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(506) 2223-1327                             Published Tuesday, March 1, 2016, in Vol. 17, No. 42                             Email us
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Government claims land marketed by U.S. owner
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A strange property dispute is developing in northeast Costa Rica.

Government agencies claim that a U.S. citizen is trying to sell lots on land that belongs to the coastal development organization.

But a person who identified himself as Charles Scott Chinchilla said on the property Web site that he has sales documents going back 33 years.

“Please note that that the Costa Rican government has been circulating information that the sale of this property is illegal because they claim the land belongs to the Costa Rican government because it has been declared a wild national heritage area,” he said.  “If this is the case, then the government of Costa Rica has expropriated my property without due regard or due process of their own laws without notification or compensation of any kind whatsoever.”

The claim of government ownership is by the Junta de Administración Portuaria y de Desarrollo Económico de la Vertiente Atlántica. This is the same entity that runs the ports in the Limón area.

This agency's claim made its way to the presidential Web site Monday. The claim has been repeated by the Dirección Regional del Área de Conservación Tortuguero.

Scott said on his Web site that “. . . the Costa Rican government has mounted a defamation effort not seen anywhere against my character

by portraying me as a fraud and potential thief.”

Some Spanish-language news outlets picked up the government claim apparently without checking further.

Scott identifies himself as Costa Rican-born with more than 35 years working for the U.S. Federal government mostly as an aeronautics engineer with the U.S. Navy.  He notes that his eldest son is a captain in the U.S. Marines and the youngest is an Olympic freestyle wrestler.

The conservation area says it has set up an informational meeting Thursday in the facilities of the Asociación de Promotores Turísticos del Área de Conservación Tortuguero to discuss the land issue.

Tortuguero is best known as a Caribbean nesting spot for turtles which attracts thousands of tourists.

If the government's ownership claim is incorrect, this would not be the first time. Pacific coast landowners have battled for years efforts by the central government to expand the boundaries of national parks without concern for the rights of occupants.

The rights of occupants in the southern Caribbean coast also have been overlooked in many cases because the families who have been there for generations do not have paperwork proving their ownership.

Ironically, Scott points out on his Web site and also his Facebook pages that he spends time reforesting and planting trees in danger of extinction.

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, March 1, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 42
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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.


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New taxes considered unlikely to pass

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

There seems to be agreement among observers of the political scene that the central government's plan for new taxes is dead.

The Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said as much when it announced last week that it is cutting the nations credit worthiness from BB to BB-.

“As the administration of President Luis Guillermo Solís approaches its last full year in office in 2017, we think it is increasingly unlikely that it will be able to pass a substantial fiscal reform,” said Standard & Poor's. “The country's fragmented congress and protracted process for agreeing upon legislation have blocked the passage of comprehensive fiscal reform (including changes to income taxes and a shift to value-added taxes) for many years.”

Central American Data, an online financial news service, said Monday in an editorial that “Costa Rica's external vulnerability is now much higher than it was in years past, as the growing fiscal deficit makes it increasingly difficult to access external financing, without which pressure on domestic interest rates will be inevitable, with a consequent negative effect on the real economy.”

The news source cited several other Costa Rican news articles making the same point.

Meanwhile in the legislature, Rony Monge Salas of the opposition Partido Liberación Nacional said Monday that 45 members of the team assembled by President Solís have left the administration. He was commenting after the resignation of  Mauricio Salom Echeverría, who headed the Consejo Nacional de Vialidad, the road agency.

He blamed the resignations on lack of leadership and a clear statement of objectives and goals.

Some lawmakers appear reluctant to create new sources of revenue for the government until there is a display of reducing expenditures. To address that concern the Ministerio de Hacienda, the finance ministry, unveiled a draft last week of  measure that would require lawmakers to state from where funds are to come before they approve new spending. However, as the ministry pointed out, that requirement already is in the Costa Rica Constitution.

More                                  cigarettes
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
A police officer checks out this load of illicit cigarettes that turned up in a truck that a private firm uses to transport trash from the Hospital de Santo Vito in Ciudad Neily. The brand from Thailand is available in Panama's Colon Free Zone. There were about 33,000 packs. This was the second confiscation in just a few days.

Deadline set for expressing political views

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Readers are invited to express their preferences for party nominations and the elections for U.S. president, national level lawmakers and other officials.

This newspaper will publish these preferences as letters through Friday, Oct. 14. The U.S. general elections are held on Tuesday, Nov. 8.

Each letter should be of reasonable length and free standings in that it should not dispute the comments of a previously published letter. The letter should make and support its own arguments. Letters will be published with the name of the writer and the community in which the writer lives.

Sometime in the third week of October, A.M. Costa Rica will publish its election endorsement and have the last word. There will be no further campaign letters published.

Those supporting a candidate are reminded that U.S. voters in Costa Rica need some lead time to cast their ballots and send them in to be counted.

News from the Spanish-language press
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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, March 1, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 42
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Lawmaker seeks a crusade against violence inflicted on children
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A Costa Rican lawmaker has called for a national campaign to stem the wave of violence against children. The lawmaker,  Lorelly Trejos Salas, said that violence against children creates future violent conduct, increases school dropouts, promotes involvement with organized crime and continues poverty and lack of opportunities.

She said that her fellow lawmakers and the Costa Rican people should join efforts with the various government agencies to eliminate violence against children.

She cited reports of 11 children a day being treated at the
hospital Nacional de Niños for injuries due to violence. She said that in 2014 and 2015 there were more than 6,000 such cases and that the number in 2015 exceeded those in 2014.

The lawmaker of the Partido Liberación Nacional said that criminal penalties were just bandaids on the problem.

The biggest problem could be categorized as negligence, she said. And negligence can be attacked with prevention and education, she added.

The national agencies she mentioned include the Consejo Nacional de la Niñez y la Adolescencia and various local committees that supervise the wellbeing and rights of children.

Security ministry says that another appeal has frozen evictions
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Officials at the Ministerio de Seguridad Pública said Monday that they are waiting for yet another Sala IV constitutional court decision before they proceed with evictions at Finca Chánguena near Palmar Sur.

Although the court declined to hear one appeal last week, the ministry said that there is another pending. The court noted then that the ministry was acting subject to a judicial order.

The Sala IV froze the eviction of some 100 families in
mid-February. The security ministry said that the decision that is awaited covers all the families who are squatting on the land. There have been other evictions, and some of those removed
from the land have been protesting at a bridge over the Río Térraba on the Interamericana Sur.

Flurries of legal actions are a typical strategy in such cases. And lawyers seldom are penalized for repetitive and excessive filings.

The evictions have become a political issue because some in Costa Rica believe the right to land outweighs the rights of a property owner. There are slogans painted on the walls in downtown San José that say in Spanish that the land belongs to those who work it.

Meanwhile the central government is trying to find land and housing for those who have been and will be evicted.

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Smokey gets a hand from Toño Pizote with new smartphone app
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Great White North has its Smokey the Bear to warn about forest fires. In Costa Rica, the job belongs to Toño Pizote.

And Toño is featured in a new smart phone app that is being distributed by the Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía, the  Sistema Nacional de Áreas de Conservación and the Programa Nacional de Manejo del Fuego. The app is available at Play Store and the App Store under the name “Conoce más sobre los incendios forestales.”

March is the driest month in much of Costa Rica, and the drought in the western part of the country also contributes to a tinder dry forest land.

The app access an ebook in Spanish that is designed to raise the consciousness of children to forest fires. The bulk of the fires are caused by humans, said the ministry. 
The app also is the access to two online games with forest fire themes, said the ministry.
              fighting app
Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía graphic
Toño Pizote and the face page of the new app.

The gentle and ubiquitous pizote is an appropriate mascot. The tree dweller tends to create a lot of ruckus when there is a woods fire.

The long-nosed critters have pretty well taken over the Escazú landscape.

Vacation, travel and hospitality

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, March 1, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 42
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Apple lawyers visit Congress
today to talk about iPhone

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Technology giant Apple plans to tell a U.S. congressional panel today that a demand by law enforcement authorities to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino, California, terrorists who killed 14 people would set a dangerous precedent for government intrusion into the lives of people.

In an advance copy of his testimony, Apple general counsel Bruce Sewell says that building the software needed to break into the phone used by Syed Rizwan Farook would debilitate the security of hundreds of millions of other Apple devices used by the company's customers throughout the world.

"Building that software tool would not affect just one iPhone," Sewell says. "It would weaken the security for all of them . . . We can all agree this is not about access to just one iPhone."

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, is demanding that Apple create software that would allow investigators to check the phone to see if Farook, an American-born Muslim, was in contact with others about the early December attack he carried out with his Pakistani-born wife, Tashfeen Malik. Both were killed hours later in a shootout with police.

A court magistrate in California has ordered Apple to comply with the demand, but the outcome is uncertain pending Apple's appeal.

In New York Monday, a different court magistrate ruled that the Justice Department cannot force Apple to comply. A Justice Department spokesman expressed disappointment in that ruling and said the department plans to appeal.

If the California judge's order is upheld, other law enforcement officials say they will ask the company to unlock other Apple devices involved in criminal investigations.

One survey in the U.S. showed that a majority of Americans favor the government's position in the dispute.

Industry sources note that the government probably can get a good idea about the content of  Farook's telephone by contacting the service provider that has records showing who has been called and when. Some have characterized this as an FBI effort to use a terrorism case to compromise encryption systems in general.

Trump and Mrs. Clinton
continue to hold the leads

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A new U.S. political survey shows real estate billionaire Donald Trump taking command in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, with former secretary of State Hillary Clinton grabbing a strong lead in the Democratic contest.

CNN/ORC said 49 percent of Republicans support Trump, more than his four remaining challengers combined. His closest opponent, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, is at 16 percent, followed by Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas at 15 percent.

In the Democratic race, the poll showed Mrs. Clinton, the country's top diplomat from 2009 to 2013, with a widening lead over her lone opponent, Vermont's democratic socialist, Sen. Bernie Sanders, 55 to 38 percent. 

Both Republicans and Democrats are getting set for nominating contests Tuesday in 11 states, the biggest electoral day so far in the months-long campaign.

Trump is favored in 10 of the states on what is called Super Tuesday, all except in the southwestern state of Texas, where Cruz hopes to win on his home turf.

Mrs. Clinton is looking to capture the majority of the contests she faces against Sanders, who has campaigned against the country's growing income inequality and the clout of giant Wall Street financial firms.

The Republican nomination race has quickly evolved into a taunting, name-calling contest, with Rubio and Trump disparaging each other's physical traits.

Trump often refers the Florida lawmaker as Little Marco Rubio, who trowels on makeup to hide his pronounced ears and says he couldn't get elected dogcatcher.

Rubio on Sunday made light of Trump's little hands and a bad spray tan on his face.

In recent days, Rubio has derided Trump as a con artist trying to hijack the Republican party.

Establishment Republican figures, many of whom have endorsed Rubio and vowed not to support Trump, are worried that he would not be able to defeat Mrs. Clinton in November's national election and that Republicans would sustain significant losses in Congress, where they now control both the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Last of Mrs. Clinton's emails
released by State Department

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. State Department has released the final batch of emails from former secretary of State Hillary Clinton's private server, the night before so-called Super Tuesday when voters will choose their Republican and Democratic presidential candidates in at least 11 states and one territory.

The issue has dogged Mrs. Clinton while she has campaigned to become the Democratic nominee.

Monday's release brings the total to more than 52,000 emails, including some 2,000 that were censored for containing information now deemed classified.

The final batch contains about 3,800 pages, including one sensitive email containing an exchange on North Korea's nuclear program that U.S. intelligence agencies had pushed to have designated top secret,' the highest level of classification.

But State Department spokesman John Kirby told reporters Monday that the intelligence community had revised its initial assessment and determined the information was secret, the next lower classification.

The periodic releases have kept Mrs. Clinton's email practices in the headlines, fueling the controversy over her exclusive use of a private email account while serving as the top U.S. diplomat.

Bravery in Afghanistan
leads to Medal of Honor

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

For Medal of Honor recipient Ed Byers, Dec. 8, 2012 was a test of endurance and instinct.

After hours of stealthily slinking through the mountainous terrain of eastern Afghanistan, his Navy SEAL team reached its target: a single-room building where the Taliban was holding an American hostage.

As the team’s point man Nicolas Checque went after a guard, Senior Chief Special Warfare Operator Byers charged through the entrance. It was covered by hanging blankets, heavy ones that would certainly slow the team down.

Byers immediately started ripping them down as the Taliban fired. In the darkness, he made out an enemy in the far corner. He shot him, then straddled and subdued another person crawling across the floor.

“By the time I got to him, he already had a weapon in his hand,” Byers said in an interview. “I didn't know if he was just a scared hostage or if he was the actual enemy.”

He called for the hostage, Dr. Dilip Joseph, a father of four who had been teaching medical techniques in Afghanistan. Joseph answered back, a couple of meters away. Byers shot the enemy underneath him and jumped on top of Joseph, using his own body to shield the hostage from the barrage of bullets slicing through the dark night.

“When I did that, there was another person within arm's reach, another enemy that had a weapon and grenades and stuff that was in the corner,” Byers said. “I was able to pin that person to the wall by grabbing his throat and holding him there, as I'm laying on top of the doctor, until our team was able to come in and take care of that threat.”

The team secured the room and saved the hostage, completing what Byers called a no-fail mission.

But the mission wasn’t without a steep price. Nicolas Checque, the team’s point man, was killed during the attack from a fatal shot in the head.

“He died a hero, and his name will forever be etched in history as being a true American hero,” Byers said.

The Medal of Honor is the nation’s highest military award, given for gallantry above and beyond the call of duty.  At a ceremony at the White House Monday, Byers received the medal.

Byers shuns the spotlight. He has served in 11 overseas deployment and nine combat tours.

Byers, who remains in active duty, says he wears a patch of St. Michael the Archangel and prays to him before every mission. Those prayers, he says, have given him the confidence and the serenity needed to tackle each dangerous task.

Aside from the Medal of Honor, Byers’ personal decorations include the five Bronze Stars with Valor, two Purple Hearts, the Joint Service Commendation Medal with Valor, three Navy Commendation Medals, two Combat Action ribbons and five Good Conduct Medals.

“I followed a dream and I never envisioned that I'd be sitting here,” he said. “I got to serve with some of the greatest people on the face of the planet, and that in and of itself is a truly humbling experience.”

Captured Virginia student
confesses before the media

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

An American college student detained in North Korea has publicly confessed to attempting to steal a political banner from a Pyongyang hotel.

The student, Otto Warmbier, appeared before a group of domestic and foreign journalists Monday in the North Korean capital, accompanied by North Korean guards. The 21-year-old University of Virginia student, who was visiting North Korea with a tour group, was arrested last month before boarding a plane out of the country.  He has been charged with committing a hostile act against the state, with the help of the United States.

Warmbier told reporters he removed a political slogan from a staff-only area of the hotel where the group was staying to give to a member of his church who wanted the banner to display as a trophy.  He said the church member offered him a used car worth $10,000. If he was caught and unable to return, the church member said Warmbier's mother would get $200,000. 

Pyongyang has not said what possible punishment Warmbier may face.

A State Department spokesman later Monday said that as a general practice, North Korea arrests and imprisons people for actions that would not give rise to arrests, let alone imprisonment, in the United States. He added there's little doubt that North Korea uses detention as a tool for propaganda purposes.

China shuts down one critic
as media controls tighten more

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

China has shut down the social media accounts of outspoken real estate tycoon Ren Zhiqiang after he dared to openly criticize Communist party leader Xi Jinping and recent efforts to further tighten already stifling media controls.

But just as authorities moved in to silence Ren, who is also known as The Cannon, others continued to speak out.

China’s cyberspace watchdog said it ordered social media microblog portals such as and to close Ren Zhiqiang’s accounts, accusing him of spreading illegal information.

“Cyberspace is not a lawless field, and no one should use it to spread illegal information,” said Jiang Jun, a spokesman of the Cyberspace Administration of China.

Shortly after Xi Jinping made a visit to top party media organizations recently, ordering them to follow the party line, Ren spoke up online, and argued that it was the public that the media should serve.

A posting from Ren’s now deleted site: “When did the people’s government change into the party’s government? Is their money the party’s? … Don’t use taxpayers’ money for things that don’t provide them with services.”

For some, Ren’s comments went too far. Ren is also a party member who has nearly 40 million followers online. While many spoke out online in his defense Monday there were also those who accused him of being disloyal and of spreading anti-Communist thought.

Many, however, voiced concern about how the already small space for the free exchange of ideas is shrinking even further.

One bold commentary that was attracting much attention and praise on Monday, was an article entitled the “Six Questions the Communist Party Should Face.”

The article was still online late Monday, but how long it will remain online is unclear.

Zi Zhongyun, a retired and well-known government think tank historian, wrote the article, which was posted on the social media microblog of the Unirule Institute of Economics, an independent research group.

She said that not everyone likes the Communist party leadership and the party should realize that that number has been growing in recent years. She even said that there are those who would like to see a different political force leading China.

“That is something that we all, party members and the party leadership especially, should think about,” she wrote.

She said there are questions about the purpose of the party's far-reaching anti-corruption campaign, which began when Xi Jinping stepped into office.

Ms. Zi noted that the key aim should be to serve the public’s interests, not just serve the party’s interests or keep it in power.

She also de-bunked the widespread assumption that the party would remain in power regardless of the mistakes it has made or how many officials are corrupt.

“If the Communist Party’s does a good job in leading, then the public will continue to choose the Communist Party, but one cannot make the unconditional assumption that the public will be faithful until death,” the article said.

Since the party selected Xi Jinping as China’s president three years ago, he has been moving steadily to expand his control over society, the military, and the government bureaucracy.

Paris court seeks testimony
from Guantanamo figure

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

In early 2002, Mourad Benchellali said he found himself locked in a cage at the U.S. military camp at Guantanamo Bay, responding to taunts and blows from his interrogators, as Prisoner 161.

“I live in a world where there are them and us, and I am with the Muslim dogs, the worst of the worst," Benchellali later writes in his book “Journey to Hell,” recounting his experience at the now-closed Camp X-Ray, used as the first detention facility at Guantanamo for suspected militants captured after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

More than a decade later, a Paris appeals court has ordered the then-Guantanamo prison chief to appear as an assisted witness today over allegations of illegal detention and torture involving Benchellali and another ex-detainee, Nizar Sassi.

“We think he should have been charged, but it’s a step at least to have him as assisted witness,” said Benchellali’s lawyer, William Bourdon, of retired U.S. general Geoffrey Miller, who ran Guantanamo between 2002 and 2004.

Miller’s summons as an assisted witness refers to a French legal term that carries more weight than a simple witness but does not imply formal charges.

Both Bourdon and Benchellali doubt the retired general will show up today, much less ever face trial in France, but say the court order is a first victory.

“It’s not just symbolic,” Benchellali said. “We may be able to enlarge the area of responsibility and summon other people. We hope the judges will be able to continue their investigations.”

The scheduled hearing comes a week after U.S. President Barack Obama urged lawmakers to approve a White House plan to close Guantanamo and make good on a promise he made as a candidate in 2008.

For Benchellali, it helps advance a personal mission to clear his name, after spending two-and-a-half years at Guantanamo as an alleged enemy combatant.

Written after his release, the book traces Benchellali’s journey from a gritty suburb of Lyon to Afghanistan, where his brother had promised him and Nizar Sassi a holiday. Instead, the two found themselves in an al-Qaida training camp.

The book describes how the two eventually escaped, crossing into neighboring Pakistan. It was late 2001, and the United States was still reeling from the Sept. 11 attacks. The pair were soon captured and turned over to American forces, who transferred them to Guantanamo.

“I cannot describe in just a few lines the suffering and the torture. But the worst aspect of being at the camp was the despair, the feeling that whatever you say, it will never make a difference,” Benchellali wrote of his experience in a 2006 op-ed article for The New York Times.

In 2004, he was transferred to France, where he spent two more years in prison before his release in 2006. A year later, a French appeals court overturned terrorist conspiracy convictions against Benchellali and four other former Guantanamo inmates.

Both Benchellali and Sassi have been demanding for years that French courts launch legal proceedings against Miller. Last April, the Paris Court of Appeal demanded he appear for questioning.

In the United States, Miller has also been summoned for questioning over prisoner abuse at Guantanamo, as well as the abuse of detainees at Abu Ghraib in Iraq, where he helped to establish the prison’s interrogation system.

The U.S. Defense Department did not immediately comment on the French court summons.

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Real estate for sale (paid category)

Ocean View Property for Sale in Jacó
1.5-acre lot with spectacular ocean views. Ready to build. Mild climate year round with an average temperature a cool 74 degrees. Spectacular panoramic views of the ocean and port of Puntarenas during the day, breathtaking views of Esparza at night. Fully titled and owned under a Costa Rican corporation. $50,000. Short-term owner financing available. For more info: Contact: Frank

Jacó beach unique home. First time offered
This house has never been listed.  It is a 3-bedroom, 1-bath home approx. 100 feet above sea level on the only hill in Jacó one mile to the beach.  Totally remodeled to a Gringo house.Has great fenced yard for dogs and a huge screened porch with  great views all around, including a small ocean view.  New in the last two years includes: new kitchen with granite counter, cedar cabinets, all new windows, tile, water system, updated electric & plumbing, superb new AC units (low electric bill), This is half of a duplex with a platted yard.  Other side is the chief of police.  Secure & private.  $169.900. Call Glenn at 506-6214-0056 or

La Uruca condo
Situated three miles west of the capital, eight miles from the airport. Quiet, secluded area within walking distance to a commercial center including a hotel, six restaurants,  next to two bus line stops. Car ownership is not needed. January-March air temperatures are 72 to 80 degrees F. Apartment 1,200 sq. ft (100 sq. meters), on ground floor, indoor  patio. Large windows without bars, parquet floors. Spacious living room-dining area, two bedrooms, maid's room, two bathrooms, four closets  (including walk-in), fully equipped kitchen (refrigerator, washing machine, small appliances, all necessary utensils, work tools).  Many amenities, (pictures, indoor plants, sewing machine, books, keyboard, dishes, glassware, silverware). Annual cost of maintenance about $1,350 includes water, landscaping service, garbage disposal, 24-7 security and property taxes. Price $120,000. Available for viewing:  Mid-January to beginning of April. Contact:  USA :  585 544-4296. Costa Rica : 506 2231-0410

For sale 5,200 m2 Escazú
Fantastic location for condo, hotel, restaurant.
Large lower lot, incredible views. Flexible zoning.
Easy to get liquor license. Low interest financing.
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Goetl in Palo Seco

Charming small oceanfront hotel for sale in Playa Palo Seco
Ideal oceanfront location with back up to a mangrove estuary. The
charming small hotel has a fully equipped kitchen, bar and restaurant and is exceptionnally well maintained. Located on a very private beach of the central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica 35 minutes north of Quepos-Manuel Antonio and 45 minutes south of  Playa Jacó. The main building is a two-storey house with 12 bedrooms. The lot measures 3,054 M2. Beautiful gardens around the large pool and exceptional flora and fauna. Well mentioned in tourist guides like Lonely Planet and Guide Ulysse. Offered at $999,000. USD
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Blakesmore one

Blakemoret two

Costa Rica tropical paradise beach house for sale

Tropical five-acre forested beachfront property with custom house and guest casita on the Osa Península, south Pacific Coast. Abundant wildlife, exotic plants and fruits, secluded beach.  Located 8 kms. south of Puerto Jiménez on the way to Matapalo and Corcovado National Park. Great Price $750,000. Contact Roger. Phone number  (506) 6142-7228   Email: Watch this video for full details.

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 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed,  Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike: 
Check out slide show HERE!

A beautiful American style suburban home just reduced.

A beautiful American style suburban home, 2,700 sq ft of living space with 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, front and rear living rooms, laundry area, kitchen and small attached library nook, arched windows and doors and connected hallways, exotic wood interior ceilings and trim, tile floors thru-out.  The lot is 835 m2 with mature landscape and orchid nurseries surrounding the house. There is an enclosed workshop and BBQ area in the back yard with lots of storage under roof, plus a nursery for an herb/vegetable garden.  This is a very well-kept property with many upgrades, a private feel but yet only 5 minutes from the center of town.  Pérez Zeledón is the commercial hub of the southern zone and considered to be one of the best places to live in all of Costa Rica, the perfect size town, not too big and not too small.  The beach is 45 minutes to the west and a short drive to the cool mountains is to the east. In between, this large valley has a moderate climate.  Pérez has plenty of modern goods and services, an excellent farmers market, private schools, private doctors and clinics, all you need without having to go to the crazy madness of San José.    Just reduced to $199,000.  Call  Jeff:  8725-8176.  Email:

Grecia casa
Mountain home for sale
in Grecia.
Less than a year old. Owners are motivated.  All information regarding the home as well as many photos can be found at Mountain view home for sale Grecia, Costa Rica.   Contact email:

puriscal photo
Costa Rica home for sale $163,500 / 2bedroom - 1,984 ft2

Central Valley view home: 10 minutes from Santiago de Puriscal and shopping, hospital services, and soon Maxi Pali. Only one hour to San José or Pacific beaches.
- On .55-acre lot with river on one boundary
- Area under roof, 1,984 sq. ft., Area inside walls, 925 sq. ft. Steel, recycled
      Styrofoam, and concrete construction.
- 2 ½ years old with central living room and kitchen, 2 bedrooms and 2 baths,
       ceramic tile throughout.
- Central Valley volcano and SJO airport views from every room.
- Vaulted ceilings give bright open feeling.
- Entrance from concrete road to large graveled parking area
- VERY energy efficient with VERY low property taxes.
- Covered attached carport with entrance to front door or laundry-guest bath
- 2 carport storage bodegas.
- 12 foot x 14 foot storage bodega
- Security lights, And Amcrest day & night video recorder system.
- Producing banana trees, and mango, bread fruit, and guanabana trees

Includes: Refrigerator, gas stove & oven with electric grill element, microwave, electric washer-gas dryer stacked style, gas on demand whole house water heater. Other furnishings are negotiable. ICE electric service and land line phone. Bajo Burgos Water district. Metro-wireless WiFi is available. Tigo Star Satellite T.V. House is in a Costa Rican corporation, will transfer shares. Contract or call 506 2416-9324.  Additional photos are available on Flickr album

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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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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, March 1, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 42
Real Estate
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News from the BBC up to the minute

BBC neews feeds are disabled on archvied pages.

Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Arrest at the border
Judicial Investigating Organization photo
Judicial agent places a 23-year-old man in a vehicle after the murder suspect was detained at the border returning from Nicaragua. He is being held in the murder of a 38-year-old bus driver during a robbery in La Carpio Jan. 2. The murder was taped by a security camera, and television viewers repeatedly saw the clip of a robber putting three bullets into the driver.

Demise of shrimp trawling bill praised

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The central government's plan to reinstate trawling for shrimp has hit a road block in a legislative committee.

The Fundación MarViva, an environmental organization, expressed its pleasure with the decision by the Comisión de Ambiente. The organization noted that the measure was pushed by Vivienne Solís Rivera, the sister of  President Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera and a biologist.

A number of families on the Pacific coast have depended on trawling as a way of catching shrimp. But the Sala IV constitutional court outlawed the practice in 2013. The fishing method damages valuable coral and also snags sea turtles. Since then representatives of the shrimp fishing industry and fishermen and their families have pushed the new law that would have voided the Sala IV decision.

The Centro de Investigación en Ciencias del Mar y Limnología of the Universidad de Costa Rica came out against the proposed law last week, MarViva noted.

With the May 1 reorganization of the legislature, there is a possibility that the bill might find a more friendly committee.

Democratic expats have primary election opportunity

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Democrats Abroad Costa Rica is participating in the political party's global presidential primary starting today in Escazú. The organization will set up a polling place in the Centro de la Cultura de Grecia in that community Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Other opportunities for Democrats to express a preference will be Thursday in San Isidro de El General, Friday in Quepos-Manuel Antonio and Saturday in San José Centro. Locations are HERE!

Expats will be represented by delegates in the party's national convention.

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From Page 7:

Diplomats will promote Costa Rican films

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The foreign ministry has agreed to promote Costa Rican films and audiovisual products in five countries as part of a pilot project.

The countries are Holland, Spain, México, Argentina and Italy.

The agreement by the Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores y Culto was with the  Centro Costarricense de Producción Cinematográfica.

The foreign ministry said that diplomats in foreign countries would seek to have the Costa Rican products entered into the various movie festivals and similar events.

Not only will the project help movie producers here, but it will give examples of Costa Rican culture to the rest of the world, said the ministry in a news release.

The ministry also will seek foreign sources of financing, said the ministry.

Costa Rica produced 10 films last year, said Fernando Rodríguez, director general of the Centro Costarricense de Producción Cinematográfica.