Wednesday, 25 April 2012

A handful of those 'colourful' moments over the last few months...

As Marvin & Alex and their team continue to add the final touches up at the project, back in the studio at last, I have been able to start uploading the hundreds of my photos (shot on a couple of my Pro cameras - bearing in mind that up till now, everything you've seen has been courtesy of my iphone!)

So much more to come - but here are a few from one of the first memory cards!

Playa Tortuga

Playa Pinuelas at sunset

My old friend 'suerte' - the Toyota Hilux who never let me down!

Middle of March - with the roof still not yet on, the sun illuminates the lush valley in front of our Jungle Villa

Seems like a lifetime ago that I put that 'Sold' sign up!

Looking down on the Jungle Villa from above - 

4x4 or golf buggies - the best way to travel around in the South Pacific zone of Costa Rica

El 'perico' is born in the middle of summer on our doorstep!

Monday, 23 April 2012

End of week 16 and the majority of the wrap-around deck is in place!

Friday afternoon - Semana 16 comes to an end. Photos courtesy of my wonderful neighbour Zeger!

Swimming pool store room starting to take shape.

The final pieces of teak are slotted together as the wrap-around deck is finished later Friday afternoon. Next step will be the installation of the sliding doors, now that the floor has been poured.

The front deck is now finished.

Side deck, which hangs dramatically over the jungle canopy, is now almost complete...

Monday, 16 April 2012

The first layer of stucco goes in upstairs

Coming from the main entrance
The kitchen

Looking into the jungle from the lounge/kitchen. This will be a deck

The lounge/kitchen. Ocean view

Stunning roof we have there!!

Working on the kitchen

Bathroom sink made with bamboo

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Week 14 - Construction continues while en route back to Europe

Currently en route 'back home' to Europe although after five months bumping between the dusty village of Coronado in my ever so faithful pickup (who is now officially called 'suerte') and the amazingly quick and almost complete Pura Vida Ecolodge Jungle Villa project, the emotions ran high as I said my goodbyes to the villagers, neighbours, the once shy younguns, the colourful houses and abundant nature, even the early rising parrots seemed to arrive for my send off - "5 weeks and we'll be back" I told them between handshakes and embraces. hopefully to add the final touches and dress our new Jungle Villa for its first guests in June!

The dusk before, up at the project, I had said my goodbyes to the team. El 'jefe' Marvin cheekily promising completion within the month. Alex posing some last minute questions on finishes, final positions and sizes. Pencil scriblings with 'Perra' clarifying the final touches of our contemporary 'mesa/isla' in the kitchen/dare I say dining room. A low key exit of different handshakes and requests to bring Spanish (or even English) ladies back with me on my return. Diego carving out yet another bambu beer mug, William shaving in the mirror of a dusty motorbike, while Lelo y Paisa patiently tried to kick-start their ride home. Chef Pinpin slops the frijoles onto 11 ominously balanced plates scattered around 'la rancha'. Out of Marvins sight, the normal 'end of day' activities were slowly exhaled by Jupah and Alan as reds and yellows seemingly melt into yet another fantastic sunset.

Five months have passed remarkably quickly and just as the stress and anxiety is gradually replaced by genuine excitement and pride, my return flight beckons. The next five weeks will be enjoyed - (or maybe suffered) via skype and regular engineer & architect visits - as well as my increasingly helpful and 'solo bueno' neighbours who promise to continue my photographic reportage of the last few 'pasos'

After a shaky start, our last week before 'Samana Santa' came to a nice end. Palmex completed their super speedy roof instalation, just in the nick of time as the seasons start to change and the first rains arrive. Our palapa or 'palma' roof looks beautiful and really compliments the rustic and somewhat irregular bambu or guadua structure. Fascinatingly, its colours seem to change throughout the day, depending on the sunlight cast, but it pleasingly seems to blend into the rugged surroundings. Still to come are the 'tapicheles' (the details of cedazo, teak and ornemental bambu that cover or rather 'seal' the triangles at the ends of the main living area's roof).

With the permits of our plunge pool coming through just in time, the peones got to work preparing the space at the back of the side deck. When finished it's orientation will be stunning, seemingly hanging over the jungle canopy itself with the best sunset views of the retreat.

Downstairs, our 'espresso cream' stucco finish is starting to look perfect, after various aplication experiments by Perra and Alex, it would seem the best combo was lijando the concrete finish, 2 'manos' of pasta lisa, sellador to take off or ratger seal the chalky finish and then the stucco itself. The nuetral colour works so well with the ornamental bambu cieling with all the real vivid colour coming from the jungle.

So, it would seem on the day of my departure, all is 'mas o menos' under control. Sometimes there aren't the appropriate words to describe a situation or an emotion and besides,sometimes words just don't translate between the languages. 'Carinyo' is the overiding sentiment. Regardless of the non-sensical beaurocracy and the non-existant concept of time, the 3 plates of 'arroz y frijoles' (rice and beans) daily and the overly laid back attitude, the measuring straight lines with clearly bent bits of wood and the 7 sets of architectural plans all jumbled into 1 crumpled confusion, the dubious improvisation and the long days, the heavy rain and the scorching afternoons, as I take off from San Jose airport, I have a beaming smile, for the time I have experienced and the people that I have met. Ojala hablara 'los maes' Ingles, asi me entenderian...

Gracias a todos, una experiencia, aunque no sea completa, inolvidable... Proper photos to come soon!!!!