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Domestic costs of overseas medical care is a concern
 By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

First World governments and academics are beginning to look at the domestic cost of medical tourism.

The National Health Service in the United Kingdom estimates that botched medical procedures overseas cost it every year about 8 million pounds, about $12.6 million, according to a recent University of York study.

Neil Lunt, the editor of a new handbook on the topic, said “If someone decides to go oversees for cosmetic work, that’s an individual thing they do.  But if when they come back there’s work that needs to be done, that typically gets picked up by the NHS," meaning the British national health system.

There have been a few reports from the United States from individuals who said they received bad treatment in Costa Rica. These individuals have had to pay themselves to fix what they considered the flaws.

Globally five million people will seek medical treatment abroad, the University of York estimated.

The university is where academics put together the handbook that looks at the implications for patients and health systems around the world.

Patients who travel abroad for medical treatment risk and return with complications or infections that require costly treatment is one of the issues highlighted in the new handbook, said the university.

This growth in medical tourism has been boosted by cheaper air travel and by the Internet, which allows medical providers from one country to market themselves to patients in another, the handbook authors said, according to the university.

In the United States more and more medical insurance firms are encouraging overseas travel to save money. Canada has a national medical program, too, but citizens from there go overseas or to the United States to avoid long waits. Costa Ricans go overseas sometimes, too, for complex medical treatment, mainly in the United States. México has had centers for years to cater to U.S. citizens in search of alternative treatments.

A proposal in the Costa Rica legislature is designed to formalize the medical tourism industry here and to promote it outside the country. However, there is no provision in the bill to protect foreigners who may receive substandard treatment.

Many who come are unaware that the Costa Rican legal framework probably will not provide compensation for malpractice or less than standard treatment.

Researchers from York University's Department of Social Policy and Social Work and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine brought together the global community of researchers and writers to produce the "Handbook on Medical Tourism and Patient Mobility." It is published by Edward Elgar.

The university said that the handbook explores topics such as risk, law and ethics, patient experience and treatment outcomes for cosmetic, transplantation, dental, fertility and weight loss surgeries.

Lunt said that the topic of medical tourism was one of growing academic interest. An aspect of the proposal in the Costa Rican legislature is a system to obtain statistics on foreign medical tourists. That is something that is not available now because no one keeps track of who is just a tourist and who is coming to Costa Rica for medical treatment.

Evangelical politician is involved in sex scandal
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The case was exactly what the television producers needed on a slow news night.

A former deputy affiliated with an evangelical Christian political party is accused of attempting to molest a woman at a Pavas motel.

The ex-deputy is Justo Orozco of Renovación Costarricense. He has alienated many due to his stand on social issues. As head of the legislature's human rights committee, he impeded legislation of benefit to gays and lesbians until 2014.

According to the Fuerza Pública, which detained the man about 5 p.m. Tuesday, this is what is alleged:

A woman who still is unidentified came from Naranjo in search of a job interview with the political party. She was seeking to work in her own area.

Orozco presented her to political colleagues and then conducted a job interview.

Later he took her to a motel and in the parking area of a room in this location began to fondle her and then tried to close to steel gate in order to keep the woman inside.

The woman left running and arrived quickly at a police station nearby.

Police detained Orozco as he was leaving the area in his vehicle, they said. He was taken into custody and in the midsts of a media circus was brought to the courts in San José where he was presented to  flagrancy officials.

He was taped climbing the steps of the courts building with a piece of fabric hiding his face. But he did declare his innocence to the microphones of news people.

A short time later, the woman victim 
Ministerio de Segruidad Pública photo
Handcufffed Justo Orozco is processed.

arrived,  also with her face covered by cloth. She spoke abruptly and then broke into tears as news people sought information.

All this took place in time for the 6 p.m. television news.

Both were to be interviewed by prosecutors. A bit more than an hour after the arrest, the Ministerio de Seguridad Pública issued a summary of the case along with photos.

Motels in Costa Rica are different than those elsewhere. They almost exclusively are used for sexual encounters.

The social networks were buzzing with comments that supported and denigrated Orozco. In addition to a fondling charge, he is facing the allegation that he kept the woman against her will.

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A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.

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Del Rey

Bridge out
Consejo Nacional de Vialidad photo               
      Sign says that this bridge over the Río Guayabo was in bad shape
      even before the rain. Now it is closed.

President signs flood disaster decree

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The government formalized its emergency decree Tuesday and designated the province of Limón and the cantons of Turrialba and Sarapiquí as locations where aid would be expended.

The decree by President Luis Guillermo Solís includes all the cantons of the province of Limón.

The decree allows more flexibility in distributing aid money. The action had been promised since Sunday.

The government said Tuesday that some 150 rivers still were running strong as a result of a week of rain.

The emergency is not over.

The  Instituto Meteorológico Nacional said Tuesday night that a high pressure area was creating strong winds in the country and that up to an inch of rain had fallen in the northern zone and on the Caribbean coast.

The weather institute predicted double that amount of rain into the early morning hours.

Heavy rains and winds caused power outages Monday night on the Nicoya Peninsula and in the area served by the Parrita substation in the central Pacific, said the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad. Some 50 technicians were working to restore power Tuesday afternoon, the firm said. The Nicoya substation was the one at  Santa Rita, Nandayure.

The Refinadora Costarricense de Petróleo said that some pipelines were damaged by the ríos  Lajas and Torito in Talamanca.

The national road agency said Tuesday morning that Ruta 32 has been reopened after landslide debris was cleared. There still is a problem with Ruta 4 that joins with Ruta 32 at Río Frio. A section of bridge collapsed. In all some 11 bridges were damaged by the week of rain.

The damage to the petroleum pipelines also could be considered bridge problems because the pipes cross the rivers on narrow spans.

Solís was supposed to inspect the Ruta 32 slide site at Kilometer 29 early today and then take a plane three times during the day to fly over affected areas in the northern part of the country. He plans to do the same in the southern part of the country Thursday, Casa Presidencial said.

Obama to announce Cuban embassy deal

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A senior U.S. official says the United States and Cuba have reached agreement to reopen embassies in each other's capitals for the first time in more than 50 years.

The White House says President Barack Obama plans to make a statement on Cuba today from the Rose Garden, while Secretary of State John Kerry will speak in Vienna, where he is taking part in nuclear talks with Iran. 

Cuba's foreign ministry says the chief of the U.S. interests section in Havana, Jeffrey DeLaurentis, will deliver a note Wednesday from Obama on reopening embassies.

Kerry is likely to travel to Havana during the week of July for a flag-raising ceremony to reopen the American embassy. The White House will disclose the exact timing, a U.S. official said.

Obama made history in December when he said he wanted to end the long-standing U.S. trade embargo against Cuba with an eye on reestablishing diplomatic ties.

Delegations from both sides have been holding talks in Washington and Havana ever since.

In one significant sign of the diplomatic thaw, Cuba recently came off the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism. Obama announced on April 14 that he would delete Cuba from the list, initiating a 45-day review period that expired on May 29.

Obama said isolating Cuba through trade and travel embargoes has achieved nothing and did not bring about a democratic and prosperous country. He said it is time for a new approach.

But opponents of diplomatic relations with Cuba, including many refugees from the island, say it would be rewarding the Castro government.

Both countries can now upgrade their so-called interests sections in Havana and Washington into full-blown embassies, with ambassadors to be appointed later. The State Department must give Congress a 15-day notice before opening an embassy.

Even after embassies are opened, the U.S. and Cuban governments still face a number of sensitive issues, including U.S. demands for more human rights for Cubans.

Restoration of relations would be the latest phase in a normalization process, which is expected to move slowly because of lingering problems over issues such as Cuba's human rights record. A U.S. embargo will remain in place, and only Congress can lift it.

Cuba once thrived on U.S. tourism and investment and was for a long time a playground for the rich with numerous hotels, casinos and beachfront resorts.

U.S. women move to World Cup final

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. women's soccer team has advanced to the championship game of the World Cup tournament in Canada for the second straight time, beating Germany in a semifinal match Tuesday, 2-0.

The second-seeded Americans upended the top-seeded Germans at Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Quebec, on second-half goals by midfielder Carli Lloyd and defender Kelley O'Hara.

Ms. Lloyd scored on a penalty kick in the 69th minute after the referee ruled that Germany's Annike Krahn had obstructed striker Alex Morgan.  Replays showed the penalty took place just outside the box.

In the 85th minute, Ms. O’Hara scored from close range past German goalie Nadine Angerer after taking a perfect centering pass from Ms. Lloyd.

Germany had an opportunity to score first in the second half, but Celia Sasic missed a penalty kick in the 59th minute, hooking the ball to her left just outside the post.

The United States now heads to the championship game in Vancouver on Sunday seeking its third World Cup title, with previous wins in 1991 and 1999.

The U.S. team will play the winner of the other semifinal game pitting defending champion and fourth-seeded Japan against sixth-seeded England in Edmonton, Alberta, on Wednesday.

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From A.M. Costa Rica

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From our retirement guide

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In the Spanish-language press

Today, June 30

Waterspout seen in Playa Ballena

La Prensa Libre: It caught the attention of the locals, scaring more than one, but these are natural formations that are considered usual in our shores, as oceanographer Omar Lizano said

Pineapple exports going down

La República: Pineapple exports fell for the first time since 2009, when comparing the first five months of each year.

In 13 raids police dismantle smuggling ring

CR Hoy: A prosecutor estimated the confiscated merchandise is worth around $4.5 million total.

Bishop calls for defense of the family

Diario Extra: The bishopp of Tilarán exhorted the faithful to defend the family in a  sermon Monday at the cathedral in San José.  President Luis Guillermo Solis attended.

Best way to do some shopping

El Financiero: Order, cleanliness and spaciousness are three main aspects to consider when planing on visiting and shopping around in Costa Rican establishments.

Compiled by Sylvia Quesada Hidalgo

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Third News Page

San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, July 1, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 128
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U.N. agency urges advertising restrictions on unhealthy food for kids
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The United Nations Children's Fund urged a blackout or at least limits on publicity of what it called unhealthy foods directed at children.

The ban on advertising should extend to all media, including the Internet, the agency said. It said children lack the critical senses to evaluation publicity.

The recommendations are contained in a report released Tuesday in San José. The report covers research done in Costa Rica, Argentine and México. The U.N. agency says that unhealthy food causes children to be overweight.

Unhealthy foods were defined as those that contain sugar, salt and fats.

The U.N. agency worked with the  Instituto de Nutrición de Centro América y Panamá. Four schools were visited in each country and interviews were done with executives of food marketing firms, school officials, parents and others.

What the research showed was predictable. There are many advertising pitches on all media directed to children. There are a number of methods, including the use of sports figures and fantasy figures.

The study also came out against advertising directed to parents.

Costa Rica has had a rule since 2012 that vendors inside schools cannot offer what the U.N. agency sees as unhealthy foods. But some did, according to the study.

The report also called for more studies.

The report stopped short of connecting the advertising and the foods sold with obesity. It assumed that was the case. It
The text says 'The promotion and publicity increases the consumption of unhealthy foods that  jeopardizes the fundamental right to grow and develop in a healthy manner.'

noted  that in Costa Rica children between 6 and 11 had 29.1 percent fat in their bodies, according to an unrelated survey. The report also urged food producers to adopt their own rules about advertising and children.

The various ministries of education were urged to keep advertising out of the schools and restrict the type of food that is available for children.

The report also urged the public at large to discuss the topic and campaign for the benefit of children.

The survey showed a lot of promotion exists on the social networks, including Facebook, Twitter and various computer applications.

New U.S. ambassador demonstrates that he does speak Spanish
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The new U.S. ambassador demonstrated his command of Spanish Tuesday when he met with some reporters in what the embassy called a formal introduction.

The ambassador is S. Fitzgerald Haney, and he apologized for lacking practice in Spanish at the beginning of his talk.  The apology seemed unnecessary as Haney handled a series of questions for mostly Costa Rican reporters with only a few lapses when he reverted to English words.

The diplomat also showed that he was well briefed because he
responded with long-time U.S. positions on drugs, foreign investment, the environment and gay marriage.
Haney also pointed out that he has been an international business man. He also speaks Hebrew and Portuguese.

The embassy reported that Haney visited the Museo Nacional to get a grip on Costa Rican history.

One place he will not be visiting is the July 4 picnic Saturday at the Cervercería Costa Rica picnic grounds.

Haney and his rabbi wife, Andrea, are Conservative Jews who observe shabbat, keeping holy the seventh day of the week, an embassy spokesperson said.

Haney spent a year awaiting confirmation by the U.S. Senate

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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Entire pygmy sloth species confined to one island in Caribbean
By the  Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
news staff

A Smithsonian scientist found that pygmy sloths wander inland in addition to inhabiting the mangrove fringes of their island refuge. He realized that the population size of the pygmy sloth was underestimated. A new, higher estimate for the number of sloths on Panama’s Escudo de Veraguas Island points to how little is known about the species, and it underscores the need to conserve the sloths’ isolated home, he said.

Found only on a tiny island in the southern Caribbean, the threatened population of the pygmy three-toed sloth (Bradypus pygmaeus) does not have much room to grow. Fortunately, the world’s smallest sloth species is less fussy about habitat than initially thought. Once believed to live only in the mangroves that edge Panama’s Escudo de Veraguas Island, a new paper in the Journal of Mammalogy shows that the sloths also inhabit the island’s forested interior. This suggests that an estimate of fewer than 500 individuals based on the most recent census of pygmy sloths, 79 individuals counted in the mangroves, may have fallen considerably short.

Bryson Voirin, a former fellow at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, placed radio collars on 10 sloths in mangroves and tracked their unhurried movements at three- to six-month intervals over three years. Only three sloths remained entirely within the mangroves. Five moved past the mangrove edge into other tree species, and four moved more than 200 meters inland, quite far for a sloth. Coupled with population density estimates and extrapolated across the island’s 430 hectares, Voirin reached a high-end estimate of almost 3,200 individuals, according to the report.

“The actual population size is most likely somewhere between these two, perhaps 500 to 1,500 individuals,” said Voirin, a researcher at Germany’s Max Planck Institute of Ornithology. “In any case, this is extremely small number for an entire species.”

Voirin warned against too much optimism for the pygmy sloth’s critically endangered status. Escudo de Veraguas is only nominally protected, and developers have the island in their crosshairs. One proposal calls for turning the place into a semi-autonomous tax haven boasting a marina, airstrip, casino and hotel.

“Declaring the island a wildlife refuge or national park would protect not only the pygmy sloths, but also the other unique species found on the island,” said Voirin. Escudo de Veraguas is also home to an endemic hummingbird species and an endemic bat species. Its beaches are important for
nesting sea turtles, and its flora remains understudied. Currently, the island falls under the jurisdiction of the
 Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute photo
An example of the isalnd's pygmy sloth

indigenous territory of Ngäbe-Buglé Comarca, and it is also threatened by unregulated timber harvesting.

The pygmy sloth was first described in 2001 by researchers at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History as separate from its mainland sister species, B. variegatus. It is about 40 percent lighter in body mass and 15 percent shorter in overall body length. Rising seas isolated Escudo de Veraguas about 9,000 years ago, and the sloth appears to have followed the process of insular dwarfism, by decreasing in size over time. Voirin and colleagues also found that because there are no sloth predators on the island the pygmy sloth exhibits different sleep-and-wake patterns from its mainland relative.

Future pygmy sloth research will involve deeper analysis of the species’ genetics and the diverse microbial community that lives on its fur. Voirin also hopes to better understand the sloth’s diet and population trends.

“Further scientific research on the pygmy three-toed sloth is much needed, and we hope we will continue to yield new insights into its life history,” he said. “Such research will not only help us to better understand the species, but will enable us to ensure that it persists into the future.”

Vacation, travel and hospitality

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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.


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Adventures in Costa Rica are awaiting you.
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Mar de
Hotel Mar de Luz
Designed for families to provide peaceful & ecologically balanced environment, where all can enjoy healthy & pollution free stay. Built in harmony with nature & were used to reflect a subtropical atmosphere. Main source of energy is sunlight, converted by solar panels on the roofs. High quality services at a reasonable cost allowing guests to enjoy dream holiday at an attractive rate. Come and enjoy a great vacation. Comfortable accommodation, personalized services and quality amenities. Cosy rooms, breakfast, pools, architectural design, surrounded by lush vegetation in beautiful tropical gardens with coconut, almond, etc. Address : Jacó  beach, next to Subway Restaurant, Avenida Pastor Díaz, Costa Rica. Local phone (506) 2643-3000. Email:  Web page:

                        Playa Bejuco
Hotel Boutique Playa Bejuco
Cozy, opened in 2007 just 90 minutes from the capital, with good access. Go shopping or enjoy the evening entertainment. Hosting services, friendly, quality and comfortable, discreet under the concept of 100 percent family hotel, the reason we do not allow or endorse any activity related to prostitution or drugs. Natural beauty, recommended for tourists for a relaxing holiday. Nearby is Manuel Antonio National Park. Tours, canopy, fishing, rainforest, horseback riding, ATV, rafting, etc. 20 deluxe rooms equipped with 3 for disabled. All with air conditioning, cable TV, telephone, refrigerator, private bathroom, hot water, free wireless Internet, etc. Maximum 5 people. Main restaurant, pools (adults & children), jacuzzi, private parking, 24 hours security, pool bar, playground equipped. At front desk currency conversions, confirm your flight or coordinate tours. Address : Playa Bejuco, Esterillos, Costa Rica. Local phone (506) : 2779-2000. Email:   Web page

experience Costa Rica
Costa Rica Travel In Paradise Group Tours

Looking for easy booking process for a smooth Costa Rica trip?   We customize wonderful trips to Costa Rica.  We offer you our wealth of knowledge for a great experience . . . a trip of a lifetime!!!

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CR Local Phone: 011-506 -2274-3231

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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
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   * Tours led by Christopher Howard, 34-year resident, citizen,
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Largest art gallery in Guanacaste
Drop in to see some of Costa Rica's finest art
at the largest gallery in Guanacaste.

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

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
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Real estate wanted

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

Real estate for rent (paid category)

Apartment for Rent $1,575
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

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.
apartment view
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. 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:   Call us: 506-2221-7161. 

Beautiful cottage in San Rafael, Heredia

 Surrounded by nature.
One or two bedrooms, 1 or 1.5 bathrooms. Bus line service, security. Pets allowed. $450 and $500 monthly. Phone: (506) 7019-9457,  8739-0638, 8993-5801. Or

Heredia cottage

house for rent
$800 plus electric
Two-bedrooms, two-bath house, fully furnished, INCLUDES internet, WiFi, cable TV, water bill. Inside private property, safe and secure. In the country but close to town. Santa Bárbara de Heredia. Email for more info and pictures. Long term. NO DOGS.

Ever thought about moving to Costa Rica?
Rent my beautiful little home for a year or two and see if you like it. Located in the hills of San Isidro de Heredia. Cool weather, peaceful
living room
and quiet. Fully furnished to function with style, $950  a month includes: Guard and grounds maintenance fee in gated community. Security alarm system PROARSA. Wi-fi. Washer/dryer. Refrigerator/oven. 2 bedrooms, 2 baths. 103 m2 construction on 1,000 square
 meters lot. Fireplace and deck. Lovely garden, meditation rock on the River Turú. Available starting July 1, 2015. Contact; Michael at or 8843-5322. More photos:

Apartment Lemur del Bosque for rent
San Francisco de Dos Ríos, 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 prefered. Call 8375-6838. Email:

Furnished apartment for rent  Available Now!
Impeccable newly remodeled villa in Villas de Cariari for rent day, week or month. Rates from US$85 per day. Utilities, washer and dryer, car parking,  24 hour security, Wi-Fi, close to airport and shopping. Long=term and corporate renters are accepted.
Contact: Chris English/Spanish U.S. phone: 1-804-699-8073
Costa Rica phone : (506) 6145-7003 Email:

Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 baths, appliances included. High-speed internet installed, Direct TV via sling box on Internet.  Rent per month $750 plus utilities with free internet.  Price for Sale $179,000   Contact Mike:  Check out slide show HERE!

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

Palmares graphic

Homes for rent in Palmares, Alajuela

See our web page:

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.

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
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A.M. Costa Rica's   Fifth news page
Family home

cat trees
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, July 1, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 128
Real Estate
About us

Immigrant rights groups
say border agents collude

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Immigrant rights organizations are accusing federal agents and their unions of colluding with groups that advocate restricting immigration in order to sway America’s national debate on undocumented workers and immigration reform.

In a report issued Tuesday, the Center for New Community alleges some union officials and agents of the Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement violate their duty to impartially enforce the law by working hand-in-hand with immigration opponents.

In doing so, the report says they “lend an undeserved credibility to the organized anti-immigrant movement and, dangerously, assist its efforts to advocate for policies that malign immigrant communities and obstruct future immigration.”

“Should police be setting policy in a democracy?” asked Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center in a teleconference highlighting the report’s release. “That seems absolutely antithetical to the basic ideas of democracy. Police carry out public policy in a democracy, they do not make it. We are not East Germany, we are not a country run by the Stasi.”

The report alleges multiple instances of federal agents and their unions leaking information to immigration opponents, and even appearing at their private events, practices that “call into question the ability of some to uphold their responsibility as stewards of the country’s immigration system.”

As an example, the report points to a recent Twitter posting by the Border Patrol union thanking two of its agents for providing a border tour to an advocacy group and showing the truth on the border.

The U.S. Border Patrol declined to comment on the report, and the union did not respond to a request for comment.

Others were eager to speak out, including one of the advocacy groups accused of collusion, the Washington-based Center for Immigration Studies, which urges more-restrictive U.S. immigration policies.

Director Mark Krikorian scoffed at the report’s allegations. Far from denying contact with law enforcement officers, he defended agents’ actions as a well-intentioned check on what he sees as the Obama administration’s information blackout on illegal immigration.

“They are performing an important function in preventing this administration’s obsessive secrecy from stopping information getting out into the public that people need to know,” said Krikorian.

“The Nixonian pathology that permeates this administration causes them to prevent the release of public information. So we not only don’t apologize, but we are proud of the fact that we are able to get information that ought to be publicly available out into the public,” he said.

As for taking sides in the immigration debate, Krikorian said it is the White House that has aligned itself with immigrant rights groups and attempted to squelch a fact-based national discussion.

“The activist groups complaining about this are proxies for the administration,” he said. “The administration is politicizing immigration information in a way that is outrageous, and all the information that we get is public release. This is information that, in an honest administration, would simply be posted to the Web.”

In the conference call, Potok accused the Center for Immigration Studies and other groups of thinly-veiled racism and a quest to preserve a mostly white nation.

Krikorian said the true extremists are those who push for a dismantling of immigration laws and want to punish honest Border Patrol officers.

“At best they are ambivalent about enforcing immigration laws. At worst, they are hostile to them,” said Krikorian. “And therefore, people who insist on fulfilling their oath of office as Border Patrol agents must be exposed and destroyed, if possible.”

The finger-pointing comes at a time when immigration reform legislation is stalled on Capitol Hill and President Barack Obama is attempting to take matters into his own hands via executive orders, some of which are being challenged in court.

Internet displays its impact
with string of hate crimes

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for distributing propaganda and recruiting, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups says their influence is growing.

The messages may be different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar, as were the results: Last week, a young Islamic extremist killed nearly 40 tourists in Tunisia, and a suicide bomber killed 27 at a Shi'ite mosque in Kuwait. In January, there was the massacre in Paris of 12 people at the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

Rabbi Abraham Cooper of the Simon Wiesenthal Center said the acts are celebrated on the Internet and on social media sites used by extremist groups like the self-described Islamic State.

“They are showing remarkable agility in applying the cutting-edge technologies of the Internet in order to mass market and also in order to get to specific parts of the population,” he said.

He said the Islamic State group has a sophisticated propaganda and recruitment effort that includes videos from the battlefront and a slick online magazine.  It even uses social media to connect its online visitors with its front-line fighters.

The Internet is also a force in U.S. hate crimes.  Dylann Roof, who is charged with the recent killings of nine African-Americans at a Charleston church, absorbed his white supremacist ideology online.

Former neo-Nazi skinhead Tim Zaal, who works with the Wiesenthal Center, said he sees the advocacy of messages similar to those he once believed. He said today's extremists often share a list of perceived enemies: “Zionism, the evil tyrannical Jew. Number two was the United States government, and the transnational corporations.”

Zaal said he used to meet with skinhead friends in a suburban park, where he met with a reporter.  He said that today the Internet speeds the spread of hatred.

“Somebody can be in the middle of South Dakota . . .  and still have access to the narrative and the propaganda,” he said.

Cooper said the Web has produced an online echo chamber.

“It gives a sense of empowerment," he said. "It gives a sense of community: You are not alone.  If you are thinking this way, you are not alone.”

Zaal said extremists hear the rhetoric of hate, but need to hear the other side of the story.

“There needs to be that voice," he said. "And I think the most important voices are voices of people such as myself and other former violent extremists who are doing what they can to bring about that counternarrative.”

The Wiesenthal Center’s Cooper said Internet social sites that host online hate speech need to be be part of the solution. Hate can be marginalized, he said, and online posts that cross the line from hatred to terrorism should not be tolerated.

NSA is back in business
collecting telephone data

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A U.S. court has ruled that the National Security Agency can temporarily resume its bulk collection of Americans' telephone records.

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Monday ruled that the NSA could resume gathering millions of Americans’ phone metadata, call times, dates and durations, to scan for links to foreign terrorists.

The program was suspended after an appeals court in May ruled that the U.S. Patriot Act had never authorized the NSA to collect such data.

A new law, called the Freedom Act, which substantially reformed and narrowed the bulk phone data program, was signed by President Barack Obama a day after the existing program lapsed June 1.

The ruling late Monday allows the program to resume for 180 days, in compliance with the new law. The six month period was designed to give the NSA time to set up an alternative system in which the data is stored by the phone companies.

The U.S. Justice Department welcomed the decision. "We agree with the court's conclusion that the program is lawful, and that in passing the USA Freedom Act, Congress provided for a 180-day transition period for the government to continue the existing collection program until the new mechanism of obtaining call detail records is implemented," said Justice Department spokesman Wyn Hornbuckle.

More Mrs. Clinton emails
released by State Department

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. State Department Tuesday night released hundreds of more pages of emails from the account of former secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in order to fulfill the order of a federal judge.

Clinton, the front-runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, has been criticized for her use of a private email address for her official correspondence while in office between 2009 and 2013. Her Republican rivals contend that Clinton used the private account in order to keep it out of the public record.

A federal judge ordered the department to adhere to a timetable for the rolling release of 55,000 pages of emails sent and received by Mrs. Clinton while she was the top U.S. diplomat. A first batch of emails was released in May. The goal is for the department to publicly unveil 55,000 pages of her emails by the end of January 2016.

The emails are being redacted using Freedom of Information Act standards, blocking any information related to national security, personal privacy, privilege and trade secrets.

Republicans have seized on the email controversy as they press their case that the Obama administration was unprepared for the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador there. Several administrative and congressional investigations have highlighted security vulnerabilities at the U.S. mission in Libya while Mrs. Clinton was secretary of State.

Republicans, insisting that the Obama administration sought to conceal the terrorist nature of the attack, have created a special Benghazi committee in the House of Representatives. Mrs. Clinton's allies say the panel is merely a political tool to disrupt the candidate on her quest for the White House.

State Department spokesman John Kirby said at a news briefing Tuesday that the latest batch of emails covers March through December 2009. Mrs. Clinton has said she wants the department to release all of the emails as soon as possible.

Extremists behead witches,
rights watch group says

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Islamic extremists in Syria have executed more than 3,000 people in the past year, and this week they added to the death toll by beheading two women after accusing them of witchcraft and sorcery, a rights watch group says.

The women’s husbands also were executed, the latest in a long line of barbaric killings carried out by the terror group that has drawn international condemnation.

This marks the first time women have been executed for witchcraft by the group. But in February militants beheaded an elderly man for allegedly invoking magic in a village west of Raqqa, Islamic State headquarters. That killing was witnessed by a large crowd of onlookers, and photographs of the execution were posted on social media accounts associated with supporters.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a London-based rights group that relies on activists for its information, reports the women and their husbands were killed over the weekend, the first couple on Sunday in Deir al-Zor in eastern Syria and the second in al-Mayadin Monday.

Rami Abdel Rahman, theobservatory's head, said it was “the first time his monitoring group had documented women being beheaded” by the extremists.

Kurdish defenders of the Syrian border town of Kobani, however, accused Islamic State fighters of beheading one of their female fighters last year, although it isn’t clear whether the fighter was decapitated after being killed in a firefight.

In October, as Islamic State forces closed on Kobani, there also were accusations the extremists beheaded seven men and three women to frighten locals to give in to their offensive.

The witchcraft allegations are bizarre even for a terror group immersed in a Dark Age view of the world. The Quran does contain references to evil spirits and the evil eye, and it says witchcraft and sorcery are condemned by Allah, but it adds that those who practice witchcraft or sorcery cannot harm people against the will of God.

The Quran does not ordain capital punishment for sorcery nor does it mention punishment except to say offenders will be denied a place in the hereafter.

Last autumn, Iraq’s public broadcaster started airing a sitcom lampooning the gratuitous violence of radical Islam. The satire, called "State of Superstition," set out to ridicule the violent extremist group and its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, as a gang of misfits with the al-Baghdadi-inspired character named the "Beheader."

The terror group has in the past stoned women to death or shot women on allegations of adultery. The Srian rights observatory says of the 3,000 people the terror group has executed, 800 were civilians, including 86 women and 74 children. The group also has killed men for homosexuality.

Rami Abdul Rahman, from the monitoring group, said the executions of the alleged witches likely were carried out to terrify the local population and to keep it cowed and subservient. That often is done through its treatment of women.

The Islamic State has been accused of sexually brutalizing women in the self-declared caliphate straddling Syria and Iraq. In August 2014, the Islamic State distributed 300 captured Yazidi women to its fighters in Syria, according to local activists. The women were considered by the group as spoils of war.

Nazand Begikhani, an adviser to the Kurdistan regional government and researcher at the University of Bristol Gender and Violence Research Center, estimates the Islamic State kidnapped more than 2,500 Yazidi women after they were separated from male relatives, who were shot.

Some Yazidi women have managed to escape or the Islamic State has ransomed them off. But Yazidi women still are being traded, according to the observatory, 40 recently in the city of al-Mayadin with the purchase price ranging from $500 to $2,000.

In Raqqa, as opposed to other towns in territory controlled by the Islamic State, activists say the extremists have been noticeably reducing the number of public executions for transgressions of its moral code.

Amir Salamah, who served until a month ago as a Red Crescent worker in Raqqa, said he believes the extremists are anxious for civilians to stay in the city and not to flee, seeing them as a possible protection from coalition air strikes.

“They are not killing the people in the way they were in the pubic squares,” he said. “They want to use them as human shields.”

He said killings are continuing, but are being done more secretively, with the bodies being disposed of in a pit in the north of the city.

Another activist group, a network that goes by the name Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, said the Islamic State has mounted a vigorous campaign to root out dissidents and has increased its surveillance of Internet cafes in the city.

Real estate-related services (paid category)

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Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo
Photo montage of penthouse
Are you  tired of wasting time searching your home….. with no results?
If so, you should not miss this deal !!!

Special Offer

Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo

* Located on 6th floor.
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* Pool, BBQ area.
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        parking,  cellar.

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* 2 bathrooms.
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Mafi Real Estate: Houses, lots and farms in Costa Rica
If you do not find, what are you looking for, 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
Web Page:

Costa Rica,

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

Visit our Web Site:

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

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
Grecia one
Big house for sale.
Great opportunity !!!

If you know about house for sale prices,  you will realize that this is a real deal.  Original price of  $400,000 now is $320,000.
Due to its characteristics and location, it can also be used for commercial purposes (boutique hotel, offices, medical center).  Large house, 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, one office, just 250 meters from Grecia downtown. High quality construction, built in 2009, high ceilings, balcony with beautiful views over central Grecia valley, elegant luxury furnitures included, network cabling 6 gigabits throughout the house, Giant TV flat projection system of 120 inches in the main room, sound system 7.1 channel. Air conditioning system, security system, and cameras, lighting system in open areas. 4-car parking space plus large garage, Recommended for large families.

Property Location: Central Grecia, Alajuela
Total area construction (two floors):
252 square meters
Total area: 250 square meters
Construction Type: Concrete
See more photos click HERE!

Grecias two
  Send us your request to our email:


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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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:

Real estate for sale (paid category)

Highway Restaurant & Bar
Golfito, Costa Rica’s paradise. About 5 acre, choice property on the highway. Ideal to build a drive-in restaurant and home. Asking Only $65,000.00 Agents inquiries welcome. Call Jens: 2775-0225 or

San Ramon
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed, Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike:   Check out slide show HERE!

Goetl in Palo Seco

Charming small oceanfront hotel for sale in Playa Palo Seco
Ideal oceanfront location with back up to a mangrove estuary. The
charming small hotel has a fully equipped kitchen, bar and restaurant and is exceptionnally well maintained. Located on a very private beach of the central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica 35 minutes north of Quepos-Manuel Antonio and 45 minutes south of  Playa Jacó. The main building is a two-storey house with 12 bedrooms. The lot measures 3,054 M2. Beautiful gardens around the large pool and exceptional flora and fauna. Well mentioned in tourist guides like Lonely Planet and Guide Ulysse. Offered at $1,250,000. USD
or call (506) 8707-1037  (506) 2778-8408

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:

Aerial Ocean and Volcano Views with Boutique Coffee! 33 Acres $725,000. Click HERE!

San Ramon rollover
Three-bedroom home with view near San Ramón
Beautiful house in magical setting in the hills above San Ramón in Costa Rica can be yours for $185,000! House was built 10 years ago with soaring 16-foot ceilings.  Enclosed area is 1,200 square feet with 3 bedrooms and 2 full bathrooms, large kitchen, and utility room.  It is located at 4,000 feet with typical temperatures ranging between 75 and the low 80s during the day and the low to mid-60s at night.  The house is offered fully furnished, including all appliances (nearly new energy-efficient Samsung refrigerator). The front of the house features a large covered veranda (another 500 square feet), with a barbecue and outdoor patio furniture to seat 8, and hooks for a hammock. There are many tropical plants, flowers, and trees are on the half-acre property.  Set on the far western edge of the Central Valley in a small, pastoral community, it's only 10 minutes to San Ramón and its many small stores, restaurants, museums, a branch campus of the University of Costa Rica, and a weekly farmers' market.
See additional pictures at
Phone: (506) 7009-0364

For sale 5,200 m2 Escazú
Fantastic location for condo, hotel, restaurant.
Large lower lot, incredible views. Flexible zoning.
Easy to get liquor license. Low interest financing.
Call: 877-778-8515
(506) 8307-0164
(410) 975-6703

private ranch home
Small private ranch for sale
This exceptional private ranch sits on a 9+ hectare lot and supports 15-20 horses. Only 2 hours south of San José, on the road to Puriscal. Roomy stalls all with drains, water hookup, lights and fans, grooming and shoeing área. Two-story house all furnished and cowboy house. Don't miss your chance on that turnkey operation.  Offered at $889,000.
E-mail:  or call (506) 8707-1037 
(506) 2778-8408 Web:

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.

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

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

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

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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, July 1, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 128
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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Export-Import Bank officially dead

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A controversial government agency that helps U.S. companies export goods officially went out of business at midnight, but supporters think they can rescue the U.S. Export-Import Bank in a week or so.

Without a charter from Congress, the bank cannot make new loans or sell the insurance that protects American companies if a foreign customer does not pay for an order. The bank will continue to service existing contracts. 

Lawmakers left Washington for a July 4 Independence Day holiday break without voting on continuing the Export-Import Bank, something Rep. Maxine Waters called unconscionable.

Waters, Rep. Steny Hoyer and other Democrats say they are confident they can win approval of the bank if they can get both houses of Congress to bring the issue to a vote.

In a conference call with journalists, Democratic supporters of the bank said they plan to use parliamentary maneuvers to attach the bank’s reauthorization to a piece of unrelated legislation that most members view as vital to their districts.

Ssupporters say the bank supports thousands of exporters, including some of the largest U.S. companies and many small businesses.  They argue that the agency helps support thousands of U.S. jobs, and note that rival nations like China, Germany and many others do even more to support exports.
The bank has been targeted by some of the most conservative Republicans in Congress, who say the agency is corporate welfare that allows bureaucrats to choose economic winners and losers in a process that would be better left to market forces.

Rep. Jeb Hensarling says most of the bank’s help goes to a few huge corporations that don’t need and should not get government aid.

Smuggling case leads to 12 raids

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Tax police engineered a dozen raids Tuesday to detain five persons. Four face allegations that they have been smuggling millions of dollars of merchandise through the Paseo Canoas border crossing.

More detentions are expected. The merchandise is mainly cigarettes and alcohol, although electronic devices and flat-screen televisions were confiscated, too. The fifth individual faces a drug charge.

Raids were in  Cartago, Escazú, Tres Ríos and Curridabat.

Man loses left hand in argument

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A motorcyclist confronted a man chopping vegetation because the vehicle was hit with some rocks. In the argument that followed, the motorcyclist lost his left hand to a machete blow.

The amputation took place in  Barrio San Isidro, Nicoya, said the Judicial Investigating Organization. The man who had been cutting vegetation was detained on an attempted murder allegation.

The 41-year-old victim was flown to a hospital in the metro area.

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From Page 7:

Trade report notes Dec. 31 deadline

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

Many countries have designed incentive policies to attract foreign direct investment and promote exports based on special exportation areas or free-trade zones. A new publication by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean analyzes these tools and offers proposals to replace them, taking into consideration that several of the current incentives should be dismantled by the end of 2015 because they violate World Trade Organization rules.

The study "New-Generation Public Incentives for Attracting Foreign Direct Investment in Central America," prepared by Jorge Mario Martínez, chief of the commission's International trade and industry unit  in México, identifies good practices globally with emphasis on support mechanisms for services and incentives for research and development and those related to the environment.

Upon analyzing the cases of Costa Rica, Panamá, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, China and countries in the Middle East and North Africa, the report seeks alternatives in light of World Trade Organization regulations that prohibit some of the existing incentives, such as tax exemptions that depend on export performance or on the use of national products by companies located inside free-trade zones, since they have a direct impact on the terms of trade and are considered subsidies, the international trade organization.

As small economies and developing countries, Central American nations obtained a transition period to adapt their incentives to comply with the international rules. However, this period ends Dec. 31.

So there is a need to assess the different economic policy options available to replace these prohibited subsidies in such a way that they do not affect direct investment or exports, but instead foster a greater link between companies in free-trade zones and the national development agenda, the study says.

According to World Trade Organization figures, tax exemptions and fiscal stimuli represented as much as 5.6 percent of Mexico’s gross domestic product and 1 percent of Costa Rica’s in 2005. The publication proposes new-generation incentives that balance the need to attract foreign investment with adherence to the global organization’s regulations.

These include special incentives such as subsidies to services, the sector that has grown the most in recent years — even more than trade in goods.