Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Municipal and General Elections in Belize to Be Held On The Same Day in 2012

It is now official from the office of the Prime Minister that both Municipal Elections and General Elections will both be held on the same day in the nation of Belize. The date for both elections has been scheduled for March, 7th, 2012, a day when all concerned and devoted Belizeans will go to the polls to elect the government that they see fit to run the nation of Belize.
Today the Prime Minister of Belize made the official announcement via this video released by the Government of Belize Press Office who also posted the video on YouTube.

In the past people have voted "Blue" or "Red" because their families have been branded but we ask that you step out of the mold and use your own sense of judgement and make an informed decision of your own. Make the decision to select who you would like to see as the ruling government of the beautiful nation of Belize.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Belize is a Bird Watchers and Birding Paradise

Great Heron
Photo by: Will Moreno

Belize is a Bird Watchers and Birding Paradise in Central America and the Caribbean.
Here is a list of some Birding Hot Spots in Belize listed by the Belize Audubon Society.

In speaking to Dirk Francisco of the Belize Audobon Society we found some very interesting facts.
Fact #1 - Once very popular as a household pet in Belize. The Yellow-Headed Amazon Parrot (Amazona Oratrix) is now a critically endangered specie.

Fact #2 - Some new species of birds have found thier way to Belize and two of those confirmed are the Red Head Duck and the Green Wing Teal.

If you would like more information of Birding or Bird Watching in Belize feel free to contact the Belize Audobon Society.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Ceviche a seafood delight in Belize

Ceviche a seafood delight in Belize
January 20th, 2012
By: Will Moreno

Ceviche, as with many other recipes, has so many variations. In Belize, Ceviche is a seafood delight made normally from conch, shrimp, lobster, fish, sal picon (grilled skirt steak) and, yes, chicken.
The origin of ceviche is widely disputed, however, all I can say is, thank you, to whomever started this savory dish. Ceviche is made by mixing fresh seafood with lime juice, salt and pepper to taste with additions of onions, cilantro and sometimes carrots or even fresh mangoes.
Although I have tried the chicken ceviche and not yet tasted the sal picon ceviche, I must admit my favorites still remain the seafood ceviche made with either conch, shrimp, lobster or fish.
There are only a few places I would certainly recommend highly since I have tasted their ceviche while I have been in Belize. If you are on the island of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye I would definitely recommend you try ceviche from El Divino Restaurant at Banana Beach or KayDan's Ceviche Stall on Tarpon Street, just a short walk from the Airport. In Belize City you should try the ceviche from Ceviche Hut on Vasquez Avenue.
The popular treat of Ceviche is normally shared with friends and family over beers or mixed drinks, however, the delightful taste can certainly be appreciated with various tropical fruit juices.

When you visit Belize make sure to grab a seat and make an order for your ceviche, while waiting for your order make sure to grab an ice cold Belikin Beer and simply enjoy.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Belize unveils its Maya 2012 Celendar

On Wednesday, January, 11th the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) alongside the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) launched the Maya 2012 Calender of Events. The event was held at the Bliss Center for Performing Arts in Belize City.
The opening entertainment definitely set the mood for the event. The harmonious melodies of Maya music filled the air from an amazing flutist, Pablo Collado who certainly kept a captive audience not only with his melodies, but also with his talented handiwork on the flute.
The Otaxa Deer Dancers certainly entertained the attendees with the traditional Mayan Deer Dance. They were accompanied by marimba music and the flute. The Maya Deer Dance symbolizes the important relationships between humanity and nature and was evident in the variety of masks worn by the dancers. Some of the dancers wore masks of the faces of men and women, and others wore masks with the faces of the deer, jaguar, monkey among others. All the dancers wore clothing that was very colorfully adorned.
After the opening entertainment, Pablo Collado once again played a beautiful rendition of the Belize National Anthem on his flute and was followed by a prayer by Reverend Canon Leroy Flowers.
Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture, Hon. Manuel Heredia gave the welcome address and invited everyone to enjoy the night's festivities. Minister Heredia's keynote was that Belize is the Heartland of the Maya.
Hon. Manuel Heredia was followed by none other than Dr. Jaime Awe, who is Belize's Director at the Institute of Archaeology. Dr. Awe has been in the field of archaeology for over 30 years. Dr. Jaime Awe has been one of Belize's pioneering and most prominent archaeologists and has worked on many of Belize's major excavations. Dr. Jaime Awe, however, did not want to take away any accolades from the guest of the evening, Dr. Mark Van Stone who was yet to present his topic of the evening. "What The Mayas Actually Said About 2012".
Then came time for the unveiling of the calendar of events for the Maya 2012 Calendar. I must admit that the calendar is filled with many events covering various parts of the country and numerous activities. There are great events scheduled for each month of the year 2012. President of NICH and Chairperson of the 2012 Committee, Ms. Diane C. Haylock, definitely stressed the importance of this years activities for 2012 and the goals they are trying to achieve by having such activities. Ms. Diane Haylock made mention again of Belize being the Heartland of the Maya. Belize is unique among its neighbors of the Mundo Maya because here, a visitor can easily experience several of the Maya sites in one day as the distances between sites are relatively small and there is a high concentration of Maya sites within Belizen borders. In most countries of the Mundo Maya, the archaeological sites are separated by long distances.  Then came time for Ms. Diane Haylock to unveil the Maya 2012 Passport. A phenomenal deal is being offered where for the price of visiting two Maya ruins you get an opportunity to visit ten different Maya sites. You can get your 2012 Maya Passport stamped as you visit the different sites around Belize.
The Belize Tourism Board then officially launched its website for this year Maya 2012. You can see the website here:  http://belizemaya2012.com. The website is very informative so feel free to take a look.

Before the lecture began the attendees were treated to mouth watering Maya dishes including, corn panades, tamales, chicken cooked in 'col' which is a richly spiced tomato and corn based sauce, and dukunu as well as a delicious array of fresh vegetables and tropical fruits. The Otaxa Deer Dancers took to the stage entertaining the audience as they flowed into the Center for Performing Arts Auditorium for the lecture by Dr. Mark Van Stone.
Dr Jaime Awe then introduced the guest speaker for the evening, Dr. Mark Van Stone who was to present, "What The Ancient Maya Actually Said About 2012".  Dr. Mark Van Stone is a Maya expert specializing in Maya Hieroglyphs and calligraphy. Van Stone’s books include “2012: Science and Prophecy of the Ancient Maya” inspired by Maya inscriptions, astronomical knowledge, math, and myth, and “Reading the Maya Glyphs”. Responding to the recent upsurge in interest in “the Maya prophecies”, Prof. Mark Van Stone has spent the last several years researching what the Ancient Maya actually said about 2012.
Dr. Van Stone made sure to mention that nowhere in the history of the Maya is a doomsday prophecy emphasized, but they did, in fact, mention of a renewal period and a change in the Maya Calendar from a short period calendar to a long period calendar. There is also evidence from the the Maya history found on stellaes, that life and history actually continue to 4772 A.D. as can be seen below in the photo. He believes that the Sosltices were not as important to the Maya as we believe they were. He also made mention that with only 1% of the Maya civilization being unearthed that there is not much data and still so much more that we need to learn about the mystical and ancient civilization of the Maya. Dr. Mark Van Stone said that whatever data have been unearthed are contradictory since the Maya did not believe in correcting errors. The Maya did not change errors because they saw it as a sign from the gods that it was meant to be so. Maya scholars also disagree on the information that has been found and their interpretations.

The Maya 2012 Calender of events is shown below:

One of the very special events taking place this year on the calender is a very new and unique concept in Belize. The date 12-12-12 offers a great opportunity for 36 lucky couples, who are interested in being a part of the mysticism of the Maya, to get married or renew their vows on the ancient Maya Ruin of Cahal Pech in the Cayo District of Belize. This once in a lifetime event is being spearheaded by Lara Goldman of Romantic Travel Belize. For more information visit 2012 Maya Weddings.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Belize is a very photogenic country

Belize is a very photogenic country. Most photographers that travel to the beautiful country of Belize knows this and normally travel with their cameras very handy.

If you are looking to photograph and capture the wildlife, landscapes, seascapes, people, food among many others you can certainly find it in the small Centeral American nation of Belize.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Belize is one of the most spectacular places to observe the Moon and the Stars

Photo taken by: Will Moreno
Belize is one of the most spectacular places in the world to observe the moon and stars.
The sunrise and sunsets are just as amazing and if you don't believe me, you can come see for yourself.

Make sure to plan a trip to Belize for 2012!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

How to decide whether or not to sell and how to price your property?

How to decide whether or not to sell and how to price your property?

Understanding what your home is worth can help you decide whether or not to sell, how to price your property, and whether your property is holding its value.

Consider getting a comparative market analysis (CMA) done by a certified real estate professional like Platinum International Real Estate and Investments or an appriasal. Bear in mind that these estimates are based on local sales and prices at one point in time, and may not reflect other issues affecting your home's value.

It also helps to have a basic understanding for what drives home values. When you bought your home, you bought it for its inherent value. Inherent value is what attracted you to the house in the first place: architecture, quality of construction, landscaping, even just how the house felt to you. But property value, or market value, depends on many other factors:

What's your home worth?

Direct factors:

Community: Efficient services, adequate resources, and a thriving business district usually translate into healthy property values. So can a community's history and identity, and its perceived desirability by current buyers.

Neighborhood: A neighborhood that is attractive, safe, and well-located usually results in stable or steadily appreciating property values.

Schools: Good schools and solid property values go hand in hand.

Amenities: Parks, bike paths, libraries, and other amenities can enhance property values, provided that the areas are kept clean and safe.

Transportation: Whether it's public transportation or easy road access, easy access to transportation can be a plus for property values, especially if you need to drive to a job or the grocery store.

Zoning and planning: Property values can be positively or negatively affected by zoning decisions and community development plans.

Indirect factors:

Economic changes: A rising economy lifts most home prices and boosts sales; a depressed economy carries home prices and sales down with it.

Demographic changes: Until fairly recently, home prices grew steadily as waves of new residents competed for a limited supply of housing. In smaller areas however, prices remained low as entry-level buyers move to job-rich metropolitan areas.

Disasters: Earthquakes, hurricanes, wildfire, and other severe natural phenomena can decimate property values, at least temporarily. Recurring problems can depress values permanently, and affect a buyer's ability to obtain homeowners' insurance, without which no lender will approve a mortgage.

Perceptions: Perceptions, negative or positive, real or unreal, can drive property values into the ground or into the stratosphere.It's important to know where your neighborhood stands.

If you would like more information on determining value or would like to find out how much your home is worth call Platinum International Real Estate and Investments today.