Posted by shieldwatch on May 15, 2017 4:12:36 AM

Wealth has nothing to do with happiness, which explains why a developing country like Costa Rica has grabbed the top spot in the Happy Planet Index (HPI) rankings, not only once but many times with a substantial lead. The HPI, which ranks 140 nations according to "what matters most – sustainable well-being for all" using such parameters as life expectancy, well-being, inequality, and ecological footprint, doesn’t consider the standard success criterion like GDP. No wonder, some of the wealthiest nations like the USA, the UK, and even Switzerland fare poorly in the HPI list. This leaves us wondering, what is it that makes Costa Rica the happiest nation on the planet? Does it have something to do with its ravishing beauty? Is it their love for the environment? Does the culture and food hold the secret? Let's find out; this could be a revelation for you.

No Army

Instead of spending zillions on feeding an extra-large army and buying military equipment, Costa Rica invests itsmoney on what matters – health and education of its people. Health and knowledge breed happy people – it is easy to see the connection.

Love for the Environment

Costa Rica is one of a few countries that strives to become carbon neutral by 2021. Unlike many other tourist destinations in the world that willingly lose their lands and ecological balance to the aggressive property developers and hoteliers, Costa Rica focuses on converting forests into park lands and nature preserve. The pride of having a green, well-kept country translates into happiness.

Philosophy of Letting Go

Costa Rican traditions forbid their people from holding grudges against another person for more than three days. Now, isn’t that wonderful? How can you remain sad or unhappy when you have no complaint against anything or anybody?

Healthy Eating Habits

Costa Rica has no soda, junk, or additives in the form of refined sugar and sodium; only a diet comprising fresh fruits, vegetables, fiber-rich rice and beans. The result? A regiment of healthy people that are strong from within and to whom the concept of food-induced mood swings is completely unknown. It is this healthy eating habit that gives Costa Ricans a high life expectancy of 78.5 years on average.

Slow Pace, Low Stress

By Costa Rican standards, rushing is synonymous with rudeness. A slow-paced lifestyle, on the other hand, allows them to relax, look around, and appreciate the nice things around them.

Living to Please Others

When you are surrounded by people who are eager to please you and are careful not to hurt other’s sentiments even unknowingly, what can you expect other than complete bliss?

Wouldn’t you like to visit this paradise called Costa Rica at least once in your lifetime? The happiness here is contagious. We won’t be surprised if you never wish to leave the place and if you decide to make Costa Rica your second home, contact us. Our luxurious single-family villas will make every bit of your Costa Rica experience even more memorable. Call Arenal Hills at 1-844-MY-HILLS today.

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Topics: arenal hills, costa rica, Costa Rica In The News

U.S.-Based Real Estate Developer Puts The Environment First In Developing Arenal Hills In San Ramón

Posted by shieldwatch on Apr 5, 2017 10:12:21 AM

When it comes to developing the land, Costa Rica is a country deeply committed to preserving its natural resources – particularly its wildlife and its resources. This was a commitment embraced by Gerald Baum, president of Florida-based Costa Rica Land Capital Partners, LLC, and developer of Arenal Hills, located in Tres Esquinas, San Ramón.

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Topics: arenal hills spring resorts, Arenal Hills Vacation Villas, club vida, Costa Rica In The News


Posted by shieldwatch on Mar 30, 2017 6:00:38 AM

Traveling solo is one of the best ways to discover yourself and see the world at your own pace. If adventure is on your mind, then Costa Rica is the perfect destination for you. The ‘happiest country in the world’ has been an American tourist hotspot for decades. Surf the Pacific Coast or go white water rafting on the Pacuare River, take a day trip in the cloud forest or spend time in the beauty of the Arenal Volcano – the choices are endless. Traveling solo, however, comes with its own set of challenges. The good news is you can easily dodge these by keeping the following tips in mind:

Take American Currency on Your Trip

Most Americans who travel to Costa Rica commit a rookie mistake – they exchange all their money for Costa Rican colones. This is a bad idea for several reasons. First, the exchange rate is horrible. Next, due to the influx of American tourists, lots of restaurants and shops in Costa Rica, especially the ones in the tourist areas, accept US currency. However, if you plan on taking the public transportation, you might need the Costa Rican coins.There’s an easy way to get them rather than visiting the currency exchange store. Pay for something in dollars you buy and receive the change in colones. You’ll have a small stack of coins in no time. See, it’s that simple!

Carry Mosquito Repellent

A vacation in Costa Rica means exploring a mélange of terrain and landscapes. You would definitely want to carry your mosquito repellent spray, especially if a cloud forest trip is on your list. Moreover, it’s a good idea to wear long-sleeved clothes and bottoms when you’re hiking.

Drink Plenty of Water

The climate of Costa Rica is different from the US, and you will have to drink sufficient amount of water to avoid heat exhaustion. It is easy to forget about drinking water when you’re preoccupied with sightseeing activities. Set the alarm on your phone to be on the safe side. On hot days, make sure you limit your exposure to the sun, wear sunscreen, and dress appropriately.

Traveling solo in Costa Rica can be so much fun. In case you want to make the country your second home, call us at Arenal Hills on 1-844-My-Hills.

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, traveling to Costa Rica


Posted by shieldwatch on Mar 27, 2017 3:00:10 AM

If you visit Costa Rica often, chances are you have fallen in love with the land. What’s the next step? Well, you could try applying for residency. This is a major step, and it indicates your commitment to staying in the country for a long time. Before you hire a lawyer to look after the residency process on your behalf, you need to have a clear idea about the types of residency available. This blog will discuss the most important residency types that people consider in Costa Rica.


This type of residency is applicable only when you are the recipient of a certain amount of retirement money or pension every month.


You can opt for this type of Costa Rican residency when you have invested a specific amount of money in the country. This could be either through the opening of a business, purchasing a piece of real estate, or any other form of a sizeable investment.


Rentista is a residency category that you are applicable for only when you have put in a specific amount of money in a bank in Costa Rica for renting and living long-term.

Permanent Residency vs. Temporary Residency

The above mentioned three residency types, when granted, necessitate that you be a temporary resident of Costa Rica for a period of three years. Only then will you be allowed to file for permanent residency.

Compared to temporary residency, permanent residency has several other benefits to offer. For starters, permanent residency provides you with all the rights of a citizen, minus the voting rights. You are also allowed to legally work as an employee in Costa Rica. On the other hand, temporary residents are capable of running or owning a business in the country, but they need to hire employees for labor. It is important for both permanent and temporary residents to pay into the country’s healthcare system, known as the Caja.

Alternative Method for Permanent Residency

It is possible to achieve the permanent resident status without first having temporary residency. This is known as Residencia Permanente PorVinculo. It requires you to have a first-degree blood relative like a child, a sibling, or a parent, who is Costa Rican.

Becoming a permanent Costa Rican resident is a wonderful idea. Do you know what the next best thing is? Making Costa Rica your second home. Consider living in one of our luxury villas to experience five-star comfort during your stay. Contact Arenal Hills today by calling 1-844-MY-HILLS and we will love to have you as our neighbor.

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News


Posted by shieldwatch on Mar 14, 2017 3:01:03 AM

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, traveling to Costa Rica, Visit in Costa Rica


Posted by shieldwatch on Feb 13, 2017 2:02:19 AM

“What’s exotic must be exorbitant” – that’s what many people think about paradises like Costa Rica. However, you must validate the truth of the statement before jumping on that bandwagon. In fact, you can experience Costa Rica’s verdant rainforests, rich animal life, stunning beaches, breathtaking waterfalls, museum tours, self-guided hiking, and local events without breaking your bank. Here are three things you can in Costa Rica on a backpacker’s budget:

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, Life In costa Rica


Posted by shieldwatch on Dec 26, 2016 3:01:12 AM

Believe it or not, even the best beaches and the tallest mountains would not impress an adventure seeker as much as river rafting, skydiving, or say, bungee jumping. If that sounds like you, then it is time to visit Costa Rica. You could live in the country for many years and still not be able to explore all of its adventure, because the possibilities are so rich in variety. What if you are here for only a few days on a vacation? We know you will come back for more. For this time, don’t miss the following few activities:

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News

Investing in Costa Rican Real Estate

Posted by Arenal Hills on Jul 2, 2015 9:56:58 AM

Costa Rica, one of the world’s most economically and politically stable countries, is rich in culture and natural resources. With its current calm political climate, real estate experts and researchers consider Costa Rica to be a safe bet for investors.

Experienced real estate investors know that timing is of paramount importance. New investors are always encouraged to stay safe and avoid unnecessary risks when it comes to purchasing property around the globe. If a potential investor does not keep his or her eyes closely on the scene, they can miss out on a prosperous opportunity. Costa Rica is at the top of the list when it comes to hot investment properties today.

And here’s why…

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, Expats, Global Recession, Guanacaste Gold Coast, Investment Opportunities

Costa Rica Renowned for its Health and Happiness

Posted by Arenal Hills on Mar 24, 2015 10:34:41 AM

The blue Caribbean waters, lush green forests, and scenic vistas draw thousands of visitors to Costa Rica every year. Some of these fortunate souls never leave this little slice of paradise. For all its remarkable aesthetic virtues, however, Costa Rica has also earned itself the title of “The Happiest Country on Earth.” In this entry, we’ll take a look at what makes Costa Rica so happy.

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, Happy Planet Index, Healthcare, Life In costa Rica, Renewable Energy