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A.M. Costa Rica
Your daily English-language news source Monday through Friday
Hotel and Casino    Amigo Realty
Eco Realty
(506) 2223-1327                     Published Monday, April 1, 2013, in Vol. 13, No. 63                Email us
Real Estate
About us
Jo Stuart

                Rica real estate

Jesus in the tropics
A.M. Costa Rica/Kayla Pearson

Faithful commemorate
of Christ

The risen Jesus Christ is commemorated in the clear morning of San José Sunday, Easter, in a procession at the Catedral Metropolitana, the culmination of a week's efforts by the faithful to mark His death and resurrection.

All over the country there were celebrations marking the most important event in Christianity.

And one did not have to be a Christian to enjoy the pageantry that evoked  images of the Middle Ages.

Our photo report is HERE!

Good morning! It's time to pay yet another tax!
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The country returns to normal today after a Semana Santa holiday, and normal means that there is a tax deadline.

This is the deadline for the so-called timbre de educación y cultura that is levied each year on every corporation or similar entity, including subsidiaries of foreign firms registered in Costa Rica.

The deadline usually is March 31 every year, but today is the next working day after the deadline, which fell on Sunday.

The Dirección General de Tributación, the tax collecting agency, has made little mention of the due date. That last notice published to the agency's Web page was in April, and that appears to be incorrect in some aspects.

The agency said that the small annual tax could be made with a Form D-110  at the local bank branch. But most banks are declining to accept tax agency paperwork now that the EDDIE computer system is up and running. That means expats without the tax  system installed on a computer will have to rely on  accountants or bookkeepers to make the filing. Once
 the tax form is filed electronically, someone still needs to pay the tax at a bank.

Lawmakers passed the tax with a fixed amount in 1976. Since then the amount has been a victim of inflation. Firms with net capital 250,000 colons or less, that is about $500 or less, pay just 750 colons, probably less than the taxi fare to the bank. The largest firms with net capital of more than 2 million colons (about $4,000) are charged 9,000 colons.

The tax applies to any corporation owned by an expat whether the individual is here or outside the country. Plenty of expats have placed vehicles and homes in corporations for asset protection and are unaware of the tax. In fact, there are some expats who never have paid the tax on their corporation. 

They will find that penalties are far greater than the tax itself, and they need to have their tax professional visit a Tributación office to straighten out the obligation.

The educational and cultural tax was not replaced by the new corporation tax of about 190,000 colons that it levied each January on active entities. Owners of inactive corporations pay half that, but all still pay the full rate for the education and cultural tax.

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San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 1, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 63
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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.


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Real estate agents and services

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Grecia Real Estate
Here in Costa Rica, Central America , the most beautiful houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
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Great climate and safe communities.
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Contact Christian Arce in English:
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Contact Luis G. Jiménez in Spanish:
Cell phone (506) 8707-4016
Send us your request to our email:

CR Beach

CR Beach Investment Real Estate
reminds you that Costa Rica’s #1 beachtown,“the new Jacó,” invites you to see the recent changes:  clean paved roads; more bilingual police; more trendy & tipico restaurants; new a/c movie 4plex & new theatrical-conference center; new central park with activities; more bargain priced properties for sale, and lower priced rentals…
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Residency experts

Residency in Costa Rica
A full service immigration agency
U.S. and San José offices
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we know how to do it. Experienced with many nationalities. Up-to-date on
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Tel: (323) 255-6116




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Insurance Agent Accredited
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Project completion specialists

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

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Our primary goal is to assist our clients with a smooth transition to occupancy while providing highly personalized and distinctive services. We have refined the process to be a hassle free experience, especially valuable for clients who live abroad. We customize to suit each client’s personal taste, lifestyle and budget.
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Legal services
RE&B Attorneys S.A
Attorneys & Notaries
Tels: 2201-8012/2637-7640
USA phone number: (305) 748-4340
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Our law firm offers services
in many areas such as:
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Customs and International 
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Attorney At Law – CPA

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We've been helping people like you since 1986.
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Translations and legal services

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Simultaneous translator 
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U.S. Tax International

Plus Costa Rican taxes, accounting, and legal services
Over 15 years in Costa Rica
(English Spoken)
C.R. 2288-2201   U.S 786-206-9473
FAX: 2231-3300

U.S. Income Tax
David G. Housman Attorney & C.P.A
in Costa Rica 32 years.
Specializing in all matters of concern to U.S. taxpayers residing abroad, including all new passport and other
I.R.S.  filling requirements foreign income tax exclusion (to $95,100 per year) for all back years. Taxpayers filling past-due tax returns before I.R.S. notice do not face criminal sanctions
• Associate of James Brohl
Phone: (506) 2239-2005 Fax 2239-2437

E mail:

James Brohl, C.P.A. & M.B.A.
US Income Tax,  US GAAP Accounting
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Uncle Sam's
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Telephone 8305-3149 or 2256-8620

Photo by Jerome Ives
 Casket containing Andrés Cruz Castro is carried from the
 Atenas church.  It seemed as if the whole town came to pay
 their respects, said resident Jerome Ives.

Our reader's opinion
Carelessness is the cause
for field and forest fires

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

I find it necessary to write in respect to the death of Andrés Cruz Castro, and I beg the public to be aware of what can happen when we become careless. What I mean by careless is setting a fire to clean a field, or carelessly dropping a cigarette on a roadway or near dry material.

After fighting fires for the U.S. Forest Service, and the California Department of Forestry, I find it totally absurd that the Costa Rican government does not fine people who are burning in this dry weather. If the person(s) are ever found who started the fire, they could be charged with killing this young father. But I doubt that will ever happen. Thanks for your time.
Jerome Ives

Photo by Jerome Ives
 Photographer Ives said he hoped the photos could be
 published, to honor the brave young father and husband.

Emergency declared on fires
in region around Buenos Aires

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The national emergency commission has declared an alert for the forested area around Buenos Aries de Puntarenas where two large fires have consumed up to 210 hectares, some 518 acres.

The Comisión Nacional de Prevención de Riesgos y Atención de Emergencias took the action Saturday.

The blazes were in the area known as Olan and also Sabanas de Oca.  The commission said that the topographic and the type of vegetation made fighting the blazes difficult.

Involved in the effort were the Cuerpo de Bomberos, the Cruz Roja Costarricense, the Fuerza Pública, the Municipalidad de Buenos Aires, the Instituto Costarricense de Acueductos y Alcantarillados and private firms.

The emergency agency noted that this is a critical period for forest fires because of the prolonged dry season and because in many areas there was below average rain in the last year. The agency said that the period of danger would extend until the first two months of May.

There also are many small blazes around the country that could become major ones.  Despite overcast skies some days, Semana Santa has seen about zero precipitation in most of the country.

However, some rain is expected for today mainly on the Caribbean coast with possible afternoon showers in the central mountains, said the Instituto Meteorológico Nacional.

The wind is expected to be mostly moderate but with some gusts. The weather institute reported gusts Sunday of up to 43 kph or about 27 mph.  The gusts are another problem for fire fighters.

Wind gusts already have been a factor in the death of one fire fighter. Fire officials said they believe that Andrés Cruz Castro, a music teacher with three children and a volunteer fireman, was trapped when a strong wind caused a covering of vegetation to burst into flame and generate thick smoke. That was at a blaze last week at Cerro Tárcoles en Turrubares.

Buenos Aries is in the southwestern part of the country inland from the Pacific coast.

Find out what the papers
said today in Spanish

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Here is the section where you can scan short summaries from the Spanish-language press. If you want to know more, just click on a link and you will see and longer summary and have the opportunity to read the entire news story on the page of the Spanish-language newspaper but translated into English.

Translations may be a bit rough, but software is improving every day.

When you see the Summary in English of news stories not covered today by A.M. Costa Rica, you will have a chance to comment.

This is a new service of A.M. Costa Rica called Costa Rica Report. Editor is Daniel Woodall, and you can contact him
From the Costa Rican press
News items posted Monday through Friday by 8 a.m.
Click a story for the summary

Costa Rican news summaries are disabled
on archived pages.

Have you seen these stories?
From A.M. Costa Rica

Top story news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

                Rey Hotel

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A.M. Costa Rica

Third News Page
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every weekday
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San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 1, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 63
Real Estate
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Photo by Ken Beedle
Worshipers dressed as Roman soldiers in Cartago guard a recreation of the Hill of Calvary where Christ died.

Pageantry of procession and drums sent shivers through some
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The weather cooperated fully as Semana Santa pageantry took place under clear and sometimes cloudy skies.

Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday were filled with processions originating from just about every church in the country. Some were at night lighted by torches.

Others, like the resurrection procession Sunday were in the full light of day.

The Good Friday procession that brought a statue of Jesus to a recreated hill of execution in Cartago included dozens of Roman soldiers.
One resident confessed that "in the past we had taken the time to spend as most Ticos, on the beach.  I was impressed with the proceedings.  The drummers sent shrivers through me."

He was particularly impressed by drums.  "What was really impactful was the thundering of drums and the slow march of the participants to their cadence," he said. 

"It reminded me of the procession in the funeral march of JFK.  It was so solemn.  The thousands lining the street went quiet so the only thing heard were the drums and occasional bugles.  It took one hour to cover the kilometer from the Cathedral Santiago Apostol."

The events were a dream come true for photographers.

Photo by Ken Beedle
In Cartago a statue of Christ carrying the cross is preceded by Romans. One carries a sign that says Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.
Photo by Daniel Woodall
In San José, a live actor takes the part of one of the thieves who were crucified with Christ. He carries a sign that calls him a latro, Latin and modern Italian for crook.

Semana Santa holiday death toll set at 32 by the Cruz Roja
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Traffic was heavy Sunday night as vacationers headed back to the Central Valley from the Caribbean and Pacific beaches.

The Cruz Roja reported late Sunday that there had been 32 deaths since the holiday began March 23.

The Cuerpo de Bomberos said its crews responded to 25 incidents related to the quema de Judas tradition. That is four fewer than a year ago.

Six of the incidents resulted in disturbances that were handled by the Fuerza Pública, said fire fighters.  Only trash was
burned by the youngsters celebrating the Easter season.

That is in contrast to 2008 when a quema de Judas fire destroyed a furniture store in San Rafael de Heredia. Vehicles have been burned in other years.

Even though Judas Iscariot is getting a favorable makeover by theologians, the tradition continues to set fires and sometimes burns effigies of the apostle who was blamed for singling out Jesus for His arrest.

The Cruz Roja said that the agency made 20 water rescues and transported 70 patients from the scene of violent vehicle accidents. There were 12 deaths attributed to firearms or knives.

Del Rey Hotel

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 1, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 63
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U.N. vote sought on new arms treaty by Costa Rica and eight other nations
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Rica hopes to see a U.N. General Assembly vote on an international treaty to control firearms this Tuesday.

That was the outcome after three countries, Syria, North Korea and Iran, blocked unanimous approval of the treaty in a 12-nation conference Friday.

Costa Rica has been promoting the treaty for years.

"Over two weeks of hard negotiations we reached a text that was meaningful, that was implementable, a text that did not touch in any way upon the Constitutional rights of American citizens, a text that the United States could
support," said Thomas Countryman. "We look forward to this text being adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in the very near future."  He is assistant secretary of state for international security and nonproliferation. He spoke to reporters in a conference call after the meeting broke up Friday.

Some U.S. citizens have voiced suspicions about a U.N.-brokered arms treaty.

Under the treaty, nations are obliged to take more effective action against black market arms brokers and cooperate against the diversion of weapons, said Countryman. He said he did not think the treaty would hurt U.S. arms sales because his country already has tight controls. He declined to speculate why the three countries have not supported the treaty. Discussion on the treaty began March 18.

Vacation, travel and hospitality
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.
Geroge's view
An evening View
from George’s Puriscal home
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.

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Our Vision at Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat is to create the perfect blend of Adventure, Discovery and Tranquility for each guest.  Plan an Adventure zooming along a zip line high in the canopy or horseback riding though forests, farms and rivers. Discover the magical wonders of the flora and fauna of Costa Rica. Experience Tranquility in one of our cabins tucked in our 26 acres. Located in Monterrey, San Carlos, in the mountains above Fortuna, we enjoy spectacular, panoramic views of the Arenal Volcano and its lava flow. Please see our Web site for more information. or e-mail us at

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Christ Howard with Max
retiring in Costa Rica,  and who has personally helped over 10,000 people with ALL BUDGETS relocate SUCCESSFULLY over the last 35 years. CUSTOM TAILOR-MADE TOURS are also available for people with special needs or who can’t take one of our fixed-date tours. ALL tours include EXTENSIVE touring and a highly informative SEMINAR by the country’s most renowned EXPERTS in their respective fields. Also visit: Live in Costa Rica to check out our NEW tour prices and specials.  Customer satisfaction 100% guaranteed! MY REFERENCES.

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Howard Spanish cover


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Ready For a Vacation to Costa Rica?
Customized vacation packages to Costa Rica planned by our team of in-country travel experts. Call us Toll Free: 1-800-606-1860 or locally in San Jose: 2296-7715. You can sit back and relax while we plan your dream Costa Rica Vacation.

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Customized, all inclusive Costa Rica vacations planned by our team of in-country travel experts. Call us Toll Free: 1-800-606-1860 or locally in San Jose: 2296-7715. Sit back and relax while we plan your trip or dream Costa Rica Honeymoon.

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Custom, all-inclusive vacations to Panama by 100% locally based experts in Panama.  See "the new Costa Rica" before the secret gets out!  We offer customized trips to the best all inclusive Panama hotels and Panama resorts. Call 1-866-393-4192 if from the U.S. or 00 (507)-264-1279 from Costa Rica.

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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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A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Real estate wanted

Real estate rental services (paid category)

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

Real estate for rent (paid category)
Perez  Zeledon:   Large studio home overlooking river with deck.  Elegant, ceramic floors, nice cabinets, walk-in closet.  Beautiful gardens and grounds.  Secure. Private. Only  10 minutes
River view home
to San Isidro de El General. Mountain town with everything!  Then, 40 minutes to Playa Dominical, 40 minutes to Chirripó National Park, and also near many other attractions, yet very private and secluded.  Listen to river sounds and sleep like a baby.   
Rare birds in abundance. Includes,  One  double bed and refrigerator, stove, juicer, sofa, tables,  dishes, pans, etc.  Plus, electric, (hot) water   Phone, TV connected, Internet cable connected, garbage and gardener. All included for $425. /month.  Looking for one good person, reliable, long-term.    Non-smoker.

Manuel Antonio long term apartment for rent
This modern two-bedroom apartment with a breathtaking view of the Quepos town and the Pacific Ocean is situated near Manuel Antonio National Park and beaches. The location offers a unique experience in the edge of the jungle, where you can observe wildlife. The apartment has two separate bedrooms and sleeps three guests maximum. The bathroom has a walk-in shower and a toilette. The living room is furnished with very comfortable furniture. The kitchen is fully equipped. Public transports like taxis, bus station, port as well as shops, groceries, restaurants, cafes, bars, and nightlife are within a very short distance. Fully furnished, all bills included (water, electricity, cable tv, wireless internet), $575 per month, 6-month minimum. Contact us now!!! 8853-8245. or see our
Web page:  

COMPLETELY and nicely furnished apartments
apartment view
in San José, and one condo in Escazú. Fast Internet, cable TV, hot water. Large American appliances including washer and dryer. Both convenient locations. No pets. $600 per month. Contact: or call 8555-9819.

Anywhere Costa Rica educates visitors about the numerous 

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We believe the best way to enjoy
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and people is to have a personalized trip plan.

Call 1-888-456-3212 or local 2479-8811 to get started.

Mountain cabin for rent
Sacramento, Barva de Heredia
We offer for rent three furnished, 2-bedroom mountain homes located on the slopes of Barva Volcano, Sacramento, Heredia. The cabin-style homes are adjacent to the Braulio Carillo National Park and walking distance to the Barva Volcano crater lake. Enjoy a spacious living room, kitchen, fireplace and garage. Take in breathtaking views of the Irazú Volcano and the Central Valley. Observe dozens of bird species, to include the occasional Resplendent Quetzal, and a pristine cloud forest. We can also offer you an occasional ride on one of our beautiful mares. Contact Allan or Cristina at, or or for more information HERE! $850 USD/month. We can also offer a weekend or short-stay package.

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 
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Looking 4 Costa Rica Villas?
Rent our all-inclusive, 7 bedroom rental home in Guanacaste.  Just 20 minutes from the Liberia airport, this deluxe ocean view mansion sleeps 6-22 guests.  Ideal for company events & Costa Rica weddings. With 3 meals served daily and a full-time staff to pamper guests, it's more than a Costa Rica vacation rental ...It's your own Private Resort!  Call toll free: 1-800-606-1860.

Lovely cottage on private coffee farm
One spacious bedroom, one bath, office room/spare room with high speed DSL internet, fully equipped kitchen, phone line,
Sarchi cottage
balcony with beautiful view, especially at night with the far off lights of San José. Farm is gated and guarded, private and peaceful, owner on-site. Sarchi is a quiet small town about 30-40 min from the airport, a perfect base to explore from and also get a
feel for normal, day-to-day Tico life. Rental is $575 per month, 3 months minimum. All utilities included. Shorter stays at $45 per night, 2 nights minimum. $225 per week, and $30 per additional night. Sorry, no pets.  Contact or 8308-7732.

                                    rental properties
Homes for rent
in Palmares, Alajuela

Visit our Web page for more information.

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

Beautiful Golfito house for rent
in Costa Rica: $300/month

Available now and please see the video!
New construction includes some wooden stairs to the main gate and a small pavilion above the house overlooking the village. The distance to Golfito harbor/downtown is 7 kms and you can get there by car, taxi or bus. The rent is $300/month, which is very reasonable for those who want to live near sea and Panamá in an inexpensive lifestyle. It was so nice to live near Panamá where people can shop for much lower prices including for groceries. Please contact me at for more details. Thank you.

Palacio condo
Beautiful 2-bedroom, 2-bath modern condo for rent.
(Only 6 years old).
Great Secure Area, Next to 5-Star Hotel Palacio (La Uruca). Gated community, 24-hour security, 5 minutes to San José. Swimming Pool, washer/dryer, covered parking, high-speed Internet, cable TV, home phone! $900 per month, fully furnished, 6-Month minimum! Please Call: 001-954-782-0200 or email

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.


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A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
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San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 1, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 63
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Business and labor in accord
on new immigration proposal

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. officials say big business and labor have reached an agreement on a low-skilled guest-worker program, creating a pathway to citizenship for 11 million illegal immigrants.

Under the agreement, a new "W visa" program would go into effect April 1, 2015.  After a year, W visa holders would be able to seek permanent status and they would be able to change jobs.

In the first year of the program, 20,000 visas would be issued, eventually expanding to a maximum of 200,000 visas that could be granted each year.

The number of visas would fluctuate depending on unemployment rates, job openings, employer demands and data collected by a new federal agency that will monitor the market, the Bureau of Immigration and Labor Market Research.

White House officials said Saturday President Barack Obama is encouraged by the progress of the talks in the Senate as Congress works to come up with a comprehensive bipartisan immigration bill.  Immigration reform is a priority in the president's second and final term in office, which ends in January of 2017.
The labor and business agreement was reached late Friday in a conference telephone call with the president of the AFL-CIO labor organization, Richard Trumka; the head of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Tom Donohue; and New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer, who acted as the mediator. 

The labor organization and Chamber of Commerce have long held major disagreements over guest-worker programs.  The dispute covered how high wages should be allowed for workers, and in which industries.  The agreement settles the issue in various industries, including hotel, restaurant, janitorial, retail and construction, among others.

Schumer is one of eight Senators, four Democrats and four Republicans, who must still sign off on the deal.  They all are expected to sign the pact, clearing the way for the new immigration bill to be presented to the Senate in the next few weeks.

The House of Representatives is working on a similar bill.

Illegal immigrant says
he'll come back anyway

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has released thousands of undocumented immigrants. The agency said it could no longer afford to hold the individuals in detention. The issue of immigration reform now intersects with deficit reduction, two hot topics on lawmakers' agendas, and provides hope to thousands of immigrants facing deportation in the coming months.

On a late December night in 2012, U.S. law enforcement agents entered the suburban Chicago home of César Henriquez, an illegal immigrant living in the U.S., to arrest him.

His crime was failing to report for deportation.

"There was a lot of pain on my family, and my kids.  I have two children. They are almost teenagers.  There was a lot of sadness in my house," he said.

Henriquez, spent almost 60 days in detention while waiting to be deported, until one early morning in late January.

"They woke us up at 2 in the morning, and told us to pack up all of our stuff because we were leaving the facility," he recalled.

He was not sent back to El Salvador, his home country, but to suburban Chicago, where he would wait out deportation in his own home.

"At first I didn’t know why they released us, but somebody told us because Immigration doesn’t have any more money, so they can’t keep us in custody," he said.

Henriquez is one of thousands of illegal immigrants released in recent months.  At a news conference in February, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said that sequestration would bring problems to her agency.

"Under sequestration, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement will be forced to reduce detention and removal and would not be able to retain the 34,000 detention beds as required by Congress," she said.

Joshua Hoyt, an executive for the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, says he was surprised by the decision.

"If we are spending more than $18 billion a year on incarcerating immigrants, hunting them down, stopping them at the border,  we’re wasting a lot of money," he said.

Hoyt says long-term savings on immigration enforcement could come with bipartisan legislation on immigration reform lawmakers currently seek.

"The entire country is now talking about immigration reform, and many of these people would be able to stay, and their families need not be destroyed uselessly," he said.

Henriquez wants lawmakers to reach a deal before December, when he expects to be deported.

"My message for the president is to stop deporting people and let everybody who has no criminal problems, let them go free," he said.

If he is forced to leave, Henriquez says he will spend the money needed to hire a coyote, or smuggler, to get him back inside the U.S. so he can be reunited with this family.

Camera took a tour of Pacific
after woman lost it in surf

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A camera lost for nearly six years has been found on a Taiwanese beach after a 6,200-mile journey.

Lindsay Scallan, the camera’s owner, lost the camera during a choppy, nighttime scuba dive off the island of Maui in 2007.

"The seas were really rough. There was a lot of sand stirred up. It was hard to see," she told Hawaii News Now, adding that she’d gone to the beach the next morning hoping to see the camera washed up on the shore. "But of course, we didn't find it, so at that point I just gave up. I was pretty disappointed because I had all my vacation pictures on there. Plus, the cost of the camera," Ms. Scallan said.

The waterproof camera floated around the Pacific for years before being discovered by a China Airlines employee last month. The camera had seen better days, but the digital storage card was intact, and the photos were able to be retrieved.

China Airlines began a campaign to find the owner and reached out to Hawaii News Now, a local media outlet, for help spreading the word. It didn’t take long before one of Ms. Scallan’s friends sent her a link about the search for her.

"I just was floored that it was my camera and it was all my old pictures and it was amazing. I just couldn't believe it had floated so far, so long ago and the memory card was still intact," said Ms. Scallan.

China Airlines said it will fly Ms. Scallan to Taiwan to be reunited with the camera, but since she recently started a new job, she’s not sure she can take time off.

Computer-like human cell
has many applications

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Researchers at Stanford University in California have taken the next step in genetically engineering a computer in a living cell’s DNA. Making cells smarter could have a wide range of medical and industrial applications.

Today’s electronic computers are built around vast numbers of transistors, etched into silicon wafers.

A transistor is basically a switch used to control the electrical current flowing through a wire. It can amplify the signal strength or turn it on or off.

Drew Endy and his Stanford colleagues have created what they call the transcriptor. Instead of electrical current, the device controls the flow of an enzyme, called R-N-A polymerase, along the DNA in a cell.

“If you imagine a DNA molecule like a wire, with this enzyme flowing along, what we’re going to do is we’re going to come in with a third signal, just like a transistor, and switch the DNA, such that the flow of the enzyme can either pass through the transcriptor or it gets blocked. And that’s it,” said Endy.

By using more than one transcriptor, the researchers were able to issue logical instructions, using concepts like “and” and “or,” concepts basic to silicon-based computers.

If biological computing has a future, Endy doesn’t see it embedded in a laptop or smart phone.

“We aren’t trying to replace silicon computers or mechanical computers, because they probably aren’t going to be as fast. They’re not going to be as raw-powerful. But they’re going to work in places that the existing computers we have don’t work. So it’s computing in a new space or a new place,” he said.

One place could be in agriculture. Endy gave an example of spirulina algae being grown in Thailand. It could be bio-engineered to change color if the water had heavy metals or other pollutants in it.

“And you’d get a warning saying, 'you know that batch of food you’re making isn’t safe for people to eat.'”

Applications involving human health may be further in the future, because of the need for careful safety testing. Endy said he could imagine foods with computing power that could diagnose the status of the digestive tract.

Researchers also are looking at engineering human immune cells to give them a boost in the battle against cancer.

The research paper by Drew Endy and his colleagues is published online by the journal Science.

Socially isolated elderly
die sooner, study says

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A new study has found that elderly people who have many social interactions may live longer than those who are more socially isolated.
While numerous studies have linked loneliness and social isolation with an increased risk of death, researchers of the new study say loneliness itself isn’t the problem.
What’s the difference? According to Andrew Steptoe of University College London, social isolation means limited or no contacts with friends and family, or involvement in clubs or sports.
“Loneliness is a more subjective experience to do with a person’s feelings of companionship or feeling left out,” he says.
Because there’s a lot of overlap between clinical definitions of loneliness and social isolation, Steptoe and his colleagues wanted to see which factored more significantly into rates of increased mortality.
Working with data from a large study of older men and women called the English Longitudinal Study of Aging, Steptoe says they found no significant correlation between higher death risks and loneliness. But upon conducting statistical analysis, he says, his colleagues found "that social isolation was indeed related to higher risk of dying."
Aside from the obvious fact that socially active individuals, due to their increased likelihood of being in physical proximity to others, are more likely to survive a life-threatening situation, Steptoe offers some clues about why people with more social contacts are likely to live longer.
“Receiving encouragement to do things or not to do things, other people to help you with your medications or take you to the doctor, and things of that sort — which are not so much to do with the emotional side of it as more the practical side — it could be that those are the more important factors here,” he says.
Steptoe says research similar to his Britain-based study is underway in other parts of the world, where traditional social patterns are changing.
“In many developing countries, of course, people with a rural background are moving into the larger cities, where the social connections are very, very different," he says. "Often it’s the younger people who are moving, leaving older people in the more rural areas, and so these kind of social connections are going to be changed dramatically.”
The research by Steptoe and colleagues into the role social isolation plays in higher death risk among the elderly is published online by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Eurozone minister says
Cyprus cash grab unique

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has said savings accounts in the eurozone are safe, adding that Cyprus is a special case and not a template for future rescues.

In an interview with Bild newspaper published Saturday, Schaeuble distanced himself from comments on Monday by Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who said the rescue program agreed for Cyprus, the first to impose a levy on bank deposits, would serve as a model for future crises.

"Cyprus is and will remain a special one-off case," Schaeuble said. "The savings accounts in Europe are safe."

Schaeuble said the problem in Cyprus was that two large banks in Cyprus were in effect no longer solvent and the Cyprus government did not have enough money to guarantee savings.

"That's why the other eurozone countries had to help," he said. "Together in the Eurogroup we decided to have the owners and creditors take part in the costs of the rescue, in other words those who helped cause the crisis."

Schaeuble said he was confident Cyprus would be able to completely pay back the help. "Cyprus's economy will now go through a long and painful period of adjustment. But then it will pay back the loan when it is on a solid economic foundation," he said.

Schaeuble said the euro was stronger today than at any time since 2010.

Low-cost projects target
developing country problems

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Innovations and inventions which can help people in developing countries were on display recently in Washington.

Cutting-edge ideas of 13 college teams from across the United States, included a portable greenhouse, a better container for vaccines, and an earthquake-resistant concrete panel.

Many small-scale farmers in East Africa find it hard to grow crops year-round because of drought or too much rain. So a student team from Pennsylvania State University came up with the idea of kits to build small, easy-to-set up greenhouses to help the farmers increase their production up to 20 percent.  Team member Arianna DeReus says they're constructed with PVC pipe and rice bags.

“Our design is affordable, durable and expandable, and it’s also made of local materials," Ms. DeReus explained. "That reduces transportation costs and it also supports the local economy.”

The greenhouse is part of an exhibition called Open Minds, sponsored by National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance.  Each year, it gives grants to more than 50 college student teams which create business models using innovative technology to help people around the world. The top teams are chosen for an annual exhibition.

The Alliance was founded in 1995 by the Lemelson Foundation, which supports grassroots inventors.  Director Carol Dahl says the young entrepreneurs are helping to lift people out of poverty. “In the developing countries, we see the potential for our inventions to actually improve lives through addressing basic human needs, things like sanitation, access to clean water," she said. "The ability to have health and health products.”

This container may improve the health of many people in the developing world by better protecting vaccines. Standard Styrofoam boxes break easily, so the World Health Organization estimates that half the vaccines placed in them are damaged in transit.  But a student team from Oklahoma State University hopes that by using a collapsible box, temperature-sensitive vaccines will be saved.

Saravan Kumar says the boxes are made from the same space-age material used to fashion small satellites. “They’re made with this thin, insulating material, and they are about 10 times more insulating than Styrofoam, and they’re about 10 times more impact resistant,” he added.

This lightweight concrete panel may help homes in Haiti withstand an earthquake.  Students from the University of Notre Dame discovered that the masonry blocks used in Haiti are poor quality and not reinforced.

Dustin Mix says the cost of building with these panels would be about the same, for a much sturdier and safer home. “It’s a lot better quality and that comes from both the materials we use and the process we use to make them," he said. "It is also reinforced in a way that when the earthquake does come, it can withstand that.”

The students hope innovations like these will make a difference for those who need it the most.
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Since 1996, CRREC has been providing the most valuable resource for discovering real estate in Costa Rica. Our Costa Rica properties database contains some of the most exclusive and hard to find properties in the country. Not to mention how affordable some of our Costa Rica homes for sale are. So if you're in the market for Costa Rica real estate then we encourage you to
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Real estate for sale (paid category)

Casa de Eden
For sale by owner Playa Conchal home. Reduced $329,000

Casa de Eden is an ocean view three-bedroom, 2.5-bath, with outdoor shower, private pool located only minutes from Playa Conchal.  The home is in a private, secure community surrounded by nature but still only 20 minutes to the resort towns of Flamingo & Tamarindo and less than an hour from the Liberia airport. There is 2,600 square feet under the roof, which includes a large outdoor terrace and has phone, Internet & satellite TV. The home boasts luxury finishings: AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire professional series stainless steel appliances, granite kitchen countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom wood cabinetry, ceramic tile.  Contact  U.S. 1-800-939-2617 or CR (506) 8349-2025.

Pirate beach
For sale by owner: Ocean view condominium. Reduced $175,000

Gorgeous two- bedroom, two-bath with private terrace offering spectacular ocean views and built-in energy efficiently. This condo is located in a gated community with low HOA dues and offers amenities including a pool & rancho.  It is located close to a beautiful white sandy Pirates Beach. Only 20 minutes to the resort towns of Flamingo & Tamarindo and less than an hour from the Liberia airport.  Luxury finishings: Pella double panel windows, AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire stainless steel appliances, granite kitchen countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom wood cabinetry, porcelain tile. Contact  U.S. 1-800-939-2617 or CR (506) 8349-2025.

This is a well distributed condo, very spacious and meticulously maintained. It sells furnished with quality furnishings and appliances. 3 bedrooms, 3 baths and lots of storage place. It's a 2,200-sq. foot condo with double garage. Ideally located 20 minutes south of Jacó. It comes with a free beach club membership at Monterey Hotel in Esterillos. Call 2778-8408 or 8707-1037. Email or
Las Escadas
Welcome to our Paradise
Las Escadas – Condomimium & Club
San Juan del Sur – Nicaragua

1 and 2 bedroom condos from $ 39,900.
Las Escadas Condominiums & Club is the best Investment opportunity for those who want to live surrounded on all sides with nature and very closes to many beautiful beaches, amazing places with rich history and culture.
Security entrance – Administrative office – Swimming pool – Children's playground – Reserved parking available – Basketball court – pathways – Underground utilities.
Only $ 99 to reserve your Unit. Limited time offer
Cell English +505 8588-9827 – Cell Spanish/English 8551-4391

Nicoya views
Property with ocean and gulf view for sale
Tranquil million dollar view, 5,000-sq.meter property with 3/2 home built to American standards, artistically designed and decorated, 16-foot ceilings of mango and tamarindo, appliances, plunge pool, rancho, caretaker apartment, workshop, covered parking, views of Gulf of Nicoya and ocean, in countryside near San José to Caldera highway. Near the lovely town of Esparza. Can provide extra income from bed and breakfast room rental and stellar Tripadvisor reviews. $180,000 506-8869-9274.

View from Orosi home

Majestically situated overlooking the Orosi Valley and the tropical rain forest, this 2-bedroom, 2½-bath home with a separate office is offered at $550,000.  From the extensive use of glass windows visitors are easily captivated by the unbelievably 7 acres of pure, natural Costa Rican landscape.   The property is located 15 minutes from the Cartago metropolitan area, an hour from San José, 1¼ hours to the Juan Santamaria International Airport, 2 hours to the beaches of the Pacific West Coast, or 3 ½  hours to the beaches of the southern Caribbean coast.
USA 678-799-8803
CR Cell 011-506-8-910-2904

You can purchase property in Costa Rica legally without paying Land Transfer Tax; this plus the usual real estate commission of 5% will reduce your purchase price by approximately 11%. Save over $50,000.00 on the purchase of this $465,000.00 property. Large 5000+ sq.ft. House. Ideal for business executive, B & B or large family. E-mail for photos and more information to

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:

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

Montemar montage
Gated community near the beach
SALE on our last 4 lots! Starting at just $20k with financing available.
Deep discounts for cash sales!
Reserve today with just $5,000 down
Great retirement, vacation, or investment option!
Lots of wildlife on the property. Gated front entrance, caretakers house.
Water and power on site.
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891

Rich Coast Montage
Central Pacific Coast Real Estate
- 2-bedroom house in gated community, $92,500.
- Lots in gated community from $20k w/financing available.
- 3-bedroom house in gated community, furnished, walk to the beach, $125k
- 3-bedroom oceanview house on 5 acres subdividable, $270k
- 58-acre oceanview property subdividable, $169k
Oceanfront residential Lot $58k
and much more....
USA Toll Free 1 866 833 4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718 9891

Ocean view home
Georgeous House For Sale In Costa Rica
Gorgeous house built 5 years ago to U.S. standards on 37,000 sq. ft TITLED property. This is a very special and rare property because of the INCREDIBLE OCEAN VIEW and excellent location. This one of a kind home and property is truly a must see. Ocean view Only $345 000.00 US More details:
Jack 506-2778-8172    Email:

just reduced
Just Reduced to $169,000!!!
58-acre oceanview and mountainview property

Segregated into 9 lots, Excellent Development Potential!
20 minutes from the beach Central Pacific Coast, between Jacó and Quepos.
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montage ofr photos
ALAZAN Eco-Friendly Community

- Ocean, mountain, and river views, built in harmony with nature
- 70% sold out, 1.25 acre + lots available from $75,000
- All lots held in separate corporations
- Functioning HOA with 24-hour security and gated front entrance
- 100% custom homes, turnkey construction
- Community homes have been featured in Su Casa Architectural Magazine
- Abundant wildlife on the property, access to 45-acre nature preserve
- Organic Permaculture farm coming soon
- Build your custom dream home and join our community of friends in paradise!
Brokers Welcome
USA Toll Free 1 866 833 4005
CR Cell 011 (506) 8718-9891

beachfront one
beachfront three
Price slashed for quick sale.
Beautiful, completely remodeled beachfront home for sale.

Great location in between Quepos and Parrita. Please visit this Web site for complete details: Price recently reduced for quick sale. Email or call 713-775-9283.

Costa Azul view
costa azul ocean
Properties in Osa near the ocean.
50% discount from the valuation price, starting at $30.000.
Financing available. Contact us at +506 2233-7778 or +506 8815-6476.
Grupo Costa Azul – A property waiting for you!

Real estate services
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Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)7115-12/16/11

Would you like to start a chain of pizzerias  in Costa Rica?
If you have the money,   I have the ideas and the basis to start. Buy the place,
and I'll work for you! Only serious inquiries. Money or property in C.R.
Call  Mike  (506) 8375 4287 or after 1 p.m. Call to  (506) 2241 1068.

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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The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 1, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 63
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Canadian forces conclude
operation in Caribbean basin

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

Canadian armed forces have concluded its first naval deployment of 2013, Operation Caribbe.
Operation Caribbe is part of the government’s continued commitment to combat illicit trafficking in the Caribbean basin and Eastern Pacific. As part of this commitment, the "Kingston" and "Summerside" conducted a 36-day deployment while a Royal Canadian Air Force CP-140 Aurora maritime aircraft flew patrols from Jan. 7 to 19 to help suppress trafficking in international waters.

“This deployment demonstrates to Canadians and our allies the important contributions the men and women of Canada’s Naval Reserve make in ensuring our coastal waters are protected,” said Peter MacKay, minister of national defense. “Canada will continue its contribution to Operation Caribbe so we can defend against all threats and security challenges to Canada, North America and its approaches.”

This is the second time the "Kingston" has been deployed on Operation Caribbe. That ship, along with "Goose Bay," conducted surveillance operations in the western Caribbean from March 2 to April 6, 2012. This deployment marks a number of achievements for the maritime coastal defense vessels including the embarkation of a U. S. Coast Guard law enforcement detachment team and the use of the side scan sonar to search for sunken objects associated with counter narcotics trafficking in the Caribbean Basin. Primarily crewed by naval reservists, maritime coastal defense vessels are mainly used for coastal surveillance and patrol.

“Through our engagement in the Americas, Canada has played an instrumental role in boosting security in the hemisphere,” said Diane Ablonczy, minister of state of foreign affairs. “By working in partnership to patrol the Caribbean, we are strengthening ties with allies in the region, confronting the scourge of transnational organized crime and helping to keep drugs away from Canadian shores.”

The Canadian Armed Forces’ participation in this operation is part of Canada’s goal to strengthen security and institutions, a cornerstone of its foreign policy priority of deepening engagement in the Americas, it said. In collaboration with other government departments and agencies, the Department of National Defense and the Canadian Armed Forces have increased its engagement in the hemisphere by participating in exercises and operations, as well as through military training and cooperation. An important part of the approach to engagement in the Americas is focused on building strategic partnerships in the region, including with the U.S. and other key partners, with whom Canada can work to address concerns of mutual interest, it said.

This recurring annual operation directly supports the Canadian Armed Forces mission to defend against threats and security challenges to Canada and North America and its approaches. Moreover, Operation Caribbe helps strengthen international and continental partnerships and demonstrates Canada’s specific commitment to improve security in Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean and to combat transnational organized crime. It also creates opportunities to partner with other nations to suppress criminal activity at sea and keep illegal drugs off Canadian streets.

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The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details