Buying A Rolex.. St. Thomas Or St. Maarten?

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#1
new albany ohio USA
38 Posts
Joined Jun 2004
Celebrating our anniversary my husband wants to by me a Rolex. Where will be "dealing" be better? St. Thomas or should we wait and shop in St. Maarten? Anyone purchase this timepiece while visiting these islands and what store do you purchase at? Thanks!!
#2
Astoria, NY
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Joined Dec 2004
My wife bought me a Bolex in St. Thomas for our anniversary for $10.
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#3
4,250 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Be very careful and research counterfits completely before travelling. The deals are not what they are cracked up to be! If I were spending that much money, I would go to a reputable jeweler in the US>
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#4
Syracuse, NY
51 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
I purchased a Movado watch last year when we were crusing. Best deals were in St. Maarten...handsdown. Shop in St. Thomas but buy in St. Maarten.
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#5
Minnesota
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Joined May 2006
Originally posted by lvtotrvl1
Be very careful and research counterfits completely before travelling. The deals are not what they are cracked up to be! If I were spending that much money, I would go to a reputable jeweler in the US>
I too would work stateside for a purchase this large. Deals are better in St Thomas compared to St Mart.
#6
16,442 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
I would stick to St. Thomas since it is a US territory and all US laws apply. You are also guaranteed of a US warranty if bought there. St. Martin of course, is Dutch and you do not necessarily have the same protections available.

Have no concerns about buying in the Caribbean though (as long as you shop one of the "big name" stores or a ship suggested store.)

You will save a minimum of 7 - 8 % because there is no tax, and possibly a lot more, just do your homework on a big purchase like this and be prepared to go over your duty free allotment on return.
#7
Florida
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Joined Aug 2003
You can only buy a Rolex at an authorized dealer. In St. Thomas it used to be H. I. Riise (I think). Google Rolex and it'll have a listing of their dealers. Do your shopping at home before you leave and make sure you know what model you want. The best price I ever saw for a Rolex was in the Beau Rivage casino in Biloxi, Mississippi. In St. Thomas they told me it was a good price and they couldn't come close.
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#8
Memphis, Tn area
25,294 Posts
Joined Dec 2002
A H Rise in St Thomas sadly did not have the "best price" on Rolex or a very large selection when I was there.

John Bull's in Nassau has the best selection and better prices...but Kirk's in the Grand Cayman has the very best price and a good selection.

These are all reputable Rolex dealers. I bought mine at Kirk's in Grand Cayman. I did buy some diamond earrings at A H Rise in St Thomas.
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#9
Memphis, Tn area
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Joined Dec 2002
Originally posted by lvtotrvl1
Be very careful and research counterfits completely before travelling. The deals are not what they are cracked up to be! If I were spending that much money, I would go to a reputable jeweler in the US>
Very good advice. I had been looking at my Rolex for several years at Kirk's as we would visit Grand Cayman. On our Conquest, New Years cruise in 2003, the CD Corey Schmidt is the one who convinced hubby that Kirk's had the best price. Corey was on his 4th Rolex. He had the Super President and it was beautiful. And all his Rolex watches came from Kirks. (even though his family is in the jewerly business here in the States ~ just not a Rolex dealer)
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#10
Oregon/Barbados
759 Posts
Joined May 2001
With the higher priced Rolex watches (Oyster Perpetual Gold; President), a person can fly to Dubai (UAE) from North America, vacation for a week, buy the watch, fly home and still have saved $US5K+ off list price of the watch!

Dubai rules for bargains....wish it were in the Caribbean...

It’s a fun way to justify a vacation and get a new watch, to boot!

-b-
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#11
8,028 Posts
Joined May 2000
Originally posted by diznycrzy622
Celebrating our anniversary my husband wants to by me a Rolex. Where will be "dealing" be better? St. Thomas or should we wait and shop in St. Maarten? Anyone purchase this timepiece while visiting these islands and what store do you purchase at? Thanks!!
Of the two ports you mentioned, you will get the best price in St. Maarten. Little Switzerland (authorized dealer) is an extremely reputable outfit to deal with.

PE
#12
Gulfport, MS
231 Posts
Joined Apr 2002
My husband got a Rolex for his 50th birthday. We live in Mississippi. After much consideration he decided to buy the watch in the US to make sure he was getting an authorized dealer. We paid retail at a store in New Orleans but we had the watch shipped to us and didn't pay sales tax. This represented a significant amount of money......
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#13
Fort Mill, SC
642 Posts
Joined Apr 2002
And don't forget to pay duty...which also erodes your savings on sales tax. We bought two Rolexes in Aruba, and did pay the duty. When we were paying, we were told that watches are one of the things that Customs looks for. Before we cruised, we had also heard rumors that the stores reported the sales, but I don't know if that was a scare tactic or not. If you get caught with undeclared big-ticket items, they might make an example of you...(as a professional, that was the last thing I wanted to risk.)

We've never encountered a Rolex-authorized store that negotiated on Rolex watches the way they do on other items. And when one of our watches needed to be serviced, it flew to NY just the same as if I bought it locally...except that maybe my local jeweler would have mailed it and charged me for packing as part of their "service" fee.

Even if they won't negotiate much on the price of the watch, you might get them to throw in a gold chain or some other piece!
#14
59 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
St Maarten. My boyfriend is a true barter tried St. Thomas first and bought in St. Maarten. They cannot sell below but he got it for not much over. Till this day he still prices them and never came close. This was two years ago. Not sure when you are going...I could get the name of the store for you if there is time.