Senderos’ Perspective on the Path Forward.
The unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic has upended life as we know it everywhere. While Costa Rica is no exception, we are proud of the government’s response and efforts to keep those in this small country safe when confronted with the unknown, ever-changing situation that has unfolded. As Costa Rica poises to cautiously ease some restrictions for residents, we’d like to offer some thoughts and perspective as it relates to Costa Rica and COVID-19.
Investors and buyers everywhere are asking the same questions. When will things return to normal? What will the “new normal” look like? Specifically, in the case of Costa Rica, a country deeply dependent on tourism and travel, when will borders open? When will it be safe to fly?
At this writing, nobody knows the answers to these questions. We’ve seen a lot of people making predictions. We are not going to try and answer these “unknowns” here.
What we can offer is our best read on things here on the ground in Costa Rica, some assumptions about interest in real estate based on potential clients reaching out to us, and finally, some optimism (we all need that, don’t we?).
- The Costa Rican government and people have done an incredible job managing this pandemic. Costa Rica acted quickly to close borders, shut down beaches and restrict mobility. This has kept the bulk of the population in their primary homes. Social distancing practices, the warm weather, and outdoor living have kept the risk very low in the beach areas.
- Costa Rica has maintained a very low number of confirmed cases and a low number of intensive care patients and deaths. Despite being one of the most popular destinations for foreigners (visiting and relocating), the Guanacaste region, where Senderos is located, has the second least number of cases in the country (Limon, remote and mostly industrial, has the least).
- The country’s quick action to implement travel and vehicle restrictions, closing off all public areas and most nonessential businesses seems to have paved the path for Costa Rica to come out of this faster than most other destinations. With tourism as the number one industry in Costa Rica, both the leadership and the country’s citizens understand the importance of being responsible now so tourists can safely return as soon as possible. Costa Rica’s responsible approach to dealing with the pandemic, plus natural features of the country such as low-density population, warm weather, safe and responsible business operations are all reasons why we are optimistic that we will emerge from this crisis as a premier destination.
- In the last month or so, we have had a number of inquiries about home-sites and homes in the Senderos project. We always ask what is motivating these requests, and the answer is especially relevant now given shifts in the global economy. We have seen a significant uptick in two areas:
- First, health and wellness. People are reconsidering their families’ lifestyles. They are looking for ways to make real change to ensure peace and well-being. Costa Rica has long been known for healthy, active lifestyles and exceptional medical and holistic services.
- Second, people are looking for a tangible change. Home countries around the world have responded differently to the pandemic, some with success and others less so. We are receiving inquiries from people who have decided that their home country and its leaders are not well-enough equipped to handle crisis. So, they are setting their sights elsewhere.
Finally, a thought from us on human nature. We believe people are inherently good, empathetic, curious, and optimistic. A life lived any other way is just plain unhappy. Whatever the “new normal” is, we expect that it will include travel, adventure, and amazing experiences with family and friends.
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