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Residencias Los Jardines - Life & Times

ISSUE #209: Oct 6 - 11, 2008

Perico Recaptured & Pozos in Transition

Perico Recaptured & Pozos in Transition

» NOTES

When I started Residencias Los Jardines, I started writing a weekly news letter —determined to tell all the good, bad, and the ugly. I knew some readers would be interested in the construction process. I expected others might be interested in the lifestyle of two people who had decided to live outside the box. For others, the adventures of lita, the parrot and the cat took on an entertainment saga all its own.

Residencias Los Jardines is finished. We periodically have resales and rental availability. Some readers may be interested in this information.

More and more, the content will be dominated by events of our new project, "El Dorado" for short. While the future is always uncertain, I again aim to tell it like it happens —the good, the bad, and the ugly, and that is what follows.

In an effort to make the format more interesting and visually appealing and to field inquiries re. El Dorado, the news letter is now being distributed by Jan Kozak, Marketing Manager, Hacienda El Dorado. I will remain the author.

»MARKETING, WEBSITE & SALES

Sales: None this week but we continue to have several inquires each week.

Billboards:  We will not be renewing our four billboards along the autopista (highway). We've gotten the bang for this $30,000 nut so will let the space go for at least now. When we have permits and know when construction will start, we may re-visit this decision.

Note: The world financial torture and carnage has continued this week. We just keep our head down and work on those things we need to accomplish to be in a position to move forward. Hopefully, the time will be right when we are ready. Had we committed to financing earlier, I doubt that it would be honored. It is my understanding that four (4) projects under construction shut down this week in Jaco alone because the committed financing disappeared. About a month ago,  various notices / advertisements appeared saying that Stewart Title and Lehman Bros. had signed on to finance Reserva Conchal purchasers. (Click here to read a related article published here on July 13, 2008). Shortly thereaf, Lehman Bros. disappeared in a sea of red ink.  We will have to be very chosy because we don't want nor do we want our purchsers to become casulaties.

» CONSTRUCTION LOG

Permit Applications: SETENA--D1--we wait and that will probably be the story until the end of January. 

Water: Our consultant has met with AyA to further the conversation re. water and is now in the process of working with our engineer and lawyer on a draft proposal.  A further meeting with AyA is scheduled for early next week.

Sick Tree....It's still struggling....

Chain Link Fence: We've asked the consultant to work with the structural engineer to develop a design for spanning the river.  It appears that for us, anyway, there are some design restrictions.  I've never heard of this nor have I ever seen what has been described to me. If I sound a bit quizzical at this, you're reading it correctly. The consultant is supposed to deliver a drawing to the structural engineer on Saturday.

» RESIDENCIAS LOS JARDINES

Website Upgrade / Marketing: Photos of Residencias Los Jardines, the Santa Ana area and some of the houses are available on line at:

http://picasaweb.google.com/gardenresidencesresort
 
All pictures have now been changed to current images.

Drainage System: No heavy rains yet to test under actual conditions.

Kirebe: The Municipalidad of Santa Ana (Muni) did an on-site inspection this week three weeks after we filed our "denuncia".  I doubt that this would have happened had we not persisted. They issued an order to Kirebe to comply;  compliance will supposedly fix our situation.  What will that  "order" actually accomplish?  Don't know.  We'll see.

VOIP Phones: We had the technician in on Monday. He concluded, as we suspected, that the problem does not emmanate from here.  He also confirmed that many of his clients were having the same problem.  We have now upgraded our bandwidth to the maximum.  There has been no change in our VOIP / Vonage or Blackjack phones -- SKYPE phone seem to work o.k.; they seem to use a different technology which the provider can't scramble because that same bandwidth carries other data as well. Our VOIP phone service usually works before 8am--after that, forget it. In fact, our whole Internet service has been extremely slow  this week and having the maximum band width has not changed anything. We will cancel the upgrade since it is only an "upgraded" price.....  

Cable TV:  AMNET is moving into the area to compete with CableTica. We are exploring connections with them.

Pozos and Transition--News Articles:  We have translated two recent articles which appeared in La Nacion about development in the Santa Ana area, more specifically about Pozos de Santa Ana. They are interesting reads and can be read on our website..One article talks about the traffic gridlock resulting from the development and the plan to widen the road connecting Santa Ana with the airport to 7 lanes. The other article talks about all the new commercial development over the past several years. It doesn't talk about the residential development.  We are now only missing Burger King from the list of fast food restaurants.  Regardless, you can still find horses tethered outside the local bar in Pozos and cows are still used as lawn mowers on vacant lots.  The "rural" has not completely disappeared from Pozos but it is endangered!

October 09, 2008
Construction Saturates the Santa Ana-Belen Corridor
(La Nacion) The Santa Ana-Belen corridor, also known as the Lindora "Platinum" Mile, is becoming saturated with shopping malls, office buildings and restaurants. Several projects are awaiting the issuance of construction permits, while others are expanding.
Read

October 09, 2008
Santa Ana-Belen Corridor to be Expanded to Seven Lanes
(La Nacion) The two-lane road, which connects Santa Ana with Río Segundo de Alajuela, is to be expanded to six lanes (three in each direction) plus a turning lane in the middle to enable access to local businesses. According to William Matamoros, Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Public Transportation in charge of awarding concessions for public works, this will boost traffic in the area by 60%, and simultaneously free up a road that is currently considered impassable during rush hours.
Read

In addition to construction along the "Platinum Mile" in Pozos, construction is in full swing on the multiuse project near CIMA and three new office buildings across the autopista from that development.  Kirebe continues to progress on their two project to the east of us and the three story office building on the corner of our street is advancing and should be completely finished in a month.

Units for Sale/Lease:

Residencia Los Jardines Site Plan

Unit #107 - For Sale

Total Area (Sq Ft): 1716
Total area (Sq M): 158
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 2.5
Floor(s): 2 Story
Type: Detached
Furnished: Yes
 
This 1,716 sf. (plus parking for one car) two story, detached house, with three terraces, two bedrooms (one on each floor) and upstairs master suite is a beautiful home. This home consists of two VERY large bedrooms (one on each floor) with en-suite bathrooms and a powder room, each with large closets with extensive built-ins for personal organization. The vaulted living room and ground floor bedroom ceilings as well as the master bedroom on the 2nd floor, provide a feeling of grandeur while allowing the warmer air to rise and exit through the ceiling ventilating system. There are three TVs (one in each bedroom and one in the living room.) This is a beautiful home. There is a rough-in for a dishwasher in the kitchen area.







Read More

Unit #120 - For Sale

Total Area (Sq Ft):1312
Total area (Sq M):122
Bedrooms:2
Bathrooms:2
Floor(s):1 Story
Type:Semi-Detached
Furnished:Yes

This 1,312 sf single floor home includes a 300 sf front terrace plus parking for one car. It is an end unit and therefore attached on only one side providing ample lighting and views. The 6 inch cement demising (common) wall prevents sound transfer. This is a very nicely furnished and accented home.






Read More

Unit #108 - Leased/For Sale

Total Area (Sq Ft):1716
Total area (Sq M):158
Bedrooms:2
Bathrooms:2.5
Floor(s):2 Story
Type:Detached
Furnished:Yes

This 1,716 sf. (plus parking space for one car) two storey, detached house, with two terraces, two bedrooms (one on each floor) and an upstairs master suite is a beautiful home.

This home consists of two VERY large bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms (one on each floor) and a powder room each with closets with extensive built-ins for personal organization. The vaulted living room and ground floor bedroom ceilings as well as the master bedroom on the 2nd floor provide a feeling of grandeur while allowing the warmer air to rise and exit through the ceiling ventilating system.






Read More



» NEWS FROM COSTA RICA

If your browser does not support the hyperlinks below, you can view the COSTA RICA NEWS section on our website from the following URL:

» http://www.eldoradocostarica.com/English/News/index.php

October 09, 2008
Big Companies on Prowl for Bilingual Workers in Costa Rica
(The Tico Times) About 15 high-powered companies say they're looking to hire 2,000 English-speaking employees at a bilingual job fair that begins today and ends Saturday in San José.
Read

October 09, 2008
Construction Saturates the Santa Ana-Belen Corridor
(La Nacion) The Santa Ana-Belen corridor, also known as the Lindora “Platinum” Mile, is becoming saturated with shopping malls, office buildings and restaurants. Several projects are awaiting the issuance of construction permits, while others are expanding.
Read

October 09, 2008
Santa Ana-Belen Corridor to be Expanded to Seven Lanes
(La Nacion) The two-lane road, which connects Santa Ana with Río Segundo de Alajuela, is to be expanded to six lanes (three in each direction) plus a turning lane in the middle to enable access to local businesses. According to William Matamoros, Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Public Transportation in charge of awarding concessions for public works, this will boost traffic in the area by 60%, and simultaneously free up a road that is currently considered impassable during rush hours.
Read

October 07, 2008
Costa Rica hopes to have its ‘Latin American Idol’
(Infocom) — Massive support by Costa Ricans, and many others throughout Latin American, via text-message voting have catapulted local singer Maria Jose Castillo to the finals of the reality show “Latin American Idol,” produced by Sony Entertainment Television — and modeled after the hugely popular American Idol program in the United States.
Read

October 07, 2008
Stocks close higher in Panama, lower in Costa Rica, flat in El Salvador
PANAMA CITY (PNA/Xinhua)— Three Central America's major stock markets ended mixed on Monday, with higher in Panama, lower in Costa Rica, and flat in El Salvador.
Read

October 07, 2008
Hilton to increase its Central/Latin American portfolio
Hilton Hotels Corporation has announced expansion plans to quadruple its presence in the Caribbean and Latin America by adding 150 new hotels to the portfolio over the next five years.
Read

October 07, 2008
Many Costa Rica Citizens Unemployed or Underpaid
(Costa Rica Pages) Though the Costa Rica job market may appear to be strong — high levels of education and English fluency have attracted many international companies and nearshore outsourcing opportunities — the reality is that many Costa Ricans are either unemployed or underpaid. Even worse, many of the struggling workers are young, typically under 25, who have recently graduated from long and arduous 5 or 6-year degrees.
Read

October 06, 2008
Costa Rica Nabs Another Alleged Fraudster Wanted by FBI
(The Tico Times) Police in the central Pacific town of Manuel Antonio last week arrested a U.S. citizen wanted for theft by the FBI.
Read

October 06, 2008
Costa Rica Inflation Surge Worst in 10 years
(The Tico Times) Prices surged 15.77 percent over the past 12 months, the highest year-over-year increase since 1998, according to a report by the Statistics and Census Institute (INEC).
Read

» OUR LIVES

Weather: October is living up to it's reputation as being very wet.

Pericos:  One of the two little parrots Lita so loves, somehow got out of the cage and flew off--fortunately Lita was there to hear and feel the flutter of wings. She grabbed the one remaining one, enlisted the help of the neighbor lady and went looking for a green bird in green trees -- and she being sight challenged, I didn't see the outcome of this effort as being highly probable.  I got called by Paul to start his now dead-in-the-water car.  I left not wanting to see or hear the grief and anger that was going to result.  When I returned, both pericos were now caged.  I'm still sketchy on how this happened but it seems the guard across the street was somehow instrumental.  Wow!!!!!

Tex-Mex Restaurant, Santa Ana:  It's been under new management for the past couple months.  We had high hopes that it might improve. I had nachos there on Friday for lunch. They were the same awful concoction that I had a Yakk's  4 months ago and vowed never to return.  It's disappointing that a place with so much promise just can't get it together;  they (who ever that is and there seems to be some mystery as to who is running the place) don't get it. The future doesn't look promising for this restaurant.

New Highway Construction: The widening of the autopista between San Jose and Santa Ana is in full swing. There is lots of equipment, lots of traffic delays, lane reductions, accidents, etc.

Crime:  There are lots of reports of robberies, muggings, shootings, etc. in CR media and bulletin boards.  While I'm  not in a position to question it, I can say that of all the men, women, kids, singles, and couples living at Los Jardines we have hand only one unfortunate experience.  That singular exception was the break-in to a rental car while at the beach where personal belongings were left in plain sight.  So in about 120 person years of living in CR, RLJ has had only the one incidence. This is not to say that this recored will continue, but lets hope it does.  We have had some minor theft (bicycle, bicycle wheel) which seems to have come from unsavory associates of one resident going through tough times. 

Brian, Lita, Hugo, irreverent Vicka, the pigeon toed parrot, and the newbies — Chico and Chica.

  

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