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Hi Gekko,

Appropriate name if you are going to relocate to the tropics. We have hundreds of them running around our house alone.

I would think very seriously before leaving the mainland and coming to the USVI to run a business. While it is a great place to visit, I have lived here 5 years now and would never own a business here. Heck, with this government, I won't even buy a house.

The one thing in your favor running a bar down here is the liquor prices. A liter of Alize, (a most amazing mixture of passion fruit juice and cognac,) is about $10 here, $22-$25 in various parts of the states. We are duty free. Liquor is basically less than half the price of what you pay on the mainland. There are also plenty of alcoholics, so you have a built in business in addition to all the tourists. Mixers however are very expensive, and drinks are usually made quite strong. For some reason, wine is no cheaper than the mainland, and I have no clue about beer. We have a rum distillery here on St. Croix which makes very good rum very cheaply.

Rent doesn't have to be bad if you just have a shack on the beach. "Lattitudes" on the west end of STX is just that. Utilities are outrageously expensive and intermittent. You could easily be without electricity for extended periods of time. The work ethic leaves much to be desired, and many have a particularly nasty disposition to work. Rudeness is common and an accepted way of life with many though not all locals. Fortunately, there are also plenty of beach bum mainlanders for whom a bar fly job may just be perfect.

The tourist flow gets pretty light in the summer, which is unfortunate since I think that is our best weather with the exception of the hurricanes. The weather is 90-95 in the summer with little humidity or rain, and a great breeze. The water is like a bath tub filled with warm turquoise water. I am too acclimated to swim here in the winter anymore though it is around 85F. The waters cool off to the high 70s and it is just too cold for me.

The government regulations and health board I hear constant complaints about from friends who own places. The Buffet theme is quite rampant already with the above mentioned "Lattitudes" and a restaurant/bar "Cheeseburgers in Paradise".

Definitely visit an area extensively before making any move. Go online and read the online version of the local paper. The coolest bar/restaurant I have ever visited is in the BVIs, on, or rather offshore of, Norman island IIR. It is actually on a boat anchored in a harbor of this relatively deserted island. The sailing charters are it's main clientel, and it is outrageously fun.

Best of luck. Quite the dream.

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