long term goal

From: Adam Randall

I have never realy talked about it much, however after touring the south pacific extensively (thanks to the RAN). I decided years ago I wanted to own a small resort on an island where it is warm all year round and pina colada's flow like water from 6am onwards, and young frustrated mothers in manicured 2 tonne assualt vehicles are a distant memory.
After a fair bit of research (and considerable dreaming) I have worked out the minimum amount needed for a half decent resort in a semi stable country would be around 1.5M - 2.5M.
I do not like the idea of lease hold which at this time excludes Vanuatu (my prefered choice otherwise). Fiji seems nice has freehold land however the government is slightly unstable. Polynesia (aaahhh) well I can't even afford to go on holiday there, let alone buy a resort.
Does anyone have eperience with running a small resort (no more than 18 rooms) in the south pacific.
I had a long conversation with a lady called Eileen I think her name was, she owned and ran the Bouganville resort on the island of Espirito Santo in Vanuatu, they had been doing that for 6 years at that stage (about 8 years ago), she had highly reccommended giving it a go.
The other question would be how much capital should I have behind me, and how would I approach a bank (I can see the look on their face now) regarding finance for an ofshore investment.
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Reply: 1
From: Ethan Smith

HI Adam,

For what it's worth, I just wanted to say your idea sounds great, and it's always nice to see people brave enough to pursue their dreams. I don't know if this will help much, but I remember seeing an episode on "Getaway" or "The Great Outdoors" (can't remember which, but getaway sounds more likely). It was about 2 australian surfers who started up their own resort. If you did a search of the getaway website and found the names of these guys, you might be able to get in touch with them and find out how they did it.

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Reply: 1.1
From: Jeremy Laws

I cant remember exactly who I spoke to at length but web address southpacificrealestate.com/southpacificinvestments.com or Pacific Island Resorts were amazing for information. Try http://www.angelfire.com/ca5/islands/ You would also be surprised how affordable (relatively) Tahiti can be. A black pearl farm for $1mUSD netting $500kpa for example. This was a few years ago though. Read up all you can on Vaughan (?)Bullivant and Daydream Island in Qld. He has so far chewed through 80m I think and is still losing. Don't rule out the Cook Islands. Tourism increasing, more flights, tax free and still relatively unknown. One of the hardest things you will face is keeping things working and labour problems. Fiji time is a real thing! You can lose a LOT of money in resorts. A LOT! You are dependant on a LOT of things going right for you. War, Fuel prices, Terrorism, Airlines, Economy/Disposable incomes staying high, Cyclones, tribal warfare (Tahiti/Fiji par example) oh - and French Nuclear testing/Oil tanker problems. Look at all the amazing deals on the net if you want to stay in one. Do you think they are making money on those? I would give private finance a go. Westpac (as you would know) has branches throughout the Pacific, and could possibly let you know what is required. Experience plus a lot of downpayment (>30% my guess) would be the go. When I looked, we had a lot of private money to rely on (which as it turned out we couldnt rely on) Having said all that, they would be fun for a while.....
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Reply: 1.1.1
From: Adam Randall

Thanks for the tips.
The reason it is a long term goal is because I do not wan't financial pressures ie mortgage repayments (not highly geared anyway)etc, and the need to have the resort at at least 50% capacity to make ends meet, if no-one turns up for a couple of weeks, I'll pick up a rod and go fishing.
It would be more of a lifestyle choice than to turn a profit. I know what you mean about the locals and rubber time, who knows after a few years in one of these places I might throw my watch away as well.
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