Central Pacific

The Central Pacific, like Northwest Guanacaste, has been going through quite a building boom over the past few years, and a whole lot of resorts, condominiums, condotels, and gated communities are set to come onto the market there in the near future. The rate of development is such that it’s spilled out from the cherry beach areas up and down the highway that runs along the coast into the hills set back a few kilometers from the ocean.

The main town in this area is Jacó, and its proximity to San José (a little over two hours of driving) has made it the weekend party town of town for San José Ticos for many years now. Lately, the town’s closeness to the country’s main international airport has made it something of the party town for many a North American and European as well, some for the prostitutes (for which Jacó is well known) and others for the excellent surfing. Sport fishing was added to the list of attractions with the opening of a marina in the Los Sueños resort in nearby Herradura.

The other famous development spots in the Central Pacific are an hour or two south, around the fishing town of Quepos and Manuel Antonio, that latter home to one of Costa Rica’s smallest yet most-visited national parks. The park’s popularity comes from its accessibility: a pocket of dense rainforest bordered by stunning creamy-sand beaches, both pristine and teaming with wildlife, yet just a few hundred meters from restaurants and hotels.

With land prices sky-high on the coast, investors have turned to the mountains just inland from the beach towns of the Central Pacific for the next round of development, which will mean more subdivisions and gated resort communities. Vistas de Manuel Antonio is an excellent example of a development in the mountains.

In addition to its status as one of the most popular places in the country to buy a vacation home, the Central Pacific also has the potential to become popular with retirees, though that will only really become possible once the new highway between San José and the Pacific puts good private hospitals and other services within easy reach. A new marina going up in Quepos promises to bring more sports fishermen and women, and a new wave of tourism and real estate development with them.

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