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New International Airport in South Pacific – Editorial by Nick Halverson

My first trip to Costa Rica was in March 2005. During that initial trip, the local real estate agent told me about the “New international airport that will be built soon.” Here we are Nick Halverson sittwelve years later and still not another international airport.

In my agent’s defense, there had been government publicity, an article in The Tico Times, with a map, about the airport and he was simply repeating what he had read. Again, in 2007, then-Costa Rica President Oscar Arias held a public relations event whereby he signed a decree to move forward with an international airport in Osa.

In the past 18 months there has been a lot of talk about a new international airport to be built in Orotina. From contacts I have, as

Orotina airport costa rica

Proposed design for airport in Orotina

recently as six months, after the formal announcement had been made, no wind studies or environmental studies had been conducted. I find it hard to believe that the Orotina airport is as much of a ‘slam-dunk’ as is being reported. The latest news is that we will all know more by the end of 2017.

Is the airport going to be built in Osa? I would guess no.

As much as I would love to have an international airport 30 minutes away from our development (believe me, prices would go up quickly!), based on what happened the past 10 years from Oscar Arias announcing it, to now = very little of anything has happened. Osa currently doesn’t have the infrastructure in place to handle a project that large. I could argue it is a bit of a chicken-and-egg problem. The large hotel chains haven’t built here yet because there isn’t a reason to without an international airport. The feasibility studies would show that the region isn’t equipped to handle an international airport since there aren’t any large hotels in the area. It’s a circular argument.

In addition, after the signing of the document by Arias, the people of Costa Rica voted on Costa Rica’s participation in CAFTA

Oscar Arias airport palmar norte

In 2008, then President Oscar Arias, signed documents in Palmar Norte announcing the new airport. It was never built.

(Central America Free Trade Agreement) or TLC as it was known in Costa Rica. The Osa region voted against the measure, and it has been speculated that in retaliation for not supporting him, President Arias pulled the project out of Osa. By contrast, Limon on the Caribbean side, voted “Si” (yes) for the TLC, and soon after the vote, the Limon Port expansion was announced (Limon Moin Container project).

Regardless, the real reason why the airport was never started in Osa is still up for debate today. I have spoken with the Osa Mayor several times, and he is continuing to try and push the project forward. However, he understands the difficulty of getting the politicians in San Jose, four hours away, to listen.

Another option that has quickly, and quietly, been worked on is to build a new airport in the San Isidro del General, Perez Zeledon area. Although not technically in Osa, it would be a great advantage for owners in Las Villas de San Buenas. The reason why this would be great for Las Villas de San Buenas is that currently San Isidro is only 75 minutes away. I have it confirmed by several sources, that the Osa municipality and the municipality of San Isidro are in late planning stages for improving and paving the road from the southern area of San Isidro that leads into Uvita. When this road project is completed, the trip to San Isidro will be cut down to approximately 45 minutes.

Aeropuerto PZSan Isidro (Aeropuerto PZ) has numerous advantages over Osa for the airport. Several include:

  • Large population base (~150,000 people) that may use the airport for outbound flights.
  • With the large population base, there are dozens of hotels already available.
  • A very entrepreneurial region of Costa Rica. There are 1,000s of business owners in the region who support commerce and trade.
  • By building the airport in San Isidro, the Osa region would still benefit due to the Pan American Highway that is already in place connected Palmar Norte to San Isidro (by way of Buenos Aires).
  • Plenty of flat land is available.
  • The project is not just an airport. The local government is planning on a multi-faceted development plan, including tax incentives for business to move there and other project tied to the airport.

Here’s a video that shows the concepts:

If the road is paved between Uvita (20 min away from Las Villas de San Buenas) and San Isidro, AND, IF, the airport is built in San Isidro, the entire southern coast will benefit tremendously.

Regardless of which location is chosen, it will be a benefit to us here in the Osa region. I can’t guarantee when or where exactly, although I would estimate that the timelines are at least five years away. The one thing I can guarantee, is depending on where the location is chosen, land prices will go up quickly or VERY quickly.

Located in beautiful Osa region of Costa Rica

Osa = most beautiful region of Costa Rica!

Las Villas de San Buenas is located in one of the most beautiful locations on Earth – Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula . Osa Costa Rica is considered to be one of the most biologically intense place in the world. Along with the largest mangrove forest in the world, miles of beaches and countless species of flowers, wildlife and birds, Osa Costa Rica is truly paradise. Click image to learn more about the immediate area and location.

mountains osa costa rica

 

We are located just 1 mile (2 km) from the Costanera Highway in the small, peaceful town of San Buenaventura. For more information about our location visit this page. 

Meet Our Customers

Las Villas de San Buenas has a diverse set of owners from around the world (eight countries and counting). Come join us in paradise!! More information here

Customers San Buenas

Our customers come from around the world and have a variety of backgrounds.

Scarlet Macaw (Lapa) Photographed from Casa Lapas

There’s a reason we call Casa Lapas, ‘Casa Lapas’. A lapa is the Costa Rican name for the scarlet macaw. We hear and see them almost daily. Below is a photograph of one in an almond tree near Casa Lapa.

The photograph below was taken by Nick Halverson in May 2015 from the backyard of Casa Lapa using a Nikon D5000 with a Nikkor 18-140 mm lens. It is of a scarlet macaw (or a lapa as they are known in Costa Rica).

There were four lapas eating the ripening almonds from the almond tree in the early morning. If you look closely at the photo you can see that this one has the almond between its beak. We planted those trees approximately three years ago and we now regularly have lapas flying in and eating.

Costa Rica lapa san buenas

Lapa (scarlet macaw) enjoying an almond behind Casa Lapas, Las Villas de San Buenas. (c) Nick Halverson

 

 

Drone Video of Las Villas de San Buenas and Region

Successful Inaugural San Buenas Writers’ Retreat

We recently hosted the inaugural San Buenas Writers’ Retreat here at Las Villas de San Buenas.

 

 

If You Love Somebody, Bring Them to Paradise

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12565470_986769524736648_6788228169006858497_nI’m lonely in paradise.

Naively, I thought 3 months in Costa Rica would be like Hemingway’s ‘A Movable Feast’ or like any of the Beat Generation writers living in Mexico City or Morocco. Instead it was like ‘Walden’ by Henry David Thoreau.

I’ve spent an incredible amount of time alone in communication with nature. Often I awake at sunrise or moments before, and always, without fail, I make sure I am outside during sunset.

I’ve never been an outdoorsy person and yet I love Costa Rica’s countryside. Everything is so beautiful here, the mountains, the jungles and the sky, sometimes I swear when I look up, the clouds are perfect, perfect sizes and perfect shapes, during the day when they’re white and puffy and at sunset when they reflect gold and pink.

Strangely, I grew up in Florida drinking orange juice and ice tea and yet, the best ice tea and orange juice I’ve ever had is in Costa Rica. Their milk shakes are great, too as is their ice cream. Coffee here is potent and delicious and their chocolate rivals the best in the world.

Like the quest of the Transcendentalist, I’ve ‘found myself’ in this beauty and solitude. I’m happy, and see my life with a newfound clarity. I’ve accepted every aspect of my past, happy with my present and have renewed enthusiasm for my future.

While here, I’ve meditated, I’ve prayed and I’ve written a novel. I’ve also lost weight and genuinely look the best I’ve looked in years.

Life is transformative in Las Villas de San Buenas de Osa and whatever it is that you are seeking, you will find in its natural beauty and pace of life. And I want you to come here and have the same experiences I have in regards to ‘finding yourself’ and being one with the world around you. (If that’s what you’re seeking.) (You can come here if you simply want to relax and have good time, too.)

However, there’s something I’ve lacked down here that I don’t want anyone to suffer from. Lack of companionship. All this beauty would be enhanced if I was here with somebody I love.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve had a great time here and have enjoyed my solitude but there have been so many moments that would’ve romantic with the right company.

A few nights ago, we had a full moon that hung over the villa, just a few clouds in the sky, even the dark, stone-filled dirt roads that are generally black as midnight by 7, were now illuminated by grey light bright enough to not use my flashlight, a necessity in a part of the country where there are very few street lights and the jungle’s protected by the government.

It felt like I was walking through a black & white movie. You can see everything clearly but it’s all dark and grey.

Walking into the beautiful night I thought first of Erskine Caldwell who once wrote, “At night, I saw how beautiful the day could never be,” and I thought about love.

I would’ve done anything to share that night with somebody I love.

To share the sunsets, the sunrise, the perfect clouds, the coffee, the chocolate, the food, the nearby beaches, the waterfall, and the multiple swimming pools here in the villas, with somebody you love, would make my here as romantic as it would be perfect.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m happy and think this time here has been exactly what the doctor ordered and I know you can have the same great, enriched, transformative experience that I have.

However, you can do one better than me by simply bringing somebody with you whom you love. And loves you back. Be it a spouse or a lover.

Come here alone, -I’m having a great time, or bring somebody you love and hold hands while walking during the full moon and pretend you’re in a black and white movie and kiss. Lay in the fresh cut fields pointing out which cloud is most perfect, admire the other’s skin when the sun sets, and open the bedroom windows, pull the curtains aside and snuggle when the sun rises.

My name is Ezekiel Tyrus. I am the gatekeeper to paradise. Contact me. Come down here. You’ll have an amazing time. Bring somebody you love and make it romantic.

Meet Francisco and Oscar!!

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12522965_983754791704788_5039989083862147873_nMeet Francisco and Oscar!

Two of my favorite persons since coming to Costa Rica are Francisco, ‘Fran’ and Oscar. These two dudes work as the groundskeepers of Paradise, also known as Las Villas de San Buenas de Osa.

When you visit this place you’ll be struck how lush, green and beautiful the property is here with a well-trimmed yard and great trees. No trash, nor debris. Every morning Monday through Friday, these two arrive around day-break and get to work. Often, I’m up stargazing, admiring the Costa Rican sunrises, and whenever they see me, they always greet me a smiling “Buenos dias.’

Usually I end up brewing some coffee, always more than I need, inviting them inside whatever place I’m staying at for a cup, an offer they always accept.

Frequently when I eat at a restaurant, step into an office, a retail store or even watch network news, I think I can tell whether the co-workers get along. Can’t you?

Fran and Oscar aren’t related, I’ve asked but they might as well be family. Watching them work together is a pleasure because it’s clear they are very good friends who get along exceptionally well. They don’t speak a lot of English and my Spanish isn’t as good as it should be but the two are always talking and laughing, seemingly enjoying their work and they do a great job. The yards are beautiful and they always seem happy and in a good mood.

Fran is the older one and at 58 he’s in better physical shape than most men half his age. He took me and regularly takes other tourists on tours through the mountainside jungle to admire waterfalls, the whole time he’s leading the way cutting a path with a machete like a whip, his loyal dog Tito strutting behind him.

Some American gringo tourists recently nicknamed him the Latin Indiana Jones and it definitely fits right down to the hat he usually wears. Like that character, he is a ruggedly handsome guy, with his silver trimmed mustache like an Old School movie star in his winter years.

Oscar is the younger, probably in his late 30s, early 40s, I’ve never asked. He’s been known to take people on tours as well to see monkey’s that also live and howl nearby. An exceptional nice, friendly guy who also always seems to be smiling and laughing. Months ago, the water pump in the property broke, it has since gotten fixed but there was Oscar dropping off several gallons of bottled water for me. (Water got fixed before I used it all but it showed how much these guys cared.)

Fran is a neighbor and lives nearby with his wife but Oscar lives further away but not too far. Both men have arrived at night and on days off when I’ve needed something fixed or help for something or other.

Another reasons to adore these guys is the fact that both are dog lovers. They always arrive with several dogs in tow who have the time of their lives while their daddies work; running around the property, knocking each other over, playing, eating lunch with their daddies, napping in the shade.

Sometimes if I have my door open, the dogs come and hang out with me while I write. I love them. They each have several dogs but just like whenever you’ve got a smattering of dogs, there’s always a dominant one, both Fran and Oscar have an Alpha Dog.

Fran’s is a funny, silly, warm-hearted little brown boy scamp named Tito and Oscar’s is beautiful brown Labrador-sized older momma-queen dog named Monica. The other dogs, Milo and Kaiser are sweet and nice but definitely live to follow Tito and Monica who get along as well as Fran and Oscar do.

I’ve said this before and I will say it again, the happiest dogs in the world are in Costa RIca and Tito, Monica, Kaiser and Milo are no exception.

Staying at Las Villas de San Buenas de Osa is a community. It’s life, it’s happiness. I consider Fran and Oscar my friends. Their dogs never fail to make me smile. These men work on the property all year long, keeping it beautiful and bring life and community of what could somewhere else be just a job.

I am Ezekiel Tyrus, the gatekeeper of Paradise. Come see me, and while here, meet the guys that keep Paradise so beautiful and full of life.

#‎EzekielTyrusCostaRica‬
‪#‎LasVillasdeSanBuenasdeOsa‬.

Eat at El Jardin

Walking distance from Las Villas de San Buenas de Osa is a wonderful restaurant called El Jardin. It’s a seafood restaurant but it doesn’t just have seafood. Seafood is simply their specialty and their seafood is rather outstanding.

Their cerviche is to die-for. (Cerviche is a Latin American dish is typically made from fresh raw fish cured in citrus juices, such as lemon or lime, and spiced with chili peppers and 1901351_969288886484712_6791007739212408627_n (1)

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12509582_976198012460466_735592347994672403_nother seasonings, such as chopped onions, salt, and cilantro.) The ones I’ve had at El Jardin’s is some of the best I’ve had in Costa Rica.

However, I want to focus on my two favorite dishes at this restaurant;

Casado a la Campesina, translates to Casado Country Style. Casado is a Costa Rican meal using rice, black beans, plantains, salad, a tortilla, and an optional entrée that may include chicken, beef, pork, fish and so on Casado a la Campesina is typically served as a brunch or breakfast, incl. eggs over medium and fired cheese (queso frito.) Though I’m not a vegetarian I typically get this without meat because quite frankly, it’s enough food. You also get a small salad on the side with cabbage, lettuce and a pico de gallo top of topping with diced tomatoes, peppers, and cilantro and other seasonings. A lot of flavors are coexisting and it’s heavenly, not to mention high-protein, low-fat.

A very close second favorite, and I typically get this when I get there later in the day, is Arroz con Camarones, a classic Latin American dish consisting of rice cooked in a shrimp broth and mixed with shrimp, sautéed onions, peppers, tomatoes, garlic, cumin, achiote and parsley.

At El Jardin, his Arroz con Camarones includes the same small side salad and believe it or not, thin, crispy french fries. You can get this dish ‘medios’ which is a half-order but still plenty, or ‘enteros’ which is a full order. The food is so good and inexpensive, you almost always get the full order. Both dishes come out to about 4 to 6 U.S. dollars. (Keep in mind, I’ve spent the last 20 years living in San Francisco where depending on the what size you got, these meals would go for between 16 to 20 bucks.)

Frederico is the owner and main chef. Friendly, cheerful and bilingual, speaking perfect English which is convenient. A family affair, often his wife and son are also there serving food, taking orders, always cheerful, smiling, happy to see you. El Jardin is always neat and clean, you can eat outside on the patio or inside where the decor is cute with lots of vibrant colors.

One of the numerous benefits of El Jardin is the free WiFi, I’ve done a lot of writing at this place and have enjoyed their strong, tasty Costa Rican coffee but on the subjects of drinks, I’ve got to mention Batidos en Leche, which is essentially, a Latin American milk shake. While it does come in vanilla and chocolate, it also has exotic fruit flavors like melon, mango, papaya, and my all-time favorite, pineapple. Oh, when it is hot outside and you’re sweating till your clothes are stuck to your body, there’s nothing in this world better than a pineapple flavored batidos en leche at El jardin’s. Try all the flavors and decide which is favorite.

While staying at Las Villas de San Buenas de Osa, it’s good to know such a great restaurant is literally around the corner, walking distance from where you’ll be staying. Come see Frederico at El Jardin and try everything, I recommend it all, then decide which are your favorites.

My name is Ezekiel Tyrus. I am the gatekeeper of Paradise. Contact me.

zeke@villassanbuenas.com

#EzekeilTyrusCostaRica

#VillasdeSanBuenasdeOsa