Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The Former Club Barracuda - 5-1-2012

Barracuda is a former dance club I visited several times on my last trip through Samara. The club even had a mechanical bull, which I never rode. Rosa, one of Brian's friends, mentioned that it's not a club anymore, but is still a cool place to hang out. Fresh from my closure regarding Irish Jane, and feeling better about the Canadians' recent departures (I'll do a separate post for them; they were awesome), I resolved to explore the former club on Saturday the 28th.

Forest path to Barracuda in Playa Samara, Costa Rica
The path to Barracuda breaks off from the main road just outside of town; it's just an unmarked grass path that turns upward sharply on the left side of the road as you leave town. I missed it the first time, went back into town and got correct directions from a helpful hotelier, Julie, at the Tico Adventure Lodge. I spotted the grass path the second time and took it. The sounds of the road and town faded into silence beneath a green canopy. Only the sound of my feet on gravel and grass broke the morning silence. I followed the path up and spotted the gate.

A concrete path led further up past several small, white cabinas on my left to the former dance club. It was quiet, the cabinas empty. An older blond woman came out to welcome me. In quickly-spoken Spanish, I think she asked me if I wanted to enjoy the view or swim in the pool. I wanted neither but didn't know what to say. “Cerveza?” she smiled, and I agreed. I could use a beer after that climb. She led me into the outer patio, a white concrete area with shade tents, comfy wood and canvas sunning chairs and a small wading pool.

Cabana at Barracuda in Playa Samara, Costa Rica
The club was built on a cliff; I could see all of Playa Samara from Barracuda's patio. Once, the area next to a big shade tent opened into the club. Now, though, a large bar with a sign reading “Beach Club” behind it sat in front of a wall that once led to a dance floor. "Pilsen? Imperial?" the helpful woman asked with a smile.“Imperial,” I answered. She went in the back and came out with a can. I paid her $2.00, thanked her and went exploring upstairs.

Pacific Ocean from Barracuda in Playa Samara, Costa Rica
Three years ago, the upstairs floor led back into the club's second floor. Today, a back wall sealed off the upper deck, preventing entrance to whatever happened to the rest of the club. The view, though, was still spectacular. Four tables with stools were spread across the vast, rectangular floor, with chest-high glass preventing people from falling over to the concrete patio and airy tents below. A high ceiling left plenty of space for the morning breeze. I had the entire floor to myself as I admired my 200 degree view.

Downtown Playa Samara, Costa Rica
My far left view was green trees and green hills. Just to the right, I could see the entire curve of Playa Samara with Punta Islita just off shore. Continuing right, I could see Playa Samara spread out before me on land, and white caps crashing against the coral reef offshore. Small figures walked or bicycled the straight main street leading to the beach. Further right, I could see the tide pools at the far end of Playa Samara, where the beached curved back out to the sea and ended. To the extreme right, I could see another cove open up with blue ocean beyond it – Playa Buena Vista. The views were stunning, and enhanced further by the springtime sun.

Not many people in Samara know about Barracuda now that it is a series of cabinas instead of a rowdy bar, but definitely make the hike up to the former club. And bring your camera; you won't be sorry.

No comments:

Post a Comment