Report: #490257

Complaint Review: Grupo Carranza, Club Punta Leona

  • Submitted: Fri, September 04, 2009
  • Updated: Sat, August 13, 2011
  • Reported By: Kalinda — Altos de Leonamar Other Costa Rica
  • Grupo Carranza, Club Punta Leona
    Club Punta Leona
    Jaco, Select State/Province
    Costa Rica

Grupo Carranza, Club Punta Leona - Beware of Punta Leona Developments! We bought a property in a supposedly fantastic, eco-friendly exclusive community, that turned out to be a poorly managed, crowded, nature lovers nightmare We were misled by the advertising and apparent beauty of Punta Leona properties. Jaco, Costa Rica

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Groupo Carranza is a dishonest organization

*Consumer Comment: Harold Wright and Clinton Stephenson and associates

*UPDATE Employee: To clarify some points

*Consumer Comment: why are you falsly accusing Grupo Carranza

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

BEWARE OF DEVELOPMENTS IN PUNTA LEONA, COSTA RICA, Limoncito, El Tranquilo, Marina Carara, Naturezza Retreat, Brisas del Golfo, Condominio Cerromar, Condominio Montemar, Condominio Bosques de Punta Leona, El Bambu, Condominio Villa Leona.

We are writing to warn those who are interested in any of the ongoing developments in Punta Leona about the anomalies that are going on in this resort.
Punta Leona has been one of the most beautiful places in the Central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. My husband and I purchased land in 2001 and recently built a home in Altos de Leonamar, one of many developments of Punta Leona. Despite its potential to be the dreamed retirement community the experience has been less than ideal. As it relates to our own experience, we see a huge gap between what is offered and what you end-up getting. I will list the reasons for our disappointments specifically in ALTOS DE LEONAMAR, but will also address current issues with other developments nearby that may have more serious implications for newcomers.
The developers . The developers of Punta Leona are   Guillermo Carranza Castro (Grupo Carranza) and Eugenio Gordienko Orlich (Hotel y Club Punta Leona) have multiple law suits in Costa Rica, (see details below) from customers that claim that they have been ripped-off for thousands of dollars.
The lot . Our problems started when we realized that the plot landmarks that were shown to us and we ended-up purchasing were different from the registered landmarks. We had to modify our ideas of what we wanted to do after we saw the real layout.

The road. The road leading to our house was destroyed in one of the storms ~ 5 years ago because of bad construction. The materials to fix-up the road were apparently stolen and despite of numerous discussions, written petitions, etc., we still dont have a paved road to get to our house. Because of the bad condition of this road (it does not even have gutters) we had to pay $1,350 to build a gutter in front of the garden so that the mud carried by the heavy rains would not get into our house. Because of this bad road we also had to spend $15,250 dollars in reinforcing the entrance to our garage.
The administration of the condominium . The condominium administration is broke and far from functional. The main problem is that the developers own 76.71% of the land that encompasses the condominium which gives them absolute majority in the voting for the condominium administration according to Costa Rica condo law. This majority has enabled them to not pay the condo fees and vote all issues in their favor. The condo currently has serious problems with security, availability of water and electricity, garbage disposal, general maintenance of gutters, roads, and green areas. As an example, we did not have any water during New Years week because the Hotel Punta Leona which is owned by one of the developers was at full capacity and there was no water left for us in Altos de Leonamar. The building code for style is easily violated as are any of the rules relating to noise, advertising, control of construction building crews that hang out around the neighborhood etc.
However, the most serious current issue is their plans to further develop the land near Altos de Leonamar which includes EL TRANQUILO ( , NATUREZZA RETREAT, CERRO MAR , and BRISAS DEL GOLFO. These developments will bring 800 more people to a very small area and there is not enough water and electricity to support these developments. There area also no telephone lines (as we mentioned we dont have a telephone) . The road to the beach already has so many cars that on weekends it is dangerously congested. The new developments will exacerbate this situation since it is not possible build new roads there.

The environment. The advertising of developments in Punta Leona has always emphasized their conservationist approach to the environment but reality shows otherwise. Those of us who purchased with the idea of keeping and maintaining the wonderful surroundings and natural beauty of Punta Leona, are devastated by the exploitation and abuse of the forest by the developers. Development of El Tranquilo, Condominio Cerromar, Condominio Naturezza,Condominio Montemar, Condominio Brisas del Golfo, Condominio Limoncito is currently on hold by Costa Rican authorities (MINAET) because of its harmful impact on the environment. These developments consist of   6 towers in El Tranquilo, 8 towers in Naturezza,70 lots in Cerromar, 8 towers in Limoncito, 460 lots in El Bambu, 350 lots in Villa Leona, 15 small farms of 50,000 m2 in Condominio Bosques de Punta Leona. Many of these developments plan to turn the beach front into parking lots. Furthermore, all the soil that is being carried by water to the beach Playa Blanca (one of the most beautiful in Costa Rica ) is killing marine species and natural ecosystems.
The promise of a secluded, de-facto private beach . When we and others purchased the land, we were taken to a beautiful secluded beach available to condo owners. Now, the developers claim that the road to the beach is private property and access to condo owners is denied.
VIVA Punta Leona, one of Punta Leonas first condo developments that started 2 years ago left over 30 buyers hanging after it was not able to move forward. To date, buyers have not received their investment:
Articles published on VIVA Punta Leona (((link redacted)))
(((l ink redacted)))
(((link redacted)))
Purchasers Might Lose Thousands on Fai l ed VIVA Punta Leona Condos in Costa Rica
January 28, 2009 VIVA Punta Leona, a cancelled pre-construction condo project from Beach One Developments a failed alliance between Eugenio Gordienko of Costa Ricas exclusive Punta Leona Hotel & Club and Hal Wright of Punta Dominical, has not yet refunded hundreds of thousands of dollars paid by national and foreign purchasers who bought condominiums in the projects phase I release.
In a beautifully executed sales event on April 30, 2007 , the now-defunct partnership between Gordienko and Wright sold 36 pre-construction condominiums to purchasers from Costa Rica , the United States and Canada in the VIVA Punta Leona Phase I release. The first release included one-, two- and three-bedroom properties that ranged in size from approximately 800 to more than 2,000 square feet . Per-unit prices ranged from US$189,900 to US$749,900, generating total sales of US$16.3 million.
Unfortunately, ongoing problems and disputes led to the quick demise of the partnership behind Beach One Developments, and like many other pre-construction projects planned for the central Pacific coast of Costa Rica , VIVA Punta Leona was canceled. However, unlike other canceled or postponed projects in the area which include St. Regis, Vista Azul, Jaco Beach Towers and Tropica Sands VIVA Punta Leona purchasers have not yet been refunded for their deposits.
I put down a deposit of $37,000 for the condo I purchased with VIVA Punta Leona, said Antonio Oreamuno, a Costa Rican citizen who has been a member of Punta Leona for nearly 25 years. I never expected that people so well known in Costa Rica would take so long to refund my deposit if the project was cancelled. Both Eugenio Gordienko and Hal Wright are, as far as I know, very wealthy and influential individuals it doesnt make sense why they would risk their reputations by failing to return the money.
After signing purchase agreements, VIVA Punta Leona purchasers were instructed to make a deposit equal to 10% of the purchase price to a Stewart Title escrow account to secure their selected condo units. Some purchasers, such as Ralph Carlson of Costa Rica paid as much as $78,000 for the deposit on his VIVA Punta Leona penthouse condo. When the project was cancelled, purchasers rightfully expected the prompt return of their deposits.
Purchasers were notified on June 6, 2008 that the money would be refunded within a 10-month term by April 6, 2009 . At the same time, Eugenio Gordienko released sales information for another project in Punta Leona Limoncito and hoped that most purchasers would want to transfer their deposits from VIVA Punta Leona. Yet after months of poor communication and failed hopes, most investors just wanted their money back. They are still waiting.
I havent heard anything from the VIVA developers for many months now and Im getting very worried, said purchaser Gretchen Gary, an American citizen who lives part-time in Jaco , Costa Rica . I am not interested in transferring my deposit to purchase in Limoncito and just want Eugenio Gordienko and Hall Wright to refund my $21,000. No one answers my calls, and at this point, I have no idea who to talk to about my VIVA refund.
For now, the process of refunding the deposits for VIVA Punta Leona seems to be at a standstill. There is no communication, no action plan, and not even an appointed representative to answer questions. In the complete absence of communication, purchasers can only hope that Eugenio Gordienko and Hal Wright will keep their promise and refund the deposits. If not, they will set a very bad precedent on the central Pacific coast one that may change the future of ethics and fair dealing in the local condo market of Jaco, Costa Rica and surrounding areas of the central Pacific coast.
In CERROMAR there is a lawsuit set forth by GIORGIANELLA FREER VIQUEZ en el Juzgado Civil de Mayor Cuanta de Puntarenas for breach in the contractual agreement.
18 residents in representation of the Mapache development file a lawsuit against la sociedad Hotel Punta Leona S.A., of the Gordienko family, for breach in the contract agreement. Buyers never got the title property as promised.
For more than 10 years, some owners of Vistamar have been waiting for the titles of their properties as stated in the contract.
Complete article Publisher in Spanish:


En esta semana ha circulado una carta donde se hace mencin del engao que sufrieron algunos   inversionistas por parte de los seores Eugenio Gordienko, y su socio Hal Wright   quienes se comprometieron a construir VIVA Punta Leona,   con   30 unidades residenciales por un valor final de $ con un resultado apocalptico. Segn la denuncia, se dejan el dinero, no concluyen   el proyecto pero tampoco devuelve la inversin.

Cuando   el Peridico La Repblica , y El Financiero hicieron la publicacin respectiva, desconocan   que no solo este desarrollo   fue un fiasco, sino que existen otros proyectos que tambin pertenecen a la familia Gordienko, que evidencian iguales irregularidades:

1) Este es el caso de Cerromar,    en Punta Leona, donde ya existe una DEMANDA ORDINARIA CIVIL por incumplimiento contractual de GIORGIANELLA FREER VIQUEZ contra HOTEL PUNTA LEONA S.A. y LAPAS DE NITROGENO SIETE S.A., se conoce en el Juzgado Civil de Mayor Cuanta de Puntarenas, en expediente 07-100513-0642-CI-3

2) 18 Socios en representacin   del residencial   Mapache tuvieron que presentar demanda penal, contra la sociedad Hotel Punta Leona S.A., de la familia Gordienko, por incumplimiento de contrato al no darles a los compradores el ttulo de   propiedad al que se haban comprometido.

3) Algunos de los apartamentos del proyecto   Vistamar, se encuentran en la misma situacin, se les prometi el ttulo de propiedad pero a la fecha no han cumplido con su compromiso. Adems de la promesa NO cumplida de conformidad con el contrato, (desde hace mas de 10 aos) de convertirlos en condominio.

4) El proyecto de Limoncito est a punto de sucumbir por la falta de inversin extranjera, a pesar de que el seor Gordienko, engatus    y comprometi el   dinero de los socios del Hotel y Club Punta Leona S. A. sin la debida autorizacin de la Asamblea , y especulando con    dinero que no es suyo.

5) Por otro lado estamos investigando un proyecto en Orotina y otro en Esparza, tambin de la familia Gordienko que corrieron con la misma adversidad.


El Licenciado Oreamuno nos solicita la divulgacin   en nuestro Boletn de de la publicacin que se hiciera en los medio de comunicacin mencionados con la siguiente peticin: POR FAVOR DISTRIBUIR ESTE MENSAJE A TU LIBRETA DE DIRECCIONES DE LA GACETILLA. URGE QUE EL MAYOR NUMERO DE PERSONAS ENVIEMOS NUESTROS COMENTARIOS A EL FINANCIERO (((link redacted))) . EL PROBLEMA DE VIVA PUNTA LEONA NO ES UN PROBLEMA PUNTUAL. ESTE   ES UN ASUNTO DE TODOS EN PUNTA LEONA.

Cambiando de tema, recibimos hoy por parte de la seora Laura Surez Zamora, directora a.i. de ARESEP la misiva que acompaamos cuya temtica ya conocamos, excepto el prrafo segundo del punto 1) que nos menciona que Ecoservicios Punta Leona S.A.   apel   la resolucin final y el recurso de revocatoria se encuentra en revisin en la Direccin de Asesora Jurdica   de la Autoridad Reguladora.

No obstante y pese a que se solicit regular las tarifas de esta empresa, la ARESEP no se las puede brinda ya que carece del requisito legal que exige la ley 7593, Artculo 9 en concordancia con el artculo 5 de la misma ley.,

Bien queda claro, el A y A, debe hacerse cargo del servicio y Ecoservicios queda excluida como ente operador del servicio.

CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report.
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#1 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Groupo Carranza is a dishonest organization

AUTHOR: Mark Petrucci - (United States of America)

I am writing this to warn any American or Tico investors not to do business with Groupo Carranza or Club Punta Leona! To clarify ElizabethCarranza's denial of any involvement with many projects at Club Punta Leona I am writing this letter. I purchased a piece of land from Sandra Carranza in 2005 in Montemar for 95,000. During this time, Sandra promised that in one year this area would have a road network, water and power. I paid Groupo Carranza in full. She was on the phone every couple of days looking for the money until she got it. Them I never heard from her or anybody else from Groupo Garranza. The title for this property was supposed to be ready in a couple of months.Well guess what? It is August 2011 and there is still no title and not a single thing has been done. I have pictures to prove all of this. Elizabeth Carranza, Sandra Carranza's sister denies any involvement with Montemar. If this is true then why do they continue to make up stories and excuses about not having the title ready. In the past couple of years the lawyers representing Groupo Carranza keep changing. Last year it was Mario Pacheco. This year it is Carlos Villolobos. Both are from the Pacheco Coto law firm in Costa Rica and both are representing GROUPO CARRANZA. Last year I was told there was a problem with the trees but this was all cleared up and the title would be reade by January or February of 2011. Well suprise suprise it's August 2011 and a new laywer has been appointed. Now the excuse is that all of the old applications have expired and everything has to be resubmitted by the new laywer. He promised that everything should be done by January 2012. What do they think I'm stupid. I already spoke to several lawyers in Costa Rica for advice. They are ready to proceed with a lawsuit. I don't know how many times I called Groupo Carranza or their lawyers and got the same story "They are in a meeting and will call you back". I'm still waiting for a call. DO NOT DO  BUSINESS WITH THESE PEOPLE unless you want the same headache as I have now. For your own good do not believe a word that they tell you. It's funny that after six years I'm still waiting for a title for my property but their brother has approval for a private beach in Altos de Leona Mar . Montemar is part of this. If you are dealing with Groupo Carranza pleas contact me because I am sick and tired of their lies. DO NOT DEAL WITH THESE PEOPLE FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! 
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#2 Consumer Comment

Harold Wright and Clinton Stephenson and associates

AUTHOR: Coblentz - (Costa Rica)

In Playa Dominicalito in Puntarenas they did the very same thing. They sold the Marisol Condo Project and took all the money. The project is abandoned. Very sad. They have damaged all the environement and get away with it.

In the USA they were found guilty and a Costa Rican property sold by Harold Wright to Danny Pang for 20 million dollars relating to Costa Rica and Punta Dominical will be auction by the USA courts as a result of the investigation by the US Government. By the way, the property is not identified in Costa Rica Registro Civil records. How does Harold Wright get 20 million into Costa Rica...has he paid the proper taxes?
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#3 UPDATE Employee

To clarify some points

AUTHOR: Elizabeth Carranza - (Costa Rica)

Out of respect to our clients, we would like to clarify the following points: 

-The company Grupo Carranza S.A. is a business group initiated in 2005, which acquired land located inside the Punta Leona Complex in aims of developing high quality/ low impact projects, committed to develop with a concious and environmentally friendly attitude and trying to preserve green areas as a main objective. Grupo Carranza is currently developing the following projects:

 - Condominio Eco-residencial El Bamb, located  approximately at mile from Punta Leonas Main
Entrance. This particular project  covers 49 acres with only 50% of that area designated for developing, the 50% remaining land is green and common areas. The project has 230 lots and social areas and currently has approved permits ( Viabilidad Ambiental) from Setena. We are in construction process of the management offices, main entrance and security booth.
-Condominio Brisas del Golfo, It is a residential development with permits for Viabilidad Ambiental. It covers an extension of 46 acres with 32 lots,  with a 40% coverage leaving a remaining 60% as green and common 

It is of great importance to make very clear that Grupo Carranza is not a proprietor or participant of the developing of Condonimium Altos de Leonamar, Tranquilo, Cerromar, Montemar, Bosques de Punta Leona, Limoncito or Villa Leona, therefore we cannot be hold responsible for any situations regarding such projects.  Also, we would  like to acknowledge the preservation efforts on behalf of Club-Hotel Punta Leona through out the years, with ecology oriented programs such as the preservation of the Scarlett Macaw, the Bandera Azul Ecologica, etc. We want the best for the Punta Leona Complex and it's community and we hope all projects there have a positive outcome for all parties involved.
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#4 Consumer Comment

why are you falsly accusing Grupo Carranza

AUTHOR: Peter - (USA)

Please explain why you are grouping Grupo Carranza into the problems of Grupo Gordienko. They are 2 separate families and business owners. The condominium "Altos de Leonamar" is a 3rd entity with its own board of directors and not owned by either of the other families, but by the residents of the condominium. The results of decisions made by Gordienko - owners of Viva Punta Leona and Limoncito have nothing to do with the Carranzas.  You site info about the problems with Viva and Limoncito which are valid, but you accuse the Carranzas and do not site what they have done dishonestly or unethically.  I look forward to your reply.
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