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New Construction

Lease / purchase

Phase 3: The construction of the remaining 11 residences.
See what's new: Garden Residences of Río Oro.

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Progress Report

January 22-27, 2007 // CONSTRUCTION LOG #120

Contact phone numbers

Internet Phone:
New York: 315-279-6711
Toronto: 416-907-5758 // 416-461-2203

Costa Rica:
Cell: 506-305-3965
Land: 506-282-4142 Ext. 101

NOTE: the New York and Toronto numbers are "local calls" for people in the area codes; calls from outside the area code will be billed at the normal rate from the caller's area code to either the "315" or the "416" area code.


NOTE: NOW THAT THIS DEVELOPMENT IS ESSENTIALLY FINISHED, THE LOG WILL FOCUS MORE ON THE RIO ORO DEVELOPMENT. IT WILL BE INFORMATIVE TO THOSE PLANNING ON BUILDING, THOSE LOOKING FOR A PLACE TO PURCHASE OR TO LEASE, AND FOR THOSE WONDERING WHAT EXPATS DO IN COSTA RICA AND THE LIFESTYLE OF TWO ORDINARY PEOPLE.

The STORY: Rio Oro inches ahead and birthdays.

CONSTRUCTION

Rio Oro Development: Visible progress -some of the roads were roughed in so be can better see how the lots will lay and most of the lot lines were located. We made a few more adjustments on the roadways and now think we have refined it about as much as we can at this stage. We've burned some of the dry piles of jungle debris and others we are gathering up into a dump site and will deal with it all later. Certainly it's nice to see the areas being cleared of debris. The same work will continue next week.

Paul and I have begun investigating an interim administration office and probable on site sales office. Our options are to buy and outfit either a 45' cargo trailer of a sea container. As of now, we are favoring the sea container. We'll fix it up good for the next several years.

We have a meeting on Tuesday with the Santa Ana city officials. They have been holding up our application for building a perimeter fence. Reason? They want to know what the specs are for the black water treatment plant. This is difficult to understand; we don't k now yet and we have not made an application of a residential development-only to build a fence... The stupidity of government officials is world wide and CR is part of the world.

Paul and I gathered some additional information from other developments. We still need more but this will help us round out our missing information. I'll be working on it.

Chris Howard, a local N. Am. here in the Central Valley, has a business "selling" Costa Rica. He provides information seminars to people looking to relocate to Costa Rica -health insurance, immigration process, banking, geography, culture, buying houses, leasing, etc. His sessions also includes showing people different types of developments. We've been on his list now for the past two tours; it's worked well for us and for him and for his clients. We will be working with him on Rio Oro as well as re-sales and leases of Los Jardines.

RESIDENCIAS LOS JARDINES

Satellite TV: Everyone except mine has worked flawlessly. Mine???? it's still a mystery. I can get a signal during the day but not at night. We've reprogrammed the box-it works on other people's but not mine. We are now thinking the signal or something other than the box is the culprit. To date, it remains another CR mystery. We gotten three additional boxes and three more people are happy viewers of DISH offerings.

Irrigation System: I've continued making above ground irrigation systems-they are simple, easy, inexpensive and work well for long narrow areas. We are virtually finished now and have probably about 40-50% of the grounds covered. This will free up the gardeners' time such that if I can teach them to do two things at once, they should have plenty of time for pruning, grass cutting, cleaning, etc. How did we do it? We got 1" thin walled plastic irrigation pipe, plugged the end, attached conversion kits to hoses, drilled mini holes in the 75' length and laid them around the houses and long narrow garden areas. Now that whole area can be irrigated by simply turning on the faucet.

Rentals:

Unit 121: Two story, 2 bedroom, 2 1/2 bathrooms including Jacuzzi, terrace facing east looking at the sunrise and the mountains. 1,650sf. Beautifully furnished - $1,600 mo.

Unit 123: A beautifully situated unit nicely furnished is available for lease - $1,650 mo. this two bedroom unit with 2nd. floor terrace overlooks the lighted garden and one swimming pool as well as the mountains.

Unit 126: One bedroom studio unit with full kitchen and terrace. Lots of built-ins and very well furnished. Approx. 400 sf plus 200 sf of outdoor terrace. Rate depends on length of lease but probably around $650-$750. It looks like we have a long term person for this unit.

Resales:

Unit 106B: 1 / 2 bedroom, two bathroom, two terraces (east and west) 1,250sf. Fully furnished - $150K.
Note: vendor owns another unit.

Unit 108: 2 floors, 2 bedrooms (one on each level), 2 1/2 bathrooms, Jacuzzi, walk-in vault, executive class furnishings including a 42" plasma TV, east facing terrace looking over the large pool and mountains and a ground floor back terrace for outside, private dining - $270K.

Unit 120: single floor, 1,300 sf, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, executive furnishings throughout, beautifully decorated - $190K.

Note: Same owner for both 108 and 120; the owner wants to sell one of the two units.

OUR LIVES

It was my 61st birthday on Wednesday; Lita never let's me forget it or spend it in the hammock. She had 35 people around the pool with a pot-luck dinner. The food was delicious -we had some really yummy salads, ribs, pork, curry, and lots and lots of cakes. Friends stayed with us so they didn't have to drive at night to their home 45 min. away. How she organizes and mobilizes everyone with her eyesight is short of amazing -sometimes it's chaotic, haphazard, and frustrating but... she deserves so much more credit than we give her -she doesn't let her eyesight stop her!!!

And I got some wonderful Scotch, cigars, cigar box, a "tuque" (Cdn. Stocking cap to remind me how fortunate I am not to need it), a toolbox full of German chocolates, and few misc. bottle of booze and a wonderful plant I've been wanting which has gorgeous trumpet shaped flowers.

...and I have yet to return a few phone calls from friends in the frozen north.

...and on Thursday, the resident 8 year old, Lilly, had a birthday -a few of her friends and us "olders" looking for a hotdog.

In our ill-fated effort to find a new restaurant, we learned that a number of us liked the lowly macaroni and cheese dish. We've had a Dutch version a week ago and last night I made a N. Am. version. Delicious but not perfectly executed-an easy fix for next time.

A local meat market makes chiccirones on Fridays-this is deep fried pork. If you get there early, there are some really meaty offerings. For flavoring, these work similar to smoked pork hocks or bacon and can be used in a variety of dishes-macaroni and cheese, black bean soup, etc..

Brian, Lita, Hugo and irreverent Vicka, the pigeon toed parrot.

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MASTERPLAN

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Overlay of Version 1 of the master plan. There will be some minor changes to it but for the most part, it is a reasonable starting point. The picture with the yellow dots represents trees.  One swimming pool will likely be eliminated in favor of houses (the large one near the 2nd. pool (bottom left hand corner)  This area will likely become a condominium within a condominium having it's own direct street access.