Once again, as the summer period draws rapidly to a close, we are faced with yet another transition into the wettest of the wet season. This is typically a time for consolidation among the various tourism businesses within Costa Rica and can sadly often lead to significant layoffs of employees across the country. At our Costa Rica airport hotel, we prefer to cross-train our existing employees to do “other” functions in the times we have few guests. This way, our employees can retain their jobs, and the hotel benefits by ensuring all our intensive training of staff is not wasted every year through layoffs.
During the Sept-Dec timeframe, we have traditionally focused on significant capital improvements to enhance the hotel, and to renew it’s 15 year old services and presentation. However, this year, we are going to focus on customer feedback generated over the past year. This feedback is invaluable to us as it allows us to maintain what works and conversely to eliminate any problems that may come up over the course of hosting thousands of guests per year. This year we have received some guest concerns over hot water reliability. We are currently addressing these concerns and we expect to complete the change over from gas to an electric system by the end of August. It is disappointing to us that the carefully picked gas water on demand system failed to deliver what it promised to do. We had hopes of eventually removing ourselves from the power grid, by first converting all major energy users to gas and then utilizing solar for the remainder.
However, this plan has proven ineffective therefore we are adapting to a new electrical energy saving on demand system. When it is complete, guests will not be able to tell the difference between the systems they use at home and the much more power smart on demand system being put in place. Complete installation throughout the cabins is taking some time due to the need to rewire many areas of the hotel to 220 Volts, complete with heavier gauge wiring and breakers.
Other upgrades will include improvements to our existing WIFI system, finishing up of the exterior painting of the entire hotel, resurfacing and repainting of the walkways, and replacement and painting of the roof over the restaurant area. Significant upgrades to Cabin 12 and our handicapped certified cabin will also be done. Inside, we will be upgrading all our computer systems, installing wireless music and speakers in the common areas, and introducing a brand new reservation system for better guest management. Gone will be the hand-draulic paper based system complete with it’s mountain of colour coded sticky notes!!!! Of course continued maintenance and minor improvements will continue apace!
As always, there is lots to be done. We want to ensure that Hotel La Rosa is 100% ready for the 2012 High Season so as to ensure maximum guest satisfaction! Shortly we will be making a blog comparing and contrasting some of the “then” and “now” differences at La Rosa as we will shortly be celebrating our fourth anniversary of hotel ownership in Costa Rica!