Marina Papagayo is One of the Newest Additions to Costa Rica Tourism Infrastructure.
Since the economic crisis hit Costa Rica investment hard, halting tourist and residential projects and scaring off million dollar real estate development plans, several projects have managed to stay afloat with a positive outlook for the future of tourism in the country. Many investors will be watching the outcome of these investments intently, using them as a strong indicator for whether Costa Rica tourism has the potential to continue growing exponentially, or whether it is time to slow things down.
One local firm, Arquidea Developers, is constructing a $16 million tourist complex at the entrance to Puntarenas near the Hotel Colonial installations. The first stage of the project, called Puerto Azul, has already been completed and entails a seven story condo tower. The second stage, a second tower, is slated for completion in July 2009. The project is being constructed on a 20,000 square meter property and will include a 102 room hotel and a private port with a capacity for 90 ships. They are currently negotiating the possibility of franchising the hotel with two international hotel chains. Once completed, the project will directly generate more than 1,000 jobs in the region.
“Puntarenas was an excellent tourist destination 30 years ago, we want to recapture that,” Marketing director of the project, Ana Casafont, said. The port town has seen its glory days as a tourist destination, and is now most known for its cruise ship dock and for being the jump off point to get to the more idyllic beaches of the Nicoya Peninsula by ferry. However, with recent community clean up efforts, a beach face lift (which earned an Ecological Blue Flag) and a healthy dose of ‘passers through’, the new development may be the final ingredient to spark a renaissance in the ocean front community. Add to that the new San Jose – Caldera highway that is slated for completion at the end of this year, allowing Josefinos to jet to the beach in under an hour, and one might stop questioning Arquidea’s foresight.
Another Costa Rican developer, Grupo Rica Costa, recently began work on a new condominium-hotel, the Wyndham Jaco Beach. The hotel will be located in Jaco beach, on the Central Pacific coast of Puntarenas and expects to offer 250 jobs in the construction phases and 180 jobs upon opening. The investment group is also known for the Via Lindora, Valle de Tamarindo, Solaris, and HSBC building projects.
Another recent project, the Marina Papagayo just inaugurated its first phase last month within the Desarollo Papagayo project, which houses the Four Seasons and Hilton Papagayo. The new international marina currently has space for 180 vessels, though eventually they hope to have high tech facilities for 380 ships. The land portion of the project, Marina Village, will have more than 500 residences with exclusive access to resort facilities like the Arnold Palmer Golf Course and the Prieta Beach Club & Spa.
|Written by Claire Saylor|
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Filed under: Travel on January 16th, 2009