SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA - Maria Amalia Revelo, Costa Rica's new minister of tourism, has revealed her plans to increase tourism to the Central American nation over the next four years. With over 40 years of experience in the airline, tourism and hospitality industry, Revelo has an ambitious agenda to continue placing Costa Rica at the forefront as the most visited destination in Central America.
Among her priorities for the next four years are the promotion of small and medium-sized companies while strengthening the joint work between the public and private sector. Great emphasis will also be on the development of new local destinations and products with a special focus on culture and gastronomy.
"We are a destination that is constantly evolving, able to offer unique experiences to visitors 365 days of the year. A small but large country not only in its natural richness, but also because of our warm and hospitable people, who will certainly manage to sow in your hearts the desire to return," said Revelo.
With the country's new convention center in full swing, Revelo is determined to position Costa Rica as an attractive destination for the MICE industry. Efforts of attracting new flight routes to the country from North America are also on Revelo's agenda.
"The North American market remains the main generator of tourists to the country with nearly 1.3 million annual visitors and a prospect market potential estimate of more than 20 million visitors," said Revelo. "I will place special emphasis on the United States, as it is very important that we strengthen the relationship with the airlines that come from that region. Additional routes will strengthen the air operations of such an important market and open new opportunities at truly competitive prices."
Costa Rica is a leader in the quest for environmental sustainability. Naturally, sustainability is a cross axis in all of Revelo's actions in the ministry; she will focus efforts on strengthening and encouraging more companies in the sector to obtain sustainable tourism certification (CST). The tourism board has currently issued this certification to 391 tourism companies including hotels, tour operators, car rental companies, as well as marinas and restaurants that showcase their commitment to sustainable operations in their businesses.
"It is my belief that together, Costa Rica is on a great path to attract more tourists and achieve environmental sustainability," said Revelo.