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First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Dasher
February 25, 2016 05:53PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 14

Well, I've finally screwed up enough courage to make my first post here. I've been reading posts and threads nearly every day of the week, trying to eliminate needless questions. Everyone's threads and posts have been quite informative and entertaining to say the least!

My wife and I live in Atlanta, GA and we've been thinking about retiring and relocating to St. Croix in the coming 5-7 years. (Her elderly parents are one of the few reasons we are still here.) Like most nearly everyone else here on the mainland, we've been watching the "Beachfront Bargain Hunt" show and are interested to see if the reality matches up with the presentation.

We are visiting St. Croix this March 12 - 16. We'll have a rental car and we're staying at Tamarind Reef. We'll be visiting with a real estate agent either Monday or Tuesday, looking at some houses, Geographically, I guess in the range of La Vallee to the East End. Zillow has been a good resource for getting an idea of what is on the market, how long it's been on the market, and asking price.

I've just been through nearly 10 pages of the 80+ page thread of "St. Croix Restaurant Ratings" and think I have a list of about 8-10 places to further research. Given time I may venture further into that thread.

So, in an effort to conduct the most efficient and yet thorough Pre-Move Visit, have I left anything, or can I leave anything off, this list:

* Look at houses
* Go to the grocery store(s)
* Visit the hospital(s) / pharmacy
* Be sure to engage in courteous exchanges: "Good Morning / Afternoon / Evening"
* Try all the "local food" we can
* Enjoy the beach - we aren't certified to dive, but we will snorkel and swim every chance we can.

How's that list look for the very first PMV of a prospective transplant? We will really only have Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday to spend covering the above list. We arrive later in the day on Saturday and leave in the middle of the day Wednesday. And one final question, will we have an opportunity to enjoy the "Sunday Funday"?

Thank you in advance for any suggestions that will save time and money on our first PMV. We're getting quite excited!

Dan
Atlanta, GA

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

lescooper
February 25, 2016 06:36PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 78

Sounds like you have done your homework but three days is not nearly enough time to experience the island. Especially if you are going to be looking at homes. Why such a short visit?

St Croix does still offers the best real estate values in the carribean. We recently bought a condo in Christenstead for half of what they were selling for just 3-4 years ago. However the market does seem to have bottomed out and will probably be on the rise. Don't expect to be able to buy at today's prices 5 -7 years from now.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!
avatar

rotorhead
February 25, 2016 06:39PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 2,444

As for the restaurant thread, start at the back and work forward. Restaurants tend to have a short life here. Many of the popular ones have closed recently, Tuto Bene, Kendricks, Eat, etc. If you share your list we can tell you whether they are still open or not.

No one says "good evening", here it is always "good night" whether you are coming or going.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

OldTart
February 25, 2016 06:47PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 6,524

In just three days of a PMV, suggest you eliminate from the list, "we will snorkel and swim every chance we can." big grin

Also, I don't ever remember that St Croix differs from the other islands where the evening salutation is concerned. "Good Evening" and "Good Night" are interchangeable and used equally.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Dasher
February 25, 2016 06:55PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 14

Quote
lescooper
Sounds like you have done your homework but three days is not nearly enough time to experience the island. Especially if you are going to be looking at homes. Why such a short visit?

St Croix does still offers the best real estate values in the carribean. We recently bought a condo in Christenstead for half of what they were selling for just 3-4 years ago. However the market does seem to have bottomed out and will probably be on the rise. Don't expect to be able to buy at today's prices 5 -7 years from now.

A short visit indeed! Truly, we just thought a quick first visit would really help us make a decision. We've been looking at homes and have about 4 picked out that really "tick all our boxes". The real estate agent we're working with will then come up with 3 or 4 houses and we'll take it from there.

Good point about the housing prices - thanks so much for your reply!

Dan

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Dasher
February 25, 2016 06:58PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 14

Quote
rotorhead
As for the restaurant thread, start at the back and work forward. Restaurants tend to have a short life here. Many of the popular ones have closed recently, Tuto Bene, Kendricks, Eat, etc. If you share your list we can tell you whether they are still open or not.

No one says "good evening", here it is always "good night" whether you are coming or going.


LOL - I should have thought about reading from the back! Let me see what I have:

Off the Wall
Salud!
Rowdy Joe's
La Reine Chicken Shack
Miss Kims
Golden Rail (breakfast)
and the Ft. Christian Brew Pub

Tutu Bene was on the list.

Thank you for your reply,

Dan

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Dasher
February 25, 2016 07:02PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 14

Quote
OldTart
In just three days of a PMV, suggest you eliminate from the list, "we will snorkel and swim every chance we can." big grin

Awww, and not come back to ATL with a sun tan (or burn, heaven forbid)? LOL - it's been a cold wet winter here, we MUST get our feet sandy and wet, Old Tart!

Thank you for your reply!

Dan

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!
avatar

rotorhead
February 25, 2016 07:10PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 2,444

Quote
Dasher
LOL - I should have thought about reading from the back! Let me see what I have:

Off the Wall
Salud!
Rowdy Joe's
La Reine Chicken Shack
Miss Kims
Golden Rail (breakfast)
and the Ft. Christian Brew Pub

Tutu Bene was on the list.

Thank you for your reply,

Dan

All good except be aware that the Golden Rail has moved from St Croix Marine to Mill Harbor Condos.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

janeinstx
February 25, 2016 07:55PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 613

Come to Off the Wall on Tiesday night for Bingo and introduce yourself to the BINGO caller wink

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

watruw8ing4
February 25, 2016 08:00PM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 849

Quote
rotorhead
Quote
Dasher
LOL - I should have thought about reading from the back! Let me see what I have:

Off the Wall
Salud!
Rowdy Joe's
La Reine Chicken Shack
Miss Kims
Golden Rail (breakfast)
and the Ft. Christian Brew Pub

Tutu Bene was on the list.

Thank you for your reply,

Dan

All good except be aware that the Golden Rail has moved from St Croix Marine to Mill Harbor Condos.

And also be aware that Ft Christian Brew Pub is just a shadow of its former self.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!
avatar

rotorhead
February 25, 2016 08:14PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 2,444

Just an FYI. If you want Caribbean food, instead/in addition to Kim's, I usually do Singh's for lunch. Roti's and doubles. Roast Pork on Friday. Or I do El Sol for dinner. Stew Goat on Thursday. Yucca Fries are a favorite.

Singh's is Trini food. El Sol is Dominican/Puerto Rican.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Scubadoo
February 25, 2016 10:17PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 1,733

Quote
watruw8ing4
Quote
rotorhead
Quote
Dasher
LOL - I should have thought about reading from the back! Let me see what I have:

Off the Wall
Salud!
Rowdy Joe's
La Reine Chicken Shack
Miss Kims
Golden Rail (breakfast)
and the Ft. Christian Brew Pub

Tutu Bene was on the list.

Thank you for your reply,

Dan

All good except be aware that the Golden Rail has moved from St Croix Marine to Mill Harbor Condos.

And also be aware that Ft Christian Brew Pub is just a shadow of its former self.

I'd suggest Rumrunners instead unless you are just going for the beer and be sure to wave at the web cam.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!
avatar

Dante
February 25, 2016 10:42PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 253

Quote
rotorhead
Just an FYI. If you want Caribbean food, instead/in addition to Kim's, I usually do Singh's for lunch. Roti's and doubles. Roast Pork on Friday. Or I do El Sol for dinner. Stew Goat on Thursday. Yucca Fries are a favorite.

Singh's is Trini food. El Sol is Dominican/Puerto Rican.

You mentioned all of my favorites as well smiling

I have to add Zennys to the list .

All great places !

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!
avatar

Dante
February 25, 2016 11:01PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 253

Quote
OldTart
In just three days of a PMV, suggest you eliminate from the list, "we will snorkel and swim every chance we can." big grin

Also, I don't ever remember that St Croix differs from the other islands where the evening salutation is concerned. "Good Evening" and "Good Night" are interchangeable and used equally.

On St. Croix , at least in my experience, it is rare to hear a "Good Evening " almost always a "Good Night "

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

AandA2VI
February 26, 2016 01:09AM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 2,088

Why does everyone like the chicken shack???? I would rather have a CUL chicken. Hell I make one in my smoker that kicks the shack chicken up and down the block. I've gone like 6 times thinking one of the times it would be that WOW that everyone says but its never been that good... at all.

Rowdys - OK.
Kims - OK
Not impressed with the rest on that list.

Galangal and Zion two of my favs... not sure if they qualify as local food though. Had blue moon tonight and had 4 apps and two desserts. All was really good. We wanted to try Turtles after dark tonight but they were too overwhelmed to serve us... with like 4 tables...

If you want local food just drive around and stop at random food trucks. I miss the STT food trucks - still haven't found a pate better than the lady by the BMV - STT. And the goat wata from the truck near coki. SO GOOD. I recently stopped at the St. Lucian place on the corner down the road from Cruzan... in front of the pharmacy. The BEST lentils EVER - good unique flavors - super awesome people.

I guess I judge food based on if I can make it or not - my hunny and I are pretty good in the kitchen and together make one hell of a dinner party so I want something I cant easily make myself, I think we might be a bit of food snobs too lol.

Three days isn't much time at all - you'll just be getting your bearings but PLEASE check out west. East is so friggin dry and HOT. I just cant live out there - I moved here from Arizona I need GREEN and refuse to live where cactus grows lol. I live close to the rainforest and well - ya gotta love bugs to live out here but I love the vibe and the temps especially although it can get a bit boring - the beaches are so beautiful. Right now the sounds of the frogs, crickets and threshers (not sleeping because the moon I assume) are just so dang relaxing! Its cool too - I actually have sweats on right now. I also don't want a $300 -$500 WAPA bill that comes with east living (AC) nor my car (thats black) to be baking in the sun. I get the draw for east end but I just couldn't live out there. Diving the pier out west every day doesn't bother me either - seahorses, frogfish, octos, eagle rays and turtles and if I get bored I pop over to cane bay and see my shark friends. <3 Them.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Rowdy802
February 26, 2016 08:10AM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 508

"Off the Wall", great Calzones
"Blues Backyard", the ribs...

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!
avatar

Dante
February 26, 2016 10:59AM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 253

Quote
AandA2VI
Why does everyone like the chicken shack???? I would rather have a CUL chicken. Hell I make one in my smoker that kicks the shack chicken up and down the block.

I am with you , I think it is just "ok"

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Dasher
February 26, 2016 11:00AM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 14

Quote
AandA2VI

Three days isn't much time at all - you'll just be getting your bearings but PLEASE check out west. East is so friggin dry and HOT. I just cant live out there - I moved here from Arizona I need GREEN and refuse to live where cactus grows lol. I live close to the rainforest and well - ya gotta love bugs to live out here but I love the vibe and the temps especially although it can get a bit boring - the beaches are so beautiful. Right now the sounds of the frogs, crickets and threshers (not sleeping because the moon I assume) are just so dang relaxing! Its cool too - I actually have sweats on right now. I also don't want a $300 -$500 WAPA bill that comes with east living (AC) nor my car (thats black) to be baking in the sun. I get the draw for east end but I just couldn't live out there. Diving the pier out west every day doesn't bother me either - seahorses, frogfish, octos, eagle rays and turtles and if I get bored I pop over to cane bay and see my shark friends. <3 Them.

Excellent points - we are planning on spending a day in F'sted/out west. Probably Tuesday.

Due to the fact that we're still a bit removed from retiring, we really thought 3 full days was plenty of time to get a good first impression of island life.

From a lot of our reading my wife I and I have tried to do impromptu "reality checks" when we are out and about here in ATL:

We get our power bill on a budget-billing plan: $192 a month here in ATL - "double that for WAPA"

We go to Kroger's for our Sunday shopping - "there won't be this many varieties of tomatoes on St. Croix"

I have freshwater fish tanks in our basement - "gotta pare it down to one tank for St. Croix, water is too valuable"

And so on and so forth. Moving to an island opens up all new challenges and opportunities, no doubt.

Thank you for speaking up for the F'sted/West End. We absolutely agree with you regarding the arid dry landscape of the East End vs the wetter West End. We're looking at a house with the address of La Vallee and it is very green and overgrown!

Happy Friday!

Dan

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!
avatar

Dante
February 26, 2016 11:34AM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 253

Quote
Dante
Quote
rotorhead
Just an FYI. If you want Caribbean food, instead/in addition to Kim's, I usually do Singh's for lunch. Roti's and doubles. Roast Pork on Friday. Or I do El Sol for dinner. Stew Goat on Thursday. Yucca Fries are a favorite.

Singh's is Trini food. El Sol is Dominican/Puerto Rican.

You mentioned all of my favorites as well smiling

I have to add Zennys to the list .

All great places !

Oh , and ACE Roti ... Great food and she is a sweet lady .

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

AandA2VI
February 26, 2016 01:25PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 2,088

Quote
Dasher
Quote
AandA2VI

Three days isn't much time at all - you'll just be getting your bearings but PLEASE check out west. East is so friggin dry and HOT. I just cant live out there - I moved here from Arizona I need GREEN and refuse to live where cactus grows lol. I live close to the rainforest and well - ya gotta love bugs to live out here but I love the vibe and the temps especially although it can get a bit boring - the beaches are so beautiful. Right now the sounds of the frogs, crickets and threshers (not sleeping because the moon I assume) are just so dang relaxing! Its cool too - I actually have sweats on right now. I also don't want a $300 -$500 WAPA bill that comes with east living (AC) nor my car (thats black) to be baking in the sun. I get the draw for east end but I just couldn't live out there. Diving the pier out west every day doesn't bother me either - seahorses, frogfish, octos, eagle rays and turtles and if I get bored I pop over to cane bay and see my shark friends. <3 Them.

Excellent points - we are planning on spending a day in F'sted/out west. Probably Tuesday.

Due to the fact that we're still a bit removed from retiring, we really thought 3 full days was plenty of time to get a good first impression of island life.

From a lot of our reading my wife I and I have tried to do impromptu "reality checks" when we are out and about here in ATL:

We get our power bill on a budget-billing plan: $192 a month here in ATL - "double that for WAPA"

We go to Kroger's for our Sunday shopping - "there won't be this many varieties of tomatoes on St. Croix"

I have freshwater fish tanks in our basement - "gotta pare it down to one tank for St. Croix, water is too valuable"

And so on and so forth. Moving to an island opens up all new challenges and opportunities, no doubt.

Thank you for speaking up for the F'sted/West End. We absolutely agree with you regarding the arid dry landscape of the East End vs the wetter West End. We're looking at a house with the address of La Vallee and it is very green and overgrown!

Happy Friday!

Dan

If you come out West send me a PM and I will met you for a drink out at the beach.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

AandA2VI
February 26, 2016 01:36PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 2,088

Quote
Dasher
Quote
AandA2VI

Three days isn't much time at all - you'll just be getting your bearings but PLEASE check out west. East is so friggin dry and HOT. I just cant live out there - I moved here from Arizona I need GREEN and refuse to live where cactus grows lol. I live close to the rainforest and well - ya gotta love bugs to live out here but I love the vibe and the temps especially although it can get a bit boring - the beaches are so beautiful. Right now the sounds of the frogs, crickets and threshers (not sleeping because the moon I assume) are just so dang relaxing! Its cool too - I actually have sweats on right now. I also don't want a $300 -$500 WAPA bill that comes with east living (AC) nor my car (thats black) to be baking in the sun. I get the draw for east end but I just couldn't live out there. Diving the pier out west every day doesn't bother me either - seahorses, frogfish, octos, eagle rays and turtles and if I get bored I pop over to cane bay and see my shark friends. <3 Them.

Excellent points - we are planning on spending a day in F'sted/out west. Probably Tuesday.

Due to the fact that we're still a bit removed from retiring, we really thought 3 full days was plenty of time to get a good first impression of island life.

From a lot of our reading my wife I and I have tried to do impromptu "reality checks" when we are out and about here in ATL:

We get our power bill on a budget-billing plan: $192 a month here in ATL - "double that for WAPA"

We go to Kroger's for our Sunday shopping - "there won't be this many varieties of tomatoes on St. Croix"

I have freshwater fish tanks in our basement - "gotta pare it down to one tank for St. Croix, water is too valuable"

And so on and so forth. Moving to an island opens up all new challenges and opportunities, no doubt.

Thank you for speaking up for the F'sted/West End. We absolutely agree with you regarding the arid dry landscape of the East End vs the wetter West End. We're looking at a house with the address of La Vallee and it is very green and overgrown!

Happy Friday!

Dan

If you live east - at least double since youll likely need AC. If not it should be the same. My bill this month was $60!!!!!!! Hasn't been over $100 since we moved to STX - $140-$150 in STT but that was before the rates dropped. No AC - no microwave - we do have a dishwasher in this house - and regular bulbs and electric washer/dryer. No kids.

STX has AMAZING local produce! best tomatoes I've ever had. I will miss that so much when I move back to STT. Also grass fed beef from Analay farms. Ive lost 30lbs here - cutting out processed crap and eating mostly local goodies. I get my eggs from the place in the rainforest - most my veggies from stands or Quality foods. Quality has the mini heirloom tomatoes. I get 4 pounds and we eat them in 4 days. They're unbelievable. Local eggplant & beet greens some of my fav too.

Yes for the fish. The problem is not the water - well maybe if you live east lol - rains at my house pretty much every night/morning - but its the electricity to run the filters. I would love nothing more than to have a reef tank and propagate some corals but its just too unstable a power grid. Not just outages but surges and such. I have a beautiful giant 6gallon beta bowl with all live plants, snails and shrimps thats a complete ecosystem. Its fun and I cant be without a fish in my house.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Alana33
February 26, 2016 02:23PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 11,584

Swim, snorkel and enjoy.
You can sleep when you get home.
Have fun tho I'm sure you'll wish you'd planned for at least a week pmv.

Re: First St. Croix PMV & First Post - Hello!

Scubadoo
February 27, 2016 12:25AM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 1,733

Quote
Dante
Oh , and ACE Roti ... Great food and she is a sweet lady .

thumbs up Only open for lunch and only Tues - Sat so Tues is probably the only day you can make it. And there is only a picnic table or two for "dine in".

3 days is not enough to blink but at least it will be 3 full days.

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