British Virgin Islands
History of Resorts
No Frames

The BVI tourist industry was put on the map by the development of Little Dix Bay by Lawrence Rockefeller in 1964 (see Little Dix Bay Celebrates 35th Anniversery). The Moorings boat charter company came here five years later.

Bitter End

In the 1960s, five cottages were built at the Bitter End for adventuresome sailors, like the teenaged circumnavigator, Robin Lee Graham, whose 5 year journey around the globe, chronicled in his memoir Dove, included some months helping with the construction: "Some people here at a place called The Bitter End are building a resort. They have found a really lovely spot and they’ve hauled in all the material they need."

Still there, the original "rustic" cottages are described in The History of Bitter End:

"Accommodations were rustic. Beds were made with paper sheets, and only cold water ran in the bathrooms. Evening lights were provided by an old diesel generator and water was collected on the roofs and stored in cisterns that doubled as cottage foundations. If visiting yachtsmen came for dinner, they were required to approach a long wooden pier and sound their boat’s air horn. If Basil, an eccentric Englishman, felt sociable, he would respond by megaphone and the visitor would be allowed to come ashore and buy a meal. The evening would last until Basil would abruptly decide it was time for lights out and shut down the generator."

Later, the Bitter End, bought by Myron and Bernice Hokin as a family retreat, has grown into the world’s finest watersports resort.

Previously the BVI had a agricultural and maritime economy based on cattle, fishing and similar activities. See Traditional Life in the BVI.

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