What I Ate Today: Jalapeño Chicken

What I Ate Today: Jalapeño Chicken

Comedor Margarita is one of my favorite lunch spots in San Juan del Sur. Nine times out of ten I order the jalapeño chicken. Comedor Margarita isn’t listed in the Lonely Planet or Frommer’s guide books, but it should be! The food is consistently good and service always comes with a smile. Best of all this beautiful plate of food rings in at just C$80 ($3.20 USD).

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

It’s been one month since we said adiós to our beloved three bedroom, two bathroom home in San Juan del Sur and said hello to our new digs in Marsella Valley. 

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- Rustic modern living in Nicaragua

Located just 15 minutes from the center of San Juan our new rental home sits on a 1/2 acre parcel of land. Our current living space includes an open concept kitchen and living room, one spacious bedroom and one bathroom with a kick ass shower. 

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- We love the polished concrete floors and countertops and the modern lighting

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- The living room and kitchen area (as well as the bedroom) is equipped with air conditioning

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- The living room sofa doubles as a bed

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- After a year and a half of sharing a double bed, it sure is nice to sleep in a queen again

Making a Move to Playa Marsella

- The hot water showers are heavenly

The second floor open-air thatch roof rancho is one of our favorite features of the house. It’s the perfect place to visit with friends during the day or evening.

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- A second living room

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- A fine place for an afternoon nap

An alternate and equally enticing option for outdoor lounging are the hammock chairs that hang on the front of the house. We love the abundance of outdoor living space our new abode offers.

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- A great place to enjoy morning coffee and a good book

On the property, a few steps from the main house, sits this cute little casita. 

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- The perfect place for guests

In addition to the casita we also have a private bedroom and bathroom which is located right under the rancho. 

We promised exciting news in our previous post and here it is.

In Nica Now is now providing lodging!  

For full details–complete with more photos and pricing–check out In Nica Now Lodging on our Accommodations page.

Moving out of town was something we discussed for awhile before actually doing it. Did we want to give up the convenience of walking to our favorite hang outs, the central market and San Juan Bay? Well, we’re happy to report that thirty nights in we have absolutely no regrets with our decision to move to Marsella Valley.

An 8 minute walk puts us at Playa Marsella, where sunsets with a bottle of wine are tough to beat.  A three minute drive up the hill takes us to Playa Maderas surf beach. Although we don’t actually surf we definitely enjoy watching those that do.

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- A magical sunset at Playa Marsella

Gone are the days of bombas (firecrackers), bad karaoke and constant barking dogs and crowing roosters.  At our new home in Marsella Valley we enjoy the sounds of birds chirping happily in the trees and a distant growl from a howler monkey now and then. 

I’m discovering my green thumb and Gordon has plans to plant a little vegetable garden.

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

Our miniature schnauzer Maggie is equally content here. She loves to wander around the property sniffing, digging and exploring. She is gradually getting used to the horses that sometimes wander near the house.

Making a Move to Marsella Valley

- Hey there horsie!

Life here in the campo, as it’s called, is pretty sweet and we can’t wait to share these surroundings. Who wants to be our first official guests? 

Photo Journalism Friday: All I Need…

Photo Journalism Friday: Advice from a Palm Tree



“In Nica Now…where have you been?”

It’s been a super busy month for us here in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua! Too busy to even blog about it.

Our good friends Caroline and Adrien decided to buy a bar. Their decision to buy this bar was made in 48 hours — just two days before they were leaving for Belgium to spend time with family and friends. Adrien and Caroline asked for our help, and as good friends do we jumped right in.

In addition to managing Bar Republika, we’ve also moved. Stay tune for details about our new home (as well as some exciting news for In Nica Now) in our next blog post. 

After 21 days of bartending, waiting tables, stocking the bar, prepping food and cooking Gordon and I were both ready for a break.

We finished our shift on Saturday afternoon and arrived home just before sunset. With a bottle of red wine in our back pack and our little Schnauzer Maggie by our side we strolled down to the beach.

We sipped on our wine, played fetch with Maggie and admired a magnificent sunset and were reminded why we love life in Nicaragua. 

"In Nica Now...where have you been?"

– The prettiest sunset we’ve seen in a long time!

As the last of the light left us we packed up our belongings and wandered up the road to a local restaurant.  Country western classics belted out from the stereo speakers as we sipped $1 beers and chatted with the owners Jose and Maria.  We dined on delicious whole fried fish dinners and reminisced about our very first month in Poneloya, Nicaragua, the place where our expat adventure began just over two and a half years ago.

Time sure flies when you’re having fun!

Snapshots: Rio San Juan, Nicaragua

A photo gallery showcasing some of our favorite photos from our trip to Rio San Juan.

(Click on any thumbnail to view larger sized images).

What I Ate Today: Tajada de Pollo (Chicken with Fried Green Plantains)

What I Ate Today: Tajada de Pollo

For supper this evening we enjoyed a typical Nicaraguan dish called Tajada de Pollo–barbecue chicken, gallo pinto, fried green plaintains and cabbage salad–all for the very low price of C$85 (approximately $3.30 USD).  If you’re in town and want to sample this exact dish just make your way to the little pink pulperia on the corner near Zen Yoga and Mauricio’s San Juan Pizzeria. I dare say the famous chicken lady of San Juan del Sur has some competition.

Photo Journalism Friday: Happy Little Birds

Photo Journalism Friday: One Chocoyo, Two Chocoyos

The Chocoyo Parrot (Half-Moon Conure) is a common household pet in Nicaragua, just as common as a cat or dog in North America. This particular pair lives just down the hill from us. They enjoy mimicking a variety of sounds and will bob their heads and dilate their eyes when they are happy to see you.

An International Living Article: A Few Words from Carl Segerstrale of NSR (Nicaragua Surf Report)

Click on the image or text below to check out another one of our International Living articles.

A Fun, Portable Spare-Time Income

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

Beach towns like San Juan del Sur celebrate the deeply religious holiday of Semana Santa with something resembling Spring Break in Cancun. 

There is loud music, dancing and libations the entire length of beach. All major beer, rum and cell phone companies are represented by young ladies wearing company colors. 

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

- In deference to the perpetual heat of San Juan del Sur the corporate clothing is designed and sized with cool comfort in mind.

It’s a festive atmosphere, and not one meant just for the young party crowd.

Families take this time to get out of the city and have some fun. San Juan del Sur transforms into a mini amusement park of sorts complete with a carnival, beach and street vendors. 

Contrary to North America festival conventions food and drink prices actually drop during this celebration. Good eats and cold beverages are plentiful and much less expensive than any other time of the year.

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

- It’s hard to beat $1 rum cocktails, 60¢ beer and 3 Heineken for $4.

The same can’t be said for accommodations. Places to sleep are in short supply and demand makes for higher prices. Many locals rent rooms in their homes to make some extra cash which helps alleviate the bed shortage.

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

- Mattresses and pillows for sale

This particular Semana Santa in San Juan del Sur has been much different than the last.

We’ve heard speculation that many Managuans stayed home tending to property due to the earthquake red alert status that is currently menacing our capital city. We may never know the reasons for the low attendance numbers, but at a guess I’d say 50% stayed home.

The shame is that this year San Juan seemed ready for the influx of tourism. There were dozens of extra tents set up on the beach for shade, too many portable toilets to count (emptied daily), teams of people combing the streets and beach for garbage, a plethora of vendors and hundreds of police. Temporary parking was even set up in town and on the edge of town.

Elisha and I went out during the day and night to join in the festivities. There was an abundance of drinking and dancing on the street, in the temporary event bars, as well as all of the usual hangouts. Everyone was smiling, laughing and jumping to the beat.

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

- Things were just getting warmed up Wednesday afternoon at the Flor de Caña stage.

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

There were a few over indulgers taking “naps”, but nothing compared to US Spring Break standards. We didn’t see any signs of drunk aggression or any real illegal activities.

What we did see was Nicaraguan families enjoying a much needed and deserved vacation at the beach. There were also legions of hard working Nicas running concession stands.

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

- Not a bad place to sell your products and spend the night.

During my morning run I saw people working away setting up for sales. They were still hard at it when Elisha and I headed home for the night after enjoying the evening festivities. Often their children were sleeping on mattresses or hammocks after a long day in the sun.

Together Elisha and I drank cheap Heineken, enjoyed great live music and ate Tip Top Chicken twice.

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

- We found good service, great music and value priced beer in the Heineken tent.

I rode the rides AND jumped off the Claro tower.

Semana Santa 2014: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

- My jump took place at night and therefore couldn’t be photographed…but you get the idea.

Hopefully next year the crowds will be back, our town will be just as prepared and more of our expat community will stick around to enjoy Semana Santa in San Juan with us.

(Click on any thumbnail to view larger sized images)

Let the Good Times Roll!

Let the Good Times Roll!Today In Nica Now is launching a very special initiative called, “Let the Good Times Roll!”

Has the information you’ve found on In Nica Now been helpful? Have you finally found answers to your questions? 

Say “gracias” by treating us to a couple of frosty Toñas, dinner for two or a night on the town. It’s as easy as 1 , 2, 3!  

Just click  on the “DONATE ” button you see below…

…and we’ll show our appreciation by keeping the good times rolling and the information flowing.

Let the Good Times Roll!

Muchísimas gracias!


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