Mar 24, 2022 - Business

The Parrotheads are changing what it means to retire

A photo of palm trees and the signage outside of Latitude Margaritaville.
The Latitude Margaritaville Watersound development west of Panama City Beach. Photo: Mike Fender/The News Herald via Imagn Content Services, LLC

The New Yorker's Nick Paumgarten has found the "Bitcoin for boomers," and it's right here in Florida. In fact, it's the next big thing in retirement: Latitude Margaritaville.

  • In "Retirement the Margaritaville Way," Paumgarten hangs out in the booming active-living communities for Jimmy Buffett enthusiasts aged "55 and better" that are now open in Daytona Beach and Watersound, near Panama City Beach.

The takeaway: Latitude Margaritaville is like when your retirement party never ends.

Here's an excerpt, in which Paumgarten is talking to Allen Farkas, a retired pharmaceutical salesman originally from Brooklyn who slept in the parking lot to be among the first buyers at the Latitude Margaritaville in Daytona Beach:

"This is by far the greatest place I've ever lived," Farkas said. "Ninety-nine per cent of the people here are wonderful. The one per cent you don't deal with. They'd bitch and f---ing moan wherever they lived. You can find miserable people everywhere. If you can't be happy here, you can't be happy anywhere."

Regarding The Villages, 70 miles west: "That's where our parents live," Farkas said.

Of note: Tampa ad agency United Landmark Associates launched the Latitude Margaritaville brand.

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