Op-Ed: With persistence and support, adventure park earns worldwide fame
When ToroVerde was inaugurated in May 2010, many doubted it would be a success.
And as it grew from idea to reality, we had to hear many “No’s.” But each one gave us more strength to continue and to overcome these challenges.
Some of the negativity was understandable. Our adventure park is in the mountains, a great distance from San Juan. At that time there was the misconception that you could only do tourism in the metropolitan area. We had to fight and break with that stigma, to show that Puerto Rico has so much more to offer in each of its municipalities, even those in remote regions.
With a lot of persistence, effort and dedication, we started operations. At the beginning, the park had just three wagons and a tent to receive visitors. But even that was not an impediment as our dream began to take shape, prompting visits from locals and tourists.
One of the things that we consider most important and that fills us with pride, is contributing to the development and economic growth of the mountain area. Even more, we take great pride in the fact that all our employees are from the town of Orocovis.
Within a year of opening, we already had several awards from Travel + Leisure, Fox, the Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce, the Puerto Rico Sales and Marketing Executives Association (SME, in Spanish) and others. We began to receive visitors from all walks of life, from artists to princesses, and many television stations broadcast about us on both local and international networks.
In 2013, we moved into the building we are in today and opened a restaurant. In 2016, we obtained our first Guinness World Record with the Monster, which is the biggest zipline in the Americas. And in 2019 and 2020, we received even more Guinness World Records, one for having the longest zipline bike cable in the world, which has become a huge hit for us.
Like everything in life, teamwork is essential. We have worked with and gained support from the Puerto Rico Tourism Company since our inception. Also, our efforts have been bolstered by alliances with the island’s DMO, Discover Puerto Rico, once it was founded in 2018.
Discover Puerto Rico really helped to promote our brand internationally. Through their efforts, we have been visited by journalists and a diversity of other media that have introduced our brand to tourists from all over the world. That collaboration fueled our growth and has given us an enormous presence abroad. For us, they have been a key piece of our success as the largest adventure park in the Caribbean and Americas.
For destinations like ours, we need a DMO to introduce everything wonderful that Puerto Rico has to offer before the eyes of the world. Discover Puerto Rico provides a clear and focused message on the Island’s history, culture and attractions — and that has been so important in recent years, given the many struggles Puerto Rico has faced from hurricanes, earthquakes and, of course, COVID-19. Based on our experience, the DMO is necessary — more than ever — for the resurgence of foreign tourism in Puerto Rico.
Definitely, the success of any company is in consistency, in creating alliances, and in service. Create and achieve clear and common goals, to create unforgettable experiences for each of our visitors. We are proud to be one of the most visited tourist destinations on our island and we are honored to be ambassadors for Puerto Rico.