If you are looking to really escape from it all and be in a spectacular ocean front location, Casa El Refugio is the getaway spot for you. Only a short 7 mile oceanside drive north from the services and amentities of Los Barriles, Casa El Refugio is in a very unique setting all by itself right on the Sea of Cortez. This a great spot for snorkeling, SUP, kayaking, fishing, and even whale spotting all from the front porch. You can choose to be as connected to modern technology as you want to be. High speed Wi-Fi, great cellular reception, and HD television programming all at your disposal.
Casa El Refugio is a new construction completed in 2013. The construction technique was created with the concept of using as many sustainable and locally produced building materials as possible. The primary building material is COB. COB is a mix of clay, sand, straw, and water. COB is very much like adobe but instead of forming the clay mixture into bricks, the mixture is shaped and compacted on site to directly form the walls. This creates a large monolithic structure that has incredible strength and insulation characteristics. All exterior walls are at least 2 feet thick of solid material. Other local materials of note include the gorgeous solid rock foundation and bricks which were individually hand shaped and fired. All doors, cabinets, and drawers are made from a beautiful local mountain hardwood called Palo Chino. The beams in the fully enclosed courtyard are another type of local mountain hardwood.
The house design was developed from the concept of the Hacienda. It has a fortress type appearance from the exterior but when the threshold is passed, the feeling becomes warm and inviting. All rooms are accessed from the central, fully enclosed courtyard. The courtyard has beautiful iron work trellis and columns that support a shade covering of wooden beams. A wall fountain adds a feeling of vitality to the courtyard. When passing from the courtyard into the main part of the house a panorama of the Sea of Cortez takes over. The large central room contains the entertainment area, dining area, and kitchen. The ocean side is constructed using Nana Walls which are glass wall panels that fold out so the entire front of the house is open for inside/outside living. The master suite is to the right of the main room and fronts the Sea of Cortez as well.
The kitchen is very large and done with rustic brick work and red granite counters. A large pantry is attached to the kitchen. It is a function first kitchen that is very easy to work in.
The entertainment area has a 60 inch flat screen HD plasma TV, a BlueRay DVD player, surround sound home theater system, and Dish Network HD programming packages. The sound system also has remote speakers and controls located in each room, the courtyard, and the front patio.
The dining area has a 9' solid mesquite dining table with 8 matching chairs
The front patio overlooking the Sea of Cortez has ample seating, a propane BBQ, a wood BBQ/fire box, and a hot tub/spa capable of holding up to 6 people
The master suite has a large walk in closet and shower with two onyx sinks set in the granite counter.
The two guest bedrooms share a Jack and Jill bathroom with a large shower and a travertine sink set in a granite counter. Solid mesquite armoires are in each of the guest bedrooms.
The house is air conditioned throughout.
There is a 10KW solar panel array on the roof that is connected to the local power grid. Using this grid tie back system means virtually all the electricity used is generated on site using solar technology.
High Speed Wi-Fi internet and excellent cellular phone service are also present.
My wife Kim and I have lived in Los Barriles for 13 years and absolutely love it here. We are both Kite Boarders and I also enjoy the great fishing we have here. Kim is very active in the local community and is the acupuncturist at the Spa de Cortez
Rick Tyrer purchased this house in 2013
We purchased the lot the house sits on in 2007 because it is in such a beautiful and unique setting. We decided to start building in 2011. We broke ground late that year and have just finished construction in March of 2013
The peaceful isolation says it all. No other houses around, just the beautiful Sea of Cortez as far as you can see.
We spent a week at the house and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The ocean views are unbeatable. We woke to the sound of manta rays slapping the water, breathtaking sunrises and perfect temperatures.
The beach is very rocky and if the wind is up it is hard to get in. If it is calm there is easy access to SUP, kayaking, snorkeling, or just swimming. The equipment at the house for these activities is fair, the boards work but are roughed up a bit, the kayaks are leaky. Bring your own gear if you can or if these activities are important to you.
The road out to the house is quite bumpy so make sure you get a good vehicle. It is quite far from the hustle and bustle of town which was what we were looking for but if you want to be in the thick of the night life just know that you will have a long drive home.
Overall, we loved the house, location, views, and Rick was very accommodating.
Our family of four adults stayed over Christmas week and loved it. The house is exactly as pictured, or perhaps the pictures do not really do it justice. It is in a somewhat remote (about 20 minutes from town via dirt road) but still accessible location. The house is really well-equipped with everything needed for relaxing, exploring the local area and doing as much cooking as you want. We really enjoyed the kayaks and SOPs and used them to paddle to the nearby sandy beaches and snorkeling areas almost every day. We had one cool day and used it to hike up into a nearby arroyo to enjoy the desert flowers, smells and sounds. Rick and Kim are excellent hosts...they love this house and it shows. We almost never go back to the same places...on the theory that the world is a big place and has more places to go than we will ever be able to fit in. But we have already booked for next year!
This is paradise, in the whole 9 nights we only saw one other group of people on "our" beach. The house is beautiful, well equipped and totally delightful. All the equipment is excellent and Rick is a fabulous accommodating host. We had the wonderful cleaning lady , cook for us three of our nights which was such a treat. I'm coming back another time !!
The house is better than the pictures, tastefully decorated, right on the beach, and 1mile from hotel punta pescadero. The living space & master BR are indoor/outdoor with windows that slide fully open to let in the nice sea breeze. The kitchen is totally equipped and welcomes home cooked meals with friends and family. At 4200sqft, the house is very large and can easily accommodate 7-8 people. The home is very renter friendly with just about everything you could need for a wonderful week including SUPs, towels, Kayaks, snorkel gear, fishing rod, spear gun, gas grill and more. Two things to note, and they are mentioned in other reviews: its about 20m outside of Barriles so rent a SUV (sedan will do, but you'll need to drive slow) and secondly, buy water/reef shoes which will make launching kayaks and paddle boards much easier. A short 5m paddle from the house north, you'll find a white sand beach that is totally secluded (literally no one there) with awesome snorkeling on the point. And having dinner/lunch at hotel punta pescadero is a must, they make a terrific margarita and have great food. Rick (the owner) was totally accommodating - I would love to come back.
The house and location are excellent. The house includes every convenience to make your stay fun and comfortable - kitchen, laundry, WI-FI, satellite TV. The house is a beautiful hacienda-style. The master bedroom is set off from the other two, making for excellent privacy. The location is secluded and tranquil. There is good snorkeling right out front. I would definitely return and recommend the place to others.
However, there are two things that renters must know prior to renting this place. First, as noted in prior reviews, the beach immediately in front is rock. Water socks (or the like) are absolutely essential if you wish to walk the beach, or swim out front. There is a beautiful sandy beach around the point just to the north. While it may seem like a bit of a trek, it takes less than 10 minutes to walk over, but it does include a semi-precarious scramble down the bluff.
Secondly, the road out to the house is, in my opinion, just passable in a sedan. I recommend either renting an SUV or taking a bus/shuttle/cab from the airport to Los Barriles and renting a Honda Pioneer ATV (or the like). Half way through the trip we rented an ATV to ease the process of going in and out of town. The ATV was also a ton of fun. Also, be warned that if you have never been there and are arriving at night, getting out to the house is no fun in the dark. Since I happened upon the correct road, I would have made it, but driving out in the dark, with my family (including a 1 year old) after 18 hours of travel (from Alaska) was nerve wracking. I bottomed out 2-3 times and was dreading that I would blow a tire and be stuck miles from anywhere, at night on a road that I wasn't even positive was the correct one. I don't mean to be overly negative, but suffice to say, the first time drive out at night is a challenge. On a positive note, secluded location and road make for a very tranquil home base for a vacation.
Extremely restful, comfortable, beautiful, etc. Just bring your water socks and rent an ATV or an SUV!
Our stay at the house was awesome!! The house is beautiful, spacious, and open. We had everything we needed to cook with, do laundry and stay very comfortable. The power went out one night for three hours, and then sporadically throughout our stay. We stayed for two weeks. We could time it because it usually happened around 9 pm.
We had two paddle boards, two kayaks to use whenever we wanted. However the back of the house leading to the water is solid river rock and it is difficult to walk anything down to the water without shoes. Flip flops will not do. So you definitely need water shoes to go to the water for anything. You can get int the water at the house but the rocks hit you if the waves are up and getting out can also be a challenge. It can be done though.
There is a private beach to the north of the house, over the land and down to the water. That beach is perfect for the paddle boards, boogie board and kayaks. We drove our Rhinos to the point and walked down. It was beautiful to lay out at and spend time with the family. There are several other small beaches you can go to also to the south of the house.
My husband spearfished in the water and he got several different types of fish. All good to eat. They also fished at the points near the house and were very successful.
I think overall our stay was great and I loved the house. It is a trip into town if you have a car, very bumpy and dusty. We used our Rhinos a lot which made it more enjoyable to go to town. The house is very private and secluded which was a plus.
The house cameras in the back and front, which I wasn't totally comfortable with. I am not sure if they work or not, it was very disconcerting to think someone was watching you.
But all and all, I loved my vacation there and we had a good time.
Located 7 miles north of Los Barriles is Casa Concha. It is 1 mile south of Punta Pescadero and has its own very private and quiet setting. The spectacular ocean front location is ideal for snorkeling, kayaking, SUP, and fishing from the beach
|Refundable damage deposit||$500|
Cleaning fee of $40 USD for stays of three nights or less. Additional cleaning services available during stay at cost of $40 USD per cleaning.
* Approximate monthly rate. Actual rate will depend on the days of the month you stay.