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(506) 2223-1327                    Published Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015, in Vol. 15, No. 10                              Email us
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Expats win relief from Caja denial of spousal ties
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The nation''s public health provider now promises that it will not discriminate against family members of foreign residents.

Expats who hold residency are required to affiliate with the provider, the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social. Some were enraged when they found out the Caja was refusing to provide health insurance to spouses or other close family members under the same policy as the principal enrollee.

The Caja said that the spouse or other family member had to enroll individual and pay an additional fee. That extra fee was not required of Costa Ricans who were being insured under the policy of family member.

The Caja officials blamed the flap among foreigners on a misinterpretation of the regulations and said an effort would be made to find those who had been denied coverage. The Caja also said that training would be provided for workers at clinics who are the people who do most of the enrolling.

The Caja officials who issued the statement were María Eugenia Villalta, medical director, and Gustavo Picado, director of finance. Caja workers posted the new information Wednesday on the agency's Facebook page.

The statement cited a Sala IV constitutional court case without further explanation. The case was decided this year, according to its number,  2015-0000018, and the text was not available. The files of the Poder Judicial appear to be behind due to the holidays. The case is believed to have addressed this issue.

The Caja faced a flurry of threats of constitutional court cases in which expats would claim they were entitled to the same rights as citizens.

Among the entities that were about to file appeals is the Association of Residents of Costa Rica.  Ryan Piercy, the association's general manager, said in mid-December that an appeal was in the works. The association maintains a group policy for expats who are members.

Piercy speculated Wednesday that any expat who had paid for additional insurance probably would not get back money. That's how the government works, he said.

However, those in the association group who were forced to pay extra will be reimbursed from association funds, he said

The amount involved for foreigners is not small change. Great Sunrise Enterprises, S.A.  said in December that expat spouses should expect to pay about half of what the principal insurer does. That firm also provides residency services for expats.

Most expat who are pensionados or rentistas sign up for insurance, and their premium is based on their estimated monthly income. Of course, permanent residents who are employed receive insurance through their workplace.

The Caja officials said that the situation of expats was considered by the board of directors in October.

They said that to receive coverage an individual must have some form of provable relationship with the principal insurer and not have a personal income.

The person to be covered needs to have lived with the insured for at least three years, the Caja said.

In its statement, the Caja reaffirmed the fact that the Costa Rican Constitution says that foreigners have the same duties and rights as Costa Ricans with the exception of limitations established by the Constitution or laws.

Nation gears for summit of 32 visiting heads of state
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Officials are preparing to host 32 heads of state for the third annual summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States.

This is the organization set up in part by Venezuela's Hugo Chávez as a competitor to the Organization of American States. The United States and Canada are not members.

Meetings will be from Jan. 24 to Jan. 29, and the heads of state will be here Jan. 28 and 29. Costa Rica assumed the presidency of the organization in Havana last January. Ecuador takes over the leadership during the session here. Ecuador's foreign minister, Ricardo Patiño, was here Wednesday discussing the transition with Manuel González, the minister of Relaciones Exteriores.

Security officials say they are fielding 750
 officers and 500 vehicles to guard the visitors. The organization is called Celac for short. That is derived from the Spanish name, the Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y Caribeños.

About half the countries involved have English as the local language.

Celso Gamboa Sánchez, the security minister, said the police effort was 30 times greater than any before. And he specifically included the visit by Barack Obama, the president of the United States.

Expats probably should plan on avoiding the metro area, if possible those two days as well as the highway from Juan Santamaría airport.

When the summit took place last year in Havana, as delegates talked about human rights, the Cuban government detained a number of democracy advocates.

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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 10

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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.

Residency experts

Residency in Costa Rica
A full service immigration agency
U.S. and San José offices
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Legal – Financial Adviser

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Avoid Real Estate scams, get independent advice and have due diligence performed before signing or making a deposit.

Phone number: (506) 8853-0000


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Remodelling and Construction

Real estate agents and services
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Harvard study says sea is rising quicker

By the Harvard University news staff

The acceleration of global sea level change from the end of the 20th century through the last two decades has been significantly swifter than scientists thought, according to a new Harvard study.

The study, co-authored by Carling Hay, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, and Eric Morrow, a recent doctoral graduate, shows that calculations of global sea-level rise from 1900 to 1990 had been overestimated by as much as 30 percent. The report, however, confirms estimates of sea-level change since 1990, suggesting that the rate of change is increasing more rapidly than previously understood. The research is described in a paper in Nature.

“What this paper shows is that sea-level acceleration over the past century has been greater than had been estimated by others,” Morrow said. “It’s a larger problem than we initially thought.”

“Scientists now believe that most of the world’s ice sheets and mountain glaciers are melting in response to rising temperatures,” Ms. Hay added. “Melting ice sheets cause global mean sea level to rise. Understanding this contribution is critical in a warming world.”

Previous estimates had placed sea-level rise at between 1.5 and 1.8 millimeters annually in the 20th century. Ms. Hay and Morrow, however, suggest that from 1901 until 1990, the figure was closer to 1.2 millimeters per year. However, everyone agrees that global sea level has risen by about 3 millimeters annually since that time.

“Another concern with this is that many efforts to project sea-level change into the future use estimates of sea level over the time period from 1900 to 1990,” Morrow said. “If we’ve been overestimating the sea-level change during that period, it means that these models are not calibrated appropriately, and that calls into question the accuracy of projections out to the end of the 21st century.”

Ms. Hay and Morrow approached the challenge of estimating sea-level rise from a new perspective.

Typically, Ms. Hay said, estimates of sea-level rise are created by dividing the world’s oceans into subregions, and gathering records from tide gauges, essentially yardsticks used to measure ocean tides, from each area. Using records that contain the most complete data, researchers average them to create sea-level estimates for each region, then average those rates to create a global estimate.

“But these simple averages aren’t representative of a true global mean value,” Ms. Hay said. “Tide gauges are located along coasts, therefore large areas of the ocean aren’t being included in these estimates. And the records that do exist commonly have large gaps.

“We know the sea level is changing for a variety of reasons,” she added. “There are ongoing effects due to the last ice age, heating and expansion of the ocean due to global warming, changes in ocean circulation, and present-day melting of land ice, all of which result in unique patterns of sea-level change. These processes combine to produce the observed global mean sea-level rise.”

The new estimates developed by Ms. Hay and Morrow grew out of a separate project aimed at modeling the physics that underpin sea-level “fingerprints.”

To the researchers’ surprise, Ms. Hay said, it quickly became clear that previous estimates of sea-level rise over most of the 20th century were too high.

“We expected that we would estimate the individual contributions, and that their sum would get us back to the 1.5 to 1.8 mm per year that other people had predicted,” Ms. Hay said. “But the math doesn’t work out that way. Unfortunately, our new lower rate of sea-level rise prior to 1990 means that the sea-level acceleration that resulted in higher rates over the last 20 years is really much larger than anyone thought.”

Amazon and Walmart get most U.S. bucks

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Americans shop more on Amazon or at Walmart than anywhere else, according to Mint, the budgeting application that helps its 16 million-plus users track their personal spending.

Although more transactions were recorded on Amazon in 2014, hundreds of millions more dollars, $4.2 billion compared to $3.7 billion, were spent at the discount department store than at the online marketplace that sells just about everything.

There are 4,364 Walmart stores in the United States, according to the company’s Web site.

When it comes to fast food, McDonald’s still reigns supreme, despite recent earnings reports that showed a 3.3 percent sales decline in the third quarter (April 2014-June 2014). Americans who use Mint forked out more than $514 million for Big Macs, french fries and other fare offered by the fast food giant. McDonald’s has approximately 14,000 restaurants in the United States.

Other fast food restaurants where Americans spent the most in 2014 include Starbucks, Subway, Dunkin Donuts, and Chick-Fil-A.

The most frequent transactions for Americans in 2014, as in 2013, were for groceries, fast food and restaurants, according to Mint. Student loan payments continue to be a huge focus for Americans. Student loans were in the top 40 spending categories in 2013 and 2014.

People in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, had the lowest car and health care expenses and the second-lowest home payments last year.

New Yorkers paid the most when it comes to home, gas and car expenses.

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A.M. Costa Rica

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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 10
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Government allocates $28.5 million to mitigate impact of drought
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The government is allocating 15.5 trillion colons or about $28.5 million to mitigate the impact of the continuing drought in the north Pacific and elsewhere.

The money will be taken from a number of public institutions, said the national emergency commission, which is coordinating the effort.

A plan devised by the agency and other institutions seeks to provide humanitarian and social assistance, protect the health of humans and animals, the vegetation and water sources and accumulate supplies of water.

The weather phenomenon El Niño is reducing the rainfall in much of the country, and farmers and ranchers are suffering. The emergency commission, the Comisión Nacional de Prevención de Riesgos y Atención de Emergencias, has declared an alert for 19 cantons that range from Atenas to La Cruz in the far north Pacific.

The Instituto Costarricense de Acueductos y Alcantarillados has created the Agua para Guanacaste plan to provide water to the stricken areas. This includes drilling more wells.

This will be the second year in a row that the areas were

A.M. Costa Rica file photo
Guanacaste is normally dry this time of year.

short of rainfall. Many cattlemen already have moved their herds elsewhere or to the slaughterhouse. Some have low expectations of government aid.

Acueductos y Alcantarillados already has issued a general warning that drinking water may be short all over the country.

The drought also has an impact on the nation's hydropower system, and the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad will be burning more bunker petroleum in its thermal plants.

Finance ministry issues a reminder on luxury home tax deadline
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Ministerio de Hacienda noted Wednesday that only owners of new or recently purchased luxury homes have to declare value this year. The rest just have to pay the luxury home tax.

Homeowners of qualifying dwellings only need to declare the value every three years, so this is an off year for most.

The ministry also noted that today is the deadline for making the tax payment. Many financial institutions will accept the money. That includes Banco de Costa Rica and Banco 
Nacional. In some cases, payment can be made via Web pages.
This year homes subject to the tax are those worth 128 million colons or more. That's about $235,000. The value includes the structure and the immediate real estate. Condos are subject to the tax, too, if they meet the value threshold. Owners have to include a proportional share of the commons area.

The tax is overlooked by many.  The ministry said that it has been working with municipalities to identify homes eligible for the tax. So far 850 tax avoiders have been identified, it said.

The tax is supposed to provide homes for those living in slum conditions. However, there has not been any announcement yet of homes that have been built with the tax income.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

Del Rey nightlife

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 10
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Huge market potential seen for crops modified to improve health
By the Ghent University news staff

Genetically modified crops with an increased vitamin and/or mineral content have large potential to improve public health, but their availability for consumers is still hampered as a result of the negative public opinion. Research from Ghent University, recently published in Nature Biotechnology, has demonstrated that these crops have a promising market potential.

Over the last years, various modified crops with health benefits have been developed in which genes, mostly originating from other organisms, have been added. Notable examples include rice enriched with pro-vitamin A (also known as golden rice) and folate-enriched rice, developed at Ghent University.

Fifteen years after the development of golden rice, which was the first genetically modified organism with health benefits, the developers of such transgenic biofortified crops have little reason to celebrate. To date, none of these crops are approved
for cultivation, unlike those with agronomic traits. Despite this, six major staple crops have been successfully biofortified with one or more vitamins or minerals. Clearly, these crops with health benefits have great potential. In a recent study, from Ghent University, not only the impact of
 modified crops on human health, but also their market potential was convincingly demonstrated.

Research at Ghent reveals that consumers are willing to pay more for modified crops with health benefits, with premiums ranging from 20 to 70 percent. This differs from modified crops with farmer benefits, which are only accepted by consumers when they are offered at a discount.

Especially in regions, such as China and Brazil, which are considered as key target markets for these nutritionally improved crops, where a large part of the population suffers from nutrient deficiencies, the potential market share is high.

Several studies show that these modified crops have positive impacts on human health. As expected, the enhancement of multiple micronutrients in the same crop by genetic modification, yields the best results. This method generates aggregated health benefits at a relatively low cost.

Although modified crops with health benefits are not a panacea for eliminating malnutrition, they offer a complementary and cost-effective alternative when other strategies are less successful or feasible, researchers  concluded.

Vacation, travel and hospitality

Howard book
Want to live in Costa Rica?
Read this book!

1,000s have benefited from 17 editions
with its insider information
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Written by Christopher Howard,
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La Fortuna
Comfort of your home in the campo, 5 minutes from Fortuna Centro of San Carlos, in the shadow of Volcano Arenal, Flat screen TV, AC, refrigerator, free coffee. Local area activities like four-wheeling, horse riding, zip lining, hot springs, jungle walking tours. Bring your camera for great photos of nature, fishing and swimming, canyoning and wireless internet. Harry Hart, proprietor.  Call for reservations  (506) 2479-8670   and (506) 8682-9219  Email:

Will Costa Rica Retirement Work For You?
Find out for yourself on Live In Costa Rica Tours

When you visit Costa Rica, you'll want to discover what you need to know to  make the right choice about moving to this tropical paradise.  Our familiarization tours have won hard-earned credentials that prove general excellence and the right focus.  These are the only retirement tours that are licensed and approved by the Costa Rican government and tourism institute  (ICT). In 2006 we were featured on the NBC Today Show and World News.  In 2010, we won the  prestigious Latin America-Asia Travel Excellence Award for the Best and Most Unique Tour in Latin America.

   * Discover how to make the right choices about moving here
   * Find out how to live affordably
   * See how other expats live. Meet other expats who have made
          the move.
   * Access the country's affordable health care system
   * Informative two-day seminar given by local experts in their
          relevant fields.
   * Tours led by Christopher Howard, 34-year resident, citizen,
          and the author of "The New Golden Door to Retirement
          and  Living in Costa Rica – the Official Guide to Relocation”
Click HERE  to learn all about our Association of Residents (ARCR)  approved tours at

Anywhere Costa Rica plans custom vacations, and has the most comprehensive travel services in the country including travel guides, resorts and vacation homesCosta Rica tours
and car rentals.  
Call 1-888.456.3212 or 2479-8811 locally.

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.
Every Saturday - Vendor Fair!

Click photo for another video

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.

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.
George Lundquist, retirement, relocation columnist, Guide & Developer/Builder.


Here's reasonable medical care
Costa Rica's world class medical specialists are at your command. Get the top care for much less than U.S. prices. It is really a great way to spend a vacation. See our list of recommended professionals HERE!amcr-prom

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Real estate rentals
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See our listing of real estate brokers on the for-sale page.

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Maneul Antonio
The vacation homes at Manuel Antonio Estates offers luxury, comfort and peace of mind. We have numerous homes to chose from, all within walking distance of the town’s shops and restaurants and just a few minutes to the best beaches and the famous national park. While the homes are secluded and hidden among the rainforest, the surrounding area offers adventures like zip lines, white water rafting, mangrove kayaking and many more. All of the homes are available for short-term rentals, have easily accessible parking, cable TV, and Internet and are fully furnished. We are happy to assist with all your need for the perfect Costa Rican vacation.
Manuel Antonio Estates        TOLL FREE: 1800 346 9724
011 (506) 2777.3339

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.

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.

HP Cattle rentals
Mountain homes or farm for rent
Barva volcano, Heredia province
We offer for rent a gorgeous two-bedroom mountain chalet and a one-bedroom mountain home located on the slopes of the Barva Volcano, Heredia Province. The homes are situated at 7,300 feet altitude and within a working horse ranch just three kilometers from the Braulio Carrillo National Park entrance. From our homes one can hike to the Barva volcano crater-lake.  Enjoy a spacious living room, kitchen, fireplace and breathtaking views of the Irazú volcano and the Central Valley. Observe dozens of cloud forest bird species to include the resplendent quetzal.  The homes are incomparable in beauty and attention to detail within the Barva highland area.  We are only 35-55 minutes from Costa Rica’s three principal cities (Heredia, Alajuela, and San José), less than two hours from the central Pacific beaches, and three hours from the Caribbean beaches. Enjoy the tranquility of the mountains while maintaining quick access to the conveniences of the city and rapid access to other eco-tourist destinations in Costa Rica. Additionally, we can board your horses at a reasonable fee.  We can also offer our clients rental of a small and fully functional farm complete with stables, pasture, and office space.
Mountain chalet: $750.  Basic mountain home: $400.
Boutique mountain home: One-bedroom $850. Two-bedroom $1,000.
Small Farm that includes a chalet, basic mountain home, stables, and 8,000m2 of pasture/green areas: $1,500.

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A.M. Costa Rica's   Fifth news page
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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 10
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Page 1 is HERE!    Page 2 is HERE!     Page 3 is  HERE!
Page 4 is HERE!   Page 6 is HERE!    Page 7 is HERE!  Sports page is  HERE!

Opinion is HERE!   Classifieds are HERE!  Plus useful links

U.S. expats in City of Light
fear terror will change it

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

On the crowded commuter train that American-born Renee Pontbriand takes to her office near the Eiffel Tower, an unnatural silence set in late last week as a terrorist spree unfolded. "It was spooky," she recalled.

The tower, the Champs-Élysées, Notre Dame, the iconic landscape of Paris, remains unchanged. But last week’s two terrorist attacks in and near the city have at least subtly altered the psychological terrain, not only for the French but also for Americans living among them.

Affection for the City of Light has not dimmed among nearly a dozen American Francophiles, educators, students, writers, political activist and faith leaders, interviewed for this story.

"France is so wonderful and so beautiful and so rich," said Ms. Pontbriand, a Rhode Island native who has lived in metro Paris for more than half of her 45 years. "People take time to talk to you about things. . . . You sit around the table for hours talking with very good food and wine."

She, her French husband and their two children live in the southwestern satellite city of Etampes. In a solidarity demonstration there last week, participants sang “La Marseillaise,” Ms. Pontbriand said. But when they reached the point in the national anthem "where it says raise your arms, raise your weapons, someone said, 'no, no, you have to be unified.'"

Ms. Pontbriand directs Boston University’s study abroad program in Paris. Fourteen of the semester’s 51 students were in the area when the attacks occurred. The rest of this semester’s class arrived Sunday.

"No students dropped out. No parents called," she said.

"This generation . .  it’s kind of sad," Ms. Pontbriand continued. "They’re almost used to" security alerts and terrorist attacks such as the Boston Marathon bombings in April 2013.

Gilda DiCarli, who was in the university's exchange program and now is a graduate student at the Paris Institute of Political Science, was home in Boston on winter break when the attacks occurred.

But she felt an immediate connection, she said. Her senior thesis on French satire had included a study of Charlie Hebdo.

Ms. DiCarli will return soon to Paris, her home almost steadily since 2012, with increased concern for her own safety and that of a city and country she respects. She said she worries about cultural repercussions if government authorities are pressured to impose stricter surveillance and other counterterrorism measures.

The child of Argentine emigrants to the United States, Ms. DiCarli has been researching education issues in immigrant communities in Paris..

"Some of the schools are just neglected. The education is supposed to be equality, fraternity and liberty," she said, referencing France’s national motto, "but there really isn’t that equality."

Another American student, Lila Hassan, is less worried about personal security than the prospect of more misunderstanding.

After last Wednesday’s massacre at the offices of the satirical weekly publication, "my initial reaction was shock," she said. "My second thought was why Charlie Hebdo? I was hoping it wouldn’t be Arabs or Islamists."

Ms. Hassan, 20, is a native New Yorker and a Muslim of Arab descent who has participated since August in a Queens College, City University of New York, student exchange program. She studies political science and journalism at Universite Paris Ouest and works on press freedom issues with the nonprofit Reporters Without Borders.

Though her parents offered to fly her home, Ms. Hassan insisted she felt safe. She’d already lived with her family in Cairo and was in Tahir Square in January 2011 as crowds demanded Hosni Mubarek’s removal as Egypt’s president.

"I know Paris isn’t following those same trends. It’s not at risk of revolution that way," she said.

At Sunday’s massive solidarity march at the Place de la Republique, Ms. Hassan engaged with other marchers and was encouraged to discover "a lot of them really understand the differences between a practicing Muslim and radicalism. Being here and trying to clarify that in my own way is really important."

Dual-citizen Eileen Horowitz Bastianelli took part in Sunday’s demonstration at the Place de la Republique and in a spontaneous gathering there just a few hours after the Charlie Hebdo attack.

"In the realm of something so tragic, it was extraordinary to see how people have banded together,” said Ms. Bastianelli, a native New Yorker who grew up in California and moved to Paris in 1988. "… All of us keep saying, let it last."

The digital media consultant ran social media for Democrats Abroad in 2012 and was disappointed that no top-level U.S. official took part in the Sunday solidarity march.

She called it "a very, very bad representation of my country and my president, who I really believe in."

Ms. Bastianelli said she’s concerned about the growing societal fractures in religious extremism and in the "sharp rise of the far right."

Friday’s attack at the kosher supermarket has stirred discussion of the role of anti-Semitism in the terror spree.

American David Lebovitz, who describes himself as part Jewish, said friends now ask whether he has encountered anti-Semitism in Paris. "I’ve never had anything happen to me," he said.

A food blogger and author of "My Paris Kitchen," he moved to France from California in 2003. He writes from his apartment, about a five-minute walk from the Charlie Hebdo offices.

Though he dislikes crowds, Lebovitz felt compelled to join in Sunday’s big march. "I wanted to be there, because it was a very emotional thing," he said.

The recent terrorism, "caused by extremists who have certain beliefs," hasn’t changed his routine, Lebovitz said.

"But I wonder if it’s going to change in the aftermath," he said. "Is the city going to change? Is the country going to change? Are people’s attitudes going to change?"

Patricia and Walter Wells, journalists who divide their time between Paris and Provence, were having lunch in the south of France when they got a news alert about a mass shooting at a Paris publication.

"First thing, we looked at one another and said, ‘What if it’s the Tribune?’ " said Mrs. Wells, a restaurant critic, author and blogger whose husband was the longtime editor of the International Herald Tribune. They had moved to France from New York in 1980.

They live in the capital and Vaison-la-Romaine, a Provencal village of 6,000 where this week at the market people had signs pinned to their back, "Je Suis Charlie," Mrs. Wells said. She added that the husband had joined in a village unity march Sunday that drew “about 2,000 people. ... I’m really pleased at the solidarity.”

Yet, she said there’s "a tremendous amount of tension" over a growing Muslim presence. She added that, particularly in the schools, “it feels like a powder keg."

The couple runs a cooking school that draws travelers from the United States and elsewhere. Mrs. Wells said she doubted their clients would be deterred by the terrorist attacks, though "I think people do feel like this is France’s 9/11."

France is second only to the United Kingdom as a European destination for Americans, according to the U.S. Commerce Department. Tourism accounts for 7 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, Fortune magazine said in a report on terrorism’s potential impact on the industry.

Tourists and ex-pats are among the worshipers at the American Cathedral in Paris, which primarily serves English speakers from the United States, the United Kingdom and Africa.

"We had the embassy calling to say we’re a soft target," said Lucinda Laird, cathedral dean and rector since March 2013. "So we closed our gates on Wednesday. We’re buzzing people in and out – more to assuage people’s fears."

Even though police killed three Islamic extremists in Friday's twin raids, the country remains at its highest level of security alert.

Over the weekend, Rev. Laird led a service naming, and offering prayers for, the three perpetrators as well as their 17 victims. "We’re trying not to respond to hate with hate," said the cleric, raised in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Sunday’s sermon fell to an interim associate priest who’d arrived on New Year’s Eve for a six-month term. Mary Haddad preached about finding a glint of light in a dark time. She spoke from experience: She weathered a 1994 earthquake in Los Angeles and, almost 14 years ago, was at a talk at New York’s Trinity Church when planes hit the neighboring World Trade Center.

"I have the disaster gene," Rev. Haddad joked.

Humor aside, she said surviving Sept. 11 "made me calmer. Living through it, you realize there’s September 12. It gives you a perspective. … We have the present moment, which is the only moment that God ever gives us.

"Paris is the same – yesterday, today, tomorrow – this beautiful, magnetic City of Light."

Harvard's sex assault policy
coming in for criticism

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A move by Harvard Law School to modify its rules for investigating sexual assaults on campus has renewed a debate over efforts to protect student victims versus providing fair hearings for the accused.

The issue of sexual assault on U.S. college campuses has become a major subject of debate over the past few months. Recently, Harvard Law School reached an agreement with the U.S. Department of Education to adopt a lower burden of proof to investigate cases of sexual harassment and violence.

The new rules are supported by some, while others say the new policy lacks basic elements of fairness.

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights announced in December that it had found Harvard Law School in violation of Title IX, a federal law that bars gender discrimination at educational institutions that receive federal funding.

The Department of Education launched the investigation mainly because Harvard law students had complained about this issue before. Catherine Lhamon, assistant secretary for the civil rights office, says the school's procedures did not satisfy the legal requirement for prompt and efficient investigations.

"The ultimate findings we reached were that the law school had been using an inappropriate standard for review when investigating allegations of sexual harassment and sexual violence. They also had not ensured training for personnel who would be involved in investigating complaints," said Ms. Lhamon.

Harvard Law School had been using what the federal government says is an outdated clear and convincing standard threshold, which requires a 75 percent chance that an attack took place.

On the same day the results were released, Harvard agreed to adopt a lower burden of proof, called  a preponderance of the evidence, which requires a little more than 50 percent chance that a student was attacked.

Martha Minow, dean of Harvard Law School, said the agreement recognizes the law school has already taken steps to redress identified shortcomings and foster a learning environment in which everyone is free from sexual misconduct.

Some are applauding the new rules. Wendy Murphy, an attorney and adjunct professor at the New England School of Law, says the change at Harvard is important because the university is seen as a leader.

"If Harvard is held to account and changes its policies in a way that expresses women’s full equality and a commitment to respect for their safety on campus, that reverberates very quickly and effectively, because other schools recognize Harvard as a leader not only in terms of substantive knowledge but also as an institution," said Murphy.

But not everyone is supportive of the changes. A letter from 28 Harvard law professors criticized the new procedures for lacking the basic elements of fairness and due process protections for students accused of sexual assault and sexual harassment. 

Harvard law professor Elizabeth Bartholet says many are worried about "the vagueness of the language and the failure to protect consensual conduct that we think puts students at undue risk."

Recent news stories have increased public interest about the issue of sexual assault on college campuses, which is likely to be debated for some time.

Obama promotes broadband
as way to boost economy

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Ahead of his annual State of the Union address Tuesday, President Barack Obama is promoting ideas on how to boost the U.S. economy and improve the standard of living for more Americans. This week, his speeches have focused on the importance of digital technology for consumers and businesses and on ways to protect confidential information in cyberspace.

Speaking to an audience in Cedar Falls, Iowa, Wednesday, Obama said the U.S. economy is growing stronger, and he wants more Americans to feel that resurgence in their daily lives.

"And in the 21st century, in this age of innovation and technology so much of the prosperity that we are striving for, so many of the jobs that we want to create depend on our digital economy, depend on our ability to connect and to shop, and to do business and discover, and learn online in cyberspace," said Obama.

In order to succeed, the president said Americans in many communities needed faster and cheaper access to broadband.

"It's about giving the entrepreneur, the small businessperson on Main Street, a chance to compete with folks out in Silicon Valley or across the globe. It's about helping a student access the online courses and employment opportunities that can help her pursue her dreams," he said.

Monday, the president unveiled plans to strengthen laws against identity theft by requiring businesses to inform consumers within 30 days if their information has been hacked. The plan also would criminalize companies selling consumers' data overseas.

"This is a matter of public safety and of public health. And most of this infrastructure is owned and operated by the private sector. So neither government nor the private sector can defend the nation alone. It's going to have to be a shared mission, government and industry working hand-in-hand as partners,” said Obama.

Privacy advocates have criticized the idea of data-sharing between companies and the government, following the discovery of U.S. government surveillance and bulk-data collection. But some analysts note that many companies share customers' personal data without their knowledge or consent.

Obama expressed confidence Tuesday after meeting with a group of lawmakers that a compromise will be reached as it is in everyone's interest to protect U.S. economy from cyberattacks.

Quashing author's subpoena
draws praise from colleagues

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

The Inter American Press Association welcomed a decision by the U. S. Justice Department to drop the subpoena to journalist James Risen of The New York Times demanding he reveal his sources of information and declared that this ruling “provides a path for a deeper review of the need for a federal law being enacted to protect sources of information.”

The Justice Department Tuesday withdrew the subpoena to Risen, requiring him to disclose the identity of his confidential sources in a trial concerning the leaking of classified information. In June 2013 the U.S. Supreme Court had rejected an appeal by Risen, who cited his professional commitment to protect his sources, something for which he could face imprisonment.

Press association President Gustavo Mohme, editor of the Lima, Peru, newspaper La República, expressed pleasure at the Justice Department’s decision and said that “we who practice journalism have the obligation to keep our sources confidential, those who play a key role in the information that we put at the disposal of the people, this being a moral and legal principle enshrined in several constitutions.”

Risen was called on in 2013 to give a statement in the criminal trial of former CIA agent Jeffrey Sterling, accused of unauthorized leaking of state secrets in violation of the espionage law. The information was reported in a book by Risen in 2006, “State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration,” in which there was revealed an undercover operation that involved an attempt to provide defective plans concerning nuclear weapons to Iranian officials.

Several press association resolutions and reports in the last few years have indicated the need to enact a shield law for the protection of news sources. It is held that a law of this nature would encourage investigative journalism, watchdog action over those in power and prevent news sources from themselves censoring their denunciations and thus reducing the transparency that a democracy demands.

Five more inmates leave
Guantanamo holding facility

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services         

The United States has transferred five men from the military-run detention center in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as the Obama administration steps up its goal of closing the controversial facility.

The Pentagon announced the transfers Wednesday. All five men are from Yemen, and have spent at least a dozen years at Guantanamo, despite being cleared for release in 2009 by a special task force created by President Barack Obama.  Four have been sent to the Middle Eastern nation of Oman, while the fifth has been accepted in the Baltic nation of Estonia. 

The detention center on Guantanamo Bay has housed suspected terrorists captured overseas by U.S. military forces after the 2001 terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington. But human rights activists have criticized the United States for holding the detainees indefinitely without bringing charges against them.

Obama vowed to close the prison when he took office in 2009, but his efforts were halted due to restrictions passed by Congress. The administration renewed its efforts to close the prison after some of the restrictions were lifted in 2013, transferring nearly 30 prisoners last year.

Wednesday's transfers leave 122 detainees at Guantanamo.

A group of Republican senators introduced a bill earlier this week that would place a moratorium on detainee transfers. 
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Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)


CoopeAgri Real Estate

The best option in real estate services in southern Costa Rica and the South Pacific coast. We are professionals promoting properties such as farms, lots, ranches, commercial premises, homes and apartments, through our advertising and marketing services.
Are you buying a property? Our experienced team is ready to help you to find the right place. Are you selling? We are experts selling properties.  Keep it simple. Don't waste your time. We are  the best local and international listing.  Contact us, and we will be glad to assist you!
Local CR Phones: (506) 2785-0282 or  (506) 2785-0278

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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 4030-5480 or 8339-2112.

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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 calls: (Cristian Arce) Phone: 
(506) 2494-0016 
(506) 8309-0173
English calls :  (Luis David) Phone: 
(506) 6154-1940

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
Grecia 884
Beautiful large house in Grecia, Costa Rica, with the best fresh natural weather. The property includes 9 challets and 12.000 m2 of land,  1,000 m2 of construction. Price $498,000. Click HERE!
Grecia 881
Beautiful house in Grecia, Costa Rica,  2 kilometers from the city.   340 m2 of land.
Price $135,000. Click
Grecia 898
Beautiful house in Grecia downtown. Full security cameras. Land 250 m2.  Price $400,000.  Click HERE!
  Send us your request to our email:

Real estate for sale (paid category)

Jaco hotel

Beautiful beach hotel for sale.
Located at Jacó Beach, Costa Rica, Pacific Ocean.
Apartotel Costa Arenas is located just 5 minutes from the beach and 10 minutes from Jacó Downtown. The perfect place to rest in a cozy and familiar environment; surrounded by beautiful gardens. We have 11 fully equipped apartments. Also has swimming pool for adults and children and private parking 24 hours.  Retail value US$700,000.00   Contact:   Carlos Díaz  Local CR Phone: (506) 2643-2085   Email:   Web:

Photo one
photo two
Tambor three for jan. 15
Total area of the property is 23 hectares at $425,000. There's an option to buy 2 sub lots, the first one is land with no construction of 890 sqm at $19,900. The second, 1,700 sqm including a small house, for the price of $65,000
Located 300 meters from the south Jacó . First house is 110 sqm with 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom,  private pool, A/C, kitchen and separate laundry. Second is a 120m, two-story house with 2 bedrooms, There's a small lot has its own entrance and is perfect for building  $280,000.
This 115 sqm condo is located four blocks from the heart of Santa Ana. It is a corner unit with a view of the green area from your living room. Two bedrooms, a master bedroom with an ensuite bathroom. Kitchen is clean and modern. Home is in good condition, and ready to move into. $132.000.
Contact Jo-Anne  Cell phone number: 506 8310-2915
or through 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:

Heredia montage

Cariaria  Los Arcos.
    Lot inside Los Arcos Residence. Absolutely gorgeous right in front of the coffee plantation. The lot is 326.50 meters. Includes the corporation for an easy transfer and the plans for a 170 meter house. Open to all offers.   Architect  plans included (the blueprints). Cost to the seller $4,000 this is included!!   Original Price $97,000 just reduced to $86,000

Also I am selling an Audi A6  2008, 2.0 twin turbo. Full loaded power. Back leather. Full service records at the agency in Costa Rica.  52 kms.  Silver with black. Full computer iPod interface power. Electric moon roof. Everything's a beauty!!  Incredible history and full service at the agency, Costa Rica Audi.

It's a package deal $104.000.  Must sell.  I am moving back to U.S.  Contact me  at my phone:  2260-6979 or cell phone:  8893-8672.

La Fortuna Distress Sale
Divorce forced wife to return to the U.S. with bills to pay. Just wants to get out from under. Modern 2-bedroom home on over 1100m2 intended for apartments or condos. Easy walk to center of town, great volcano view. $140,000 with 50 percent financing arranged. On vacation rental program now producing nice income, but Costa Rica no longer in her future. For details contact

Ringle resort
on one big lot in Esterillos Oeste, (Central Pacific)
Located on a breezy hill just 4 minutes walk to the beach, surf and tide-pools, only 20 minutes drive north to Jacó nightlife and shopping or south to the rural town of Parrita.

First, a 2-storey, 2-bedroom (sleeps 4), 1½-bathroom house with big kitchen and living room.  Full-width verandah with eating and sitting areas, overlooking lawn, pool and gazebo. Sitting balcony at upper, bedroom level.  Carport. and laundry. 

Second, a completely private single-storey. 2-bedroom (sleeps 4), 1-bathroom home with big back yard at a lower level on the same, big fully titled 1,100M2 lot.. Full security bars at all doors and windows, plus locking vehicle access and pedestrian gates at the street. In a very safe neighborhood, with private and natural surroundings

Well maintained, fully and tastefully furnished and equipped, hot water, local phone, cable TV/DVD and high speed wireless internet   The houses have been rented for both long-term and vacation for $100/$80 per day and $1,500/$1,200 per month respectively. See this place, you will love it! Then make an offer. E-mail or call (506) 8386-8825.  Rodney, asking $350,000.

Condo montage
Cariari luxury condo for sale
 PRICE REDUCED FROM $235,000 to $195,000
This is not an ordinary condo. Completed one year ago, a $45,000 renovating made it an exquisite dwelling. As soon as you walk in you know it is a special home. No detail has been overlooked, even minuscule ones. The owner has a need to move on, and someone lucky will be the beneficiary of the fine detailed work. The home itself has three bedrooms, two and half bathrooms plus a maid’s quarters with its own bathroom. Also, it has a living room, dining room and a gorgeous kitchen with a kitchenette. There’s also a small outdoor patio. Being the end unit of this four-home condo complex, there’s parking space for three vehicles.  Approximately 240 sq. meters. All this near the Cariari Golf and Country Club and its renowned Tom Facio golf course. The club also has amenities such as a fitness centre, exercise room, Olympic swimming pool, sauna, 12 tennis courts and many other benefits. Tel:  8384-9608 or 2293-9054  Price $195,000.

Atenas home
This developer's prime lot with super house is being offered in Roca Verde, 7,006 M2 of gentle grade, all landscaped for tropical effect, 3 bedrooms 2 baths with tile floors and hardwood kitchen, near the entrance of the neighborhood. Great floor plan on this one! There is a double carport, and a large patio and pool, wheelhouse style living room and many other features. View, large usable lot, close to town, nice, oh yeah. $495,000.

More photos HERE!
Another 'live in the view' home in Puriscal
$179,900 includes:
Lot on river, concrete road, custom kitchen & bath with granite counter tops, PEX plumbing, 2” Styrofoam, sandwiched in steel roof, 4” concrete/recycled Styrofoam & steel walls, laminated, bronzed windows, custom wood doors, appliances and all transfer taxes, and fees.

2, 900 sq feet under roof, 1,250 sq feet inside walls, 2 bedroom, 2 ½ baths, laundry room, three separate patio areas, covered carport, shade trees, in upscale, secure project.  This project has river with protected areas & walkways. It is only 10 minutes on all paved roads to Santiago de Puriscal, 45 minutes to La Plaza Mall/Hospital CIMA and SJO airport, and 1 ½ hours to Pacific Beaches. It has recently upgraded public water supply and dependable ICE electric and high-speed internet.
Please come visit our projects and meet four new homeowners who have recently moved into their new “live in the view” homes to verify how happy they are and that they all came in under budget. CONTACT: George Lundquist  Home phone: 2417-1041 Cell phone: 8888 4543 Skype glundquist.
To see more Photos of this house, click HERE!

Maneul Antonio
Manuel Antonio Estates focuses on building vacation homes for clients within Manuel Antonio Estates and Palmas Pacifica. We take care of the details from permits and design to supervision of construction and management of the rentals, if needed. We provide privacy and security, and our gated community offers shared common recreational facilities, beautiful landscaping and parking areas. Our homes and lots are located just minutes from the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. If you've ever considered buying a second home, just minutes from the beach, do not hesitate, if you have any questions or would like to request more information please take full advantage of our Costa Rica real estate services and contact us today!
Manuel Antonio Estates    1 800 346-9724  (506) 8815-9606.

Ciudad Colon
Great Deal!! Apartment in condo with pool and extensive green areas:
Ciudad Colón, San José $112,000
The apartment has a master bedroom with a large ensuite bathroom with bath tub, and a smaller second bedroom/office with air conditioning. It has a second full bathroom, living/dining room, laundry room with hot water tank and storage area. The kitchen comes with granite countertops, a breakfast bar and new dishwasher. It has 82 m2 of construction. 2 balconies with beautiful views of the river and mountains. Private parking for one car. Elevator and a well presented reception area. Located in a very quiet and private neighborhood just 400 meters from the centre of Ciudad Colón. Within minutes to all major amenities in Santa Ana and Escazú. Easy access to the beach (less than 1.5 hrs).  24-hour security, visitor parking, pool, extensive and lush green areas, BBQ area, children’s playground and its own water treatment plant. Contact (506) 6022-9294 or 6022-9967, for further info or to arrange a viewing.

Suenos montage
Outrageous blowout prices on oceanfront condos in Los Sueños!

Located in the private Bay Residence enclave overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Los Sueños Resort and Marina, there are three gorgeous units available at unbelievable bargain pricing from $589,000.  All of these beautiful units are three bedrooms and two baths, 2,200 square feet, fully furnished and ready to move in.  Development includes a gym, access to 3 pools, jacuzzis, BBQ areas and the Beach Club.  If you’ve always wanted to own in Los Sueños, now is the time!  Contact  or call 8702-0778.  From U.S. call 209-482-1788.

Top floor unit: $649,000   Second floor unit: $675,000  Garden unit: $589,000

Newly available in Roca Verde
Well-built home of 215 m2, 3 bedrooms, two bath on 1,150 m2 of lot, with attractive rock retaining wall, carport, and a pool. Indoors there are high, vaulted hardwood ceiling, bright rooms, a laundry room.  The floor is ceramic tile in pastel shades. $247,000. Photos: 2446-5587.

San Ramon
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya.7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 ft. elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 baths, appliances included. High-speed internet installed, Direct TV via sling box on Internet. $199,000 Contact   Check out slide show HERE!


Beach Front Home - Central Pacific Coast
Pristine condition, recently renovated. The best surfing and boogie boarding in the country. The most magnificent ocean and sunset view. New 20-year, fully registered concession on one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. Easy access from San José (1 hour 25 minutes) located between Jacó and Manuel Antonio, in Esterillos Oeste.  2 or 3 bedrooms. Center room can be living room. House with 2 1/2 baths. Separated rancho with kitchen and large entertainment patio. Landscaped garden with no water shortage. Has both municipal and well water with automatic watering system. Direct access to the beach as no road is in front of property. Protected land on one side of the property for additional privacy.  Alarm system and complete shutters for security while away. Lot approximately 1,725 square meters, Asking price: $385.000.  Contact to Paul at local phone 506- 2637-8858  Cell phone 506- 8823-8550 .  US Mobile 908-400-9772  Emails:  and


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:

ARenal property
Location: Near Arenal        Price: $2.7 million
Size: 113 acres
Web site:

The farm is at the highest point on a stunning ridge bordered by pristine Costa Rican primary forest on all sides of the property, with active wildlife all throughout the area. On each of its gently rolling terraced lomas you get a glimpse of Volcán Arenal from a distance. This property has four different lagunas, a working organic farm and nursery, mature fruit trees, sheep corral, ideal for grazing horses with stunning views from all the hillsides. The Northern Zone of Costa Rica is the country's best kept secret, providing a perfect home base location to travel the country's many destinations while still maintaining the best climate at 400 meters above sea level.

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Jaco hotel

Beautiful beach hotel for sale.
Located at Jacó Beach, Costa Rica, Pacific Ocean.
Apartotel Costa Arenas is located just 5 minutes from the beach and 10 minutes from Jacó Downtown. The perfect place to rest in a cozy and familiar environment; surrounded by beautiful gardens. We have 11 fully equipped apartments. Also has swimming pool for adults and children and private parking 24 hours.  Retail value US$700,000.00   Contact:   Carlos Díaz  Local CR Phone: (506) 2643-2085   Email:   Web:

call center
Call center for rent ready to go !
13 work stations, good equipment, good location, Rohrmoser, two blocks from Plaza Mayor. $4.000 per month. Call Kevin 8366-6861.

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:

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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 10
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News from the BBC up to the minute

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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
drug boat
Security Ministry photo      
Coast Guardsmen inspect the confiscated cocaine.

At sea and on land, drug arrests made

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas crew members working on a tip from a U.S. aircraft detained five persons and confiscated 810 kilos of cocaine off Quepos Tuesday.

On land, the Policía de Control de Drogas conducted 10 raids Wednesday to nab nine drug suspects in San José, Heredia and Limón. The security ministry said that the arrests involved members of two separate groups.

The Heredia-Limón organization was involved in the distribution of Jamaican marijuana, investigators said.

Two launches and security ministry aircraft closed in on the Ecuadorian-registered 30-foot Cherna about 1 p.m. Tuesday. Two Costa Ricans and three Colombians were aboard.

The first land-based drug distributors worked the Cañada Sur and San Sebastián areas of San José. The second organization imported marijuana to Limón and then transferred it to Heredia for retail sales, the security ministry said.

Animal adoptions in Tres Ríos Sunday

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Residents of the Tres Ríos area can find their new animal friend Sunday at the local park.

That is where the Asociación Animales de Asís is holding its next adoption fair. The time is from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Both puppies and dogs and kittens and cats are available, said the organization. The animals have been castrated and vaccinated, the association said. A donation of 10,000 colons is sought for each pet adopted.

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From Page 7:

Program seeks to bring women into technology

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A project that is designed to bring more young women in technology will be initiated today with a ceremony involving President Luis Guillermo Solís.

This is the MenTe en Acción program created by the non-profit Amigos of Costa Rica, an arm of the U.S.A Foundation.

"Around the world, the technology field has a gender diversity problem," said Amigos on the project Web site. "A combination of social forces discourage women from entering this field. MenTe en Acción is a 12-week program to empower 50 young women into becoming engineers, developers, and get excited about technology. The program also engages professional women already in the workforce and current students pursuing these majors to create a network that serves as a social support system."

Operators of the program will create 10 teams of teen women to create computer applications over 12 Saturdays, and members of the winning team will get full university scholarships, Amigos said. 

The organization is seeking donations for the program. The word MenTe is a play on the Spanish word for mind. The word also is short for mujeres en tecnología, "Women in technology."