Pura Vida. It translates to “the good life,” and it’s the phrase that best sums up the Central American nation of Costa Rica.
Situated between Nicaragua and Panama, Costa Rica is a tiny sliver of land–about the size of West Virginia–that packs a lot into its 23,000 square miles. An emerging tourist destination with a population of 4.5 million residents, Costa Rica offers an abundance of wildlife, active volcanoes, majestic mountains, powerful rivers and crystal blue ocean waters.
Rental management company Stay in Costa Rica invited H&FSM account executive Shawn Broussard to enjoy a four-day media junket, and he returned with a lifetime of stories following his stay at the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort, where he stayed in one of the resort’s luxurious condos. The fun started as soon as Broussard’s 3½ hour direct flight from Houston touched down.
“I had an absolutely fantastic stay,” Broussard says. “Los Sueños was fabulous and they had activities planned for us as soon as we stepped off the plane.”
Broussard’s stay, coordinated by Magan M. Hunt, president of Houston based MMH Marketing, included a sampler of the countless recreational and relaxation activities provided by the resort located on the Pacific Ocean side of the country.
“The first thing I did was play golf on the magnificent La Iguana Golf Course. Jose Quesada (the course’s director of golf) outfitted me with clubs and everything, and the course, which is pretty difficult, was bordered by the ocean on one side and the rain forest on the other,” Broussard says.
The golf outing was followed by a deep-sea fishing excursion the next day. Venturing 60 miles out into the Pacific aboard the 32-foot Custom Maverick sport yacht named “Sunny One”, Broussard hooked the largest fish of his life: a 125-pound sail fish.
“It was amazing! It took me about 20 minutes to get him into the boat,” Broussard recalls. “For conservation’s sake, they practice catch and release, but I’ve got the pictures to prove it.”
The official language of Costa Rica, an independent democracy since 1848, is Spanish, but most Ticos (native Costa Ricans) speak English. While the official currency is the Colon, most places accept U.S. dollars. The average temperature ranges from 50 degrees in the mountainous regions to the 80s along the coastal areas. The rainy season runs from May to October.
Following an evening dinner at one of the resort’s world-class restaurants, Broussard enjoyed some ATV riding the next day. The ATV, provided by Adventure Tours, took Broussard into some of the scenic mountain areas.
Broussard’s stay also included zip line riding, a beach side massage, shopping and visits to some of the neighboring small towns and villages.
“I have to thank Larry Savage (Stay in Costa Rica founder and head of Real Estate), Magan and all of the staff at Los Sueños for making it a great trip,” Broussard says. “This won’t be my last trip there.”