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(506) 2223-1327                         Published Wednesday, July 23, 2014, in Vol. 14, No. 144                         Email us
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Industry fights major effort to tax tourists more
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The tourism industry is reeling under triple blows that may force operators to pay crippling amounts of back sales tax.

The situation developed April 30 when the  Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía published a decree increasing the admission to national parks and other protected areas under its control.

Costa Ricans and residents continue to pay a modest amount, usually about 1,000 colons a person. But the admission for tourists went up from 2,000 to 4,000 colons a bit less than $4 to $8, depending on the location. Entrance to Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio now is $16 a person.

In addition, the Cámara Nacional de Turismo said that sales tax is being assessed on these admission prices for the first time.

Then it appears that sales tax is being assessed on all types of tourism operations. The tourism chamber plans to outline the specifics of the new taxes today at a press conference, but the organization said that the tourism industry is being affected strongly by the assessment of taxes on activities such as canopy tours, nature walks, rafting and even SCUBA diving.

The chamber said that these news taxes stem from a new interpretation of the general sales tax law. Section C provides for sales tax on night clubs, social centers, centers of recreation and similar. The section now is being interpreted as assessing sales tax on every recreational activity.

The tourism chamber is joined by the Asociación Costarricense de Operadores de Turismo in protesting these taxes.

The complaint reached the floor of the Asamblea Legislativa Tuesday when Rolando González Ulloa complained that the sales tax legislation did not contemplate assessing the levy retroactively.
Section C of tax law

This is what a 2006 law says can be taxed (in part):

a) Restaurantes
b) Cantinas
c) Centros nocturnos, sociales, de recreo y similares
ch) Hoteles, moteles, pensiones y casas de estancia, transitorias o no
d) Talleres de reparación y pintura de toda clase de vehículos

The lawmaker from the Partido Liberación Nacional said he had been in contact with Pablo Heriberto Abarca Mora, president of the tourism chamber.

He attributed the new taxes to Decree 38295 issued by the environmental ministry. He contended that protected areas are not included in the types of locations that originally were listed in the law. He accused the environmental ministry of illegitimately trying to collect this tax from tours, something that is not contemplated in the law.

He said the tourism operators were facing retroactive tax collections for 384 months.

President Luis Guillermo Solís was known to have met privately Tuesday afternoon with representatives of the Ministerio de Hacienda, the parent agency of the Dirección General de Tributación, the tax collector.

The tourism chamber said that the environmental ministry correctly notes that the tax decree was from the Laura Chinchilla administration.

In a statement, the tourism chamber president,  Abarca, said that the industry already was on its knees.

Man who killed street robber remains in custody
By Michael Krumhollz
and the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A man arrested this month after killing a 17-year-old minor in an apparent act of self defense remains in detention, according to a spokeswoman from the Ministerio Público, the office of prosecutors. The man, Randall Alberto Torres Gómez, is under investigation for homicide after he was detained July 12.

They said at the time that the 30-year-old man, now identified as Torres, came upon a street robbery in Ipis de Guadalupe and ordered the robber to desist. When the robber pulled his own gun, the 30 year old fired.

Ministry spokeswoman Evelyn Durán Alvarado said the Fiscalía is waiting for a full report from the Judicial Investigating Organization that includes witness testimonies. Torres remains 
under custody despite the police report admitting he actedin self defense and had legal and up-to-date registry documents for his pistol.

This self defense case coincides with another that occurred Sunday in downtown San José when a man stabbed a suspect who reportedly tried to rob him, said a Fuerza Pública report. Ms. Durán said Tuesday afternoon that information on the incident is scarce and no update could be given on the man, identified by the last name Mena, who was detained on the scene.

The action by prosecutors is in contrast to that afforded a cruise ship passenger, an ex-U.S. Marine, who killed a robber in Limón Feb. 21, 2007. The robber tried to stickup a bus full of cruise ship passengers on a tour, but the ex-Marine grabbed him and choked him with the necklace the assailant was wearing. The Marine was allowed to leave the country the same day on the cruise ship.

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President defends his frequent trips

By Michael Krumholtz
of the A.M. Costa Rica staff

President Luis Guillermo Solís denied that exorbitant funds were used to finance any of his recent business trips. Saturday the president returned from a trip to Brazil where he met with foreign leaders.

Local news stations and pundits have questioned why Solís has taken so many different international trips in his first three months as president.

“There has been no excess in the number of travels nor in the costs spent on those trips,” Solís said, adding that his political travels have been obligatory and important for business and foreign affairs.

In June, Solís and some fellow cabinet members visited the United States in an effort to attract U.S.-based companies for investment into Costa Rica. At his weekly press conference Tuesday, the president was adamant that all these trips have not only been necessary, but that government officials should be able to travel whenever it's necessary for the country's overall good.

“The trips continue being necessary whenever it's required for us to ensure our political objectives abroad,” he said.

Besides Brazil and the U.S., Solís has also traveled to Panamá, El Salvador, and the Dominican Republic since his May 8th inauguration. The president went to Brazil in order to meet with fellow leaders from the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States. He also had a meeting with China President Xi Jingping to negotiate current business deals happening within the country.   

“A country like Costa Rica, with a small and open economy demands foreign relations on a high level,” he said.

Nosara roads
Rolf Sommer and Angela Schmid  photo         
A typical stretch of road in Nosara when there is plenty of traffic

Nosara residents seek Solís' help on roads

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Roads have always been a controversial topic in Nosara on the far Pacific coast.

At one time some residents opposed repairing the 40-kilometers stretch to the main highway because they did not want too many visitors to the fabled beach town. That road was so bad that residents had to stay home if there was significant rain.

Now the problem is closer to home. The roads are terrible and prone to producing dangerous clouds of dust.

There may be some help in store. President Luis Guillermo Solís visits the community today. Some residents say this is the first time a sitting president has been there.

They want the roads repaired immediately and asphalt put down as soon as possible, they said.

Rolf Sommer and Angela Schmid joked that the president is supposed to visit nearby Playa Garza.  "Vamos a ver," they wrote in an email suggesting that the president might not make it due to the roads.

Rural water system laced with poison

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The health ministry said Tuesday that someone poisoned a water tank in a system that supplies about 8,000 persons.

At least five springs are involved, said the Ministerio de Salud.

The discovery generated a major effort by public agencies, including the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social which put some residents in the San Juan Norte de Desamparados clinic.

The health officials told residents to refrain from drinking the contaminated water. Involved are the communities of  Copalchí de Cartago, Higuito and San Miguel de Desamparados.

Residents were told to wash out with soap any containers or tanks that had been filled with water Tuesday.

The symptoms of the poisoning are vomiting, stomach pain and diarrhea, said the health ministry. The residents were urged to obtain their water from the nearest pipes of the Instituto Nacional de Acueductos y Alcantarillados.  The water company is  expected to be providing tankers, too.

The Laboratorio Nacional de Aguas is testing the water, the health ministry said, and results are expected later today.

pedestrian bridge
Consejo de Seguridad Vial photo              
This is the site where the new bridge will be

New pedestrian bridge going up tonight

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Highway officials are closing the roadway between Hatillo 2 and 8 Thursday from 10 p.m. tonight and 4 a.m. Thursday to install the deck of a pedestrian bridge.

The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes and the Consejo de Seguridad Vial said they hope the bridge saves lives.

The highway is called the Alajuelita radial. The bridge is 57 meters (about 187 feet), and the approaches and the abutments already are in place. The Hatillos are in the southern part of San José.

Researchers find unhappy cities still attract

By the University of British Columbia news service

New research identifies the unhappiest cities in the U.S., but finds that some young people are still willing to relocate to them for a good job opportunity or lower housing prices.

The analysis, co-authored by Joshua Gottlieb of the University of British Columbia’s Vancouver School of Economics, suggests people may be deciding to trade happiness for other gains.

The working paper “Unhappy Cities,” released last week by the U.S. National Bureau of Economic Research, relies on a large survey that asks respondents about their satisfaction with life. This measure, which is often interpreted as a measure of happiness, indicates that individuals may willingly endure less happiness in exchange for higher incomes or lower housing costs.

“Our research indicates that people care about more than happiness alone, so other factors may encourage them to stay in a city despite their unhappiness,” says Gottlieb. “This means that researchers and policy makers should not consider an increase in reported happiness as an overriding objective.”

Gottlieb and his co-authors investigated which regions of the U.S. tend to report lower life satisfaction, and found that residents of declining cities appear less happy than those who live in other parts of the U.S. Long-term residents of these cities appear equally as unhappy as newer residents, suggesting that the city’s unhappiness persists over time. Historical data indicate that cities currently in decline were also unhappy in their more prosperous past.

Top 10 happiest metropolitan areas with a population greater than 1 million (as of 2010):

1. Richmond-Petersburg, Virginia;
2. Norfolk-Virginia Beach-Newport News,
3. Washington, D.C.;
4. Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina;
5. Atlanta, Gerogia;
6. Houston, Texas;
7. Jacksonville, Florida;
8. Nashville, Tennessee
9. West Palm Beach-Boca Raton, Florida, and
10. Middlesex-Somerset-Hunterdon, New Jersey.

Other lists are HERE!

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A.M. Costa Rica

Third News Page
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, July 23, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 144
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Museo Nacional plans party
to celebrate Anexión de Nicoya

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The celebratory mood from Nicoya is spilling over to the Museo Nacional, which invites locals to honor the annexation holiday this weekend. After the 190th annual Anexión de Partido de Nicoya kicked off Tuesday night, museum directors are allowing those who won't be able to make it to Nicoya to still enjoy the holiday.

The museum will host its version of the holiday, the Festival de la Anexión, with a schedule full of traditional dances, marimba music and Guanacaste cuisine. On Saturday at 11 a.m., the museum is having a commemoration party with presentations of the folk dancing that make the annexation holiday iconic.

Then on Sunday, beginning at 10 a.m. at the museum's central patio, there will be more dancing as five different folk concerts are planned. The acts include Rescate de Valores, the Banda de Conciertos de San José, Dionisio Cabal, the Compañía Profesional de Baile Popular Merecumbé, and the Asociación de Cultura Popular Costarricense Güipipía.

The San José concert band will be playing in homage to Lucho Bermúdez, who is recognized as one of the most influential Colombian composers of the 20th century.

The event also includes local dishes like mazamorras, a type of porridge, and chorreadas, a sweet corn pancake, among numerous others.
Municipalidad de Nicoya photo
Traditional dancer from the Nicoya celebration in 2013.

Emergency commission declares alert for rain-short Guanacaste
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The national emergency commission is taking action to help the north and central Pacific coast where there is drought and where the lack of rain is expected to increase.

The agency, the Comisión Nacional de Prevención de Riesgos y Atención de Emergencias, said it was declaring a yellow alert for the two areas in order to be more efficient in moving around materials and funds.

The agency expects to be providing food for animals, setting up storage of drinking water and preparing to distribute other necessities like salt for animals.

The agency said Tuesday that the Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganadería estimated loss to the cattle industry at 7 billion colons or about $13.2 million. There has been a loss of about half that amount in other livestock, according to the agricultural ministry.
The cause of the drought, of course, is El Niño in the western Pacific. The Instituto Meteorológico Nacional now says that rainfall in the northern Pacific will be reduced about 65 percent in the short term. The central Pacific faces a shortage of 30 percent, said the institute.

The situation is expected to get worse with El Niño consolidating toward the end of the year. The condition is expected to last through the first three months of 2015.

The agricultural ministry officials said the agency is prepared to provide forage for ranches that have burned out pastures and perhaps go so far as to drill wells in some cases.

Many ranchers in Guanacaste already have moved the cattle to more productive surroundings.

A concern for the emergency commission and the Instituto Nacional de Acueductos y Alcantarillados is the availability of drinking water for humans. The supply is down.

Parque Bolívar zoo plans to mark its 98th birthday this weekend
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The zoo in north San José says it will celebrate its 98th anniversary Saturday and Sunday. Guided tours are planned as well as workshops for all levels of school children, an announcement said.

The correct title is the Parque Zoológico y Jardín Botánico Nacional Simón Bolívar. The event is being called the Feria de Educación Ambiental. The foundation that operates the zoo, the Fundación Pro Zoológicos, said it plans to outline the environmental education offered there.
The program is in conjunction with the Museo Nacional, the Fundación Rapaces de Costa Rica, the Organización de Estudios Tropicales and the Jardín Botánico Else Kientzler. Admissions are charged.

The Laura Chinchilla administration nearly closed down the zoo because the president and some members of the government disagreed with the philosophy of caging animals.

They planned to turn the area into a garden. 

The foundation won a court battle extending its contract.

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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, July 23, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 144
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Human rights report says U.S. unfairly ropes Muslims into terrorism
By the Human Rights Watch news staff

The U.S. Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation have targeted American Muslims in abusive counterterrorism sting operations based on religious and ethnic identity, Human Rights Watch and Columbia Law School’s Human Rights Institute said in a report. Many of the more than 500 terrorism-related cases prosecuted in U.S. federal courts since Sept. 11, 2001, have alienated the very communities that can help prevent terrorist crimes, the report said.

The 214-page report, “Illusion of Justice: Human Rights Abuses in U.S. Terrorism Prosecutions,” examines 27 federal terrorism cases from initiation of the investigations to sentencing and post-conviction conditions of confinement. It documents the significant human cost of certain counterterrorism practices, such as overly aggressive sting operations and unnecessarily restrictive conditions of confinement.

“Americans have been told that their government is keeping them safe by preventing and prosecuting terrorism inside the U.S.,” said Andrea Prasow, deputy Washington director at Human Rights Watch and one of the authors of the report. “But take a closer look and you realize that many of these people would never have committed a crime if not for law enforcement encouraging, pressuring, and sometimes paying them to commit terrorist acts.”

Many prosecutions have properly targeted individuals engaged in planning or financing terror attacks, the groups found. But many others have targeted people who do not appear to have been involved in terrorist plotting or financing at the time the government began to investigate them. And many of the cases involve due process violations and abusive conditions of confinement that have resulted in excessively long prison sentences.

The report is based on more than 215 interviews with people charged with or convicted of terrorism-related crimes, members of their families and their communities, criminal defense attorneys, judges, current and former federal prosecutors, government officials, academics, and other experts.

In some cases the FBI may have created terrorists out of law-abiding individuals by suggesting the idea of taking terrorist action or encouraging the target to act. Multiple studies have found that nearly 50 percent of the federal counterterrorism convictions since Sept. 11, 2001, resulted from informant-based cases.

Almost 30 percent were sting operations in which the informant played an active role in the underlying plot.

In the case of the Newburgh Four, for example, who were accused of planning to blow up synagogues and attack a U.S. military base, a judge said the government “came up with the crime, provided the means, and removed all relevant obstacles,” and had, in the process, made a terrorist out of a man “whose buffoonery is positively Shakespearean in scope.”

The FBI often targeted particularly vulnerable people, including those with intellectual and mental disabilities and the indigent. The government, often acting through informants, then actively developed the plot, persuading and sometimes pressuring the targets to participate, and provided the resources to carry it out.

“The U.S. government should stop treating American Muslims as terrorists-in-waiting,” Ms. Prasow said. “The bar on entrapment in U.S. law is so high that it’s almost impossible for a terrorism suspect to prove. Add that to law enforcement preying on the particularly
vulnerable, such as those with mental or intellectual disabilities, and the very poor, and you have a recipe for rampant human rights abuses.”

Rezwan Ferdaus, for example, pleaded guilty to attempting to blow up a federal building and was sentenced to 17 years in prison. Although an FBI agent even told Ferdaus’ father that his son obviously had mental health problems, the FBI targeted him for a sting operation, sending an informant into Ferdaus’ mosque. Together, the FBI informant and Ferdaus devised a plan to attack the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol, with the FBI providing fake weaponry and funding Ferdaus’ travel. Yet Ferdaus was mentally and physically deteriorating as the fake plot unfolded, suffering depression and seizures so bad his father quit his job to care for him.

The U.S. has also made overly broad use of material support charges, punishing behavior that did not demonstrate an intent to support terrorism, said the report. The courts have accepted prosecutorial tactics that may violate fair trial rights, such as introducing evidence obtained by coercion, classified evidence that cannot be fairly contested, and inflammatory evidence about terrorism in which defendants played no part – and asserting government secrecy claims to limit challenges to surveillance warrants.

Ahmed Omar Abu Ali is a U.S. citizen who alleged that he was whipped and threatened with amputation while detained without charge in Saudi Arabia – after a roundup following the 2003 bombings of Western compounds in the Saudi capital of Riyadh – until he provided a confession to Saudi interrogators that he says was false. Later, when Ali went to trial in Virginia, the judge rejected Ali’s claims of torture and admitted his confession into evidence. He was convicted of conspiracy, providing material support to terrorists, and conspiracy to assassinate the president. He received a life sentence, which he is serving in solitary confinement at the federal supermax prison in Florence, Colorado.

The U.S. has in terrorism cases used harsh and at times abusive conditions of confinement, which often appear excessive in relation to the security risk posed. This includes prolonged solitary confinement and severe restrictions on communicating in pretrial detention, possibly impeding defendants’ ability to assist in their own defense and contributing to their decisions to plead guilty. Judges have imposed excessively lengthy sentences, and some prisoners suffer draconian conditions post-conviction, including prolonged solitary confinement and severe restrictions on contact with families or others, sometimes without explanation or recourse.

Nine months after his arrest on charges of material support for terrorism and while he was refusing a plea deal, Uzair Paracha was moved to a harsh regime of solitary confinement. National security restrictions on his contact with others permitted Paracha to speak only to prison guards.

These abuses have had an adverse impact on American Muslim communities, the report said. The government’s tactics to seek out terrorism suspects, at times before the target has demonstrated any intention to use violence, has undercut parallel efforts to build relationships with American Muslim community leaders and groups that may be critical sources of information to prevent terrorist attacks.

In some communities, these practices have deterred interaction with law enforcement. Some Muslim community members said that fears of government surveillance and informant infiltration have meant they must watch what they say, to whom, and how often they attend services.

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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.

Click photo for another video

The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

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

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

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

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

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


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

Need a book about Costa Rica?

Check out our special selections available at Amazon logo


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

Real estate rental services (paid category)

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

Real estate for rent (paid category)
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.

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  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.

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

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.

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.

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:

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by A.M. Costa Ltda. 2014 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
cat trees
SSan José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, July 23, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 144
Real Estate
About us

Most airlines stop flights
to Ben Gurion Airport

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, the FAA, is prohibiting U.S. airlines from flying to Israel's international airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in Gaza landed nearby, damaging a house and slightly injuring one Israeli. European airlines quickly canceled their flights as well.

Delta, US Airways and United Airlines had already called off their flights Tuesday after hearing about the rocket that landed about 1.6 kilometers from Ben Gurion Airport.  The United States at first said it had not issued any restrictions, but then the Federal Aviation Administration ordered the ban and said it would continue to monitor the situation.

Delta said in a statement that it has suspended operations until further notice to and from Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv and its hub at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport. The Atlanta-based carrier said it was doing so in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration "to ensure the safety of our customers and employees."

Delta diverted one of its New York-to-Tel Aviv flights to Paris after hearing of the attack.

U.S. Airways, which flies from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Tel Aviv, called off its Tuesday flight, while United Airlines indefinitely canceled its flights from Newark, New Jersey, to Tel Aviv.

Dutch national carrier KLM canceled its flight from Amsterdam, while Air France and Germany's Lufthansa also called off their flights to Tel Aviv.

The announcement comes as officials meeting at the International Air Transport Association in Berlin said governments should take the lead on reviewing how risk assessments for airspace are made.

The issue of flying over conflict zones is in focus after Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine on Thursday.

Two U.S. citizens chose
to join and fight as Israelis

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Among Israel's casualties in the Gaza Strip this week: two soldiers born and raised in the United States.

The two men, 24-year-old Max Steinberg of California and 21-year-old Nissim Sean Carmeli from Texas, were so-called lone soldiers, members of the Israel Defense Forces who do not have family in Israel to support them.

In a country where military service is mandatory for most citizens, those who join voluntarily stand out from the crowd.

The Lone Soldier Center, an Israeli non-profit that provides a support system for such fighters, says there are more than 5,700 lone soldiers serving in the defense force.

The center says nearly half are Jews who come from around the world to join, while another 50 percent are Israeli orphans or Israelis from low socio-economic backgrounds.

Others are Israelis shunned by their ultra-Orthodox families and communities for going into the army.

Many lone soldiers who come from abroad describe feeling a connection to the country of their roots and view serving Israel as a calling. More foreign lone soldiers come from the United States than any other country.

Southern California native Steinberg joined the Israeli Defense Forces just six months after visiting Israel for the first time with the popular youth program known as Birthright in 2012. Steinberg's father said his son was completely dedicated and committed to serving Israel and was clear in what the mission was.

Steinberg and fellow American Sean Carmeli were among 13 Israeli soldiers and dozens of Palestinians who died Sunday during the first major ground battle in Gaza in two weeks of fighting between Israel and Hamas. Both were dual American-Israeli citizens and members of the elite Golani Brigade.

Carmeli, who grew up in Texas, was born to Israeli parents and moved to Israel with his family when he was a teenager. His parents returned to Texas for work, and Carmeli could have gone back with them and sought the deferment of military service that is available to children born abroad to Israeli parents, but he chose instead to stay and enlist.

As many as 20,000 people attended Carmeli's funeral in the northern Israeli port town of Haifa, after his favorite soccer team posted a call on Facebook for Israelis to go so he would not be alone.

European politicians rap
waves of rising anti-semitism

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The foreign ministers of France, Germany and Italy denounced Tuesday rising anti-Semitism in their countries, where thousands have protested in recent days against Israel's strikes in Gaza.

The fallout has been significant in France, which is home to Europe's largest Muslim and Jewish communities.

Like elsewhere in Europe, French have taken to the streets in recent days to demonstrate against Israel's deadly offensive in Gaza that has killed more than 600 people.

Most of the demonstrations have been largely peaceful, but in the Paris area, where protesters defied government bans against the rallies, they have taken a violent turn. Youths have attacked synagogues and Jewish businesses.

Roger Cukierman, president of the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions, said French Jews are anguished and fearful.

"We have had eight synagogues attacked, we have had shops being aggressed, mezuzot being torn out. We have heard crowds shouting death to the Jews, not death to Israel, although they pretend to demonstrate in favor of Hamas and Palestinians and against the state of Israel," said Cukierman. The mezuzot is a small religious scroll usually affixed to a door jam.

French political and religious authorities have strongly denounced the violence. France hosts about half a million Jews and 5 million Muslims. The majority of both communities have roots in North Africa, so violence in the Middle East resonates strongly here.

Late Monday, religious leaders gathered for an interfaith service in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles, a day after vandals attacked Jewish businesses and a synagogue there.

French Council of the Muslim Faith head Dalil Boubakeur, who attended the ceremony, said the vast majority of French Muslims are not anti-Semitic. How could they be, he told French radio, when they themselves are battling racism?

Beyond events in the Middle East, France remains haunted by its World War II past. The Vichy regime of occupied France deported thousands of Jews to Nazi concentration camps.

Just a few days ago, the country marked the so-called raid of Vel d'Hiv when more than 8,000 French Jews were rounded up around Paris in 1942 and deported.

France's leftist government has called for zero tolerance against anti-Semitism. Attending a Vel d'Hiv ceremony in Paris, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said the entire country must take up the fight against anti-Semitism.

But recent government bans against the Gaza protests have backfired. The protests took place anyway. So did the violence. More demonstrations are expected this week, and the Jewish community and French authorities are bracing for more violence.

Britain will investigate
murder of ex-Russian spy

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Britain said it would launch a formal inquiry into the death seven years ago of ex-Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko, but they said it has nothing to do with suspected Russian involvement in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in Ukraine last week.

Prime Minister David Cameron's spokesman said there is no link whatsoever between flight MH17 and Tuesday's announcement.

Litvinenko was a former Russian spy who died after drinking radioactive polonium-210 in his tea at a London hotel in 2006. The British investigated Litvinenko's death at the time, without deciding whether the Russian state itself might have been to blame for the murder.

Litvinenko broke ranks with his government and on his deathbed accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of ordering his murder.

The decision to launch a formal inquiry represents a major turnaround for the British government. It had previously resisted a formal inquiry on the grounds that it did not want to make public sensitive intelligence information.

The inquiry will begin July 31 and is expected to last until the end of 2015.

3-D representations are next
for users of social media

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Imagine two dimensional photos and social media avatars being replaced by 3-dimensional representations of the actual user.

According to Ari Shapiro, a research scientist at University of Southern California's Institute for Creative Technologies, that technology is just around the corner.

“For me it is exciting to see what we now have," he said, describing a low-cost technology that may revolutionize social media. "Soon a lot of people will have the capability to model themselves very, very quickly for almost no cost.”

Demonstrating how the 3D avatar technology works at the school's Mixed Reality Lab open house, Shapiro gives attendee Jason Suh a quick body scan. Within minutes, Suh sees an avatar of himself moving around on a computer monitor.

“It was insane. Within a minute or so, they’ve got a copy of me, a 3D model of me, had me jumping and running," Suh said. "Since it’s an avatar of yourself, you can use it on like Facebook or something and personalize yourself — have a 3D model of yourself rather than just a profile picture.”

According to researchers, users will need the appropriate software, a computer and a scanner such as the Microsoft Kinect to get a 360-degree body scan to create the avatar. Since the process takes only a few minutes, users can change the look of the avatar every day.

The technology captures the person’s clothes, hair style and accessories such as glasses or a purse. The computer software then uses a variety of stored animations to make the avatar come to life.

Shapiro says 3D avatars can change the social media experience and make people feel more connected.

“So if you can imagine having a Facebook page where you have not only ... some information but your virtual character speaking the information, or some sort of social application where you and your friends and your family are shown as these avatars," Shapiro said. "So we believe that there’s a very interesting psychological effect that’s going to happen when people start seeing themselves and families and friends inside these simulations. We think it’ll be very powerful.”

While three-dimensional avatars created for Hollywood movies can cost millions of dollars, Shapiro says this type of avatar is much cheaper.

“We expect it’s going to be on the order of $10, $50, maybe $100 tops for a piece of software that can capture you and simulate you.”

Of course, there is a trade-off for the low price tag. For the moment, these avatars are missing some fine details such as dimples and the creasing of the eyes.

But Shapiro says as sensor technology improves, so will the quality. He is currently working on capturing the subtleties of movement and behavior — how a person walks, moves and socializes — in order to create 3-D avatars with personality.

Details are expected today
on another cyber fraud case

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

eBay Inc.'s StubHub online ticket resale service said it was the victim of a massive international cyber fraud ring, the details of which authorities plan to disclose today as they announce arrests in the case.

Cyber thieves got into more than 1,000 StubHub customers' accounts and fraudulently bought tickets for events through the online ticket reseller, a law enforcement official and the company said Tuesday.

StubHub's head of global communications, Glenn Lehrman, said late on Tuesday that his firm has been working with law enforcement around the world for the last year on the case.

Lehrman said he could not say how much money was involved or how many people were being charged ahead of announcements planned by authorities in several countries today.

StubHub, which is based in San Francisco, said that the thieves got account-holders' login and password information from data breaches at other Web sites and retailers or from key-loggers or other malware on the customers' computers, Lehrman said.

“We did not have anyone who hacked into our system,” Lehrman said.

The company detected the unauthorized transactions last year, contacted authorities and gave the affected customers refunds and help changing their passwords, he said.

It's unclear whether the digital prowlers then exploited their access to scoop up more information from the compromised accounts. The company and the law enforcement official wouldn't give further details Tuesday.

Lehrman said the schemes involved a pretty intense network of cyber fraudsters working in concert with each other.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance will announce details about the arrests along with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the City of London Police and the U.S. Secret Service, according to a release from Vance's office Tuesday.

A spokeswoman for the District Attorney's office declined to elaborate. 

The case comes amid growing concern about data thieves are targeting retailers and other consumer giants.

In the last year, major companies such as Target, LinkedIn, eBay and Neiman Marcus have been hacked.

Target, the nation's second-largest discounter, acknowledged in December that data connected to about 40 million credit and debit card accounts was stolen as part of a breach that began over the Thanksgiving weekend.

Even Goodwill Industries Inc. found itself announcing last month that shoppers' payment card data might have been stolen.

Care of sex workers called
vital to eliminate AIDS

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A new series in the medical journal The Lancet says achieving an AIDS-free generation will not be possible unless the human rights of sex workers are recognized. Researchers say sex workers face violence and discrimination and are not able to access the care, treatment and prevention measures they need.

The Lancet articles say people who sell sex – whether in high or low income countries -- “face a disproportionate risk and burden of HIV.” These include women, men and transgenders. Much of the problem, the authors said, has to do with repressive and discriminatory law, policy and practice.

The series was presented at the 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Australia.

Linda-Gail Bekker is one of the authors. She’s a professor of medicine and deputy director of the Desmond Tutu HIV Center at the University of Cape Town.

She said, “Sex is something that all of us need to do as human beings. We’re designed this way. This is what we’re about. And if this is the way HIV is transmitted then we need to just kind of face that -- and address that in such a way that people can continue to live their lives in ways that are sustainable, but we can protect them at the same time.”

She said those in the profession prefer the term sex worker rather than prostitute.

“The community is wanting to think of themselves as doing regular work. And I think that’s in an effort to be recognized as individuals, who have dignity and are making a living. And work towards decriminalization of the profession.”

Professor Bekker said that sex workers are a marginalized community.

“There is huge stigma and discrimination that goes with that. And as a result people find themselves on the fringe of communities – on the fringe of humanity.”

Their activities are driven underground. She said they often do not have access to condoms, lubricants, HIV testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases.

“As a result,” she said, “they become incredibly at risk for HIV acquisition. This virus is a non-discriminator of human beings and it preys upon vulnerable individuals.”

Much of the violence sex workers face comes from police.  The very people, Bekker said, who are supposed to protect. She says sex workers often face stigma and discrimination when they go to health clinics.

“What I say as a public health individual is that I’m not here to decide on what people should or shouldn’t be doing. What I need to do is use the tools at my disposal to make sure that individuals are protected from viruses, particularly when I’ve got the tools to enable that,” she said.

Those tools now include PrEP, pre-exposure prophylaxis, whereby antiretroviral drugs are taken to prevent initial HIV infection. Also, new microbicides, or vaginal gels, are being developed that contain HIV blocking drugs.

Bekker said that the old ABC approach is no longer good enough.

“I don’t know what planet we were on when we thought this was going to be as simple as telling people to abstain. You know, hello. Be faithful or simply condomize. Now, condoms are great. But it’s clear that that’s a hard thing for people to do year in and year out.”

She said a successful HIV prevention and treatment program must include community mobilization that has input from sex workers. Such programs have been effective in Thailand and India. Professor Bekker said they should include peer education and voluntary counseling and testing.

The Lancet series calls prevention programs for sex workers an urgent international priority backed-up by appropriate levels of funding from international and national health programs.

Real estate-related services (paid category)

Best Kitchen
Best Kitchen Depot is the leading kitchen and bath company in the Central American market. We represent the most fast-growing American solid wood cabinet manufacturers. All our products boast the three major industry certifications: Carb2, KCMA environment stewardship and KCMA
construction certifications. We also have state-of-the-art design
capabilities and our delivery lead time is the best in the country.
Please visit our Web site at: and then email or call (506) 2261-0287 or (506) 8383-3104.   

• Interior Design
• Custom Furniture Manufacturing
• Building Completion Services
Interior Design & Custom Furniture Manufacturing
“We regularly exceed client expectations.
We guarantee it.”
Customizing for your vision, lifestyle and budget.
A turnkey home and project completion agency devoted to creative vision and flawless execution. We provide a single, solid and dedicated point of contact for the duration of your real estate project, specializing in:
Our primary goal is to assist our clients with a smooth transition to occupancy while providing highly personalized and distinctive services. We have refined the process to be a hassle free experience, especially valuable for clients who live abroad.
Our custom furniture designs & manufacturing can be contracted independently.
“Serving the Region for 11 years”

Cell phone: (506) - 8707-8008
Office phone: (506) - 2288-5644

Rosa Monge
Rosa Monge

Real estate foreclosure specialist

Great deals available every week
Properties like this:

20.5 acres of pasture for as little as $2,400

Rosa Monge Alvarez
Please email for details

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

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

Remax logo
Re/Max, the Pacific coast expert

Re/Max offers comprehensive Costa Rica Real Estate, vacation rental and relocation services. Our award-winning team is the largest in the country, and can show you the best lifestyle and financial investment properties in the most desirable locations including prime real estate in Tamarindo, Langosta, Conchal, Flamingo, Pinilla, Coco, Hermosa and Playa Panama.  Give us a call in Costa Rica at 506-2653-0073, or toll free from the U.S. and Canada 1-800-385-5930. Re/Max, the name you trust for the finest real estate services in Costa Rica.

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

Check with our Web site at
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
Moran logo

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  
English calls :  (Luis David) Phone: 
(506) 8331-5228

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
Grecia 794
This is the BIGGEST DEAL of the month now at $1,100,000: HERE!
30,000 square meters of land and 750 square-meters of construction.
Grecia home
1,000 square meters of land, 350 square meters of construction.  CLICK HERE
Grecia home
  1,900 square meters of land, 253 square meters of construction. Price $350.000. CLICK HERE
  Send us your request to our email:

Real estate for sale (paid category)


Spectacular view property on a ridge near Alajuela.  Large home and 3 rental homes totaling 7,300 square feet (678 square meters) live-in construction.  Property area is 3,376 square meters (0.83 acres) including a vacant lot for expansion options.  In total there are 10 bedrooms, each with an ensuite bath.  Property has pool, rancho, mirador, courtyard and covered parking.  Homes have romantic fireplaces, built-ins, storage, other luxury features.  Turnkey sale includes all appliances, furniture, fixtures, equipment.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:

A perfect ranch in Cariari, Guápiles
Fertile 42.5 hectares (about 105 acres) with a clean river and a natural spring of good water. Perfect for cattle or horses. Property faces a main road and contains corral and living quarters. Special sale price $245,000. Call (506) 8383-3104 or write

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.


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:  and

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   CR: 4000-1983 (English/Español)
USA: 619-800-8550 (English only)

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

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 
U.S. (732) 962-6525 or CR (506) 8349-2025

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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 or email 
U.S. (732) 962-6525 or CR (506) 8349-2025

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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  U.S. (732) 984-7549
or CR (506) 8349-2025.

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, Local phone numbers: +506 8690-2325   or  +506  8673-0112.

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:  Email inquires to:

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  Home phone: 2417-1041 Cell phone: 8888 4543 Skype glundquist.
To see more Photos of this house, click HERE!

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

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.

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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  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: 
Office phone: 506 2694-0088  Cell phone: 506 8880-8888 
USA # rings in Costa Rica:  305 307-0088

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

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A.M. Costa Rica's
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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, July 23, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 144
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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Trial starting for Caracas protest leader

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

As jailed Venezuelan opposition member Leopoldo López prepares to go on trial today in Caracas for his role in protests earlier this year, his wife appealed to the international community for his release.

Speaking Monday at the National Press Club in Washington, Lilian Tintori said the case against López, who has been detained since February, needs outside pressure on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, who has been repeatedly accused of human rights violations against his opponents.

"Leopoldo López represents a nation-wide sentiment in Venezuela. There are millions of us who want a change," said Ms. Tintori. "We want to make Leopoldo's case known everywhere in the world. And from here to demand that Maduro free Leopoldo."

López, 43, founder of opposition party Popular Will, is charged with public incitement, property damage and criminal conspiracy following opposition-led protests that turned deadly when state forces violently clashed with demonstrators, killing dozens of people. He could face a decade in prison if convicted.

López's human rights attorney, Jared Genser, also spoke in Washington, calling the trial a joke.

"Given the lack of judicial independence and the weight of political pressure being placed on judges and in this case, yet another temporary judge who isn't even permanently appointed to the position, we have no confidence that Leopoldo will receive a fair hearing," said Genser.

A warrant for López's arrest was issued in February. Shortly after he surrendered to Venezuelan authorities, Amnesty International came to the defense of the U.S.-educated former mayor of a Caracas municipality.

A statement from the human rights organization said the charges against López "smack of a politically motivated attempt to silence dissent in the country."

In an interview in Caracas, López's attorney said the trial could take months. His legal team is going by the books, Ms. Tintori said, but that isn't enough in Venezuela right now.

"We believe everything should be done according to due process, and that is what we've been doing. But we're facing, as you know, justice that is unjust in Venezuela," said Ms. Tintori.

Late Monday, Ms. Tintori announced that her husband had been released from isolation after two months of what she called extreme psychological torture in which he had been denied visitors.

The youngest of the couple's two children learned to walk in his father's cell before jail officials limited his family's access, Ms. Tintori said.

"I promise my son Leopoldo Santiago that he's going to walk alongside his dad, and he's going to see Venezuela transform," she said.

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From Page 7;

Bacardi says new service center to open Sept.1

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Bacardi & Co., Ltda., announced Tuesday that it will be hiring numerous positions for it's new service center in Escazú. These jobs will primarily center around financial and technical service for the Cuban business that has become the biggest private spirits company in the world.

"There are big opportunities for the base of highly qualified professionals in Costa Rica who want to unite themselves with a business that has a legacy of more than 150 years of passion and excellence," said Kevin McNamara, who is vice president of Bacardi.

Interviews are now taking place for all vacancies in anticipation of the service center's grand opening Sept. 1. Open positions include those in accounting, finances, and supervision.

"Again we have successfully managed to attract investments from an important company thanks to the specialized talent of Costa Ricans," said Minister of Comercio Exterior Alexander Mora. "This announcement reaffirms the important growth of the service sector in Costa Rica."

Mora said the sector now employs more than 46,000 Costa Ricans.

"The Bacardi service center is a great example of how the country is in good position for additional value operations from multinational corporate leaders," said Gabriela Llobet, director of the Coalición Costarricense de Iniciativas de Desarrollo.