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(506) 2223-1327                                     Published Tuesday, July 28, 2015, in Vol. 15, No. 147                         Email us
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Library of Congress /Carol Highsmith
This is a 1939 mural on a Library of Congress  wall of Canterbury pilgrims.
Pilgrims traveled to seek grace for millenniums
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Most of the pilgrims on the way to Cartago today and through Saturday probably do not realize that what they are doing probably predates even modern humans.

There is a psychological need to be someplace where the connections with Heaven are stronger.

Recent archaeological discoveries suggest that the Neanderthal was not the brutish subspecies of film and comic book fame. Neanderthal graves have been found with floral offerings, suggesting a belief in an afterlife. One could speculate that such beliefs might even involve migrations to some holy place.

The Turkish site of Göbekli Tepe with its 20-ton pillars may be 15,000 years old.

That site, the standing stones all over the Old World  and completed structures like Stonehenge most likely were pilgrimage destinations because researchers have not found the remains of large communities nearby.

Abydos, a world heritage site, was an important pilgrimage destination for ancient Egyptians because the city was believed to hold the tomb of Osiris. Some wealthy Egyptians even journeyed there after death so they could be buried near the god of the afterlife.  Early Christians made pilgrimages to Abu Mina, also in Egypt.

Clearly there seems to be a human need to visit holy places. But there also is a low-keyed monetary reason, too. Pilgrimages are good business.

One religious historian says that "the pilgrimage each Muslim was to perform at least once in his lifetime was instituted by Mohammed in order to bring the riches of other Muslims to his own tribe of Quraish." Muslim tradition says the pilgrimage to Mecca goes back to the time of Abraham, but some modern scholars doubt this.

The financial aspects of pilgrimage indirectly created one of civilization's great forward leaps.

Johannes Gutenberg, a goldsmith, created an investment group in 1438 to make mirrors to sell to pilgrims at Aachen the next year.  Such trinkets were in steady supply at pilgrimage sites. The faithful were to capture the image of the pilgrimage destination in the mirror as they returned home, thereby carrying the spirit of the place with them.

The Aachen festival was postponed, and  Gutenberg was in a fix. He quickly promised to cut his investors in on a great secret, later found to be movable type. His creation changed the world, promoted the Reformation and led to the publication of
the 42-line Bible in 1455.
print shop
Engaving of a mid-16th century print shop.

The new press quickly began producing printed indulgences that the Catholic faithful could buy to cancel their sins. These also were an aggravation to Martin Luther, who outlined his opposition in his "Ninety-Five Theses," which also ended up being printed and distributed widely.

Perhaps the most famous European pilgrimage is the one to Canterbury Cathedral and the shrine to St. Thomas  Becket, who had been murdered there by henchmen of King Henry II.

Geoffrey Chaucer's series of short stories, "The Canterbury Tales," came out in 1483 and still is a standard in today's English literature classes.  The stories were uttered by Chaucer's pilgrim characters to kill time as they traveled to the holy destination.

The financial aspects are not lost on Costa Ricans. Although the Municipalidad de Cartago opposes private sales in favor of local merchants, pilgrims or romeros, as they are called, will have plenty of opportunity to purchase food and drink along the route. As in the 15th century there will be religious artifacts available in the vicinity of the Basilica de Nuestra Señora de los Ángles.

And there is holy water from the spring on the south side of the church available in special bottles that are the image of the small sculpted rock at the top of the basilica altar.

Replicas of the small stone statute, affectionately known as La Negrita, also are available.

There are some social aspects of the pilgrimage, too, For what other reason would a respectable set of parents allow their teen daughter to go out overnight with a boyfriend?

And just like in  Chaucer's day, all the pilgrims are not pure of heart. For the rest of the week police and agents of the Patronato Nacional de la Infancia will be all over the parade route looking for crimes and checking on the treatment of children.

Basilica increases services for the annual pilgrimage
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Priests at the Basilica de Nuestra Señora de los Ángeles in Cartago are offering Masses morning and evening for the faithful. In addition there is a Rosary scheduled every morning at 5:30 a.m. through Saturday.

The major event is Sunday when a 9 a.m. celebration of the feast day of the Virgen de los Ángeles will take place followed by a 1 p.m. Mass and cultural activities at 2:30 p.m.

Most of the faithful will have gathered by
Saturday evening, and the plaza in front of the basilica is filed with overnight activities, including music groups.

The  Consejo Nacional de Vialidad said Monday that the toll will be suspended at the booths in Tres Ríos on the Carretera Florencio del Castillo at 6 p.m. Saturday until 6 a.m. Sunday.

However, traffic will be heavy as will foot traffic by pilgrims, so expats are advised to use public transport if they are not walking and have to go to Cartago.

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 28, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 147
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A.M. Costa Rica/Sylvia Quesada Hidalgo             
Union official rallies the workers at the legislature

ICE says its gave a list of workers' salaries

 By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The national telecom and electrical company says it has delivered a list of employees and their salaries to a lawmaker but that the list does not include names or numbers of their cédulas.

The firm, the  Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, has brought a Sala IV constitutional court case over the use of employee names in the continuing controversy over disproportionate salaries.

Lawmaker Otto Guevara sought the list. He is waging a campaign against government salaries.

Workers of the state firm took to the streets Monday to protest what they see as attacks against their salaries and also actions by the telecom regulator that hurt the firm.

The company itself Issued a statement Monday that said it is seeking an investigation by the Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones of the conduct by its competitors, Claro and  Telefónica.

The two private firms have eliminated the mobile charge for roaming in Central America. The state firm said that they can do so because they have networks of related companies in Central America.

The state firm known as ICE said this hurts its income.

ICE produces, distributes and sells electricity and it operates a fixed and mobile telephone service. A subsidiary, Radiográfica Cistarricense, S.A., operates an Internet service as does the parent firm. Some of these operations are struggling, in part, because of the high salaries of the workers.

Like other government agencies, the firm awards raises based on the number of years an employee is with the company. In some cases, employees earn double or triple their stated salary.

Guevara made public the company's salaries based on its April filing with the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social. ICE said there were errors, which is why he sought the original numbers from the firm.

The march Monday was to the legislature.

Servicio Nacional de Salud Animal photo            
This is one of the solid waste containers

Campaign urges picking up after pets

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A coalition of private and pubic entities are erecting solid waste containers for animal droppings. The containers will be in five parks for starters.

The entities are the  Municipalidad de San José, Corporación Pipasa S.R.L. and the Servicio Nacional de Salud Animal of the Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganadería

Pipasa, operated by Cargill Costa Rica, provided money for the project and the signage.

In addition to Parque Okayama, containers are or will be in  parques Barrio México, Perú in Mata Redonda, J.F Kennedy in San Sebastián and Parque La Sabana.

10 rescued from sea off Golfito

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A boat overturned and dumped six adults and four children into the sea off Golfito around noon Monday. One was just 5 months old.

The  Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas said that crews of private boats participated in rescues and that a coast guard boat brought the 10 persons to land. One was hospitalized unconscious, the coast guard said.

None of the rescued individuals was wearing a life jacket, said the coast guard. A report identified the craft as the Cristopher.

All of those rescued live in the area, said the coast guard.

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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, July 28

Monopoly alleged in the sugar market

La Prensa Libre: A firm that is importing about 250,000 kilos of sugar from Brazil, claims that sugar is a monopoly here.

Private medical school won't see test contents

La República: The Sala IV has rejected the appeal of the private school UCIMED that sought to see the contents of a recent exam. Only a third of the nation's 1,779 students, who took a test designed by Universidad de Costa Rica in June, received an acceptable score.

Public officials who aspire to a municipal office must resign

CR Hoy: Aug. 6 is the deadline for candidates who now hold certain public offices to resign.

Farmers block the Interamericana Sur

La Prensa Libre: More than 200 farmers from Palmar Sur are on the road on the Térraba bridge to protest an eviction planned by the police.

Water would enter the public domain

La República: Two former presidents are are supporting a legislative bill that would put water in the public domain.

Employment policy for the black population

CR Hoy:  The Ministerio de Trabajo is working on an employment policy specifically for the black population.

— Compiled by Sylvia Quesada Hidalgo


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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 28, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 147
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Another flawed human trafficking report from U.S. State Department
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
with wire service reports

Once again the U.S. State Department issued a human trafficking report on Costa Rica that failed to mention that adult prostitution is not penalized here.

This has been a repeated omission from the annual report, which skews the understanding of the complexity of the situation. The report also does not show that State Department staffers left their office to actually talk to anyone in the sex trafficking or prostitution business. The report seems to rely on statistics from the government and broad statements that are based on no evidence.

A.M. Costa Rica staffers have brought these errors and omissions to the attention of workers at the local U.S. Embassy in past years. Staffers decline to identify who may have actually prepared the report.

The Costa Rican country narrative was included in the annual report that ranks 188 governments across the world on how they combat human trafficking.

Full Costa Rica report HERE!

Costa Rica was relegated to what the State Department calls a tier two watch list. The country was off the watch list in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Says the report:

"Costa Rican women and children are subjected to sex trafficking within the country, with those living in the north and central Pacific coast zones being particularly vulnerable. Authorities have identified adults using children to transport or sell drugs; some of these children may be trafficking victims. There are a significant number of transgender Costa Ricans in the commercial sex industry who are vulnerable to sex trafficking."

The report also calls child sex tourism a serious problem with child sex tourists arriving mostly from the United States and Europe. In fact, prostitution by underage individuals appears to be a cultural problem with some teens turning to that life at the urgings of parents. An even greater problem is molesting and continual sexual activity in households involving underage individuals and an older relative.

The downgrading of the country appears to be, as the report says, because law enforcement efforts declined, and the government did not convict any traffickers, child sex tourists, or individuals who purchased commercial sex acts from child trafficking victims.

The writer of the Costa Rican report had to dig deeply to cite a 2012 case of the former Quepos mayor who was detained in late 2011 and early 2012 on allegations that he was recruiting girls and women for the purpose of prostitution. That case involved a bar in Mata Palo.

For some reason the writer declined to mention police raids
A.M. Costa Rica file photo
Police raid a Guápiles bar-brothel last June 4, 2014.

Sept. 17, 2014, in which 70 women working as prostitutes in three locations were encountered and five persons detained. A 17 year old was working in one of the locations.

The writer also overlooked a raid June 4, 2014, at the Bar y Hotel el Viajero in Guápiles where a 50-year-old man was detained for pimping. Of the 17 women there when agents entered, 10 were Dominican and one was Nicaraguan. 

They would seem to fit the trafficking category although they probably arrived in Costa Rica of their own volition.

The report also covers forced labor and notes that three persons were acquitted in the case of  a fishing boat containing Asian workers that turned up in Costa Rican waters.

The report also notes that those who exit the county at the two international airports pay $1 as part of their exit tax to fight human trafficking. In addition there was a $156,000 payment by the government to a non-profit that aids victims of sexual violence, said the report.

In Washington Monday the State Department says widespread human trafficking is helping fuel vast fortunes on the world economy, leaving millions of people exploited by unscrupulous labor overseers and sex traders in virtually every country of the world.

In its annual human rights report, the State Department called the exploitation modern slavery, brutalizing girls and women into prostitution and forcing men, women and children into low-wage jobs across the globe, if they are even paid at all for their work.

Speaking shortly after the release of the report, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said: "Traffickers are both ruthless and relentless....Traffickers prey on the most vulnerable." He said human trafficking and modern slavery were worth $150 billion a year.

Controversial contract awarded for Ministerio de Obras Públicas job
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The public works ministry said Monday it had awarded a $12 million contract to Eurobau S.A.-Industrial Escosa S.A. for a new building.

The  Cámara Costarricense de la Construcción immediately criticized the decision for the speedy way in which the  Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes put through the contract. The chamber also complained that a letter it sent with complaints never had been answered.

The eight-story building will be in Plaza Víquez not far from the current complex that houses the ministry agencies now.

The consortium that received the contract is expected to begin work at the end of August. The resolution selecting the firm was approved Friday.

The ministry says it had to do a direct contract rather than bidding because it must vacate the current facility that is the property of  Liceo de Costa Rica.

The ministry restricted the firms able to be considered for
new building
Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes  graphic
This is a rendering of the proposed building.

the contract by specifying that they must be skilled in prefabricated concrete.

The chamber said that the way in which the contract was offered kept at least eight other firms from presenting a proposal.

It said a preliminary calculation shows that additional offers would have saved the country $1 million.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica
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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 28, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 147
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Strange claims to fame define some small American communities
By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Americans sometimes brag about the strangest things.

Hidalgo, Texas, where killer bees first came to the United States in the 1980s, proudly proclaims itself to be the Killer Bee Capital of the World. Parkfield, California, the Earthquake Capital of the World, is happy to provide a map directing visitors where to drive to see fault lines.

There are probably too many capitals of something in the United States to keep count,  places like the Fruitcake Capital of the World, Jump Rope Capital of the World, Cowboy Capital of the World and Leap Year Capital of the World, just to name a few.

These sometimes outlandish slogans are often a point of civic pride, which help establish civic identity while attracting the attention of outsiders. The designations can have economic value, which is why some cities and towns go to great lengths to make them stick.

“Most capitals of the world are usually smaller towns. They’re not big cities. Big cities do not need to call attention to themselves that way, whereas a small town does,” said Ken Smith, senior editor of Roadside America, which catalogs off-beat tourist attractions across the United States. “A town wants people to come, they want visitors. Tourists buy gas, eat, buy souvenirs. Help the local economy.”

Sometimes towns fight over the same designation. Claxton, Georgia, and Corsicana, Texas, both call themselves the Fruitcake Capital of the World, and at least three towns claim to be the birthplace of the hamburger.

For Roadside America, the towns that truly make the cut are the ones that are not only able to defend their claims but also put a little effort into it as well.

“In our view, what separates that is, does the town the follow through and put up something that you can look at, like a statue or a monument?” Smith said. “Is there something physical?”

That’s why Seymour, Wisconsin, gets the nod from Roadside America when it comes to being the birthplace of the hamburger.

“Because they’ve got a statue of the guy who they claim invented the hamburger and he’s holding a hamburger. They’ve got a giant hamburger there that you can pose next to,” Smith said. “Those are commitments, physical commitments and, to us, that makes it a worthwhile stop.”

Photo by Flickr user OZinOH
Mothman statue, Point Pleasant, West Virginia
There are a number of U.S. towns that are even proud of their monsters.

Bishopville, South Carolina, has Lizardman, a reptile-like humanoid that is believed to have attacked cars in the late 1980s.

Point Pleasant, West Virginia, is home to Mothman, a moth-like flying man who was first spotted in the late 1960s.

The Fouke Monster, a Sasquatch-like figure, reportedly attacked a local family and livestock in Arkansas in the early 1970s.

All three towns have statues of their monsters that tourists can pose with for pictures.

“So it’s an interesting twist on the notion of civic pride,” said Smith. “That’s kind of changed over the years and now we can be proud of these things that, perhaps formerly, we might consider in poor taste or we might be embarrassed by something.”

Smith isn’t sure if this notion of towns adopting a slogan or nickname is uniquely American, but he tends to think so.

“We like to beat our chests and call attention to ourselves,” he said. “It sounds brazenly American.”

While the occasional slogan might be contrived or insincere, Smith says most of these small towns feel genuine pride in their silly, unique or sometimes-slightly absurd oddities.

And as long as the towns continue to embrace their off-beat attractions, chances are that tourists will, too.

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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                        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

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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:   
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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)

Playa del Coco
Hear the waves and walk to the beach
Villa with separate studio apartment in north Playas del Coco. Two bedrooms and two baths in the villa. Fully furnished.  Laundry facilities. Yard fenced in. Pets Ok. Large covered terrace with views. A/C, satellite TV. Surrounded by gardens, palms and other tropical trees frequented by monkeys. Rent villa for $1,300/month or both for $1,500. Contact owner Linda: 2670-0779 or 8347-4705.

2-bedroom, 2-bathroom, fully furnished American-style apartments with elevator in a secure building in Barrio Amón. Cable, Internet, 
apartment view
water  included.  Shared laundry.  Convenient to Parque Morazán, hotels, restaurants, casinos, city government, National Registry.  $600 per month plus electric.  $300 security.  No lease. For photos and more information contact: 

montage of thre homes
Beautiful Cottages for rent
Cottages located in the mountains of Los Angeles, San Rafael, Heredia. Surrounded by trees and nature, beautiful gardens. 45 minutes from San José. Bus line service, security. Pets allowed.
    - 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 2 balcony, 1 ranch. $900 monthly
          + utilities.
    - 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom. $450 monthly + utilities.
    - 1 bedroom, 1 and 1/2 bathroom, 1 balcony. $500 monthly
         + utilities.
Phone: (506) 8739-0638, (506) 7019-9457, (506) 8993-5801

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.

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!

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.

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A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
Manuel Antonio
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 28, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 147
Real Estate
About us

living the dream

Coldwell Banker

Text of country narrative
in human trafficking report

This is the U.S. State Department's narrative on Costa Rica in the annual human trafficking report. The department puts the country on a tier two watch list, it said.

Costa Rica is a source, transit, and destination country for men, women, and children subjected to sex trafficking and forced labor.

Costa Rican women and children are subjected to sex trafficking within the country, with those living in the north and central Pacific coast zones being particularly vulnerable. Authorities have identified adults using children to transport or sell drugs; some of these children may be trafficking victims. There are a significant number of transgender Costa Ricans in the commercial sex industry who are vulnerable to sex trafficking.

Women and girls from Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, and other Latin American countries have been identified in Costa Rica as victims of sex trafficking and domestic servitude.

Child sex tourism is a serious problem, with child sex tourists arriving mostly from the United States and Europe. Men and children from other Central American countries and from Asian countries, including China, are subjected to conditions of forced labor in Costa Rica, particularly in the agriculture, construction, fishing, and commercial sectors.

Nicaraguan men and women transit Costa Rica en route to Panama, where some are subsequently subjected to forced labor or sex trafficking. Indigenous Panamanians are also reportedly vulnerable to forced labor in agriculture in Costa Rica. Government officials, including a mayor, have been investigated for suspected involvement in sex trafficking.

The Government of Costa Rica does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so. Officials identified 23 victims, investigated 14 suspected cases, and provided anti-trafficking training to some officials and members of the tourism industry.

Despite these measures, the government did not demonstrate overall increasing anti-trafficking efforts compared to the previous reporting period; therefore, Costa Rica is placed on Tier 2 Watch List. Law enforcement efforts declined; the government did not convict any traffickers, child sex tourists, or individuals who purchased commercial sex acts from child trafficking victims.

Victim services remained inadequate, and the government failed to dispense any of the 1,725 billion colones ($3.24 million) accrued in a dedicated government fund to support anti-trafficking and anti-smuggling efforts. The government continued to lack the ability to collect or report comprehensive statistics on its anti-trafficking efforts, due largely to its policy of classifying cases of trafficking that did not involve the displacement of victims as separate crimes.

Recommendations for Costa Rica:

Use resources in the newly established fund to provide comprehensive services for trafficking victims, including child sex trafficking victims, in partnership with civil society organizations; intensify efforts to proactively investigate and prosecute trafficking offenses, including labor trafficking and cases not involving movement, and convict and punish traffickers; amend legislation to define human trafficking consistent with international law; improve the efficacy and implementation of Costa Rica’s victim assistance protocol, particularly in cases occurring outside of the capital, for victims of labor trafficking, and for Costa Rican victims; conduct thorough and transparent criminal investigations and prosecutions of alleged government complicity in trafficking offenses and convict and sentence complicit officials; strengthen dedicated prosecutorial and police units through increased resources and training, including on victim treatment and the distinction between trafficking and smuggling; increase efforts to investigate, prosecute, and convict child sex tourists and others who purchase commercial sex acts from child trafficking victims; improve data collection for law enforcement and victim protection efforts; and finalize an updated national action plan to guide the government’s anti-trafficking efforts.


The government’s anti-trafficking law enforcement efforts declined significantly, with few efforts to hold traffickers criminally accountable. The anti-trafficking law enacted in December 2012, Law 9095, came into effect in February 2013 and prescribes penalties of four to 20 years’ imprisonment; these penalties are sufficiently stringent and commensurate with other serious crimes.

The definition of trafficking in this law is in some respects more narrow than international law — requiring the displacement of the victim — and in other respects more broad — penalizing nontrafficking crimes such as illegal adoption, sale of organs, moving persons for the purpose of prostitution, and labor exploitation that does amount to forced labor.

Data collection on trafficking remained problematic. The attorney general’s office reported investigating 14 new cases of movement-based trafficking. The government prosecuted three defendants for suspected labor trafficking in a 2010 case involving Asian fishermen on boats in Costa Rican waters. This case ended in acquittal and prosecutors have appealed the verdict. There were no additional trafficking prosecutions and no convictions in 2014, compared with at least seven convictions in 2013. Some officials conflated trafficking with smuggling, and authorities reported that a diversion of government resources to combat smuggling contributed to the decrease in law enforcement efforts.

Prosecutors worked with Nicaraguan, Mexican, Dominican, and Panamanian officials on an unspecified number of trafficking investigations in 2013; it is unknown whether any resulted in prosecutions or convictions. The government did not report progress in the pending investigation of a mayor for suspected sex trafficking opened in 2011, and it did not prosecute or convict any government employees complicit in human trafficking or trafficking-related offenses.


While the government identified more victims, it did not make progress in ensuring that identified victims received adequate protection; specialized services were limited, and most were provided by civil society organizations. The government did not collect comprehensive statistics on victims identified and assisted, and the data provided from different agencies could not be fully reconciled. Prosecutors reported the government identified and assisted 23 trafficking victims in 2014, 13 subjected to sex trafficking and 10 to forced labor, an increase from 15 trafficking victims identified and assisted in 2013.

The government did not provide comprehensive details on age, gender, or nationality of these victims. At least five were adults, three of whom were from foreign countries, and one of whom was male. The government had an “immediate attention” protocol, which defined steps for various agencies to take to coordinate the provision of food, lodging, health and psychological support to victims through NGOs, but it did not provide details on the number of victims supported in 2014 or the types of assistance received.

Some officials, particularly outside the capital, remained unaware of the protocol. Authorities have written procedures for identifying victims among vulnerable groups, such as migrants and individuals in prostitution, but NGOs and some officials asserted victim identification was often reactive and referral mechanisms were not always implemented in an effective or timely manner.

The government neither provided nor funded specialized shelters or services for trafficking victims. It gave 83 million colones ($156,000) to one NGO that provided services to victims of sexual violence, some of whom may have been trafficking victims.

There were no shelters available to male victims. The government designated two hospitals with specially trained staff to provide treatment for trafficking victims, but it is unknown whether these facilities cared for any victims in 2014.

Police and NGOs noted victim services were virtually nonexistent outside of the capital. In 2014, the government allocated approximately 73 million colones ($135,000) to cover basic needs such as food, clothing, and travel expenses for victims participating in prosecutions as witnesses, but it is not clear if any victims benefited from these resources, as no new prosecutions were initiated.

The government granted temporary residency status, with permission to work, to two foreign victims in 2014. Victims had the legal right to file a civil complaint to request compensation from traffickers, but no victims received such compensation. The government did not penalize identified victims for unlawful acts committed as a direct result of being subjected to human trafficking; however, insufficient efforts to screen vulnerable populations for indicators of trafficking may have led to some victims being penalized.


The government decreased prevention efforts. The human trafficking and smuggling directorate (which includes civil society members) met quarterly and continued to implement a national action plan on trafficking, though few tangible outcomes were reported. Although the fund to fight human trafficking and smuggling — established in the previous year and financed primarily by the country departure tax of approximately 532 colones ($1) — continued to collect revenue, the government did not disburse this money for any anti-trafficking activities.

Authorities conducted public awareness campaigns, often in partnership with civil society organizations. Labor inspectors held a session for labor recruiters to explain exploitative practices that could constitute violations under anti-trafficking laws, but the government did not report punishment of any recruiters for illegal practices that contribute to trafficking.

The government investigated 32 individuals suspected of paying child trafficking victims for commercial sex, but did not report whether it prosecuted or convicted any individuals for such crimes. A quasi-governmental agency conducted trainings on combating child sex tourism for members of the tourism industry; however, the government did not extradite, prosecute, or convict any child sex tourists in 2014.

The government and NGOs provided anti-trafficking training to 30 diplomatic personnel.

The government did not report efforts to reduce the demand for commercial sex acts or forced labor.

Major firms join Obama
in climate change plan

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Monday 13 giants of the U.S. economy made a pledge to stand with the Obama Administration's American Business Act on Climate Change.

Company executives joined Secretary of State John Kerry and senior White House officials in promising to change the private sector's role in America's efforts to reduce global carbon pollution.

At a conference call before the pledge signing, Brian Deese, Senior advisor to the president, said these select companies are walking the walk in making innovative and ambitious commitments beyond what they are already doing to reduce their carbon footprints.

"What's exciting about this is these commitments are new," Deese said.

The companies supporting the effort are Alcoa, Apple, Bank of America, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Cargill, Coca-Cola, General Motors, Goldman Sachs, Google, Microsoft, PepsiCo, UPS and Wal-mart.

A major goal of their pledge is to have other companies eventually follow in the reduced-carbon footsteps of these firms in their respective industries. The executive branch says this strategy will prove critical as the world prepares to make a binding and universal environmental agreement at the United Nations Climate Change Conference this December in Paris.

"Paris is a big deal," said Kevin McKnight, chief of sustainability at Alcoa. "It's critical that the business community get behind government and ensure that we really do use Paris as the opportunity to really move the world in a different direction."

Obama has committed the United States to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 26 to 28 percent by 2025. This promise was made last November, as Obama met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who promised that his country will peak its emissions by 2030.

The initial partnering companies represented more than $1.3 trillion in revenue last year, and a combined market capitalization of at least $2.5 trillion. As such, their participation will result in $140 billion in new low-carbon investments and more than 1,600 megawatts of new renewable energy. Without these combined efforts from both the public and private sectors, they say, the president's goal would have been considered overly ambitious.

"There's an opportunity to not only demonstrate environmental leadership in the way we operate our company, but also to use the services and products that we have to really empower people and organizations everywhere to transform the way they think about energy and climate issues," said Rob Bernard, Microsoft's chief environmental strategist.

One of the ways that Microsoft will do its part is through a partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, using data to improve agricultural yields and outcomes. Bernard cited a recent report from the Global e-Sustainability Initiative, which predicts that leveraging technology could cut the estimated 2020 carbon emissions by 16.5 percent.

McKnight says, for its part, Alcoa will contribute to the efforts by developing a more lightweight titanium to make cars like the Ford F-150 more fuel efficient. Since aluminum requires a lot of energy to produce, another goal is to demonstrate that the net reduction of greenhouse gas emissions will be equal to at least three times the emissions created by their production.

All countries that have committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions will have to develop their own regulatory frameworks for ensuring success. By having companies commit to long-term carbon emission reduction goals, Deese says this will naturally drive the investment and innovations necessary to uphold those goals in the U.S.

"We need to be smart but very aggressive in using the regulatory tools we have in order to try to drive the long-term trend toward low-carbon economy."

New York magazine features
35 female Cosby accusers

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The latest issue of New York magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby.  The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but their stories are similar.

Over the last year, numerous women, including those featured in New York magazine, have come forward to tell their stories of being drugged and raped by Bill Cosby.

On the streets of New York, people react differently to the allegations against the once revered comedian and social activist.

"It's obvious that he is guilty. I guess you can just add it to the list of rich and powerful people who have got away with things that they did in the past, which have finally caught up with them," said one woman.

Cosby has denied allegations of illegally giving drugs to women in order to have sex with them. But in 2006 he paid an undisclosed sum to a woman who brought a civil case against him, claiming that Cosby had tricked her into taking drugs before he sexually assaulted her. During testimony in the case, the comedian admitted that he had obtained Qualuudes. But his lawyers say he never gave the drug to anyone without their consent.

One of Cosby's attorneys has accused the media of misinterpreting excerpts from the court documents.

"When the deposition said that there was use of Qualuudes - which was.... Qualuudes, which was done often in the 70s - it was considered a party drug, called disco biscuits, and it was something that was used frequently, not just by Mr. Cosby, but other entertainers," said Monique Pressley, one of Cosby’s lawyers.

Cosby has never been criminally charged over the allegations, but his career has suffered. He has lost commercial endorsements, speaking engagements and TV syndication revenue.

Arizona NFL team hires
female linebacker coach

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The Arizona Cardinals of the U.S. National Football League have hired the first female coach in the league's more than 90-year history.

The team announced Monday that head coach Bruce Arians will bring in Jen Welter to coach the Cardinals linebacker unit during the upcoming training camp and preseason as an intern or apprentice.

Welter is a former college rugby player who spent 14 years as a linebacker for the Dallas Diamonds franchise in the Women's Football Alliance. She made history earlier this year when she was hired by the Texas Revolution in the Indoor Football League to coach the linebackers and special team units, making her the first woman to coach in a men's professional football league.

"Coaching is nothing more than teaching," Arians said on the Cardinals Web site about Ms. Welter's hiring. "One thing I have learned from players is 'How are you going to make me better? If you can make me better, I don't care if you're the Green Hornet, I'll listen."

Welter also made history in 2014 when she became a running back and special teams player for the Revolution, making her the first woman to play a non-kicking position in a men's football league.

She is the second woman to be hired as a full-time coach in one of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States, following last year's hiring of Becky Hammon as a full-time assistant by the National Basketball Association's San Antonio Spurs.

The NFL will also witness another breakthrough for women in the upcoming season, when Sarah Thomas takes the field as a full-time game official.

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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 !!!

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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:

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.

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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)

San Rafael
Charming land for sale
Located in  in the mountains of Los Angeles, San Rafael, Heredia. Surrounded by trees and nature, beautiful gardens, and a small river.
Bus line service, security, 45 minutes from San José. Land with 3 houses (cottage type). The lot measures around 6.000 M2.
Sale by the owners, Offered at $750,000 USD. 
Phone: (506) 8739-0638, (506) 7019-9457, (506) 8993-5801,

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.

Coffee farm
Organic coffee farm for sale
34,000 meters square zoned ARC. 130 meters paved road frontage. City water and irrigation runes through property. Year round spring. Bananas and many fruit trees on property. Approx. 1.5K from Sarchí Center, 40K from airport. Plans and permits ready for 2-bedroom house. Proposed subdivision plans are also included. @$15US per meter for total $510,000. Email or

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 $179,500! 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.
Toll free US phone 877-778-8515
In Costa Rica 8307-0164

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.

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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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, July 28, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 147
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News from the BBC up to the minute

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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Ministerio de Seguirdad Pública photo       
  Police officers helped a young sloth cross the road in  Río Jiménez
  de Guácimo, Limón, when they said they saw it nearly hit by a car.
  The officers were  Michell Rizo and Edwin Bustos. They hoisted the
   critter on a palm brach.

Two held after home is burglarized

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Fuerza Pública officers detained two men Sunday night in  La Lima de Ochomogo after a home there was burglarized.

The suspects had $2,600 in cash and a shotgun, all later identified as the property of the homeowner, said police.

The home is in the  San Nicolás district of the central Cartago canton, police reported.

Judicial Investigating Organization photo      
These are the shoes that were taken from the Liberia store.

11 year old among store theft suspects

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

An 11 year old was one of four persons detained Sunday morning in a case of thefts from a store. The other suspects are 18, 57 and 28, said the Judicial Investigating Organization.

The judicial agency said that two agents came upon the four taking articles out of a store and putting them in a truck about 5:30 a.m in  Liberia Centro. Agents managed to stop the truck and a car that accompanied it in  Bagaces.

Agents confiscated dozens of pairs of sports shoes, they said. Entry to the store was gained by cutting the locks, they said.

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From Page 7:

Taxi driver and bus companies fined

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The public service regulator said Monday that a taxi driver in  Grecia, Alajuela, has been fined nearly 8 million colons, some $15,141, for not using a meter and for installing seats in a vehicle authorized to carry the disabled.

The driver appears to have used the vehicle for group rides or  colectivos. The  Junta Directiva del Consejo de Transporte Público said it warned the taxi driver last year but he did not heed the warning.

The complaints came from taxi customers, said the Autoridad Reguladora de Servicios Públicos.

The agency also fined three bus companies for collecting fares higher than authorized. The firms are: Transportes MCA de Ciudad Quesada S.A.,  Transportes Duarte de la Península S.A. and Transporte de Upala S.A.