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Director of Travel Planning
Yesenia came to us in March 2008, having racked up experience as the Tour & Travel Sales Manager at a local operator. Costa Rican tourism is in Yesenia’s blood; her parents run a business transporting travelers throughout the country. When she first started university her aim was to learn to manage the family business.
As part of her studies she spent a year in Prescott Arizona, where she was able to master English and develop a love for playing volleyball. Today her excellent English impresses, and although she’s no longer playing much volleyball, it continues to be her favorite sport.
It was after returning from abroad and while finishing her university studies in Costa Rica that Yesenia did a pivotal internship with a travel agency. From then on she has focused more exclusively on travel planning and sales.
During her first two years in charge of Sales Department she was both head of Travel Planning and in charge of product management, before we were finally able to allow her to focus wholly on our Travel Planning team.
She says that what she has really enjoyed over the years is getting to know her team; watching them grow and working closely with each one to develop their skills. Her goal is that her team continuously gets better at creating and selling the Costa Rican experience.
What makes the Costa Rica experience according to Yesenia? Well, if you want to see something that is truly new and unique, then you have to visit Tortuguero, hands down. She says it’s where first class service, wildlife and interaction with the local community collide. After that, maybe the Arenal Volcano area for adventure activities. Personally she loves visiting Guanacaste in the North, both for the beaches and the one of a kind tropical dry forests.
Exploring forests is easy for Yesenia, who is married to Pablo Richard, one of our naturalist guides. Pablo guides for us less these days, in order to focus on his work at the University of Peace, where he is in charge of developing a trail system for their large private forest reserve.
Yesenia has been really loving our new San Jose location. She gets to the office much earlier than most of us, in order to get in an hour run around the neighborhood before cleaning up and getting down to work. Exercising thus leaves her evenings free for her true passion: spending time with her daughters. Pamela was born in 2004, Valentina in 2012, and together they keep her both very happy and busy!
Meet Yesenia and watch her talk about one of her favorite past guests: