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(506) 2223-1327                     Published Tuesday, July 1, 2014, in Vol. 14, No. 128                      Email us
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Minister seeks probe of years of cultural expenses
By Michael Krumholtz
and the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The minister of culture said Monday that she has asked the Ministerio Público, the national prosecutorial office, to investigate five years of expenses by her ministry.

The minister,  Elizabeth Fonseca, made the announcement at a press conference. She said the programs involved are the Festival de las Artes, Enamorate de tu Ciudad, Colegio de Costa Rica, Festival Internacional de Cine, and the Feria Internacional del Libro.

She added that these investigations stem directly from a request from President Luis Guillermo Solís. Concerns have arisen regarding the increased price of contracts in the past few years.

Over the past six years cultural investments in the country have exceeded 3 billion colons, or $5.5 million, according to the culture ministry. From 2008 to 2010 the ministry only spent 700 million colons, or roughly $1.3 million, on production expenses for these five programs. But since 2011 spending has tripled that number to reach 2.6 billion colons, or $4.7 million. This year alone more than 730 million colons were said to be allocated for cultural events.

Ms. Fonseca said she tried to reach out to the former culture minister, Manuel Obregón, to ask him about the increased budgets, but she said she has not heard back from him.

She added that she was unable to comment on specifics because of the legal investigation.

For Solís, it presents the first investigation of a ministry under his watch. The president commented on his Twitter account that “In favor of transparency, I'm going to continue informing everyone each time that we find irregularities in our institutions.”


Ms. Fonseca
Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud photo
Elizabeth Fonseca announces she wants an investigation of ministry expenses.

Almost immediately, the Partido Acción Ciudadana in the legislature said it would ask Obregón to appear before the Comisión de Ingreso y Gasto Público.

Nidia Jiménez Vásquez, a legislator, said that the money directed toward the Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud appears to have been managed incorrectly and in a questionable way. She also criticized Obregón for not responding to questions from the culture ministry. She is a member of the commission to which Obregón is to be invited.

Acción Ciudadana is the party of the president. Former president Laura Chinchilla of the Partido Liberación Nacional appointed Obregón, a renowned musician. He left office May 8, the same day as the former president.


Central bank helping to cut value of U.S. dollar
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The value of the U.S. dollar has taken a dip, and based on the exchange rate for Tuesday, the dollar is off about 12 colons from its high point last month.

Not all of this is the result of supply and demand. The Banco Central de Costa Rica has decided that public companies that are not banks can no longer trade on the daily Monex market. The bank's board also decided last week that purchases of U.S. dollars for the public sector would no longer be reflected in the exchange rate.

The central bank will handle public sector needs for U.S. dollars from its own reserves, it said in a statement. This includes dollars needed by the Refinadora Costarricense de Petróleo S.A. for the importations it needs to make gasoline and other products. Also included would be the dollar needs of the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad.

The newspaper La Nación said that part of  this decision was an error in an editorial Monday. The newspaper estimated that about 31 percent of the dollars in the Monex market were for public uses.

The central bank made the changes in order to  reduce volatility, it said. Until last week anyone
Banco Central

with a need for dollars could attend the daily Monex auctions to make purchases. As the U.S. Federal Reserve reduces the purchase of bonds to help the economy there, the dollar increased in value about 12 percent since the first of the year.

The dollar still is about 9.5 percent more than it was in early January, based on the price of 548.66 colons required to buy one today.

Many expats receive pensions and other payments in dollars, so they are more aware of the dollar fluctuations than the average Costa Rican. The increase in the value of the dollar has mostly negative effects on the Costa Rican economy. Imports cost more. Motor fuel costs more.  Even the airport exit tax, which is denominated in dollars, costs more colons.

So the central bank actions could be seen as an effort to reduce inflation.


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A.M. Costa Rica's  Second news page
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 1, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 128

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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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This is a week of national celebrations

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Today is the 147th anniversary of the confederation of Canadian provinces, and it is celebrated as Canada Day

Friday, of course, is U.S. Independence Day, and the Community Action Alliance in San Ramón will be marking both days together with a July 4 potluck lunch.

In San José, Canadians opted for quiet celebration instead of the usual picnic. U.S. expats, of course, have the Independence celebration at the Cervercería de Costa Rica picnic grounds west of town July 4.

The San Ramón organization said that its event begins at noon at Los Abuelos and that those who will attend should make a reservation by this email: events@actionalliancecr.com

In San José the American Colony Committee said that each U.S. citizen can bring one Costa Rican friend. The event starts at 9 a.m., and the traditional flag raising by the Marines based at the U.S. Embassy is at 11 a.m.

Admission is $10 or 5,000 colons, the committee said. More information is on the organization's Web page: http://www.americancolonycr.org/

John Kerry issued a Canada Day statement Monday in which he said that the United States and Canada share a long and productive history and a common democratic heritage. Americans are proud to share not just borders, but values with the great nation of Canada.


Cuban police raid home of activist

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Jose Daniel Ferrer García, executive secretary of the Unión Patriótica de Cuba, a civil rights organization protesting the Cuban government, was arrested Saturday night in his house. Cuban police also detained 11 other activists with violent force, according to Yusmila Reina Ferrera of the Unión.

Ferrer's house located in Santiago acts as the organization's headquarters. Police said their goal was to stop provocative actions going on at the house, including music playing from a giant screen in front of the headquarters. Ms. Reina said around 40 officers arrived at the place armed with batons, guns, and spray.

They reportedly broke down the door to the house and then destroyed much of the furniture and belongings while going through the house. Police were also said to have taken four phones, three cameras, a laptop, and the white sheet that was used for the big screen.

Ms. Reina, who was in the house at the time of the raid, is six months pregnant and said police had no consideration for her while asking her to remain calm while they collected all the evidence they could.

Some of the 12 detainees were released hours after being arrested. Many were said to be badly wounded by police. Ferrer remains in custody as Unión members decry this as a violation of their rights.


Press group decries situation in Ecuador

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

The Inter American Press Association Monday deplored the authoritarianism of the Ecuador government, linking it directly to a continuing deterioration in press freedom in the South American country, new evidence of which is the shutdown of the daily print edition of the Quito newspaper Hoy.

At the same time the Inter American Press Association rejected as a clear interventionist stance of President Rafael Correa’s government a bill for a constitutional amendment that seeks to transfer from the organic communication law to the constitution that information be regarded as a public service rather than a right of the people, thus contravening international treaties and documents on freedom of expression.

In its editorial Sunday Hoy, managed by Jaime Mantilla, announced its last daily print edition in order to go ahead with journalistic activities on a digital basis, explaining to its readers that “the communication law’s restrictive regulations and the deepening of some of its rules, limit in a discriminatory manner Ecuadorean investment in news media, (despite the fact that through an ad hoc regulation foreign investment is permitted in them), the permanent boycott of advertising in Hoy, the cancellation of contracts for printing, especially of school texts, and other restrictions on funding our operations, including the initiative to make information a public service, in a global scenario of progressive deterioration in audiences of the print media, oblige us to take the hard decision of suspending the daily print edition of Hoy.”

Elizabeth Ballantine, press association president, declared, “We cannot fail to point out that we have been warning against this law which is dangerous and interventionist regarding press freedom, and intruding in the content of independent and privately-owned media,” cautioning that this was the reason it was widely fought in the country for several years prior to its effect in June 2013.

Ms. Ballantine, director of the Durango Herald, Durango, Colorado, added that the attacks and official indirect intervention regarding independent media demonstrates the deterioration not only in press freedom but also in democratic institutions.

Claudio Paolillo, chairman of the press association's Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, said, “Along with other governments, Rafael Correa’s will go down in history as one of those mainly responsible for that deterioration, both for attacking independent media and for using publicly owned media as its own to attempt and take away the public’s right to seek and disseminate information, as if this were a prerogative of the government.”

“This is no different than what other Fascist governments have done throughout history", added Paolillo, editor of the Montevideo, Uruguay, weekly Búsqueda.

The association officers explained that the controversial public service clause that is sought to be included in the Constitution devolves from what is already established in the organic communication law and which was, among others, one of those on which congressional debate was held up for four years. With this clause the government is seeking to have a new excuse to regulate news media content.

Hoy, a newspaper founded 32 years ago, said that from today onwards it is disseminating its message in its edition on the Internet, HoyDigital, “with the same philosophy of independence, plurality and the other values that inspired its birth.” Hoy will continue to publish a print version but on a weekly rather than daily basis.

In the editorial, Mantilla declared that the digital tool “will also enable Hoy to develop … a journalism without the restrictions imposed by the communication law on print and audiovisual media …, it will be able to regain use of the capacities to investigate and freely analyze - which are the basis of an honest journalism in a democracy.”

An earlier report on the state of press freedom in Ecuador highlighted the fact that in the South American country “there continues to be constant attacks by the government on journalists, media, opposition politicians and some citizens that criticize it.”


Bill Clinton to visit ULatina today

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton is visiting Universidad Latina in San Pedro today as part of the school's 25th anniversary. Clinton will be on hand to tour the facilities at the medical school's new research building that is promoted to be one of the most modern and innovative in Central America.

Clinton is the honorary chancellor for Laureate International Universities, a network that connects 75 academic institutions in 30 countries, including Universidad Latina. Following the tour of the building that measures five stories and 7,085 square meters, Clinton is expected to have a conversation with the university's chancellor.


France and Germany advance in World Cup

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

France and Germany have reached the World Cup football quarterfinals in Brazil.

Algeria put up a valiant effort against heavily favored Germany Monday in Porto Alegre, battling to a scoreless deadlock in regulation. But it took less than two minutes for the Germans to find the net in extra time as Andre Schurrle scored from close range, while heavily guarded, by flicking the ball off the side of his foot.

Mesut Ozil put Germany ahead 2-0 in the 120th minute, and Algeria prevented a shutout with a goal a minute later in stoppage time to make the final, 2-1.

Earlier Monday, France shut out Nigeria with two late goals, 2-0, and will face Germany in the quarterfinals Friday in Rio de Janerio .

Similar to other matches in the knockout stage, the France-Nigeria game in Brasilia was not decided until late. Paul Pogba scored on a header off a corner kick in the 79th minute to break a scoreless deadlock and give France the lead.

In stoppage time action at the end of the regulation 90 minutes, Nigerian Joseph Yobo accidentally knocked the ball into his own goal to give France its second goal in the 2-0 victory.

The last two second round matches will be played Tuesday.  Argentina goes against Switzerland, and the U.S. team takes aim at a quarterfinal berth when it plays Belgium.

Star U.S. forward Jozy Altidore, injured in the team's opening game win over Ghana, has been medically cleared to play Tuesday.  But whether he will see action has not yet been determined.


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A.M. Costa Rica

Third News Page
 
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 1, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 128
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Vice president promises decree over arsenic in Guanacaste water
By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Arsenic contamination continues to plague Costa Rican drinking waters in certain communities. Vice President Ana Helena Chacón Echeverría visited Bagaces this past weekend to meet with community leaders over a plan that would look to put an end to the area's unsafe waters.

The principal reason for Ms. Chacón's visit was to address the situation's urgency by recruiting more aid from institutions like the Caja Costarricense del Seguro Social and the health ministry. Ms. Chacón met with the mayor of Bagaces, José Rojas Madrigal, and said the government must first establish concise goals and solutions to clean up the country's drinking waters.

“Considering previous applications we agree with the municipal council and the other organizations that work on this issue, that we must develop a new emergency decree that will create a clear and strict plan of action,” Ms. Chacón said.

Officials from the Instituto Costarricense de Acueducto y Alcantarillados also participated with the vice president in the tour. They also visited other Guanacaste towns.

Authorities advised community leaders to make special committees
arsenic
A.M. Costa Rica file graphic
Arsenic as seen in the periodic table of the elements.

that could more easily communicate with organizations like Acueducto y Alcantarillados and the Caja to quickly address contamination issues. They said random follow-up meetings will be made to attempt to increase community involvement in these affected areas.


Chinese firm agrees for a new deadline on Ruta 32 widening project
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The China Harbour Engineering Co. has agreed to extend the deadline for Costa Rica's approval of a bond deal until Sept. 15. This is the company that may be tapped to widen Ruta 32 from Limón to Río Frio,

The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes said that a representative of the engineering company called with news of the extension June 20.

The controversial project has last been estimated at $465 million.

The Chinese have given several deadlines in the past in an effort to have the contracts approved by the legislature. The Partido Acción Ciudadana, which now has a strong bloc in the legislature and controls the presidency, has been lukewarm to the idea.

The principal criticism is that the contract is to be written in Chinese
and that Chinese law will prevail. Some have raised questions about the price, too.

The project has not been engineered, so an accurate estimate is not possible. In addition to making the key highway four lanes, the project includes overpasses and expropriation of land. Costa Rica would put up more than $90 million, but some wonder if that is enough.

When the public works minster, Carlos Segnini, appeared before a legislative committee June 12, lawmakers said that the contracts would not reach the floor until October.  The project would be financed by loans from China, too.

China Harbour Engineering Co. and its subsidiary,  China Communications Construccion Co., has been blacklisted by the World Bank due to corruption allegations in The Phillipines, lawmakers noted earlier in the year.

There is strong support in the Limón area for the project.

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 1, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 128
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World Cup excesses lead to arrests after national team's defeat of Greece
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Some Costa Rican fans became a bit too caught up in post-game celebrations Sunday. Police said they detained 30 people throughout the country during drawn-out public celebrations up until 9 p.m. when most began to die down. Transit police caught 27 drivers who tested over the legal limit for blood alcohol levels and doled out 72 tickets.

Juan José Andrade, the Fuerza Pública's general director, said the majority of those detentions occurred in the San José metro area. Police detained subjects on grounds of disorderly conduct, possession of drugs, and domestic violence. They confirmed four men had been wounded during fights that broke out.

Andrade said citizens need to keep their cool and not lose their tempers no matter what the situation is. The Fuerza Pública coordinated with Policía de Tránsito and municipality police forces to monitor the street-side partying that lasted into the night.
Transit police conducted more than 200 blood alcohol tests total, according to the Ministry of Obras Públicas y Transporte. The 27 drivers who tested over the mark of 0.75 grams of alcohol per liter of blood were sent to the Ministerio Público for criminal action.

Mario Calderón, the transit police director, said for those drivers who measure between 0.50 and 0.75, it usually results in a fine of 293,000  colons (about $535) and six points added to their driver's license. Professional drivers must maintain a blood alcohol content below 0.50 and can get fined for anything above 0.20.

One person was killed in Pérez Zeledón after a motorcycle collided with a car.

Calderón said that 23 of those 27 drivers who tested over the legal limit were driving in San José. He added that police will maintain similar patrols for next Saturday's game against Holland.

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

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

   * Discover how to make the right choices about moving here
   * Find out how to live affordably
   * See how other expats live. Meet other expats who have made
          the move.
   * Access the country's affordable health care system
   * Informative two-day seminar given by local experts in their
          relevant fields.
   * Tours led by Christopher Howard, 34-year resident, citizen,
          and the author of "The New Golden Door to Retirement
          and  Living in Costa Rica – the Official Guide to Relocation”
 
Click HERE  to learn all about our Association of Residents (ARCR)  approved tours at www.liveincostarica.com
8362-6/8/14

Anywhere
Anywhere Costa Rica plans custom vacations, and has the most comprehensive travel services in the country including travel guides, resorts and vacation homesCosta Rica tours
and car rentals.  
Call 1-888.456.3212 or 2479-8811 locally.
8278-3/14/14


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

The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is a great place to find quality remembrances of Costa Rica to take home or to decorate your home or office in Costa Rica.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever.  With more than 60 artists on exhibit and fine art in 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we are easy to locate just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport. Visit our Web site at
or contact us by email:
HiddenGarden@TheVanStoneGroup.com.   
Gallery hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tel. 2667-0592 / 8386-6872; U.S. telephone 702-953-7073. International shipping available.
8199-4/6/14

diligence
Click photo for another video

The Relocation/Retirement tour with the
 *HIGHEST SUCCESS RATE
OF RELOCATION*

 (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!
http://www.vimeo.com/5656822

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. lundquistgeorge@gmail.com

8390-10/2/14

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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HERE!

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challet
Chalet for rent located in Monte de la Cruz, Heredia
Surrounded by nature in large property, Two bedrooms, two bathrooms  laundry room, fully furnished, security, electric gate  $500.00 monthly. Phone  2267-6306  bonillaleda@yahoo.com
8396-7/18/14

Palamres


Homes for rent in Palmares, Alajuela
See our Web page: palmarescostarica.us
8375-7/2/14

houe
                                                rental
We are looking for a person with good manners, medical student, exchange program student or a foreigner, to share my house. We offer you: Two bedrooms, breakfast and dinner. You will have Internet and TV cable. We have laundering service and cleaning service. All of this only for $35 per night per person!!. Please call: (+506) 8313-3472 or 6116-3218. Or email: alvaradoleonor@gmail.com Thanks you!!!
8364-6/19/14

apartmetn building
Apartment is on second floor


Apartment for rent

2 bedrooms 2 full baths

Full furniture, AC, security, rooftop swimming pool, 2 parking space, good location: Escazú near district 4. Close to mall, hotels, restaurants and business centers (Grupo Roble). 8336-7762 or email NoushinRavery@yahoo.com.
8363-6/19/14

Tropical Paradise in downtown San José
$485 per month.

The apartments are located in the heart of San Pedro, just a few minutes from the capital, San José. We are close to everything: banks, food, supermarkets, transportation, many language schools, Humans’ Rights Court, United Nations, Oscar Arias Foundations, the Defense
apartments
of Children, the University of Costa Rica, VERITAS, U. Latina and other private universities. We provide a positive friendly and quiet atmosphere which includes gardens, parking, security, laundry/cleaning services, high speed (2 mega bytes) Wireless DSL Internet/active cable T.V. connections 
with 90 channels (TV not included). The apartments include the following: one bedroom, kitchen/dining/living room area, bathroom (with hot shower), refrigerator, coffee maker, toaster, stove top, basic kitchen supplies, basic furnishings and all linens. We also offer 100 percent free, unlimited phone calls to U.S.A., Canada,  and Puerto Rico. 3 MONTH MINIMUM CONTRACT.    Contact us at 506-8818-2004    or  506-8302-1499   villalakshmi@gmail.com  Check our Web site, www.villalakshmi.com, for more info.
8386-6/29/14

Apartments Lemur
Apartment Lemur for rent
San Francisco de Dos Rios, El Bosque, furnished, 2-bedroom, 1-bath apartment, quiet area, free cable TV, WiFi. large patio area, swimming pool, parking, security. Close to San José. $440/month. Retired persons preferred. Call 8375-6838.
Email: jorge.jorgejim@gmail.com.
8393-8/3/14


oranic farm
$800 plus utilities, 2-bedroom, 2-bath house, fully furnished, Internet included, cable TV available. Inside organic farm, safe and secure. In the country but close to town. Santa Barbara de Heredia, Email for more info and pictures. Long term, NO DOGS. organicfarmhouserental@gmail.com
8337-6/14/14

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:  rentnowcr@gmail.com.
8357-5/28/24

Gorgeous views, safe and peaceful, above Alajuela
 4-
bedroom, three-bath house for rent, near Pura Vida Yoga Center. Perfect weather, great views, nice neighbors. Two phone lines. Internet access through Cable Tica. Long-term rental only. $900 plus utilities. Click HERE for more information. Contact noelsusana@yahoo.com
8299-5/1/14

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.
tropical
We are offering homes for every budget and every need.
Please visit our Web page at www.tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or contact us at rentals@tropicalhomesofcostarica.com
or call at (506) 2654-5442.
8267-8/17/14

100 houses

CARIARI AND LINDORA areas, nice garden apartments, furnished or not, ideal for small family, couple/singles. US $1,000 and up. Email  1000houses@ice.co.cr   Tel. 8383-6388.
8241-3/7/14

ALAJUELA – SERENE LIVING
MONTHLY $800 TO $1,200

Villas Casa Loma has everything you are looking for.  Best vistas, climate, value.  Four unique homes in a secure private compound on a ridge near Alajuela overlooking the entire Central Valley.  Two are available fully furnished and equipped, each a complete home accommodating 4 persons in two bedrooms with ensuite baths.  Pool, rancho, mirador, other features.  Ask about part-month rates.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.
9229-3/3/14

Los Arcos gated community 2 bedroom 2 bath apartment $500 monthly. aAso efficiency apartment $300 month. dogfood@carolina.rr.com 8841-1606
8222-2/21/14




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A.M. Costa Rica's
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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 1, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 128
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Cafetales



Peblo Bonito
Washington State University/Nate Crabtree Photography
Sites like Pueblo Bonito in northern New Mexico reached their maximum size in the early A.D. 1100s, just before a major drought began to decrease birth rates throughout the Southwest.

Population bomb blamed
for Southwest U.S. collapse

By the Washington State University news staff

Washington State University researchers have sketched out one of the greatest baby booms in North American history, a centuries-long growth blip among southwestern Native Americans between 500 and 1300 A.D.

It was a time when the early features of civilization — including farming and food storage — had matured to where birth rates likely exceeded the highest in the world today, the researchers write in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

A crash followed, said Tim Kohler, professor of anthropology, offering a warning sign to the modern world about the dangers of overpopulation.

“We can learn lessons from these people,” said Kohler, who coauthored the paper with graduate student Kelsey Reese.

The study looks at the data from thousands of human remains found over the past century at hundreds of sites across the Four Corners region of the Southwest. While many of the remains have been repatriated, the data let Kohler assemble a detailed chronology of the region’s Neolithic demographic transition in which stone tools reflect an agricultural transition from cutting meat to pounding grain.

“It’s the first step towards all the trappings of civilization that we currently see,” said Kohler. Jean-Pierre Bocquet-Appel, a French expert on prehistoric populations and guest editor of the PNAS article, has called the transition one of the fundamental processes of human history.

Maize, which we know as corn, was grown in the region as early as 2000 B.C. At first, populations were slow to respond, probably because of low productivity, said Kohler. But by 400 B.C., he said, the crop provided 80 percent of the region’s calories.

Crude birth rates — the number of newborns per 1,000 people per year — were by then on the rise, mounting steadily until about 500 A.D.

The growth varied across the region. People in the Sonoran Desert and Tonto Basin, in what is today Arizona, were more culturally advanced, with irrigation, ball courts and eventually elevated platform mounds and compounds housing elite families. Yet birth rates were higher among people to the north and east, in the San Juan basin and northern San Juan regions of northwest New Mexico and southwest Colorado.

Kohler said the Sonoran and Tonto people would have difficulty finding new farming opportunities for many children, since corn farming required irrigation. Water from canals may have carried harmful protozoa, bacteria and viruses. But groups to the northeast would have been able to expand maize production into new areas as their populations grew, he said.

Around 900 A.D., populations remained high but birth rates began to fluctuate. The mid-1100s saw one of the largest known droughts in the Southwest. The region likely hit its carrying capacity, with continued population growth and limited resources similar to what Thomas Malthus predicted for the industrial world in 1798.

From the mid-1000s to 1280 — by which time all the farmers had left — conflicts raged across the northern Southwest but birth rates remained high.

“They didn’t slow down — birth rates were expanding right up to the depopulation,” said Kohler. “Why not limit growth? Maybe groups needed to be big to protect their villages and fields.

“It was a trap,” he said. “A Malthusian trap but also a violence trap.”

The northern Southwest had as many as 40,000 people in the mid-1200s, but within 30 years it was empty, leaving a mystery that has consumed several archaeological careers, including Kohler’s. Perhaps the population got too large to feed itself as climates deteriorated. But as people began to leave, it would have been hard to maintain the social unity needed for defense and new infrastructure, said Kohler.

Whatever the reason, he said, the ancient Puebloans point up that, population growth has its consequences.

 
Obama threatens to act
alone on kiddie immigration

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. President Barack Obama has asked Congress for new authority to deport Central American children who are illegally immigrating to the United States by the thousands.

“We have an urgent humanitarian challenge on the border,” the president said Monday, complaining that immigration reforms are languishing in Congress.

“America cannot wait forever for them to act. And that's why today I'm beginning a new effort to fix as much of our immigration system as I can on my own without Congress.”

Speaking from the White House Rose Garden, Obama said the U.S. has the legal and moral obligation to care for the 52,000 unaccompanied children and 39,000 women with children who have crossed into the United States along its southwestern border with Mexico since October.

But he asked Congress for new funding that could total $2 billion for a new aggressive deterrence strategy to carry out the deportations and curb the migration, mostly of immigrants from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

The recent influx has overwhelmed U.S. immigration officials, but under U.S. law the immigrants cannot be immediately sent back to their home countries.  Some of the children may be reunited with parents already living in the United States.

“Children aren’t slipping through, they’re being apprehended,” the president said, describing the phenomenon of youngsters presenting themselves to, rather than eluding, U.S. authorities at the southwestern border.

“Our system … is so unclear that folks don’t know what the rules are,” he added.

Vice President Joe Biden visited Guatemala June 20, discussing immigration policy and root causes of the violence that has sent some youngsters and women to seek refuge in the United States.

Obama said Secretary of State John Kerry would travel to the region this week.  Kerry goes to to Panama for today’s scheduled inauguration of president-elect Juan Carlos Varela. He  also is expected to meet with representatives of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras to discuss resolutions to the crisis.


Corruption tied to unrest
in new Carnegie report


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

When a government is corrupt, and serving only the interests of a privileged few, the populace reacts in protest if it has that opportunity, according to a new report.

Along with civil protest, corruption can also trigger and help to sustain violent insurgency in reaction to its presence. That’s the focus of the new report from the Washington-based Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, facilitated by Carnegie Senior Associate Sarah Chayes.

“If you look at every country where there is an extremist insurgency,” says Ms. Chayes, “if you look at half a dozen or a dozen countries that, in the last four or five years, have undergone revolution or something close to it, almost every single time, the government in question has been, I would say, severely corrupt."

The Carnegie report notes that “Twelve of the fifteen lowest-ranking countries on Transparency International’s 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index are the scene of insurgencies, harbor extremist groups, or pose other grave threats to international security.” The report also states that “corruption combines with other risk factors, such as ethnic, religious, or linguistic rifts in a population, or severe economic disparities, to increase the likelihood of a security challenge.”

A clear example is Syria, and the regime of President Bashar al-Assad. It first came under protest from internal anti-corruption reform elements staging the Syrian chapter of the Arab Spring. Then, when the regime appeared vulnerable, others came in to try to topple Assad by force.

And now, that conflict has spread to Iraq, where, as has been true with Syria, corruption has been endemic, along with political exclusion. The Sunni anger against the Shi’a dominated government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki  created an opportunity for violent groups to spread from Syria to Iraq, most notably the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, which with fellow Sunni jihadis have taken and held a broad swath of territory in both countries.

So what happened when the Islamic State of Iraq was created,” says analyst Tawfik Hamid with the Potomac Institute in Washington, “these other disenfranchised groups from different tribes, for example, and the remnants of Saddam’s supporters with their military experience – what happened is that these forces effectively came together.”

Hamid explains “So now you have fighters ready to die. You have people with a military mind to organize things, and you have a number of people joining up with these fanatical groups. So you have all three elements to create this chaotic situation.”

Kleptocracy is one of the most corrosive forms of corruption: those with power draining their country’s wealth into their own pockets. As the report states, “In a range of countries around the globe, corruption is the system. Governments have been repurposed to serve an objective that has little to do with public administration: the personal enrichment of ruling networks.”

Ukraine under Yanukovych is one of the many examples that Ms. Chayes cites. “We’re talking about governments that have almost restructured themselves so that their main objective isn’t governing people – it’s filling the pockets of this clique that’s running it,” she said. “So, it’s almost like a criminal organization that is masquerading as a government.” The former Ukrainian president and his inner circle are believed to have siphoned more than $50 billion.

The Carnegie study brings up something else that has been known for years, but not often admitted to by those involved – western complicity of endemic corruption. “Western policymakers,” it says, “typically prioritize other considerations, such as immediate security imperatives, the economic or strategic value of maintaining relations with a given government, or return on investment, over corruption concerns.”

The report, in its recommendations, calls on governments to include corruption as part of its assessments of state and regional security risks. It also calls on the U.S. and other western nations to take corruption into account when constructing and promoting bilateral trade and investment. Another call is for more robust transnational financial monitoring – “following the money” from corrupt regimes to its hiding places, and how it is then utilized.  Development and military aid are also noted – the report says there needs to be stronger monitoring of where the money goes and how it is used.

Equally important, according to the report, is the need for robust support for civil society elements in at-risk nations.

Nathaniel Heller, head of the good governance group Global Integrity, sums it up. “We have increasing evidence that corruption is a core driver of instability and insecurity in many countries. Adding to corruption to a climate of high youth unemployment, patronage politics, and unresponsive government is like feeding the yeast of extremism with a nutrient-rich sludge of disillusionment and pent up aggression. Corruption often provides the tipping point for many extremists’ calls to violence.”

 
Facebook facing criticism
for experiment with users


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Social media giant Facebook says it conducted a study that altered some users’ feeds because the company cares about the emotional impact of Facebook.

There has been widespread criticism of the experiment, which was conducted without user knowledge.

For the study, Facebook, along with Cornell University and the University of California at San Francisco, manipulated some users’ feeds – favoring posts that were positive for some users or more negative for others – to see if emotions were contagious online.

Adam Kramer, a Facebook data scientist and co-author of the study, responded to the outcry on his Facebook page.

“The reason we did this research is because we care about the emotional impact of Facebook and the people that use our product,” he wrote. “We felt that it was important to investigate the common worry that seeing friends post positive content leads to people feeling negative or left out. At the same time, we were concerned that exposure to friends' negativity might lead people to avoid visiting Facebook. We didn't clearly state our motivations in the paper.”

According to Kramer, only 1 in 2,500 users, over 689,000 in total, had their feeds manipulated for a period of one week in 2012.

“I can tell you that our goal was never to upset anyone,” he wrote. “I can understand why some people have concerns about it, and my coauthors and I are very sorry for the way the paper described the research and any anxiety it caused. In hindsight, the research benefits of the paper may not have justified all of this anxiety.

Kramer said the study did show that positive stories in a person’s news feed encouraged positivity, while negative stories had the opposite effect.

“People who had positive content experimentally reduced on their Facebook news feed, for one week, used more negative words in their status updates,” said Jeff Hancock, professor of communication at Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and co-director of its Social Media Lab. “When news feed negativity was reduced, the opposite pattern occurred: Significantly more positive words were used in peoples’ status updates.”

The findings, according to Hancock, could extend into the real world.

“Online messages influence our experience of emotions, which may affect a variety of offline behaviors,” Hancock said.

The study has been called psychological manipulation by some.

“The unwitting participants in the Facebook study were told (seemingly by their friends) for a week either that the world was a dark and cheerless place or that it was a saccharine paradise,” wrote University of Maryland law professor James Grimmelmann in a blog post. ”That’s psychological manipulation, even when it’s carried out automatically.”

University of Texas psychologist Tal Yarkoni disagreed.

“It’s not clear what the notion that Facebook users’ experience is being ‘manipulated’ really even means, because the Facebook news feed is, and has always been, a completely contrived environment,” he wrote on a blog post. “I hope that people who are concerned about Facebook ‘manipulating’ user experience in support of research realize that Facebook is constantly manipulating its users’ experience. In fact, by definition, every single change Facebook makes to the site alters the user experience, since there simply isn’t any experience to be had on Facebook that isn’t entirely constructed by Facebook.”

Patricia Wallace, senior director, CTYOnline and information technology at Johns Hopkins University, has a different opinion.

“I don’t think people deeply involved consider it a contrived environment,” she said. “They keep in touch with family and friends. Think of unfriending. It’s not trivial.”


oil palms
Stanford University/ Kimberly Carlson
Researchers are studying the effects on water quality when land is cleared for oil palm plantations in West Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo.

Oil palm production affects
water quality, study says

By the Stanford University news service

Found in thousands of products, from peanut butter and packaged bread to shampoo and shaving cream, palm oil is a booming multibillion-dollar industry. While it isn't always clearly labeled in supermarket staples, the unintended consequences of producing this ubiquitous ingredient have been widely publicized.

The clearing of tropical forests to plant oil palm trees releases massive amounts of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas fueling climate change. Converting diverse forest ecosystems to these single-crop monocultures degrades or destroys wildlife habitat. Oil palm plantations also have been associated with dangerous and abusive conditions for laborers.

Significantly eroded water quality now joins the list of risks associated with oil palm cultivation, according to new work co-authored by researchers from Stanford University and the University of Minnesota, who warn of threats to freshwater streams that millions of people depend on for drinking water, food and livelihoods. The new study in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences contains surprising findings about the intensity and persistence of these impacts, even in areas fully forested with mature oil palm trees.

Land clearing, plantation management (including fertilizer and pesticide application) and processing of oil palm fruits to make crude palm oil can all send sediment, nutrients and other harmful substances into streams that run through plantations. Vegetation removal along stream banks destroys plant life that stream organisms depend on for sustenance and shade.

"Although we previously documented carbon emissions from land use conversion to oil palm, we were stunned by how these oil palm plantations profoundly alter freshwater ecosystems for decades," said study co-author and team leader Lisa M. Curran, a professor of ecological anthropology at Stanford and a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment.

Indonesia produces almost half of the world's palm oil. Home to the world's third-largest tropical forest, the country is also one of the principal emitters of greenhouse gases, due to the rapid conversion of carbon-rich forests and peatlands to other uses.

From 2000 to 2013, Indonesia's land used for oil palm cultivation more than tripled. About 35 percent of Indonesian Borneo's unprotected lowlands may be cleared for oil palm in coming years, according to previous research by Curran and the study's lead author, Kimberly Carlson, a former Stanford graduate student who is now a postdoctoral scholar at the University of Minnesota's Institute on the Environment.

Ms. Curran, Ms. Carlson and their colleagues focused on small streams flowing through oil palm plantations, smallholder agriculture and forests in and around Gunung Palung National Park, a federally protected area that Ms. Curran was instrumental in establishing in 1990. They found that water temperatures in streams draining recently cleared plantations were almost 4 degrees Celsius (more than 7 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than forest streams. Sediment concentrations were up to 550 times greater. They also recorded a spike in stream metabolism – the rate at which a stream consumes oxygen and an important measure of a stream's health – during a drought.

The impact of these land use changes on fisheries, coastal zones and coral reefs – potentially many miles downstream – remains unclear because this study is one of the first to examine the oil palm's effects on freshwater ecosystems.
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Great climate
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Visit our Web Site:
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English calls: (Cristian Arce) Phone: 
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Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
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Grecia 794
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Real estate for sale (paid category)


Esterillos

Beach Front Home - Central Pacific Coast
Pristine condition, recently renovated. The best surfing and boogie boarding in the country. The most magnificent ocean and sunset view. New 20-year, fully registered concession on one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. Easy access from San José (1 hour 25 minutes) located between Jacó and Manuel Antonio, in Esterillos Oeste.  2 or 3 bedrooms. Center room can be living room. House with 2 1/2 baths. Separated rancho with kitchen and large entertainment patio. Landscaped garden with no water shortage. Has both municipal and well water with automatic watering system. Direct access to the beach as no road is in front of property. Protected land on one side of the property for additional privacy.  Alarm system and complete shutters for security while away. Lot approximately 1,725 square meters, Asking price: $385.000.  Contact to Paul at local phone 506- 2637-8858  Cell phone 506- 8823-8550 .  US Mobile 908-400-9772  Emails: edumace64@yahoo.es  and pdvartanian@aol.com.
8413-8/28/14

Castillo
Twice the Security & Prestige for Half the Cost

The only private guarded development in El Castillo
• 50% off for limited time only   • $26/square meter
• Neighbors are $80/square meter  • Incredible view
Clubhouse, pool, equestrian, country club
Only 2 remaining
Secure a spot in a million dollar neighborhood for under $100k
 Free architecture services
•  Full commission paid to brokers   • Financing available
Email or call the 24-hour recorded message for full info
mail@davidcollier.net   CR: 4000-1983 (English/Español)
USA: 619-800-8550 (English only)
8382-7/5/14

Tiliran property
Turnkey commercial/apartment building for sale in San Luis, Tilaran, Guanacaste. In a corporation. 100 percent occupancy and all permits in place. Great opportunity to gain investor status residency. New construction - 2012. Consists of three studio apartments upstairs with lake view and 4 storefronts on ground level, including laundry service, soda, consignment store. Comes with purchase or start your own business while you live in one of the apartments. $308,000. Please email tierrasmorenaslou@yahoo.com
8257-8/17/

organic
Stunning organic ocean view home site in San Ramón
2.93 acres, only $60,000

Gorgeous homesite on organic land available for quick sale! Only 10 minutes to downtown San Ramón and within a terrific private community. Close to town but away from it all! Features amazing views of the ocean, great sunsets every night and privacy. Multiple building spots. Comparable lots in the area are selling for $75,000 to over $100,000! At 11,864 square meters, or $5 per square meter, this is a great investment too! This lot is priced to move! Looking for a quick sale, so no tire kickers please! See Web site for additional information and photos. or email bizcr@hotmail.com
Tel: CR (506) 8350-7647
8369-6/26/14

Ad three graphics
Tropical lots located walking distance to a beautiful white sandy beach
Only $49,999 with interest-free financing
These lots are located in a gated, private community with low HOA dues and offer amenities including a pool & rancho.  It is located close to Playa Conchal and Pirates beaches.  And only 20 minutes to the resort town of Tamarindo and an hour from Liberia International airport. Reserve your lot with only a $1,500 deposit.  We are offering Interest-free financing for 5 years for a limited time only. Contact: Christian  info@puntaplayavistas.com 
U.S. (732) 962-6525 or CR (506) 8349-2025    www.puntaplayavistas.com
8372-8/23/14

ad two grpahic
For Sale: Fully Furnished OCEAN VIEW CONDOMINIUM
Reduced $199,999
Gorgeous 2-bedroom, 2-bath condo with private terrace offering spectacular ocean views and built energy green. 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 beach. Only 20 minutes to the resort town Tamarindo and an hour from Liberia airport.  Luxury finishings: Pella double pane windows, AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom cabinets. Contact www.puntaplayavistas.com or email info@puntaplayavistas.com 
U.S. (732) 962-6525 or CR (506) 8349-2025
8271-8/23/14

Ad one grpahics
For Sale by Owner: Playa Conchal ocean view home reduced $339,999

Casa de Eden is  2,600 square feet with 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath, outdoor shower, private outdoor terrace and pool located only minutes from Playa Conchal.  The home is in a private, secure, gated community surrounded by nature and close to the resort town of Tamarindo, only an hour from Liberia airport.  The home is being offered fully furnished with: AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire Professional series stainless steel appliances, granite kitchen countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom wood cabinetry, internet, cable. 
Contact desmondproperties@gmail.com  U.S. (732) 984-7549
or CR (506) 8349-2025.
8370-8/3/14

Belen home
Comfortable in Costa Rica
Asuncion de Belen. Home in exclusive Residencial La Jolla.  Gated community with controlled access,  security 24/7. Resort swimming pool and gym. Spacious and elegant finishes, private jacuzzi and social areas. 3 bedrooms. 2.5 baths.  Private gardens. Conveniently located close to airport, shopping, bilingual schools, Intel and Duty Free Zones. 322m2 on 249m2 corner lot. Lease with purchase option  $3,400/ $449,000 USD. Contact owner at 8309-2000 for details or email rafa@rafacr.com.
9368-6/4/14

Large estate on island with sea view !!!
Located on the Big Island and five minutes from the center of Golfito on boat.  The large land has three hills with forest in which there are many trees and animals such as parrots, parakeets and monkeys.!!   It has a beautiful view
island one
of downtown Golfito , mountains and sea. It has three entry beach options. Your own beach,  large land with fruit trees, livestock grazing.Mangrove front with lots of fish, snapper, etc. Also access to your own part of sea with full of  seafood: pianguas, cambutes, chuchecas, clams, etc. .  Natural beauty is a paradise to live, walking, diving, fishing, horse riding, climbing to the mountains, swimming in the creek or the sea, exploring
the land, animals and trees, etc.  Your paradise is here for you, your family or develop your own rain forest country club. This is  the place of your dreams !  The full land measures 119,284 m2. All legal papers and blueprints are ready to get a new owner.   Property has its own water and  ready to instal solar panel or electric  power plant.     It is Isla Grande - Segura, diagonal to grazing
 Puntarenitas Beach in Golfito for sale at $1.500.000 U.S. Further information contact : Raquel or Maria Ester at  rakell.leon6@gmail.com, Local phone numbers: +506 8690-2325   or  +506  8673-0112.
8361-8/15/14

Casa Fiesta
Caribbean Beachfront Home and Apartment  Puerto Viejo
 Right on the Beach!
Ranch style home with detached garage and apartment Air-conditioned home sleeps 4, apartment sleeps 2 ,  3 baths, hot water showers  Fenced-in property with pool, screened in patio  Turnkey....Everything is included with the sale!   Washer/dryer, furniture, appliances, tools, household items and linens, bicycles, and even a vehicle! Great income potential also  259,000 US Please visit our Web site for many more photos go to: http://www.casafiestacostarica.com  Email inquires to:   suez2cats@hotmail.com
8358-8/8/14

Dragon montage
New amazing, modern, eco-friendly three-bedroom, three-bath executive modern home perched on your own small mountain.  270-degree ocean view with unbelievable teak-look concrete deck, to the RED 48-foot fiberglass infinity lap pool. Separate covered deck with pool table. Guest house with kitchen, Jacuzzi, outdoor shower. Exquisite entryway of 20-foot rock wall and electric gate, with video feed. Large work garage separated from house. Guardhouse. Hidden metal shutters to secure the property for weeks. Private registered well. Inside/outside kitchen. Propane fire pits. Several water features including a waterfall and a water bubble wall. Property can be purchased stand-alone with the house at $550K, or the whole mountain for further development at $950K.  Contact drako13@me.com
8344-5/23/14

Selva Rio
SELVA RIO ESTATES (SRE) www.selvarioestates.com is a 10-lot  development with lots starting at $65,000US. You know what they say "Location, Location, Location." Well SRE is  located only 10 kms. from Atenas (best climate in the entire world!),  only 3 kms. from Highway 27 access, only 3 kms. from grocery stores and restaurants, only 35 kms. (30 min) from SJO airport, only 50 kms. from  Pacific Ocean, only 42 kms. from Escazu, 0  kms. from gorgeous country living with nature!  Contact the developer at selvarioestates@hotmail.com or call 8704-6106. We can help you build your dream home now!
8341-6/22/14

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

2, 900 sq feet under roof, 1,250 sq feet inside walls, 2 bedroom, 2 ½ baths, laundry room, three separate patio areas, covered carport, shade trees, in upscale, secure project.  This project has river with protected areas & walkways. It is only 10 minutes on all paved roads to Santiago de Puriscal, 45 minutes to La Plaza Mall/Hospital CIMA and SJO airport, and 1 ½ hours to Pacific Beaches. It has recently upgraded public water supply and dependable ICE electric and high-speed internet.
Please come visit our projects and meet four new homeowners who have recently moved into their new “live in the view” homes to verify how happy they are and that they all came in under budget. CONTACT: George Lundquist www.costaricaretireonss.com  Home phone: 2417-1041 Cell phone: 8888 4543 Skype glundquist.
To see more Photos of this house, click HERE!
8310-7/1/14

Beautiful fully renovated house in Bello Horizonte, Escazu, 446 sq. meters. Four bedrooms; four baths. Price includes all furniture and fixtures - ready to move in! Light, bright and airy....$499,500 USD. Telephone 2288.6451. More details HERE!
8309-6/29/14

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 its spacious, open feeling with a natural stone fireplace and imported Spanish tile floors.  $365,000.00 or rent for $900 per month including WIFI and PLUS utilities.  Long term rentals only please.  Property: 22,000 m2 or 5.5 acres. Construction: 4,500 sq. ft. including porches and garage.  3 bedrooms/ 2 baths.  Fully furnished   Automatic entry gate.   Custom exotic wood cabinets   High end stainless steel appliances   Granite counter tops  Slide show at   
 www.picturetrail.com/sfx/album/view/24055899   
For more information contact:  deeday214@gmail.com
8305-6/26/14

Five bedrooms
Puntarenas City, Puntarenas
Beach home central Pacific Ocean
Five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths plus guest house
Features include out door BBQ, swimming pool, plus on the beach.  The home is completely furnished including all linens, kitchen cook ware, pots, pans, all dishes and much much more. Each room is individually air conditioned.  Office with all connections for WiFi,  Hot water in bathrooms, kitchen and laundry room.  Fully furnished. Includes all linens, TV’s, refrigerator/freezer, dish washer, microwave, electric stove/oven, washer & dryer and many “as seen on TV” appliances   Will consider trade for U.S. Property.  Asking  $250,000. 
Call Gary 8784-2945  English only, or email  combrokers@aol.com
8259-8/25/14

Los Reyes home
House for sale in La Guacima, Alajuela
Located on 9th tee of Los Reyes Country Club. Club offers golf, tennis (6 courts), swimming pool, gym and restaurant. Easy access to schools, shopping, hospitals & Caldera highway. One hour to Pacific beaches. House price: US $450,000.00. Contact Bill, Phone 506 -8878-9221  Email: losreyes191@gmail.com Click on the link below for photos and additional details:
https://plus.google.com/photos/105244969603261154850/
8240-8/6/14

NOW REDUCED TO $595,000
ALAJUELA – PRIVATE COMPOUND OF 4 HOMES - $850,000 TURNKEY
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 gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:
8230-3/13/14

St. Michael
Ocean View estates inside a gated community from $5.94 M2.  Properties start at 39K. NO HOA FEES.  Community salt water modern waterfall swimming pools, organic vegetable gardens, exotic flower gardens, food forest, mature orchards, fresh fish from aquaponics, stables, community center, and much more.  Each lot comes with an edible landscaping including pineapples, plantains, papayas, guanabanas, bananas, and more.  Most lots already have mature mango, lemon, orange, or caimito trees.  This is the most secure community in CR with multiple sources of water, electric, and high speed internet.      www.saintmichaelscostarica.com
8215-7/14/14

Real estate services
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Business for sale or lease (paid category)
Gingerbread Boutique Hotel and Fine Restaurant For Sale
botique hotel
A very  famous, highly regarded unique lake view themed boutique hotel consisting of three air conditioned suites with satellite TV and high speed Internet, two themed cottages with garden showers, one large super suite with kitchen and garden shower, managers apartment, restaurant rated one of the best restaurants in Costa Rica {see reviews} and the premier real estate office at Lake Arenal,which puts all its clients in to the hotel, plus room for additional lake view rooms and a pool, all less than a mile from Nuevo Arenal and the public park on the lake.  Go to the Web site for photos and complete information  at  www.gingerbreadarenal.com  This is the finest boutique hotel in Costa Rica in one of the fastest growing areas of all of Central America.  Sale opportunity $750,000.   Contact to :
Terry Moran, Owner Email: moranrealestate@gmail.com 
Office phone: 506 2694-0088  Cell phone: 506 8880-8888 
USA # rings in Costa Rica:  305 307-0088
8263-8/20/14

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: manager@crbusiness.biz.

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 1, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 128
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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
tweets
Washington University School of Medicine graphic
This is a typical marijuana tweet.

Twitter sends pro-pot flood, study says

By the Washington University School of Medicine newsroom

Hundreds of thousands of American youth are following marijuana-related Twitter accounts and getting pro-pot messages several times each day, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found.

The tweets are cause for concern, they said, because young people are thought to be especially responsive to social media influences. In addition, patterns of drug use tend to be established in a person’s late teens and early 20s.

In a study published online in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, the Washington University team analyzed messages tweeted from May 1 through Dec. 31, 2013, by a Twitter account called Weed Tweets@stillblazintho. Among pro-marijuana accounts, this one was selected because it has the most Twitter followers — about 1 million. During the eight-month study period, the account posted an average of 11 tweets per day.

“As people are becoming more accepting of marijuana use and two states have legalized the drug for recreational use, it is important to remember that it remains a dangerous drug of abuse,” said principal investigator Patricia A. Cavazos-Rehg. “I’ve been studying what is influencing attitudes to change dramatically and where people may be getting messages about marijuana that are leading them to believe the drug is not hazardous.”

Although 19 states now allow marijuana use for medical purposes, much of the evidence for its effectiveness remains anecdotal. Even as Americans are relaxing their attitudes about marijuana, in 2011 marijuana contributed to more than 455,000 emergency room visits in the United States, federal research shows. Some 13 percent of those patients were ages 12 to 17.

A majority of Americans favor legalizing recreational use of the drug, and 60 percent of high school seniors report they don’t believe regular marijuana use is harmful. A recent report from the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime said that more Americans are using cannabis as their perception of the health risk declines. The report stated that for youth and young adults, “more permissive cannabis regulations correlate with decreases in the perceived risk of use.”

Ms. Cavazos-Rehg said Twitter also is influencing young people’s attitudes about the drug. Studying Weed Tweets, the team counted 2,285 tweets during the eight-month study. Of those, 82 percent were positive about the drug, 18 percent were either neutral or did not focus on marijuana, and 0.3 percent expressed negative attitudes about it.





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