Shopping in the BVI
The hidden treasures
"Don't be misled mister"
appearances as great finds are made
inside some shops with less than the polished
exteriors of tourist shops elsewhere. The
boutique on Jost Van Dyke (pictured here as a bit of
history from 1998) is owned by Lorrin Callwood, a
the BVI is not known as a shopper's haven like St.
Thomas, there are varied and distinctive
shops due to a clientele from all walks of life
with surprisingly affluent local and tourist
customers (for example, yacht charterers are
generally more affluent than cruise ship passengers) who
appreciate the talents of BVI shopkeepers
in supplying a range of tasteful and
The local Road Town shop, Sunny
Caribbee, sells spices which are used by the BVI's
finest restaurants, including the prestigious
Sugar Mill Restaurant, which has the choice
of the world's suppliers for this critical
item to culinary success.
The BVI is a great location to find interesting
art from all over the Caribbean. Perhaps being
in paradise, or simply the unquenchable love of
life, has inspired these artists.
Island motifs, palettes, and
iconographic influences from the myriad of
cultures that the Caribbean, in its rich history
as an international crossroads, beget themselves
and intertwine in contemporary
personalities, enriched by travel and interaction,
before finally being realized in these products (or their
selection), whether recipes, watercolors, or
handcrafted jewelry (border from
Collections like Freddie's
Bay Plantation Art Gallery reflect this abundance of
source material, the setting itself in sugar mill
ruins attests to the arrival of that magic hand,
a state of grace sought in the art as an
end in itself.
This is a particular area where the appeal of the
senses to exotic cultures result in purchases
that enliven the travelers humdrum existence.
There is no better momento of our travels
than a t-shirt print or decorative household item, for
Yet the proprietor Vivian
Jenik Helm of Zenaida's
at Soper's Hole searches Africa, South America
and India for textile motifs for batiks,
weaves, handpainted fabrics, and other distinctive
goods such as scarves, sarongs and ethnic
When Anesta Frett travels
to her native Trinidad looking
especially for her favorite handpainted items,
it is her fashion sense, especially in exquisite women's
apparel, the blending of island romance with good
taste that attracts the eye. See Anesta here in
show at Foxy's.
It is these personalities,
their endeavors, and the resulting hidden
treasures, like the islands themselves,
that make browsing BVI shops such an adventure.
To Tour of Shops
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