Articles Tagged "Shop Local in The Bahamas"

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October
18

Wedding Venues - The Bahamas - Morley

The sunny shores and balmy breezes of the Bahamas Islands draw many couples to the country for destination weddings. However, choosing the general location is only the first step in finding the perfect setting for your nuptials. Choosing the right venue could take your ceremony from memorable to downright magical. 

There are dozens of wedding venues around our Nassau and Paradise Island homes for sale and many more sprinkled around the out islands like the Exumas and the Abacos. Here are a few venues we've found most captivating while living in The Bahamas.

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July
25

Ice Cream Shops - Nassau, The Bahamas - Morley

Some say heaven is a ballfield in Iowa or country roads in West Virginia. For our agents, it's ice cream on a beach in The Bahamas. Get your favorite creamy treat at one of these wonderful shops near Nassau homes for sale.

  • Main Street Ice Cream Parlor - Bay Street, Nassau, Bahamas
    Tucked away on the second floor above a souvenir shop, Main Street Ice Cream Parlor is as charming as the name sounds. With nearly three dozen flavors, including premium brands such as Edy's and Haagen-Dazs, choose your favorite or find a new one. Try the signature rum cake sundae and take home some of the handmade fudge. Enjoy your ice cream out on the balcony seating for some prime people-watching down below. Hours are 9:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. daily.

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July
6

Fine Dining - Visit The Bahamas - Morley

One of the best ways to get to know a culture is to experience its cuisine. This is as true in The Bahamas as anywhere else. Whether visiting The Bahamas for the first time or thinking of making the islands your home, you simply must dine at some of the local restaurants. Here are a few of the top dining destinations our agents recommend.

  1. Social House: 1 Skyline Drive, Nassau, The Bahamas
    Social House is the place to go if you love sushi and are looking at Nassau homes for sale. The restaurant itself has a modern vibe with colorful, lively decor. On the menu, you'll find selections like the Seared Nigiri Sampler platter, Tuna Tataki, and Beef Gyoza.

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May
23

Open-Air Markets - Nassau, The Bahamas - Morley

Nassau, The Bahamas has plenty of open-air markets that are not only fun to visit but also sell a variety of interesting goods. From hand-woven items to fish that's offered for sale straight off the boat that's been used to catch it, you'll find plenty of tempting purchases at these markets.

Our agents suggest making a stop at the following open-air markets in Nassau.

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April
11

Live Music - Bahamas - Morley

Music filling the air is one of the hallmarks of island life. When our agents want to get in the groove, they head out to one of these great spots that feature live music around Nassau and Paradise Island homes for sale. 

  • The Green Parrot - Harbour Front, East Bay Street, Nassau, Bahamas
    Is there a more perfect visual to identify with the islands than The Green Parrot? This restaurant started as a simple grill top at the Hurricane Hole Marina Bar. In 2006, The Green Parrot moved to a larger building near East Bay Street homes for sale to accommodate the ever-increasing number of customers. Indulge in their signature lobster specials while listening to bands like Long Island Connection, appearing on the second and fourth Saturdays of the month. Hours are 7 a.m. - 10 p.m. daily, while the bar is open until 11:59 p.m.

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April
4

Top Dive Sites - The Bahamas - Morley

The Bahamas is rife with beauty at every turn. Between the gorgeous views, amazing people, and exciting activities, Nassau and Paradise Island homes for sale often get snatched up quickly. Many residents and people visiting The Bahamas love diving into one of the many hotspots located in the area, and our agents would like to share some of their favorites.

  • Mermaid Reef - Abaco
    A gorgeous little reef is located in the Sea of Abaco, Mermaid Reef is perfect for beginning divers. Every day, you'll find the place filled with snorkelers and paddleboarders who love taking in the sights. When you dive, you'll come across many friendly fish that are comfortable with humans and will come right up to you. It's basically like diving inside a fish tank, and some visitors bring small pieces of food such as frozen peas to feed some of the fish that get near them. Be sure to tour these Abaco homes for sale after your dive.

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March
30

Dessert Around Nassau - Morley

Have you ever realized that "stressed" is "desserts" spelled backward? When our agents need some balance in their lives, they head to these five amazing dessert spots around Nassau and Paradise Island homes for sale

  1. Original Swiss Sweet Shop - Cable Beach West
    The name is a bit of a tongue-twister, but everything else about the Original Swiss Sweet Shop is deliciously simple. After learning the secrets of pastry-making in Switzerland and other European countries, owner Armin Wernli came to The Bahamas 10 years ago to work at two local resorts. Now he creates mouthwatering treats such as Black Forest cake, Napoleons, and Key lime pie in his own bakery, down the street from Cable Beach homes for sale. Hours are 8:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. Saturday.

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March
16

Restaurants for Tropical Drinks - The Bahamas

There are so many things to love about The Bahamas that it should come as no surprise that Nassau and Paradise Island homes for sale have always been extremely popular. One thing that you can't escape is the lost list of tropical drinks available throughout the islands. To give you an idea of what to expect, we've put together six of our favorite places to grab a drink, enjoy a meal, and have fun.

  1. The Daiquiri Shack – West Bay Street, Nassau
    With a name like The Daiquiri Shack, you probably already get the gist of what this place is all about. Newcomers are always delighted by the large amount of fresh fruit that adorns their walls—and the pleasant scene is amazing. They feature a great little outdoor bar where you and friends can hang out and are especially known for their coconut and watermelon daiquiris. Just keep in mind that it's a small place, so it can sometimes get a bit crowded at peak times. Plan a visit after looking at West Bay Street homes for sale.

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February
14

Out Islands - The Abacos & Eleuthera - Morley

Life in the Bahamas is generally idyllic, but there is much more to this stunning part of the world than just New Providence.  

On the out islands, you'll find a peaceful atmosphere and natural wonders, unlike anything you knew existed. This designation includes hundreds of islands, both big and small, but there are some clear standouts in this group. Our agents have compiled some highlights from The Abacos and Eleuthera to give you a better idea of what life is like in these untamed paradises.

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February
7

Resort Sunrises and Sunsets - Visiting The Bahamas - Morley

It's no secret that when people visit The Bahamas, they're usually struck by how beautiful the islands really are. When clients look at Nassau and Paradise Island homes for sale, they're always impressed by the natural beauty. The sunrises and sunsets are particularly breathtaking, especially when you take the time to enjoy them at one of the following resorts.

  1. The Cove: Queens Highway, Eleuthera, Bahamas
    The Cove is a lovely, quiet resort on the island of Eleuthera. It's a great place to see the sunset after looking at Eleuthera homes for sale.

    The resort itself is situated between two white-sand coves. You can gaze out onto the water as the sun sets lower in the sky. Kayaking and paddleboarding are also available, along with an infinity pool.

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November
30

Christmas Shopping - Nassau, Bahamas - Morley Realty

The holiday season is here! For many people, gift-giving is a big part of the holiday celebration. And if you're going to give gifts, you need to find a great place to shop. Nassau is brimming with local shops and businesses where you can find all sorts of unique clothing, accessories, decor, and more. Here are some of the top spots our agents recommend for Christmas shopping around Nassau and Paradise Island.

  1. Marina Village at Atlantis
    Marina Village, located directly next to Atlantis, features more than 65,000 square feet of retail space, making it the perfect place to shop for Christmas gifts. The outdoor marketplace is beautifully landscaped with palm trees and native plants, so even walking from store to store is a lovely experience.

    Some of the key retailers at Marina Village include Paradise Blue Surf Shop and Pirana Joe Resort Wear. You could buy a loved one some jewelry at Columbian Emeralds International and then stop for a burger at The Village Burger Shack.

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November
16

Work From Home in the Bahamas - Morley Realty

Our agents know that the beauty of the Bahamas is becoming attractive to more Americans who no longer need to worry about commuting to work. Working remotely saves the average person thousands of dollars each year to reinvest for a better life.

Many remote workers now have the opportunity to become fully location-independent. Freed from the shackles of an office, they can do whatever they do from a world away. It's no surprise that the blue skies and sun-drenched beaches of the Bahamas are getting more attention.

Nassau and Paradise Island homes for sale are getting a closer look. However, not everyone realizes that a home in the Caribbean really is attainable. They worry that they will not be able to buy property in the Caribbean or that it will be a very different process than they're used to.

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June
23

Achieving a lush, healthy lawn in our tropical climate, almost seems a no-brainer. Warmer climates however, place unique demands on yards and gardens. Sunnier, high-humidity environments like ours result in faster plant growth than in relatively cooler parts of the world; but watching your grass grow and grow and grow can be just as problematic and watching it dry off and die. Extreme humidity, intense heat, and heavy rains are other issues that frequently plague tropical climate lawns and other plants. To ensure your lawn does not resemble a jungle, it is important for maintain regular pruning and other upkeep, throughout the year.

 

During the hot humid months, from April through to October, lawns are in their element as regular summer storms bring torrential rain. This usually means lush green leaf growth that, at times, appears to be out of control. Good lawn maintenance can keep this rapid growth period at bay as well as maintain a green, healthy lawn during the cooler months.

An important part of lawn maintenance is checking the pH of your lawn during the wet season. Fertilizing is not recommended at that time, as it will promote vigorous leaf growth, which, for now, is not necessary. More than likely, you will already be watching your lawn grow before your eyes yet be unable to mow due to the rain. Instead, you can apply lime and gypsum to the soil as these acts as a soil conditioner and keeps the pH up. Due to the region's high rainfall, soils can become very acidic which can affect the health of the plant growth. The addition of lime to your yard care routine, maintains a good pH balance and promotes the uptake of soil nutrients. Gypsum is a clay breaker. One of the reasons soils is compacted and like concrete in most backyards is due to initial building activity. Usually, much of the topsoil is taken away during home construction and the ground is compacted making it difficult for water to penetrate the soil. Gypsum is good for breaking down clay soils enabling the water to penetrate. 

Another wet-weather-must is to keep lawn mowing equipment in good working order. There is nothing worse when there is a break in the weather, and you are unable to mow because of failing lawn equipment due to poor maintenance. Be prepared by having mowers and other equipment fueled and ready to go. Sharp mower blades are essential to ensure the lawn has a clean, even cut. Unbalanced, blunt blades often leave a yard looking hacked and untidy. The success to an even, tidy lawn is weekly trims in the summer months, whenever possible. This will keep lawn clipping to a minimum. During the cooler and less wet months, mow every two to three weeks to keep the lawns immaculate.

After the wet season around October-November, is the perfect time to apply good a quality slow-release fertilizer to keep the lush growth achieved during the wet season. Once you have applied fertilizer, water in well as this will help keep thick leaf cover, reduce moisture loss, and keep your lawn actively growing. Pull the mower deck up one notch to leave more leaf on the grass, as this will also help reduce moisture loss within the soil.

In November, reapply the slow-release fertilizer before generally cooler temps set in. This is a must-do job as it will keep lawns green and healthy throughout the tropic's mild winter.  Depending on your variety of turf, follow a recommended water schedule; whether weekly or fortnightly. This watering method is better than small top ups every night as it promotes the deep root system growth needed for a healthy lawn.

April is another good time to apply slow-release fertilizer as it will help the recovery from the winter months. Again, a good, deep watering is required. Now is the time to lower the mower deck back to the summer mowing height.

May brings spring and a burst of activity, completing the annual cycle. Birds are building nests; flowers are blooming, and worms are getting ready to launch their attack on lush green lawns. Healthy green lawns are perfect sites for pest eggs. An environmentally safe pesticide should be on hand during springtime to counterattack and ensure a healthy lawn, year-round.

May
12

Between Mother's Day just recently and Earth Day, there's been a lot of focus around family and our health. There's also been a lot of talk about sustainable food practices on a local level. All this chatter has us thinking - where can we source natural, homegrown foods? The answer is simple and right under our noses - when it comes to local markets in New Providence, all roads lead to the Gladstone Road Farmer's Market!

Now open on Fridays and Saturdays, between 8am - 4pm, the Gladstone Road Farmer's Market is packed full of wholesome goodies, entertainment, and educational opportunities for the kids (and big kids)! And while the main focus is on fresh fruits and veggies, we're happy to share that here, you'll also find fresh-made juices and teas, homemade sweets and treats, and a healthy dose of delicious Bahamian fare! What better way to spend a Saturday morning :) 

As you enter the grounds, first up, you'll find JR's Farm. Farmer Jetta Rolle has a farm on Cowpen Road west, where she grows a long list of healthy vegetables and leafy greens. Originally a Grower with the Ministry of Agriculture for several years before developing her farm, Ms. Rolle has years of experience and knowledge when it comes to local farming practices. At The Market, she sells $1 seedlings like beets, lettuce, collard greens, cauliflower, broccoli, sweet pepper, tomatoes, onions, and herbs. She also sells her greens, veggies, and herbs but claims proudly that most people come to her, particularly for her broccoli and cauliflower. 

Fresh Produce at the Gladstone Road Farmer's Market

For Whitlyn Miller, farming comes naturally. A horticulturalist and retired teacher by profession, Ms. Miller sells the fresh fruits and vegetables at her stand. She also sells vegan and vegetarian snacks and desserts, plus veggies for small-batch pickling. You'll find her at her farm stand, where she's always eager to share her knowledge and chat about growing and harvesting techniques, weather conditions, new recipes, and the great varieties of fruits and veggies we can grow. A little-known fact - she invented "cracked coconut." If you haven't tried it, you're definitely missing out! 

Not only do freshly-grown veggies taste better, but they're chock full of nutrients without any added unwanteds! They don't need to have a long shelf life to make an international trip. They're harvested straight from the soil, cleaned, and ready to go! Natasha Adderly would agree. With her Bahama Island Farms, she's another one of the local vendors at the Gladstone Road Farmer's Market. She specializes in salad mixes and microgreens and also stocks her farm stand with seasonal veggies and delicious wines she makes from native fruit. 

Natasha Adderly | Bahama Island Farms

At the Edgar family's farm stand, you'll find fabulous Bahamian fare, including conch fritters, hearty soups, sauces, and homemade juices. With their farm being only a mile or two away from the Market, they proudly stock their stand with the seasonal veggies they've produced and even create delicious homemade sauces from over-ripe produce. Chock full of sun-ripened tomatoes, onions, peppers, and fresh herbs, you'd be hard-pressed to find anything in a store that can rival this great sauce. When it comes to their juices, you can enjoy ice-cold refreshing and homemade selections ranging from tamarind to ginger beet, sorrel, soursop, moringa, passionfruit, and more!

Herb gardens are an easy weekend project for any novice grower, and there are some essential fruits and vegetables we can also grow at home. A quick visit to Olga and Reggie Munroe's stall, and you'll discover all you need to know. This couple is passionate about cultivating plants from Non-GMO heritage seeds. 

When it comes to dairy and poultry, you're sure to find everything from locally-grown organic eggs to live birds, coops, and even fresh local meat for sale.

Fresh eggs available at the Gladstone Road Farmer's Market

Other interesting stalls you'll want to check out:

  • Mr. Farquharson's fresh hand-cranked sugar cane juice 
  • Ivamae Adderley's delicious souses
  • Kowsher Ital's refreshing native Bush Teas
  • Edible flowers by Sunshine Organic Farms
  • Baked crabs and seafood 
  • Various homemade fruit tarts, pastries, and bread
  • Homemade jams, honeys and butters

 

The Market is a wonderful place for farmers to showcase their passion and their products to their visitors. It also allows them to come together and exchange ideas and recipes, to trade growing secrets and learn from one another. 

Breads, pastries and more at The Gladstone Road Farmer's Market

For us visitors, The Market isn't just a place to purchase freshly-grown, naturally-made foods. It's also a place for us to learn about our local food system and share unique experiences with our children about food sustainability, local culture, and agriculture. This is down-home Bahamian living at its finest, and if you haven't visited yet, you need to make sure The Gladstone Road Farmers Market is on this year's bucket list. Come for an hour, stay for the afternoon. Explore, learn, share and grow with the outstanding farmers here.

The Gladstone Road Farmer's Market is open on Fridays and Saturdays from 8 am to 4 pm, and entrance to the grounds is free. Standard Covid-19 Protocols are in place (masks, social distancing). Be sure to bring those reusable bags - you'll be glad you did!

May
5

Bahamian Bistro

So here's a story that will make any heart happy. In the middle of Covid-19 lockdowns last summer, our agent, Melissa received a phone call from a past client, with a new culinary vision he and his partners were looking to develop.  They needed a truly unique space for a restaurant concept they hoped would turn heads and fill bellies!

Today, thanks to their ingenuity, we're happy to report they have created a little bit of culinary magic just outside of downtown Nassau. Maybe you've heard of it, and perhaps you know the secret already. If you don't, it's time you do. 

Bahamian Bistro - an uber-creative culinary concept that's been creating a buzz around town since they opened at the end of 2020. Here, you'll find the perfect blend of people, food, culture, and hospitality all under one roof. In their own words, Bahamian Bistro is a food archipelago - the country's first "Multi Restaurant" in one great location. Here, you can choose from 8+ restaurants but pay with only one bill. And when it comes to the menu items, food fans are in for a real treat. Offering everything from Bahamian delights to international cuisine, including Haitian fare, Italian, BBQ, Sushi, Chinese, and staples like a good ole' burger. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; you're sure to find something for everyone - whether you're into super-healthy, antioxidant-rich, fresh-pressed juices, or a mouthwatering traditional plate of bacon and eggs, or a signature Bahamian boil. Their cocktail/mocktail menu is long and varied with libations for everyone to enjoy. Order online for pick-up or delivery, or stay and enjoy a meal outdoors! 

Bahamian Bistro

Established in 2020, Bahamian Bistro is the creation of Cutelle Mikula, Jewel McIntosh, and Jamal Stubbs. Together, they are a dynamic team of young Bahamian entrepreneurs with diverse backgrounds in operations, finance, hospitality, information technology, and the culinary industry. During the pandemic, this trio decided to create a genius concept that would address the growing demand for food and beverage delivery to consumers, while also providing small business owners with a way to operate at lower costs. "Initially, it was travel that brought on the idea for us. After visiting a few food halls around the world, we saw the growing trend and thought to bring it back to Nassau. Then Covid happened, and during the lockdown, it provided time for research, and we also saw the concept of virtual halls growing in many countries. It was an excellent idea for small food businesses to save on overhead expenses," says Cutelle. And so, the group designed the country's first communal kitchen, allowing multiple vendors to retail their products using a single sales platform. "We made it our mission to create and nurture an environment where small businesses could grow and expand their profitability while also presenting our customers with quality food options at an affordable price," says the group. 

 

Concept down and vision ready to go, the group knew they needed to find just the perfect spot within their budget. Having recently worked with Melissa on a separate search for office space, Jamal knew she was the right person to call. "When Jamal contacted me and explained the concept of Bahamian Bistro and what they were looking for, I was excited as I also loved dining in these gourmet food emporiums while away," says Melissa. "Looking for a restaurant space during a pandemic was tricky. Having a large outdoor space was a requirement, as indoor dining was not, and is still not permitted. We found a space that worked and fit the budget in a central location and they got to work as soon as the lease was signed! Everything you see there, they did themselves - from building to design and painting - they did it all. They took a huge leap of faith during a challenging time, so it has been wonderful to see their business grow and flourish and become so successful. Cutelle, Jewel, and Jamal have created a new niche of dining, and the group has given small F&B businesses a platform to introduce themselves to Bahamian consumers. I am thrilled for them."

Melissa Farrington and Cutelle Mikula 

Pictured: Melissa Farrington & Cutelle Mikula at Bahamian Bistro

And of the process for the team? Well, they couldn't be more pleased. "Melissa was amazing. She continuously updated us on available sites that might fit our needs. She was always accessible and willing to research any information we might have needed."

So where is this space?

You'll find them on Christie Avenue, between Dowdeswell and Bay Streets!  Vibrant island colors, a chill and welcoming atmosphere, feature in this 'good vibes only' spot! "Our goal was to make every seat in the space instagrammable, or picture-worthy for our guests. A place you feel good in and want to share with friends and family. We again looked to our travel experiences for inspiration - we're always looking for local spots to capture photos when we're away, and we knew we had to do the same with our location," says Cutelle. Bright, cheerful colors, sand-lined floors, fun and funky furniture and even an indoor swing are just some of the highlights.  "Bahamian Bistro's distinctive yet cohesive and dynamic vibe is a true reflection of our partnership. We knew we wanted the space to offer a laid back, colorful and diverse culinary experience. This uniquely tailored atmosphere is a perfect blend of our three varied backgrounds and personalities." 

 

As to how things are going so far, we can report only great things. Noting that the most popular aspects of Bahamian Bistro among its patrons are the quality, variety, and pricing of the food paired with the great atmosphere, the team feels they've nailed their concept. "The reception we've received from our local customer base has been very welcoming from day one, which we're extremely happy and grateful for," says Cutelle. "Opening any new business requires huge risk, especially during a pandemic, but people are looking for new and exciting experiences, and we're going to continue to provide just that!" 

More good news? Moving forward, the group intends to continue to grow. "We'll be adding a few more vendors to the food archipelago. The goal is to have every food cuisine available," they've told us. We can't wait to see what the future holds for Bahamian Bistro and the fantastic team behind them, and we're grateful to have played a part in helping this dream come true! From Melissa and the Morley team, we wish our friends at Bahamian Bistro every continued success.

Ready to check out this great spot? Head to:

Web: bahamianbistro.com

FB: www.facebook.com/BahamianBistro

IG: www.instagram.com/bahamianbistro

March
17

In the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian and with the on-going pandemic, one thing was abundantly clear. There is a dire need to extend financial services to our Out Islands. Answering that call and leading the charge in financial and tech innovation is the Central Bank of The Bahamas. In October 2020, CBOB announced their Sand Dollar's introduction - a blockchain-backed digital token pegged one-to-one to our Bahamian dollar and available to Bahamian individuals and businesses alike. This new currency is regulated and issued by the Central Bank of The Bahamas and allows us to buy and sell our goods and services and send money to one another digitally. 

Read more about this fascinating Bahamian initiative in the International Monetary Fund's Finance & Development publication here:  

https://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2021/03/fighting-pandemic-disruption-with-innovation-dorst.htm

December
1

The holidays are here, as difficult as that may be to believe. For those of us with retail or service businesses, we know without a doubt that this Christmas season will be far different. You may be wondering how you can make the most of this busy shopping period. Our Morley commercial agents, Chris Sands and Kayleigh Dickson, put together some thoughts on how you can best reach your potential clients and customers.

Be Prepared

As we've seen throughout the year, our circumstances are constantly changing. Flexibility has proven to be key. Being prepared to make adjustments to your operations can only help now.  Make sure you have all the necessary ingredients to maximize your sales potential this holiday season. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Safety

Start with your floor plan and work from there. Reconfigure your store space where possible.  Widen the aisles and remove anything that may potentially take up space unnecessarily. Ensure there is enough space around the cashier's counter.  Create marked social distancing points for your clients and customers standing in line. Where possible, aim for contactless payment options.

Signed, Sealed, Delivered

Signage for safety measures throughout your store space is crucial. Let your customers know upfront what they can expect when they shop in-store with you. Ensure that guidelines and procedures are clearly outlined.

Welcome

"You want to make your customers feel as comfortable as possible during their shopping experience," note Chris and Kayleigh. "Encourage your sales staff to be vigilant about your store's safety measures. But also ensure they're creating a welcoming and helpful environment. Customer empathy is key."

The Bahamas Federation of Retailers released this Sunday a comprehensive list of suggested health and safety protocols. You can view these here.

 

Be Flexible

This Sunday brought incredibly welcome news for us all – retail business owners, employees and patrons alike! We can't wait to get back to in-store shopping! As you open your doors to your customers again, take another look at your in-store operations plan. Does it need to be adjusted at all? Run a thorough review of your procedures ahead of the Christmas rush, so that you're ready if things change. Do you have a plan in place for outdoor seating or shade in anticipation of potential long lines? Do you offer curbside service by appointment? Reduce customer frustration by ensuring your operations are able to run as smoothly as possible. "If a customer is leaving their home and coming to your business in a mask, they are likely motivated to buy. Make sure you have a 'free and clear' operation with no hold ups during this purchasing cycle."

Another key consideration? While many of us are chomping at the bit to get back to in-store shopping, there are still some who are not quite comfortable with this yet, and who, despite things opening back up, may still prefer to avoid the crowds. How can they support their local retailers and community? How can they support you?

Take a look at this great incentive offered by John Bull. Now open for in-store shopping, they are continuing to promote their Curbside Service for their clients who are more comfortable with this approach. Their service is inviting, their instructions are clear, and their efforts are undoubtedly appreciated!

Check in with your staff and your customers and adjust where necessary. Knowledge is power, as they say!

Find New Opportunities and Brush Up on the Old

For retailers and service providers, these last two months of the year are often the busiest. Take the extra steps now, if you can, to find new opportunities for growth and ways to reach your customers. Don't wait for them to come to you. Consider new incentives. How can you make purchasing your products easier for your customers? Today's buying habits focus mainly on convenience and instant gratification. The easier and faster you can make a purchase for a potential buyer, the better. Make sure you have the fundamentals down, and stay open to new opportunities:

Be Visible

A website is a great sales tool, but it's not the only one available. There are still tools you can use to reach your potential client base. The easiest and most immediate way to do this is through social media. 

Make sure you have a Facebook page and an Instagram account, at the very least. YouTube and Vimeo are also great options for video sharing. Use these tools to share your products and to let your followers know why they need to have your products. Think about the what, how, why, when and where. Be sure to communicate these points when promoting your goods and services. Photographs and video are key.

Many business owners are also utilizing live video as a way to reach their client base. One such company is Biggity Candles. Over the last several weeks, they've used the lockdown weekends productively. Through live video sessions, they've shared information about new holiday products and promotions.

When you want to really make the most of these tools, use them together. Use your social media to drive your traffic to your website. Add pricing to your products on your site, if you can. This way, you have the potential to generate sales seven days a week, 24 hours a day. CBS Bahamas has done an incredible job with maintaining an online presence throughout this pandemic. Their social media is strong, and they were able to maximize their sales potential by incorporating an online sales platform with their website. In a recent social media post, they listed the various ways their shoppers can make purchases:

"We agree. #Curbside is no fun. But, we're making retail easy thanks to the #Bahamas' largest online catalog. With guaranteed 2hr (or less) in-store pickup, $5 island-wide delivery, and 24/7 live agent chat; COVID-19 shopping has never been easier. Check us out today; our online store is #alwaysopen."

Reach Out

Another way to reach your customers? Email. Create attractive email flyers to send out to your clients and customers. Let them know ahead of time about new products and promotions you have slated for the holidays, as well as any changes to your operations. Keeping your customers informed is a must, and with so many different programs available, there's no reason you can't incorporate this into your marketing. Check out MailChimp, iContact or Constant Contact for a few options. They each offer pre-designed templates, taking the hard work out of the equation. 

Consider using WhatsApp as a way to share information about your products as well. Check in with your regular clients and ask them if they'd like to be added to your messaging group. This is an easy, fast and effective way to share information with them.  Whether it's a change in your store hours, or even a special holiday menu you're wanting to share!

Another option? Virtual Shopping appointments. Paper Clutch Giftsdoes a great job with this. They offer (and advertise) their virtual shopping appointments on social media. Incorporating tools like these lets people 'browse' your store without leaving their homes. They'll have the help of a personal shopper who can show them the products and offer great advice. It's a special touch that will leave a lasting impression. John Bull offers the service of a Personal Shopper and invites their customers to Whatsapp them for access!

Be Helpful

It's not enough to speak to your customers. You need to be open to speaking with them. Be sure you respond to all online inquiries as quickly as possible. This will go a long way in building trust with your clients. Messaging on Facebook. DM on Instagram. Emails. Messaging apps through your website. WhatsApp. Find as many ways as possible to stay in touch.

Get There

Go the extra mile, if you can. Meet your customers where they are instead of waiting for them to come to you, and consider delivery. While this may not be an option for all retailers, for most it is. If you can't offer your own in-house delivery, find someone who can. A simple online search will give you a host of options to consider reaching out to.

Kraven offers everything from casual to fine dining, alcohol, grocery, pharmacy, and retail deliveries. Bahama Eats does as well. Mutru is another option. They partner with major local retailers to deliver goods to their consumers. Whatsmore, with support like this, you're not just adding another service to offer to your clients. You're gaining exposure and marketing support as a vendor of these programs. Lowe's Pharmacy recently added this service for their client base. Any customer can have their products delivered to their door using either the Kraven or Bahama Eats apps!

Go Get'em

Put your business in front of your 'target market' at a low cost. Target customers through digital marketing, social media, online advertising, and Google SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Be sure to consider all available online options to maximize your reach!

A Helping Hand

These days, we could all use a hand. As a business owner, you know. Every bit helps. While you're working on making the most of potential profits for your own business this holiday season, don't forget to support those around you. Find ways to share the love – partner, collaborate, refer, encourage and support small businesses wherever you can. A little time, care and consideration goes a long way. It's the holidays, after all. A time for giving.

If you're a retailer and you're looking for online local resources and communities that you can follow and join, here are some great options to get you started:

The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce

The Bahamas Federation of Retailers

Buy Bahamian

December
1

It's true when they say they're more than a group of businesses working together. They're family. A family that has grown together, that encourages one another and supports each other. That's the Tin Ferlcommunity. With their Pop-Up Park at the Dundas Center for Performing Arts grounds on Mackey Street, this family of like-minded small business owners has banded together to provide us with a creative twist to traditional dining! Featuring approximately 15 different food and beverage vendors on any given day, lunch becomes a true experience of culinary genius here! With everything from juicy burgers to seafood tacos, pasta dishes, curries, jerk chicken, stuffed buns, guava duff and fresh-made teas, juices and coffees, there's no limit to the fun you can have out here at the park! With the recent update to our COVID-19 Regulations, now we can stay awhile and dine outdoors in the park as well! 

Officially opening the gates to the Pop Up Park at the Dundas Center for Performing Arts in March of this year, Tin Ferl was founded in June 2019.  Three friends –  Kendrick Delaney, founder of The New Duff, Brandon Kemp, founder of the Nassau Night Market, and  Alicia "Puppy" Robinson Treco, founder of Pup Star Entertainment – came together to discuss some of the issues facing the pop-up community. They decided to start a collaborative that would "advocate for the pop-up community, be a centre for information and networking, and provide the community with opportunities to develop their businesses and sell their products," according to a recent online article by BahamasLocal. "We want this to be the home for Pop-Up vendors, where they can work full-time at building their businesses because they have an affordable, ideal location from which to build a strong following. We are very grateful to our sponsors, Aliv and Sign Island, for their support in helping make the Pop-Up Park a reality."

The result of their creation? An organization that provides training and education, business and marketing assistance to their vendors. Starting with a free consultation, Tin Ferl offers their vendors far more than just a place to set up shop. They are committed to helping their members grow their business models – offering everything from booth support (concessions including ice and gas deliveries, electricity to their booths, etc) to photography, advertising and marketing, social media management, and overall brand development.

Of their business concept, Brandon says "the Tin Ferl community is actually composed of 80 different participants, which expands beyond food and beverage, into arts, crafts and other Bahamian-made goods. Our Pop Up Park includes 30 vendors overall. Our members are home-based business owners. Our model works because we all work together to support each other and we've created a community. We operate under the motto 'Together we are stronger. United we'll succeed'. Our name Tin Ferl – (Bahamian for Tin Foil) – is what we are all about. A single piece of foil is easy to tear. But when you layer foil, stacking one piece on top of another on top of another, it becomes very strong. Tin Ferl is dedicated to uniting and supporting small businesses and to providing the pop-up community with affordable, stable, and rewarding locations to sell their products."

The Tin Ferl group welcomes vendors looking for a stable base in which to grow. They've designed an easy and straightforward registration process, which outlines vendor requirements, their weekly schedule, their procedures and guidelines, COVID-19 safety measures and available supporting services. They also offer several packages for those vendors interested in increasing their online presence and exposure in a professional, polished and affordable way. 

As for us patrons, we can only tell you wonderful things await as you enter those Dundas gates. We're not sure whether it's the delicious aromas that draw the crowds (all with social distancing measures, mind you!), the tempting photos, the recommendations of others, or previous experiences that keeps the park busy, but if you haven't checked out the Tin Ferl Pop-Up Park and the many delectable delights, you're definitely missing out!

Here are a few of the vendors you can expect to find there:

Black Pearl Bubble Tea, The New Duff, Tipsea, Junior's Jerk, Cabana Club, Natural Scrubs, Fancy Jonsa, Vell Monkey Foot, FoodPlay Cafe, Gim Sum, TK Grill Yo, Simply Good Hotdogs, Sky Juice King, Happy Hour Java, Tropical Smoothies, TZ's Bay View, Island Pops, Chops Conch Fritters, Island Sushi, Saige, First Choice Grill, Natalie's Caribbean Cuisine, Blue Flamingo Cafe and Bell's Takeaway, among others. 

As of this past weekend, the Pop Up Park is open on Saturdays as well as Monday – Friday!

Coming Soon:

As the holidays draw closer, we're told we can also expect to see some (socially-distanced and COVID friendly) Junkanoo entertainment to add a bit of festive cheer!

If you know, stay in touch. If you didn't know before, now you do. Follow the Tin Ferl group on Facebook and Instagram for the latest updates and happenings! 

December
1

We've heard it before, but it warrants saying again - it's been a year. Are we right? If ever there was a time when life seemed turned upside down, turned around, and something closer to the lyrics of a Bahamian song, it would be 2020. And yet, with so many unknowns, so many changes, there are some silver linings we can take with us. One of these is the spirit of Bahamian entrepreneurship and innovation.With COVID-19 restrictions in place, local businesses were hit hard. Both the health and economic impacts have been felt not just here, but around the world. Traditional business practices changed, with many companies finding new ways to adapt to meet the needs of their customers.

New opportunities were created as well. Almost overnight, Bahamian entrepreneurs stepped up to the plate. They created avenues to support local businesses. The traditional delivery concept morphed. Companies answered the call for services like grocery delivery, or wines and spirits. Retail items, pharmaceutical supplies, household goods - you name it!

An extra bonus for the business owners using these services? Exposure via a third-party marketing initiative. The delivery companies focus on promoting their services, of course. But they also promote and advertise the vendors that they work with - it's a win-win all around!

Our retailers, service providers and restaurants are now open. Yet, we have a feeling the demand for delivery is here to stay. Some of us are happy to get out and visit our favorite shops on our own. But there are also some who feel more comfortable avoiding the crowds and prefer to stay at home.

Here are some companies leading the charge for delivery services across the island:

Kraven

With Kraven, ordering your take-out, beverages, groceries, pharmacy items, merchandise and more, is a breeze. Download the app on your phone and sign up for an account. For customers, there's no charge to sign-up, and you'll know your costs up front when it comes to delivery. The service provided by Kraven is efficient, professional and easy. The company is responsive and a pleasure to use!

Bahama Eats

Bahama Eats caters to restaurants, alcohol retailers, grocery stores and pharmacies, as well. You can download their app and get started today! Their vendor testimonials are the proof in the pudding that the concept works. Ms. Raquel Potier, the owner of Finger Lickin' had great feedback to offer. "Ever since partnering with Bahama Eats to take on our deliveries, we've seen an uptick in sales and also noticed new customers. I love their service!"

Mutru

Mutru is revolutionizing how online and in store customers get their goods. "We partner with freight forwarders and major retailers to bring your purchases to you at home, at work, or anywhere you need it. We also provide a new delivery solution to power same day delivery for retailers and businesses. Whether you want to integrate Mutru into your eCommerce site or simply book a local delivery today, we've got you covered. Mutru gives customers more - a lot more – Choice and Convenience," they say. Partnering with retailers including CBS Bahamas, WHIM Automotive, Missari International, Sugar Mama's and more, the company proudly provides services to large enterprises and small businesses alike. With Mutru's EcoPack Fulfillment service, retailers can meet the needs and demands of their local clients. Mutru will receive, package and deliver your goods directly to your clients for a flat rate of $5.00!

They also offer direct shipping from The Bahamas to the United States! Great news for Bahamian businesses and entrepreneurs trying to expand their reach. Locally-made goods can now be offered to an American market in an easier way!

Their latest achievement? A Messenger Service. Now you can have your documents and small packages delivered across the island. Payment options are either a pay-as-you-go or monthly subscription rate.

Mutru's latest results show that their retailers have:

- saved $30,000 and 37 hours

- had 3,000 packages delivered

- served 872 unique customers

As the holiday shopping season ramps up, there is a strong push for supporting local businesses. The Bahamas Federation of Retailers this week launched a ShopLocal Bahamas campaign. They stress the value and reach of local purchasing for our Bahamian economy and workforce. We agree, and we know we can do this. Through innovation and by working together. Utilizing supporting services, our retailers can maximize efforts to meet their customers' demands.

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