Podcast: How We Built a Successful Beach Club Business in Belize

This week, we’re talking to IL Belize Correspondent, Shane Kenny, and his wife, Heather, about their decision to up sticks from their home in Atlanta and move to the Caribbean nation of Belize.

With two sons at high school, and established careers in the States, there were plenty of reasons why Shane and Heather shouldn’t have taken the plunge, but fortune favors the brave, and it wasn’t long before they turned their dream of owning a beachside hospitality business became a reality.

Adventurous? For sure. Hard work? Definitely. And that’s before they got hit with a pandemic lockdown in their first year of trading….

Shane and Heather were definitely not the first couple who looked around themselves one day and thought, “Let’s give it all up and go run a bar in the Caribbean.” But there’s a big difference between dreaming it and doing it. Now, after lots of learning-on-the-job and hard work, they’ve made their Belize dream come true.

It didn’t happen right away. In fact, their search for the perfect opportunity started in an entirely different Caribbean nation—the Dominican Republic. But in the end, it was the practical details of Belize—no currency fluctuations, a more recognizable legal structure, and above all, the fact that the official language is English—that won out. Combing the coastline in search of the ideal spot, it was almost entirely by luck that they hit upon an abandoned beach club with an almost empty pool…and realized that they’d hit pay dirt.

“That’s kind of the story of how we ended up here and how we ended up with what’s now called Placencia Beach Club,” explains Shane. “And so what we do is, we are a bar and a restaurant, but we’re on the beach, and we have a pool as well, so we call it a beach club because people come not just to eat or drink, but they come kind of spend the day and relax. And so they’ll hang out in the pool or on the beach or in the water.”

Now, with the business ticking along, and all the hassles of relocation behind them, there’s time to reflect: “Life is simpler,” says Heather. “Not every aspect of life is easier, but it’s so much simpler and a lot less stressful from outside influences.”

Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Shane and Heather Kenny in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World.

Read Heather’s full article in the August issue of the International Living Magazine: We Turned an Abandoned Pool into a Booming Beach Club

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