Rosalind Baitel, 54, is bi-coastal. And by that I don’t mean she subjects herself to long flights to shuttle back and forth between expensive, crowded cities like New York and L.A.
“We go to the beach most every weekend…it’s so close that even if we can’t stay the entire weekend, we can go for the day.” An hour and 40 minutes gets her from Panama City on the Pacific shore to the brilliant blue waters of the Caribbean.
What she loves most about Panama City is that it’s a world capital…with amenities and entertainment to rival many of the world’s great cities.
“Our residence is in the El Cangrejo district, which has a neighborhood feel despite being downtown,” says Rosalind. “We have a park across the street, and within walking distance is our dry cleaner, fruit market, bakery, pharmacy, and more.”
The supermarkets are stocked with bargain-priced local produce and familiar imports…everything from U.S.-brand peanut butters to organic canned goods. Whatever you like to eat or drink…it’s available here.
And living in Panama is inexpensive. At Greek restaurant Athens, filling platters and salads start at around $6 and the same goes for savory curries at Sabor de la India. Movie theater tickets for $5, metro train rides for 70 cents, golf fees at 25% to 50% less than you’d pay in the U.S…entertainment doesn’t cost much here.
Rosalind has a business in Panama City that helps fund her lifestyle—a consignment store called Promises. “It’s a business model that anyone can implement anywhere, with or without a premises,” she says.
“Because it is a used-clothing store, I tend to meet very fun people.”
With three reliable staff members (whom she employs for just $600 a month…the average salary in Panama), Rosalind has a flexible schedule and time to enjoy everything the city has to offer…and, of course, the beach.
“Within 10 minutes of arriving at the beach, I’m in my kayak,” she says.
“If I’m in a lazy mood, that’s where I have my morning cup of coffee. There are no big waves, no storms…we’re protected by the nearby islands in the bay.”
On any given day you’ll find sailboats dotting the waters, and a diverse, fun group of people to socialize with. “I get to meet people from everywhere when I’m at the beach,” says Rosalind.
“Over the years I have seen many of these boaters fall in love with the place and even buy property. We have white sand because of the coral reef. And the water…what can I say? It’s very blue.”
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