Writers’ Retreat 2017!

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Norma’s is happy to announce our first ever writers’ retreat in January 2017. Inspired by NaNoWriMo and by our own visitors, we think Norma’s would be a great place to get away, write in peace, and connect with other writers.

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The first step is planning based on what you want in a retreat. To begin your application, visit this form here. No deposits or writing samples are currently required.

We are accepting writers of fiction, poetry, nonfiction, screenplays, plays …if it’s written, we accept it.

We appreciate your support, and this early application will be open until February 2016. At that point, writing samples will be required, and an itinerary will be solidified.

Pura Vida!

Lisa Marie
Norma’s granddaughter

 

 

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Faster, Stronger Wifi.

We created a survey three months ago about what our visitors would want most in their trip to Costa Rica.

Here’s a rundown of our results:

  • Away, but not cut off — 92% said that Internet access was either a deal breaker or extremely important.
  • Lone rangers — 77% indicated that group activities were nice but not necessary, or not necessary at all.
  • Building Trust — 83% said that reviews from past guests were extremely important in deciding where to stay.

Some quotes:

“I want space to roam without a schedule.”
“I like to explore on my own, with the option of group activities.”
“I want transportation and good food!”

Some amenities surveyors asked for were wifi, a comfortable bed, and air conditioning.

Results

As a direct result of our survey, we now have faster wifi and more routers to extend our Internet service to all villas and pools!

Thank you to everyone who took our survey. We look forward to collecting more data and making changes based on what our visitors say. Didn’t get a chance the first time? Tell us what you want from your trip to Costa Rica and receive exclusive discounts!

Flowers Around Norma’s

Do you know what kind of flower this is? Let us know in the comments!
Do you know what kind of flower this is? Let us know in the comments!

We have a lot of flowers on the grounds, and this had me wondering what kinds of flowers were in Norma’s own backyard! Here are three I have been able to identify so far.

1. Brunfelsia

These flowers are purple when they bloom and turn white over time.
These flowers are purple when they bloom and turn white over time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Few other plants will make you so aware of its own mortality—Also known as the “Yesterday-Today-Tomorrow” or the “Kiss Me Quick,” the Brunfelsia is a lavender color when it blooms, and the color fades to white after only a day, two at the most! This flower grows in the shade or in partial sunlight, and blooms year-round.

More than just a pretty face: This flower has been used to cure fevers and arthritis, and has been helpful in curing a parasitic disease spread by sandflies.

2. Orange Heliconia

What looks like a flower is really a colorful leaf!
What looks like a flower is really a colorful leaf!

Think of it as a drinking fountain for hummingbirds! Water collects in the stems of the heleconia for hummingbirds and other living creatures to eat. And we certainly have hummingbirds here at Norma’s.

There are over 40 types of this plant—some have upright flowers, like this one here, and some heliconia have dangling flowers. The dangling ones look a bit like crab claws hanging from trees!

You might be thinking—They sort of look like bananas! Heliconia flowers are actually related to bananas, which we also have at Norma’s!

3. White Orchid

We also have yellow orchids!
We also have yellow orchids!

 

Costa Rica is home to over 1300 types of orchids, so I knew I’d find one on our grounds! Costa Rica’s national flower is the guaria morada, a beautiful pinkish purple orchid. Orchids love to grow in Costa Rica, and even the Botanical Orchid Garden of Costa Rica is in our town of La Garita because of its amazing climate! Costa Rica also hosts many orchid festivals.

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We have many, many more, so I may make more posts featuring more life around Norma’s! Norma always says that people are like plants—We all need sunshine and water.

If you can recognize the first photo, please let me know what kind of flower it is!

NaNoWriMo Discount!

If you're gonna write a book, why not do it here?
If you’re gonna write a book, why not do it here?

 

Writers have been getting ready for NaNoWriMo, which can be an exciting and productive time! But have you planned on what you’re going to do after?

Maybe some editing or rewriting…in Costa Rica?

Norma’s is giving 10% off weekly and monthly rates for writers who book during March-August of 2015! There’s one catch . . . you must send the request during NaNoWriMo (November). You do not need to make any payments, but we need all requests by November 30.

Drop me a line at lisaatnormas@gmail.com with the following information:

1. The dates you’re looking to stay and the room you want (furnished room with access to community kitchen, studio with its own kitchen, one bedroom, or two bedroom house)
2. Your Twitter handle
3. A bit about your project!

Is that it?

Space is limited, but we will try to accommodate as many as we can! Drop us a line to reserve your spot!

Normal rates for these months are:

$600/month, $360/week for a studio
$800/month, $480/week for a one-bedroom
$1000/month, $600/week for a two-bedroom

Why Norma’s?

Norma’s is in the quiet town of La Garita. We are close enough to San Jose and Alajuela that you have major conveniences, but far enough and secluded enough that you can buckle down!

By offering this discount specifically for writers between March and August of 2015, we hope to cultivate a bigger creative community.

**You must send a message before November 30 to receive this discount! You do not need to make a payment, but must send the initial request.**

 

So drop us a line before November 30 with any questions, let us know you’re a writer, and if you eventually decide to stay with us, you’ll get 10% off your stay!

Still not sure? Check out this video to see what Norma’s is all about:

Still not enough? ***AND*** If you visit our Twitter @normasvillas and RT (retweet) our discount, you’ll receive an extra 5% off!

What are you waiting for? Email me at lisaatnormas@gmail.com before November 30!