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.

Lapa Photographed at 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

Las Villas de San Buenas to Plant 2,000 trees in Partnership Agreement

Las Villas de San Buenas to Plant 2,000 Trees

Las Villas de San Buenas recently purchased 2,000 trees from a non-profit division of Sembrada Agua logo2ICE (electricity provider) called Sembrada Agua. This project connects high schools and local communities to organizations looking to repopulate damage done decades ago by cattle farmers whom cleared some of the jungles in Costa Rica. The goal of Sembrada Agua is to plant one million trees by 2030 – and we wanted to do our part in helping out.

“We are committed to designing and planning our development in an eco-friendly manner and integrating native trees into the landscapes,” explained Hanz Cruz, General Manager of Las Villas de San Buenas.

Sembrado Agua ICE 1

Some of the 2,000 trees that have been delivered to Las Villas de San Buenas.

Las Villas de San Buenas will be spending the next month planting these trees. When we purchased the land that is now Las Villas de San Buenas there were thousands of gmelina trees that had been planted in the 1960s by local farmers. Gmelina is a non-indigenous, invasive species that chokes out the native trees. After several years, and approximately $85,000, we successfully cleared out the majority of the gmelina trees. We are now actively replanting the same area with fourteen tree species that are native to the Osa Peninsula, which will help bring the land back to its more natural state from 100 years ago.

“We will be planting a variety of fruit trees, hard woods and ornamental trees which will show our owners the beautiful mix of the wonderful bio-diversity found in this region of Costa Rica,” said Las Villas de San Buenas CEO Nick Halverson.

 

Donation to LILA Non-Profit Organization

LILA Lakes International Language AcademyDonation to LILA Non-profit

For the 5th year in a row, Las Villas de San Buenas donated a week of Casa Lapas to Lakes International Language Academy (LILA) foundation. Casa Lapas generated over $2,500 for the non-profit organization with 100% of the funds going directly to LILA.

LILA Parents Jeanine Halverson and Annie Moorman enjoying the evening.

LILA Parents Jeanine Halverson and Annie Moorman enjoying the evening.

Mr. Chuck Phillips from Forest Lake, Minnesota, had the winning bid. Mr. Phillips owns a karate dojo and is looking forward to visiting Las Villas de San Buenas with his family later in 2015.

The funds will be used to further educate a classroom for an entire year with a licensed teacher from outside the USA who will bring their own experience, and language skills, into the classroom.

LILA 2015

Over 150 people attended the fund raiser.

Las Villas de San Buenas CEO Nick Halverson said, “We are proud to continue our commitment to helping LILA, and their International Baccalaureate program, which not only educates students in immersion learning (Spanish and Mandarin Chinese at LILA) but also provides students learning from a global perspective.”

The LILA fund raiser had over 150 in attendance, including Miguel Ramos, from

LILA Miguel Ramos Minnesota Twins

Minnesota Twins’ Miguel Ramos donating a banner for LILA

Major League Baseball’s (MLB) Minnesota Twins’ front office who donated a banner to be hung in LILA’s office and also facilitate several game-ticket packages that were used for a silent auction. The function was attended primarily by parents of students at LILA and several local business owners.

Las Villas de San Buenas is proud to have customers from eight countries (and counting) who speak at least six languages, and continues to attract customers from around the world.

Mr. Halverson stated at the event, “Costa Rica and in particular, Las Villas de San IMG_7536Buenas, appeals to people from around the world due to its amazing wildlife, the spectacular views throughout the property and its diverse customer base. Add to that the world-class amenities nearby and it’s understandable why we continue to attract customers from around the globe.”

 

Costa Rica is the Happiest Country in the World…again

Costa Rica is the Happiest Country in the World

Costa Rica has once again been judged to be the “Happiest Country in the World” by the Happy Planet Index. The rankings are based on the following three components, and each is given a traffic-light score

based on thresholds for good (green), middling (amber) and bad (red) performance. – See more

1) Life expectancy

female surfer playa dominical smile

Costa Rica once again is named the Happiest Country in the World. 

2) Experienced well-being

3) Ecological Footprint

These scores are combined to an expanded six-colour traffic light for the overall HPI score, where, to achieve bright green – the best of the six colours, a country would have to perform well on all three individual components.

The Top 10 Happiest Countries are:

  1. Costa Rica
  2. Vietnam
  3. Columbia
  4. Belize
  5. El Salvador

As one can see, interestingly, four of the top five happiest places are in Central or South America. By way of comparison, the USA ranked 105th, Canada ranked 65th and France 50th.

For more information, and a full ranking of 151 countries, please visit their website here.

Everyone here at Las Villas de San Buenas, and the town of San Buenaventura, understands the happiness lifestyle. People of Costa Rica tend to be more relaxed and proud of what they have – not envious and jealous of others who have “more”. Although many Costa Ricans may not have a lot of “stuff”, what many Costa Ricans do have more of than other countries is a commitment to family and friendship.

This focus and commitment to family and friends is why Costa Rica continues to be a destination for people from around the world (and why we have had customers from eight countries!).

We made a terrific choice!

We made a terrific choice!

The Madrigal family from San Jose, Costa Rica, recently spent a week in Las Villas de San Buenas. After their stay they wrote the following review of their stay.

————

We decided to go south Costa Rica for our year end vacation. We’re from San Jose and we all decided to skip the road to Guanacaste as this time of the year is hectic.

We rented this house for the final week of December and first days of January and we really had a great time here. First of all the road is in in great condition. Directions to the house are also really easy to follow. We were a group of 7 people, 3 couples and a friend. The house has 3 bedrooms, all with their private bathroom. Hot water of course and even a Jacuzzi in the master suite.Costa Rica home rental
Kitchen is in perfect condition, large refrigerator, dishwasher, stove and microwave. Laundry room with washer and dryer. Living room with Sky TV and all others with a DVD player.

The gardens and pool area are exceptional, the ocean view is amazing and we really spent our days there! With a cool breeze and birds singing everywhere.
The property is located in San Buenaventura town, close to beaches, national parks and waterfalls

Now, we really didn’t find any cons, however I must say that the house is listed for 8 people and the house has only 3 bedrooms with 3 beds (for 6 people comfortably accommodated). The other two must sleep in mattresses in the floor so you have to make some room for them in the bedrooms. Not a big issue for us.
Booking process was excellent and Nick the owner, replied every single email in no time.
If you’re thinking for a vacation in south Costa Rica, this is a great choice, you’ll have a wonderful time here!

Casa Cusinga Video

Casa Cusinga Video

Casa Cusinga is one of our newest homes built in Las Villas de San Buenas. The home is located on the edge of the jungle, fifty-feet above a year-round-flowing creek. The home’s modern design, and 16 foot ceilings, provide all-day breezes and fresh air. The proximity to the jungle and the creek are a perfect backdrop to the outdoor, private, Jacuzzi.

If you’re interested in renting this home during your visit to Las Villas de San Buenas and/or your visit to the Osa region, contact us today!

 

High Speed Internet Now Available

High Speed Internet Now Available!

It took several years, and lots of meetings and negotiations, but Las Villas de San Buenas now has DSL high-speed internet available!

Internet San Buenas costa rica

ICE installing the internet and phone lines to Las Villas de San Buenas

We have always wanted to be able to offer this to our full-time

customers and our vacation renters, however, the fiber optic network never extended close enough to our entrance to make this a reality. Due to the small population of San Buenaventura (population ~ 400), neither ICE or CableTica were originally interested in connecting the town. However, the nearby elementary school was recently connected and given our proximity to the school we were able to extend the telephony network to our property. The speeds are great!

For those who enjoy streaming movies on Netflix you will be happy to know that Netflix Costa Rica has been available for over three years. In fact, Netflix Costa Rica has its own Facebook page! If you already have a Netflix account outside of Costa Rica it will probably not work in Costa Rica. You will need to sign up for an additional account with Netflix. However, for the price of an netflix costa rica logoinexpensive meal, you will have access to 10,000s of movies, documentaries and specials.

My Costa Rica Vacation Video 2014

Costa Rica Vacation Video (June 2014)

The following video compilation is from our most recent trip to Costa Rica (June 2014) when the rest of my family came to Las Villas de San Buenas. My kids absolutely love it here in Costa Rica. The highlights always include daily dips in the swimming pool, running and playing in the Pacific Ocean at Playa Ventanas and going horseback riding on the property.

Come on down and make your own memories here! Contact us today to let us help you plan your Costa Rica trip.

Costa Rica is Home to Top 5 Best Global Medical Care

These 5 Countries Provide The Best Health Care In The World | InternationalLiving.com.

Best Healthcare in the World

InternationalLiving.com’s annual Global Retirement Index reports that France, Uruguay and Malaysia provide the best and most affordable health care in the world.

The Health Care category in the Index considers the cost of care and the quality. Also considered are the number of people per doctor, the number of hospital beds per 1,000 people, the percentage of the population with access to safe water, the infant mortality rate, life expectancy, and public-health expenditure as a percentage of a country’s GDP.

France comes in first in this category as the best country in the world for health care. The Top 5 countries with the best healthcare in the world are as follows:

  1. France
  2. Uruguay
  3. Malaysia
  4. Costa Rica
  5. Mexico

 1. France

According to the World Health Organization, France has the number one health care system in the world. The country also comes first in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. Despite their meat-and cream-rich diet augmented by alcohol and cigarettes, the French have been living much longer in recent years. Life expectancy now averages 85 years for women and 78 for men. 

2. Uruguay

Uruguay has a variety of health care options available that include a public health care system for people who cannot afford to pay for private health care, a number of private health insurance options, and the most popular option, a hospital plan called a “mutualista.” Therefore Uruguay comes in second in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. InternationalLiving.com’s Uruguay correspondent, David Hammond, who has lived in the country for seven years, says: “My personal experience with health care in Uruguay has been positive. The cost is a fraction of what I paid for private coverage in the U.S.” 

3. Malaysia

Malaysia has gained fame as a medical-tourism destination because its health care is among the world’s best—and cheapest. Medical expertise here is equal to or better than that in most Western countries. Malaysia comes in third in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. Despite the low cost of health care in Malaysia, many expats do get private health insurance. There is a plethora of national insurers, with no one company being preferred—expats tend to shop around and look for the cheapest offer. 

4. Costa Rica

Hospital de Osa Costa Rica ball blue

Hospital de Osa is located less than five minutes from Las Villas de San Buenas.

Costa Rica’s excellent and affordable health care is largely the result of government investment in the health sector, plus an atmosphere of political stability. Costa Rica comes in fourth in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annualGlobal Retirement Index 2014. By almost any standard, Costa Rica has some of the best health care in Latin America. Not only that, but the country’s public and private health systems are constantly being upgraded—new hospitals, new equipment, and improvements in staff training. 

NOTE from Las Villas de San Buenas: One of Costa Rica’s newest hospitals is located just a couple of miles from Las Villas de San Buenas. This provides an extra layer of support and affordable healthcare options for our clients and guests.

5. Mexico

Given the galloping rise in health care costs in the U.S. and elsewhere, Mexico’s affordable and top-notch health care is a huge benefit to living there. Pretty much across the board, health care in Mexico costs a quarter to a half of what you would pay in the U.S. Mexico comes in fifth in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. Medical insurance with Mexico’s national health care service costs less than $300 a year; private insurance will cost more, depending on age and pre-existing conditions—but still a fraction of what you’d pay in the U.S. for similar coverage. Photo: Glynna Prentice,InternationalLiving.com