Sunday, June 9, 2013

Buying a Business on Ambergris Caye, Belize

There is not much to say here...the best advice I can give is don't buy any business which is less than 3 years old. At best it means the business isn't fun at all. At worst (and normally this is the true reason) it's because the business is a losing or break even proposition.

 I am frankly tired of watching people start up businesses and then in under a year they have them "for sale" with any real estate broker desperate enough to take the listing. Often the listing is for an exorbitant sum of money. And, just as often the books are cooked to "Extremely Well Done."

If you're interested in purchasing a business on the island then make sure it has some real longevity. As I mentioned, 3 years is a fair minimum but 5 years or more of active, successful business activity is even better.

Google Earth - Update

I wonder when Grand Caribe will finally get under way....according to Google Earth, that is?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Important news about Grand Caribe and Caribe Azul

A few weeks ago groundbreaking began on an important multi-purpose  building at Grand Caribe and its sister development  Caribe Azul.

The building will have 3 stories. On the ground floor there will be food service and a convenience store. On the 3rd floor will be a brand new gourmet restaurant with elevator access. On the 2nd floor will be.....Grand Caribe's new Fitness Center and Spa!

This is the news we've been eagerly awaiting at Grand Caribe. With such great facilities in place there is no doubt that Grand Caribe is set to become Belize's biggest and best oceanfront residential-resort facility.

Watch the occupancy numbers rise at Grand Caribe when this great new facility becomes operational!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Fabulous investment lot deal on Ambergris Caye!

We've been clearing what has to be one of the best building lot values on Ambergris Caye.
 Just $68,000US in an area where similar properties have sold at well over that price over the years. for details and more new photos.

One other great value for money budget lot: ...canal lot in the DFC area a couple of miles south of town, very reasonably priced at just $22,700US!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

First Prize Winners!!!!

It's about bloody time you all are the 3 lucky and brilliant winners of our contest!

Melissa Abreu (yes, she wins a 1st prize for this one and and 2nd prize for another great entry)

Cotton candy sky
sudden wind barreling in
I'm soaked to the bone
(I liked this one, it has happened to me many times here, it keeps happening but that's because I'm not very clever).
Another 1st prize winner!
Tracey Giertz

I look at the sea
A happy calm takes over
Miss it, Belize me!

(Now, this also keeps happening to me a lot....I must be brighter than I thought.)

Here's the final 1st prize winner!
It's Anna and Gunter of Mathieu's, they sent in a few, I liked this one a lot:

pelicans gobble
silvery barracuda
let's fire up the grill!

But it didn't win a prize because the reference to "pelicans" was clearly an effort to influence judging. When will the corruption end! I was appalled! But then I read:

turquoise sparkling sea
dazzling light plays on coral
ocean warms my skin

And you have to admit, it deserves First Prize because there is so much implied colour and life in those 3 lines. If that doesn't remind you of Ambergris Caye, what will?

Prize winners, email me your mailing address and phone number to and we'll ship your prizes. CONGRATULATIONS to all of you and thank you so much to everyone who entered, all of the entries were fabulous.

One more Second Prize Winner! Great Retro Poem.

First prize winners......we have 3 of you....I'm having a lot of trouble deciding. I am well qualified to make a decision, after all I an International Judge (I have Belizean and British dual citizenship). There are 4 equally brilliant entries vying for 3 first prizes.  This is very hard....nevertheless, I have to make a decision. In the next post.

First, we have ONE MORE Second Prize winner. It goes to Harriette Fisher for her very retro entry:

Where your bare feet go
Walking Front, Middle or Back
 Streets in sand not snow

As you know San Pedro main streets in the town center were once called "Front, Middle and Back" Streets and they were once all white fluffy sand. Times change, vehicles arrive and of course now all are paved. But, thanks to Harriette for taking me back in time! Choose any book about Belize on and I'll ship it to you. Congratulations!

2nd prize winners of our great contest!

OK. Drum Roll. Instead of 1 first prize and 5 second prizes there will be 3 first prizes and 3 second prizes.

2nd prize get any book about Belize you find on up to a value of $25.00US! If you see your name and entry here just email me at with your address and a phone number and a link to the book you'd like to have on and I will get it shipped to you.

Here are the SECOND PRIZE winners:

Al Kruebbe with

People smiling there
Two Belikins in my hand
Breakfast at Estelle’s
Mike Keenan with

Stringy hammock snaps
Flailing limbs sculpt sand angel
Belikin beckons

Jed Thompson with

Toucan achieve more;
Hol Chan on the horizon;
Chicken drops at 7!

First prize winners will be announced very shortly!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

A Super Belize Contest - Great Prizes for the Winners!

So here we go, a simple little contest to turn your collective brains into mush for the coming new year. Prizes will be as follows:

First Prize, a copy of the fabulous book "Heavenly Belize" by Marius JovaiĊĦa, an absolutely beautiful book of awesome aerial photos of Belize. ONE lucky (and clever) First Prize winner is out there somewhere.

There will be 5 Second Prizes for some pretty brainy people as well. You'll have a choice. Winners can choose from a book on Birding in Belize, a guide to diving and snorkeling in Belize or a general tourist-type guide book to Belize. 2nd place book prizes may differ somewhat from the publications's all based on availability. I'll ship to you via. Amazon.

All you have to do is describe your impression of Ambergris Caye, the Jewel of Belize. You don't have to mention the words "Belize, Ambergris Caye, San Pedro" or anything like that (although you can if you want). This is good because your description MUST be written in Japanese Haiku style poetry which only gives you a limited number of words and syllables to use. For those of you too lazy to Google it, "Haiku" poetry consists of 3 lines. The first line must have 5 syllables. The second line must have 7 syllables. The third and final line must have 5 syllables.

So, for example, you could write:

Winter sun warms bones
Here on Isla Bonita
Frost free night ahead

OK, that was pretty average, you're going to have to do much better than that to win! Hopefully you get the idea, though, 5/7/5 syllables.

Email your entries to us at I will acknowledge receipt of each entry with a quick "Got it, thanks!" The contest will run until January 15th which I believe is the cut off date for most people to have already broken their New Year's Resolutions. No need to include anything other than your name and your poem. I'll only need your address, phone number etc. if you end up being a lucky winner so that I can ship your prize to you.

If you like what you see on our Facebook page and you haven't "Liked" us already feel free to do so, it'd be much appreciated. You don't have to "Like" us on Facebook to enter. Also, "Liking" our Facebook page won't increase your chances of winning, it'll just increase our number of "Likes" but we'd be grateful nevertheless!

Contest Rules: More than one entry per person is allowed. Be creative! No swearing, at least in your poem(s). Prizes awarded to the funniest, most original, cleverest poems out there. Poems not following strict Haiku style can't win but if you send an entry in and it breaks this rule I will email you to let you know so you'll have a chance to edit out the error. Yes, I'll read them all! Entries must be in by 6pm Belize Time January 15th 2013. English only, I don't know any other languages. Sorry.

Winning entries will be published on this blog on January 16th 2013!

Friday, December 28, 2012

A Super Business Bargain on Ambergris Caye

You've seen this here before, it's the Ladybug Plant Nursery. For me this is the Real Estate Surprise of my 2012. Actually, more than just one surprise:
1. The owner slashed the price from $125,000US to $45,000US.
2. No-one has yet made an offer.

The owner, Catherine, has said she'll listen to just about any reasonable offer. She's selling for personal reasons. Obviously one cannot warranty the success of any small business but the price of this particular one is so reasonable I think it has people thinking "Why so low?"

Ladybug only makes modest profits but that is because the owner admits she doesn't put the time and investment in that is really needed to make it buzz. On the other hand...think about much would it cost you to start a business like this from scratch...with no guarantee that you'd make any profit at all? Getting a business like this, with a substantial plant and equipment inventory and a decent customer base at such a super low price is just about unheard of on Ambergris Caye

IMO, this is a sleeper. Any hard working green fingered entrepreneur could make this little gem really shine. You'd never make a fortune on it but it has the capability to be a super little business making a decent profit each month. Perfect for a semi-retired couple looking to stay busy in Paradise.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The Grand Caribe snowman wishes everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy 2013!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

2013 set to be a GREAT YEAR!!!!!!

Thought of the Year for 2013 (apologies to those who have thought of this before, I don't know who you are, I've never seen it before in the media or on line and so as far as I am concerned it's an Original Thought by me).

So, we have 2013 upcoming. Thirteen. An Unlucky number. Consider this...on January 1st 1914 I bet a lot of people in the world were thinking "Thank Goodness 1913 is out of the way, we are in the clear!......."

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Belize's dumb tourist policy vs. Nationals of India

India is the 2nd most populated country on the planet. Its economy is growing almost as fast as China's. While India does have a huge poverty problem it also has a massive, and growing, middle and wealthy class of people.

India is a democracy and it doesn't support terrorism. For its size and especially size of population, one would have to say that India is one of the LEAST controversial countries on the planet.

So, why does the Government of Belize make it impossible for Indian nationals to visit Belize as tourists? Currently I am dealing with some Indian folk who want to come to Belize to see if they would like to invest in real estate. Just like any other person visiting for the first time they want to see if they like it here first. Essentially they'd be coming as tourists, at least initially.

But Belize won't let them enter the country until they prove that they are here to invest. This, of course, is stupid. Why can't Indian nationals be allowed to visit as tourists first, just to see if Belize is for them? What is the reason for Belize's policy vs. India?

I need to know...for now I'll just say that it's STUPID.

The photo below is of famed Indian actress and model Freida Pinto. I personally want to see more people like her in Belize!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A GEM of a Beachfront Home on Ambergris Caye

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

McAfee and his anti-Belize rants....hurtful to the Belizean people?

A friend of mine emailed me a while ago...he was wondering if the John McAfee saga would hurt Belize. It appears the answer is a resounding "No" with possibly even the opposite effect. Go to ...not so much for the story, but for the reader comments. I'd say Belize comes out of this just fine.

It is noticeable on Mr. McAfee's own blog that all dissenting comments are "moderated" out. (When he first started the blog most reader comments were negative vs. McAfee).

I saw a McAfee news article on CNN on line the other day and went to the reader comments....almost all posts were negative vs. McAfee....almost as if they were of the opinion that McAfee was a few virus definitions short of a full software update. In fact, here's one of those articles...go to the reader comments and laugh!

Mr. McAfee's attempts to hurt Belize (and by definition her people) with his endless blog rants seem to have had the opposite effect. A few days ago Mayor Danny Guerrero said he thinks this is the best thing to happen to Belize in years. He has a point.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Video of our 20 minute stroll Grand Caribe to Capricorn, Sunday 9th December 2012

Beautiful wading birds and chill-out iguanas on our 20 minute beach stroll from Grand Caribe to Capricorn for lunch on Sunday.

Ambergris Caye is such a beautiful place to live!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Unit E8 at Grand Caribe

Here's the walk through video of Unit E8 at Grand Caribe. Fabulous views from the veranda at the end of the video. It's all one scene, a walk-through the unit with no breaks or editing. If this unit becomes available for sale the owner has said he's willing to do great seller financing!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Surprising Wildlife Sighting on Ambergris Caye!

Concentrate on the two small trees...look at the foot of the trees as the camera zooms in. What an amazing really surprised me! Make sure audio is turned up.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Hurricane Sandy....why so much damage?

Why did Hurricane Sandy, which made U.S. landfall as a Category 1 storm last Monday, cause so much terrible damage? Winds were in the 70's with higher gusts. To people who live in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye these are not exceptional wind speeds. We have seen several storms in the last few years with similar winds and we've suffered only relatively minor damage. This year Mahahual, which is only 60 miles north of San Pedro, took a direct hit from 90mph Hurricane Ernesto and suffered relatively minor damage. Mind you, in 2007 the same Mexican town took 165mph Hurricane Dean and got flattened.

The same Hurricane Dean gave us 80mph winds which gave us a 18 hour power outage and a few downed tree limbs. That was it....less than 48 hours to a full recovery. In some parts of the U.S. North East it is said that it will be weeks or months before all power is restored. Let's look at the many reasons for the disparity in damage between recent storms which have hit our island and the U.S. North-East:

1. Storm size: Sandy was monstrously large, 1000 miles across and with damaging winds spread over 200 miles in diameter as it made landfall. The tropical cyclones which have affected Belize in the last 10 years have been much smaller in size, even some have been a bit more powerful wind-wise.

2. Storm surge off an open sea: We have our coral and limestone Belize Barrier Reef, the North East Coast of the USA has deep ocean and sand dune barrier islands. Protection wise there is no comparison. Most of Sandy's damage was from surging salt water.

3. the U.S. North East the lunar tides are measured in  feet. New York, for example, sees a 5 - 6 ft tidal difference each day and it's not an exceptional range by any means. Some parts of the U.S. North East see even greater tidal ranges and Sandy hit during a full moon.  Here in the Caribbean tides are measured in inches. Again, Sandy's main weapon of destruction was the massive amount of sea water which surged ashore at high tide. Imagine if San Pedro had a 5ft tidal range each day........

4. We're used to storms and so much of our construction is geared to taking a hit. Mind you, make no mistake, a strong Category 2 or above storm giving us a direct hit would cause plenty of damage. Category 4 Hurricane Keith in 2000 was no fun for us at all, direct hit, lots of damage, it was weeks and months to a full recovery. We lost our (wooden) house. In the U.S. North East the homes are all built close to the ground. Most "totalled" homes were done in by the surging waters...look at aerial photos of Sandy's aftermath and you don't see missing roofs caused by strong winds...all of the damage is at ground level from the sea.

5. In the last 30 years U.S. coastal areas have seen massive development. There are literally millions of new homes inappropriately located for the type of construction they're made from. There are some really low-lying areas where huge luxury home subdivisions have been created...some from reclaimed land. And the homes are built to ground level. In a part of the world with such high tides and no barrier reef protection one has to shake one's head at such unfettered and badly planned development. It's one thing to create such housing in low-lying areas, it's quite another not to raise the buildings off the ground on concrete columns in order to protect against storm surge damage. (This is why I shake MY head at the DFC subdivision here on the island...everyone here knows what will happen to it one day...naturally it was built by government...most private individuals would not have been so insane to have planned it that way).

The U.S. and Canadian North East has had its fair share of storms over the last 100 years. it only takes a deviation of a few degrees to cause a storm to make landfall rather than go out to sea. People talk about climate change causing Sandy. In reality Sandy was just another Atlantic hurricane which made an unfortunate turn of a few degrees. This caused it to make landfall where it did. Need proof of this? Look at the storms which have hit Halifax, Newfoundland and the vicinity, in the last 100's of years. Did "global warming" cause these storms to hit the cold north east?

Our good wishes and prayers go out to everyone affected by Hurricane Sandy. We hope your recovery takes a lot less time than is currently being predicted.