Rich in Haiti: Daily Life in Haiti for the Wealthy

The rich in Haiti live well. Extremely well.

When you google “why is America”, the search engine will try to help you complete the question, suggesting rich? fat? in debt? violent? stupid? great? or maybe so great? I can confirm that America is all of those things.

In contrast, googling “why is haiti” will get you these suggestions: so poor, in poverty, less developed, a failed state, deforested, and corrupt.

In searching for answers about Haiti’s poor, I think we end up letting off the hook the few rich who are making out like bandits, often times exploiting the

poor in Haiti to their own advantage. Let’s have a look at the rich in Haiti, where they live, what they do, and how they do it.

Rich in Haiti: Petitionville Elite

Petionville, where the rich in Haiti live

Petionville is a suburb of Port au Prince and consists of houses layed out on rolling hills.

Hotel Montana is where the Rich in Haiti live

When tourists go to Haiti and opt for the “scenic route”, Petionville is where they’ll likely end up living. Tourism accounts for a good chunk of Haiti’s economy, thou tourism is down since the earthquake.

Petionville houses the rich in haiti, outside are tent sities

Literally look down on the poor. In the outskirts of Petionville, a lack of suitable government structure has lead to tent towns being formed with people looking to land any job they can while caring for their family.

Rich in Haiti employ the poor in haiti

Most of the wealthy elite in Haiti are families that originally came from other countries and invested early on. Families from France, Lebanon, Syria, and Germany saw a lax and ineffectual government as fertile ground for business with cheap labor and little competition.

Rich in Haiti have all of the power

The infamous one percenters are prevalent in Haiti as well as every other country. One percent of Haitians are in control of 50 percent of the economy. Pictured above is Gregory Brandt, a soap and oil magnate, he is also the president of the French-Haitian Chamber of Commerce.

Haiti rich kids enjoy the easy life

The children of the Rich in Haiti tend to be educated off-island – often in Paris, France or in the United States. The kids are only a short flight away from Miami shopping sprees and access to large American bank accounts.

Photos: Paolo Woods

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  1.' says

    They should have a national database in Haiti that publish economic status and activities of everyone in private and public sectors and a practicable way to verify their reported income, spending,how much tax they pay, customs privileges,conflicts of interest etc. Such procedure would be able to indicate mismatch between revenues and wealth. In other word it will be able to raise the red flag on Public Servants, Politicians, Business persons that accumulate wealth beyond what their income suggests. This is one among other procedures that will help to reduce the gap between the haves and have-nots


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