US News Article Causes Big Waves in Little Belize

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As people's retirement dreams have changed the tiny nation of Belize is getting unexpected, but very welcomed, attention. US News and World Report, AARP, "The Boston Herald" as well as published an article on the tiny nation of Belize last week, and the response has been overwhelming.

“If you can redefine what you thought your retirement would look like, and you can make a few small changes”, she says, “you too can 'Live the Dream' just like me!”.

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How does a news article about retirement cause a Bikini website server to crash? Ask Lara Lennon, owner of Lemon Crush Belize, A recent US News and World Report article entitled “How to Retire in Comfortably for Under $1500 A Month” recommends Belize for comfortable, affordable retirement and mentions Lennon as an example of how retirement in paradise can spawn business opportunities.

When posted the article on its home page, response was incredible. The Lemon Crush Belize website received over 1,000,000 hits within 3 days, and Lennon's other venture, Romantic Travel Association of Belize, a travel site geared toward destination weddings and honeymoons, realized a 1693% increase in visitors. Real estate and tourism sites throughout Belize reported increases of up to 50% as well.

Why did the article generate so much interest? Lennon thinks she knows the answer. “Belize is being recognized as an undiscovered and romantic place where people can come visit, experience what makes Belize so 'unBelizeable' and perhaps redefine their future”, she said. This is good news to those whose plans have been derailed by the economy or other unexpected life events. Lennon says, “The recession is forcing people to change their plans. Belize offers increased quality of life and great vacations to people with decreased quantity of funds”. AARP Magazine shares her opinion, identifying Belize as one of their 2010 best places to retire abroad.

Lennon's life plans were derailed when her husband was killed in a 2004 plane crash. She moved to Belie in 2006 where the beauty of Ambergris Caye, Belize with its relaxed island lifestyle inspired Lennon to launch a new business. “Here you can literally live in a swimsuit”, she says. “But, for parties and special occasions, I wanted something dressier – a formal bikini”. Having searched unsuccessfully for a swimsuit formal enough for the many destination weddings that occur in Belize, she realized she'd identified a niche market – special occasion and resort wear swimwear. Lemon Crush Belize swimsuits are now sold internationally.

In a recent Islands Magazine article interview, Lennon celebrated the pleasures of life in Belize. “I pay $65 a year in property taxes versus $7500 in Philadelphia”, she said in the article. “If you can redefine what you thought your retirement would look like, and you can make a few small changes”, she says, “you too can 'Live the Dream' just like me!”.

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