Casa Lapas New Costa Rica Rancho

New Costa Rica Rancho

The owners of Casa Lapas, our Chairman Duane Halverson and his wife, Mary, recently improved their home – they added a beautiful Costa Rica Rancho behind the home.

Casa Lapas was the first home constructed in Las Villas de San Buenas and the Halverson’s have been continuously adding features and landscaping to improve not only the look, but also the functionality of the home for their use, their friends’ use and clients. The most recent change was punching a hole in the wall of the garage and building a rancho behind the house.

This home is located in the Estates area of the development. If you would like to own a lot near this home, please take a look at the Estate Lots masterplan.

If you are interested in renting Casa Lapas and its amazing new Costa Rica Rancho, please visit the availability calendar or Contact Us for more information.


Costa Rica Retreat Center Plans

costa rica retreat center plans

The survey for Costa Rica Retreat Center plans (subject to change)

We have always planned on offering more than just an affordable Costa Rica real estate option and with that in mind we are in the early stages of our Costa Rica Retreat Center Plans. We have designated the area we will use, pulling several lots out of inventory, surveyed the area, GPS marked all protected and old-world trees and will start work on the actual plans and models soon.

The actual retreat center will be located just outside the boundary of Las Villas de San Buenas residential development, but part of the original mother farm that was purchased over a decade ago. We have many ideas for the space, including, but not limited to:

  • Yoga
  • Executive training
  • Costa Rica Real Estate training and tours
  • Costa Rica photo retreats
  • We will rent the space, and adjacent cabins, out to those wishing to host their own retreat

The planned location of this Costa Rica retreat center is perfectly located adjacent to a quebrada (stream/creek) that flows throughout the year – even during the dry season. Due to the tree canopy, it is rarely too sunny or hot (it can get a bit humid – you are in a tropical rain forest after all!) and given the proximity to the creek, simply take a refreshing dip to cool off.

Another advantage of the planned location is that it is only a five minute walk to the amazing waterfalls located nearby.

Whether those who use the retreat center are there for business or pleasure, waking up to the sounds of howler monkeys, toucans, scarlet macaws and even owls, will be an experience of a lifetime.

Given we are early in the planning session, we cannot guarantee details, but this is the current Costa Rica Retreat Center Plans are. We will be working with Osa Property Management on the facilities management. Stay tuned!


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



Custom Home Design Service Available

We can custom design a home to perfectly fit your lot. Below is our latest design for our customer, who has a specific set of requests. They love it!!!

For more information about our library of home designs, or to learn more about our custom home design process, please read more here. 

Contact us today!!

Drone Video of Las Villas de San Buenas and Region

Shipping a Vehicle to Costa Rica

Shipping a Vehicle to Costa Rica

Submitted by Jason Mueller, who has lived in Costa Rica for three years and specializes in facilitating the process of shipping vehicles to Costa Rica.

If you have dreamed of living in a beautiful villa in paradise island, then Costa Rica is the place for you. Costa Rica has some of the world’s best surfing waves ,the most beautiful shoreline and a wide array of things to do in-and-around the coast. 

Why Make the Move to Costa Rica?

A popular location for tourists as well as expats looking to find a new tropical home is the town of San Buenaventura, also known as San Buenas, located in the Southern Pacific area (Osa) of Costa Rica. This town is about a mile offshore, but those who like keeping their toes in the hot sand will have easy access to reach the beach in no time at all. You’ll find great views of the mountains and oceans (there are real estate options for both) and plenty of things to do while in town.

Mountain views in villas san buenas

Amazing mountain views from Casa Lapas in Las Villas San Buenas.

For the golf lovers, the San Buenas Golf Resort opens their greens to those that want to have a great round of golf, followed by a cold drink. Golf in Costa Rica is a great way to soak up the sun and spend a day relaxing with friends. 

If you want to take in a bit of nature throughout Costa Rica, the parks and recreational trails offer a glimpse into the fascinating wild life in the area that includes monkeys, birds and many other wildlife species and best of all, the comfortable, warm temperatures welcome everyone to come enjoy everything that Costa Rica life offers.

The beach seems to be what many people come to Costa Rica for. The coast has much to offer, especially for those who like to surf, swim, kayak or otherwise spend time lounging in the sand and enjoying the ocean. Costa Rica is well-known around the world as the best place in the Pacific for surfing, and even if you have never surfed in your life, you can still enjoy watching others as they whip around on the waves. Better yet, in Costa Rica you will be able to find a great surf instructor and find out what it feels like to ride the waves on your own. Enjoy Playa Ventanas, Playa Pinuela or Playa Dominical, where the best surfing can be found.

If you’re planning on making a permanent move to Costa Rica, you’ll find many lavish villas, condos and even small houses where you can spend years to come living in paradise. Whether you want to rent or even buy a home to live in or find a plot of land and have a home built, you will find many options to choose from.

Is Moving to Costa Rica Hard?

Moving to Costa Rica does not have to be difficult, but you may find that gaining permanent residency can take quite a bit of time. If you are a retiree or a person who has a steady income stream monthly, and can prove you have steady income, you may be eligible to get a pension visa, also called a Pensionado Residency. Many people in the country on a tourist visa leave every 90 days and return the same day to be able to stay another 90 days.

Many rental homes are furnished, so before you start packing your home in the U.S. to have everything shipped, you may want to determine where you will live and see what you will need. Many household items may cost more in Costa Rica than what you would pay in the U.S., so take the necessary time to see what you may need to spend to purchase new items as opposed to what you will spend shipping things over. Customs taxes on household goods can range between 10% and 13% of the value of the property. To ship household goods, you need to hire a reputable international moving company.

Shipping a Vehicle to Costa Rica

Shipping a vehicle to Costa Rica can be affordable with rates that generally run between $1000 USD and $3000 USD. You will need some important paperwork including your passport and a

Shipping vehicle costa rica gravel road

Many roads in Costa Rica are gravel, therefore, four-wheel traction vehicles (4×4) is recommended

driver’s license as well as the vehicle registration and title. You will also need to provide customs with the bill of lading and an emissions test certificate. Taxes on vehicle imports can be high and typically range from around 52% up to nearly 80%. The newer the car, the lower the tax requirement for import. A reliable international auto shipping company like A-1 Auto Transport, Inc. will be able to assist with moving your vehicle to Costa Rica. Visit this page for more information on the shipping process as well as how much it will cost.

Whether you plan to be the perpetual tourist and wander from one area to another renting a vacation home for a while before moving on, or you want to plant your roots by purchasing a lot to build a home or by purchasing a beautiful home, condo or villa, you will quickly find there are many great things about Costa Rica that you will fall in love with quickly. With many options for living, your dreams of moving to Costa Rica can come true and soon you will see just how great life can be when you’re living the Pura Vida lifestyle that you can only find in Costa Rica.  


Successful Inaugural San Buenas Writers’ Retreat

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



Thoughts on New International Airport in Costa Rica

Written by Nick Halverson / February 2017

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 twelve 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 of the real reason why the airport was never started in Osa is still up for debate today. I have spoken with 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 de el General, Perez Zeledon. 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:

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.