Welcome! Pura Vida? Thank you for visiting and stopping by to read this small
space, where I’d like to express how it’s like to live in the tropic, from my
workshop Gato Negro in Costa Rica.
It’s been a few months since I had in mind writing this blog, but couldn’t finish
shaping the idea in my head. In the end, I took pen and paper and started
writing, so here we go.
My goal from Pura Vida is to share what we do from this side of the world,
what enriches us culturally, what should you visit if you have the opportunity of
travelling to Costa Rica, what makes us Pura Vida and how we can talk about
sustainable design and more.
Let’s start with why we are called the Pura Vida country. I’d like to tell you the
origin of this phrase and what it means to us, at least from my perspective.
After doing some research, I came across an article where this story is told,
with the following details: “In 1956, the movie ¡Pura vida! was released by
mexican comedian Clavillazo. Although it remained only two weeks on air, the
phrase the main character constantly repeated gave path to the saying that
identifies our country til nowadays.
Since the mid 90’s, the term was incorporated upon the dictionaries of Costa
Rica as a local term with more than seven different uses: to greet, to say
goodbye, to thank, to qualify or to show admiration for a person, object or
The expression is intrinsically connected with the language and the Costa
Rican culture. It consolidated a “comunitary group trademark” that traspasses
frontiers and depicts our way of seeing the world.” If you want to know more
about this history, you can follow it here.
Pura Vida represents different things to me, from a greeting to a farewell. It
represents me as a Costa Rican. It’s well-being or being well in every single
sense of its wording and meaning. It’s living in a country without a military
force, which makes me proud. From all its uses, the one I enjoy the most is
when the term is used in an ironic manner, because from its context, it can
mean that everything is wrong, although it’s not. When understood, it’s
In my everyday life, I use Pura Vida for everything. Actually, it was curious that
during these pandemic times -especially at the beginning when we were all
confined worldwide- I had virtual meetings with companies from other
countries and every time I joined the meetings, I greeted them with the Pura
Vida expression. It sounded a little ironic because nobody was even close to
Pura Vida and a little funny to spread some laughter and joy, which helps
during bad times.
Now that you know what Pura Vida means, you may understand why I chose it
as a name for the blog. How couldn’t I? With everything it represents and its
rich meaning. We are what we read and speak, so in this blog I will keep you
company as fuel for your soul.
Thank you for your time and for reading me. Hope to see you back soon.