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CUENCA DIGESTNew owner plans to expand Air Cuenca service

Tourism in Cuenca and the rest of Ecuador will benefit from a new owner and an alliance of AirCuenca with DAE, the Caribbean airline, according to tourist officials. Arnold B. Leonora, who recently acquired a majority stake in AirCuenca announced the alliance with DAE last week and said it will open routes to 10 Caribbean destinations […]

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Environmentalists claim that hydroelectric project will harm San Rafael waterfall and downstream eco-systems

The image of the San Rafael waterfall is ubiquitous in Ecuador's Amazon region, appearing on everything from tourist brochures to the backs of buses, alongside the Virgin Mary meant to protect drivers. The waterfall, the country's largest, is in the Sumaco Biosphere Reserve, a lush site protected by the United Nations for its unique flora […]

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ACCESS CUENCAGringo Bingo –- a great name, fun night and fine cause

Two weekly Gringo Nights take place in Cuenca. One is on Fridays at Zóe restaurant on Presidente Borrero between Mariscal Sucre and Presidente Cordova starting at 5 p.m. The other is on Tuesdays at DiBacco restaurant on Tarqui between Bolivar and Gran Colombia starting at 5:30 p.m.   Both are great places and times to […]

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Business and home owners on Av. Remigio Crespo say that parking fees will not solve the area´s traffic problems

The decision to institute parking fees on Av. Remigio Crespo is not the solution to the neighborhood´s traffic problems say business and home owners in the area. With more than 13,000 vehicle trips per day, the street is Cuenca´s businest and most congested, according to city statistics. Within the last two decades, according to city […]

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Cuenca’s ‘gringo invasion’ may be exaggerated but new visa stats show the city is still popular with foreigners

Cuenca´s “gringo invasion,” a term coined by an Ecuadorian news magazine, may not be all it´s cracked up to be according to numbers released last week by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the national immigration office. On the other hand, the numbers show that the city continues to be the most popular destination for new […]

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ACCESS CUENCAPrinter shopping is a big success –- except for the printer

My luggage was already overflowing and I needed a new printer anyway, so I left my old printer behind, planning on buying a new one in Cuenca. My friend Greg Madeiros, an expat computer guy, recommended the store CompuFacil. Armed with the address on Remigio Crespo Toral near Avenida Loja, I checked my trusty guía […]

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ACCESS CUENCA´Bomb´ around for two bits on the magic buses of Cuenca

Among the first sights newcomers to Cuenca notice, along with the billowing white clouds, the rolling green hills, and the red-tile roofs, are the big blue buses that spew black diesel fumes into the otherwise colorless alpine air.   Hundreds of them bomb around town, from roughly 5:45 a.m. till 11 p.m. weekdays and 6 […]

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Despite limited funds, vice president leads the charge to make Ecuador accessible to the handicapped

The ornate lobby of the nation’s vice presidential palace is teeming with people in wheelchairs and on crutches, mothers leading the blind and the developmentally disabled. Many are here because they believe that the man upstairs is one of their own. Ever since a thief’s bullet ripped through his spine 13 years ago, Ecuador’s vice […]

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Ecuador remains almost entirely free of drug crops according to the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime

Ecuador remains a country with no discernible incidence of drug crops, despite its location between drug producers Colombia and Peru, according to a representative of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), speaking in Quito on March 9. "The results to date show that Ecuador has taken positive steps that don’t allow these […]

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New expats: While you enjoy your Ecuadorian adventure consider what you can offer your new country

By Anne Carr Bienvenido to Ecuador as a new immigrant!   We are the fortunate immigrants who got to choose our new country, our method of transport, our accommodations, and what belongings to bring with us.  We are not an exodus frightened of regime change, dangerous border crossings, or highly restrictive government requirements even if […]

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DINING WITH DEKEGood, inexpensive Chilean empanadas on the river

Editor’s Note: Deke and Shirlee arrived in Cuenca for the first time on a two-week visit to Ecuador in early March 2010, and Deke promised himself he’d expatriate within a year. After he and Shirlee visited Cuenca for a month in October, Deke went home to Reno committed to keeping the promise, and he returned […]

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