Our friend Mary, in St. Thomas, turned us on to Mono Azul, a funky little hotel in the town of Quepos, almost to Manuel Antonio National Park, one of the big places to go animal watching. We stayed here last time, and both enjoyed the feeling of being in little cabins in the woods - so that was our thought, to head back. We actually managed to find Quepos after a long drive down the coast (with a detour out of Puntarenas, the road was closed, we didn't find out why - the guard or security guy who stopped us tried to explain but his English was as bad as our Spanish, so we just said "de nada, gracias" and turned around).
Mono Azul - the Blue Monkey - isn't exactly an eco-hotel. It IS built in the woods, among the trees, little concrete attached cabins featuring tropical paintings and a lot of blue. The whole place is very quiet and doesn't feel as if it's on a main road. And THE best part - not only do they donate 10% of their profits to the "Save the Squirrel Monkey"program - not only have they worked with school kids to put up bridges for the monkeys to cross the road - they HAVE squirrel monkeys who run through the property, jumping from tree to tree and tree to roof, and then clambering along the rope bridges that have been set up for them. Richard was internetting in the "library," I was in our room, and I realized it was late afternoon - so I went outside and there were maybe 20 or more squirrel monkeys running through (and freezing every time a hawk flew by overhead).
OMG, these are probably the world's cutest monkeys! They are tiny, kind of grey and yellow, with great big eyes and little black tufts at the end of their tails - and while jumping and running to their night time tree, they took a moment to watch me watching them. They're pause and chew on a leaf, lean out of a tree as if to say hello, and then continue scampering along. Just the most adorable little animals short of small kittens, I am not kidding! So I watched the monkeys until they all ran over to their sleeping tree, and I'll look for them in the morning. (The guy working in the garden chatted with me - and I understood that the monkeys are friendly, they come through every evening and morning, he showed me the moms and babies, and he said all sorts of other stuff that I totally didn't understand.)