Costa Rica was one of the first getaway outposts for semi-expat Americans, thanks to its year-round tropical weather. It's consistently rated by the Happy Planet Index as the happiest country in the world with safe streets, cheap cost of living, beautiful parks, dozens of sandy beaches, excellent medical care, a thriving economy and only a hop, skip and a jump to the United States. Thanks to these many perks, about 70,000 Americans have moved to Costa Rica and thousands more have purchased vacation homes. One of those is actor Mel Gibson.
While scouting locations for his film “Apocalypto” in 2006, Gibson bought an entire 403-acre beachfront jungle on the Nicoya Peninsula. His estate includes three homes separated by an extensive canopy of trees stretching across the entire property. Each of the two smaller single-story homes has two bedrooms, vaulted ceilings, kitchens, verandas, air conditioning, and their own swimming pools and BBQ areas. Casa Barrigona has its own poolside cottage and Casa Dorada has a loft, giving each additional sleeping space.
The main two-story hacienda-style residence, Casa Guanacaste, overlooks the long, wide beach and has seven bedrooms, eight bathrooms, a large courtyard and pool and multiple terraces affording both ocean and jungle views. All three villas are built with Costa Rican wood, with Spanish and Italian tiles and red-barrel tile roofs that create an extra-tropical ambiance.
Located on Costa Rica’s northern Pacific coast, beach lovers will find white sand beaches along with nearby steep cliffs. Animal lovers will certainly experience their fair share of howler monkeys, and perhaps get a glimpse of an ocelot or sea turtle right on the estate's private beach.
Listed by: Robert Davey, Plantacion Properties; Rick Moeser, Christie’s International Real Estate
Listed for: $29.75 million
Photo credit: Christie’s International Real Estate, TopTenRealEstateDeals.com