On a recent Tuesday morning, three of the U.S.’s most influential travel agents were hiking on a cliff-side trail overlooking the Pacific Ocean, gazing at the pristine beaches below and watching a group of howler monkeys in a nearby tree. Leading them were executives of Mukul, a not-quite-open 37-room $40 million luxury resort. The scenic tour was just the beginning salvo in a three-night, all-expenses-paid trip organized by the hotel to convince the travel agents to promote the property to their wealthy clients.
With its 24-hour butler service, lavish spa and a golf course created by the celebrated Scottish designer David McLay Kidd, it would seem an easy sell. But there is one complication. The resort is in Nicaragua, the second poorest country in the hemisphere, one with a war-torn history—and a place where none of the agents had ever sent a client, or been themselves.
The Wall Street Journal is now on-board with the launch of Mukul, it would appear. The video embedded on the linked page has an interesting discussion about how the high-end travel agents and other jet-setter confidantes will need to do some convincing of their clients in order to have them travel to a country like Nicaragua. Also interesting and not news to those living in Nicaragua, Mukul had to establish a training program that started from the basics to train the staff on things like what bidets are, how to pour coffee, make a bed, communicate with the guests, etc. Good stuff for those interested in following this new resort that is launching right now.