Yalile Alpizar is the President and Owner of Costa Rica Luxury Estates. After working twelve years for international organizations, she started her real estate career in the year 1990, putting into practice advanced techniques in the areas or public relations, management, marketing and several more real estate related subjects. Besides many professional real estate courses and seminars, both local and international, she holds a Real Estate Certificate from the State University, where she graduated with honors.
She is the pioneer luxury real estate expert of Costa Rica, exclusively dedicated to the high-end market. It was back in 1997 when the company she leads closed on a multimillion deal by selling a 123 acres’ farm near the International Airport, to INTEL Corporation to install their Latin American Regional operations. This sole transaction changed the future of the whole country. Haute Residence caught up with Costa Rica Luxury Estate’s owner, Yalile Alpizar, to discuss how she became involved in real estate along with what makes her business unique compared to others:
How did you get involved in real estate?
After working for a period of 10 years with two different International non-profit organizations, I was traveling a lot and my kids were very small. Suddenly a friend who is a real estate agent asked me for help with taking care of clients who didn´t speak Spanish. I was fluent in English and that helped! I started helping her part-time and after a year of doing so, back in 1990, I decided to start my own real estate company, because I found out not only that I liked real estate very much, but that this career gave me the ability to organize my schedule in a way that I could spend more quality time with my family. My company was built on the basis of family first, and up to date, it is a family company, where my four daughters, a son and my husband, aside from their own professional careers in different multinational companies, are also involved in different areas of the company depending on their professional skills: marketing, financial analysis, audiovisual production, and professional photography, strategic planning, engineering of processes, management, etc.
My daughter Andrea is the co-Broker of the company, she has been by my side as a Realtor since 16 years ago. Along the years, she has taken care of highly sophisticated clientele and has handled million-dollar closings. She is taking the company to the next level, with the energy that her young years provide, and I am by her side supporting change and innovation at all levels.
It was not until last year when we decided to open our door to a few external real estate agents with expertise in different areas of the real estate market and this year we are introducing the Costa Rica Luxury Network, a luxury affinity marketing group of highly experienced luxury real estate professionals, working closely together to facilitate the best of the best in service and expertise to their high net worth private clients, under the unparalleled marketing platform of Costa Rica Luxury. The exclusive properties represented by members of the Costa Rica Luxury Network have a list price of $1,000,000 or more.
The Costa Rica Luxury Network is a partnership of like-minded and respected real estate professionals, aiming to create networking alliances to facilitate working together to serve the needs of pre-qualified affluent and high-net-worth customers in the upper-tier market, with first-class service, brand quality, and advanced marketing strategies.
What is unique about your business compared to others in Costa Rica?
Our almost 30 years of experience working with the most advanced marketing techniques in the high-end market of Costa Rica sets us apart from any other local real estate companies in the luxury market. We lead the market with innovation and creativity, and most realtors that have entered the high-end market, have just followed out track. We have built up credibility and trust based on maintaining the highest standards of ethics, and on the understanding that we are facilitators for creating life experiences and that for our clients, finding a luxury home in Costa Rica is much more than purchasing a piece of land with a house on top of it, it has to do with a change in lifestyle, an stage in their lives that will turn into a collection of unforgettable memories for them, their families and friends.
We consider ourselves very unique. Even though Costa Rica Luxury is a totally independent family-owned company, we became one of the most respected and reputable luxury real estate companies in Costa Rica based on many years of perseverance, discipline, and effort. We are always looking for innovative ways of doing our job, in order to provide our clients with the best service. Up to date, Costa Rica Luxury has the largest inventory of million-dollar homes for sale in Costa Rica.
Are you seeing more foreign buyers buying homes in Costa Rica now compared to 5 years ago? Where are they mostly coming from?
Yes, definitely. We are experiencing more inquiries from Europe as opposed to a few years ago when most of the inquiries that we received were coming from the USA and Canada. The fact that there are now direct flights from Costa Rica to the most important capitals in Europe, has turned into discovery trips for many Europeans who come to Costa Rica to visit and want to share with the friendly Ticos (Costa Ricans) and experience the Pura Vida lifestyle. Some of them will turn into potential buyers, looking to own a second home, a vacation home or a retirement home. Some will even move their company to Costa Rica and others are top-level executives from multinational companies or Embassies, who are transferred to the country as part of their appointments inside their organization.
How do you help buyers decide on where in Costa Rica is the perfect location for them?
Buyers in the upper end are highly educated buyers who will normally do extensive research before making a decision on where to live. When they contact us they are normally very clear about where they want to live, and the decision mainly focuses on living in the Central Valley surrounded by mountains, with all of its fancy residential areas and first-class services, or living in a beach town; because our tiny country has two oceans, the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, with thousands of beaches and hundreds of nice and relaxed beach towns in perfect harmony with nature. But we also have strong communications skills that allow us to guide our clients whenever is necessary for them to change their mind about the location so that they can find the perfect lifestyle that they are looking for during their relocation process. Given our many years in the market, we count with a large network of facilitators who come into place as part of an integral service that we provide to our clients.
What is your favorite part about being in the real estate industry?
My favorite part about being in this industry is the ability to connect with people from all over the world and speak the same language, because when it comes to finding a home, we all have the same feeling in our hearts, we want the best of the best for our families, and we are experts in helping our clients make their dreams come true, and accompanying them along the way as a local advisors and professional guides. During our many years in the luxury real estate market of Costa Rica we have helped clients coming from as far as China, Taiwan, the USA, Monaco, Spain, Germany, England, Canada, Australia, Russia, Mexico, Argentina, Austria, Hong Kong, India, Switzerland, Italy, among other countries, and each time we have experienced the same feeling.