For an actor whose roles and personal life have, occasionally, been a bit over the top, this is a surprisingly tucked-away jungle retreat. It’s on Playa Barrigona in Costa Rica, on a stretch of what looks like untouched coastline. So bring along both your sunscreen and bug spray, imagine a few howler monkeys rustling in the trees, and join me at Mel Gibson’s $31.5 million tropical estate.
Playa Barrigona curves along the Pacific on Costa Rica’s northwestern coast, in the middle of the verdant Nicoya peninsula. Though it looks miles from anywhere, it’s actually between the towns of Samara and Nosara, and the latter even has a small airport, plus a thriving expat community.
The estate includes three homes and a total of 11 bedrooms, but the main courtyard is lush and welcoming, with open-air hallways and large windows begging to be thrown open. I’m not sure how each house has the “full air-conditioning” the listing promises if half the rooms are open-air, but if you can afford to buy the estate, you can probably afford to cool it.
Inside, the living spaces are just as open and airy, with high wooden ceilings, pale tile floors and warm white stucco walls. I’m not crazy about the resort-esque orange and green upholstery, but it is cheery, and probably beach sand-resistant.
Dine indoors under a beamed ceiling, surrounded by old world dark wood furnishings, or outdoors, on a terrace overlooking the jungle. There are ocean views from some of the second-storey bedrooms, though, and much of the main floor is open to the pool. (Apparently, the actual beach is better suited to surfing than casual swimming.)
Bedrooms are done up in the same casual, sort-of Mediterranean style. Again, between the matching wrought iron furniture and striped chair fabric, this looks a bit like a room at a tropical resort, but I wouldn’t complain about vacationing here.
What do you think? Would a stay in the jungle give you a taste of freedom?
1-5. Christie’s International Real Estate