Want to get away from the “rat race” to start living and working in your dream location?
Inns, boutique hotels, B&Bs, and even restaurants can be great business options if you seek to make a lifestyle change that includes operating a new or existing hospitality enterprise overseas.
As a Reuter`s article recently noted, “the COVID-19 pandemic will mean holiday-goers will shy away from larger hotels for the foreseeable future in favor of boutiques and home rentals . . .”
A lifestyle business is defined as a business set up and run by its founders primarily with the aim of sustaining a particular level of income while also providing a foundation from which to enjoy a particular lifestyle. Some types of enterprises are more accessible than others to the would-be lifestyle businessperson. Those requiring extensive capital (think car manufacturing) are difficult to launch and sustain on a lifestyle basis, while others such as small creative industries or hospitality businesses are more practical for sole practitioners or small groups such as spousal teams.
Lifestyle businesses typically are not hugely scalable since this kind of growth would destroy the lifestyle for which their owner-managers set them up. However, lifestyle businesses can and do win awards and provide satisfaction to their owners and customers. Obviously, substantial growth can occur in a hospitality lifestyle business, such as a boutique hotel appealing to an upscale market. This is truer in Panama than many jurisdictions due to factors such as
- Relatively Simple Residency Process for Foreigners
- Tax free offshore investing
- Special economic zones
- Tourism Investment Incentives through Tax Credits
- Attractive cap rates for real estate investments
With 25+ years of experience starting and running small hospitality businesses, Charlie Leary has first-hand knowledge of lifestyle businesses and their potential. He grew a hotel in Canada from 2 employees and under $70,000 in annual revenue to 25 employees and one million dollars in revenue (in just 5 months of annual operation).
Now as a RE/MAX agent and advisor, Charlie assists in locating the best opportunities in this sector in Panama. He has operated small hotels, vacation rental properties, and restaurants around the world, including Central America. His knowledge extends to the complexities involved in moving abroad, gaining residency, and more importantly, the logistics and economics of starting and/or running a small hospitality business.
The potential is great. As one recent article on the boutique hotel sector noted in February, 2021:
“Small stays and boutique hotels are already starting to see a surge in demand. Going by feedback from property owners, most guests prefer to stay in smaller properties to keep pandemic worries in check. It seems the preferences are towards properties with open spaces, without central air-conditioning, and for rooms with balconies that allow fresh airflow. Besides, many guests are opting for boutique hotels for personalized holiday experiences that make their stay more memorable and unique.”
Panama has a number of spectacular opportunities for making that switch and starting your new lifestyle business! Whether you are seeking out Pacific beaches, a spot in the Caribbean paradise of Bocas del Toro, or a mountain hideaway with a cooler climate, you can find it all in Panama.
Charlie Leary’s services extend not just to searching for the appropriate property and/or business, but also assisting in analyzing the numbers and advising on operations, marketing, revenue strategy, and the like. He can also advise on the details of starting a hospitality business from scratch, including building your dream hotel or B&B.
“I have a list of confidential hospitality properties as well as developable land now on the market that current owners do not necessarily want publicly advertised. So please contact me with your ideas, requirements, and dreams!” he stated. Panama has a rich diversity of possibilities on offer!
Contact Charlie below to schedule a consultation.