The Courtyard Mall and the Caliente

The advent of urban shopping malls in Guyana has accommodated a surfeit of small businesses — retail trade pursuits that include cafeterias, costume jewellery shops and boutiques.

Situated on Robb Street opposite the Stabroek News, the Courtyard Mall has attracted its own fair share of small business enterprises. Just over a year ago, New York-based Guyanese Mark Raghubir launched Caliente Boutique in the Courtyard Mall, adding to the various other modest business enterprises which he has been operating in Guyana. Raghubir told Stabroek Business that in establishing the Caliente he was simply being consistent with a tradition of “being in business.”

Since migrating to the United States about seven years ago he has established a company named American Parts Direct, but says he continues to feel the need to remain connected to Guyana; more than that he has become acutely aware of the fashion consciousness of Guyanese.

The Caliente boutique
The Caliente boutique

“Actually we run a full boutique. We can dress people from head to toe and what we seek to do is to cater for a range of tastes and ages. Because we focus on quality and standards, we are inclined to import only the best brands. Confidence in products is what we are all about,” Raghubir says.

A cautious businessman, he says that while, over time he seeks to expand the establishment, trading in Guyana has been a sobering experience. “The first year of business was actually quite good though the past six months have been slow,” he said. However, he remains optimistic, pointing out that he wants to continue to show an interest in business in Guyana.

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