Airport in Cóbano to Boost Luxury Tourism, New Air Routes, and More Investment in the Nicoya Peninsula

Airport in Cóbano to Boost Luxury Tourism, New Air Routes, and More Investment in the Nicoya Peninsula

The new airport in Cóbano is hailed by entrepreneurs and investors as a turning point for larger projects to come to fruition in the southern Nicoya Peninsula.

The airport terminal, inaugurated in early August, also represents a new opportunity for more air routes and the arrival of tourists with higher purchasing power to an area that envisions greater long-term investments.

The project was conceived in the minds of two gyrocopter pilots and instructors who, after renting land for their personal company, saw the opportunity along with the owner of the facilities to create the "Cóbano Airport" partnership to offer a better option to local airlines that operate flights to this area.

"We are satisfied to have achieved it. It has been a process that we've been working on for a long time, a well-thought-out and worked-on process. Although we have inaugurated it now, of course, it's a satisfaction. We've faced challenges until we achieved it. There are a few things left to finish, but we needed to inaugurate. We are eager to keep working and moving forward. This is not the end; it's the beginning of a project," said Santiago Guinea, owner and member of the partnership.

A 1,300-meter-long runway, with a 1,000-meter "runway" and the remaining length as a safety zone, provides assurance for the aircraft of the airlines that will arrive at this new destination.

A passenger lounge with air conditioning and Wi-Fi, comfortable restrooms, offices, hangars, a café restaurant, shops, taxi services, and vehicle rentals are part of the amenities offered by the new facilities.

Currently, the investment amounts to around $1 million. However, it's just the beginning of several phases planned by the investors (Guinea, Francisco Rodríguez, and Manuel Fernández) of the airport terminal.

"All of this will be a turning point for larger projects to be carried out in the area, such as the Tambor Marina that required a terminal and runway of this kind, and thus attract clients in the future. In the end, this will be a path towards other projects that will be much more significant because the airport will be just a means," added Guinea.

In a second phase, the lighting of the runway is expected to be completed, allowing emergency service aircraft to have nighttime departures and enabling airlines to bring tourists during nighttime hours, which is currently not possible.

For a third phase, the possibility of supplying JET fuel is being considered to allow aircraft to refuel at the terminal, facilitating new air routes.

Airlines such as Sansa, Green Airways, Aero Caribe, and Prestige are interested in operating flights to this new terminal, making the tourist experience more convenient, according to Guinea.

The airport is seen as a crucial element that will enable significant developments in the area, most of which are directly related to tourism, according to Ángel Coello, President of the Central Pacific Cluster.

Coello, who also leads the Tambor Marina project, is convinced that this airport terminal will persuade many investors to pursue major projects in the area.

"The importance of the airport is not just because it's larger or more comfortable, but because of the chain reactions that will occur in the southern Nicoya Peninsula. This southern zone of the Nicoya Peninsula is transitioning to a more upscale clientele, aiming for high-quality and prestigious tourism," said Coello.

Indeed, a major seven-star hotel chain could come to the area with the Tambor Marina project, which necessitated an airport that provides suitable conditions for such visitors.

Furthermore, Coello believes that new air routes and more flights would prompt airlines to consider aircraft with more seats, making it more affordable for middle-class tourists who currently travel by ferry to opt for flying more frequently.

"With this terminal, we can generate more people flying here, more local airlines bringing in larger aircraft, which would lower ticket and transportation prices," Coello added.

Certainly, with the opening of the new airport in Cóbano, individuals now have a new option to be just seven minutes away from Montezuma or 17 minutes away from Santa Teresa and Mal País. Investors may also set their sights on the area for future investments.

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