Costa Rica hotel profits from medical tourism

One way to stand above the crowd in Costa Rica’s competitive hotel industry is to appeal to medical travel.

Residence Inn, located in San Jose, looked across the street at the CIMA Hospital and saw a partner for drawing in guests. The hotel offers discounted rates to patients of the hospital, who come to Costa Rica for inexpensive cosmetic surgery at a price typically 50% less than what the procedure would cost in the U.S.

Since starting the policy about 20% of the hotel’s rooms are sold with the patient discount, marketed via direct sales to primarily Americans.

“The hotel has a distribution list of clients they reach out to and they also market through their sales team. They are just beginning to hone in on the medical market — it is a relatively new market for them,” Audra Clemons, a spokesperson for Residence Inn says. “Costa Rica has actually become a top destination for medical travel, particularly elective/plastic surgery.”

The hotel is located in the upscale Excazu suburb of San Jose, the capital and largest city of Costa Rica.

While guests are recovering from surgery, the hotel offers grocery services, high-speed Internet, laundry and a daily hot buffet breakfast all for free. Each room features a full kitchen regardless of how many bedrooms it features, and at 109 rooms the hotel markets itself as a chic extended stay lodging.

The Residence Inn is one of five Marriott International chain hotels operating in Costa Rica.