Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Parador Resort & Spa Celebrates 16 Year Anniversary!

It began with a remarkable piece of secluded cliff-side property blanketed with dense rainforest that offered spectacular ocean vistas stretching from Quepos to Manuel Antonio National Park. And a vision. The vision of a Dutch man named Jan Schans who upon seeing this panoramic plot of land in 1993 imagined a hotel that would both aesthetically respect this unique natural setting and commit to protect it. Towards that end, over the years Parador has reforested, under the aegis of a forestry engineer, the entire area on which our hotel sits.

Mr. Schans’ dream became a reality when Hotel Parador (now Parador Resort & Spa) opened its doors on Punta Quepos, Manuel Antonio with 56 rooms in 1995. It quickly emerged as one of the top luxe properties in the area which has, over the years, evolved into not only the largest full service resort in the area – spread across 12 lush acres of jungle-kissed grounds -- but a tenacious leader in sustainable tourism and community service.

Today, as we proudly celebrate our 16th anniversary, Parador features 129 rooms and suites, three swimming pools, four restaurants and bars, a luxurious world-class spa, fitness room, tennis court, nature trails and green areas. We have hosted innumerable weddings and honeymooners, family reunions and special events, first and repeat visitors and even a handful of celebrities to this special slice of heaven on Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast.

We continue to be a family run business with more than a 150 loyal employees – many of whom have been with us for many years, some since the beginning. Our “We Share” Employee Program persists in supporting and caring for our team while our ongoing commitment to the environment has earned us the ICT’s (Costa Rican Tourist Board) top 5 Leaf Sustainability rating and the Ecological Blue Flag. Named “Costa Rica’s Leading Resort 2010” by the World Travel Awards, we work each day towards achieving and maintaining a standard of excellence within the context of our green philosophy.

Sweet Sixteen! Time marches on and so do we. Thank you for sharing in our success and participating in our ongoing efforts to save – or at least – protect our planet!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Parador Honors Its Own: Employee Achievements Are Recognized At Quarterly Party

With twelve acres, 129 rooms and suites, stringent sustainability practices, 158 employees in seven departments and a constant influx of esteemed guests for whom to care, the Parador family is a busy one indeed. But we still take time out every three months to honor our hard working and loyal staff with a no-holds-barred party! Hosted each quarter by a different department that has free reign to stage the event as it sees fit, the most recent fete was helmed by the Food & Beverage Group. This time they pulled out all the stops to create an afternoon of tongue-in-cheek performance theater and hilarious Chippendales-inspired vid-clips before we all got down to the more serious business of recognizing individual employees for their superlative work and commitment.

Just one element of Parador’s “We Share” employee benefits program (for more information on that check our website, these staff parties provide an opportunity for the Parador team to mingle in a casual non-work environment, while creating a forum in which management can also commemorate its own. Potential honorees are nominated by each department head after which awards – which include pins and/or certificates and monetary gifts – are presented to one winner per month from each department in such categories as “Most Helpful Employee” and “Smile of the Month.” Further, those staffers who have been with Parador for a year or more receive bonuses while those boasting at least ten years of service receive all expense paid vacations for two.

Parador takes great pride in the fact that so many of our employees have long term tenure here. We are delighted to be able to show our appreciation and party with the troops every few months!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Parador Resort & Spa Initiates New “Mysteries Of The Night” Guided Nature Tour

The mysteries of the jungle are unveiled at night and now Parador Resort & Spa invites our guests to experience the wondrous nocturnal world of our resident wildlife in a new 1 ½ to two-hour guided walking tour. Under the aegis of a certified naturalist armed with a telescopic lens and a fistful of knowledge, participants will hike on trails that meander through the resort’s ten acres of lush secondary rainforest inhabited by coatis, sloths, raccoons, skunks, porcupines, numerous species of reptiles and amphibians, and a plethora of curious insects. Particularly striking is the highly photogenic red eyed frog, found only in Costa Rica´s rainforests and living right here on our grounds. If lucky, a caucel or another of the elusive wildcats that lurk in the forest’s deep shadows might also be sighted.
Tours run every night at 6 p.m. and return in plenty of time to have a wonderful meal at one of our fab restaurants. A perfect educational and adventure opportunity for the entire family.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Parador Resort & Spa Supports Teatro Copaza In Quepos: First Cultural Theater For At-Risk Youth In Costa Rica

It’s a well known fact that Parador Resort & Spa is much more than just a world-class resort. Our commitment to the environment and community has earned us a fistful of awards and accolades, including Costa Rica’s highest 5 Leaf Sustainability ranking and, for the third consecutive year, the important Ecological Blue Flag.

Named “Costa Rica’s Leading Resort 2010” by the prestigious World Travel Awards, Parador’s support of numerous community and charitable groups takes equal standing to our dedication to our guests. As such, we have been intimately involved with Copaza, a regional non-profit organization diligently working towards improving the circumstances and opportunities for Costa Rica’s youth.

Of the many projects Copaza has spearheaded since its formation in 2007, the opening last year (2010) of Teatro Copaza here in the small fishing village of Quepos, stands out. As the first such cultural venture in Costa Rica’s Central Pacific region, the theater introduces locals -- particularly kids -- to cultural performances from around the world while also serving as a prototype for similar undertakings throughout the country.

In addition to visiting performance troupes from San Jose, the US, Europe and Latin America, the theater offers art, music and dance classes to local children. Many programs are free, and for those that are not Copaza provides scholarships and other financial assistance for families with limited resources. The goal is to get kids off the street, away from drugs, violence and crime and to provide positive options and inspiration for a more fruitful and successful life.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Parador Resort & Spa Introduces Guided Walking Tours Through Our 9 Acres Of Secondary Rainforest

Parador Resort & Spa is happy to announce that we now offer a new two hour guided nature tour of the 10 acres of jungle trails that dissect our expansive property. Offered at 6 a.m., 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. every day -- a certified professional guide will lead you through lush secondary rainforest where a plethora of wildlife resides. You will likely encounter brilliantly-hued tropical birds -- including toucans, parrots our three resident species of monkeys (titi, white-face and howler), two and three-toed sloths, giant iguanas and other native reptiles. If you’re lucky, as one of our recent guests was – you might also spot an elusive caucel, (margay cat, a wildcat in the puma family). Our experienced guides carry with them telescopic lenses for better viewing and will share vast knowledge of the area’s flora and fauna. This newest Parador activity is an educational expedition for nature lovers of all ages.

We provide water and refreshing cold hand towels and recommend that participants be in reasonable physical condition, wear tennis shoes or hiking boots, and most certainly bring a camera.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Parador Resort & Spa Awarded Ecological Blue Flag For Third Consecutive Year

Parador Resort & Spa is recognized yet again for outstanding commitment to the environment for which we were issued the highest 5 Leaf sustainability rating by the Costa Rican Tourism Board (ICT) in 2010. Now, for the third consecutive year we have been awarded the Ecological Blue Flag acknowledging our environmentally-responsible policies and achievements, outstanding green business practices and ongoing dedication towards preserving and protecting Costa Rica’s fragile eco-system.

Costa Rica’s Blue Flag Ecology Program, a joint venture between several government and non-governmental organizations, including the Costa Rican Tourism Institute, the National Water and Sewer Service, Ministry of Public Health Ministry of Environment, and National Tourism Chamber, amongst others, is associated with the international Blue Flag Program. Initiated in France in 1985, the Blue Flag Program was conceived to improve and monitor sustainable development at beaches and marinas through strict criteria dealing with water quality, environmental education and information, environmental management, and safety.

Owned and operated by the independent non-profit organization Foundation For Environmental Education (FEE), the European-based voluntary awards program increased its scope in 2001 to become a globally active organization which today includes participants in 41 countries across Europe, South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, New Zealand, Brazil, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Parador Resort & Spa Nominated For The 7th Consecutive Years By Prestigious World Travel Awards

Once again, Parador Resort & Spa has been honored with multiple nominations for excellence by the esteemed World Travel Awards. Having been named “Costa Rica’s Leading Resort 2010,” Parador has won accolades by the WTA for six consecutive years and has been submitted in 2011 for consideration in categories including “Mexico & Central America’s Leading Resort, “Costa Rica’s Leading Hotel,” Costa Rica’s Leading Resort,” and “Costa Rica’s Leading Spa Resort.”

The World Travel Awards were launched in 1993 to acknowledge and recognize excellence in the international travel and tourism industry. Now celebrating its 18th anniversary, the prestigious awards are regarded as a mark of high distinction for nominees and recipients, Votes are cast by 183,000 travel professionals which include travel agencies, tour and transport companies and tourism organizations in over 160 countries across the globe.