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Anyone from Atenas? Need information

Hello everyone. I got a job opportunity in Costa Rica which allows me to work 90% from home, 10% from San Jose office. I will relocate with family over the next year (two kids age 6 and 9) and our choice so far has been Atenas. It is fairly small, read really good reviews about it, cheap and still close to everything including San José.

I have looked at schools and we will probably go with Green Valley private school in Atenas.

Now to my question, is anyone living or have lived in Atenas? Pros and cons? We are a simple family with not too high expectations who wants to avoid San José if possible.

Cheers!

It is very important to find out, in advance, whether  your potential employer will provide you with a work visa.

Sorry, can't offer any help regarding living in Atenas.

They are taking care of everything, yes.

That's good. Important to have it, on your arrival. Some companies 'promises' them and then the work visa never comes through...

Good luck!

Rawbiz :

Hello everyone. I got a job opportunity in Costa Rica which allows me to work 90% from home, 10% from San Jose office. I will relocate with family over the next year (two kids age 6 and 9) and our choice so far has been Atenas. It is fairly small, read really good reviews about it, cheap and still close to everything including San José.

I have looked at schools and we will probably go with Green Valley private school in Atenas.

Now to my question, is anyone living or have lived in Atenas? Pros and cons? We are a simple family with not too high expectations who wants to avoid San José if possible.

Cheers!

Hola Rawbiz,

Welcome to Expat.com!

If you haven't already read it on this site, most expats here would strongly recommend that you spend some time in whatever cities you're considering before making a decision.  We all like something different and have various expectations.

For me, Atenas is too hot during the dry season.  I live only about 1/2 hour from Atenas.  I live at a slightly higher elevation just outside of San Ramon, Alajuela.  In the dry season there can be a 15+ degree temperature difference between here and there.  We usually stay around 82 degrees and it gets into the 90's there on a relatively regular basis.  At the same time, that may be what you prefer.  Personal choice.

Also, again personal opinion, Atenas has become quite congested  and I find the Ticos there to be less friendly than other areas.  And, too many Gringos for me.   :o   You will also find that housing is more expensive in that area - no idea why.

I've recommended it before and if I was in your situation, I'd look at Palmares.  Nice size town, very friendly, perfect weather, very little fog and has what I have been told is a very good private school.  A friend near me sends her 9 year old daughter there.

- Expat Dave
Exapt.com Team Member

Rawbiz,

We are about 3 weeks from making our move to Atenas with our 3 children (14, 5, and 2), and I'm also mostly WFH with occasional trips to the office in the US. We want to be less than an hour to the airport, and we centered our search on Atenas and Grecia. We chose Atenas because we really liked GVS, and there weren't any schools we really liked in Grecia...plus, it was bigger and busier there. I think we could have taken more time and looked further like San Ramon, Palmares, etc...but we did fall in love with Atenas.

That said, we're renting for at least the first few years, and so we'll have some flexibility if we change our minds. I don't have much feedback beyond that, since we haven't actually moved, but it sounds like we came to about the same conclusions in similar circumstances.

Good luck!

We have retired to Atenas from Phoenix for over five years now and love it here.
Best information for gringos: "Atenas Costa Rico Info" Facebook group here with tons of ongoing info about the community and activities. Very large (thousands) ex-pat community in Atenas with most very helpful and lots of ongoing social activities. About 35 minutes by car to Juan Santanaria International Airport, About 40 minute to downtown San Jose. About 45 minutes to the beach at Jaco. Medical: good local physicians and OK dentists. Superb (I am a physician) hospitals in San Jose and Escazu ( just west of San Jose) and in Escazu, a multi-billion dollar, 400 shop, 3 story shopping mall to rival anywhere in the developed world.
Climate: wonderful! Our experience is 63-88 degrees year round. We do have refrigerated air conditioning in bedrooms but really not needed. Our home is walking distance (under 1/2 mile) to town and I have lost over 70 pounds in five years here.

Atenas is a great place for soo many reasons.

Doc, which are the superb hospitals?

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