Grab a coffee – it’s Pura Vida time
Dear friends and colleagues,
Finally, we’ve turned a corner and it’s beginning to feel a lot like summer – how lucky we are in this part of the world to have all the extra daylight these long evenings offer.
The Only Way is ELA – let’s make it in Chelsea!
ELA will be at its new Chelsea Football Club venue next week – naturally, I’ll be there in the esteemed company of:
Carolina and Paula are gearing up to help you get to grips with all the latest from Blumar in Brazil, but to tide you over, here are a few appetisers from Travel Excellence in Costa Rica.
New route to Liberia
Liberia airport in Guanacaste is Costa Rica’s gateway to the northwest but scheduled flights from Europe have always involved the rigmarole of a plane change in the US. From late October this year, your clients will have the option of flying KLM to Liberia via Amsterdam on a Dreamliner. KL717 will operate four times a week to San Jose, continue to Liberia and then head back non-stop to Amsterdam. Think of all those regional departures and open-jaw options!
|Foodie San JoseSan Jose isn’t usually a place where clients linger but it’s worth mentioning that some of San Jose’s barrios are getting in on the street food act. So if you have some culinarily inclined clients who want their tastebuds tickled, Barrio Amon is within walking distance of Hotel Grano de Oro.|
For the more determined, Barrio Escalante with its food trucks and stalls is a half hour cab ride away. For more info, as always, please just give me or Travel Excellence a shout.
It’s all about the details
Travel Excellence are always working on how they can improve their clients’ holidays and for this reason, Marco has been out in Costa Rica sampling all sorts of ‘experiences’. All will be revealed at ELA, but reading between the lines, you’ll soon be able to go the extra mile for your clients and offer them a range of bespoke experiences bookable through Travel Excellence to help you nab that booking!
Origins Lodge – rave reviews and views to rave about
Travel Excellence have been championing Origins Lodge up in the north of Costa Rica ever since its opening last year; when a review opens with ‘a paradise lost in the rainforest’ and all the others wax lyrical in the same vein, our people in San Jose (as usual!) were clearly ahead of the game.
Origins Lodge is a striking property set high up on a plateau, with sweeping views over the rainforest and volcanoes towards Lake Nicaragua.
With an extensive set of nature trails and fantastic birdwatching opportunities, it even has its own on-site organic farm. Michelin-starred Chef Jean-Luc L’Hourre serves guests a fusion of French and Costa Rican cuisine but it’s the views of the volcanoes and Lake Nicaragua that make staying here so magical. Each of the 6 individual lodges is spacious and comes with a huge terrace, a fire-heated bath and an open air shower. There’s also a another lodge that’s big enough to accommodate a large family or even or group of friends.
It’s a 2-hour drive from Arenal but it’s also worth mentioning that if your clients are coming from or continuing to the north west coast, a scenic 45-minute helicopter flight might be preferable to the 5-hour road transfer to/from Guanacaste.
Did I mention the view? Well, how about this for a view? From the infinity pool no less!
Chachagua Rainforest Lodge – under new management. And wow!
This is not a new hotel but when it first launched, it didn’t pass muster with Travel Excellence. A new management team is now in place and the property has recently emerged from a massive upgrade, resulting Chachagua being transformed into a property that Travel Excellence is now really keen to endorse.
Marco recently spent a couple of nights at Chachagua, and was totally enthralled by the experience. One of the highlights was a night hike where he saw 10 species of frog in the space of just 2 hours – to put it another way, that’s a different frog every 12 minutes!
Chachagua offers its guests basic but comfortable rooms and, with it being only half an hour by road/dirt track from La Fortuna, your clients will get the full rainforest experience (complete with birds, monkeys, raccoons and aforementioned frogs) without spending half a day in a 4×4 being bounced along jungle tracks to get there.
Travel Excellence are in the process of updating their tariff and image gallery to include Chachagua but don’t hesitate to contact me or the Travel Excellence team for the full rundown on this great addition to their Arenal portfolio.
I’m really looking forward to meeting many of you at ELA or putting these extra hours of daylight to good use by catching up with you over an al-fresco tipple or two afterwards.
In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact me should you have questions about any of the above, or indeed anything else WMR-related.