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(506) 2223-1327                                 Published Monday, April 20, 2015, in Vol. 15, No. 76                         Email us
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Security minister
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Security minister in red shirt presides at meeting of Tamarindo citizens.
Law enforcement struggles to stem rising crime
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Law enforcement officials are struggling to find solutions for increasing murders, drug smuggling and other crimes that suggest failure of the country's institutions.

The security minister said Sunday that he plans to present to the president of the Corte Suprema de Justicia and the head of the Judicial Investigating Organization a plan for an integrated task force to attack organized crime and the wave of murders believed linked to drugs.

The minister just returned from Tamarindo where he met with residents Saturday in the wake of a home invasion April 1 that took the life of a well-known tourism operator.

Also over the weekend the Ministerio de Seguridad reported an upswing in arrests when criminals were caught red-handed. The ministry said there were  7,263 persons detained that way in 2014, but the frequency has increased in the first months of this year, it said.

The murders continue. The Judicial Investigating Organization reported
the killing of a 21 year old named Rodríguez and the wounding of a 19 year old in Pavas Friday morning. Then the agency quickly reported that yet another body had been found.

Hardly any place appears to be safe. Sunday a 29-year-old woman with the last name of Crespi suffered three gunshot wounds as she was waiting in a vehicle outside the heavily guarded San Sebastián detention center. The gunman walked to the car window where he fired the shots. Then he fled on a motorcycle, said judicial agents.

The crime happened at 5 a.m. There was no explanation why the woman was there at that time, but she was identified as being a family member of individuals connected with a gang.

Even inside the prisons are not safe. Judicial police said a 21-year-old man with the last name of Juárez died in Hospital México early Sunday after being taken there from the La Reforma prison complex in Alajuela. He suffered stab wounds, agents said.

The Ministerio de Seguridad said that Gustavo Mata, the minister, would propose today the creation of an integrated strike force to crack down on organized crime and murders. Investigators say that many murders are the product of a continuing war for control by drug gangs.

Mata noted the relationship and said that he would propose an interdisciplinary team of prosecutors, investigators and judges. Under the Costa Rican law enforcement set up, Mata's Fuerza Pública is supposed to be a preventative police force that does not investigate.

The only exception is the anti-drug police in

the ministry, which does carry out extensive investigations.

The Judicial Investigating Organization is an arm of the courts which has been protective in the past over its powers to conduct investigations. It also has an anti-drug section.

Mata will make his proposal to Zarella Villanueva, the president of the Corte Suprema de Justicia; Francisco Segura, director of the Judicial Investigating Organization, and Jorge Chavarría, the fiscal general or chief prosecutor.

Prevention is the policy that Mata organized in Tamarino. He met with concerned citizens. B&B owner Barry Lawson was the man who died as the result of a home invasion April 1. The crooks got $32,000 from a safe. The bulk of the money was for various local organizations that help children.

Mata again boosted the police presence that had been boosted last week. In addition to two quadracycles and two motorcycles, Tamarindo gets a patrol car, a police headquarters and 28 officers. An additional 18 officers are now stationed in Villarreal, also in the canton of Santa Cruz.

Over the weekend these officers swept Tamarindo, Brasilito and Flamingo, all areas with a thriving drug trade. They managed to confiscate small amounts of cocaine and marijuana, said the ministry. Police also checked vehicles and more than 30 motorists received tickets for various infractions.

Residents had complained that Tamarindo was without police after the local station closed.

The stabbing in the La Reforma complex is another indication that the populations there are not fully under the control of guards. Those who have been incarcerated report that inmates have their own system of governance and charge other prisoners for such necessities as mattresses, showers and even time on the toilet.  A mattress may range from 5,000 colons a week for a Costa Rican to 80,000 colons for an expat, ex-inmates have told reporters.

The prisons also have been the scene of severe beatings for years. A recent victim was a man who is accused of killing a 2 year old.  Prisoners took it upon themselves to administer a near fatal beating to the man, and there was a delay in the intervention of guards.

Others who have served time speak of self-styled kings of the various lockups who extort money, food and other items.

As part of its preventative efforts, the Fuerza Pública also deals in outreach.  An example was a march police set up in the Sagrada Familia section of San José Friday. School children with signs marched with police officers, mounted officers and dogs and their handlers.  The marchers called for an end to violence.

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San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 20, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 76

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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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boat sinking
Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas photo        
Only a small part of the fishing boat remains above the surface.
French tourist dies in boating mishap

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A French tourist died Sunday when he and companions were on a sports fishing boat that sunk in the Golfo Dulce off Cabo Matapalo on the Osa peninsula.

The Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas identified the dead man as Aubers Nicolle, 49. The security ministry said he was the father of  Antane Nicolle, 15, and  the husband of Lidie Nicolle, 48, who survived. The fourth passenger was identified as Cedric Lemarie, also 48.

The Costa Rican boat captain was Eider Esteban Cortés Vega, 29, said the  Guardacostas.

The mishap took place about 2:45 p.m., when the boat appears to have overturned in strong winds and choppy seas. The boat was identified as  Golfito Sport Fishing Extreme.

The crew of a sister boat to the sinking craft was reported to have provided initial aid.

Some of the surviving passengers suffered injuries, said the Guardacostas. They were reported to be in the gulf making videos.

Insurance head moves to Casa Presidencial

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Sergio Alfaro Salas will take over as the minister of the Presidencia as of May 1, Casa Presidencial said Friday. He replaces Melvin Jiménez, the former Lutheran bishop.

Alfaro, 44, is executive director of the Instituto Nacional de Seguros and is a former lawmaker. Alfaro also is a lawyer and has served in government in the past.

He is expected to develop a better relationship with lawmakers so that President Luis Guillermo Solís can win passage of key legislation.

Alcohol tests to be done on saliva

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Consejo de Seguridad Vial is in the process of selecting a firm to supply saliva test devices to fight drunk driving.

The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes agency plans to buy 4,195 of the devices that measure a driver's use of alcohol. The Consejo said the devices would be much cheaper than the current policy to make blood tests on suspected drunk drivers.

The estimate of costs will be around 14 million colons or about $26,500.

The devices have the approval of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

The Consejo has a contract to test blood with the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social that expires early next month.

Four firms are seeking the saliva test contract.

Florencio del Castillo topic of discussion

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Officials from Cartago and the central government will consider if the  Autopista Florencio del Castillo should be widened. The road runs from Curridabat to Cartago.

Officials also want to consider how the highway could be connected with the  Circunvalación. A tunnel is one suggestion.

The committee will be integrated with one that has been studying the issue for months. The Instituto Costarricense de Ferrocarriles also will be represented because an electric train service also has been suggested.

Saturday quake felt in Central Valley

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A moderate earthquake estimated at from 4.7 to 5.1 magnitude took place Saturday at 5:33 p.m. about seven kilometers southeast of San Carlos de Tarrazú, said the Laboratorio de Ingeniería Sísmica at the Universidad de Costa Rica.

The quake generated movement in the Central Valley.

Our reader's opinion
He's not swayed by warming arguments

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

I have come to be referred to as an environmentalist in training due to the many years of being a Costa Rica property owner. Since I have owned 951 hectares in the Fila Chonta Mountain Region of Costa Rica overlooking the towns of Quepos and Manuel Antonio since 1995, I have become more aware of our surroundings (our planet) and the effect on it from humans.

There has been a lot of talk on both sides of the issue, and I still seem to remain a little to the right of center. I am not a scientifically educated man so I have no choice except to rely on common sense. Do humans have an effect on our environment? In my opinion, I feel the answer is yes. Is it as bad as some expound, I feel absolutely not. I have no hidden agenda in the summation of my opinion and I do not feel that this is true from most on the other side (left) of the issue.

The fact is if you took every human being on the planet Earth, current population 7.2 billion, did you know that they would all, every man, woman and child on Earth, fit in the state of Texas and Montana if we simply used the same population density that now exists in New York City, and we would still have space for 237,231,260 more folks?

No more crowded and no less crowded the same. Is New York City crowded, in this Georgia boy’s opinion, yes? Do I love to visit New York City, absolutely. Would Texas and Montana be crazy if every person on Earth lived there, probably. Would I love to visit Texas and Montana if it was populated like New York City? No way could it be as much fun as New York City, so in my opinion, probably not.

Is Christiana Figures brave? I think so. Has she brought a lot of notoriety to Costa Rica? I think yes. Is she a smart lady? We’ve met twice. I think yes. Is she a left of center on the global warming issue? I feel she is. Does she make a wonderful living by staying on the left side of this issue? I believe she does. Does she have ulterior motives in some of her conclusions and statements? I can’t get in her mind and heart, but I feel like she might.

A lot of folks do not let the facts or common sense enter into their thought processes, so many times the hidden agenda pops up. Do a little math, and it will be easy to verify these above facts. Is the planet in the catastrophic position that so many claim? You decide as I think I already have.
 Mike Michael
Quepos and Atlanta, Georgia

New definition advanced for old

By the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis news staff

Faster increases in life expectancy reflect a process in which people become healthier, generally more capable, and indeed younger in many ways even if they have lived longer lives, according to population experts at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis.

Faster increases in life expectancy do not necessarily produce faster population aging, according to new research published in the journal PLOS ONE. This counter intuitive finding was the result of applying new measures of aging developed at the institute to future population projections for Europe up to the year 2050.

“Age can be measured as the time already lived or it can be adjusted taking into account the time left to live.  If you don’t consider people old just because they reached age 65 but instead take into account how long they have left to live, then the faster the increase in life expectancy, the less aging is actually going on.” said Sergei Scherbov of the institute, who led the study in collaboration Stony Brook University researcher Warren Sanderson.

Traditional measures of age simply categorize people as old at a specific age, often 65. But previous research by Scherbov, Sanderson, and colleagues has shown that the traditional definition puts many people in the category of old who have characteristics of much younger people.

“What we think of as old has changed over time, and it will need to continue changing in the future as people live longer, healthier lives,” says Scherbov. “Someone who is 60 years old today, I would argue is middle aged. 200 years ago, a 60-year-old would be a very old person.”

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A.M. Costa Rica

Third News Page

San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 20, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 76
Real Estate
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Police become the resource
for handling stray animals

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A couple of owl chicks are the latest animals to get a helping hand from the Fuerza Pública.

The two chicks fell from a nest in Barrio El Carmen de Abrojo, Ciudad Neily, the police agency reported. The man who found them turned them over to the Fuerza Pública.

The police agency frequently is the contact for the public in the cases of wild animals, be they sloth, deer, turtles or similar. There also have been a few snakes.

Police at the Ciudad Neily station accepted the owl chicks and got them some meals Saturday. The menu was steak.

Sunday workers at the local office of the Ministerio del Ambiente y Energía picked up the birds and took them to a refuge in Golfito where they will be raised until they can be returned to the wilds, said police.

Costa Rica hosts at least 14 different owl species. Without seeing the parents, the species of the chicks will not be known for some time.

Although expats may consider the owls rural animals, the birds can be seen even in downtown San José perched on a vantage point awaiting the appearance of a sewer rat or some other meal.

owl chick
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
This is one of the two owl chicks.

restoration contest
Centro de Investigación y Conservación del Patrimonio Cultural photos
 The  Cementerio General de San José was the 2014 winner. The Antigua Capitanía de Puerto de Limón won in 2013.
Culture ministry will sponsor another restoration project for 2016
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A culture ministry agency is again in search of an historic building worth restoring.

The agency, the Centro de Investigación y Conservación del Patrimonio Cultural, has announced the opening of its annual architectural competition. The Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud agency offers 120 million colons to help restore a
worthy building, public or private. That is about $227,000.
The agency has been making grants to restore buildings since 1997.

The proposals are made by architects who have in mind a specific structure that the Centro determines has social value.

The project can be anywhere in the country, the Centro noted.

The competition closes July 27, and the winner will be announced later in the year for work to be done in 2016.

Investigators weigh possibility of suicide in bizarre death in Puriscal
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Judicial investigators said Friday that they think that the death of  Robert Lemon Stewart could be a suicide but that the investigation continues.

Friends of the man, who lived in Grifo Alto de Puriscal, present the picture of a Vietnam veteran suffering periodic bouts of depression.

If the death is a suicide, it ranks among some of the more bizarre. The theory is that Stewart created a bed of branches, ignited it and then killed himself so that he would fall into the fire.

The man has not been seen by neighbors or friends since
Tuesday, which is why some went in search of him Thursday.

One of the man's dogs died in his home where investigators said they found blood.

The dog had been shot.

The burned area some 100 meters from the U.S. citizen's home was about 60 square meters, agents said. There is where a second dog was and the burned bones presumed to be those of Stewart.

Judicial agents reported they were told that the man said he wanted to end his life, but investigators added they are awaiting positive identification of the bones from the medical examiner as well as ballistic confirmation.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 20, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 76
Real Estate
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Mexican firm says it can purify water quickly with new tchnique
By the Investigación y Desarrollo news staff

A group of Mexican engineers from the Jhostoblak Corporate report they have created technology to recover and purify either seawater or wastewater from households, hotels, hospitals, commercial and industrial facilities, regardless of the content of pollutants and microorganisms in just 2.5 minutes.

The System PQUA, works with a mixture of elements capable of separating and removing all contaminants, as well as organic and inorganic pollutants, the firm said. "The methodology is founded on molecularly dissociating water pollutants to recover the minerals necessary and sufficient in order for the human body to function properly nourished," the technical staff said.

Notably, the engineers developed eight dissociating elements, and after extensive testing on different types of contaminated water, implemented a unique methodology that indicates what and how much of each element should be combined.

"During the purification process no gases, odors nor toxic elements that may damage or alter the environment, human health or quality of life are generated" said the Mexican firm.

The corporation has a pilot plant in their offices that was used to demonstrate the purification process, which uses gravity to save energy.  The residual water in the container was pumped to a reactor tank where it received a dosing of the dissociating elements in predetermined amounts.

In this phase solid, organic and inorganic matter as well as heavy metals are removed by precipitation and gravity and a sludge settles at the bottom of the reactor. The latter is removed and examined to determine if it is suitable to use as fertilizer or to manufacture construction materials.

Subsequently, the water is conducted to a clarifier tank to
sediment out the excess charge of dissolved elements. Then the liquid reaches a filter to remove turbidity and is  finally passed by a polishing tank that eliminates odors, colors and
Jhostoblak Corporate photo
Technician displays water that will be purified.

flavors. The treated water is transported to a containerwhere ozone is added to ensure its purity, and finally is ready to drink. The resulting liquid is fresh, odorless and has a neutral taste, the firm said.

"We have done over 50 tests on different types of wastewater and all have been certified and authorized by the laboratories of the Mexican Accreditation Agency. Also, the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, the College of Mexico and the National Polytechnic Institute have given their validation that the water treated with our technology meets the SSA NOM 127 standard, which indicates the parameters and quality characteristics for vital liquid to be used for human consumption," said the corporation in a release.

Moreover, the firm reported that this development is protected under trade secret in America and soon will get the same protection in Switzerland. Its implementation in the market will depend on the needs of users and the issue of new laws regarding use, consumption and water discharge, the firm said.

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at the largest gallery in Guanacaste.

The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is a great place to find quality remembrances of Costa Rica to take home or to decorate your home or office in Costa Rica.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever.  With more than 60 artists on exhibit and fine art in 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we are easy to locate just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport. Visit our Web site at
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The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

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

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

Ask the others what you get for your money, and then compare the quality of accommodations, quality, quantity and variety of food and drink to measure the best value for your money. 

Learn how others “talk the talk” and learn who really can “walk the walk”

Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
George Lundquist, retirement, relocation columnist, Guide & Developer/Builder.


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

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A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
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Real estate rental services (paid category)

The vacation homes at Manuel Antonio Estates offers luxury, comfort and peace of mind. We have numerous homes from 2 bedrooms to 8 bedrooms ocean view with private pool,  all within walking distance of the town’s shops and restaurants and just a few minutes to the best beaches and the famous Manuel Antonio national park. While the homes are secluded and hidden among the rainforest, the surrounding area offers adventures like zip lines, whitewater rafting, mangrove kayaking and many more. All of the homes are available for short-term rentals, Fully equipped, Pool, concierge,  parking, cable TV, and Internet. We are happy to assist with all your need for the perfect Costa Rican vacation, Call us for your family vacation package.
TOLL FREE: 1800 346=9724 or (506) 2777-3339

Costa Rica,

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

Visit our Web Site:

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

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
Offer of the month !!  Great opportunity to get this beautiful house. 3 hectares land (equal to 30.000 meters), 750 square meters construction, modern security technology, three floors, internal street, elevator. $ 1.1 million  Click HERE!
Grecia 909
Beautiful house for rent, inside a private property. Very secure. Price $1,500 . See more photos HERE!
Grecia 907
Beautiful house for rent, near to Puente Piedra street . Very secure. Price $1,000 . More photos HERE!
  Send us your request to our email:

Real estate for rent (paid category)

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

Condo in Jacó for rent
Two-bedroom, 1-bath condominium available for rent starting June 1st in Corteza del Sol in the Quebrada Seca, just across the Costanera from Jacó. 24-hour security, wifi/cable, AC, luxurious amenities, kitchen includes everything you need to cook, gorgeous pools just steps from your front door. 15 minute walk to town or quick bike ride. ¢2,000 taxi to center of town. Short-term renter is fine. Long-term would be great! Looking for someone low-key who will fit in well with the complex. $950/month including cable & internet, NOT INCLUDING ELECTRIC! Call 8725-0344 or email

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Homes for rent in Palmares, Alajuela

See our web page:

Condo for rent.
Conveniently located just a 200-meter walk to the beach. In the favorite community of Las Palmas, this condo is a perfect vacation home and/or great for vacation rental income.  The condo is located on the 2nd level offering beautiful vaulted ceilings, front and back balcony, pool and mountain view. Screens in every window/door, Air condition in both bedrooms and at living room. The condo is in perfect condition. It has been recently painted and super well-kept, new appliances, fully furnished. Wired to have own washer dryer. It has been the residence of the owners since they built it. Never rented out to third parties. The owners are selling as they are moving to the Central Valley.  The community has a great-size pool and beautiful landscaping and large parking. Just step out your condo and in less than 5-minute walk be swimming in the ocean! A must see! Rate $795 per month. Contact Bob Mobile C.R. ( 506 ) 8392-7520. E-mail:

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

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

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

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San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 20, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 76
Real Estate
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Salmonella used to fight
cancer cells in lab animals

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Millions of people are sickened each year by the food-borne bacteria Salmonella. But a genetically-engineered version of the pathogen may someday be used as a weapon against cancer. 

Salmonella is the most common bacteria to contaminate food.  Found in undercooked meats, eggs and milk, the microbe can cause severe nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever. One strain of Salmonella is also responsible for typhoid.

But researchers in the U.S. and Germany have turned Salmonella into a weapon against cancerous tumors.

“Yeah, it causes them to disappear," said Roy Curtiss, a microbiologist at the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University in Tempe.

In experiments with mice, Curtiss and colleagues targeted solid tumors grown by human cancer cells, injected into the rodents.

He says they used Salmonella bacteria, that had been programmed in the laboratory, to destroy those cells.

“We genetically modify the Salmonella so it is unable to survive in healthy tissues, but has a preferential homing to tumors, . . . a very nutrient-rich environment where they grow like crazy and, in so doing, kill the cancer cells within the tumor," he said.

An article describing the work is published in the journal mBio.

Curtiss is fascinated with Samonella, which he thinks gets a bad rap.

“I’m always looking for new uses for a bug that most people think is an enemy. It’s my friend. And I’d like to make it your friend too," he said.

Curtiss’ work has led him to create a vaccine against tuberculosis that he says is more effective against TB than the current BCG vaccine used in many countries to prevent the lung ailment.

Researchers have also developed a poultry vaccine that prevents campylobacter in chickens so they are not infected and spread the illness to humans who eat undercooked meat by accident.

But Curtiss says it will be a while before the genetically-modified version of Salmonella enters human clinical trials.  He wants to tweak the bacteria further to increase their potency against cancer.

Salmonella would not be a stand-alone anti-cancer therapy.  Instead, Curtiss envisions the modified bacteria being used alongside more traditional treatments, including chemotherapy and radiation, to fight cancer.

Washington Earth Day rally
brings litany of big names

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

An all-day Earth Day rally and concert Saturday drew some big names to the National Mall in Washington and into the world of politics to confront the dual issues of climate change and poverty.

Usher, Mary J. Blige, Gwen Stefani, Common, Fall Out Boy and Train performed at the free Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day rally hosted by rapper/entrepreneur and journalist Soledad O'Brien. The event drew a crowd of thousands near the Washington Monument.

The rally is a joint initiative with the Global Poverty Project, which live-streamed the event, to end extreme poverty. Organizers are seeking to highlight the problems of poverty and climate change around the world. They are also encouraging participants to commit to making environmentally friendly acts of green this year, and asking attendees to sign petitions for a U.N. conference on climate change planned for Paris in December.

"Whether it's the big migrations we expect to see or soil depletion or emptying the oceans, loss of species, loss of timberland — all these things are creating poverty at the same time that they are also creating climate change issues," said Kathleen Rogers, Earth Day Network president. “Eliminating poverty will require solving climate change.”

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, actor Don Cheadle and Coldplay's Chris Martin addressed the attendees.

Usher performed on crutches because of a fractured foot but drew big cheers, singing his hits "Yeah!'' and "OMG'' and teaming up with Common to sing the beginning of "Glory,'' the Oscar-winning song from the movie "Selma.''

"To end poverty, it starts, in my opinion, with an education about it,'' Usher told the crowd. "I want you to go and investigate for yourself so that you can really understand what's going on.''

Backstage before his performance, Train frontman Patrick Monahan said he didn't know much before about the environmental movement and the push to end extreme poverty. But now he wants to stay involved permanently.

"It's about all of us being aware but getting our hands dirty because it's not going to be an easy thing,'' Monahan said. ``Whatever I can do to help legislation change, which is a humongous thing, and to get dollars to go to different places.''

Monahan said he's been inspired by the charitable work of Coldplay's Martin and Hugh Evans of the Global Poverty Project, which has set a goal to end extreme poverty by 2030.

Earth Day organizers also announced plans with developers of the popular Angry Birds game to create a new in-game experience about climate change. Angry Birds has been downloaded 2.8 billion times worldwide. The game's climate change campaign will coincide with the U.N. General Assembly in September as world leaders tackle sustainability goals.

Earth Day is officially observed on April 22. This year marks Earth Day's 45th anniversary.

Earlier, President Barack Obama said in his weekly address that there is "no greater threat to our planet than climate change."

"Climate change can no longer be denied or ignored," with 14 of the 15 hottest years on record happening in the first 15 years of this century, he said.  Last year was the warmest recorded year.

The Earth's rising temperatures are having "very serious implications," the president said, including stronger storms, deeper droughts and longer wildfire seasons. 

The U.S. leader said he would observe Earth Day on Wednesday at Florida's Everglades, a location he described as "one of the most special places in our country" and "one of the most fragile." He said rising sea levels are putting the national treasure at risk.

The world is looking to the U.S. to take a leadership role in dealing intelligently with climate change, Obama said. "And that's what we're doing," he said, adding that America is using more clean energy than ever before and is number one in wind power use. He said other measures taken include an increasing number of energy-efficient cars and buildings that save consumers money.

FBI admits its lab techs
gave flawed court testimony

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department have formally acknowledged that almost all of the examiners in an elite FBI forensic unit gave flawed testimony against criminal defendants for more than two-decades before 2000, a leading newspaper reports.

The Washington Post reported Saturday that the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Innocence Project said 26 of the 28 examiners with the FBI Laboratory's microscopic hair comparison unit overstated forensic matches to favor prosecutors in more than 95 percent of the 268 trials reviewed.

The reviewed cases included 32 defendants who were sentenced to death. Fourteen of them have either been executed or died in prison, the two groups said.

The errors by the FBI do not mean there was not other evidence to convict the defendants.

An FBI and Justice Department statement said they "are committed to ensuring that affected defendants are notified of past errors and justice is done in every instance."

Defendants and prosecutors across the United States are being notified so they can determine whether they have grounds for appeals.

The criminal defense association and the Innocence Project are working with the government in what The Post described as "the country's largest post-conviction review of questioned forensic evidence."

Innocence Project co-founder Peter Neufeld said the FBI's use of microscopic hair analysis to incriminate defendants was a complete disaster. He called for an exhaustive investigation into how this happened and why it was not stopped sooner.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat from the northeastern state of Connecticut, told the Washington Post "these findings are appalling and chilling in their indictment of our criminal justice system."

Electronic waste is called
an urban mine for metals

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A record amount of electronic waste was generated last year, according to a United Nations University report.

In 2014, 41.8 million tons of e-waste, mostly cell phones, refrigerators, washing machines and other domestic appliances, were dumped around the globe. Less than a sixth of that was properly recycled said the report prepared by the U.N.'s education and research branch.

The United States and China generated the most waste. However, countries that regard themselves as environmentally conscious topped the list for per-capita waste, leading with Norway and followed by Switzerland, Iceland, Denmark and Britain.

"Worldwide, e-waste constitutes a valuable urban mine, a large potential reservoir of recyclable material," said U.N. Under-Secretary-General David Malone.

According to the report, metals in discarded devices included gold, silver, iron and copper worth $52 billion.

But, Malone also cautioned that electronic waste was a "toxic mine that must be managed with extreme care," a reference to components such as lead, cadmium, chromium, and mercury found in some dumped waste.

The worldwide volume of e-waste is on target to reach 50 million tons in 2018, according to the U.N. report.

Islamic State says it killed
30 Ethiopian Christians

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The Islamic State claims to have massacred 30 Ethiopian Christians in Libya, in a video similar to previous publicized killings by the extremist militants.

The graphic footage posted online Sunday shows one group of men beheaded on a beach as they knelt in front of their executioners, and another shot in the back of the head at a different location.

The grisly deaths are documented at the end of a nearly 30-minute video that describes the Islamic State view on Christianity and its efforts to convert non-Muslims.

In February, the Islamic State released a similar video of members decapitating Egyptian Christians.

An Arab League official told the French news agency military chiefs from the region would meet in Cairo this week to discuss creating a joint military force against Islamic State militants.

A United States-led coalition of several regional partners continued attacks against the Islamic State nerve-center Sunday with 12 air strikes in Iraq and one in Syria.

In Ethiopia, government spokesman Redwan Hussein said officials were in contact with its embassy in Cairo to verify the video's authenticity. Hussein said he believed those killed likely were Ethiopian migrants hoping to reach Europe. Libya has become a hub for migrants across Africa hoping to cross the Mediterranean to enter Europe for work and better lives.
"If this is confirmed, it will be a warning to people who wish to risk and travel to Europe through the dangerous route,'' Hussein said.
Abba Kaletsidk Mulugeta, an official with the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahdo Church's Patriarchate Office, said he also believed the victims likely were migrants.
"I believe this is just another case of the IS group killing Christians in the name of Islam. Our fellow citizens have just been killed on a faith-based violence that is totally unacceptable. This is outrageous,'' Mulugeta said. "No religion orders the killing of other people, even people from another religion.''

Ethiopia long has drawn the anger of Islamic extremists over its military's attacks on neighboring Somalia, whose population is almost entirely Muslim. While the militant in the video at one point said "Muslim blood that was shed under the hands of your religion is not cheap,'' it did not specifically mention the Ethiopian government's actions.
After the February killings of the Coptic Christians, Egypt's military responded with air strikes targeting the militant stronghold of Darna. It has not launched further strikes, though its president is trying to form a pan-Arab military force to respond to extremist threats in the region.

Meanwhile, a United States-led coalition of several regional partners continued attacks against the Islamic State nerve-center on Sunday, with 12 air strikes in Iraq and one in Syria.

Strikes in Iraq's western Anbar province have stopped militants from advancing in recent days, Provincial Chairman Sebah Al Heblousi said.

"The U.S.-led coalition in the past two days has air strikes on the very important and sensitive targets of the Islamic State that have stopped terrorists from further advances. We appreciate the efforts by the coalition, but we need more aid to eliminate the Islamic State from Anbar province," Hebolousi said.

More than 90,000 people have fled their homes in the area as militants gained ground, the United Nations said Sunday.

"Our top priority is delivering life-saving assistance to people who are fleeing: food, water and shelter are highest on the list of priorities," said Lise Grande the U.N. humanitarian coordinator for Iraq.

Al Heblousi said some aid is arriving to parts of the province, including food and water for displaced residents, as well as police and military forces.

1,000 mark 20th anniversary
of Oklahoma bomb attack

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

About 1,000 gathered at the former site of the Oklahoma City federal building to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the terrorist bombing there that killed 168 people and injured many others.

Former president Bill Clinton and Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin were among those who spoke at Sunday's service at the Oklahoma City National Memorial, where the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building once stood.
The service started with a 168-second moment of silence and concluded with survivors and tearful relatives of the dead reading the names of those killed in the April 19, 1995, attack, which remains the worst U.S. act of domestic terrorism.

"Twenty years ago, domestic terrorists struck at the heart of all that this country stands for, liberty, democracy and the rule of law," U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said, adding that "through the resilience of the American people," the nation recommitted itself to the fundamental values "that make this country a beacon of freedom."

Anti-government militant Timothy McVeigh detonated a rental truck full of explosives parked in front of the building. The blast was so severe that it ripped the entire front off the Federal Building and damaged other buildings within a 16-block radius.

McVeigh, who conceived and carried out the bombing, was executed in 2001. His accomplice Terry Lynn Nichols remains in prison for life.

The Oklahoma City bombing thrust Diane Koch into the life of a crime victim's advocate for 13 years, until she realized she had to leave the state to start a new chapter of life.
Bud Welch said his ability to eventually forgive enabled him to survive emotionally after the death of his daughter. For Jannie Coverdale, though, there's no such thing' as moving on, even after two decades.
All three lost loved ones 20 years ago Sunday. However, all three took different paths as they tried to come to grips with a pain that never fully heals.
Ms. Koch initially sought justice for her husband and the 167 other people killed in the attack, eventually becoming an advocate for victims of all crimes in a role at the Oklahoma Attorney General's Office.
"It was my life for 13 years,'' Ms. Koch said. "I just had a heart for those who have been hurt by crime and still do.''
But the intensity she threw at her job prevented her from letting go of the trauma of April 19, 1995.
"The first few years, I couldn't see beauty anywhere,'' she said. "You can't even see sunshine. You're blinded to anything positive, it seems like.''

For Ms. Koch, now 68, remarried and living in another state, moving on meant moving away.
"Peace was such a hard thing to access for so many years. It's a wonderful thing to access now,'' she said. "You can let go of it being the controlling thing in your life every day. There is life beyond April 19th, not that April 19th goes away. It's still a part of each and every one of us. But you can focus on other things and have a wonderful life.''
Welch's slain daughter, Julie Marie Welch, was a 23-year-old Spanish-language translator for the Social Security Administration. He said his emotional journey has allowed him to become a resource for the families of other victims of terrorism, including relatives of victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
"I think me traveling and speaking has helped me a lot with my healing process,'' said Welch, 75. "I've had many of them come up to me and say: `How do I get where you are?' I say, `I've had more time than you have.' It takes time to go through a process. It takes a lot longer for some than others.''
Initially filled with rage over the murder of his daughter, Welch said he forgave McVeigh and Nichols in 2000.
"When you're able to finally forgive, it releases you. It has nothing to do with the perpetrator of the crime. It has to do with you,'' said Welch, who has become an outspoken critic of the death penalty.
"Killing someone else is not part of the healing process,'' Welch said.
Donna Weaver, whose slain husband, Michael D. Weaver, was an attorney for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, said she has managed to have fun memories' again after raising two sons who were 16 and 12 when their father died. Each anniversary is tough, though.
"April is not my best month. There's a cloud, a weight that descends on me,'' she said.
Jannie Coverdale, whose 5-year-old grandson Aaron and 2-year-old grandson Elijah were killed, said time hasn't really healed her pain.
"I miss my boys,'' said Coverdale, 77. "There's no such thing as going on with your life, not the life I had before the bombing. I'm still trying to build a new life. And I don't know if I'm ever going to get it accomplished. Too many memories.''

Talks slated to resume
on trans-Atlantic trade deal

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. and European negotiators are resuming talks today in New York on a controversial trans-Atlantic trade deal.

The proposal is supported by both U.S. President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, leader of Europe's biggest economy. But the prospect of a deal drew thousands of street protesters in Germany over the weekend.

"We say no, we do not want this," Munich protester Lisa Munz said. "It is enough what is going on here in Germany with genetic engineering.''

The new round of talks are the ninth negotiating session since last year.

Officials say a U.S.-Europe deal would add $100 billion annually to the economies on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

It would slash the already low tariffs between the world's largest individual economy, the United States, and the 28-nation European Union, which has a collective economy that is even bigger than that of the U.S. A pact would unify many regulations on the two continents and affect goods and services on a wide range of products and services, including such diverse items as Roquefort cheese and accounting.

But opponents say that powerful corporate interests have more to gain than consumers in such a deal, lowering food and safety standards. The most contentious proposal would allow corporations to sue governments in courts that are above national laws.

In Germany, the opposition also reflects rising anti-Americanism. The sentiments have been fueled in part by revelations of U.S. spying, including the wiretapping of Ms. Merkel's cell phone.

Friday, Obama called for the negotiations to move forward.

"Now that Congress is considering important bipartisan legislation for trade promotion authority, TTIP negotiations need to make major progress this year," he told a joint news conference with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.

Top U.S. lawmakers reached a deal Thursday on legislation giving President Obama trade promotion authority to seal the trans-Atlantic agreement, as well as another key accord with Asian nations, with Congress only able to vote up or down on the agreements, not make changes.
Real estate-related services (paid category)

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Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

Mafi Real Estate: Houses, lots and farms in Costa Rica

Visit our Web Page:

If you do not find you are looking for in our page, contact us, WE HAVE A NETWORK OF OVER 500 brokers across the country to get what you are looking for.

English Calls:
Miguel Fiatt Sauma 
or Paule Ortiz
Phone/Fax.+506 2238-5029
Cel. +506 8399-7000

Send us your request to our
Mafri one
Beautiful house in Santa Ana, Valley and mountain view. Price: $1,300,000. Single story, bedrooms. 5 baths. Double-size garage: 360 m2. Lot: 4,487 m2. 
Click HERE!

Mafri two
San Isidro de Heredia. Great lot with 3 houses. $3,200,000 single story. 1,505 m2 Lot: 37,419m2  Click HERE!
Mafri three
Finca Las Trufas, San Ramon-Esparza, Price: $3,900,000 Farm and ranch. Single story 1,500 m2. on 25 hectares Click HERE!


CoopeAgri Real Estate

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

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A Buyer’s Broker offering the best
of Costa Rica Real Estate.
For those looking for quality properties and service at quality prices. Central Valley Rentals. Offering honesty, experience and knowledge. Your Villa Real Expert. Call us now  Toll Free (877) 845-4533. In Costa Rica 4030-5480 or 8339-2112.

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Re/Max Ocean Surf and Sun:

The experts in buying property in Costa Rica, with more than 20 years experience and the largest networked team of agents in the country.  We can help you learn if investing in Costa Rica is right for you with our low-key, educational approach to sales. Our professional agents can tell you more about Costa Rica properties, including condos, homes, lots and commercial real estate.  Call us: Ocean Surf and Sun Int. Realty Ldta at 011 (506) 2653-0073 or send us an email at:

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

Check with our Web site at
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
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Real estate for sale (paid category)

They say a stock market crash is overdue.  Is your money in the bank earning only pennies in interest?  Is it time to get some of your assets out of the United States and into a wonderful retirement location?  That was this owner’s plan.  Gross ROI for this property was 11% most recent 5 months with 1,129 m2 lot crying for development of more rentals.  Build two or even three inexpensive fourplexes and live off of the income the rest of your life.  But current owner is unable to stay in Costa Rica (divorce, health reasons) so must sacrifice retirement dream property.  Offered at only $140,000 by extremely motivated seller and cash talks!  Very desirable location only a short 5-minute walk to central La Fortuna, clean and modern construction 2 bedroom 1 bath home is 102 m2 with no wasted space, very livable.  THIS ABSOLUTELY MUST BE SOLD!  For interior pix email
or phone (506) 8377-8402.

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 $239,000.  Call  Jeff: 8824-8113 or 8725-8176.  Email:

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

Costa Rica Villas For Sale
*In 2009 this property appraisal for $240,000  (two hundred forty thousand).
*Located in Paraiso, Cartago, Costa Rica.
*We spent over $70,000 in renovating the villa.
*The first floor has renters with a year lease. They pay $200 a month.
*Health reasons need to return to the U.S.A.
*One of Costa Rica famous waterfalls, 100 yards in front of the villa.
*I'll sell this property for $189,000.
*Visit my Web site
Contact in Costa Rica:  Cray phone (506) 8977-2777
Contact in USA: Billy phone  001 (678) 576-5107

For sale: Titled beachfront lot 1/2 acre (1,750m2) near Jacó $89,000. Just one hour drive from San José.
Panoramic ocean view lot 1.25 acres (5,000m2) 25 minutes from Tamarindo  $25,000.
Panoramic ocean view lot  5,400 sq. ft. (500m2)  $6,500. Financing available.
For rent two-bedroom house  five minute walk to water $350 a month.
Call 6261-7932 Or email See this Web site:

Shangra la
Located in Jacó in the best and safest location possible, at Barrio Ricos y Famosos in Calle Europa, Casa Shangri La.

Main house: 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, 270 square meters, 2 condominiums 2 bedrooms, one bath, 110 square meters, plus one small apartment: One bedroom, one bath. Huge pool, carport for five cars. plus double garage, rancho with pool bathroom, gymnasium, laundry room, pool plumbing room, huge dog house in separate 500-square-meter garden with aviary for birds and other animals. 60 meters of river front of Río Copey with a 4-meter-high protective and retention stone wall. Eight surveillance camera CCTV system with Internet access from anywhere. Over 2-meter-high brick wall all around the property with two layers of razor wires on top, the safest place to be! Electronic entrance gate, door phone, Beautiful gardens with many fruit trees. Built in year 2005 to highest standard by German owner now 69 years old, who wants to downgrade. Room for two more apartments, plans approved. Only 6 minutes walk to the beach and or center of Jacó.  Price reduced for quick sale to $1,150.000 and still negotiable. All fittings and furniture included. Excellent quality and well maintained. Just upgraded and remodeled for $ 30,000. Owner financing available.  More photos on request HERE! Email:  Cell 8838-2081 or home 2643-2979.

Choice 4.5 hectaares. Waterfront, titled property. Financing available for motel or hotel. Water and power on the property. $35 a  m2. In Tropical Paradise Resort. Buy all or Part at  Puerto Viejo, Limón. Call Andy at

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

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

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

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

ARenal home
Lake Arenal near San Luis and Tilarán

2 bedrooms & 2.5 baths - $279,000

Lake Arenal home (90 yards from lake) in a private 17-home gated community named Buena Vista 1 with full-time guards and views of Tenorio Volcano, Miravalles Volcano, Rincón de la Vieja Volcano and of course, Lake Arenal. This Lake Arenal climate zone provides temperatures of 75 to 85 degrees (23 to 29 C) year round, so there is NO need for heating or air conditioning and the $100's per month for fuel and energy costs !!!!! This is our property and you can see other Lake Arenal Properties at

Finca home
 Little piece of paradise near Santiago de Puriscal, Costa Rica.       

16 acres (approximately.)   Price: $599,000USD
We are selling our beautiful finca that has been in the family for 37 years. It is located 3 miles (5 k) northwest of Santiago de Puriscal in the village of Desamparaditos.  We are looking for a discriminating buyer who would appreciate the location, views, flora and fauna. Excellent for artists, writers and nature lovers. Fantastic birding. Very private but not isolated. For more  information: In the U.S.A. call the owners: Pete & Debbie Todd: 970 -221-1457 or 720-951-7928 or email In Costa Rica call: Ivo Henfling at Godutch Realty: 2289-5125/8834-4515

cndo rollover

In Alajuela , Penthouse in best location with views from all rooms. Quiet and private. Cheap to run. Extra large kitchen and balcony. Financing possible. Completely well furnished with $20,000 cost, including custom large kitchen and many cabinets. 10 minutes to Multiplaza, airport and close to highway 27, beach 45 minutes. 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms + office. Open plan granite kitchen to living room. Wheelchair accessible, covered parking place by entrance. Large pool, jacuzzi, gym and tennis. Areas for walking and running. The best location in the complex. Close to all and only $127/month maintenance. Price $125,000. Write or call at:  8391-2080, 2220-2243.

Jaco hotel

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)
Fantastic location for condo/ hotel, restaurant. Large lower lot. incredible views. Flexible zoning $2.3 M 
Easy to get liquor license.
Low interest financing
Call Bruce at: (506) 8307-0164.

Jaco hotel

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

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

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Monday, April 20, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 76
Real Estate
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News from the BBC up to the minute

BBC news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Burned earth can be a big benefit

Lots of sun and dry weather, the perfect time to get rid of those ugly piles of stuff that have accumulated for the past few months.  You know,
Victoria torley
those downed branches, twigs, and leaves that you piled up within sight of the house and are tired of looking at.  I certainly have them.

Of course, if you made your piles over there, and they are not an eyesore, you can leave them to become compost.  But not mine.  Mine are within sight of the house.  They have been within sight of the
house for over 16 months and show no sign of deteriorating, mainly because they contain huge chunks of very, very hard wood that couldn’t be used for another purpose (trust me, I am a fanatic about using what can be used).

What to do, what to do. 

Back in Georgia, you had to have a burning permit, the burning pile couldn’t be larger than prescribed, and the fire had to be out by 6 p.m.  Ha! My pile is bigger, I have no permit, and it will probably smolder for days before it is officially out!

It really is a large pile of just about everything.  We lit it Monday, rekindled it on Tuesday and Wednesday and it is still burning. This fire, however, has a dual purpose. It is not just burning waste; it is making something called burnt earth. 

The burnt earth method is a way of making clay into a sterile material suitable for use as an additive, or even a main ingredient for, potting soil.  It’s not really difficult.  What you need are large chunks of clay which you deposit on the pile before you start the fire. After the burn is done and the pile is cold, you will find that the clay has become porous and easily crushed. It literally breaks into granules in your hands. 

And the granules?  They are completely sterile, not sticky like clay, and can be mixed with compost in a ratio of three parts burnt earth and one part compost for use in planter pots.  Larger chunks of the earth are put into the planter first, and the mix is added.  The granules hold moisture beautifully, they don’t clump, so the soil is very open, and granules are large enough to allow easy growth of roots. If you use a liquid fertilizer like manure tea, the granules will soak it up and release it when you water. 

There you have it; burnt earth from the simple act of cleaning up the yard. What could be easier?

pine tree

Plant of the Day

Tall and stately, the Norfolk Island Pine is valued as an accent tree as are its relatives, the Cook Pine and the Caribbean pine.  Plant in a large pot for the deck or in the ground, but choose your space well as this pine can reach 30 meters (nearly 100 feet). Moderate salt and drought tolerance make the tree appropriate for areas close to the ocean.  As a bonus, Christmas decorations look lovely on its lateral branches.

If you would like to suggest a topic for this column, simply send a letter to the editor.  And, for more garden tips, visit

Costa Rican News
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The CAFTA Report
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From Page 7:

Profitable deal lure was trick by kidnappers

 By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A gang of crooks has been targeting foreign investors with promises of profitable business deals and a good interest rate. When the investor appears, the gang kidnaps him and seeks a ransom.

The Judicial Investigating Organization said that the gang preyed mainly on Mexican investors who were lured to the country.

One was freed Friday night, and three persons were detained by judicial investigators. The Mexican victim has been held since April 11, and the kidnappers sought a $50,000 ransom, said agents.

Agents grabbed one suspect in Alajuela. They said the victim was being moved to another location. From that detention, agents said they were able to locate two other suspects at their homes.

 Agents said they may be seeking other suspects.