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A.M. Costa Rica
Your daily English-language news source Monday through Friday

 
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Eco Realtors
(506) 2223-1327                          Published Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013, in Vol. 13, No. 191                 Email us
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Jo Stuart
 
Cascata del Bosco




Future sales will require registration and asset checks
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

New rules have gone into effect that require real estate developers to register and receive approval of their financial  status before selling to the public. The real estate firms are being covered by a rule that also applies to concert promoters and producers of other public events who receive money beforehand.

Both types of firms are supposed to register with the  Comisión Nacional de Consumidor by next March 23.

The requirement is part of a reform of the country's consumer protection law. The summary of the changes came from the Ministerio de Economía Industria y Comercio Wednesday.

Another change spells out more clearly the rights of consumers who have purchased a defective product that is under guarantee. There also is a paragraph that allows unannounced searches if a business is suspected of anti-competitive actions like price fixing.

During the property boom which ended in a downturn in 2008, a number of firms sold condos, building lots and other forms of residential real estate before the properties were built. Some of the projects were simply scams. Others suffered financial setbacks because of the deteriorating market conditions. Many customers lost money.

The new regulations say that those who engage in sales for future completion must demonstrate their economic solvency or provide some form of guarantee if the firm does not have funds to complete the project. Elsewhere developers would purchase a project completion bond from an insurance provider.
Some concert customers also have lost money when the planned show was canceled and not all of the funds were returned.

The decree, which was published Aug. 23, update the product guarantee provisions of Law 7472 by mandating time deadlines. The rules basically are directed at the purchase of major appliances or perhaps vehicles.

Repair of such new but defective items has to be done within 15 days. If more time is needed, the vendor has to give the consumer the right of exchange. The ministry said that some firms abuse the consumer by causing them to endure more than one repair visit on new items. The ruling also says that a guarantee cannot be fulfilled if repairing the item results in a reduction of quality.

The original law contained a lot of information about guarantees, but did not address these points.
The surprise inspections can be done by the Comisión para Promover la Competencia when doing so is the only way to obtain information about anti-competitive practices.

The decree also requires that the ministry is informed if a merger is planned between two major firms and the result would convert a competitive market into a monopoly.

The time limits on guarantees would eliminate problems that some expats have with multiple service calls on major appliances purchased new. One couple reported this week that they have had four unsuccessful service calls on a new refrigerator that would not work when they brought it home. They have been without a refrigerator now for 10 weeks while an exchange is negotiated, they said.


Police get new shipment of vehicles and equipment
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The security ministry and the Fuerza Pública showed off 26 new vehicles, including a bus, Wednesday, and officials said more were on the way.

The ministry also has purchased 376 reflective vests, 181 protective vests and 229 hydration vests. The later are of the type that hikers or marathon runners use to carry a personal water supply. The cost was 900 million colons, or about $1.8 million.

Officials said that the new vehicles were part of a strategy to cover more territory. However, 20 of the vehicles will remain in San José, and five will be assigned to police in Limón province.

Juan José Andrade, the director general of the Fuerza Pública, said that more cars and equipment were on the way. 

He said the vehicles and equipment would be assigned according to a map of criminal incidents that is being maintained by the police.

The hydration vests would be useful to officers assigned to chop marijuana plants in the high Talamancas or perhaps for those on patrol along the northern border with Nicaragua.

The Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía y
new
                        vehicles
Ministerio de Gobernación, Polícia
y Seguridad Pública/Jorge Alonso Alvarez
Hydration vests and protective vests are among the purchases.

Seguridad Pública has been maintaining patrols and   an outpost on Isla Calero, which is the center of a territorial dispute with the Nicaraguan government.


Country moves step closer to European Union deal
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Rica has been approved for entry into the trade agreement between Central America and the European Union by the permanent representatives in the Council of the EU.

The final step will be approval by the council itself, which is expected in time for the agreement to enter into force Tuesday. That final OK may take place today or Friday, according to Anabel González, the  minister of Comercio Exterior.
The ministry noted that the European Union is the second most important market for Costa Rica for trade and investment.

Costa Rica exported $2.1 billion to the EU in 2012 and imported $1.2 billion.

Direct investment in 2010 was $485 million.

The trade pact is expected to open new opportunities for firms in Costa Rica and also foster regional integration, said the ministry.

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A.M. Costa Rica's  Second news page
San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 191

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Spprts,em's Lodge

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


Dentistry

Marco Cavallini & Associates
Dental Implants and Crowns

Dr. Marco A. Muñoz Cavallini has placed and restored
DR. Cavallini
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over 17,000 dental implants since 1980. The Dr. Marco Muñoz Cavallini Dental Clinic, is recognized as one of the best practices in Dental Reconstruction, Dental Implant placement and Cosmetic Dentistry in Costa Rica and the World. For more information, visit us today at: marcomunozcavallini.com
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Psychotherapy

Lucinda Gray, Ph.D.
California Licensed Psychologist
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Dr. KLycinda
                                                  Gray
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Architects

Organe
                                                  headline
Architecture-Real Estate-Development

At Architect Orange we are inspired by the visions of each of our clients, and have worked diligently to embody those visions in our work.

We have locations in Atenas (servicing Central Valley/Beach areas)
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Contact Information:
 (506) 2694-4712
Website http://www.architectorange.com
Inquires  info@architectorange.com
Arenal office located at Agua Inn Spa

Orange
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Real estate agents and services

Colinas photo

COLINAS DEL SOL

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A fenced and gated project with the ex-pat hortaculturalist in mind. There are 88 clear-title hobby farms with water and electricity.  The layout is designed to provide ample space for your vegetable gardening ands fruit tree projects.
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 Libertad, Guanacaste, Costa Rica, 15 minutes to Playa del Coco or Playa Hermosa
and 20 minutes to Liberia airport.
Please contact Jim Day at JimDay50@aol.com   or    Phone:  001 517 484-3675.
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Send us your request to our email: info@greciarealestate.com
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Our agents have been here a minimum of 10 years:
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Toll Free: 1-888-782-1119 
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Residency experts

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Getting and authenticating documents can be a chore —

we know how to do it. Experienced with many nationalities. Up-to-date on
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www.residencyincostarica.com
Tel: (323) 255-6116
7999-9/11/13


Legal services

FULLY BILINGUAL ATTORNEY
& NOTARY PUBLIC

Arcelio Hernandez

Official English/Spanish translator and interpreter
Serving the international community  since 2001
Lic. Arcelio Hernandez Mussio, Jr.
With over a decade of experience in the fields of:
Family law, criminal & constitutional law, civil & commercial law

Visit the website at:  CRTitle.com
Email: lawyer@crtitle.com
Cell: 8710-9827
Skype:  hernandez.mussio
Serving the Great Metropolitan Area, Central and South Pacific
scales
Member of the Colegio de Abogados de Costa Rica
Lawyer ID number: 12.358
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KEARNEY-LAWSON & Asoc.
Lic.Gregory Kearney Lawson.
Attorneys at Law and real estate brokers
Relocation services, Wedding Planning
Greg Kearney
 
*Investments  *Corporations
*Tax Shelters *Immigration
*Real Estate Sales in Costa Rica
*Name & Product registration
*Business procedures 
*Family and Labor Law
*Locate People   *Private Investigations
  Phone:  7157-9092
 Phone: (506) 2232-1014
7920-10/11/13


Accountants

U.S. Tax International
U.S. Tax rollover
Plus Costa Rican taxes, accounting, and legal services
Over 15 years in Costa Rica
(English Spoken)


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  U.S 786-206-9473
FAX: 2231-3300

E-mail: ustax@lawyer.com
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U.S. Income Tax
David G. Housman Attorney & C.P.A
.
in Costa Rica 32 years.
Specializing in all matters of concern to U.S. taxpayers residing abroad, including all new passport and other
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I.R.S.  filling requirements foreign income tax exclusion (to $95,100 per year) for all back years. Taxpayers filling past-due tax returns before I.R.S. notice do not face criminal sanctions
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Phone: (506) 2239-2005 Fax 2239-2437

E mail: papahound@comcast.net
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James Brohl, C.P.A. & M.B.A.
US Income Tax,  US GAAP Accounting
& Business Consulting

Uncle Sam's
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• US Tax return preparation  for
individuals and businesses
• eFile returns: secure with faster refunds
• Assist with back reporting and other filing issues
• Take advantage of the Foreign
Income Tax Exclusion (up to $
95,100 in 2012}
• Business Consulting to facilitate working in Costa Rica
• Accounting for US and International Financial Reporting
• Associate of David Housman

Telephone 8305-3149 or 2256-8620
E-mail jrtb_1999@yahoo.com
7410-4/1/13


Help reported to be on the way
for water-short Caribbean coast


By Connie Foss
Special to A.M. Costa Rica

Water problems in the southern Caribbean coast are a combination of outdated infrastructure, population growth and real estate development.

Although the Central Valley and the Pacific coast have been inundated with unexpected rains, the southern Caribbean has experienced an unusually dry month. That highlights the fact that an urgent water shortage exists.

The villages of Cocles and Playa Chiquita have been rationing water for a month, with many households not receiving any water from the daily flow. Residents tolerate water shortages every year, but this year appears to be the worst in history, due to reduced expected rainfall and new homes with swimming pools that have been built without consideration for the limited water supply.

Abner López is a local employee of the Institute Nacional de Acueductos y Alcantarillados. He said the state firm has a two-step plan to bring water from Sandbox, a stable water source near Bribri. The pipe has so far reached Hone Creek, where there was no public water for many residences. The second step of the plan is to bring the pipe from Hone Creek to Cocles, replacing the shallow well that has been the only source of public water since 1999.

At that time, said López, the Cocles well served only 80 homes. Fifteen years ago, there was no water problem. But now there are more than 350 houses served by the Cocles well. It is a shallow well, just 9.70 meters deep, some 32 feet, and a pump produces a maximum of 11.5 liters per second during wet season and only four liters per second when the water level is low. Four liters is just a bit more than a gallon.

This shallow well was never intended to serve 350 homes, not to mention tourists staying in hotels and cabinas during the high season.

A tourist who stayed at Le Cameleon last week complained that he had paid premium prices only to find that there was no water, not even to brush his teeth. Property managers are canceling reservations because rental homes do not have water.

According to López, the solution is not to drill a deeper well. The water company attempted this, but discovered that the water at deeper levels is saline.

In the meantime, López and his co-worker, Miguel Baltodano, along with a volunteer group in Cocles, are actively seeking solutions while they wait for the pipeline to arrive. They are building a reserve tank to store surplus water during the rainy season in order to avoid shortages during the next dry season.  And, they are offering subsidies and interest-free loans to families who need to purchase water tanks to collect surplus water for home use when the next drought comes.
 

Students to strut their stuff
in demonstrations Friday


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Primary and secondary students will take to the main street of San José Friday to demonstrate new projects that have been worked into the curriculum of the Ministerio de Educación Pública.

The students will march and demonstrate their talents from Hospital San Juan de Dios to the Plaza de la Cultura. Among other arts will be living statutes, jugglers, bands, and other aspects of student art, said the ministry.

Some 2,000 students are expected.

At the plaza, they will display projects that include ideas for various classes, including math, science, civics, physical eduction and even Spanish and English.


Nun faces sex allegations
involving up to 13 cases


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A Roman Catholic nun is facing up to 13 allegations of sexual abuse against a minor.

The Poder Judicial identified her by the last name of Mejia and said that prosecutors are seeking restrictions, including that she exercise no type of religious activity.

The woman, 28, appeared with her lawyer for questioning Wednesday, the Poder Judicial said.

She was working with a private children's home in San Joaquín de Flores, Heredia. The home had a contract with the Patronato Nacional de la Infancia, which filed the initial complaint. The home has since been closed.


Drug arrests in Golfito

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Anti-drug police said they detained a couple in the La Mona section of Golfito, Puntarenas, on allegations that they were selling crack cocaine and marijuana. The Policía de Control de Drogas said some 175,500 colons, about $350, in cash were confiscated as well as drugs.


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Old pages

Each day someone complains via e-mail that the newspages are from yesterday or the day before. A.M. Costa Rica staffers check every page and every link when the newspaper is made available at 2 a.m. each week day.

So the problem is with the browser in each reader's computer. Particularly when the connection with the server is slow, a computer will look to the latest page in its internal memory and serve up that page.

Readers should refresh the page and, if necessary, dump the cache of their computer, if this problem persists. Readers in Costa Rica have this problem frequently because the local Internet provider has continual problems.


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Del
                Rey

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The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details


Tambor


A.M. Costa Rica

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advertising reaches
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unique visitors
every weekday
in up to 90 countries.

San José, Costa Rica, Thursday,  Sept. 26, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 191
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Restaurants seek to differentiate themselves in a tough market
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The nation's restaurants are trying to create strategies to improve their operations and attract loyal customers. But they face high operating costs, turnover of personnel and heavy competition.

Representatives of 143 restaurants that are members of the Cámara Costarricense de Restaurantes considered these challenges in a symposium  seeking to attract national and international tourists. The president of the chamber, Manuel Burgos, presented a report on the most recent survey. Some 40 percent of those surveyed said that social networking was important to maintain visibility.

Guillermo Siles, the director of a Peruvian association of
restaurants, discussed the increase in quality in his country noted that one eating place there, Astrid y Gastón, had been named the best in Latin America.

Costa Rican restaurants tried to develop plans to strengthen their offerings not only from the point of view of quality but also service, the chamber said.

The chamber is involved in working with the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo, the Club de La Gastronomía Epicúrea and other agencies and organizations to create a long-term plan.

Representatives of eight restaurants worked to create foods from native Costa Rican plants that could be signature dishes that are profitable and stimulate other chefs to follow this path.



Refinery in Moín adding
to its solar panel arsenal

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Refinadora Costarricense de Petróleo has installed 160 solar panels on the sprawling dining hall on the refinery grounds in Moín.

The petroleum monopoly spent $113,281 with the firm Elvatron S.A. for the job. On a sunny day the panels will generate 40 kilowatts of power, said the refinery. All of the power generated will be used there, it added.

The refinery has two other solar installations on the site, and together they generate 91 kilowatts in sunny weather, it said.

The company, known as RECOPE, pays for electricity at a higher rate than homeowners because it is a commercial installation.

The firm said part of the reason for installing the panels was to mitigate climate change.
solar
Refinadora Costarricense de Petróleo photo
Workman installs one of the final panels on dining hall roof.

Del Rey HOtel

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Thursday,  Sept. 26, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 191
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Echosounder gets the blame
in beaching of whales in 2008


By the Wildlife Conservation Society news staff


An independent scientific review panel has concluded that the mass stranding of approximately 100 melon-headed whales in the Loza Lagoon system in northwest Madagascar in 2008 was primarily triggered by acoustic stimuli, more specifically, a multi-beam echosounder system operated by a survey vessel contracted by ExxonMobil Exploration and Production (Northern Madagascar) Limited.

In response to the event and with assistance from the International Fund for Animal Welfare, the Wildlife Conservation Society led an international stranding team to help return live whales from the lagoon system to the open sea and to conduct necropsies on dead whales to determine the cause of death.

According to the final report issued Wednesday, this is the first known marine mammal mass stranding event of this nature to be closely associated with high-frequency mapping sonar systems. Based on these findings, there is cause for concern over the impact of noise on marine mammals as these high-frequency mapping sonar systems are used by various stakeholders including the hydrocarbon industry, military, and research vessels used by other industries.

The report concluded of the multi-beam echosounder systems: “The potential for behavioral responses and indirect injury or mortality from the use of similar MBES should be considered in future environmental assessments, operational planning and regulatory decisions.”

The Wildlife Conservation Society and the International Fund for Animal Welfare welcomed the report and praised all those involved in the process.

While aspects of the stranding remain unknown, the panel concluded that a multi-beam echosounder system, operated intermittently by a survey vessel moving down the shelf-break the day before the event was the most plausible and likely behavioral trigger for the animals initially entering the lagoon system.
whale
Wildlife Conservation Society/T. Collins
One of the rescued melon-headed whales heads for open sea.


 
Vacation, travel and hospitality
Ready For a Vacation to Costa Rica?
VacationsCostaRica.com offers customized, upscale vacations to Costa Rica, planned by our team of in-country travel experts. Call us Toll Free: 1-800-606-1860 or locally in San Jose: 2296-7715.  We also offer trips to Panama, visit: VacationToPanama.com. Are you a fisherman? Our local experts will help arrange fishing trips to Costa Rica.
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The Relocation/Retirement tour with the
 *HIGHEST SUCCESS RATE
OF RELOCATION*

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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.
Bird near window
One of many awesome birds that feast 15 feet from our living room couch.
Meet many Expats who are willing to share their experiences and how the tour has value long after the “lust” wears off.
See how to choose a Retirement tour video by past guest!
http://www.vimeo.com/5656822

Ask the others what you get for your money, and then compare the quality of accommodations, quality, quantity and variety of food and drink to measure the best value for your money.  Learn how others “talk the talk” and learn who really can “walk the walk
Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
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Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat
Steve and Debbie Legg
Toll Free: 1-888-828-9245       In Costa Rica: (506)-2478-0023 or 8333-6863

Our Vision at Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat is to create the perfect blend of Adventure, Discovery and Tranquility for each guest.  Plan an Adventure zooming along a zip line high in the canopy or horseback riding though forests, farms and rivers. Discover the magical wonders of the flora and fauna of Costa Rica. Experience Tranquility in one of our cabins tucked in our 26 acres. Located in Monterrey, San Carlos, in the mountains above Fortuna, we enjoy spectacular, panoramic views of the Arenal Volcano and its lava flow. Please see our Web site for more information. www.leavesandlizards.com or e-mail us at leavesandlizards@gmail.com.
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Costa Rica’s #1 Time –Tested Relocation/Retirement Tours
Christopher Howard's Award-winning Combination Relocation/Retirement Tour. NO other retirement tour offers MORE options...MORE areas visited, MORE information, MORE people just like you who have made the move and a LONGER
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Christ Howard with Max
retiring in Costa Rica,  and who has personally helped over 10,000 people with ALL BUDGETS relocate SUCCESSFULLY over the last 35 years. CUSTOM TAILOR-MADE TOURS are also available for people with special needs or who can’t take one of our fixed-date tours. ALL tours include EXTENSIVE touring and a highly informative SEMINAR by the country’s most renowned EXPERTS in their respective fields. Also visit: Live in Costa Rica to check out our NEW tour prices and specials.  Customer satisfaction 100% guaranteed! MY REFERENCES.

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*FREE BONUS all people who sign up for the tour receive a FREE copy of the 16th edition of  the bestseller “New Golden Door to Retirement and Living in Costa Rica. At the conclusion of the tour they also receive FREE eBook copies of Christopher Howard’s other one-of-a-kind  bestsellers “Official Guide to Costa Rican Spanish,” “The Official Guide to Real Estate In Costa Rica” and “The Official Guide to Costa Rica’s Legal System for Tontos (dumbells).” Almost 2,000 pages of INVALUABLE material in all!
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Howard Spanish cover

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A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Business
wanted
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)
COMPLETELY and nicely furnished apartments
apartment view
in San José, and one condo in Escazú. Fast Internet, cable TV, hot water. Large American appliances including washer and dryer. Both convenient locations. No pets. $600 per month. Contact: rentnowcr@gmail.com or call 8555-9819.
8095-1020/13

prime
                                    properties
ATTENTION EXPATS:
 
We have many prime properties available for long-term rentals.
Rohrmoser
Escazú
Santa Ana
 

  rentals.sanjose@gmail.com
8094-10/20/13

Lovely cottage on private coffee farm
One spacious bedroom, one bath, office room/spare room with high speed DSL internet, fully equipped kitchen, phone line,
Sarchi cottage
balcony with beautiful view, especially at night with the far off lights of San José. Farm is gated and guarded, private and peaceful, owner on-site. Sarchi is a quiet small town about 30-40 min from the airport, a perfect base to explore from and also get a
feel for normal, day-to-day Tico life. Rental is $575 per month, 3 months minimum. All utilities included. Shorter stays at $45 per night, 2 nights minimum. $225 per week, and $30 per additional night. Sorry, no pets.  Contact jogya345@yahoo.com or 8308-7732.
8093-10/16/13

house for rent
House for rent on a large property surrounded by fruit trees and garden on a bus line. Fully furnished, complete laundry room, two bedrooms plus extra room for office, security, electric gate, Internet available.  Located in Monte de la Cruz, San Rafael de Heredia. $475 monthly. Call 2267-6306  Or email: bonillaleda@yahoo.com.
8092-10/20/13

Cute rental house
Beautiful and cozy mountain cottages
in San Rafael de Heredia.
Surrounded by nature. Bus line service. Security.
One or two bedrooms, one or two baths.
$500 or $425, monthly with furniture.
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MORE INFO:  lizrutbeth@gmail.com  (506) 8739-0638.
8083-10/10/13

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 
tropical
of Costa Rica. We are offering homes for every budget and every need. Please visit our Web page at www.tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or contact us at rentals@tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or call at (506) 2654-5442.
8054-2/16/14

Barrio Escalante, totally furnished, 1 BR apartment for single, responsible person. $35 daily, weekly rates. Contact 8385-2542, celigar53@gmail.com.
8018-8/24/13

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

Villas Casa Loma has everything you are looking for.  Best vistas, climate, value.  Four unique homes in a secure private compound on a ridge near Alajuela overlooking the entire Central Valley.  Two are available fully furnished and equipped, each a complete home accommodating 4 persons in two bedrooms with ensuite baths.  Pool, rancho, mirador, other features.  Ask about part-month rates.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.
7968-7/17/13
7875-4/11/13

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A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
Cat trees
San José, Costa Rica, Thursday,  Sept. 26, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 191
Sports
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us







new fish
University of Toronto/Hernán López-Fernández
Different views of the Akawaio penak.

New electric fish genus
found in remote Guyana

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A previously unknown species of electric fish has been discovered in the so-called lost world of northeastern South America.

Researchers at the University of Toronto Scarborough say the Akawio penak, a thin eel-like fish was discovered in shallow, murky water in the upper Mazaruni River area in northern Guyana.

“The fact that this area is so remote and has been isolated for such a long time means you are quite likely to find new species,” said Nathan Lovejoy, a professor.

The upper Mazaruni River is a hotspot for biological diversity, yet remains largely unexplored because of its remote location. The area contains countless rivers on top of a series of uplands that have remained isolated for more than 30 million years.

Lovejoy’s team sequenced the fish’s DNA and discovered that it was so different from other similar fish that it represented a new genus, a taxonomic classification level above species.

While the Akawio penak does produce an electric field, it is not to stun prey but rather it is used as a navigational aid. The field also detects objects and is used to communicate with other fish, the researchers say. Given the cloudy waters in which the fish lives, the electric field is advantageous.

The species is named in honor of the Akawaio Amerindians that populate the upper Mazaruni.

“The Mazaruni contains many unique species that aren’t found anywhere else in the world. It’s an extremely important area in South America in terms of biodiversity,” said Lovejoy.

The results of the discovery are published in the recent edition of the journal Zoologica Scripta.


Court files show many lapses
in U.S. background checks


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Federal prosecutors have documented at least 350 instances of faulty background investigations done by private contractors and special agents for the U.S. Office of Personnel Management in recent years, illustrating what some lawmakers call systemic weaknesses in the granting of federal security clearances.

Reporters calculated the total by reviewing court documents and press releases from prosecutors for 21 cases resulting in convictions that involved the making of false statements from December 2004 to March 2012.

These are the cases government officials have cited to assert that action is taken against investigators who falsely claim to have reviewed records or done interviews for background checks submitted to the Office of Personnel Management. Not all the cases identified a specific number of fabrications.

The 350 falsified reports represent only a small percentage of the number of background investigations conducted each year, either by the Office of Personnel Management's own investigators or a handful of private contractors it uses for most of the work.

The Government Accountability Office testified to a congressional committee in June that the Office of Personnel Management received over $1 billion to conduct more than 2 million background investigations for government employees in fiscal 2011.

But the details of the cases show how cracks in the system may allow employees to obtain clearances without proper vetting.

In one case, a private contractor investigator, who pleaded guilty to making a false statement, reported interviewing a person who had died more than a decade earlier. Another investigator was found guilty of making false statements in checks for applicants seeking top secret clearances for jobs in the Air Force, Army, Navy and U.S. Treasury.

The highest number of convictions, 11, involved special agents for the Office of Personnel Management. Another seven convictions were of employees of USIS, a Virginia-based company that has come under scrutiny for its role in vetting former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden and more recently, Washington Navy Yard shooter Aaron Alexis.

Two of those USIS investigators had the highest number - more than four dozen each - of flawed background check reports sent to the Office of Personnel Management, court documents showed.

USIS faces an ongoing investigation by the Office of Personnel Management's inspector general. The company declined to comment for this story and the inspector general's office would not comment on its probe.

The most severe punishment was given to an investigator who did not take a plea agreement and, instead, went to trial. This investigator was found guilty of six counts of making false statements and sentenced to 27 months in prison.

Those who entered plea agreements generally received sentences of probation and community service, courts records show.

In a statement last week after 13 people died in shootings at the Navy Yard, including gunman Alexis, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia said, "In light of recent events, we plan to step up our efforts to investigate and prosecute the individuals and companies who risk our security by cutting corners and falsifying information in background checks."

In pressing the cases, prosecutors have required defendants to pay more than $1.5 million in restitution to the U.S. government to recover the costs of redoing improper background investigations.

The screening process for security clearances has came under heightened scrutiny this year since Snowden, working as a contract employee assigned to the National Security Agency, used his top-secret clearance to access documents on the agency's electronic eavesdropping that he later gave to the news media.

The issue resurfaced last week with reports that Alexis held a secret security clearance despite violent episodes before and after he received it.

A secret clearance generally lasts 10 years. Ongoing checks are needed because in five to 10 years stuff happens and people change, a Senate aide said.

The Office of Personnel Management contracts out for most of the background check work. But the decision to grant security clearances rests with the government agency that intends to employ the individual.

USIS conducts about 65 percent of the background checks done by private contractors, and more than half of all the investigations conducted by the Office of Personnel Management, according to a statement issued last week by the office of Sen. Claire McCaskill, a Missouri Democrat who is a co-sponsor of legislation aimed at boosting oversight of the security clearance process.

Investigators for other government contractors, including CACI International Inc., were also convicted of making false statements in reports for security clearance background checks. CACI did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A Senate aide said the USIS investigation by the Office of Personnel Management's inspector general revolves around systemic problems in the company's procedures and does not focus on individual investigators.

The inspector general also is investigating the background check done for Alexis before he received clearance to work for the Navy.

In 2012, there were 3.5 million federal employees and 1.1 million contractors who held a secret or top secret clearance and the Office of Personnel Management's security clearance and background investigations cost about $1 billion, Sen. McCaskill's office said.

The Senate Homeland Security Committee has scheduled an Oct. 1 hearing on government clearances and background checks.


U.S. stages great comeback
to prevail in America's Cup


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Oracle Team USA prevailed in a dramatic winner-take-all showdown with Emirates Team New Zealand on Wednesday to win the 34th America's Cup, completing a stirring comeback that helped make the once-troubled event among the most exciting in sailing history.
 
For Oracle and its hard-charging skipper, Australian Jimmy Spithill, the win was an extraordinary sporting triumph, one that saw the team climb back from a seemingly insurmountable 8-1 deficit in the best-of-17 series to keep the trophy it won three years ago.
 
The thrilling final races were also a ringing vindication of Oracle owner Larry Ellison's controversial decision to transform a once-staid yachting event into a TV-friendly, extreme-sports spectacle featuring huge high-speed catamarans that might draw a new generation of enthusiasts to sailing.
 
Emirates Team New Zealand, a plucky challenger that lacked a billionaire sponsor but nonetheless sailed to the brink of Cup victory, must now endure the ignominy of having let the prize slip from its grasp after a grueling two-year campaign of boat development and training that unfolded almost exactly as planned until the final days.
 
Oracle dominated the last race, showcasing the dramatic  improvement in boat speed on the upwind leg of the race that began to emerge a week ago. Oracle seemed to find an extra gear after losing most of the early races, and even overcame a pre-match penalty that required it win 11 races on the water.
 
“On your own you're nothing, but with a team like this around you, they can make you look great,” Spithill said after the race.
 
Just a week ago, New Zealand fans had all but begun celebrating what seemed like an inevitable sporting and economic windfall for the longtime international sailing power, which supported the team with about $30 million in government funds in the hopes of bringing the trophy and attendant tourism and publicity back home.
 
But on Wednesday it was Ellison who was celebrating, joining the crew on the boat for a champagne shower in the moments after the finish.
 
Fans who flocked to the San Francisco bayfront by the tens of thousands for the final races were treated to a little bit of everything: tense on-the-water duels, a near-capsize, winds that were alternately too light and too strong, and even a whale that threatened to disrupt racing.
 
Until just a few weeks ago, the summer-long series of America's Cup events looked like a monumental bust. A British Olympic champion sailing for the Swedish team was killed in a training accident in May, calling the safety of the boats into question and forcing contentious rule changes.
 
New Zealand completely dominated the Louis Vuitton challenger series, which featured only three competitors and saw some races with only one boat charging around the course. A cheating scandal erupted, with Oracle ultimately being docked two races and losing a key crew member as punishment for illegal boat modifications in a preliminary series.
 
In San Francisco, many locals bristled at city support for what has often been derided as a rich man's yacht race.
 
Controversies aside, Oracle seemed to have a competitive  edge early on, with the home-team advantage and enough money to hire top sailors and build two equally matched boats to train against one another. Its team was distinctly international, with New Zealander Russel Coutts, who led the Kiwis to Cup victory in 1995 and 2000, serving as CEO and Spithill as the skipper.
 
Only one American was among the Oracle crew at the finish.
 
When only three challengers proved willing to take on the cost and complexity of the 72-foot carbon fiber yachts, Oracle's chances looked even better although it faced criticism that the dearth of competitors had made hosting the event a bad financial deal for San Francisco.
 
But the New Zealenders, led by a 56-year-old managing director, Grant Dalton, who doubled as a workhorse on-board grinder during races, proved ingenious in developing their boat, particularly in pioneering the use of hydrofoils that lift both hulls almost entirely out of the water to reduce drag.
 
Skipper Dean Barker steered nearly flawless races through most of the competition as New Zealand first crushed the Italian team, Luna Rossa, in the challenger series, and then dominated Oracle in the early races of the Cup finals.
 
But now the America's Cup, with its rich history of dueling tycoons, gamesmanship and cutting-edge boat technology, appears firmly headed in Ellison's innovative direction. Not since Australia ended the United States' 132-year-long grip on the oldest trophy in sports in 1983 has the competition taken such a sharp turn.


Senate begins consideration
of bill to avoid shutdown


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. Senate has voted unanimously to begin formal consideration of a bill to keep the federal government running beyond the end of the month. President Barack Obama’s signature health care law remains at the center of a partisan battle over funding, and time is running out for a politically divided Congress to pass a unified bill before a threatened shutdown begins Oct. 1.

The Senate has started debate on a bill passed by the Republican-led House of Representatives last week that extends federal spending authority but defunds the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. The Democratic-controlled Senate is expected to restore Obamacare funding in coming days.

Majority Leader Harry Reid urged swift action. “We have a lot to do, and we should get there as quickly as we can. Every hour that we delay here is an hour closer to shutting down the government.”

The Senate acted after a marathon speech by Republican Sen. Ted Cruz. For nearly 22 hours, Cruz urged colleagues to block funding of the law.

“Small businesses are crying out that Obamacare is killing them, and unfortunately the United States Senate is not hearing their cries. For the millions of Americans who are facing skyrocketing health insurance premiums and the reality or the risk of losing their health insurance, the United States Senate is not hearing their cry,” he said.

Cruz voted with all other senators to begin debate. The seeming contradiction of pursuing a stalling tactic while voting to advance the legislative process can be explained by the fact that Cruz is expected to oppose proceeding to a final vote on a spending bill days from now.

Cruz’ stamina and oratory did not impress Reid.

“It has been interesting to watch. But for lack of a better way of describing this, it has been a big waste of time,” said Reid of the speech.

And Cruz’ effort was rejected by some of his Republican colleagues. Sen. John McCain said voters spoke on Obamacare last year. “They spoke much to my dismay, but they spoke. And they reelected the president of the United States,” he said.

Another Republican, Sen. Dan Coats, said the fight to defund Obamacare is misguided.

“Shutting down the government will not stop Obamacare. We do not have the votes to defeat it.”

Democrats were happy to join in the criticism, among them Sen. Charles Schumer, who said, “Debate Obamacare all you want. But please do not threaten to shut down the government because you cannot get your way.”

The Senate is expected to pass a funding bill by Sunday, one day before federal spending authority expires. Then, focus will shift back to the House of Representatives, where many Republicans remain committed to defunding Obamacare. A limited government shutdown will be averted only if both houses pass an identical spending bill.

The White House continues to defend Obamacare. Spokesman Jay Carney hailed a report showing that Americans in many states will have multiple low-cost health insurance plans to choose from when major components of the law are implemented next month.


Vinyl records are making
a surprising comeback


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A technology thought to be obsolete only 10 years ago is making a surprising comeback.  Like the fountain pen and the film camera, the vinyl phonograph record was thought to be a thing of the past.  But not so, says Steve Gritzan, who owns a store called Iris Records in Jersey City, New Jersey and runs seven record shows across the eastern United States.

“It's a glorious time for people who like records,” he said.
 
There are numbers to back him up on that.  According to Digital Music News, it’s projected that 5.8 million vinyl records will be sold in the United States this year.  That’s up from one million in 2007.  It’s still a small segment of the music business. According to Billboard magazine, 2 percent of all the albums sold today are on vinyl. But while the sales of CDs are falling, sales of vinyl records are up 33 percent this year.

​“Everybody releases on vinyl,” Gritzan said.  “All the new indie rock groups, whether it's Bell & Sebastian, whether it's the Hold Steady, whether it's Foxygen, whether it's Washed Out.  All these groups are hot, new and young.  They release their work on vinyl and they also include a free download.”
 
And that’s in addition to artists who reach an older crowd who you might expect to be releasing their music on vinyl.
 
“When Paul Simon puts out a new record, he puts out a record,” said Gritzan. “There are not enough pressing plants to produce the amount of records that are desired.”
 
Companies like Gotta Groove Records, which started in 2009, are stepping in to help fill the gap.

“It certainly is not just us that's seeing the explosive growth,” said Matt Early, the company’s vice president for sales and marketing. “This is a time in history where the past is coming full circle.”
 
Gotta Groove founder Vince Slusarz was a lawyer at a plastics company.  He’d read about the growing popularity of vinyl records but it wasn’t until the trend literally hit home that he was moved to act.
 
“I believe it was his daughter who got a turntable for a gift,” Early said. She "was listening to records quite a bit more, and I think that really made an impression on Vince that, ‘Hey, this is real, young people are buying records and so this is something I should pay attention to.’”

Gotta Groove works mostly for small bands that put out their own records and sell them on tour. The bulk of the business is geared toward a younger audience.  College students are, once again, reading liner notes, appreciating album artwork and grabbing up their parents’ old, unused turn-tables to return to the days of getting up at the end of the record and turning it over.
 
According to Early, that kind of tangible experience is worth the extra money to younger people today.
 
“Combining those factors, it just kind of gives a perceived value that spending $20 to 25 on a record feels like it's worth it vs. spending that same amount of money on a file that you really can't touch or feel,” he said.



Real estate-related services (paid category)

Project completion specialists
Casa del pacifico logo
Pacifica living
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:

                      • Building completion services
                      • Interior design & decoration
                      • Custom furniture design & manufacturing.

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. We customize to suit each client’s personal taste, lifestyle and budget.
Serving region for 10 years.
We regularly exceed client expectations. We guarantee it.
Email: info@casadelpacifico.com
Cell phone: (506) - 8707-8008
Office phone: (506) - 2288-5644
Web: www.casadelpacifico.com
8070-2/14/13


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 2228-5961 or 8339-2112. www.costaricarealtyone.com
8091-12/11/13

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.
7949-11/15/13

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 www.moranlakearenal.com
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
Email: moranrealestate@gmail.com
Moran logo
7922-10/15/13



Costa Rica,

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





Visit our Web Site:
 www.greciarealestate.com




English: (Cristian Arce)
(506) 8309-0173  
English:  (Luis Arce)
(506) 7100-8489  
 Español: (Luis G. Jiménez)
  (506) 8707-4016  
Grecia 794
This is the BIGGEST DEAL of the month now at $850.000: HERE!
30,000 square meters of land and 750 square-meters of construction.
Grecia 803
5,000 square meters of land and 175 square-meters of construction. HERE!
Grecia
2,000 square meters of land and 200 square-meters of construction.  HERE!
  Send us your request to our email: info@greciarealestate.com
8068-11/9/13

Real estate for sale (paid category)


sunset view
FREE FULL-DAY TOUR and property viewing – San Ramón! 
Come visit us in San Ramón and not only will we show you some great properties but we’ll also give you a FREE day-long tour of this terrific town with a relocation expert who has lived here for many years. Since 2006, CRC has been the area’s leading creator of socially-responsible communities for foreign retirees/investors and locals. “Easy access” to San Ramón does not mean living many miles outside of town, but less than 2 miles from everything you’ll need. Live near town but in an area that only feels a world away. None of our competitors have built a school, donated a water well and completed numerous projects for the community. A few stunning, direct ocean-view home sites of 1.25 acres to nearly 4 acres from only $55,000 remain in one of San Ramón’s most desirable residential communities. Please visit us at www.crcommunities.com or email us at CRCInformation@gmail.com to request a property showing AND your free full-day tour. Overnight accommodations can be arranged. Limited availability so please contact us today referencing “Free Tour” in your email: CRCInformation@gmail.com
8080-10/6/13

Pacific Estates

Pacific Estates is divided into three distinct sections called Pacific Landings, Pacific Hills and Pacific Acres. Pacific Landings includes unique 2 & 3 bedroom homes incorporating pole house construction, cathedral ceilings, balconies on both the front and back of the house and eco-friendly elements. The homes also include granite counter tops, state-of-the-art stainless steel kitchen appliances, washer & dryer hook ups, internet connectivity and zone controlled A/C. These homes feature 1,290 square feet under A/C space and 1,537 square feet under A/C space with an optional Loft. To learn more about Pacific Estates, schedule a No Obligation Free Virtual Tour today by clicking here!
8087-10/18/13

Samara church and lot
Commercial lot with great visibility in heart of Playa Sámara commercial district. Located alongside town's largest church, bank, hardware store/lumber yard, mini shopping plaza, and Pali (Sámara's largest supermarket). This lot has a large elevated building platform shaded with mature treees. All this makes for many commercial options.  One block from stunning "blue flag" beach. This is a perfect location for a eco/boutique hotel, restaurant/catering, apartments, or condominium. All utilities to this property. Lot size 1,414m2. Price 325K. Email: mwk350@yahoo.com
8082-10/9/13

Nicoya
                                views
Maui, 50 years ago!
One acre with all services located on the Nicoya Peninsula at about 2,400 feet below cloud level with the most intriguing panoramic views to the picturesque gulf, mountains and valleys, as well as sunset over the Pacific. 60,000 USD, axelspecial@gmail.com    Cell 8916-5550.
8061-xxxxx

Five bedroom home
Five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths plus guest house
Price reduced $100,000 for quick sale. Features include out door BBQ, swimming pool, plus on the beach. The home is completely furnished with U.S. products. Each room is individually air conditioned.  Hot water in bathrooms, kitchen and laundry room.  Fully furnished. Includes TV’s, refrigerator/freezer, dish washer, microwave, electric stove/oven, washer & dryer and many “as seen on TV” appliances.  To see more, go to YouTube
http://www.youtube.com/user/CasaDelSolCostaRica
Asking  $250,000.    Call Gary 8784-2945 or email combrokers@aol.com
88059-xxxx

humming bird nest

Bed & Breakfast for sale and personal home with 2 houses on property of 3/4 acre (3,030 m2) and buildings w/verandas & carport approximately 350 m2. One house at entrance is central to village w/gated parking lot and a 3-bedroom house for rental or employees/family w/carport/yard/gardens. A 50-meter sendero winds to the top among lush gardens where the main house is situated w/2 buildings attached by verandas & stairway to second floor.  There are 2 bedrooms, sala, 4 baths, large kitchen, laundry rooms, work bodega, storage bodega and hot tub on veranda w/tiled shower room.  Home is surrounded by tropical gardens, views of Arenal Volcano, panoramic views of Lake Arenal, private w/school owned property on one side, pasture land on back side and connecting entry gate on other side to Cabinas El Castillo & Fusion Restaurant.  A bird watcher's paradise w/hummingbirds, Montezuma, toucans, butterflies and visits from howler monkeys.  The B&B is listed four consecutive editions of Lonely Planet and the first established B&B in this area.  Photos can be viewed on the Web site: www.hummingbirdnestbb.com.  Make your dream come true with a slice of paradise in a quiet, private setting. Call Ellen Neely at  8835-8711.  Email: nidocolibri@hotmail.com
8058-11/15/13

Naranjo views

NARANJO VIEW PROPERTY READY TO BUILD: ALL PERMISSIONS

4254 msq. 1.2 acres - $59,000.00
• 10 minutes to the autopista and Naranjo centro
• Tranquil and Quiet
• Landscaped with fruit trees and flowering plants, and coffee#
• Incredible views - The Central Valley and nature reserve
• Close to public transportation - paved main road
• Building pad prepared and soil tested
• Survey/topo
• All services in place and underground - water/electricity/phone
Email monicacal@mac.com
8034-8/19/13

Guiones retreat
SURFERS PARADISE on PLAYA GUIONES, NOSARA
Approximately half acre on the beach with private path to the surf. Very private three-home complex with pool, spacious patios with two wet bars, barbeque and yoga area. Featuring a three-bedroom ranch style home plus a two story Mexican villa style home with two master suites, large kitchen and living area with ocean views and breezes upstairs and a garden apartment downstairs with separate entrance. A caretaker's or teenager's cottage and lots of space for expansion. PRICED FOR QUICK SALE: $899,000.  Call 506 8867-8883 or heidebob2@gmail.com
8027-1/12/14

Beautiful fully renovated house in Bello Horizonte, Escazu, 446 sq. meters. Four bedrooms; four baths. Price includes all furniture and fixtures - ready to move in! Light, bright and airy....$550,000 USD. Telephone 2288.6451. More details HERE!
8010-7/28/13

Flamingo
                            view
Condo for sale in Flamingo

Ocean view 3-bedroom, 3 1/2-bathroom condo. Designer furnished 1,800 square feet, gated community. Only six units. Huge pool and balcony, pet friendly, parking, walking distance to Flamingo beach, banks, grocery store, farmacia, etc. New building. $349,000 asking. Ask for photos. 8705-0056. or 1-800-536-2322.
7986-8/6/13

Guaancaate condos
Little Dreams La Colina Magnolias

Great Guanacaste Beach Condos Available

$28,500 - Little Dreams - Ocotal beach studio condo, furnished upper floor condo in great complex just 1 mile from Ocotal beach, 2 miles from Coco beach, great price for this complex.
$70,000 - La Colina - another Ocotal beach 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo, 80 m2 and fully furnished with upgraded kitchen, complex has Infinity pool, mountain views.

$75,000 Magnolias 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath townhome just 1 minute's walk from Coco beach and the 2 beach clubs in Coco. Nicely furnished, walk to town, 67 m2, perfect location.
Find out more information on these and other condos at my website WendyLovesCostaRica.com. All 3 of these condos are about 35 minutes away from Liberia Intl. airport, no need to drive a long way to get to your condo.  Call for more information, 1-415-670-9382 or 011-506-826-1211. Or email Wendy@WendyLovesCostaRica.com.
7971-6/23/13

NOW REDUCED TO $680,000
ALAJUELA – PRIVATE COMPOUND OF 4 HOMES - $850,000 TURNKEY
Spectacular view property on a ridge near Alajuela.  Large home and 3 rental homes totaling 7,300 square feet (678 square meters) live-in construction.  Property area is 3,376 square meters (0.83 acres) including a vacant lot for expansion options.  In total there are 10 bedrooms, each with an ensuite bath.  Property has pool, rancho, mirador, courtyard and covered parking.  Homes have romantic fireplaces, built-ins, storage, other luxury features.  Turnkey sale includes all appliances, furniture, fixtures, equipment.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:
7967-7/17/13

Nicoya views
Property with ocean and gulf view for sale
Tranquil million dollar view, 5,000-sq.meter property with 3/2 home built to American standards, artistically designed and decorated, 16-foot ceilings of mango and tamarindo, appliances, plunge pool, rancho, caretaker apartment, workshop, covered parking, views of Gulf of Nicoya and ocean, in countryside near San José to Caldera highway. Near the lovely town of Esparza. Can provide extra income from bed and breakfast room rental and stellar Tripadvisor reviews. www.oasisbytheseabandb.com $180,000 506-8869-9274.
7882-4/15/13

For Sale By Owner
1 lot (1.5 acres)  at SIBU (8 lots total) amongst 50 acres of protected jungle gardens with sunset ocean views of Playa Nosara. Underground electric and water.13 minutes from Playa Guiones. Gated. In house financing available. Home of SIBU Sanctuary. jungalow@gmail.com.
7845-8/18/13

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Business for sale or lease (paid category)7115-12/16/11
A successful, local, long-running business for sale.
In the nine years of operation, this company has grown to cover the entire Southern Pacific Zone, and opened the door to further penetration in San Jose,  Manuel Antonio and Osa Peninsula areas.  And it is the only one of its kind with no comparable competition. With the extensive ground-work that has already been achieved, the business is now poised to expand into a new level of success. Operating since 2005, the owner retiring to another Latin American country. It is now time to turn the business over to a new owner who could expand it to  even greater success.  Details on the business, its history, a strategic analysis of its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, as well as a Pro-Forma Income Statement from 2008 through to 2013 are available upon request to aha_jm@yahoo.com
8081-10/9/13

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

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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday,  Sept. 26, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 191
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Four Latin countries join
in Pacific Alliance pact


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The presidents of Colombia, Peru and Chile, and Mexico's minister of economy agreed on Wednesday to liberalize 92 percent of their countries' goods and services as part of the nascent regional economic integration bloc, The Pacific Alliance.
 
“We have just reached an agreement to liberalize trade between the four countries for 92 percent of the goods, and we are going to reach 99 percent in three to seven years,” Chilean President Sebastian Pinera told business representatives attending the first Pacific Alliance Summit.
 
Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Chile are on the path of free trade and consolidation to strengthen their economies and create a more seamless and easier environment to do business.
 
The economic bloc, created less than three years ago, is the world's seventh-largest recipient of foreign direct investment, attracting $71 billion in 2012.
 
These four countries, major allies of the United States in Latin America, were disappointed by U.S. President Barack Obama's shortcoming in not mentioning the region in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly Tuesday.
 
“I was a bit sad yesterday that President Obama did not mention Latin America, not one single time,” Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos told an audience attending The Pacific Alliance business summit.
 
“He mentioned the Middle East. He mentioned China. But not one single country in Latin America was mentioned in his speech. The strategy for the United States lies south of Rio Grande. Businessmen know where the strategic opportunities are,” Santos added.
 
The economic bloc has investment potential for infrastructure projects that amount to almost $56 billion.
 
“We are advancing in many other areas such as infrastructure integration, customs integration, capital markets and energy,” Pinera said.
 
One example of the integration has been consolidation of embassies and commercial offices abroad.
 
“We already have four embassies under one roof in Ghana,” Mexican Economy Minister Idelfonso Guajardo said. He added that citizens of the economic bloc do not need tourist visas, so the number of Peruvian, Colombian and Chilean visitors to his country has increased.
 
Peruvian President Ollanta Humala said that although the Pacific Alliance is an economic bloc, the group created a scholarship fund so their citizens can study in any of the four countries. The alliance will also work to improve university accreditation.
 
The Pacific Alliance has 210 million people, the majority of them young, and their combined economies make 35 percent of Latin America gross domestic product.
 
“One country can go fast, but together can advance faster and better,” Humala said.

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From Page 7:

Report: Half of Latin America uses Web

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

This is the first year that half of Latin American residents have had regular access to the Internet.

That was the conclusion of a report by eMarketer, a firm that tracks advertising and Internet penetration.

The report was done in collaboration with Starcom MediaVest Group. It said that the number of web users in Latin America will rise 13.0 percent this year, with growth rates tapering through 2017, when just shy of two-thirds of the population will be online. Half, exactly 50 percent, of Latin America's  299.5 million persons, will use the web at least monthly this year, according to the report.

"The Global Media Intelligence Report is eMarketer’s largest and most comprehensive snapshot of the state of media usage and spending globally." the firm said. "The report contains more than 700 charts collected from over 150 global research sources, which SMG helped identify and gather for local and core global markets, in addition to benchmarks, analysis and context provided by eMarketer."

Latin Internet users are heavy into social media, said the report. More than seven in 10 will use social networks at least monthly, the firm reported.

Until now, low digital penetration has reduced what advertisers are prepared to spend on digital media, it added. The firm estimated Latin American digital ad spending at $4.11 billion, up from $1.22 billion in 2008. The report is HERE!