“Dig your heels in and lean back” said my friend Blue just before we descended the steepest part of the ridge on horseback. I grabbed the back of my saddle with my left hand and tightened up on the reins with my right.
The irony of her giving me a property tour on horseback was not lost on me. Seven years ago our roles were reversed. She walked into my real estate office, a tourist on a fact-finding mission for property, and I took her horseback riding with Donn Wilson through the eco-inspired community of Las Fincas de Escamequita.
Even back then, she traveled with her cowboy boots.
But this ride was different. There were no lot lines, clean-cut horse trails or vehicle access roads. I had to trust the horse’s footing because I could not see the ground beneath the thick brush.
We were on a “vision ride”. She had a crystal clear vision for the future of the land and I hoped to wrap my head around it.
Running between the ranch and the beach is a hidden valley through which Blue has guided many visiting cowboys and cowgirls over the years. There’s a sweet spot in the middle; where the rolling grassy plains are outlined in ancient Guanacaste trees and dotted with palms.
The riverbed hugs the southern edge providing a natural forest border that holds its green throughout the year due to an underlying aquifer. At the northeastern side is a gentle sloping ridge with a commanding view of the Pacific Ocean stretching out to Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula. Ride west and you’ll hit the sand in 15-20 minutes depending on the speed of your horse.
This is Big Sky Ranch.
We endeavor that our life and activity in Nicaragua continually respects and benefits our local community and environment. – Rancho Chilamate anthem
This anthem is not just lines on a page, it’s lived out everyday. And it’s grounded in a purpose that does not change.
So just as every guided horseback ride provides a donation back to the local community, the Rancho Chilamate anthem is shaping Blue’s next bold move. And as always, she’s choosing to take the road less traveled.
We dismounted our horses atop the ridge and Blue unveiled the renderings.
Listening to her, setting out her vision, it’s clear that she’s more of a steward of sacred land than a developer. She knows that socially and environmentally conscious development is an idea that matters. And she’s ready to get that idea out there into the world.
While most cash hungry real estate investors and developers would crunch numbers for condominiums and order a feasibility study for a golf course, Blue excitedly pointed my attention to the future location of a public high-school, community garden, equestrian center for boarding horses and a horse sanctuary.
She has an extraordinary ability to recognize beauty in the world and put it together in ways that others could never do.
The property will be anchored by a low-density African safari style lodge like no other in Nicaragua, featuring 20 spacious guest rooms, a restaurant, “cowboy bar” and pampering concierge service. Target opening date 1st quarter 2018.
It won’t just be a place to sleep, but a destination to savor. The infinity pool will greet the backdrop of the savannah. Nature will be invited inside, into the protectively covered open living spaces. And each room will be decorated with an antique collection that comes from hours of careful scouring of colonial residences and shops in Granada.
For visitors who want to turn their vacation into a lifestyle, Blue is offering a limited selection of 5 to 10 acre homesteads with custom build luxury home packages perfectly positioned between Rancho Chilamate and the frequently photographed sandy beach of Playa Escamequita.
Each lot comes with an “owners only” lodge membership that includes VIP access to the property’s flagship amenity. Private road access will be granted and every owner will receive a “ranch starter kit” with a well and power connection.
The homesteads are perfect for spreading out in privacy, your home surrounded by nature, the beach and downtown just minutes away. In a region where serviced residential lots larger than an acre are difficult to come by, the property prices are almost too good to be true.
Rest. Adventure. Safari. Romance by the seaside. Whether you’ve dreamed of a storybook second home or a peaceful and secluded space with pristine rural views and contemporary comforts, this opportunity is worth pausing to experience for yourself.
We’re very excited to announce the next phase of Rancho Chilamate.