Renovations

We are on our final countdown, here in Idaho… in one week from tomorrow, we will be boarding a plane with lots of bags, two cats, sunscreen and our vitamix, heading to our new home.


The last couple of weeks here have been incredibly bittersweet, as we say goodbye to friends and family, all the while getting anxious about all that is to come.

One of the things we are looking forward to the most is seeing, first-hand, all the work that has been done to Casa Kaiki since we bought it.

While much of the property was finished, and done so beautifully, about half of the property and its living spaces were in need of some serious TLC. So much so that we would have been unable to do it ourselves and we were lucky to find Carlos, our contractor.


Casa Kaiki is settled on just shy of an acre of land, half a mile from the beach. The beach itself is called Playa Avellanas; however, there is no town, perse. The Playa Avellanas community is made up of homes, several small hostels and hotels, and about the same number of cafes and quaint restaurants.

Our home is made up of two separate properties: House one, which has three rooms, all with their own bathroom and patio, and a kitchen.


The other property, House two, is just across the yard, and has two rooms, again with their own bathrooms and a kitchen. We live in house one, in one of the rooms, thus leaving us four additional rooms for guests. Each bedroom has a full bed and a twin bed, so two or three people can be accommodated easily.

House one is more or less ready to go, save a few minor improvements and changes. Carlos and his crew are working on House two daily. The room that has seen the most renovation lately is located in House two and is called the Canopy Room, as it is located on the second story and feels like a snug and cozy tree house. The ceilings are extremely high and the bright walls offer such peace and tranquilty. When we first saw this room, in July, Scott and I wanted to run screaming in the other direction.
But it truly has been amazing what Carlos has done to it over the last few months.


Unfortunately, photos of the interiors will have to wait a week, but we’ve been so excited to share the progress with everyone. Pura vida 😉

 

Day Tripping (Part 1)

Oddly enough, Scott and I have very limited Costa Rica experience thus far. I’ve been there once (!) and Scott has been there twice at this point. I know that it seems extreme to buy a business and a home in a country that we have barely explored, but that’s part of the adventure, I guess. There is so much more of Costa Rica yet to be discovered by us, and we are itching for it.

While on our “scouting” trip in July, we high-tailed it to a few different towns and beaches to attempt to soak up as much of the Pura Vida that we possibly could in such a short time period.

We took a drive down to Samara, a small beach town on the Nicoya peninsula and were so glad that we did. Far less tourists find their way here and the energy is fantastic. We stayed in a lush bed and breakfast, full of flowering native plants and trees full of howler monkeys. The beach nearby, Carillo Beach was spectacular.

We were able to sip on fresh Pipa and swim in the warm water without the crowds of some of the bigger cities.

We then headed inland, into the cloud forest, to a place called Bijagua: a VERY small town, that serves as a great jumping-off point for adventure in the mountains and nearby national parks.

On our way back to Avellanas, we stumbled upon the waterfall, Llanos de Cortez. It’s majestic beauty sneaks up on you, as it is a little difficult to find and appears out of nowhere.

Hopefully “Day Tripping Part 2” can include Tenorio National Park, Monteverde and Arenal!

Grow Your Own

One of the things that sold Scott and me on our Costa Rican home, even from afar, before having seen it, was the mature fruit trees. Not only to be able to offer fresh, organic and local fruit and vegetables to our guests, but to have them for ourselves on a daily basis is something worth celebrating!

Papayas will be ready in weeks, limes are ready now, and the mangoes and plantains will teach us patience while we wait for them to be ready, later in the year. On the list of future planting are mamones trees, guava and guayaba. Some fruit trees take up to seven years to bear, so we will get started as soon as possible!

The Heat Is On

While Scott and I don’t arrive in Costa Rica for another few weeks, so much work is in progress at Casa Kaiki.

While Scott was there at the end of August, together with our contractor, they made a large list of projects that needed to be accomplished as soon as possible. Over the last few weeks our crew has laid concrete for new patios, sanded and constructed new decking, finished roofs and eaves, and tidied things up tremendously.

As every day passes, we get closer to our arrival date, in mid October. And we become more and more anxious to see the work done first hand. Not only are we so excited to settle into our home there, but we are thrilled to share that home with our guests.

Our Airbnb link will be published on Oct 19, when booking can begin, as early as Nov 1. Stay tuned!

Vida Y Salud Huerta Organica

While we have already faced several disheartening and exhausting challenges in readying our business and home abroad, we have also had many positive interactions and have begun building exciting new relationships. While Scott was traveling in Costa Rica in August, he was thrilled to meet Gustavo, a fellow resident of Playa Avellanas. Gustavo runs Vida Y Salud Huerta Organica, an organic farm just down the road from our house. Gustavo was generous enough to give Scott and his mother an impromptu tour of the farm and share his farming techniques, which honor the Mayan farming circles of hundreds of years ago.

While Gustavo brings much of his produce to local markets, he also has a pick-up and delivery system that we are so anxious to use. He also has offered to share with us his knowledge of local crops and small scale gardening so that we are able to set up raised beds and offer our guests home-grown tomatoes, squash, herbs and other greens. While Guanacaste is known as the driest area of the country, we are lucky to have our own well, water tank, and rain water recycling system. So hopefully we are left with enough water to water our crops effectively.

One major thing about which Scott and I have wondered is how we will be able to maintain our healthy diets while abroad. We have lived abroad in the past, in Germany and Mexico, and it has never been particularly easy. But with the help of our fruit trees, Gustavo’s farm and copious amounts of gallo pinto, I think we’ll be able to eat like sustainable kings 🙂

Check out Vida y Salud’s Facebook page and give them a “like.” https://casakaiki.wordpress.com/2016/09/12/vida-salud/

Beach WODing

Leaving our home in Boise, Idaho will be a major bitter-sweetness. Even if it’s just for five to six months at a time, being so far from our home will be challenging, as we love Boise tremendously. My family is here, and Scott’s is only a plane ride away. We have a gigantic trail system right out our back door. We are near a number of hot springs, camp sites, lakes, mountains, our favorite restaurants, bars and cafes. We have a tremendous amount of good friends and a gym that is our home away from home. Boise’s Arbor CrossFit will still be there when we return home in the spring, but it doesn’t make it any easier to leave for such a long chunk of time each Autumn.

 

When Scott and I were visiting Costa Rica last, in July, we were walking through Tamarindo late one night and were peeking inside all the cozy restaurants, office buildings, bars and shops, really trying to imagine what a life would be like in such a foreign land. Living so close to Tamarindo could be nice, we thought, but we were still uneasy about all of it. We glanced inside an industrial looking space and immediately the Rogue rigs, wall ball targets and barbells stopped us in our tracks. A CrossFit gym. But, what is it like, we wondered. And it looked far from being ready to open. Inside, two men were bent over, sweating and working hard to sweep floors, patch a ceiling, and unpack heavy plates and kettle bells. They waved us in. It turned out that we had stumbled upon Tamarindo’s newest CrossFit gym, set to open the next day. It was hard to imagine how this dusty work-in-progress space could be turned into a functioning gym overnight. Owner Nick invited us to come by the next morning to complete one of the first WODs of Pacific Wave CrossFit. Long story short, we woke up bright and early, participated in the WOD, coached by Nick, and as we said goodbye and walked out the doors, Scott and I looked at each other, and said, “Yea, ok. We could be alright living here,” with wry smiles and a hint of embarrassment that access to a CrossFit gym has come to have such a large bearing on our lives.

When we left in July, we stayed in touch with Pacific Wave and were excited to get back. Since Scott has been in Avellanas, he’s been able to pop into Pacific Wave twice and work out with Nick and his girlfriend, Sam. Sunday’s WOD was on the beach, this morning’s was at their indoor space. We are thrilled to become members as soon as we set up permanent residence, in October.

We highly recommend Pacific Wave to any of our guests that stay with us. There is a shuttle that can take you into town, that leaves at two different times during the day. Otherwise, as Scott and I will be going there often, we can work with you to help you get in a great workout during your vacation.

 

 

It’s Official

We are now officially owners of our beautiful dream, Casa Kaiki. Papers have been signed, keys, (a multitude), have been handed over, and the work begins. We knew that upon purchase of the property, we would be taking on a huge project including roof repairs, tiling, landscaping, plumbing, and furnishing, just to name a few. And that was just what we noticed at first glance. New projects have presented themselves, but I think all the toil and hard work with make us fall in love with our new home even more. Add new concrete siding to the list. Better wifi. Finding the correct locks to all of these freaking keys. And the list goes on.

But in between the sweat, exasperation and trips to the store, there are Imperiales at Lola’s, falafel from Falafel Bar in Tamarindo, and home-brewed, rich Costa Rican pour over coffee. It’s the small things that remind us why all this work truly is worth it after all.

 

Bienvenidos

Our closing date is set and is approaching quickly! It’s hard to believe that very soon, we will be opening up our bed and breakfast, our labor of love, and hosting guests from around the world.

It was a big leap of faith (and guts) to quit our jobs, buy a somewhat dilapidated bed and breakfast in another country, with the intention of packing up the cats, beach towels and protein powder come October, and immigrating down south. It is not without fear that we are making such a jump, but everything in our hearts has told us that this is the right thing to do.

We feel so lucky to offer such lovely accommodations in the most magical setting of Playa Avellanas, Costa Rica, from November of this year. Please contact if you have any questions about booking, or if you need help planning a trip. We would love to help build fun and unique itineraries so that you can enjoy Costa Rica to its fullest.

Contact us directly for booking, or you can book through airbnb.com, beginning in late October-early November. We will be updating this website often, so watch for new announcements and more concrete opening dates.