Properties in Costa Rica Blog

Monthly Archives: December 2019

New Year’s in Costa Rica!

New Year’s in Costa Rica!

December 30, 2019

Properties in Costa Rica

New year’s in Costa Rica, just like in the rest of the world is one of the most festive and celebrated holidays. With that being said, Costa Rica has its own customs and traditional ways in which people celebrate the coming of a new year. These traditions with a mix of your own customs can create a truly eventful and unforgettable start of the new year.

First and foremost, traditionally, New Year’s is very family-oriented, a night that you spend with those who you are closest to. Unlike our North American friends, who like to spend this night out in a bar or club, Costa Ricans party at home. Unless you are in popular beach towns with tourists and vacationers; here you can find parties and events for New Year’s. But usually, you find that most bars and restaurants closed a few hours before midnight, so everyone is able to enjoy New Year’s with family and close friends. Expect a bunch of fireworks, but please be safe, especially since there is usually a lot of alcohol consumed on this night.

Some of Costa Rican traditions may seem a little unorthodox, but the average tico can be extremely superstitious about doing these annual rituals; to make sure the upcoming year brings nothing but luck, prosperity, and love.

Eating 12 Grapes at the stroke of midnight!

Costa Ricans will eat twelve grapes, at midnight, one for each month, as well as add twelve wishes for the upcoming year. This tradition can also be found in other Latin American countries, but Ticos take this tradition to heart!

Wear the color that represents your desire!

It is believed here in Costa Rica, that wearing certain colors will attract certain fortunes for the upcoming year. You can also hang ribbons of a certain color on your front door, to attract these same fortunes. For instance, wearing green underwear will bring you excess money this year. Wearing yellow will attract good luck for the year that is to come. And for those looking for the perfect romantic relationship, you wear non-other than red. People also will carry a suitcase around the block in order to bring you new travel experiences.

Water is good, great, grand!

Costa Ricans will throw water over and behind your shoulder. This is a representation of what you are leaving behind, as you look to start a brand new year, a fresh new year!

People have different ways of celebrating with those close family and friends. Some will celebrate at home. Others may find their way to the beach in order to join spectacular celebrations. Some may even attend the Fiesta Zapote, which is a week-long celebration with drinks, food, games. Whichever way you decide to celebrate here in Costa Rica, make sure you do with the ones you love, and make sure you do it the Tico way and the Kind way!


Holiday season in Costa Rica

Holiday season in Costa Rica

December 23, 2019

Properties in Costa Rica

Costa Rican Christmas is a day filled with festivities and family traditions that go back decades. Christmas decorations can go up as early November, right after the Halloween decorations go down, Christmas ones go up. As holiday preparations kick into high gear, many Costa Ricans decorate their homes with blinking lights, a Christmas tree, as well as your favorite Christmas and religious characters (Santa, Nutcracker, Jesus).

Christmas is a time of bonuses and long vacations from school and work. All employers are required by law to pay an aguinaldo, an annual bonus equivalent to one month’s salary. Students enjoy about 2 months off from school, while many employees get at least a week or two off from work. Most government offices close for the weeks preceding and following Christmas day. Due to the extra vacation time and bonuses, the end of December is one of the most popular times of year to travel. In terms of travel, families from all over the world love to travel to Costa Rica during the holiday season, surging prices to max during this period.

Christmas is a very important tradition for Costa Ricans. Most families, religious or not, display a nativity scene in their home. Tradition states that families who do not own a home may only use gifted nativity scenes so that the Holy Family will help them buy a house in the future. Schools, churches, and town parks also assemble large and elaborate nativity scenes. Both personal and public displays are a source of pride, featuring fresh moss, brown wrapping paper, and treasured figurines to depict the night of Jesus’ birth.

Traditionally, Costa Ricans buy cypress trees for Christmas. Artificial trees are also used and recently have become more common. Most families decorate their trees with ornaments, lights, and a golden star, very similar to our North American friends. A large Christmas Tree displayed at the San Jose Children’s Hospital is perhaps Costa Rica’s most famous Christmas tree. It is said to represent thankfulness for all we have been given especially during that year, and the year that is to come.

Groups walk through the streets on some nights, singing Christmas carols and spreading the Christmas spirit. These processions, known as posadas, vary by town. Some are led by two small children carrying a replica of Joseph and Mary on a donkey, while others have their own personal traditions

Though most homes and public places have been decorated for weeks, the Christmas season officially kicks off with the Festival of Lights in San Jose. The event, which annually holds about one million individuals, and usually takes place two weeks before Christmas. The giant parade, which includes floats and bands, also displays hundreds of thousands of lights, including inspiring fireworks displays.

Christmas Eve, known as Noche Buena (Good Night), is a day for the family. After spending the day together, many Catholic families attend a Christmas Mass. After mass, families settle in for a late-night Christmas feast, which can often include turkey, pork leg, tamales, and other traditional foods. Once the children are in bed, the baby Jesus brings gifts that will be opened on Christmas morning. Only until recently has Santa Claus become a part of family Christmas traditions. After the midnight meal, most families place a Baby Jesus figure in their nativity scene manger, symbolizing the one and only holy birth.

The holiday season officially ends on January 6th, the Epiphany Day (Day of Kings and WIzards) Costa Ricans add the three wise men to their displays on this day, representing their arrival to Bethlehem. Religious songs and hymns can be sung, as this marks the end of the festive holiday season in Costa Rica.

Freedom, Equality, Democracy

Freedom, Equality, Democracy

December 12, 2019

Properties in Costa Rica

As we pass the date of December 10th, we marked International Human Rights Day. Here in Costa Rica, we continue to fortify our model regarding the development and culture of peace and unity. This type of mentality allows individuals to move forward together in order to deliver us free from all types of discrimination.

Trying to reach the full potential of activism in human rights is like a full marathon with a never-ending finish line. It requires a steady dedication and relentless attitude in order to continue the fight against the unfair and unjust. That is why campaigns and movements have been launched in Costa Rica for many years, in order to avoid prejudices towards the physical appearance of people and combat those who judge based off stereotypes; that for years has been an obstacle that does not let our society advance, for achieving a more inclusive and humane society. One of these campaigns was Dare to Know Me, an institutional initiative that recognizes a diverse, multiethnic and multicultural Costa Rica in which we should all be recognized as equals.

Let me introduce to you, a closer look into Costa Rica’s human rights history. In 1945 the United Nations System is created and Costa Rica is one of the founding countries. Since 1947, the country has been committed to the guiding principles of the United Nations, an organization that seeks equality in human rights of all people, without any discrimination when it comes to race, ethnicity, color, gender, sexual orientation, religion, language, political opinion, national or social origin, economic position, birth, gender identity or any other condition that separates you or a group from others. In 2017, the United Nations recognized the efforts of the Costa Rican State to adopt legislative measures on the multiethnic nature of the State, people trafficking, migration, racial discrimination, and other ethical issues. At the same time, Costa Rica welcomed the introduction of several international human rights instruments.

Costa Rica is a country that has stood out since its inception as a defender of human rights, freedom, and equality of people, as well as democracy. Overall Costa Rica, has never as a governed state, lacked the attitude and mentality of demonstrating that we are all one amongst equals. Although we can’t go on without saying that there have been difficult obstacles that we as a nation have faced. Costa Rica, like many countries, must work to deepen equal rights in its population and one of its main challenges is with indigenous communities because they usually have inadequate access to education, health, and employment. Another example of a group that does not yet have equal rights is those of the LGTB community, as is the case of same-sex marriage. This seems to be an issue that needs immediate resolutions, as the world seems to be changing in terms of the general agreement of individuals that same-sex couples have the right to freely express their will. Male abuse on females is another factor that must be worked on, although compared to other Latin American countries, Costa Rica is probably not as bad as others. Despite these conditions, Costa Rica is a country committed to democracy, equality and the guarantee of rights for all people among other facts, because it has comparably low levels of crime, poverty, and illiteracy.

Last year, Costa Rican youth from different provinces in the Central Valley decided to call out society on several topics such as…

  • More study opportunities in scientific careers for women
  • Promote professional work alternatives in rural areas and with decent wages
  • Achieve equality between men and women
  • Eradicate femicides and violence against women
  • However, young people said that among all Costa Ricans, a society based on peace, equality and human rights-based on elevated values that characterize the inhabitants of this country must continue to be built.

We hope as Costa Ricans to both continue to be a platform for others around the world to follow, as well as continue to learn that we are far from where we need to be.


How Costa Rica is becoming a safe-haven for pets of vacationers and locals

How Costa Rica is becoming a safe-haven for pets of vacationers and locals

December 4, 2019

Properties in Costa Rica

Over the years Costa Rica has made an enormous effort to protect the rights of companion animals, especially those on the streets without a home. The amount of support that includes shelters and animal clinics have duplicated over the last decades solely on the concept of protecting our furry friends. Also satisfying to animal lovers, the amount of dog parks and gourmet food available for pets has had a significant change for the better as of late. When it comes to our companions at home or strays that are or were on the street, Costa Rica has made huge strides to make sure all the necessary requirements to properly take care of these beautiful animals are met.

Costa Rica has had a steady increase in the number of hotels that are becoming pet-friendly in order to cater to a new generation of pet owners who do not want their companions to miss out during family trips. This approach is beneficial in a few ways. First, this route allows those who care dearly for pets, in general, to be able to give their furry friends an enjoyable experience that they would normally miss out on. On the business side, this gives hotels a more broad amount of potential clients that again, deeply care for their pets and their happiness.

The key to providing a pleasant pet-friendly experience is to be naturally passionate about pets and those who own pets; to care for their contentment, their activities, and the general well-being of the animals. In actuality, just allowing a family to be able to bring their pets without restrictions is the biggest gift you can give the family and their companion.

In Playas del Coco Guanacaste, for example, Hotel Chantel welcomes guests who wish to bring their canine and feline companions along. Ground transportation for pets to Hotel Chantel from the Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport is very accessible and manageable for all pet-owners. In Esterillos beach, Rancho Coral is a lovely, cozy hotel that sits steps from the beach. They are complete pet-friendly, allowing you to take your pet to the beach during your stay. Other pet-friendly hotels include; the 4 Seasons Resort in Papagayo (no pet fee), Selina in Manuel Antonio, The Sheraton in Escazu (no pet fee), Arenal Lodge (no pet fee). Many more are not mentioned, but it is important to know that there are dozens all over Costa Rica.

In terms of animal rescue, Costa Rica has one of the most famous Dog Sanctuaries in the world. Territorio de Zaguates (Land of the Strays) is a Dog reserve, where over 900 stray dogs have been welcomed. This refuge is a redefined, top-class animal shelter that has miles of open space, lush fields, and even certain indoor areas for sleeping, eating, and bathing. Here, visitors can see hundreds of dogs running free, up and down the grassy hills. All dogs are welcomed, with no restrictions whatsoever. Here any visitor can adopt a dog. With all types of breeds are available, and even unique hybrids can be found. We also encourage those who can, to donate to the cause of maintaining these wonderful creatures. Please visit for more details.

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