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Latino Plans Hartford’s First Downtown Condos In Over A Decade

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Developer Jose Ramirez. Photo credit: Hartford Courant/Monica Jorge

Since early 2015, renters have moved into hundreds of new apartments downtown, the majority of converted buildings now boasting occupancies of 90 percent or better.

But is downtown ready to take the next step into condominiums?

 Developer Jose Ramirez says he has no doubts, as he nears the end of a two-year quest to secure financing to convert long-vacant space at 289 Asylum St. into eight condos. The units would be on the upper floors of a building that once hosted Mayor Mike’s restaurant.

The $1.4 million “Hartford Lofts” project would convert the space that was a hotel and rooming house and ...

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When The Three Kings Didn’t Go To The Mall

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bessy reyna Bessy Reyna

The Christmas holidays of my childhood in Cuba, are now mostly a nostalgic memory of the family we left behind when we immigrated to Panama. But, the one tradition from that time in my life which I still remember very fondly is what happened on January 6, the day when Three Kings, those invisible beings, would come some time in the night to bring us presents. Wanting to be in their good graces, I always made sure they had water for the camels, and food for the Kings. I imagined how hungry they were after such a long trip all the way to Cuba. As much as we ...

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Guatemalan Artisans Are Pushing to Remove 64,000 Fake Maya Products From Etsy

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Photo credit: Photo courtesy of Ethical Fashion Guatemala/Remezcla

In San Juan La Laguna – a town on the shore of Lago de Atitlán in Guatemala – the 20 or so Maya women who make up Casa Flor Ixcaco, a collective that produces organic fabrics, have seen their work misappropriated on several occasions. Plenty of business owners come into the group’s store, ask for a sample of the work, and promise to return to place a large order. But they never come back.

“What happens normally, and it’s happened to me, [is] people come here and ask for samples and [then they create their own products], but now they use chemical ...

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