I came to Costa Rica for the first time in January of 1999 because I had read so much about the ecology and beauty of the country. The charter flight landed at the Daniel Oduber Quiros airport, which at the time was not an International airport and only had charter flights coming in from the USA. It became an International Airport years later.
I will never forget the door of the plane landing, and a ramp being pushed into place for us to deplane. As soon as I got to the doorway to go down the stairs I felt the blast of warm air, and seeing the quaint little airport terminal. Loved it immediately.
As we proceeded thru customs and to the charter bus to take us to the resort we had booked, Occidental Costa Samaldra at the time, now Occidental Grand Papagayo, the drive there made me fall in love with the country at first sight. The resort was wonderful, I made several friends among the staff there, that I am still friends with today. I told some that I would
like to buy some property in the area, and if they heard of anything to let me know. The trip was only one week, which passed so fast. Then when I returned home I began my quest to find my own piece of paradise on the internet. Finally I came up with locations in Parrita, Brasillito, Quepos, Belen, and the property I ultimately purchased, which one of my hotel friends from the last trip wrote to tell me had become available.
When I returned in 2000 I hired a tour guide to take me to see all the locations I had decided looked promising to me based on what I saw on line. All locations had good and bad things about them, Quepos already too crowded, Parrita property although beautiful, much too difficult to get to and the landscape would have been very hard to install infrastructure on, and all locations other than my final choice had issues that were of concern, and all were further from a major airport than I wanted.
Since I live 90 miles from the Detroit, MI airport, and have friends come to visit, and ask that I pick them up and take them back to the airport, something that is very inconvenient, I wanted a much faster and easier drive to whatever location I chose here in Costa Rica.
The property I liked best was what is now Colinas del Sol. I chose this property for many reasons. First, I loved the location with a short and easy drive to the beach towns, and to the Daniel Oduber airport, and the proximity to the medical care available in a larger city, Liberia I wanted to have available, along with the advantages involved being a larger city regarding shopping.
Another huge factor for me was the fact that being in insurance and risk management my entire career, I realized the possibilities of threats from tsunami's, and volcano's in many of the other areas, which I felt much more sure would not be a threat in this location.
The trip ended too soon, but I had found the property of my dreams. I corresponded with the owners of the property for the next 8 months, going back and forth on the size of the property I was looking for, and the price. The wanted to sell the entire amount of land they owned here, which was around 300 hectares which was much more than the 1 or two hectares I was looking for. Since I had never imagined myself doing a land development I wanted just enough land for a large lot for privacy, and the room for planting my own trees. They finally agreed that they would sell me 50 hectares for a price that was less than the asking price for all the other much smaller, I or 2 hectare parcels I had looked at. So, I agreed and came into San Jose to close on the deal in January of 2001.
I had no intention of doing a real estate project, as I said, but what to do with this much land I thought. So I realized that if I loved this location and it's proximity to everything one needs, then others would feel the same, so I decided I would separate the property into lots and give others the opportunity for their piece of this wonderful property.
I envisioned large lots of a hectare or more, and had the help of a lot of people who knew how to determine the best way to put roads thru the mountain areas, and set up the plan's for lots.
Then I got permits and installed four new wells, put in the roads and underground water system, and had the overhead electrical system installed. In 2006 the water concessions were granted, this has since been converted and is legal through ASADA.
Prior to construction beginning, we submitted a water letter from the municipality, along with the building plans to ensure we were thorough in our approach.
Everything at Colinas is legal and properly permitted.
I wanted to have a beautiful project that enabled people to live as inexpensively as possible in paradise, and already planted many fruit trees and bananas, and avocado's among other things. Everyone can have their own fruit trees, veggie gardens, and if they are so inclined, and have the room for keeping a horse or two, and have their own little hobby farms, or just a beautiful retirement or vacation residence.
With modern technology I am sure we can install solar and other "green" electric systems for people and hope to find affordable water recycling systems to conserve this valuable resource, as I knew from having surveys done prior to buying the land, that the Sardinal aquifer was under this land, and being in a "tropical dry forest" conserving water would be an important consideration.
I also wanted a place where people could have a nice pond with an area for swimming, and another area for fishing, and I would stock the pond to be built with tilapia and a variety of bass that does well in warm weather and a few catfish to help keep it clean. Then a rancho with lights, fans, and places where people can picnic with bar-b-que's we will put in, and enjoy conversations with their friends, watch their children or grandchildren play and swim, use it as a gathering place. There is already one small pond I installed, which is private on lots others have already purchased.
The new pond to be installed will be over 3500m2 in size and will have pumps to aerate the water for the fish, and maintain the correct water levels. More fruit and ornamental trees to keep the wildlife attracted to the area will be installed in the future, and buyers of lots are encouraged to so the same on their lots, to have natural beauty all around them.