Disclaimer: The following article was written by an external author. The opinions expressed in it do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Foundation or its members.

The Free Cities Foundation is taking part in ECI Development’s affiliate program and may earn a commission on property sales generated by the affiliate link included in this article.

As humans, it’s normal to want a perfect solution. But rarely is this possible. Life is almost always about compromise, trade-offs, and taking the best opportunity provided in the moment.

This is also true when looking for a place to call home too. There is never going to be a perfect location. But finding a place where you can enjoy significantly more freedom than your current location is almost always a better alternative… if you can find it. But when you can, a freer lifestyle is the result.

ECI Development is a company that specializes in the development of residential communities in Latin America. While these communities do not perfectly fit the description of a “Free Private City,” there are similarities between the two models.

Those folks who have settled into a community like Gran Pacifica, for example, have found a home offering a unique opportunity to live in a beautiful and secure environment while enjoying a range of amenities and services, with more freedom and greater flexibility in how they live, work, and play. For many people today, Gran Pacifica is also a tremendous Plan B location.

Not far from Managua, the capital of Nicaragua, Gran Pacifica is a wonderful village by the sea with over 3.5 miles of pristine beach. Nine holes of golf are in place, as are tennis courts, a clubhouse, two restaurants, a gym, a disc golf course, and community gardens. The miles of oceanfront provide swimming beaches and two world-class surf breaks, one of them the world-famous Meatgrinder.

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Residents and guests are finding a place to enjoy as a vacation destination, but far more important, many are finding a place to call home. A home in a community with a focus on agro-resilience and long-term planning. Over 130 homes are built. Another 80 homes are 100% off the grid, solar powered, and are under construction right now.

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Home is where the heart is, they say. At the heart of Gran Pacifica is a group of property owners who have found a freer life, organic food, hormone-free animal products, clean air, and less stress. Cattle, horses, honeybees, teak forests, and fruit orchards all exist on the property. The natural environment provides trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding. A sea turtle rescue program saves thousands of baby turtles every year.

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More importantly, property owners at Gran Pacifica have found community. They freely express themselves to neighbors. They enjoy a circle of friends who understand them and where they come from philosophically. These elements are profoundly meaningful and produce the highest quality of life.

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But these types of communities don’t happen by accident. They are intentionally created. The Free Cities Foundation works to empower freedom-oriented intentional communities and Gran Pacifica is an example of an intentional community model that clearly works.

Let’s compare ECI Development’s communities with the Free Private City model. They both offer residents from abroad the opportunity to live in a location with a favorable legal and regulatory framework. Free Private Cities have their own systems that are separate from the surrounding country. ECI Development’s communities are in countries such as Belize and Nicaragua, which already offer favorable tax and business regulations. While not the same thing, a less restrictive and lower tax environment is a step in the right direction.

Both models emphasize the importance of a written contract between the residents and the operating company. In a Free Private City, each resident signs a “Citizen Contract” that outlines the rights and obligations of both parties, as well as the services and fees that are provided by the operating company. In the case of ECI Development’s communities, residents sign a contract that outlines the terms of their purchase or lease, as well as any services or amenities that are included.

One key difference between the two models is that ECI Development’s communities are not fully autonomous and are subject to the laws and regulations of the surrounding country. Another important difference is in the business model. Free Private Cities are run by an operating company as a for-profit business, and residents pay a fixed fee in exchange for the protection of life, liberty, and property. Since ECI Development’s communities are not legally autonomous, this would not apply to them. ECI Development does make a profit from the sale or lease of the properties, but then transfers operational elements to the Property Owners Association. Their focus is primarily on providing a high-quality living environment for the residents and providing functions and residential services that a municipality would normally provide in many countries.

For individuals looking at moving to a freer location, outside their home country, a word of caution is in order. Freedom and personal responsibility are two sides of the same coin. Due diligence is yours to perform. Make sure you have the right tools to do that job well. The Consumer Resource Guide for Property Ownership Overseas is just that tool. Download your complimentary copy here.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can live in a community like Gran Pacifica, let us know. New neighborhoods, including a Low-EMF zone, are in the works. A health and fitness center on the beach is being planned. Agro-resiliency awareness and an additional focus on renewable energy are at the forefront, providing sustainable food and energy systems for the future.

Come for a visit. Short-term and long-term rentals make it easy to test drive the community and see if it’s a good fit for you. Get in touch and we’ll see you soon!

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