Tag Archive | "bed and breakfast"

Hacienda for Sale – One More B&B or Agricutural Opportunity

See an Ecuador hacienda for sale below….bed and breakfast and agricultural opportunities make increasing sense.


A diversification with a view.

An excerpt from a recent US TODAY article entitled “Real federal deficit dwarfs official tally” by Dennis Cauchon says:   The typical American household would have paid nearly all of its income in taxes last year to balance the budget if the government used standard accounting rules to compute the deficit, a USA TODAY analysis finds.

Congress exempts itself from including the cost of promised retirement benefits.

Under those accounting practices, the government ran red ink last year equal to $42,054 per household — nearly four times the official number reported under unique rules set by Congress.

A U.S. household’s median income is $49,445, the Census reports.

The big difference between the official deficit and standard accounting: Congress exempts itself from including the cost of promised retirement benefits. Yet companies, states and local governments must include retirement commitments in financial statements, as required by federal law and private boards that set accounting rules.

The deficit was $5 trillion last year under those rules. The official number was $1.3 trillion. Liabilities for Social Security, Medicare and other retirement programs rose by $3.7 trillion in 2011, according to government actuaries, but the amount was not registered on the government’s books.

This paints a frightening picture especially when one considers the fiscal position of the other major economies as shown in this Economist budget balance review.MIST equity markets

Another way to put this is that we voters have allowed our governments to build up debts so huge that unless there is some incredible wave of new productivity… it cannot possibly be repaid.

The only alternative is for all major currencies to lose purchasing power which will hurt those on fixed incomes the most.

High Risk World

Most investments are now at risk because most savings and capital come in the form of a promise. Stocks are a promise of shared earnings and growth in business. Bonds are a promise of money used and returned with interest. Bank and savings accounts are a promise of money kept and cared for to be returned at the owners’ desire.

Currencies are promises of products and services delivered later from products and services given now.

We are in times when few promises… especially those made in terms of paper currency can be kept.

Traditionally Swiss francs and precious metals, especially gold and silver have been the favored stores of wealth.  These investments should usually play a part in portfolios as insurance. 5% to 10% of a portfolio in metals and hard currencies is a general rule of thumb.

Storing Wealth during High Risk

Today investors and businesses need a new mindset for storing wealth…a thought pattern that leads in new ways to  make a relentless search for diversification, necessity and value.

One diversified way to store wealth is in necessities.   No matter the state of the economy… basic necessities remain… food, clothing and shelter.

Clothing perhaps can wait… but food and shelter cannot.

This  Ecuador hacienda for sale offers a bed & breakfast and agricultural 0pportunity.


Many readers interested in coming to Ecuador are looking for ways to earn income there.  One enjoyable, satisfying way is with a small hotel or B&B.

The tradition of extending hospitality to traveling strangers goes back to the earliest recorded history for almost all religions and cultures worldwide.  In the early eras of the United States they were called stagecoach inns and provided stabling for horses and lodging for travelers.

During the Great Depression boarders could stay in Tourist Homes or Guest Houses for about $2 a night including breakfast.  Travel to Europe boomed and a strong dollar helped Americans discover England’s and Ireland’s B&Bs.

In the 1980s, the seeds for a B&B boom were planted but the biggest  growth in B&Bs came due to the internet which levels the playing field.  A bed and breakfast could afford to compete with area hotels, by listing in directories like BedandBreakfast.com, establishing a first-rate website, and offering secure online booking options.

We are searching across Ecuador for properties that have B&B potential.

Here is an example.

About 65 miles north of Quito,  Ecuador and a 20-minute drive from Otavalo, is the Hacienda San Pedro.

Hacienda San Pedro is a working farm, that produces crops and dairy products, while offering lodging to a select handful of guests at the hacienda’s main villa.

The hacienda has approximately 160 acres with fields, meadows and primary woodlands. Only a portion of the land is under cultivation.

The land is very scenic with views of…


Mt. Cotacachi and Mt. Imbabura.

The terrain is ideal for hiking and horseback riding. There is a wide variety of flora… bromeliads, orchids and native medicinal plants (such as “ñachag”).  This most likely is the flower in the Order Asterales, the Family Asteraceae and Genus Bidens. This is a popular plant used in the limpia (cleansing) shamanic ceremonies.

Ceremonial cleansing plays a vital role in indigenous societies where ‘folk illnesses’ such as susto (fright) are common. Indigenous Andeans commonly use cleansing plants to treat susto, and related ‘folk illnesses’.

The owner of the Manor recently sent this note:  Dear Mr. Scott,  Thank you for your lines, I am afraid that my English – as your Spanish – is not sufficient, but I will try it myself.

For some time we received your newsletter which is giving every day interesting news, innovative business ideas and information about real estate in Ecuador.

We almost are neighbors as we live at a hacienda in front of Mount Cotacachi.   We started our business in the year 2000, offering in our country house accommodation and restaurant services to tourists in a personal and familiar ambience.  We have received travelers from all over the world during 11 years, and having reached the age of retirement, we are looking for someone who wants to rent or buy our hacienda.

It would be great pleasure to welcoming you and your guests at San Pedro.   Best regards,  Regula Marti de Cajas

The owner of Hacienda San Pedro, Alfredo and his wife, Regula.

Merri and I were not available to visit but Super Spanish teacher, Glenn Sterling, was staying at Inn Land of the Sun so we asked if he could stop in for a stay.

Glenn visited and sent this story.

A visit to Hacienda San Pedro

Twenty minutes above Otavalo, Ecuador is a classy, relaxing and inviting oasis (locally called a Hacienda).

Alfredo brought out some homemade goat’s milk cheese, carefully carving off small sections.  It was delicious and a warm welcome to what already felt like home.  Next he brought out some homemade liquer – a ten year project – crafted from pineapple and apricot – it too was delicious although nothing like its parent fruit.  


Fearing bad manners – we gratefully accepted in Spanish – occasionally drifting into German, then English.

The cozy fire Alfredo had stoked in the large metal oven warmed our visit.  “What did you think of Hacienda San Pedro?”  he asked us.

I replied….”Tranquil, peaceful, homey,” so homey, in fact we didn’t want to leave our 10,000′ altitude perch on top of the perpetual springtime hills (really).  Thank you,  Alfredo and Regula – it was beyond pleasant.  The view was to die for.  The Hacienda featured 6 guest rooms, some with fabulous views of the Andes, the valleys and surrounding volcanoes and had 160 majestic acres with live in workers.

Photo Gallery


Part of the living room.


The other half of the living room.


A guest bedroom waiting to rejuvenate the weary.


Paths lead to additional smaller guest rooms with panoramic views.


Now that Glenn has had a chance to visit and confirm that this is a truly beautiful place, I am taking this one step further.

I am told that the asking price is $950,000 which includes the land, all buildings and the entire infrastructure of the guest house.  I cannot see how a profitable B&B can be developed at that price so I have asked Ateam member Jeff Neal to visit the property.

Jeff is a licensed real estate broker from the US so will have a better feel for the potential and can help readers who may want to visit the property.

Ecuador Living Club members can obtain more information from Jeff  at their password protected site here.

Learn how to obtain a password here.


Real federal deficit dwarfs official tally


B&B Business Opportunity

Here is a business opportunity in Crucita, Ecuador. 

This Ecuador property is ideal for a  hotel or bed & breakfast but first let’s look at why B&Bs and BB&Bs (I am coining a phrase here) anywhere offer extra special opportunity now.


View from potential B&B.

Changes in the global economy increase the value in B&B opportunity.

A recent New york Times article “Family Net Worth Drops to Level of Early ’90s, Fed Says’ by Binyamin Applebaumoutlines the root of the problem when it says:   The recent economic crisis left the median American family in 2010 with no more wealth than in the early 1990s, erasing almost two decades of accumulated prosperity, the Federal Reserve said Monday.

A hypothetical family richer than half the nation’s families and poorer than the other half had a net worth of $77,300 in 2010, compared with $126,400 in 2007, the Fed said. The crash of housing prices directly accounted for three-quarters of the loss.

Families’ income also continued to decline, a trend that predated the crisis but accelerated over the same period. Median family income fell to $45,800 in 2010 from $49,600 in 2007. All figures were adjusted for inflation.

The Fed found that middle-class families had sustained the largest percentage losses in both wealth and income during the crisis, limiting their ability and willingness to spend.

“It fills in details to a picture that we already knew was quite ugly, and these details very much underscore that,” said Jared Bernstein, an economist at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities who served as an adviser to Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. “It makes clear how devastating this has been for the middle class.”

The survey also found a shift in the reasons that families set aside money, underscoring the lack of confidence that is weighing on the economy. More families said they were saving money as a precautionary measure, to make sure they had enough liquidity to meet short-term needs. Fewer said they were saving for retirement, or for education, or for a down payment on a home.

The global expansion that has boosted the well being of so many for so many years was driven by expanding emerging markets which were driven by overextended consumer spending in the Western world… led by the USA.

The high leverage involved in this spending has come home to roost and left America and most of Western Europe and Japan in an over borrowed, stagflationary (rising prices and slowing economy) state.

In other words, people are becoming much poorer and are trading down.  The concept that “The consumer is king” is losing validity.

Simultaneously the consumer is also looking for something else they can trust.   Look at what has happened to all the institutions we have been taught to rely on, the government, our police, religious centers, industry, educational institutions, science, even our athletic leaders. All have been involved in scandals, defrocked and shown as immoral, using deceit, lies and fraud.

Yet man is a social animal that needs to believe and belong.  Mankind needs to feel it knows truth and consequently is looking for it in secrets. Maybe we believe that truth is being kept from us?

Assuming this theory has some credence, we can ask what kinds of trends will develop in people’s search for truth.  This creates a new niche for B&Bs… “The Thematic B&B”… a B&B built around a belief.

There is a growing trend for the purchase of immaterial goods, such as sports, entertainment, health, communication and spirituality.  Togetherness is a key motivator for emotional fulfillment. Many consumers have learned that just acquiring stuff is not enough.  More and more things don’t satisfy much or for long. At some point our material excesses turn into junk, worthless burdens that cost us to store, clean and insure.  Successful companies in the future will learn to attach symbols of love and togetherness to their products and services.

There will be a growing business in ties that bond people together.

Think about how this can apply to a B&B.   People come to stay because they will meet like minded souls who are also interested in whatever is the theme.

This is a strong trend and it will have an impact on many businesses. Keep your eyes open to man’s search for the truth because in spotting how this trend works can change the utility of many properties.

We have used this idea to change the utility of our farm from subsistence farming to writing by creating a center for our Writers Camps.

mountain cafe

View from our mountain “cafe” at a writing camp.

Learn more about writing camps here.

Black Star Farms is another example.

Black Star Farms images

Blackstar Farms in Leelanau County, Michigan is another example as they have combined an agricultural theme with a blend of small-scale farming and business practices.

Blackstar is small as farms go at 120 acres but has blended a winery, a stable, a cheese factory, and bed and breakfast into its theme.

They use several tactics similar to what Merri and I have used at our 250 acre farm in the Blue Ridge.

First, they cut out the middle man and sell directly to the user.

Second, they enhance their margins by adding value to their products. For instance, Blackstar helps his neighbors buying pears grown in a bottle for about ten dollars apiece as a first step to producing Blackstar’s high-end brandy.

They use their grapes to produce high end wine instead of selling the grapes.

They rent their old farmhouses at bed and breakfast rates instead of getting low income rents.

Third, they outsource to enhance their their wine-cheese connection. They rent space at the farm to a cheese company.   The cheese helps attract consumers to Blackstar and makes it easier for consumers to get great cheese.


Combine this social thematic need to trading down (a poorer market) and you will see an evolving need for Boarding Bed & Breakfasts.

I have been thinking about this in Ecuador as real estate prices rise and as increasing numbers of North Americans look for a less expensive lifestyle.  They still want to be surrounded by like minded souls but cannot afford a house or condo.

Now let’s look in more detail at an Ecuadorian coastal property that could be an ideal B&B.

This building is ideal for a hotel, bed & breakfast or a home with added rental income.


The lot over 14,000 square feet (1,400m2).  This property has a great sea view.


The building consists of 6,000 square feet (600m2) of construction.


There are 12 beds and baths and an extra building in back is large with a full bath.

There are three floors, facing the beach front.


There is a garage for 2 cars, a large kitchen and an extra full suite with bath, for employees, plus two large terraces.

The asking price is $400,000 but is negotiable.

Ecuador Living Club members can get full seller details at their password protected site here.

Learn how to be an Ecuador Living Club member here.


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Family Net Worth Drops to Level of Early ’90s, Fed Says