New York expat brings 21st century golf to La Fortuna

Frank Moreno puts the finishing touches on his great wall supervised by a panda, which represents China in his international miniature golf operation. Photo: Wendy Holt

A former New York City real estate broker will debut a miniature golf course in the Arenal area Thursday. The course is Reno’s Miniature Golf and Amusement Center in the heart of La Fortuna.  Owner Frank Moreno says he worked to bring the game into the 21st century. He said he has mp3 players, motion detectors and animated exhibits to amuse players as they try to complete the challenging 18-hole course.

Moreno put the entire 8,000 square feet under roof so play can continue in rain or shine. In addition, he has dedicated each hole to a different country, hence the international designation.

The Venezuelan hole features Angel Falls, and the United States is, of course, represented by New York City and the Brooklyn Bridge. Players are serenaded by “New York, New York” as they work this hole. The final hole, No. 18, is dedicated to Costa Rica with Volcán Arenal, a light display and an audible “Pura Vida.” He also has installed lasers for a light show.

Moreno said he saw the need to diversion because he says he’s from New York and needs an exciting life. Just looking at the volcanic mountain was not enough for him, he said. He is a little uncertain about how Costa Ricans will accept miniature golf. He has built a grandstand where spectators can watch the paying customers, and he hopes this will attract more local customers.

If miniature golf is a success, Moreno promises other amusements such as air hockey, foosball and indoor basketball. He said he has plenty of land for expansion. The Web site for the business is HERE.

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