The US Virgin Islands will be celebrated their 100th anniversary as a US Territory. In 1917, the three large islands (St. Croix, St. Thomas and St. John, in order of size) were purchased for 25 Million US dollars (in gold) from Denmark. With the exception of being able to vote for president or US Congress, citizens have the same rights as citizens of the 50 US states.
Absolutely fabulous! Highs in the low 90's and lows in the low 70's with only about 20 days of "bad" weather a year. What do we consider bad weather? "Bad weather " is when the sun is not shinning and it may even be raining. Humidity is in the 75% range, wonderful for the skin!
The US Virgin Islands are a little known tax haven for all. We have no state, county, or city taxes, no sales tax and extremely low property taxes ( $377 per $100,000 of value for homes and condominiums). Our only taxes are paid on IRS Forms, to the local government, know as "mirror image" taxation. Yes, the $8000 first time home buyers credit is available, for example.
On St. Croix, we live the lifestyle of the rich and famous, without the bother of being either. We're a cosmopolitan small town with the benefits of small town life, but not the isolation. After you have been on island for several days, people on the street begin greeting you. We live an active, outdoors lifestyle, participating in sports and events - tennis, golf, sailing, croquet, baseball, baseball, cricket, running, triathalons. Whatever your interests, we have a group - gardening (particularly orchids and bonsai), watercolors, writers workshops, quilting, mentoring and tutoring, church groups, amateur theatricals. Out animal welfare center is a volunteer effort, as is our historical society and botanical garden.
Cost of Living
About the same as a moderately sized US city. Food costs compare to major cities, offset by no home heating costs. Only one set of clothing is needed - summer and beach clothes - winter clothing is stored for visits to the mainland.
What we don't have... malls, traffic jams, commutes, lots of people. The population of St. Croix is around 50,000, and has been for the past 20 years. A crowded beach means there are 10 or 20 other people there. Our large stores consist of 2 Kmarts and a Home Depot opening at the end of the year; we do a lot of shopping on the Internet and at our local boutiques. Musical events are a string quartet, not a symphony. At sporting events, you know most of the competitors and have probably been recruited in a support capacity. Our speed limit for most of the island is 35 mph.