This past week a US$250 million mega yacht anchored in Quepos, with 62 passengers and 189 crew members, an act that marks the start of the expedition and luxury cruise season. At 168 meters long by 21.5 meters wide, the “Scenic Eclipse” is the first six-star cruise ship in the world, classified as super luxury. On board it brings two helicopters and an expedition submarine.
“Cruise passengers who travel on luxury and expedition ships stay longer in the country and tourists are usually professionals or entrepreneurs with high purchasing power, with annual incomes between US$80,000 and US$120,000. The average cost per passenger is US$3,000,” assured Gustavo Alvarado, director of Tourism Management at the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT).
Alvarado indicated that for these reasons, Costa Rica is focused on attracting this type of vessel, so that they remain longer in national territory and thereby generate an economic boost to the tourism sector.
This Bahamas-flagged cruise ship visits more than 70 ports, including UNESCO World Heritage Sites. It covers Antarctica, the Arctic, the Caribbean and South America.
Guanacaste will receive an expedition ship
Also on Sunday, October 16th, the expedition ship, “Ocean Victory”, anchored at the beaches of Coco, Guanacaste, with 65 passengers and 83 crew members. During the stay of this ship, 90% of the passengers took tours in which they visited attractions of these beaches, and national parks such as Palo Verde.
“Reactivating the economy in our canton has been a challenge. For our administration it is one of the main objectives: the attraction of new investors and tourist visitation, and what better way to do it than with the tourist visits that come from luxury expedition cruises”, explained Carlos Cantillo, mayor of the Municipality of Carrillo.
The expedition and luxury cruise season in Costa Rica begins in October and ends in May. The profile of the people who visit the country through this means of transport are people between 50 and 70 years of age, mainly of American nationality.