Costa Rica is One of the Top Retirement Destinations in the World

Costa Rica has been ranked as one of the top retirement destinations in the world, year after year. To those who have been dreaming of owning one of our luxury branded Rainforest Residences at Botánika Osa Peninsula, Curio Collection by Hilton, the following is an informative depiction of life in this magnificent paradise. The simplicity and rich lifestyle that this region affords expats from all walks of life, is unlike anything anywhere.

What is the Annual Global Retirement Index?

The Retirement Index is a comprehensive and in-depth survey designed to sift through the wealth of opportunity the world offers, and helps pinpoint the best destinations on the globe for those looking to retire abroad. It factors and rates key elements including:

  • Renting, owning, and investing in the country
  • Benefits and discounts to residents
  • Visas and residence procedures
  • Cost of living
  • Fitting in within the country          
  • Entertainment and amenities
  • Healthcare
  • Healthy lifestyle
  • Development
  • Climate Governance 

Costa Rica consistently ranks amongst the best places to live based on those key elements. As a matter of fact, when it comes to renting, owning, and investing in the country, no other country on earth tops Costa Rica! The same goes for cost of living, fitting in within the country, entertainment and amenities, healthcare, and healthy lifestyle. 

The country has a stable democracy and those who have been here have witnessed firsthand the peace-loving culture where “Pura Vida” (which translates into pure life) is the standard greeting to say hello, good-bye, and no worries. Costa Rica abolished their army in 1948 and pledged instead to use that money to budget for education and healthcare. Often called the “Switzerland of Central America” it is known for its safety, neutrality, and good banking.

Overall, Costa Ricans are wonderful people, eager to share the magic of their culture with foreigners. Many individuals from across the globe are exploring alternatives for living better on less money, and in Costa Rica a couple can live comfortably for around $2,000 a month. 

Costa Rica also has an outdoor loving culture—with activities from fishing, golfing, and horseback riding to hiking, diving, and yoga. Plus, there are less processed foods, and more healthy choices with an abundance of locally grown fruits, vegetables, organic eggs, and endless seafood. Most of the people who have moved to Costa Rica have shed unwanted weight, are taking less prescription drugs, and overall feel better.

But when it comes to living better, it is not just for the pure economics of spending less and getting more. Expats in Costa Rica are statistically amongst the happiest in the world, and one of the motivating factors most expressed is simply that there appears to be an increasing lack of civility back home, and, in particular, the way older individuals are treated.


Botánika Osa Peninsula, Curio Collection by Hilton is a real estate offering of luxury branded hotel residences that promises to fit a variety of lifestyles. The professional management program associated with Botánika takes care of every aspect of home ownership, and even helps you literally pay the bills. 

Costa Rica’s land mass makes up but a small dot on the world map, and the Osa Peninsula is hardly visible. It is indeed a phenomenon that on this small footprint you will find “the most biologically intense place on Earth” according to National Geographic. Our real estate offering is in this tranquil spot surrounded by lush forests, crashing waterfalls, and gentle streams where unusual wildlife abounds.

Factors that differentiate us from other retirement destinations include:

* Proximity to the USA and Canada – with many direct flights from two international airports (and a third in the works); you are close to the U.S.A and Canada, (less than three hours from Miami).

* Excellent weather – from the temperate Central Valley to the beautiful tropical beaches, there is a climate to satisfy everyone.

* Top-quality healthcare – The World Health Organization praises Costa Rica for its health care system. It is ranked better than the U.S., despite spending 87 percent less on healthcare per capita. Costa Rica’s national health care system, which all residents must join, will cost you about $100 per month and that fee covers doctors’ visits and prescriptions. This national health care system is ranked among the best in the world. Of course, private insurance is also available, and most plans cover dental, optometry, and cosmetic surgery in case of an accident. Private medical insurance typically costs $100 to $200 per month.

* No other Latin American country has experienced the peaceful history and democratic stability of Costa Rica it has no army or military. Sociologists from the Happy Planet Index have written that Costa Ricans report “the highest satisfaction of life.” Canada ranked #58; USA ranked #104. Costa Ricans have the second-highest average life expectancy of the Americas, second to Canada.

* All the comforts of home – modern shopping malls and world-class hospitals. Reliable high-speed internet is available just about everywhere.  Low, low taxes- there is no income tax on foreign-earned income.

* A built-in community of English-speaking locals and expats – It’s said that more than 11,000 retires from the USA currently live in Costa Rica. With almost no pollution and lots of clean water and fresh air, Costa Rica is one of the only countries in the world to reverse deforestation by planting more trees than it harvests.

* Costa Rica boasts a remarkably high literacy rate and many of its citizens are bilingual. The implications of an educated population are all encompassing. Not just in the fact that it represents a well-informed workforce attracting many international companies, but that an educated culture reaches out to the lifestyles of many other cultures. 


Where We're Located

The future for real estate in Costa Rica is very bright…and only getting brighter. With many American and Canadian buyers entering this market. They consist mostly of the upper middle class in North America looking for a second investment with income potential in the vacation rental market. They want an investment which has value, quality, and performance to bolster their retirement strategy. All regions in Costa Rica report that the market projections will continue into the next decade. After all, Costa Rica is ranked the number 1 tourist destination of all the countries in Latin America and foreign direct investment per capita is one of the highest in Latin America. 

As to the most frequently asked question: How much does it cost to live here, the long and short answer to the question is: “As much as you want to spend.” It really helps that the ego is very rarely seen in this country. There are no social pressures to dress a certain way, drive a certain car, or spend money on material items for the sole purpose of prestige. This is a very practical culture, and the values are grounded in spirit much more than in materialistic possessions. Most families travel by bicycle, which keeps us fit and at the same time has no negative connotation as to what we can and cannot afford. Nobody really cares; and everybody greets us warmly, graciously and with respect.

It is simply the Pura Vida approach to life which refers to the uniquely Costa Rican approach to everyday existence: a laid-back, easy-going, warm, friendly attitude that pervades everyday interactions. It is this attitude that will reduce your stress levels dramatically! Pura Vida = The Good Life.

When it comes to the cost of groceries, a good rule of thumb is to budget about half of what you would normally spend at home. You eat much healthier in Costa Rica for a fraction of what you would pay to do so at home. Locally grown, fresh produce is abundant and very inexpensive. 

Where else could you spoil yourself with a salon haircut, manicure, or pedicure for $5-$10? Would you like a maid to clean your house, or perhaps a cook to prepare your meals? Try around $14.00 per day for these services.


One Final Note

You have an opportunity to invest in your lifestyle and health, in combination with experiencing Costa Rica’s breath-taking natural beauty and an affordable cost of living in the “Pura Vida” lifestyle. So much unspoiled beauty is not accidental. The Costa Rican government is proud of the country’s natural assets and is committed to protecting and preserving both the environment and wildlife. This is demonstrated by the fact that over 25% of the land mass of the country is dedicated as National Park or federally protected area. We at Crocodile Bay Marina share that commitment in our new development plans.

In summation: people in this corner of the world are happier, healthier, and able to live a more enriching life surrounded by dramatic scenery and sunshine. It’s really not surprising that so many are eager to move here. Come and feel rejuvenated and surround yourself with exotic plants, fresh air, warm salt water and the wildlife that we share it all with. Wake up to the most natural alarm clock on earth, the sound of the Howler Monkeys and Scarlet Macaws.

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