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Friday, January 29th, 2016  |  USD: Buy 531.29 / Sell 543.92
20 years

At least 23 new hotels coming in the near future; will add nearly 2,500 rooms

hotel construction

(ICR archive for illustration purposes)

August 19th, 2014 ( Another 23 new hotels that are under construction or with approved construction permits will add an additional 2,444 rooms to the country’s inventory, according to the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT).


The numbers only include projects that have registered with ICT, which is not required.


The Costa Rican Chamber of Construction (CCC) indicates the numbers are within expectations.  New hotel construction has “stabilized” after reaching a peak in 2011, which saw 140,670 square meters of new hotel construction, CCC said.


Last year, that figure dropped to 51,975 square meters.


Permits for 12,306 square meters of hotel construction were issued in the first half of this year.


The Central Pacific province of Puntarenas and the Caribbean province of Limon saw the most activity in the first half of this year.


For the year 2013, Guanacaste led the way in hotel construction, issuing permits for 26,030 square meters, followed by San Jose (12,492 square meters) and Puntarenas (7,039 square meters).


Tourism Minister, Wilhelm von Breymann said that construction of new hotels is not expected to slow anytime soon, citing an increase in tourist arrivals and the possible arrival of new airlines and routes serving the country.


However, the minister said there is a new trend towards smaller hotels with fewer rooms.


Guanacaste is expected to see the most construction activity this year, where permits have been issued for eight new projects including a large 447-room project in La Cruz.


Six projects are in the works for San Jose and five in Puntarenas.


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  • disgusted

    I thought the current hotel owners are complaining with only 50% occupancy and now in Guanacaste no water and hotels might have to close, no sewage system all toilets flush into the rivers.. With all the bad press about tourist being taking advantage of , high prices, beaches with high feces contamination, and criminal running loose how can this be?? Who in the world wants to come here anymore? It must be a few promoting but what??

  • Michael Clarkson

    Who is dumb enough to put more hotels and invest money here and deal with a corrupt government, probably what they are doing is laundering drug money from Colombia and other parts of the world, good luck dealing with the Caja and corrupt police and government officials, come to Costa Risa at your own risk. I travel to travel to other countries and I am telling everyone from North America to Europe to stay the hell away from this place there are cheaper and better countries in Latin America.

    • disgusted

      I am told many from Venezuela are coming here with $$$$$ to invest. The Chi Chi’s in Escazu owners and several other places I think Tacobar are from there as well.. your right on about this. Invest huge sums get your residency/citizenship.

    • David Jones

      Why don’t you stay the hell away from here?

      • Frank Castle

        He probably will. Panama is cheaper and a better deal. Robbery is much lower in Panama too.

        • Michael Clarkson

          Better roads too, Nicaragua is cheap too, I traveled all over Nicaragua and I felt safe I go to San Jose and I have my guard up all the time, Ecuador is great too and Bolivia.

          • turbooperator

            not surprising, Panama has the same GDP with only half as many miles of paved roads, and a higher poverty rate

          • Karen Mata

            The cops seem to be more the protect and serve variety, rather than the 600$ seat belt violation, and shake-down artists that CR evolved to during my couple of decades there.

        • turbooperator

          they just kill you instead ( with double the murder rate)

          • mhogan

            Double the murder rate or double the REPORTED murder rate of CR. At least if you do the crime in Panama you get caught and do the time. And La Jolla is not like CR’s prisons (already pretty bad). And what is your source of stats for Panama?

          • turbooperator

            just google murder/homicide rate by country and one will find many sources. Most have Panama in the 20 per 100,000 and Costa Rica 10 or so. I don’t think murder goes un or under reported, unlike theft and assault, which is rarely reported because even if you are caught in CR (as you point out) you wont do time. (and even with under reporting of other crimes CR still is among the highest ranked)

      • Michael Clarkson

        David you are probably another corrupt dumb blind sheep did we hit a nerve did we?

        • mhogan


        • Likk Mii

          Probably a “realtor”.

  • Ken Morris

    Well, there’s always room for a newcomer who can do the job better, but except for opening a sports bar or brothel, I can think of no less creative a business idea in CR than opening another tourist hotel.

    Meanwhile, not a soul in CR makes cheddar cheese for less than twice the price it sells for in the US. There is no shortage of business opportunities in CR, only a shortage business vision (and probably the capital willing to finance anything that departs from the tourism-driven model).

  • costarick

    Money laundering is the most likely correct response to this hotel construction boom. If that’s the case, it doesn’t have to make business sense and it doesn’t. Maybe SUGEF’s time would be better spent researching the source of the funds for these hotel projects rather than making it so difficult for the average foreign couple (U.S./Canada) to open a bank account, or transfer money to Costa Rica for a real estate purchase for their retirement.

  • SarongGoddess

    What type of Share Holders would want their $$ going into an industry like this in time of a not so great (& going down) economy . . . .???
    I talked to numerous hotel owners in beach areas that were quite dead in July this year – the big time for North American & European travelers. Nicaragua who had seen their #s JUMP CONSIDERABLY even was SLOW. LOTS of good points below!!!!!!!

  • expatin paradise

    The really disgusting point is that these high-rise eyesores have been permitted when there is no water supply to support them. As for the question of the need for more rooms when there is only 50% occupancy, these big developments will take business from the smaller hotels because they will have more facilities on site (e.g., pools, spas. restaurants, lounges, casinos) They will also be able to advertise internationally. Of course, once these structures are built, their owners will demand better roads and other infrastructure.

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