It’s been a very busy two weeks here at Angel Valley Farm B&B, up in the mountains above San Ramon! Between guests at the B&B and just wrapping up our May “Boomers in Costa Rica” relocation/retirement tour of the Central Valley, it’s enough to keep anyone out of trouble! Working this time of year, particularly outdoors, can be a challenge though. If you want to view properties, for example, you need to get out there early in the morning to catch views of the mountains and/or the ocean (at least from the San Ramon area), not to mention walking in the mud is no fun!
Pothole Season is back….
This time of year with the rains brings back those ever so fun potholes. They seem to be particularly bad on the “back road” between my house and San Ramon, however, I’ve also seen crews out re-paving roads in a number of areas around town lately, so progress is definitely being made! These roads are definitely hard on automobiles and my car has taken quite a beating in the two years I’ve had it. I just think most cars weren’t made to bounce along roads—it just seems to whack
stuff out of place—but surprisingly the car has survived fairly well. It continues to love gasoline, however, and prices continue to rise here! If you need to buy a car, definitely buy something efficient as gas prices will definitely hurt your budget here!
I’ve been asked by a few people to mention some of my favorite restaurants in the San Ramon area as well as in Costa Rica more broadly. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not culinary expert, but I do have a decent sense of what is good and what isn’t. So here’s my list:
Café Delicias: American style coffee shop and restauarant. Their burritos are amazing and their eggs, bacon and rice and beans are terrific!
Aromas Café: Similar to Café Delicias. If you visit Aromas, definitely try their warm brownie with vanilla ice cream! Just ask for it after you eat, because if you don’t they always seem to be bring it first.
Rincon Poetas: A nice restaurant and bar in downtown San Ramon. It serves terrific steak, particularly their filet minon.
Alida’s Restaurant: The best pizza in the Central Valley. Run by really Italians.
You must try this place!
Restaurant Rancho Nelson: The best lunch in the Central Valley! Their casados (meat of some kind, rice, beans, veggies and plantains) are huge and very tasty!
There are many but I like Tin Jo for Asian, Newscafe for people watching and Café Mundo for great food and a great atmosphere.
There are more but I am forgetting some. These restaurants, at least, are those I seem to go back to again and again.
Tours and Real Estate….
Like most expatriates living here, my life now seems to revolve around real estate whether I’m taking people to see properties during my “Boomers in Costa Rica” Tours or through my own investments in land. I have to admit, I love seeing new properties even if I’m not buying them! It is also fun to see clients’ eyes light up when they find a property they like with incredible mountain or ocean views and particularly fun when they realize how inexpensive Costa Rica still is compared to the cost in the United States. While prices are going up here, to buy an ocean-view property for under $100,000 and
even under $50,000 in some cases, and build a home for perhaps another $50,000 to $80,000, is still remarkable to most people—certainly to those people living in expensive areas like the Northeastern U.S., Florida or California.
Showing people real estate and what is is like to live in the Central Valley is particularly rewarding for me. It’s an amazing thing to gain knowledge but it feels equally terrific to impart knowledge. Helping people make decisions about what towns to consider living in by providing a number of benchmarks—climate, services, cost of living, access to medical care, social events, and so on—makes the experience for people considering moving here so much easier. It’s the kind of help I wish I had when I first moved here. However, I learned from my own mistakes and those of others, figured out who to trust and not to trust, and most importantly, realized who were good people to know.
The other day I went out with the rest of the CR Communities team (www.crcommunities.com) to “stake out” the lots at our ocean-view development, “Three Springs at Magallanes,” near San Ramon. It was really fun after all of our hard work to see
the project coming together! Not only is it great to see the development work moving along, but working as a team to prepare our website, develop marketing and sales material, run our tours and much more, for a small group that hadn’t worked together in the past, is really remarkable and rewarding. We all have our strengths on this project and each team member brings something unique and important to the project. But more importantly, each team member adds value and a different perspective to what another team member is doing. At the end of the day, an incredible community of beautiful homes, designed by an award-winning architect will be built, and there will be many happy people in this community. However, the process we are going through to get there is just as rewarding for me. I’ve learned a good deal about real estate development in Costa Rica and fortunately learned much more from looking at the results of poorly planned and executed developments. Moreover, I’ve learned a lot from my teammates as well!
June’s usually a slow month but….
I should relax for the next week or so as June is going to be unusually busy!
This coming month I’m running two Boomers tours, have a number of returning guests at the B&B and friends and relatives coming. It’s going to be a crazy month! I just hope the rains don’t get in the way too much!
Thanks for reading and for your comments. More soon!
www.CRCommunities.com (real estate and more!)
www.BoomersInCostaRica.com (4-day/3 night relocation/retirement/real estate tour!)
www.CostaRicaRealEstate.typepad.com (Boomers’ Real Estate & More Blog!)
www.AngelValleyFarmBandB.com (the B&B!)
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