Do Tourist Want to See Destinations ‘Improved’ by Development?

Excerpt from New York Times

Skift Take

Santa Theresa reflects a dilemma affecting much of the tourism industry: popularity erodes destinations, but rebuilding or developing them erodes some of their original charm.

— Eliza Ronalds-Hannon

[Santa Teresa, Costa Rica’s] unpaved road, which feels very much like a simple path through a jungle, is now lined with eco-friendly lodges, yoga retreats and trendy restaurants serving organic food…

After years of unfulfilled promises and delays, the local municipality started preliminary work on paving a three-mile stretch of road through town in June and indicated that another four-mile section would be paved at a later date. But many residents are skeptical that the road will be properly paved…

“Travelers don’t want the places they love to change,” said Daniel Fesenmaier, a professor at Temple University’s School of Tourism and Hospitality Management.

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