Luis Picado Nájera might know the Pacuare Lodge better than anyone. After all, he grew up here. His father, Luis Gerardo Picado Herrera, has worked with us for over 25 years as a builder and guide. The junior Luis was only six years old when his father began his tenure at our lodge, so he’s spent nearly his entire life under the canopy of our rainforest.
“When school was in session, I’d stay with my grandmother in Bajo del Tigre,” says Luis, referring to the village some 35 minutes away on foot. “But I’d be back at the lodge every weekend, and I’ve lived here basically my entire life”.
Luis is a multilingual naturalist guide. He speaks Cabecar, which is the local indigenous language; Spanish, the official language of Costa Rica; and English, which he learned “by listening to Pacuare Lodge clients and practicing.”
In the twelve years he’s worked at the lodge (and not just lived here), Luis has transitioned from working in maintenance to being a general guide who helped clients on canopy tours, rappelling excursions, and hikes. But his true passion is nature.
Costa Rica’s Flora and Fauna Are His Passion
“I like everything about being here,” Luis says about the lodge. “It feels like home. But I really love being out in nature. I love birds, reptiles, insects, trees, plants. I really love this … because I grew up here. All of my knowledge stems from growing up here,” he continues.
More than just a practical education, Luis is a formally trained naturalist guide. After graduating from high school he spent some time at Tortuguero National Park, where he took a 27-month-long course so that he could learn everything he could about being a guide. After this rigorous training, Luis was officially certified by the Costa Rica Tourism Board.
Outside of work, Luis enjoys spending time with his family. “I’m a bit of a homebody,” he says, “but I get out, too. I like fishing, driving around on my motorcycle, and exploring new places whenever I can.”
Work, however, remains one of Luis’s passions. “Some people don’t understand that I do what I truly love. They might ask why I’m doing this or whatever, but I’ve very focused, I know what I’m doing, and I love it.”
A Luxury Ecolodge in Costa Rica
Pacuare Lodge is a luxury ecolodge situated on the banks of the Pacuare River in Costa Rica. We carefully combine high-end accommodations and cuisine with unmatched service. At the same time, we strive daily to remain in harmony with nature and the surrounding communities.