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(506) 2223-1327                         Published Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014,  in Vol. 14, No. 10                          Email us
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Anti aging

Environmentalists reject blame for post-Crucitas ills
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Some 22 environmental organizations has issued a statement in which they decline to take responsibility for the collapse of the Las Crucitas open pit gold mine and the looming $1 billion arbitration demand.

The statement, released Tuesday under the banner of the Federación Costarricense para la Conservación del Ambiente said the real culprits in the poverty and difficult situations of residents in the northern zone are the central government and the municipality.

The environmentalists were replying to a La Nación news article that appeared Wednesday.

After a court annulled the concession granted to the Infinito Gold Ltda. of Calgary, Canada. A.M. Costa Rica published similar articles and letters critical of the position embraced by the environmentalists.

"Had the Las Crucitas project proceeded as originally planned, 2014 would have seen the commencement of actions necessary to implement a successful winding down of operations. Costa Rica would have by now received millions of dollars in the form of royalties and taxes, local people would be benefiting from employment and the local infrastructure would have received a much-needed cash infusion," said a reader last month.

The environmentalists' statement cites an article in the Costa Rican Constitution that says the state will secure the well being of the residents of the country

It is the executive branch and the municipality, respectively, that are directly responsible for the poverty that thousands of forgotten families are suffering and not the organizations or environmentalists that fought against the contaminating project, said the statement. It added that the state was responsible for the economic development and that the environmentalists were responsible for making sure that the development does not destroy the country's natural and social capital.

The main arguments against the Las Crucitas mine was that digging a pit to extract gold-bearing rock would kill protected trees and that the leach process would free dangerous chemicals into the environment.

Infinito is going to the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes seeking to be compensated because it held a valid concession for years and made investments to develop the mine. It will cite conflicting court decisions.

The mine project was backed by the Óscar Arias

Here are the organizations that signed the statement:

Alianza de Redes Ambientales
Alianza Nacional para la Defensa del Agua
Amigos del Pacuare,
Asoc. Preservacionista Flora y Fauna Silvestre
Asociación Ambiental del Norte de San Rafael
Asociación de Ecología Social
Asociación Proyectos Alternativos para el
        Desarrollo Social
Asociación Regional Centroamericana para el
        Agua y el Ambiente
Bloque Verde,
COECOCEIBA - Amigos de la Tierra,
Comité Bandera Azul Ecológica de San Miguel,
Coronado por la Naturaleza,
Federación Ecologista
Finca Amalur,
Fundación Arqueológica Los Sitios de Moravia,
Fundación Bandera Ecológica,
Oilwatch Mesoamérica,
Proyecto Biodiversidad de Costa Rica,
Red Centroamericana de Acción del Agua
Red de Coordinación en Biodiversidad,
Sociedad Científica Latinoamericana de
Unión Norte por la Vida

 Sánchez administration, and the project had received several favorable constitutional court decisions, but the Laura Chinchilla administration opposed the project particularly after environmentalists generated  a strong campaign against it.

It was the Tribunal Contencioso Administrativo that annulled the concession based on claims of irregularities in the approval process. The court also ordered that Arias and then-environmental minister  Roberto Dobles face criminal action.
Environmentalists have been consistent in their opposition to extractive industries. After a long fight, drilling for oil off the Caribbean coast was halted. Another concession to do exploratory drilling for petroleum on land in the northern zone also is facing government foot dragging.

Meanwhile, news sources elsewhere report that Nicaraguan gold now is the primary export of that country. The report said that production there increased 20 percent in 2013 with exports reaching $435.9 million, which is more than coffee or beef exports.

Retirement here can keep minds of seniors sharper
By the Retire NOW in Costa Rica news staff

A special benefit for retiring to Costa Rica is the likelihood that seniors will stay sharper longer.

A combination of factors promotes the mental health of seniors. The first, of course, is the weather and what researchers call seasonal affective disorder. For most residents in places where the seasons change, this is called the winter blues, a form of depression.  The remedy is sunlight, something that Costa Rica has plenty of even when the rains come in the afternoons during some months.

Another remedy for holding off dementia and other types of mental decline is a good diet. In Costa Rica fresh vegetables, fruits and preparations high in vitamins not only are available all year but they are on the low end of the budget. Someone  can end up with bags of wonderful vegetables, fruits and homemade pastries and sauces for under $10 at ferias or farmers markets.

Research also shows that mental challenges can keep the brain sharp. The very act of moving from one place to another requires the kind of metal agility that exercises the brain. And that does not even consider the additional challenges of moving from one culture to another.

And anyone who plans to spend retirement in Costa Rica is obligated to take another step, that is in learning Spanish.

There are plenty of schools and programs designed for the older adult. Even single seniors will find themselves accepted better into the culture with a little of the local language.

But then there is the additional advantage that research shows that speaking a second language may delay the onset of three types of dementias. In a study published in November, researchers found that people who spoke two languages developed 

dementia four and a half years later than people who only spoke one language.

“Our study is the first to report an advantage of speaking two languages in people who are unable to read, suggesting that a person’s level of education is not a sufficient explanation for this difference,” said study author Suvarna Alladi, who is with Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences in Hyderabad, India. He was quoted in a summary prepared by the American Academy of Neurology, which published the full report in its medical journal.

The subjects in the study all had one or another form of dementia.  Some 240 had Alzheimer’s disease, 189 had vascular dementia and 116 had frontotemporal dementia, with the remainder having dementia with Lewy bodies and mixed dementia, said the academy.

Bilingual adults had a later onset of these forms of dementia, according to the study. Researchers eliminated many other factors, such as education, gender, occupation or whether the subjects lived in the city or country.

But there is another big reason that the culture in Costa Rica protects seniors. The people here just like older adults, perhaps because many come from multi-generational families. Seniors get preference in bank lines, medical waiting rooms and in other situations second only to very pregnant women. Seniors also get to ride some buses for free and others at a discount.

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Professional Directory
A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.


Marco Cavallini & Associates
Dental Implants and Crowns

Dr. Marco A. Muñoz Cavallini has placed and restored
DR. Cavallini
Dr. Marco A. Muñoz Cavallini
over 17,000 dental implants since 1980. The Dr. Marco Muñoz Cavallini Dental Clinic, is recognized as one of the best practices in Dental Reconstruction, Dental Implant placement and Cosmetic Dentistry in Costa Rica and the World. For more information, visit us today at:


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Real estate agents and services

Colinas photo


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A fenced and gated project with the ex-pat hortaculturalist in mind. There are 88 clear-title hobby farms with water and electricity.  The layout is designed to provide ample space for your vegetable gardening ands fruit tree projects.
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Happy New Year ~ Feliz año nuevo
Check out our  2 new videos:
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2. Best beachfront deal in Costa Rica?
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sick captain
Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía y Segruidad Pública photo       
Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas crewmen help fishing boat captain Rigoberto Pérez Mora to the Golfito dock after taking him off his Quepos-registered boat 92 nautical miles at sea. The fisherman suffered an appendicitis attack.

Jungle Jam in Jacó reports
sales of tickets have doubled

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Jungle Jam, the music festival that returns to Jacó this weekend, has nearly doubled its pre-sale ticket numbers from a year ago.  Celebrating its fourth year with a star-heavy lineup, including Slightly Stoopid, Don Carlos, and G. Love & Friends, the most recent edition of this beachside festival is generating much attention.

Eric Freitas, the festival producer, also said he expects more tickets to be sold at the door than last year.

Docelunas Resort, which can accommodate about 2,000 people,  again plays host to the camping festival, allowing concert goers up-close access to the waves as well as nearby clubs. Tickets are listed at $149 for a standard four-day pass and $299 for a six-day camping and festival pass. The campground will open today, and music begins roaring over the sands on Thursday and will last until Sunday night.

Jungle Jam is becoming well-known for its acts playing impromptu jam sessions and on multiple nights. Late night sets begin at 2 a.m. and don't end until the sun rises. During the day, patrons are encouraged to tour Jacó and neighboring attractions to experiencing the country's more unique aspects, like surfing or zip-lining. For those who prefer not to rough it on the campgrounds, local hotel packages are still available.

Anti-dengue fines will require
action by Asamblea Legislativa

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Health ministry officials will have to go to the legislature to obtain permission to fine citizens who fail to comply with orders to eliminate breeding spots for dengue mosquitoes. That was the word from the ministry Tuesday.

Ministerio de Salud officials hope to be able to level fines as part of their anti-dengue campaign, but this requires a change in the law. The fines, it appears, also will cover other health hazards.

The ministry also is urging the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes to do something about impounded cars on ministry lots. These vehicles also present breeding spots for mosquitoes, the ministry said.

Economics ministry changes
its Web site to help consumer

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The economics ministry said that it has revised its Web page to make it better for users. The site contains interactive information with material for consumers.

The ministry, the Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Comercio, keeps track of prices as well as interest charges. There also are various regulations online.

The ministry got help from the European Foundation for Information Society to develop the new site, it said.

Our reader's opinion
Shell collecting a danger
to hermit crabs population

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

The article on the impact of shell collecting is very appropriate for the environmental threat of shell removal here in Costa Rica.  Most notably is the decline in hermit crabs on both coasts.  Twenty years ago there were massive numbers of hermit crabs on most beaches in Costa Rica.

That number has declined tremendously because of shell collecting by people visiting the beach.  The size of hermit crabs have declined as much as well.  There use to be a great number of large hermit crabs.  Now you can't find one over an inch long.  These crabs also supply many other sea creatures as well as land creatures with food.  Besides, removing sea shells also removes what some of the beach consists of.   Maybe the next time you visit the beach, take pictures of the shells and look at them in an album, instead of bringing them home and stuffing them away in some drawer or putting them out to collect dust.

Regarding the article about Mr.Beedle being bitten by a wandering spider.

The spider mentioned, Phoneurtia nigrventer is not a resident of Costa Rica.   A lesser toxic wandering spider species Phoneutria boliviensis is the species that lives in Costa Rica.  So Mr. Beedle was not bitten by the mentioned spider.  Part of his description of the effects of the bite resemble the wandering spider but there are usually other signs as well that he didn't experience.  The toxin of this genus of spider is a neurotoxin and he didn't have the other types of symptoms produced by neurotoxins.   I am truly sorry for his continued problem.  Fortunately for others this is a very rare case.

I wouldn't be too concerned about possible spider bites here in Costa Rica.  There are no known recorded deaths of spider bites here.   Most spiders don't bite people or don't inject the venom if they do.  So many people blame spider bites to be the bite they got while they were sleeping but never seeing the actual spider.   Almost always the bite was from some type of insect and not a spider.   It is a waste of energy for a spider to envenomate an animal it isn't going to eat, thus the reason many spiders won't bite humans or waste their venom when they do bite.

I would be more concerned about the ladrones (thieves) lurking or entering my house compared to the spiders that lurk or enter my house.
Henry Kantrowitz
Punta Leona.

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Third News Page
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 10
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Central American dance group will perform Sunday
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A Central American dance group, a project of the Instituto Goethe, will perform Sunday at 6 p.m. in San José. This is an organization of young people backed by the Sistema de Integración Centroamericana.

German embassies and cultural centers are supporting the group's tour through Central America, Locally support is from the Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud, Danza Universitaria of the Universidad de Costa Rica in San Pedro and the Escuela de Danza of the Universidad Nacional in Heredia.

The dancers are called the Compañía de Danza Centroamericana y el Caribe. There are 14 dancers from Central America and the Dominican Republic. The performance here will be in the ministry's Teatro de la Danza at 6 p.m. The theater is in the Centro Nacional de la Cultura, the ministry building, on Avenida 7.
Compañía de Danza Centroamericana y el Caribe photo
At an earlier performance.

One goal of the dance group is to promote the exchange of cultural talent and social integration in the framework of contemporary dance, said an announcement. Two of the dancers are from Costa Rica.

Traffic deaths reported to be 11 percent fewer than 2012
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Last year closed with 294 road deaths, and highway officials are reporting that the toll was 11 percent lower than the 330 who died in 2012.

Some 34 of the deaths took place in December, said the Ministerio de Obras Pública y Transportes. That was nearly a record for the month.

The road toll is not complete because the statistics only count
those persons who died at the scene of an accident. Those who died later in a hospital are not counted.

Still, the ministry said there was a 43 percent reduction in the number of fatalities due to drunk driving with just 22 cases.

In all 88 motorcyclists or passengers died in the year as well as 59 pedestrians. That's 50 percent of the death toll.

Traffic officials credited various educational programs and traffic police for the reduction.

Weather agency warns of approaching cold front and high winds
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A cold front is expected to sweep into the country tonight and early Thursday, and average temperatures are expected to dip about two to three degrees C.

That is not a big deal, but the Instituto Meteorológico Nacional said that the front will be accompanied by high winds, perhaps as much as 60 to 80 kph or about 37 to 50 mph. The weather agency warned of falling limbs and other objects.

It also issued a warning for light planes that might be affected 
by gusts. Rain up to two inches also is expected along the Caribbean coast and the northern zone with some rain perhaps entering the Central Valley, the forecast said.

Overnight temperatures in the Central Valley have been around 16 to 17 degrees C. that is in the low 60s F. 

A three-degree drop might bring the temperature to 13 C or about 55 degrees F.

These cooler conditions are expected to last through Saturday, the institute said.


You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 10
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Two new papers consider growing unpopularity of drone warfare
By the Taylor & Francis Group news services

Two new papers published in the latest volume of "Dynamics of Asymmetric Conflict" explore the use of drones in military operations. The articles highlight increasing levels of disapproval of the use of drones in recent U.S. polls and suggest that drone warfare may be leading to an emphasis on tactical wins over long-term strategic victories.

Tom McCauley’s “U.S. Public Support for Drone Strikes against Asymmetric Enemies Abroad: Poll Trends in 2013” shows that, while a strong majority of U.S. citizens are in favor of using drones against terrorists in foreign lands, a small and increasing minority are against their use.  In contrast, majorities in most countries are opposed to U.S. drone attacks against terrorists. 

McCauley notes "Should drones’ unpopularity in the United States continue to increase, and their unpopularity in other countries persist, they may well become politically impractical, no matter how convenient and cost-effective the technology may be."

Metin Gurcan’s “Drone Warfare and Contemporary Strategy Making: Does
the Tail Wag the Dog?” argues that increasing use of drones in asymmetric conflict is reversing the dominance of strategy over tactics and may be undermining civilian control of the military.

Gurcan notes that while there are a number of advantages to using drones, such as effectiveness at removing key targets and avoidance of friendly casualties, they may also increase the power of extremists amongst civilian populations by creating a siege mentality. He notes that breaking the power of extremists does not rest on the killing or capture of high-value targets, rather it depends on removing their power to intimidate – something that drone strikes cannot do. This article also reveals that concerns about military drones are salient not just for civilians, but even for army officers such as Gurcan. 

The use of drones in U.S. military operations has increased rapidly in the last decade, with the US annual budget for drones growing from $1.9 billion in 2006 to $5.1 billion in 2011. This development has sparked considerable debate in countries that operate drones and in populaces living with them, and has resulted in a backlash in some audiences. The two papers raise issues about military use of drones that will likely grow in years to come.

Vacation, travel and hospitality

Largest art gallery in Guanacaste
Drop in to see some of Costa Rica's finest art
at the largest gallery in Guanacaste.

The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is a great place to find quality remembrances of Costa Rica to take home or to decorate your home or office in Costa Rica.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever.  With more than 60 artists on exhibit and fine art in 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we are easy to locate just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport. Visit our Web site at
or contact us by email:   
Gallery hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tel. 2667-0592 / 8386-6872; U.S. telephone 702-953-7073. International shipping available.

Costa Rica’s #1 Time –Tested Relocation/Retirement Tours
Christopher Howard's Award-winning Combination Relocation/Retirement Tour. NO other retirement tour offers MORE options...MORE areas visited, MORE information, MORE people just like you who have made the move and a LONGER
fact-filled tour for your money. Winner of the 2010 Latin America-Asia Travel Excellence Award for the most UNIQUE and OUTSTANDING tour in Latin America. This  is the ONLY relocation/retirement tour really APPROVED with a LEGAL tour guide to operate in Costa Rica by the government’s Institute of Tourism ICT (license number DL-658-2004) in 2004. ALL tours are personally led by Christopher Howard, the author of the perennial best-selling ”New Golden Door to
Christ Howard with Max
Retirement and Living in Costa Rica,” the MOST read authority on living and retiring in Costa Rica,  and who has personally helped over 10,000 people with ALL BUDGETS relocate SUCCESSFULLY over the last 35 years. CUSTOM TAILOR-MADE TOURS are also available for people with special needs or who can’t take one of our fixed-date tours. ALL tours include EXTENSIVE touring and a highly informative SEMINAR by the country’s most renowned EXPERTS in their respective fields. Also visit: Live in Costa Rica to check out our NEW tour prices and specials.  Customer satisfaction 100% guaranteed! MY REFERENCES.

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*FREE BONUS all people who sign up for the tour receive a FREE copy of the 16th edition of  the bestseller “New Golden Door to Retirement and Living in Costa Rica. At the conclusion of the tour they also receive FREE eBook copies of Christopher Howard’s other one-of-a-kind  bestsellers “Official Guide to Costa Rican Spanish,” “The Official Guide to Real Estate In Costa Rica” and “The Official Guide to Costa Rica’s Legal System for Tontos (dumbells).” Almost 2,000 pages of INVALUABLE material in all!

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Anywhere Costa Rica plans custom vacations, and has the most comprehensive travel services in the country including travel guides, resorts and vacation homes,
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The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

 (as reported by the moving companies)
Visit many rental options to actually experience the price/amenity options available in more of the areas chosen by Expats for security, comfort, and quality of life.
Exotic gardens next to one
of our patios

Meet many Expats who are willing to share their experiences and how the tour has value long after the “lust” wears off.
See how to choose a Retirement tour video by past guest!

Ask the others what you get for your money, and then compare the quality of accommodations, quality, quantity and variety of food and drink to measure the best value for your money.  Learn how others “talk the talk” and learn who really can “walk the walk
Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
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Lovely cottage on private coffee farm. One spacious bedroom, one bath, office room/spare room with high speed WiFi internet, fully equipped kitchen, phone  line, balcony with beautiful view, especially at  night with
coffee retreat
 the far off lights of San José. Farm is gated and guarded, private and peaceful. Owner on-site. Sarchi is a quiet and safe small town about 30-40 min from the airport, a perfect base to explore from and also get a feel for normal, day-to-day Tico life. Rental is $575 per month, (Longer term rent is negotiable) All utilities included. Sorry, NO PETS. Contact

You must see this!
We are renting our two-story townhouse in San Rafael, Escazú, near the Paco Center. Three bedrooms with a large TV area, 2.5 baths. Bathtub in the master.  Well furnished even down to the computer desks and flat screen TVs. Fully equipped kitchen, including pots and pans,  plus laundry room with washer and dryer. Parking for two vehicles. Basic cable included. Guarded entrance and 24-hour security. Call from the U.S.: 954-716-5219 English or Spanish. Local in Costa Rica call: 8638-7440 but Spanish only or email for questions/more information. Photos can be seen HERE!

Test Drive Costa Rica
Asuncion de Belen. Home in exclusive Residencial La Jolla.  Gated community with controlled access,  security 24/7. Resort swimming pool and gym. Spacious and elegant finishes, private jacuzzi and social areas. 3 bedrooms. 2.5 baths.  Private gardens. Conveniently located close to airport, shopping, bilingual schools, Intel and Duty Free Zones. 322m2 on 249m2 corner lot. Lease with purchase option  $3,400/ $428,000 USD Contact owner for details:

prime properties
We have many prime properties available for long-term rentals.
Santa Ana

MONTHLY $800 TO $1,200

Villas Casa Loma has everything you are looking for.  Best vistas, climate, value.  Four unique homes in a secure private compound on a ridge near Alajuela overlooking the entire Central Valley.  Two are available fully furnished and equipped, each a complete home accommodating 4 persons in two bedrooms with ensuite baths.  Pool, rancho, mirador, other features.  Ask about part-month rates.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.

Beautiful 2-bedroom 2-bathroom American-style apartments with an elevator to your front door in a secure building located in Gringo Gulch the American Section of downtown San José. Costa Rica. Located between the Hotel Del Rey, the Hotel Mona Lisa and the Sportsman's Lodge and The Zona Blue (AKA) Little Habana across the street from Harry's Poas Bar, and next to the Holiday Inn.
apartment view
 There are 15 restaurants and American- style bars on this block and four supermarkets within a few blocks. There are 5 casinos within 2 blocks and dozens of hotels around this apartment. Included in your rental price, fast Internet, the best they have in Costa Rica, cable TV with 80
stations, water, washer and dryer. All you pay extra for is electricity. You have your own meter and receive a bill from the electric company every month.  This apartment has a American-style hot water system, hot water in both bathrooms and the kitchen. There is a 25-foot balcony to sit on and watch the people in San José walk by. The neighborhood Barrio Amón is the safest in San José For photos and more information contact:

Tropical Homes of Costa Rica is offering the best selection of vacation homes, condos and long-term rental homes in Playa Flamingo, Playa Potrero and Playa Brasilito on  the Pacific Gold Coast of Guanacaste. A wide selection of private residencies is providing an excellent choice for your stay in this beautiful part 
of Costa Rica. We are offering homes for every budget and every need. Please visit our Web page at or contact us at or call at (506) 2654-5442.

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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 10
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Global recovery is reported
led by advanced economies,

 By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

The global recovery is gaining momentum according to new projections by the World Bank.  But unlike previous years, the World Bank says growth in 2014 is likely to be driven in large part by high income countries.
Five years after the financial crisis the World Bank says the global economy has reached a turning point led by advanced economies.  That’s especially true of the United States, says Andrew Burns, lead author of the World Bank’s Global Economic Prospects.
“For the first time in five years, high income countries are accelerating. They’re going to be contributing to global growth in a way that they haven’t for some time.  That’s going to be good for developing countries,” says Burns.
The World Bank projects the U.S. economy will expand from 1.8 percent last year to about 2.8 percent in 2014.  Bank chief economist Kaushik Basu expects a similar story in Europe which emerged from recession last year.
“The latest estimates show Europe grew by minus 0.4 percent, but we expect this to turn positive, gently positive. 1.1 is not huge growth but given Europe’s difficulties over the last six years, this is indeed good news,” says Basu.
Although political instability continues to pose downside risks for parts of North Africa and the Middle East, the biggest question mark remains the impact of the U.S. central bank’s decision to scale back monetary stimulus.
But Basu says the effects are likely to be mild because many countries started feeling the impact of higher interest rates after the Fed signaled its intentions by the middle of 2013.
“We saw that in South Africa, in Indonesia, in India, where the exchange rate was crashing around.  So I feel actually, at one level, a lot of the adjustment has already taken place.  So when the tapering actually began as it now has from 85 billion dollars a month to 75,  it’s actually not having that much of an effect because part of the effect has already taken place,” says Basu.
Growth in China, still the world’s fastest growing economy, is expected to remain steady at 7.7 percent.
But Basu says he is most excited about prospects for the sub-Saharan regions of Africa projected to grow 5.3 percent in 2014.

Moscow rejects U.S. reporter
who has been critical of regime

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

In a move reminiscent of the Cold War, Russia has barred entry to an American journalist who had been living and working in Moscow.

David Satter, a veteran foreign correspondent working for U.S.-funded Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty, says he was notified in December that his request for a Russian visa had been approved. 

However, he says he was later told by an official at the Russian Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine, where he had gone to renew his visa, that "the competent organs" in Russia had decided his presence in the country was undesirable and that he would be barred from entry.

Russia's foreign ministry said in a statement Tuesday that Satter was banned from entering the country for five years.

The ministry said Satter had entered Russia last Nov. 21 but failed to get a multi-entry visa immediately, as Russian law requires. According to the ministry, he applied for a multi-entry visa on Nov. 26, but his application was denied because he had been present in Russia illegally"from Nov. 22 to Nov. 26.

On Nov. 29, a Moscow court ordered that Satter be fined and deported, the Russian foreign ministry statement said.

Satter, whose writing is highly critical of what he sees as the Russian government's authoritarianism and corruption, said Tuesday in an interview via Skype from London that he thought the actions against him were politically motivated and evidence that the Russian regime is losing its confidence.

"I believe that to a certain extent they understand that the ground under their feet is not as secure as it once was, and they don't want journalists in Moscow who are capable of understanding what's happening in the country," said Satter.

Kevin Klose,  Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty president, said Monday  that the U.S. Embassy in Moscow had been informed about the action against Satter and lodged a formal diplomatic protest.

Satter, who worked as the Moscow correspondent for the Financial Times newspaper in the late 1970s and early 1980s, wrote a book titled "Darkness at Dawn; The Rise of the Russian Criminal State," which was published in 2003.

In it, he argued there was overwhelming evidence that the federal security service, Russia's main domestic security agency, was behind a series of bombings of apartment buildings in Moscow and other cities in 1999, which killed hundreds of people.

Those blasts, which Russian officials, including then Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, blamed on Chechen terrorists, were followed by post-Soviet Russia's second large-scale military intervention in Chechnya.

Indian diplomat's lawyers
seeks immunity in court

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

A lawyer for Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade Tuesday asked a U.S. judge to throw out immigration and employment charges against her that led to a major diplomatic spat between the United States and India.
The lawyer, Daniel Arshack, argued that Khobragade's diplomatic status, granted by the State Department last week as part of a deal allowing her to leave the country, gave her absolute immunity from prosecution, even for incidents that allegedly occurred before her accreditation.
The U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan, which indicted Khobragade on Thursday, did not immediately comment on the filing.
Khobragade, a U.S.-based consular official, was arrested Dec. 12 and accused of underpaying her housekeeper. News of her arrest and a subsequent strip search provoked protests in India and strained ties between the two countries.
She was accredited as a member of India's mission to the United Nations Wednesday, one day before she was indicted and asked to leave the country.
In his motion Tuesday, Arshack said the State Department's own guidance for law enforcement agencies states that immunity extends to incidents that occurred prior to the granting of that immunity. Thus, he said, the case against Khobragade is a nullity and should be dismissed.
If Judge Shira Scheindlin dismisses the indictment, that would presumably permit Khobragade, whose husband and children are U.S. citizens, to travel freely to the United States.
Prosecutors had said last week charges would remain pending against Khobragade until such time as she can be brought to court to face them.
State Department officials have said they do not believe her immunity is retroactive. In a press briefing Friday, spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Khobragade would face prosecution if she returned to the United States.
“Her accreditation in this case to the U.N. does not remove existing charges,” Psaki said. “In addition, now that she has left the United States, she no longer enjoys immunity.”

Auto show displays new vigor
in U.S. vehicle manufacturing

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

U.S. automakers have much to celebrate at this year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

Fueled by growing sales and increased production, the industry has made a dramatic turnaround since hovering on the brink of collapse less than five years ago.

Facing bankruptcy in 2009, Chrysler was grappling with the fate of its assets, including the Sterling Heights Assembly Plant where Charles Archard worked.

“Me and my wife both worked in the plant," Archard said. "She took the buyout. I stayed there. But there was a 50/50 chance that it could have went bankrupt. I took that chance.”

It paid off. Chrysler not only reversed its decision to close Sterling Heights, but also added another shift. At this year’s North American International Auto Show, the company announced that workers like Archard will soon be building a new mid-size sedan at the plant, which will offer job security for the foreseeable future.

“And then we found out a billion dollars is going to be put into the plant for new vehicles and everything, so it was great,” Archard said.

Sen. Debbie Stabenow, a Democrat who represents the state of Michigan, said the Chrysler announcement is an example of how the U.S. auto industry's success is reflected in this year’s auto show.

“We’re back. This auto industry, the home team from Michigan, is back," Sen. Stabenow said. “Today we are seeing not only fuel economy, but great engineering, design, technology.”

One example of the change was evident at an event for General Motor’s Chevrolet brand. Instead of showcasing smaller, fuel-efficient cars, the automaker rolled out a new version of the snazzy Chevrolet Corvette, a high performance car that consumes a lot of gas and carries a high price tag.

“I think you’re going to find that we definitely are profiling our newest, latest, greatest, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t have a lot of emphasis on fuel efficiency across the board,” said Christi Landy of General Motors.

In fact, Landy says sales of fuel-efficient compacts like the Chevrolet Spark and Sonic are up 10 percent this year from last year.

At a news conference for Chevrolet’s competitor, Ford, CEO Alan Mulally predicted an even greater market for such vehicles.

“We expect small vehicles to represent more than half of our total global sales by the end of this decade," Mulally said, "with nearly one third of all of our sales coming from Asia Pacific.”

That’s good news for Ford workers.  But the state of Michigan, home of the U.S. auto industry, still has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country about 9 percent. 

While some jobs are returning as the industry rebounds, it's only a fraction of the number of jobs lost during the region’s long economic decline.

Obama seeking to rally support
in State of Union talk Jan. 28

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

This year, 2014, will be a busy political one in the United States. President Barack Obama will outline his policy priorities when he delivers his State of the Union address on Jan. 28. In November, voters will head to the polls to elect a new Congress, an outcome with potentially enormous political stakes for the president, as well as for lawmakers from both major political parties.

During last year's State of the Union address, Obama enjoyed a warm reception, fresh off his 2012 re-election victory.

“There is much progress to report,” said the president.

But 2013 proved to be a difficult political year for the president, primarily because of the rocky launch of his health care law.

Obama hopes to shift the focus this year to narrowing the income gap between the very rich and the middle class.

“In other words, we have got to make sure that this recovery leaves nobody behind and we have got a lot of work to do on that front,” he said.

Republicans are expected to continue to hammer away at the president’s health care law this year, said strategist Ron Bonjean. “It is health care at this point. It is the incompetence going on within the Obama administration on how that is being handled.”

Slowing the growth of social welfare programs also is a Republican priority, according to House Speaker John Boehner.

“The president refuses, and Democrats, refuse to discuss changes to those programs unless Republicans are willing to raise taxes. We are not going to raise taxes,” said Boehner.

Expect Obama to highlight some encouraging signs in the U.S. economy and the issue of income disparity, said Thomas Mann of the Brookings Institution.

“How is the economy doing, and that is both jobs and growth and wages. But behind that is economic inequality and the Two Americas issue,” said Mann.

Second-term presidents often have trouble regaining their political clout, said analyst John Fortier. “Usually presidents see their popularity ebb away a bit. They are often facing a Congress of the other party or at least part of the Congress, and so the president does not have the ability to work his agenda through the Congress as he did at the beginning of his first term.”

Also, Fortier added that political battles leading up to the November congressional elections are likely to dominate this year.

“The long-term trend in midterm elections is that they go against the president. I think the big question for Republicans is can they get enough seats to win the Senate?” said Fortier.

All 435 seats in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives will be at stake this year, along with one-third of the Democratically controlled Senate and 36 state governorships.

Congressional negotiators
reach agreement on budget

 By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

Negotiators in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate have reached an agreement on a trillion-dollar budget that would fund the federal government through September, a deal that potentially avoids another government shutdown.

President Barack Obama said Tuesday he is very pleased at the accord and urged Congress to quickly pass the compromise.

The deal was announced late Monday by Sen. Barbara Mikulski, a Democrat and the chairwoman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Rep. Harold Rogers, her counterpart in the Republican-controlled House. 

The detailed spending plan is the result of an agreement reached in December between the House and Senate that would fund the federal government for the next two years.  That agreement was crafted in the aftermath of a 16-day government shutdown back in October.

The new spending bill eliminates the deep automatic spending cuts, known as sequestration, that affected both domestic and military programs last year.  The measure includes an extra $92 billion to fund overseas military operations, much of it for the war in Afghanistan.  It also reverses a cut in pension payments to disabled military veterans and survivors. 

The measure eliminates funding for high-speed rail projects supported by Obama, as well as money to allow the United States to meet its commitments to the International Monetary Fund.

But Republicans failed to cut funding for the Affordable Care Act, the president's signature domestic legislation, although they managed to trim $1 billion from a public health fund established under the law. 

The federal government is currently operating under a temporary spending bill that expires Wednesday.  Lawmakers are expected to pass another short-term bill that would finance the government for a few days until the new comprehensive bill is approved by Congress and signed into law by President Obama.  

Los Angeles bell refurbished
to the delight of local Koreans

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

Over the years, what's known to some South Koreans as the West Coast Statue of Liberty had fallen into disrepair. The Korean Friendship Bell was a gift from Seoul to the American people for the U.S. bicentennial.  It's become a source of pride for the area's Korean-Americans.

Now, thanks to a team of artisans, the bell has been restored to its former glory.

The restoration of The Korean Friendship Bell is long overdue, if you ask Los Angeles resident Angelic Lee.

“I’m so happy. Good to see again,” she said.

In 1976, to mark the U.S. bicentennial, the Republic of Korea presented the United States with the 18,000-kilogram bronze bell.

“Many Korean American immigrants who come here, often tell me, when they feel homesick, this is the place that they think of and come and visit,” said Ernest Lee, a member of the Korean Friendship Bell Committee. 

Lee says this home away from home for many Koreans living in Los Angeles began to deteriorate after years of winter rains, exposure to salty ocean air, and improper maintenance. Korean Consul General, Yeon Sung Shin, remembers when he first saw the bell three years ago.

“The bell was not in good shape. The bell was on the ground," he said. "Disconnected. It was not properly cared for at all.”

But thanks to a large donation and artistic support from the Republic of Korea, the city of Los Angeles was able to restore the bell to its former glory.  Korean Bell Master Chai Dong-Hey and several South Korean artisans worked on the project for months.

“My portion is only a very small portion," Hey said. "After today, the Korean Friendship Bell committee will be responsible for its safety. Each and every day.”

For the Korean bell master, hearing the bell ring during the rededication ceremony is personal.

“It’s very great to hear because my teacher created it 38 years ago," he said. "And now I am able to fix it. It makes me very happy.”

Bells are symbolic in Korean culture, says Consul General Shin.

“This is the soul of Korean people. The history of Korean people. Heart of Korean people," he said. "Whatever issues you may talk about patriotism, respect for parents, friendship, whatever this can be symbolized through the sound of the bell.”

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti made a personal commitment to ensure the Korean Friendship Bell never falls into disrepair again.

“We put up some physical barriers for birds. We’ve made sure that there is maintenance that we can have around," he said. "So I feel very confident that we will. And it’s the very least that we could do for the kind gift, a second time, from the Korean people.”

The Korean Friendship Bell rings only five times a year, including America's Independence Day, July 4, and Aug. 15,  Korean Liberation Day.

French president stays mum
on reports linking him to actress

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services 

French President Francois Hollande brushed away questions Tuesday about an alleged affair with an actress and unveiled moves to ease company taxes, cut labor charges and trim France's high public spending to revive a stagnant economy.
He called for France and Germany to harmonize corporate taxation and create a joint venture to manage the transition to renewable energy, modeled on European plane giant Airbus.
With over 500 journalists packed into the Elysee Palace ballroom for a New Year news conference, the Socialist leader, deeply unpopular with voters, made no mention of controversy about his private life in a 30-minute introductory speech and defiantly stonewalled on the subject for the next two hours.
His official partner, Valerie Trierweiler, is in hospital recovering from shock after a celebrity magazine published pictures of what it said was Hollande wearing a motorcycle helmet visiting actress Julie Gayet for nocturnal trysts.
“Everyone in their personal life can face trials. That is our case,” Hollande said when a French reporter ventured a coy first question about Ms. Trierweiler's future as first lady.
Hollande said he would clarify the issue before a visit to the United States Feb. 9, on which Ms. Trierweiler had been due to accompany him.
The president said he had chosen not to sue the magazine Closer for invading his privacy because as head of state he was immune from being sued himself and did not want to create a double standard. He did not deny the reported affair.
The French are traditionally indulgent of their leaders' sexual indiscretions, and an opinion poll on Sunday showed an overwhelming majority said it did not change their view of Hollande, who was entitled to privacy in his personal life.
Before the embarrassing publication, he had become the least popular French president in modern times, largely due to tax increases, recession and high unemployment, compounded by a reputation for dithering.
Hollande sought to erase that image and adopt the clothes of a social democratic reformer as he set out a responsibility pact to cut the tax and regulatory burden on companies in return for commitments to create jobs and boost training. As part of that drive, employers will no longer fund family allowances via payroll taxes from 2017.
He promised a further 50 billion euros ($68 billion) in spending cuts in 2015-17 on top of a planned 14 billion this year, saying they could be achieved by making national and local government more efficient while preserving France's generous social model.
In first reactions, market economists welcomed the change in tone but were more measured on the content, noting the new moves represented a slight deepening of already planned cuts and that some funding details remained unclear.
Ion-Marc Valahu, fund manager at Geneva-based Clairinvest, said: “At least he's acknowledged that there are issues that need to be solved for the economy to recover, but they need to do a lot more to slow down the pace of job destruction. He can say what he wants, but 2017 is a long way to go.”
Hollande, who defied street protests to legalize gay marriage last year, signaled he was ready for a new controversy by announcing plans for a law allowing terminally ill patients to end their lives under strict controls.
Hollande defended the European Union ahead of European Parliament elections in May and said he would not let Eurosceptics who want to pull France out of the euro prevail.
A recent poll suggested the anti-EU far-right National Front could come first in the European election in France, often used to register a protest vote, ahead of both the mainstream conservative opposition and the Socialists.

Test to screen older memories
is now cheap, self-administered

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

A new study confirms that a self-administered, paper-and-pen test can be a reliable tool to screen large numbers of older adults for possible memory and thinking problems.

Tests that evaluate a person’s cognitive functioning, how they think and remember, are not new. But Douglas Scharre, who heads the Memory Disorders Research Center at Ohio State University, says most of these tests require a trained administrator, so they can be expensive. And some people are uncomfortable being asked questions face-to-face when they may not know the answer.

“The point was to do a self-administered test so that it would be easy for the physicians," Scharre said. "And the hope was that we could identify people sooner, and then get them evaluated, treated much sooner than was currently being done.”

Researchers previously found that the Self-Administered Gerocognitive Examination test can be a reliable screening tool. In a new research paper, Scharre and his colleagues report the test could be used effectively for mass screenings, such as at health fairs or community events.

Giving the test does not require any experts or fancy equipment, just a pen and the four-page test form that asks straightforward questions designed to evaluate a variety of brain functions.

“The questions include orientation questions - you know, day and date, things like that. Naming some objects...some calculations,” Scharre said. “Visual-spatial part of the brain: measuring how you can draw things. Plus memory and more...and it takes less than 15 minutes to complete."

Scharre stresses that the test is designed to screen for possible cognitive problems among older adults. It is not a test for Alzheimer's disease or any other specific problem.

“So, it is not a diagnostic test for any condition. It just sort of measures how you are thinking.”

The test is free, and is starting to be made available in other languages, as well as English.

Stable spoon compensates
for jerks due to Parkinson's

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

One of the biggest challenges for people living with Parkinson’s is the difficulty to feed themselves, due to the shaking tremors associated with the disease. But help might be on the way. A new, high-tech, smart spoon promises to stabilize the vibrations.

LiftLabs, based in San Francisco, California, has developed a small device that tracks and compensates for small vibrations and tremors.

Anupam Pathak, the founder and CEO of LiftLabs, explained that the technology behind Liftware is similar to the image stabilization feature in high end cameras.

“What we have done is taken that same concept and applied it to a handheld device, that would help people with a lot larger jitters," said Pathak. "So somebody with a neurological disorder might be moving up to an inch in magnitude. There is a little computer inside that is running an algorithm, that would basically sense the person’s motion, determine if that was intentional or unintended, and if it was unintended, move opposite to what that motion does.”

The result is that the $295 device remains smooth and level, despite the movement of the user’s arm or hand. Food that normally would fly off remains on the spoon.

“Being able to see somebody eat on their own for the first time, or even just eat better, has been a hugely impactful thing,” said Pathak.

A spoon is currently the only attachment for the Liftware device, but Pathak promises that more attachments - like a deeper soup spoon and a fork - will be available soon.
Real estate-related services (paid category)

Project completion specialists
Casa del pacifico logo
Pacifica living
A turnkey home and project completion agency devoted to creative vision and flawless execution. We provide a single, solid and dedicated point of contact for the duration of your real estate project, specializing in:

                      • Building completion services
                      • Interior design & decoration
                      • Custom furniture design & manufacturing.

Our primary goal is to assist our clients with a smooth transition to occupancy while providing highly personalized and distinctive services. We have refined the process to be a hassle free experience, especially valuable for clients who live abroad. We customize to suit each client’s personal taste, lifestyle and budget.
Serving region for 10 years.
We regularly exceed client expectations. We guarantee it.
Cell phone: (506) - 8707-8008
Office phone: (506) - 2288-5644

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

Swimming pool at night
A Buyer’s Broker offering the best
of Costa Rica Real Estate.

For those looking for quality properties and service at quality prices. Central Valley Rentals. Offering honesty, experience and knowledge. Your Villa Real Expert. Call us now  Toll Free (877) 845-4533. In Costa Rica 2228-5961 or 8339-2112.

Re/Max, the Pacific coast expert
Re/Max offers comprehensive Costa Rica Real Estate, vacation rental and relocation services. Our award-winning team is the largest in the country, and can show you the best lifestyle and financial investment properties in the most desirable locations including prime real estate in Tamarindo, Langosta, Conchal, Flamingo, Pinilla, Coco, Hermosa and Playa Panama.  Give us a call in Costa Rica at 506-2653-0073, or toll free from the U.S. and Canada 1-800-385-5930. Re/Max, the name you trust for the finest real estate services in Costa Rica.

Moran Arenal
Lake Arenal, Costa Rica
The undiscovered jewel of Central America, 35 square miles of blue, pristine, clear water ideal for fishing, swimming, boating, Real estate values still low.
Great lake front, river front land, farms, homes, condos and commercial property. Some with owner financing
This is far and away the most beautiful place in all Central America — cool climate. Try our two-day, all-inclusive discovery tour for $299.

Check with our Web site at
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
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Costa Rica,

Central America
Houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
western Central Valley.
Great climate
and safe communities.

Visit our Web Site:

English: (Cristian Arce)
(506) 8309-0173  
English:  (Luis Arce)
(506) 7100-8489  
 Español: (Luis G. Jiménez)
  (506) 8707-4016  
Grecia 794
This is the BIGGEST DEAL of the month now at $850.000: HERE!
30,000 square meters of land and 750 square-meters of construction.
Grecia 792
300 square meters of land, 195 square meters of construction HERE
Grecia 807
  18,000 square meters of land and 300 square meters of construction. HERE!
  Send us your request to our email:

Real estate for sale (paid category)

St. Michael
Ocean View estates inside a gated community from $5.94 M2.  Properties start at 39K. NO HOA FEES.  Community salt water modern waterfall swimming pools, organic vegetable gardens, exotic flower gardens, food forest, mature orchards, fresh fish from aquaponics, stables, community center, and much more.  Each lot comes with an edible landscaping including pineapples, plantains, papayas, guanabanas, bananas, and more.  Most lots already have mature mango, lemon, orange, or caimito trees.  This is the most secure community in CR with multiple sources of water, electric, and high \[speed internet.

Cahuita estate
Beach house in Cahuita for sale
2,000-sq. ft. house, 2 bedrooms. 2 baths. With incredible view of sea.  House has beautiful hardwood open upstairs deck. Teakwood floor upstairs. CB and ceramic downstairs, Very well built with beautiful hardwoods upstairs.  Oval bathtub, hand painted ceramic sinks  The view is through 240 meters of jungle and coconut trees to the beach. The beach in front is perfect and quiet. Very secure area. Property located adjacent to our wildlife sanctuary and botanical gardens. Great group of neighbors from U.S.A.,  Italy, Holland, Sweden, etc. This very private property is owned by Todd Scottland for more then  35 years. Taxes are paid up to date. This is a gem of a house. Must see!  Price  $205,000.00.  Email to: Email for more photos.
Phone 2755-0014 or cell phone 8610-0490.

Esparza home
Esparza, Puntarenas
Stunning open concept contemporary home 1800 square feet, high end finishing set in tranquil rural 1.3 acres of fruit trees and tropical flowers. Separate guest suite, artist studio, workshop, carport, electric gate.  Close to two international airports, surfing, fishing, golfing and shopping. More photos here:
Sale for $239.000 Contact:

Ojochal montage
Ojochal Paradise
Tropical paradise of 6.5 acres in Ojochal.  Cabin with one sleeping loft, all services, mountain and distant ocean views.  Several building sites available for main house or rental units. Close to surfing, fishing, golfing. Sale for $129.000  Contact:  for more photos/information or go here:

Located in Jacó at Barrio Ricos y Famosos
in Calle Europa, Casa Shangri La.
Main house: 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, 270 square meters, 2 condominiums 2 bedrooms, one bath, 110 square meters, plus one small apartment: One bedroom, one bath. Huge pool, carport for five cars. plus double garage, rancho with pool bathroom, gymnasium, laundry room, pool plumbing room, huge dog house in separate 500-square-meter garden with aviary for guacamayas (we have three birds) 60 meters of river front of Río Copey with a 4-meter-high protective and retention stone wall. Eight surveillance camera CCTV system with Internet access from anywhere. Over 2-meter-high brick wall all around the property with two layers of razor wires on top, the safest place to be! Electronic entrance gate, door phone, five telephone lines, high-speed Internet wireless access everywhere. Beautiful gardens with many fruit trees. Built to highest standard by German owner in 2005,  room for two more apartments, plans approved. Less then a 10 minutes walk to the beach and or center of Jaco. Price $ 1,350.000 negotiable. All fittings and furniture. German-built, excellent quality and well maintained. 70% owner financing available. More photos on request HERE!  Email:  cell 8838-2081 or home 2643-2979.

Rich Coast montage
Real Estate, Central Pacific Region

Central Pacific between Jacó and Quepos-Manuel Antonio
Lots in gated community near the beach  from $17,999! Only 3 left
2-bedroom house in gated community was $120k now $99,900
3-bedroom house with 2 additional residential lots, walk to the beach $160k
Turnkey coffee shop/ bakery, corner location, great ROI! $65k
2-bedroom panoramic oceanview house, guesthouse on 2.5 acres $269k
Panoramic oceanview  property, 3 houses, on-ground pool $375k
And much more!!!
   USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
   CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891

Samara church and lot
Commercial lot with great visibility in heart of Playa Sámara commercial district. Located alongside town's largest church, bank, hardware store/lumber yard, mini shopping plaza, and Pali (Sámara's largest supermarket). This lot has a large elevated building platform shaded with mature treees. All this makes for many commercial options.  One block from stunning "blue flag" beach. This is a perfect location for a eco/boutique hotel, restaurant/catering, apartments, or condominium. All utilities to this property. Lot size 1,414m2. Price 325K. Email:

Gorgeous Survival Farm located between San Ramón and Arenal Volcano bordering the huge Arenal Monteverde Nature Reserve. 30 acres of virgin rain forest with no neighbors, river, spring waters, rich soil, giant trees, homesite, no electricity, year-round 4WD access. 59,000 USD

Gulf road

Beachfront pristine five-hectare (13-acre) property

includes a common open air lodge with kitchen, three cabins, a caretaker's house, a garage and a secure storeroom. The property is maritime and has a current and valid maritime user's permit, all up to date and clear. In addition to the immaculately landscaped portion of the property that is already developed with bungalows, there are an additional three hectares that are ready for expansion and are cleared and planted in grass. The sales offer includes furnishings, appliances, catamaran, kayaks, and a whole series of extras. This property has about 300 meters of beach front in a docile portion of the gulf about 15 minutes north of Puerto Jimeenez, ideal for mooring boats just off the property shoreline. Has municipal water and power. Offered at $970,000. All reasonable offers will be considered. See photos and maps and more at Contact us at: or +1-866-514-7435.

For Sale By Owner
1 lot (1.5 acres)  at SIBU (8 lots total) amongst 50 acres of protected jungle gardens with sunset ocean views of Playa Nosara. Underground electric and water.13 minutes from Playa Guiones. Gated. In house financing available. Home of SIBU Sanctuary.

Spectacular view property on a ridge near Alajuela.  Large home and 3 rental homes totaling 7,300 square feet (678 square meters) live-in construction.  Property area is 3,376 square meters (0.83 acres) including a vacant lot for expansion options.  In total there are 10 bedrooms, each with an ensuite bath.  Property has pool, rancho, mirador, courtyard and covered parking.  Homes have romantic fireplaces, built-ins, storage, other luxury features.  Turnkey sale includes all appliances, furniture, fixtures, equipment.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:

Five bedroom home
Five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths plus guest house
Price reduced $100,000 for quick sale. Features include out door BBQ, swimming pool, plus on the beach. The home is completely furnished with U.S. products. Each room is individually air conditioned.  Hot water in bathrooms, kitchen and laundry room.  Fully furnished. Includes TV’s, refrigerator/freezer, dish washer, microwave, electric stove/oven, washer & dryer and many “as seen on TV” appliances. 
Asking  $250,000.    Call Gary 8784-2945 or email

Becker montage
Beach property on the Pacific Ocean in Guanacaste.

House and guest house on adjacent half acre lots. Each with separate electric,  private septic and well. Each can be sold stand alone or packaged. Modern kitchen, granite counters, Viking stove, large separate frig and freezer. Private commercial grade septic and well. No water shortages even in dry season. High speed internet and U.S. standard electric. Center of the beach -- NEVER floods. Estuary at each end of the beach with excellent kayaking and bird watching through the mangroves. Excellent fishing right off the shore. Great surfing, horseback riding, bicycling or Turtle watching. Groceries three miles away. Mentioned in "The Lonely Planet" Page 301. "Two of the most beautiful and least visited beaches in Costa Rica. Wilderness beaches of fine silver-grey sand." Despite opportunities for great surfing, kayaking and just about anything else you want to do on a sandy strip of paradise, the beaches are nearly always abandoned. $500K Will finance.  More pictures available at:  Contact information:,  US: 001-612-599-0205 or Costa Rica 011-506-2655-1202.


ULatina, UCR, & U Fidelitas San Pedro, San Jose. $185,000.
Quietly located behind The Foundation Costa Rica Canada, 500 meters north of Iglesia Lourdes, San Pedro. ULatina, UCR, U. Fidelitas, bus & new train station are within five minutes Four-bedroom, three and half-bath unit within a secure complex of 40 condos with high cement outside walls with secure entrance manned by an armed guard 24 hours per day. Security fencing with electric wire, and a CCTV recorded security camera system is monitored within the guard house.  For additional peace of mind, this residence equipped with an independently wired security system, iron bars on windows and patio doors, a telephone communication system to contact the guard house and secure parking at your front door.   Beautiful mountain view from roof covered 3rd floor terraza. A green park area inside the complex for your children to safely play and an outside parking area in from of guard house for visitors. Cable TV/Internet lines and 220-volt service for hot water heater, stove and dryer. Water storage tank with pump maintains high pressure to bathrooms on all three floors. American style washer and electric dryer, refrigerator, glass top stove, and kitchen cabinets included. Other furniture items may be available. Call Bill   (English) C.R. Phone: (506) 6011-6987   or  U.S. Phone:  (630) 886-4458  or   (305) 848-5577. C.R. Spanish  phone number: (506) 8799-4041  or  (506) 8363-9898.  Email:

Med house
Mediterranean inspired home overlooking the Bay of Nicoya and Pacific Ocean. This design allows for barrier free living, yet maximizes views from every room in the house . Vaulted ceiling over the living area and kitchen give the great room it’s spacious, open feeling with a natural stone fireplace and imported Spanish tile floors. $365,000.   Property: 22,000 m2 or 5.5 acres. Construction: 4,500 sq. ft. including porches and garage. 3 nedrooms, 2 baths, full dining room, separate office. Custom wrought iron gates, custom exotic wood cabinets, high-end stainless steel appliances, Granite countertops.    Slide show at   
For more information contact:

beach scenes
Established Hotel/Resort -Great Business Opportunity:
The owner/manager of a successful hotel on the Gold Coast of Costa Rica has listed their property with us. It is a successful and ongoing concern. The property and buildings are well built and maintained. The property has a history of repeat clients. To protect the business for the current and future owners, detailed information of the listing will only be shared after an expression of interest and a non-disclosure confidentiality agreement is executed. It is located about one hour of Liberia airport and less than 500 meters to beach. The land is over 1 hectare allowing room for expansion. There are 18 bedrooms in a variety of apartments, cabinas and houses, A/C, bar restaurant and shop. Near golf, horses, tennis, world class surf and more. Listing Price of $US2.4 million. Mary or Jerre West,, 8879-0235 or (303) 317-6603

For sale is a beautiful 50-acre property located in Los Alpes, just 15 minutes outside of San Ramon. At about 4,000 feet above sea level, this finca provides gorgeous views of the Central Valley as well as the Pacific Ocean in the distance while also offering a wonderful climate year around. The main house is two stories with three bedrooms and two full baths. High quality construction using exotic hardwoods such as almond, which covers the ceilings throughout the entire house. There are also two corrals and a small casita on the property. This location is perfect for a farm-style home or for beginning an agricultural business. This truly is a rare piece of property and is available for $399,999. Price is somewhat negotiable and we will be happy to work with the buyer to make it work! Please call 8816-2478 or e-mail for more information ¡y se habla español!

humming bird nest

Bed & Breakfast for sale and personal home with 2 houses on property of 3/4 acre (3,030 m2) and buildings w/verandas & carport approximately 350 m2. One house at entrance is central to village w/gated parking lot and a 3-bedroom house for rental or employees/family w/carport/yard/gardens. A 50-meter sendero winds to the top among lush gardens where the main house is situated w/2 buildings attached by verandas & stairway to second floor.  There are 2 bedrooms, sala, 4 baths, large kitchen, laundry rooms, work bodega, storage bodega and hot tub on veranda w/tiled shower room.  Home is surrounded by tropical gardens, views of Arenal Volcano, panoramic views of Lake Arenal, private w/school owned property on one side, pasture land on back side and connecting entry gate on other side to Cabinas El Castillo & Fusion Restaurant.  A bird watcher's paradise w/hummingbirds, Montezuma, toucans, butterflies and visits from howler monkeys.  The B&B is listed four consecutive editions of Lonely Planet and the first established B&B in this area.  Photos can be viewed on the Web site:  Make your dream come true with a slice of paradise in a quiet, private setting. Call Ellen Neely at  8835-8711.  Email:

Guiones retreat
Approximately half acre on the beach with private path to the surf. Very private three-home complex with pool, spacious patios with two wet bars, barbeque and yoga area. Featuring a three-bedroom ranch style home plus a two story Mexican villa style home with two master suites, large kitchen and living area with ocean views and breezes upstairs and a garden apartment downstairs with separate entrance. A caretaker's or teenager's cottage and lots of space for expansion. PRICED FOR QUICK SALE: $899,000.  Call 506 8867-8883 or

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)
A successful, local, long-running business for sale.
In the nine years of operation, this company has grown to cover the entire Southern Pacific Zone, and opened the door to further penetration in San José, Manuel Antonio and Osa Peninsula areas. And it is the only one of its kind with no comparable competition. With the extensive groundwork that has already been achieved, the business is now poised to expand into a new level of success. Operating since 2005, the owner is retiring to another Latin American country. It is now time to turn the business over to a new owner who could expand it to even greater success. Details on the business, its history, a strategic analysis of its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, as well as a pro-forma income statement from 2008 through to 2013 are available upon request to

Jaco station
Gas Station/Auto Plaza
Located on the Pan American Highway, Jacó Beach, Costa Rica, Central America. This property is  45,000  square feet or  18,000  meters.  Liquor and convenience store is operational. Room to add an automotive service, car wash, restaurant, pharmacy, lotto sales, tour sales, ATM's,  etc, for a real money maker. Also future plans for a 80-unit  auto motel and casino. See on Youtube at: Asking price  $3.9 million. Email or call: 8899-9870.

beach scenes
Established Hotel/Resort -Great Business Opportunity:
The owner/manager of a successful hotel on the Gold Coast of Costa Rica has listed their property with us. It is a successful and ongoing concern. The property and buildings are well built and maintained. The property has a history of repeat clients. To protect the business for the current and future owners, detailed information of the listing will only be shared after an expression of interest and a non-disclosure confidentiality agreement is executed. It is located about one hour of Liberia airport and less than 500 meters to beach. The land is over 1 hectare allowing room for expansion. There are 18 bedrooms in a variety of apartments, cabinas and houses, A/C, bar restaurant and shop. Near golf, horses, tennis, world class surf and more. Listing Price of $US2.4 million. Mary or Jerre West,, 8879-0235 or (303) 317-6603

Live the dream!
Several profitable businesses, including a regional radio station, are for sale in Costa Rica. Certain purchases can provide the new owner with residency as well as a great lifestyle. So live your dream while making a profit. Contact:

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 10
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News from the BBC up to the minute

BBC news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
dead kids
Sebastián Condorí, 16.  and  Valeria Cortés, 15.

Murdered teens lauded
as musicians with futures

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Two teens found in makeshift graves near  Paraíso were musicians and members of a youth orchestra.

The pair were murdered. There were reported missing Monday. Friends found the graves containing bodies Tuesday afternoon.

The dead youngsters are Sebastián Condorí, 16. who played the flute, and  Valeria Cortés, 15, who was a violinist.

The Sistema Nacional de Educación Musical  provided information early Tuesday about their work in the Orquesta Sinfónica Manuel María Gutiérrez. The pair had great futures as musicians, said  Miguel Peña, director of the state musical system. They were described as girlfriend and boyfriend.

Judicial investigators are treating the killings as a sex crime. The boy was stabbed and the girl may have been raped.

Mexican troops taking over
in area vigilantes control

By the A.M. Costa Rica news services

A federal takeover is under way in an area of western Mexico known as Tierra Caliente, or Hot Land, where heavily armed vigilantes have taken up a fight against a local drug cartel.
Mexico's interior minister, Miguel Angel Osorio Chong, said Monday that government troops would take over security in the region with support from authorities in Michoacan state, where the area is located.
The announcement in the state capital, Morelia, followed a string of firefights between the vigilantes and alleged members of the so-called Knights Templar Cartel.
The interior minister called on the vigilante groups to return to their activities as citizens and leave security in the hands of the institutions. But the leader of one vigilante group, Estanislao Beltran, said they will not disarm.
Masked vigilantes took power in more than a dozen rural communities last year in Michoacan state, arguing authorities were failing to stop drug violence.
Opponents and critics claim the vigilante groups are backed by a rival cartel — a charge the vigilantes deny.
Until now, government forces had not interfered with the groups even as they spread into more and more communities.
Sunday, hundreds of vigilantes seized control of the town of Nueva Italia, reportedly disarming police.
The civilian militias say they have now surrounded the Knights Templar Cartel's stronghold of Apatzingan, raising fears of a bloody confrontation.
The unrest is posing a major security challenge for Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto who took office a little more than a year ago, pledging to reduce drug violence. More than 75,000 people have been killed in the nation's drug war since Peña Nieto's predecessor, Felipe Calderón, launched his crackdown on the drug gangs in 2006.
Following the interior minister's announcement, the Mexican attorney general's office said it was sending 11 helicopters and 70 investigators and officers to Michoacan state.

Gaudalupe barber shops
target of raid for drugs

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Anti-drug agents said they detained two persons Tuesday who are suspected of selling drugs out of two barber shops in Guadalupe. The suspects are 33 and 18, said the  Policía de Control de Drogas.

In a search of the shops, agents confiscated marijuana and a small amount of crack cocaine, they said.

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From Page 7:

Dreamliner suffering from more battery problems

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Battery problems have prompted the grounding of another Boeing 787, one year after a similar issue led to a months-long global suspension of the jet's flights.

Japan Airlines reported that a mechanic saw white smoke rising from beneath the cockpit of a parked Dreamliner during routine maintenance at Tokyo's Narita International Airport Tuesday.

An investigation found one of the eight cells of the plane's troubled lithium-ion battery had leaked. It said a safety valve meant to release excess pressure had worked properly and that it did not catch fire.

JAL replaced the plane with another Dreamliner jet, and said it will keep flying its other 787s following routine maintenance checks.

The worldwide fleet of 50 Dreamliners was grounded for more than three months last year after battery problems sparked a fire in a parked plane and forced the emergency landing of another.

Boeing later rolled out modifications to the battery, but admitted it did not know what caused the meltdowns.

The U.S.-based multinational company said the modifications appeared to work as designed in Tuesday's battery incident in Tokyo.