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Sol y Mar Restaurant at Hotel Playa Garza

Sol y Mar Restaurant at Hotel Playa Garza

Destination: Nosara

When in Garza, do as the Romans do. Using ingredients imported from Italy and recipes from Rome, Sol y Mar at Hotel Playa Garza kneads Italian passion into a Costa Rican beachside restaurant.

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Wood-fired pizzas with thin crusts like you'd expect on a terrace next to the Trevi Fountain, fresh fish from the Garza Bay across the street, and pasta with homemade cream sauces that melt into the penne pasta— here, you'll never guess you're anywhere but Italy.

Wake up to the roosters crowing at the farm next door, and ask the chef to whip you up a delicious breakfast omelet, $4.50, loaded with juicy ham and mozzarella cheese imported from Italy. Stick around for a bit after breakfast and you may catch the charred scent of grilling veggies, and a glimpse of the chef prepping the dough for lunch and dinner later on.

Watch the Italian chef knead and toss the fresh dough for a wood-fired pizza, $6-13 (depending on toppings), layering it with fresh shrimp from Puntarenas, grilled zucchini, bacon and olive oil; or keep it simple with imported Italian sausage and cheese, or tomato and basil Margherita with garlic oil. A crisp crust and toasty cheese overlay harmonize with whichever toppings you choose — so you can't really go wrong.

After a day of fishing and swimming in the bay at Playa Garza, pull up to the bar for a signature passion fruit martini, $5, stirred with Cacique and sweet lemon.

Stay for some homemade penne pasta, $7, tossed with fresh cream sauce and sweet ham chunks; or an order of yellowfin tuna, $13, cooked in a zesty white wine, garlic and pepper sauce that'll make you want to lick the plate.

Find ultimate Italian romance with a slice of tiramisu, $5, layered with nutty tastes of coffee-soaked ladyfingers, salty mascarpone cheese and coco powder on top.

Ambiance

No shirts and no shoes required — unless you're planning to impress other hotel guests from your dinner table. At night, dance along to VH1 Classic music videos, shown on a projector screen to the side of the relaxed dining space.

Service

Food so delicious and service so intimate, you'll be blown away to learn it’s just a staff of three juggling tasks between the grill, pizza oven and full kitchen.

Prices

Appetizer $5-$6; Entree $6-$16; Pizza $7-$15

Hours

Breakfast 7:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

Lunch noon – 2 p.m.

Dinner 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Sol y Mar Restaurant at Hotel Playa Garza in Pictures