Well, it is pretty likely that most businesses that receive thousands of guests from around the world end up with some pretty interesting, even unlikely stories from time to time. For us at La Rosa de America, one of the most bizarre stories commenced about four years ago.
The Gardens of Hotel La Rosa are a sanctuary for scores of birds, animals and interesting insects all busy trying to make a home away from the noise, pavement, cars and the excessive number of dogs owned by Costa Ricans in the populous San Jose Airport region.
One day, four years ago, a baby tree squirrel tried for the first time to hop from one mango tree to the next. (Costa Rican tree squirrels are aggressive jumpers and can easily jump from tree to tree) However, this poor fellow got all knotted up, missed his landing zone and fell to the ground. In doing so he broke his back and was now a paraplegic squirrel. Normally this is where the story would end as in the wild, the survival time of this squirrel would be measured at most in hours. However, the staff at La Rosa rescued the injured squirrel, bought a cage and cared for him. Charlie the squirrel became the unofficial mascot of our Alajuela Airport Hotel.
Unfortunately, Mother Nature never really let up on Charlie and he slowly became sick and eventually died undoubtedly from complications resulting from his paralysis.
So, La Rosa was without a mascot (we have no dogs on the property unlike most hotels as it is too hard to keep them from barking when they hear another dog bark at 2 in the morning!) Therefore, we acquired a Guinea Pig in a moment of “weakness”. Chancha is now about six months old, more or less fully grown and sits/squeaks proudly outside the reception door happily greeting guests. More likely, we suspect she is mostly hoping for more food! Thus the name “Chancha”… which in Spanish is a common reference to coins destined for the “Piggy” Bank.
Chancha has already nosed her way into the hearts of many children who have recently visited our hotel – and more than a few adults too! If she is out surveying her domain when you arrive, do remember to say hi to her!