Vol.18  No. 523 Wednesday Edition, May 23, 2018
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Costa Rican companies will learn
how to boost their wellness businesses

By A.M. Costa Rica

Costa Rican companies will learn how to enhance and increase the profitability of their operations and services of their spas or wellness centers during the wellness management course June 9 and 10.

The participants will learn how to integrate the wellness concept in their businesses and understand the differences between spas and wellness centers. The course will help them standardize all the resources, operations and services of their spa or wellness center and teach them the trends of the present and future of the industry, said organizers.

"In the country there are a lot of businesses of this kind, and as of today, they are undervalued. This course will teach how to get the most out of it and make it even more profitable, so that the wellness is incorporated within the commercialization concept of the establishment and give it the same importance as the sale of a house," said Laura Barrantes, president of the Costa Rican Association of Welfare Tourism.

The course will be taught by César Tejedor and Daniel Roibal. Both are instructors from Spain who know the country well and the potential it has in the wellness industry.

Wellness management is held as part of the celebration of World Wellness Day in the Hotel Aurola Holiday Inn.

Those who take the course can register at the National Learning Institute and carry out an evaluation of the company. As a result, they can be provided with advice and specialized on-site technical assistance.

"We are talking about a high-level market, since tourists of this type spend 130 percent more than the regular tourist. This market niche may be the key to reduce seasonality," added Barrantes.

A.M. Costa Rica wire services photo  
The wellness industry might help mitigate the negative consequences of low season.

Worldwide, the wellness industry generates around $3.7 trillion per year with tourism, wellness and spas generating more than $700 billion in 2015, according to the association.

The training is sponsored by the Costa Rica Wellness Development in collaboration with the Costa Rican Association of Tourism of Wellbeing, the Costa Rican Tourism Board, the National Learning Institute, and the National Chamber of Tourism.

Organization proposes geoparks to reactivate
Poás and Turrialba as tourist destinations

By A.M. Costa Rica staff

The organization Volcanos without Frontiers  proposes the design of a different development model for Poás and Turrialba tourist areas, which have faced a decrease in tourism.

The model consists of a territory that contains both a unique geological heritage and a local development strategy of its own. It has clearly defined limits and enough surface so that it can generate its own economic development.

Its inclusion in the perimeter of the volcanoes would allow these national parks to reduce dependence on how many people visit to the crater, according to the organization.

Geoparks exist in Japan, China, Spain and Perú.

These would not be only a geological protection of the area, but also an important attraction.

"It is not just a geological protection figure nor does it intend to be, although geoparks can contribute to the protection of geological heritage. It also focuses in the quality of life of its inhabitants, its biodiversity and its economic benefit," says the statement sent by the organization.

The proposed Poás volcano geopark would comprise an area of 520 square kilometers.

The cantons of Poás, Alajuela, Valverde Vega, Grecia, Río Cuarto, San Carlos and Heredia would be involved in the project.

A.M. Costa Rica wire services photo   
Mount Unzen in Japan is one of the examples of geoparks proposed by the organization.

The route also includes agricultural production sites where, thanks to volcanic soils, there are coffee and strawberry plantations, among other gastronomic offerings.

This geopark would be the starting point to replicate the projects in other volcanic national parks such as Turrialba and Irazú.

A refurbished Muellero Park will receive
tourists and cruisers in Puntarenas

By A.M. Costa Rica staff

A concrete structure emulating the movement of the waves will soon receive tourists who arrive on a cruise ship to the pier in Puntarenas.

This is part of the refurbishment project of the Muellero Park located at the end of the Paseo de los Turistas boulevard.

The work is inspired by the Paseo de la Pérgola in Málaga, Spain. The one that will be built in Puntarenas will have a lighting system in each of the vertebrae, which can be illuminated in colors to commemorate some events, said Roger Ríos, the executive president of the Costa Rican Institute of Ports of the Pacific.

The work includes two small internal parks as well as an amphitheater with benches and green areas.

Ríos said that the developer of the project was asked to use materials that require little maintenance and are resistant to the sea breeze so it will not be affected by its proximity to the beach.

The estimated cost of the work is $2.1 million which is pending approval by the Board of Directors of the ports agency.

The executive president of the institute said that the idea is to beautify the center of Puntarenas and avoid the flight of tourists to distant parks, wildlife refuges, and museums, depriving the local population from profiting from tourism.

With Muellero Park people can connect the pier with the Marine Park, which will attract more visitors to this attraction.

A.M. Costa Rica wire services photo  
Rendered image of the Puerto Muellero infrastructure.

The project must first be endorsed by ports agency. Then the search of a concessionary will start and it may take up to six months. The construction of the work is estimated at six months.

Ríos said that this development is part of a series of improvements that are planned to be made at the dock so it can attract more cruises.

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