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El Nido (The Nest) - Romantic Tropical Hideaway

17 Reviews
Bedrooms 1
Property type house
Minimum Stay 5 nights


Minimum Stay
5 nights


Photos and Description of this 1 bedroom holiday home in Playa Sardinas II - El Nido - The Nest

One Acre Hilltop Caribbean Style House

Beautiful Caribbean style house surrounded by porches on secluded hilltop acre. Gorgeous panoramic views from every room. With an elevation of 325 feet, from the porch see the Southeast coast of Puerto Rico, all of Vieques, part of St Croix, and parts of St Thomas.

When El Nido property became available we just couldn't pass it up. It is located on the next hill from our home and the views are amazing. We rebuilt the existing house and added the bathroom and surrounding porches. The project was a labor of love. My wife and I built the windows, shutters, railings, and cabinetry and my son made the unique bamboo furniture from Puerto Rican bamboo. They say when you build something by hand it has a heart beat. El Nido definitely has that.

El Nido is entirely off the grid - it uses solar energy and rain water captured in cisterns. Conservation is a must while staying on the property. Culebra is an arid island and grass fires are a danger. There is NO smoking allowed on the property.

The house consists of three pods all connected by a porch surrounding the house. One pod is the kitchen, living room combination. The bedroom with queen-size bed is another pod, and the garden bathroom is the third pod. The bathroom is truly unique with the fourth wall entirely open to view the ocean.

As amazing as the house is, you will spend most of your time on the surrounding porches. The breeze is glorious and views breath taking. Sunrises and sunsets, sailboats in the distance - its hard to leave the porches!

If you LOVE the outdoors - Culebra is the place for you! You can stay a week and visit a different beach every day - all different, unique and gorgeous. You can take a water taxi to Culebrita for the day and explore the light house or just kick back on the beautiful secluded beach. If you like hiking you can explore Carlos Rosario or Brava Beach for the day. For the more adventurous Resaca Beach may be the thing.

If you have never tried kayaking here is your chance. Kayak tours are offered from Tamarindo Beach daily. Snorkel equipment is provided for snorkeling with the turtles.

More Details
  • non smoking only
  • pets not allowed
  • wheelchair inaccessible

Al and Mary Custer
Member since: 2013
Speaks English
Response time:
Within a day
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
23 October, 2016
Call Owner

About Al and Mary Custer

My wife and I first visited Culebra in 1988 and we were hooked! Just could not get enough of Culebra.

We owned a small guest house for several years and finally made Culebra our home in 2001. We truely can not see ourselves living anywhere else. The fabulous beaches, coral reefs and relaxed life style make this island a paradise. The local Culebrenses are wonderful warm people.

Al and Mary Custer purchased this house in 2012

Why Al and Mary Custer chose Culebra

When El Nido property became available we just couldn't pass it up. It is located on the next hill from our home and the views are amazing.

What makes this house unique

The house is on a secluded hilltop on the Southeast side, but is close to town. Punta Soldata beach, which has been totally restored to it's former beauty, is about a mile away.

Guestbook comments from the owner

As Mary refers to on the back cover of "The Story of El Nido", when you build something by hand, it has a heartbeat. The Nest's heartbeat pulses with a warm, powerful, and restorative welcome. We have long waited to visit Culebra. Finding El Nido gave us a calming and beautiful start to daily snorkeling adventures in Culebra. Highlights include the turtles at Tamarindo, Brava's waves, hike to Carlos rosario, and Culebrita (GO and make sure to hiketo the perfectly quiet snorkeling beach and "pools"). The Nest also provided restful, relaxing evenings brightened by a full blue moon, Our years of waiting to come to Culebra were answered in great joy. Thank you al and Mary, for breathing life into this unique special place ... and adding so much to ours. We are abundantly thankful and wish upon every star above the Nest to return.

From our GuestBook
Aug 2015
  • 1 of 7


based on 17 holidaymaker reviews

El Nido (The Nest) - Romantic Tropical Hideaway
average rating of 4.9411764 based on 24 reviews
New Orleans, LA

Harmony in the Caribbean

  • 5 of 5

Staying at El Nido is like a good dream that never really ends. It was the honeymoon destination that my wife and I hoped for and needed.

The Jeep ride up to the Nest is an adventure in itself. You'll feel like Indiana Jones each day you drive around the island and find its beaches, and like royalty every time you make that final climb and park at El Nido.

The layout of the pods and decks on the property is impeccable. It's like a tropical fort naturally built into the hillside. You never tire of the views, or of feeling the breeze come through each room.

Because of that open-air layout, and because the house is self-sustaining, you get the feeling while staying there that you're living in harmony with nature -- that this is the way people should live. You hear crickets, birds, and rustling palm leaves whispering to you each night. Sometimes I'd awake in the middle of the night and go outside just to look again at the Milky Way above, or at the moonlit hills of Culebra and surrounding sea. It was a feeling of tranquility unique to that spot on Earth.

And, of course, the outdoor shower alone is reason enough to stay here.

Thank you Al and Mary for the nest you made and offer to the world. You were excellent hosts and made us feel at home. We would absolutely love to return to El Nido in the years ahead.

  • Review Submitted: Oct 3, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Sep 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you Danny and Lona for your kind review. Sorry your trip was so short and we did not get a chance to converse with you. You were great guests and would love for you to come back again. great luck on your marriage. Al and Mary
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Amazing Trip

  • 5 of 5

We had a fabulous time at El Nido in March. Al and Mary were wonderful hosts. We thoroughly enjoyed the island and especially the house. Private, quiet, and amazing views. We can't wait to go back!

  • Review Submitted: Jul 5, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Mar 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Wonderful Spot

  • 5 of 5

Even though we wanted to explore the island and beaches (and we did), it always felt like just the right thing coming "home." With island breezes and beautiful views, at El Nido we always felt like we were experiencing Culebra fully. My husband loved the couch on the deck facing Vieques. I often sat in one of chairs facing the Ensenada Honda. We loved every minute of our 5 days there and give this spot an unequivocal 5 stars.

  • Review Submitted: Apr 24, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Apr 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Denver, CO

Wonderful Island Home!

  • 5 of 5

My husband and I returned to Culebra for the third time---we love this little island SO much! This was our first time staying in El Nido. It was absolutely wonderful! It is a simple, comfortable space with amazing views. We loved the indoor/outdoor living. Returning from our days in the water--it was our ritual to open everything up and let the breezes relax us. Everything is well thought out. We love being able to explore beaches that are not overbuilt and overcrowded. The color of the water never ceases to amaze me! We definitely want to return to Culebra and stay in El Nido again.

  • Review Submitted: Apr 21, 2015
  • Date of Stay: Apr 2015
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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1 0
Olympic Peninsula, Washington State

This place was perfection for this couple!

  • 5 of 5

Everything about this unique dwelling is wonderful. Perched on a hill with stunning views everywhere you look, the rooms cozy and the outdoor bath was fantastic. Sun rise and coffee on the wrap around porch. Close to town and best beaches, but still feels very private and safe. Owners are terrific and helpful, Mary showed us the turtles at Tamarindo, and Al showed us the pig-on-a-spit wagon. Place is well stocked, and great BBQ. Rustling palms at night lull you to sleep. I highly recommend El Nido for your stay on Culebra.

  • Review Submitted: Mar 24, 2015
  • Date of Stay: Feb 2015
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Eden Prairie, MN

Carla M.

  • 5 of 5

My husband and I spent 2 weeks at El Nido. By far one of best rentals we have stayed at. Al and Mary are great hosts and met us at the airport when we arrived. They even guided us to a local grocery so we could pick up a few essentials. The house is immaculate and stocked with all kinds of little extras from condiments to beauty supplies in the bathroom. We spent most of our time outside on the spacious porches. The outdoor shower was amazing! Wonderful breezes with all of the windows and we hardly used the ceiling fans.

  • Review Submitted: Feb 26, 2015
  • Date of Stay: Feb 2015
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you for your great review of our property. Doug and you are more than welcomed back any time. Have a great Spring and Summer. Al & Mary
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Nearest Airport
3 Miles
Culebra Airport
Nearest Barpub
1.5 Miles
Dingy Dock
Nearest Ferry
2 Miles
Culebra - Fajardo
Nearest Restaurant
1.5 Miles
Dingy Dock
Nearest Beach
1 Miles
Playa Soldado
Car: necessary

Snorkel with the turtles from Tamarindo beach. Take a kayak tour to Luis Pena. Hike to Brava Beach for the day. Visit Flamenco Beach where the sand is like powder. Get a water taxi to Culebrita and see one of the oldest lighthouse in the Caribbean. Tortuga Beach on Culebrita is the best beach in Puerto Rico.


Prices & Availability

Prices for this holiday house in Playa Sardinas II, Puerto Rico

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
Convert Currency
Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event Price
11 Feb 2016 - 9 Aug 2017
5 night minimum stay
for 5 nights
My Standard Rate
5 night minimum stay
for 5 nights

Additional pricing information

Tax Rate 8.0%

Rates listed are for double occupancy. Maximum number of guests is 2 adults.

A minimum one-week stay during holiday periods may apply.
40% deposit on booking, balance due 30 days prior to arrival.
Payments made by check.

Deposits are non-refundable for less than 60 days notice unless booked period is re-rented.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

Please ask the owner or check their rental agreement when booking the property.
Enter dates for accurate pricing
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Available arrival


Accommodation and facilities for this holiday house in Playa Sardinas II, Puerto Rico

Property Type:
  • house
  • Self-catering
Floor Area:
  • 560 sq. ft.
Location Type:
  • city centre ...
  • Ocean View ...
  • rural ...
  • Water View
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Air Conditioning ...
  • Hair Dryer
  • Internet ...
  • Linens Provided ...
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking
  • Towels Provided ...
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave ...
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Hob ...
  • Toaster
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 4 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom - Toilet , Shower Enclosure
  • Huge garden shower with entire wall open for fabulous views of Vieques, Southeastern Puerto Rico, and stars at night. Your privacy is guaranteed with large planters on the outside floor.
  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 2
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 Large Double Bed
  • Sleep in luxury on custom made queen size bamboo bed. Ceiling fan and wardrobe. Recline with a good book and wonderful ocean view of neighboring island Vieques.
  • Television ...
  • Terrace ...
  • Garden ...
  • Barbecue ...
  • non smoking only ...
  • pets not allowed
  • wheelchair inaccessible
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • library
  • marina
  • museums
  • playground
  • recreation centre
  • restaurants
Leisure Activities:
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • Boating
  • eco tourism
  • photography
  • scenic drives
  • Shelling
  • Shopping
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • whale watching
  • Wildlife Viewing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • laundrette - serviced
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • deepsea fishing
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • hiking
  • jet skiing
  • Kayaking
  • pier fishing
  • sailing
  • diving
  • snorkelling
  • Snorkeling/Diving
  • bay fishing
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • water skiing
Beach bag provided and already stocked with beach towels. Beach chairs and cooler provided for your island adventures.

Partner Offers

Portable wifi hotspot

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