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RETIRED!! And Livin’ Large in La Estancia de Cafayate

Updated: Oct 4, 2019

Tiger and Dory are Hawaiian and California natives who visited La Estancia de Cafayate a few years ago and fell in love with it! Finally after selling their home on Kauai, they have retired, left the kids behind and moved permanently to their new home in La Estancia! They arrived 40 hours after leaving Kauai with their Jack Russell, Lexie, and cat, Mocha, Since their arrival a year ago, they have settled into the life and rhythm of Cafayate style. Here they answer a few basic questions about their changes and share some photos of their retirement lifestyle!

Tiger, you recently completed a motorcycle trip in NW Argentina with a couple of friends.

Tiger: Yes! All together we did 1345 km (836 miles) and out of that 749 km (465 miles) of dirt road. We completed a circle from Cafayate, Cachi, San Antonio de los Cobres, Susques, Cusi Cusi, Santa Catalina, La Quiaca, Jujuy, Salta and Cafayate. All of it between 2 provinces, Salta & Jujuy.

We reached a maximum altitude of 4966 metres (16292 feet). Our lowest altitude during the entire trip was Cafayate at 1600 metres (5250 feet) and for a full day we remained above 4000 metres (13123 feet)

And Dory still loves me even though I only called once during our adventurous trip!

Dory: Ladies nights!!! But still, very lonely with my husband gone!

How did you hear about Cafayate originally?

Tiger: Back in 2007 i read about a new development called “La Estancia De Cafayate” and got on the mailing list to receive updates on the development progress. And when we visited, we fell in love with Cafayate.

Dory: My husband came to me one day and said, "Hey honey, what do you think about moving to Argentina? My response, "What, are you nuts?”

What were the factors that led you to move here?

Tiger: We wanted to go back in time. Kauai was becoming overcrowded and oversold. Developers were buying up large parcels of land, and selling lots and Condos to out of state high income clients and it was changing the fabric of the island.

Dory: Peace and a tranquil lifestyle.

You moved to NW Argentina from Hawaii with your cat, Mocha, and Jack Russell, Lexie. Lots of people ask about international travel with their pets. Could you please elaborate on that!

Tiger: We had to make sure our pets were properly documented and vaccinated and in 2018, United Airlines had some unfortunate pet incidences and revamped their pet travel policies prior to our coming over to Argentina. We had to have our dog approved/emotional support approved and our cat emotional support approved by both our medical doctor and veterinarian for the US travel. We were allowed to use our US forms for travel in Argentina. We highly recommend this. Our pets flew with us in cabin the entire trip, lasting over 40 hours.

Dory: A properly trained dog works well on the plane and the many airports. If you have a small to medium dog, a Snoozer (a rolling carrier) keeps your dog safe from all the crazy maniacs running through the airport. Lexie is also trained for as a service dog and obeys with no questions asked. The cat, hmmm. Special circumstances caused by United Airlines opened up an avenue to allow the cat to be an emotional support animal.

Several veterinarian & physician visits were helpful. We also spoke with a very experienced dog trainer days prior to our departure. The $100 per hour was the best money we spent. Highly recommended!

How do you spend your days?

Tiger: We spend our days doing what we want! We are retired! Our days are spent going to the athletic club, golfing, hiking, horseback riding, cooking and entertaining, making road trips to other towns and cities close to Cafayate.

Dory: For the first time in my life, whatever I want.

​Just so happened that my neighbor (American) recently began golfing and has her own golf cart, (when the boys don't)and she invited me to learn with her, and another Argentinian neighbor. Not only have friendships developed but I understand the golf addiction. I am enjoying riding horses thru the dunes, biking, gardening and assisting my husband with his cooking!

What do you notice as you travel back and forth for visits to the US after having roots here in Cafayate?

Tiger:On our recent visit to bring back belongings and renew some documents

we noticed Kauai has changed a lot in the last several months. They had doubts about our decision but our children desperately want to come and visit us here in Cafayate.

Dory: Love going back to spend time with my sons, grandchildren and my beach. After our sad farewells, coming home to Cafayate is comforting.

What do you miss from the US?

Tiger: We miss the “consumer lifestyle” which facilitates being able to get what you want and need in a timely manner, and with so much competition, at a decent price.

Dory: Swimming at my beach, ​watching the moonlight on the ocean, cycling on the bike path on the edge of the ocean, watching the whales and playing in the water with my grandchildren.​ The best seafood.

How do you see your future here?

Dory: Hopefully as good as Kauai was before it was infiltrated with too many people. Everyone from all over the world wants a piece of Kauai but there's only so much to go around. Argentina is a very big place and the northwest is like going back in time.​ We love it.

How is the relationship and interaction with the local community?

Tiger: Kauai’s local culture is very similar to Cafayate’s. We have been welcomed! Time will allow us to integrate more fully into the local culture.

Dory: Warm & friendly

Is language a barrier since neither of you spoke Spanish when you arrived?

Tiger: Yes, although we manage with the sympathetic locals to get by! We thought we would be much farther along with learning Spanish by now. However, it is much harder than we anticipated!

Dory: Not really. But it has been much more difficult than I thought it would be. I continue practicing every day. My favorite question to anyone I come into contact with, "Como se dice...?".

What has surprised you the most?

Tiger: No one is in a rush here. Politics are almost non-existent. The locals are generally very nice, all the foods, including supermarkets, vegetable markets, meat, pork, and poultry markets and restaurants are outstanding in price and especially, quality.


If you would like more information on options to participate in living life in such a special place as Cafayate, please contact me. With confidentiality and confidence we can assist you to find the right fit for you to enjoy this wonderful place and invest in the bright future there.


Tel: +54 9 11 4145 6640

WhatsApp: +54 9 11 4145 6640

Skype: tcaseyskype or +1 650 206 - 2550

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