors, natural stone surfaces, teak rainfall showers and indoor/outdoor living spaces. The low-slung platform beds are wrapped in white linens, and violet throw pillows add a pop of color; it’s worth upgrading to a Luxury Suite for a fully equipped kitchen, outdoor Balinese shower and private plunge pool.
The emphasis here is on health and wellness. Book a yoga class (the morning class fronting the Pacific Ocean is free), go for a hike, surf, snorkel or fish. When hunger strikes, the open-air Bromelia restaurant serves a mix of Nicaraguan and American food and takes pride in using products from local farmers and ranchers. The chefs get their produce from a nearby organic farm and the catch of the day from a neighboring fishing village; the menu changes regularly, depending on the bounty of the hotel’s herb garden. After dinner, head to the beach bar for a stiff nightcap with friends and family.
In the Area
In the summer, fishing for mahi mahi, red snapper, rooster fish and mackerel is excellent in this region of Nicaragua. The resort organizes tours to nearby Ometepe Island, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. The island consists of two dramatic volcanic craters rising out of vast Lake Nicaragua, the largest body of freshwater in the country. And if you’re looking to catch a wave, the isolated beach on which the resort sits is a great place to learn; you can simply book surfing lessons with Aqua’s instructors.
How to Get There
I don't usually write reviews but I want to share my amazing experience at Aqua Wellness in Nicaragua vs what political headlines of the day might be. I booked a last minute discount retreat and had a stress free experience including airport pickup in a luxury SUV. The best solo retreat I could imagine.
The setting alone is worth a visit to experience the treehouse feel and walk among the clouds over the green jungle. The sounds of the jungle and crashing waves were hypnotic. If there is a better setting for a yoga retreat I would like to see it. Mandy was the most accommodating yoga instructor by catering to any student request and welcomes all levels of practice (even 1st timers).
In addition to yoga they have fully equipped recreation station including brand new Stand Up Paddle (SUP) boards, kayaks, and snorkeling gear. The private scalloped bay is also the perfect place for all levels or children to explore. I hiked the "Giant's Foot" one morning which provided panoramic views of the Pacific and all he way to Costa Rica. There was an easy hike to the beach next door (Playa Gigante) with some restaurants and bars. Very laid back place with surfers and some tour operators. I didn't book any tours because they were fairly pricey but I did get two massages that were excellent.
I was very impressed with the food and I had 2 meals a day included. The local seafood and fresh seasonal fruit was the highlight. Otherwise the prices were about the same as US. The staff was friendly but shy. I got the chance to meet the management/family and they were so down to earth.
It was definitely not overcrowded, which made it feel like a secluded experience but there may be some offerings not available due to lack of demand.
The week I spent at Aqua was one of the most enjoyable, relaxing vacations I have ever taken. The property is beyond words beautiful, I don't think there is a bad suite to be had. The secluded jungle property and private beach are just stunning. I looked forward to sunsets every night because they were so beautiful. I'm not a big yoga fan but how could you not love yoga in this setting? The restaurant food was also amazing, breakfast was my favourite meal of the day -- yummy smoothie bowls. We booked a day tour to Granda and we were shocked that it was just the 2 of us and a guide all day, so personal and really just a great experience. I hope the country fairs well in their times of unrest, I really hope to visit again.
We were scheduled to travel for a yoga retreat past April and the retreat was cancelled due to the political unrest. The resort promised refund after deducting a service charge. After 5 long months we have not recieved any as promised. Highly recommend avoiding any of their resorts.
This resort is a five star experience at exceptional rates. The treehouses are stunning with personal kitchens, plunge pools and gorgeous rain showers. I really cant express more how beautiful it is. You are in the jungle (monkeys!!!) but with luxurious amenities. I felt like I was staying at private resort all to myself. Other guests were there but you really didn't feel it due to the individual treehouse layout. And a private beach! But the staff!! The moment I walked in I was treated like a VIP. I was upgraded and provided very generous accommodations at very low rates. It was during the time of the civil unrest but whilst at Aqua you it was hard to remember what was going on in the rest of the country. Christian, Nora, Cony and all the front desk staff went out of there way to make me feel at home and safe. The travel back to Managua airport from Aqua during the civil unrest was un-easing to say the least but the staff went over and beyond to make sure I arrived safely. And the yoga!!! Mandy really listens to the group and quickly adapts the course of the class based on everyone's skill levels. I was there for a longer than usual stay and through her instruction I was able to hone my skills from beginner to almost a yogi in no time. Cant wait to go back to yoga more.
I can’t began to explain the amazing time myself, husband and wedding guest had last week at Aqua. From the moment I started planning my wedding, Tania was and angel who made everything easy. Planning a destination wedding from
Another country can be difficult and stressful but Tania made it perfect. Her omg with all the staff made out wedding weekend the most unbelievable weekend of love and fun. It wasn’t just my his and and I who where treated like gold, it was everyone! My wedding guest still cannot stop talking about the amazing time they had. The yoga everyday by Mandy really was an amazing way to relieve stress and get ready for all the fun activities we did. She is simply amazing too and went above and beyond to take my guest on hikes, give amazing massages, etc.
I also want to touch on the photographer and videographer guys. Rodrigo, Oliver and team did a fantastic job at capturing the beauty and perfection of our wedding day. I also received my photos and video in record time and they are pure perfection.
I could go on and on but I encourage everyone to please visit Nicaragua and check out the Aqua because it is the most beautiful and magical place in the world!