Costa Rica Hosts FTA Media

Costa Rica Hosts FTA Media

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Il Viaggio Travel, a San José, Costa Rica, ground operator, recently took advantage of one of the greatest FTA member benefits – the ability to connect with other members, create meaningful business relationships, and help parents discover what our members are offering traveling families.

The company recently launched a new product line – Costa Rica Family Holidays – and was looking to garner more media exposure both for their company, as well as the country.

Working with the Costa Rican Tourism Institute, Il Viaggio fashioned a 6-day press trip in early December, for a select group of the FTA Media Center’s members. The trip was focused on the country’s wide variety of family-friendly sights and venues, and authentic, cultural experiences.

“We’ve been working with Rainer, trying to convince him that Costa Rica is a great family destination,” said Stephanie Sheehy, Il Viaggio co-owner. “We decided to make our inaugural event this press trip.”

Participants included Shellie Bailey-Shah, KidTripster; Reid Fuller, Dotting the Map; Heidi Gollub, Kids are a Trip; Eileen Gunn, FamiliesGo!; Christa Jimenez, Pura Vida Moms; Lisa O’Driscoll, Fun Money Mom and Traveling Mom; Nicole Omohundro,; Liling Pang, Trekaroo; Lucee Santini, MomJunky; and FTA Founder Rainer Jenss.

During the trip, attendees had the chance to get up close with Red and Green Macaws, the Mountain Pavon, Spider Monkeys and more than 125 local species at the Animal Rescue Zooave, a park and botanical gardens just 40 minutes from San Jose. The center rescues and protects birds, mammals and reptiles that cannot be released again to their natural habitats.

They also visited the Sarchi Artisan Village, best known for the vibrant , bright-colored oxcarts that are handcrafted here and sold all over the country, and explored the forest and wildlife sanctuary at Mistico Hanging Bridges. They also enjoyed the Baldi Hot Springs, a wellness resort, took a guided walk through the Peninsula Sector of the Arenal Volcano National Park and went ziplining at Ecoglide Park.

“I was surprised at the amount of ecotourism,” Santini said. Another highlight was being hosted at Sheehy’s home for a barbeque and joining in to cook authentic Costa Rican food, and visiting a coffee farm. “I don’t think it could have been as memorable without the knowledge and history Diego, our guide, gave us,” Santini said.

Accommodations were in small hotels, like the Villas del Rio and Arenal Paraiso, and meals were at local, family-owned restaurants.

“Our destinations and suppliers tell us that the ability to host media members and make these kinds of connections are some of the main reasons why they join the FTA,” said Jenss. “It’s always rewarding to see the long-lasting relationships that rise out of these kinds of events and the media coverage they garner, so we’re looking forward to working with more of our members in 2019 to replicate this success.”


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6 responses to “Costa Rica Hosts FTA Media”

  1. Emilio says:

    Costa Roca Rocks!!

  2. Shellie Bailey-Shah says:

    Emilio & Stephanie were A+ hosts! And our guide Diego and driver Victor were top-notch. I love Costa Rica!

  3. LiLing Pang says:

    I loved how our group of media really bonded with each other and as a result, worked collaboratively together on social media, photography, and now with editorial to show case the experience from our different points of view. This is what really set apart this press trip for me. Our common passion, trust, and desire to work together. It is a win for the supplier, it is win for the destination, it is a win for the media members. Thanks for bringing us down to Costa Rica, Stephanie and Emilio.

  4. Kirsten says:

    It was wonderful to watch all of the media and suppliers work together from afar. This trip looked fabulous from beginning to end and it’s my understanding, the experiences were top notch and the people were fabulous. Well done Il Viaggio and FTA.

  5. Lucee Santini says:

    Thank you Stephanie and Emilio for showing us your beautiful country. Diego was amazing and so knowledgeable, I learned so much from him about Costa Rica. I also loved how we worked together as a team to pull together beautiful images and videos of our trip.

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