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Plan B – The positive power after you bought property in Costa Rica.

by: Jogi – Jürgen Gerner, Real Estate Broker

First, imagine you own a piece of paradise here at the pacific coast of Costa Rica. Relaxed living, wonderful climate with lots of sun, nice and friendly people, great food and a fantastic lifestyle. You can use your property, enjoy it with your family, invite friends, rent it, do a business, consider it as an investment and so on, the options are endless. Secondly, almost nobody realizes that there is another important factor which is very powerful. Let’s call it Plan B. It’s always good to have a Plan B, because it gives you the power to move on, the energy for a positive outlook and the piece of mind to keep cool. In the mid 90’s I had the opportunity to discover this positive experience by myself. Some friends of mine and my wife and me bought together a small farm close to Tamarindo beach to be developed and segregated within our little group. It was unbelievable, without knowing exactly what will come next, it felt great to have this Plan B option. My colleagues and my boss at work asked me what is going on and why I’m so happy. Now and more than 20 years later I’m still so glad what we did. I recommend you to give it a try, we have some wonderful options for you, it’s easy, there is nothing to loose, only to win win win.

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The driving experience to San José and around Liberia got significantly better

by: Federico Fernandez, Real Estate Consultant

The completely redone tract of the Inter-American highway consisting of 50.5 km (31.6 miles) is now ready and open. This is the road between the cities of Liberia and Cañas. Costa Rica’s national route N°1 is part of the Pan-american Highway, a route with about 19,000 miles, that basically crosses the continent from north to south.
Liberia is the main city in the province of Guanacaste. In it, the closest international airport is located. Within an hour drive, for us here at Tamarindo, the city of Liberia is on the way to the main northern border crossing with the neighboring country of Nicaragua (Peñas Blancas). Now that this new road down south of Liberia is open, it makes it an attractive alternative for us to drive to the central valley and other sites of interest along the route.
This is said to be the most modern road in the country at this point. USD$135 million where invested in building the road including 36 bridges (26 brand new and 10 redone). Completely built in concrete, with four lanes, it has eighteen four lane bridges along the original trail that used to be a two lane asphalt road with bridges that in some cases were over 50 years old. Elevated bridges pass along the exits to the three main urban areas of Liberia, Bagaces and Cañas. For safety there is a barrier in the middle all along the route, twelve pedestrian bridges where built, there are also twelve turnarounds, bicycle lanes in populated areas, sidewalks, and bus stops with bays. It is very pleasant to ride along it.
Underground and aerial passages for wildlife were included in specific areas where animals are known to be present and tend to cross the road. Considering environmental impact, it is planned to plant twenty-four thousand trees in sites within nearby national parks of Santa Rosa and Guanacaste and along the road. This is more than twice the trees that were removed to build the road.
It is planned to continue the improvement of National Route N°1 with these characteristics down south. The sections between Cañas and Limonal and Limonal and Barranca that total 70 km (43,75 miles) will be next. These projects are under the process of design and contract. The funds required area already secured and come from an international loan.

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Styling your tropical dream home!

by: Karen Fabre, Real Estate Consultant

About 25 years ago, Tamarindo was still a quiet coastal village, barely any foreign residents around.
Steadily, North Americans, Europeans and others alike started discovering Costa Rica’s beauty and the positive aspects of its way of life. And so, partly thanks to the steady and reliable waves and the opening of Costa Rica’s second international airport at Liberia, Tamarindo started booming. Retirees and investors, but increasingly also families with young children in search of a better quality of live, have found their way to the Tamarindo region and purchased property.
Naturally, many of these new home owners, not only want to take in the sunshine, palm trees, hours of fun in the ocean or the natural wonders. They also long for their new houses to feel like home again, looking for ways to not only furnish them, with furniture that withstands the tropical climate, but also decorate them in style, preferably the style that fits their taste. Of course Tamarindo did not offer the luxury of a furniture store, warehouse or design studio on every corner.

With a very limited furniture selection in the area in those early years, and Tamarindo being further away from the capital city, companies offering help with the purchase of furniture and appliances, and decoration services, started to rise. Pacific Home Furnishings, located in Liberia, offers “Home furnishing packages” based on a selection of furnishings available in Costa Rica or custom made furniture manufactured locally.
Other companies, such as Tropical House Interiors, with showroom in Cañafistula, focus on import of furniture from South East Asia, offering home furnishing packages with a style ranging from Natural Contemporary to Tropical Colonial.

As the demand is still growing, more recently, Tamarindo residents have also shown to be very tasteful and artistic. More contemporary and European design studios are popping up, and creative minds come up with elegant solutions for specific items not yet readily available in the area.

Wood from the Guanacaste tree is stylishly being given a new use by MuDesign, offering stools, tables and unique decorative wood pieces, that will give any home a sophisticated, contemporary reference to Costa Rica.
At GirlFish you can find fashionable LEPOUF bean bags in bright colors to add style and comfort to your pool side lounge experience.
Designs by Sven, lead by fashionista Sven Geniets, the current interior designer for boutique hotel Cala Luna, offers contemporary and chic total concept design of any interior and trendy make-overs. “City at the beach” is his trademark style!

So, before moving to Costa Rica, one question to answer is whether one would take the opportunity to declutter, sell all belongings, and set for a fresh home styling experience from scratch, or pack the complete household, ship it to Costa Rica and deal with local custom taxes and regulations (which is a separate story by itself). That is a question that only each person can answer for himself.

But knowing that several options for furnishing services in several styles and tastes, and for fashionable and trendy decoration and interior design have risen over the years and keep on rising, even in Tamarindo itself, may help one to make this decision and to fulfill that dream of a tropical, yet elegant and homey getaway.

 

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Construction is back to Tamarindo

by Mark Venegas, Real Estate Consultant

For various years, after 2008, the sale of lots to build on in Tamarindo was almost unheard of, as well as construction of new homes. This bringing the development of new homes or businesses to a standstill. Since then, in general, the market has been recovering with multiple Homes and Condos being sold, prices stabilizing, and the apparent need for new homes in Tamarindo growing more and more. With the quality inventory reduced like this many buyers were met with this reality, and for about the last three years something interesting has been happening, people are back to buying lots, and almost immediately submitting plans to obtain building permits. During this same time frame multiple lots have been purchased and there have been over 15 new homes built (a couple still under construction). There are also a number of lot owners awaiting building permits, so more new homes are coming.

It’s nice to see new projects developing here again. There are still some nice ocean view lots available, a couple beachfront, and others at short walks to the beach ready for you to build your tropical dream on. Give us a call and we’ll be happy to assist you in finding your piece of Tamarindo.

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Tamarindo Will Burst With Life

art pic
Tamarindo Art Wave is the first fine arts festival that will take place in our beloved and colorful seaside town.
June 16th -18th, three days in which Tamarindo will burst with life!
A unique opportunity to discover a wide range of artists and disciplines. Restaurants, hotels, shops, businesses and private homes will have the opportunity to host a national or international artist to create an art piece over the course of the event. ABC is proud to be able to participate by hosting an artist performing within our office. More info at: http://tamarindoartwave.com/

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Where to go if I need…?

Solarium

by Federico Fernandez, Real Estate Consultant.

Very frequently we see inquiries on Facebook, or people ask us for advice on where to go if such or such thing is needed. As a local resident, with children, I know a few places where to find a variety of goods and services in the area. In fact, nine years ago, I used to drive to San José very frequently to satisfy several needs. Lately such trips have not been necessary for my family. Taking a few hours to do a half day trip to Liberia could be enough to get hard to find items in Tamarindo.
Starting with the stores that are closer to town: if you need home appliances, or electronic equipment, the two largest nationwide appliance stores have locations in Villarreal, just outside of Tamarindo. These are Gollo and Monge. Coopeguanacaste, the only electricityGollo supplier in the area, also sells home appliances, tools, electric materials and garden equipment. They have a store in Huacas right at the crossing and are currently building a larger one just before this crossing. You can even pay your purchase in installments included in your monthly electric bill with Coopeguanacaste.

If you need more specialized electric equipment, from the Huacas crossing just drive one mile towards the airport. In a commercial center called Plaza Izarra you will find quite a variety at Suplidora. In there, Accesos Automáticos has everything related to automatic garage doors and another company sells PVC plumbing parts and processed wood pieces.
If you have not found what you needed in these fifteen-minute drive locations, you might need to go towards the city of Liberia. This would take you slightly more than one hour. Liberia is the largest city in Guanacaste. It has an international airport, hotels, local industries and is used as the base in the area by most, large, nation-wide companies.

In regards to automotive, seven car dealerships have facilities in Liberia. You can buy new cars, parts or get service at Nissan, Kia, Agencia NissanFord, Hyundai, Isuzu, Chevrolet, and Toyota. Dozens of car rental companies are based in Liberia and have hundreds of vehicles in their fleets scattered in their locations around the airport if you needed a temporary ride. Other large garages, and part dealers are present as well (Super Servicio, Auto Mecanix, La Guacamaya, etc). So you can take care of your vehicle´s maintenance with no trouble.
On the way to Liberia, 40 minutes from Tamarindo you will find on the left hand side, just beforeDo it Center the bridge over the Tempisque river, a big commercial warehouse and commercial center called ¨Do It Center¨. That is a huge hardware store. In that commercial center there is an interesting coffee roaster shop called Sun Burst. They have a large variety of coffee and will explain you all about it. I never fail to stop in there for a bag of whole bean vanilla scented coffee. Three banks have branches in there (BCR, BCT, Desyfin) and it is rare to find a line in them. Also, right behind that building, CIMA hospital has its local facilities.

Not far from there, in an older warehouse complex on the right hand side, Distribuidora Isleña has a store. They have a variety of wine, imported European beer, canned goods, and Italian cold meats. Farther north, right in front of the airport there is a modern warehouse complex called Solarium Logistic COceanic Foodsenter. It is worth it to visit there. On the first cluster of shops on the right, Oceanic Foods has a new shop. They offer a large selection of frozen and canned food. In there, you can buy everything from sushi, frozen seafood of all sorts both local and imported, frozen meats, etc. Farther into Solarium there is Carnes San Martin. They have the most tender meat cuts you will find, all imported from Nicaragua.

One of the largest furniture stores in the country has a showroom in Solarium. It is called La Artistica. If the piece of furniture you need is not exhibited in the store, but it is in their inventory, they can bring it for you. The last business I visit in Solarium is Datamax, an office supply vendor with very good prices.

Once you are in downtowCinemasn Liberia, in a large commercial center called Plaza Santa Rosa right at the city´s main crossing with the Panamerican road, you can buy clothing, there is a Radioshack, a large supermarket, other banks, etc. I frequently need to buy some toys or school supplies for my kids. Then the places to go are Toys Tienda de Juguetes and Librería Universal, the second one with a large store in Mall Plaza Liberia. Also, in that mall, there are Cinemas, so your needs for Plaza Santa Rosacity-like entertainment can be satisfied before you drive back home.
And that is basically the shopping tour I wanted to share with all of you without having to go too far.

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The Robert August Surf n’ Turf Charity Challenge April 15,16,17

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The Robert August Surf & Turf Charity Challenge is the major fundraiser of the year and provides most of the needs for CEPIA’s after school program, which provides sports, English classes, tutoring, technology, arts and fun to more than 1000 children. Children also participate in surf and swim competitions, day trips, tree planting, beach clean ups, recycling and more!
The event also serves the Tamarindo Life Guard program and offers day trips for the kids of the local orphanage.

This is a great opportunity for national and international exposure. Become a famous sponsor and support the unprivileged, at risk children in Guanacaste, Costa Rica at the same time!!

Don’t miss the opportunity to support CEPIA, registration and opening night, Friday April 15th at 5pm at El Vaquero Bar, next to Witch’s Rock Surf Camp.

More info:  https://www.facebook.com/RobertAugustEvent/?fref=ts
Or contact: cepia.surfandturf@gmail.com

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Finally, distributed generation in Costa Rica!

by: Mark Venegas, Real Estate Consultant

After a long wait the electric companies are expected to offer, starting April 7, 2016, the price structure for net metering in homes and businesses, which will allow consumers to save on their electric bills through distributed generation. This is a huge step in the right direction for distributed generation in Costa Rica, especially for those that have or want to install solar panels. This was announced on March 17 by the Public Services Regulatory Authority (ARESEP) and will allow consumers to connect and send electricity back into the national grid. The tariffs will range from around ₡12-28 per kilowatt hour of electricity that is sent back into the grid, depending on the power company. The power companies although have not yet announced what the cost will be to consumers of two-way meters, installation, inspection and other fees. This must be made public by April 7.
After arduous, and at times frustrating, negotiations between the Costa Rican Electricity Institute, solar providers and solar power lobbying group ACESOLAR, we will finally have the net metering pricing.

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Tamarindo keeps amazing!

by Karen Fabré, Real Estate Consultant

Once you think you have seen every corner of Tamarindo and its surroundings, a new discovery pops up. Tamarindo is known for its world class surf, its great restaurants and outgoing lifestyle. It offers something for everyone’s taste. It was recently enriched with an art gallery, and word says there will even be a movie theater in the future. The beach is wonderful for all ages, you can swim the open sea to Captain’s Island (Isla Capitán), kayak, practice stand up paddle, and of course surf and boogie board as much as you desire. Enjoy taking a guided nature tour of the Tamaindo Estuary to bird watch and see other wildlife, all within the Playa Grande national park (Parque Marino Las Baulas) where you’ll also view the howler monkeys roaming around in the trees. This will please any nature lover. Yoga can be practiced in many places and excellent massages are easy to find. What more diversion could one place offer?
Well, for those seeking tranquility and serenity, the hills behind the bustling town of Tamarindo offer another amazing experience: there you will find a labyrinth made completely of cacti, considered to be the largest labyrinth in the world and the only one built around 2 energy domes. It has a surface of 1 ha, that’s so big you can see it on Google earth! Not to be confused with a maze, where you can get lost and need to try to find your way out, a labyrinth offers one single pathway to follow to the center of the labyrinth and to the depth of oneself. Walking the 1.7 miles (3 km) of the labyrinth, in the middle of the dry tropical forest, accompanied by the sounds of the howler monkeys and the songs of tropical birds, is an unforgettable and very spiritual experience.
One more reason to choose Tamarindo as your final destination or the place to come and live a “pura vida” life!

More info about the labyrinth on: www.tamarindolabyrinth.com

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Easy to Open a Bank Account

bank acc

by: Mark Venegas, Real Estate Consultant

A while ago the Costa Rican government, in an effort to stop money laundering, implemented various restrictions, one was to make it difficult for foreigners to open a bank account here. Not until recently the only way for a foreigner, that does not yet have his/her residency card (DIMEX), to open a bank account with a local CR bank was to form a corporation (S.A.) and open an account under its name. Now, by an executive order from the Costa Rican Presidency, the “cuenta simplificada” was created, and the Banco de Costa Rica (BCR) is the first to announce this possibility. If you don’t have a BCR office close by go into the closest bank and ask if they are offering the cuenta simplificada yet, soon other banks will be offering it, all you will need is your Passport and some $s. Although the max limit of the account is only $1,000, this is great news and will be convenient for those foreigners that have recently bought, or are thinking of buying a property here. With this account they can pay bills, make transfers, use the ATM, etc. Once their residency process finishes, and they are given their DIMEX residency card, they can then go and adjust the status of their account. It’s a small step, but in the right direction, for the Costa Rican government to help “simplify” the transition of those foreigners looking to make Costa Rica their new home.