“I traded all that in for the pura vida lifestyle.” How many times has each of us read that statement?
In my case, I traded one paradise for another. Having lived in Muskoka, Canada and selling real estate there, I came to Costa Rica for some new adventures. Traveling through most of Costa Rica, those adventures started on week one.
Where do I go?
I was born into a trucking family, with driving in my blood, and touring around Costa Rica remains one of my hobbies.
Where do I go? The answer is probably one way that I differ from most people. Immersing myself in a variety of Costa Rican cultures, has been both interesting and rewarding. Starting my very first week in Costa Rica, from taking some time to operate a business in San José, and then ultimately doing what I knew I would do — real estate — it has been the people and places that give me the best memories.
You won’t find that in a travel brochure
Spending days and nights in Ticos homes is always a treat. There is always a pot of rice and some beans ready for family and friends. I remember the night I was asked to stand up and take a bow three times, just for spending the day in the sugar cane town of Pitahaya. Another memory is of watching the oxcart parade in San José, buying dynamite, then spending the day digging gold in Las Juntas. There was my afternoon with a group of Ticos at their friend’s waterfall near Turrialba. I spent one night at a coffee plantation — what a great family they were! Volunteering to teach English in Coco was another unforgettable experience.
Then of course, there’s fishing, walking the beach, monkeys, mud baths, catching a world class ocean view, and everything in between. I could fill this magazine.
Oh, and that first week? Traveling through the mountains south of Cartago, I stopped for a coffee. A young couple had just leased the restaurant. A coffee to go turned into an hour of communicating without knowing each other’s language. One of the best hours of my life transpired with this young Tico couple determined to make their new venture a success. They reminded me of me. You will not find that in a travel brochure.
Who am I?
My name is Theo Veenstra, and I was born in Brampton, Ontario, Canada to Dutch immigrants. My first vacation in Costa Rica was February 2008. Then during one adventure driving a car from Canada to Costa Rica in 2012, I decided to also become an immigrant and make Costa Rica home. By 2014 it was time to live here full time, later becoming a Canadian citizen who also holds Costa Rican residency.
How do I look at real estate? What is the goal? It’s strictly investment and business, but then the returns need to make sense, of course. That said, I was lucky enough to start selling real estate in the idyllic cottage country of Muskoka in northern Ontario. The clientele included both full-time retirees and seasonal families.
While working with an older demographic, one thing stood out more than everything else: LIFE. Whether buying or selling a home, people wanted help with a piece of their life. I have never forgotten how important that is, and I base myself around helping people accomplish just that.
How? It is quite simple. Everything starts with being in the best environment available. I picked Playas del Coco and the Papagayo area, then joined the best group of realtors I could find. That is the Tres Amigos Realty group.
Why? Nothing is more important than surrounding each property deal with great professionals. Together they have incredible knowledge, great contacts, and operate an exceptional database. And they are also most willing to share their knowledge.
Another plus is this area being 20 minutes from Liberia International Airport, including its direct flights. Accessible medical care, options for schools, shopping, restaurants, and entertainment lets me hand my friends and clients a gift basket in a foreign country.
Check the testimonials on my website and it will hit you: www.letsbuycostarica.com. Tres Amigos Realty Group and Papagayo are the right place for me.
What is most important??
People come to paradise for many reasons: sun, surf, ecosystems, beaches, fishing, birds, adventure, escape from the cold or to relax. There are 1,000 equally good reasons, each one valid.
A couple of things are true — each of us shares something in common, and it can be hard to explain our experiences in Costa Rica to others. For me, what is most important is probably also what keeps me here. I learn so much about this culture, and in turn, learn about myself … like riding a bike for the first time. Lastly, there’s that stuff they call snow. It looks a lot better from here.
Feel free to contact me anytime.