Archive for the ‘Activities’ Category

Guest Blog – A working week in St. Barth

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

Bonjour St. Barth Lovers,

Connie Walsh and her husband Michael came to St. Barth to visit us at the end of March. Connie is our St. Barth Properties marketing and travel industry consultant and has been with us for 10 years. Connie and I had work to do while Mike and my husband Steve enjoyed their daily routine of going to the bakery for their just-baked baguettes and a few pastries, grocery shopping and then preparing our lunches to put in the cooler just in case we could sneak a few hours in with them at the beach.

Today’s guest blog was written by Connie – Enjoy.

Sunny regards,
Peg

Connie Walsh – Trip Report

I’ve always looked forward to visiting sunny St. Barth but never more than this March. I’m from Boston and if that doesn’t prompt an “enough said”, the painful fact is, we suffered through a winter of record cold, howling winds and 110.6 inches of snow! Hubby in tow, I flew to St. Maarten and hopped on the “puddle-jumper” for a working trip in paradise. We joined St. Barth Properties’ President Peg Walsh – she and her husband are in residence for the season. Peg had set up a week’s stay for all of us at Villa Azur. We had a busy agenda planned with some time built in to relax a bit and enjoy the island’s charm, its gorgeous beaches and its world-class dining.

Villa Azur

Villa Azur

St. Barth’s balmy temperatures and tropical breezes never felt so good and within an hour of arriving at Villa Azur we were floating in the solar-heated infinity pool. Contemporary in style and décor the villa is nicely private with a terrace outside each of its three en suite bedrooms. A chic, spacious living room opens onto a covered alfresco dining terrace and adjacent sprawling pool deck. A bonus roof deck features a pavilion with a day bed perfect for a shaded snooze, and chaises for sunning. It’s one of the many spots from which to enjoy the panoramic view that embraces the sea and neighboring islands. The sunsets here are spectacular and observing the island tradition, we toasted the fiery sphere and our first night on the island with a chilled glass of crisp Sancerre. Ahh, St. Barth. Then we were off to meet friends for a seaside birthday celebration dinner at the Hotel Taïwana.

Villa Azur Living Room

Villa Azur Living Room

I love this villa’s Lurin location – just a short drive to Gustavia’s shops and boutiques and one of my favorite beaches – Gouverneur. We headed down one day with a picnic lunch and happily secured a spot beneath the entrance’s spreading sea grape tree. We swam, strolled and just sat enjoying all that undeveloped beauty. No wonder it’s the fave of oligarchs and local families alike.

Villa Azur is also just around the corner from one of my favorite restaurants, the perennially popular Santa Fe and so, of course we dined there. My husband’s go-to is the exquisitely prepared Dover sole; Me, I Iove almost everything on the menu and adored the gnocchi starter – delish with a gorgonzola cream sauce. I often end with the old-school classic dessert Peach Melba but always have to have a little taste when my companions order the profiteroles – shaped as swans.

Part of the job (no complaints) is assessing new restaurants and keeping updated on changes in ownerships, chefs and menus. We dined at the newly reopened harbor side Provença (formerly the Wall House) where they are doing a fine job focusing on dishes of France’s Provence region. Le Tamarin, on the road to Saline Beach, also reopened under new ownership and it’s worthy of all the buzz it’s garnering. The garden oasis setting is chic and so St. Barth-y. My deconstructed warm goat cheese salad tasted as divine as it looked. Saline Beach lovers – Le Tamarin is open for lunch and libations so consider a pre-or-post visit and they do a Sunday Brunch.

The deconstructed warm goat cheese appetizer at Le Tamarin

The deconstructed warm goat cheese appetizer at Le Tamarin

The only difficult aspect of spending a week in St. Barth is that there are always more than seven fabulous restaurants and it’s so hard to choose. We did get to include some of our favorites, Le Carré, with its sophisticated and eclectic menu and Thai food at Black Ginger – love their chicken curry.

A good portion of the days were busy with villa inspections including the new Ananda with its wow pool and meetings. We got all the history of the Moke and how and when these beloved vehicles will be reintroduced to the island. Fun! Stay tuned.

The Moke is back in St. Barth!

The Moke is back in St. Barth!

Happily, we worked in some beach time on Saturday afternoon at St. Jean and later secured a couple of empty bar stools and some cold Caribes at La Plage’s Pink Parrot bar. We made it just in time to observe the tail end of their Bikini Brunch – complete with pink plastic flamingos, bowls of Planters Punch, Jeroboams of rosé and loads of happy, dancing patrons. Woo – hoo.

A highlight of the trip was a Sunday afternoon catamaran excursion to Colombier Beach. Joined by some long-time clients we were a group of six and we couldn’t have had a more gorgeous day. Miguel, owner of St. Barth Sailor, was our captain – and crew. We set off at 1pm from the dock in Gustavia, drinks in hand – and in the cooler – Planteurs Punch, wine, soft drinks and icy cold beer. The 52 ft. Catamaran is sleek and luxurious with lots of room for lounging on deck (picture yourself – feet up on a built-in day bed) an air-conditioned cabin cum kitchenette and the all-important “head”. The beautiful and secluded Colombier Beach is only accessible by hiking or by boat. We chose the boat. Good choice.

After a delightful sail, we dropped anchor just off the beach and noodled about in those brilliant blue warm waters; some of us swam in and walked along the shore. Others relaxed on board and did some people and yacht watching while sipping rosé and noshing on gourmet goodies. Happily they saved some for the swimmers!

We anchored off of Colombier Beach and jumped into the gorgeous water with our noodles

We anchored off of Colombier Beach and jumped into the gorgeous water with our noodles

Our half day trip to Colombier included an open bar and delicious snacks

Our half day trip to Colombier included an open bar and delicious snacks

After a bit, we sailed on, mooring just off Shell Beach, popped open a bottle of Champagne and listened to Dõ Brazil’s DJ spinning tunes. What a great day. St. Barth Properties’ concierge team can book a variety of full and ½ day excursions for you. You’ll love it.

We made a late afternooon stop off of Shell Beach before returning to port

We made a late afternooon stop off of Shell Beach before returning to port

And so back to Boston and a little more snow. Looking forward to my next visit.

What’s happening in St. Barth? The latest news from St. Barth as of December 30, 2014

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

Bonjour from sunny St. Barth!

I am so happy to be back on this very special island and fortunate to be based here until the middle of May. The weather is gorgeous; the holiday decorations are especially eye-catching, the yachts line both sides of the harbor (except when they had to leave for three days due to a sizable houle (large swells) and the festivities are in full swing. I am lucky to have some of my family visiting us (my son, Mark Smyth, his wife Cynthia and their three children, Reegan, Lilia, and Nate); we are enjoying the beach, the restaurants, and the vibe. Can you guess where this photo was taken?

We are so happy that my son Mark Smyth, his wife Cynthis and three of our grandchildren, Reegan, Lilia and Nate could join us for the holidays

We are so happy that my son Mark Smyth, his wife Cynthis and three of our grandchildren, Reegan, Lilia and Nate could join us for the holidays

On Christmas Day, we went to St. Jean beach. Santa and his helper improvised his sleigh and arrived by H2O Jet Pack! Do you want to try it? We can book it for you.

Santa's sleigh St. Barth Style

Santa’s sleigh St. Barth Style

What’s new? Airport parking regulations:

For those of you who have been to St. Barth before, you will notice some signs (in French, however) indicating a 30 minute parking restriction Monday through Saturday between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. in the lot at the Gustav III airport. I observed that the “parking patrol” was at-the-ready to give out tickets.

The 30 minute parking sign at the St. Barth airport

The 30 minute parking sign at the St. Barth airport

Be sure to use your “Blue Disk” specifying the time you arrived on the face of the clock. The disk should be found in your rental car.

Blue Disk for parking in certain areas of St. Barth

Blue Disk for parking in certain areas of St. Barth

What if you need to park for a longer period? The Collectivité bought the lot across the street and has instituted St. Barth’s first paid parking lot. The good part is that the first hour is free; I don’t think that most of you will need more than an hour to do your thing at the airport, so to me, it’s a good solution.

Tarifs for the paking lot across the steet from the Gustave III airport in St. Barth

Tarifs for the paking lot across the steet from the Gustave III airport in St. Barth

For the areas in Gustavia look for the signs and use your disk. The island has added parking limits in the lot by the yachts and the ferry dock, too. The Gustavia limit remains at 90 minutes. Enforcement is between 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

New St. Barth restaurants:

I love to try the new restaurants so that I can report to you. Steve and I have already managed to dine at two of them. The first one, Avventura is located in Gustavia across the street from Eddy’s and on the same side of the street as Black Ginger. In years past, it was called the Sapotillier, B-4 and Ocean. They bill themselves as a ristorante/pizzeria but they also have some nice more traditional items including meat and fish dishes. We enjoyed sharing the Queues de crevette au saté appetizer. The pizza prices range from 10 to 22 euros.

Avventura Shrimp Sate

Avventura Shrimp Sate

The other restaurant that we were able to try is L’Escale d’Avriette; it is located on the other side (La Pointe side) of the harbor in the space where Harbours used to be. It’s a Créole restaurant with a harbor view that is owned by a St. Barth family and named after their mother, Avriette. When I first set foot on St Barth in 1986, I was introduced to the stuffed Christophine at the now long gone Marigot Bay Club restaurant that was run by Michele Ledée, an affable man who was born in St. Barth. At the time, it was my favorite restaurant; the food and view were wonderful. I also enjoyed watching a handsome young waiter put on his bathing suit, swim out to the lobster trap that had been sunk in the bay, pick the langoustes that his patrons had just ordered for dinner, swim back, and quickly change into his clothes again. (Sorry for the walk down memory lane…) Anyway, I was thrilled to see the stuffed Christophine on the menu because so many restaurants have stopped serving it as it takes a lot of time to prepare. It is a type of squash and has flesh that is scraped out, mixed with langouste and vegetables, then re-stuffed into the shell, topped with cheese and grilled to perfection. Try it and let me know if you like it.

The stuffed Christophine at L'Escale d'Avriette

The stuffed Christophine at L’Escale d’Avriette

We are gearing up for New Year’s Eve and I hope you are too. I’ll keep you posted on the latest happenings on your favorite island.

The 2014 St. Barth CataCup is a must see event!

Thursday, October 30th, 2014

Our very own John Casey continues to work his way towards realizing his dream of racing in the 2016 Olympics

St. Barth Properties Sotheby’s International Realty is pleased to once again be sponsoring John Casey in the 2014 St. Barth CataCup’s very exciting catamaran race November 20-23, 2014. An avid fan of regatta, aspiring American Olympian John Casey is joining the competition for the 6th time. Casey, who is training in the Nacra 17 event with teammate Sarah Newberry, hopes to take advantage of the St. Barth Cata Cup to have fun and to work on his racing skills with a view to the Olympics. In the St. Barth race, his partner is Colin Page. They will be staying in our lovely two bedroom Villa A Bientôt located in Toiny.

Villa A Bientôt

Villa A Bientôt

“The St. Barth regatta is the one event I need,” declares Casey. “It isn’t just the perfect sailing and surroundings, it’s all the friends that I’ve made over the years. It’s a high-level competition but relaxed and easy. Olympic training and racing is very structured and in a word, ‘work.’ But the CataCup is a place to put your training to the test in a very fluid manner because there are many obstacles to endure and angles to sail to win. Nothing about the CataCup is straightforward on and off the water. You never know what is going to happen next!”

John Casey

John Casey continues his preparation for the 2016 Olympics by participating in the St. Barth CataCup. Go John!

It will also be an opportunity for Casey to pit himself against new Nacra 17 World Champion Billy Besson from France, who will be taking part in the regatta for the first time.

“Our event sparks wild enthusiasm among racers all over the world,” explained Vincent Jordil, creator of the St. Barth Cata Cup. “Obviously, John’s participation raises the level of competition. Although our event is intended to be a friendly competition, the fact remains that the sailors like to take part in a high-caliber race.”

It’s not too late to reserve your hotel or villa for the event. Just contact me or reservations@stbarth.com.

St. Barth Properties US office Concierge, Julia Hurd’s Trip Report

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Did you ever wonder what goes on behind the scenes that makes your trip to St. Barth so remarkable?

Here is one of the reasons:

Bonjour Everyone,

Julia Hurd

Julia Hurd

I hope that you had a very enjoyable summer. Today’s blog was written by our fabulous Concierge Julia Hurd from our US office. If you have not already had the pleasure of working with Julia, you will be very impressed when you do. Julia helps all of our clients arrange any services they may wish her to organize for them…car rentals and dinner reservations, private chef and spa services, babysitters, birthday parties etc. Basically, everything on a person’s wish list will magically be set up and ready upon arrival.

In order for Julia to accomplish this feat, traveling to St. Barth to touch base with our St. Barth Properties Sotheby’s International Realty office’s Concierge, Magda Votava and meet all of our service partners is a must.

Enjoy,
Peg

Julia’s Trip Report

by Julia Hurd
US Concierge, St Barth Properties

Kathy Schlitzer, one of our St. Barth Villa Specialists, and I travel well together and this trip was no exception. We departed Boston, MA with JetBlue direct to St. Maarten. Once we arrived Easyway VIP Service was waiting for us to assist us through the St. Maarten airport to the Voyager Ferry.

Photo of Easyway VIP Agents in SXM

Easyway VIP Agents in SXM

Once we arrived into St. Barth we headed off to the Hotel Taïwana and we had the most beautiful two bedroom Jade Suite with a private pool. We settled in after a long day of travel and Sunday woke up and walked the beach of Flamands. The hotel is stunning and everyone there was so generous and kind. I wish I could have stayed longer.

Monday morning I went to our office in Gustavia to start my work week with Magda, our on island concierge. We speak daily and it is nice to see her in person. My first order of business is to collect updated information of the new and exciting things that the island has to offer, so we headed off to the Tourist Office in Gustavia.

SBP Office in Gustavia

SBP Office in Gustavia

The island of St. Barth has so much to offer, each time I visit, I learn something new.

I was excited to dine at some new restaurants on the island: Black Ginger, Ocean and of course my all time favorite Santa Fé.

Here is my Dover Sole that I enjoyed at Santa Fe

Here is my Dover Sole that I enjoyed at Santa Fé

I love fish, so I heard that the grocery store in Lorient called L’Oasis now has a Fish market for those guests that want to sleep in and not meet the local fisherman in Gustavia to see what the daily catch is. I took a ride to check it out. WOW if you want to stay in one night and cook, then I would suggest taking a look at their beautiful array of fish. They have many choices and all are packed on ice to stay fresh.

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I wanted to take a ride around the island to explore, so Magda and I decided to take a little excursion in Grand Fond; many clients enjoy hiking to see the Washing Machine. Make sure you wear sneakers; no flip flops for this hike.

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We also took the hike to Fort Karl, 63 steps up to the most spectacular view overlooking Gustavia harbor on one side and Shell Beach on the other.

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After that Magda and I hopped in the car to explore; we came across some new friends on the road. I also saw some ponies at the stables in Gouverneur.

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After our adventure I headed to the beautiful villa Méli Mélo where I would stay until I departed. This villa has the most stunning views from the front and the back. The front view overlooks St. Jean, the sea and the planes landing over the mountain; the villa was provided with binoculars, so I took advantage of using them. It was amazing to see the planes land and take off. The rear view looks out to the beautiful water at Saline Beach.

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I was lucky to be on the island for our last cocktail party of the season held at La Plage on St Jean Beach, I was happy to meet so many of our clients that I talk to and assist in planning their dream vacations on St. Barth. It was nice to spend time getting to know them better and in person. It just so happened to be Magda’s birthday, so Kathy and I invited her and her beautiful daughter Valérie to join us for dinner.

It was, as always, sad to leave, but I had to get home to make sure that I could share all my adventures and new knowledge of St. Barth with all of you. Call me anytime. I love my job!

A bientôt, St. Barth.

Enjoy Another Exhilarating Activity in St. Barth and Hike to Pointe à Toiny

Friday, April 25th, 2014

John Casey, the very skilled catamaran sailor who races in the St. Barth CataCup each year and is vying for a spot on the 2016 Olympic Team in Rio, read my blog about the hike to Washing Machine and the Natural Pools. He suggests another great trail for you to try and is sharing his enthusiasm for the hike to Pointe à Toiny in today’s guest blog.

A TYPICAL DAY ON A NOT SO TYPICAL ISLAND BY JOHN CASEY

A majority of my time in St. Barth is spent on the water racing by popular beaches and jagged points, but that’s only where the adventure begins. While I’m not sailing, I enjoy staying fit and doing activities far from everyday life. As soon as we drive east from Gustavia Harbor, the reality of being on a pristine island in seclusion really sets in.

My best day on the island was with my fiancée. Well, she’s my wife now. I think the trips to St. Barth helped seal the deal! We slept in, which is also easy to do on the island, and woke up with the trade winds blowing through Villa Les Mouettes one of St. Barth Properties delightful villas in Vitet.

Villa Les Mouettes

Villa Les Mouettes

With a good’s night sleep we decided to go on a hike. I’ve been to the island many times, but there was still a place I hadn’t been to yet, Pointe à Toiny. I realized I hadn’t been there because the hike to Grand Fond’s Washing Machine and Natural Pools that Peg describes is such a good one.

When we looked off of our porch that morning a quick shower passed through and greeted us with a rainbow.

A pretty rainbow appeared in  the view from our villa  Les Mouettes that morning

A pretty rainbow appeared in the view from our villa Les Mouettes that morning

We decided to go for a café au lait and some quick eats for the hike, so we stopped by Maya’s To Go. Carolina decided on Salmon and edamame salad. I had a very tasty quinoa-mandarin orange bowl.

Carolina holding the door open for me, so nice!

Carolina holding the door open for me, so nice!

I really looked forward to this hike. I’ve sailed around the island so many times and saw the cliffs of Toiny, but I always thought the windward side of the island wasn’t habitable. I did know it’s the most treacherous part of the island to sail by with its large waves and unforgiving rocks.

We snaked on winding roads from St. Jean to Hotel Le Toiny and pulled up the road leading to the hotel. It seems like there is nowhere to go after pulling in, but we drove straight by the hotel to a small gravel area on the right with room to park. From there we walked down a small grassy road toward Pointe à Toiny. The view kept getting better.

This hike is extra special since it’s on the windward side of the island. The breeze blows over Pt. Toiny making for a relaxing cool hike.

We begin not far from Hotel Le Toiny

We begin not far from Hotel Le Toiny

Pt. Toiny to some is easy rock climbing, but be careful because a majority of the rocks are loose and you can lose your footing easily.

Carolina gets daring on the rocks

Carolina gets daring on the rocks

Along the paths there are a few benches which give you a chance to enjoy the view. We took the opportunity to eat our Maya’s snacks and just soak in the beauty of the south side of the island.

We took time to enjoy the view as well as our snacks

We took time to enjoy the view as well as our snacks

After the hike we were famished again. On St. Barth I exercise more so I’m hungrier and anxious to eat the delicious varieties of gastronomique delights offered throughout the island. Tapas at Txerri Gorria were on the docket that night. I describe it as decadent. In the States I just don’t have the opportunity to enjoy perfectly tender thin sliced duck or foie gras with Himalayan sea salt, which were two of my favorites. The brie was creamy, the wine tasty and I even had a Jade organic beer.

Then there were four more days just as perfect. Thank you St. Barth!

Some St. Barth tidbits for April 2014. What’s up?

Thursday, April 17th, 2014

Just a short note today to update you on the latest news around here…

Les Coulisses restaurant in Gustavia has closed. The harbor side restaurant formerly was the home of Harbour’s. Me Gusta has just moved there from St. Jean and offers tapas with a Portuguese flair. I am going to try it and report back.

Me Gusta restaurant is now located on the harbor

Me Gusta restaurant is now located on the harbor

Pipiri Palace is open for lunch now! You can get French delights such as Croque Monsieur or an omelette and they have a daily special “Formule” for only 16 euros.

In addition to dinner, try Pipiri Palace for lunch

In addition to dinner, try Pipiri Palace for lunch

Oasis grocery store in Lorient has extended its hours. It is now open from 7:00 am to 9:00 pm every single day including Christmas.

La Table de Jules (formerly K’fé Massai) in Lorient is closed for good. I wonder what will replace it? The sushi bar, Koya in the corner section of the restaurant is still open.

The Yacht Club nightclub in Gustavia is closed. (Carole of Le Ti St. Barth is the owner.) She has replaced it with The First Floor which is located upstairs above The Yacht Club. There is late night entertainment quite often. For you night owls, it is open Sunday-Thursday from 10:00 pm until 4:00 am and for you die-hards it stays open until 6:00 am on Fridays and Saturdays. Be aware that the venue has been enclosed to keep the noise from disturbing the neighbors and it can be very smoky. (I don’t understand why I see people smoking in some restaurants and night spots here because it is against the law in France but that is another story.)

Nightclub The First is on the First Floor (2nd floor to Americans)

Nightclub The First is on the First Floor (2nd floor to Americans)

R. Barth, the fancy rhum store has shuttered its doors. The entire contents of the shop including the very expensive old rum, other rums, furniture, a computer and glassware among other things will be auctioned off at 10:00 am April 23, 2014.

Au Revoir, R. St. Barth. We are sorry to see you go.

Au Revoir, R. St. Barth. We are sorry to see you go.

The Black Swan closed its Gustavia store but their larger boutique in St. Jean is open and still has a great selection of beachwear, t-shirts and casual clothing.

Les Soldes: French law dictates when the shops are allowed to have their Soldes (sales) in various areas. In France, for example, there is a period in January when this is allowed to take place but of course at that time of the year St. Barth is in the midst of High Season so full price, it is. People love the shopping here; many say the designer boutiques offer much better pricing than they can get at home.

Don't miss out on Les Soldes

Don’t miss out on Les Soldes

The dates for Les Soldes in 2014 were just announced. You will find a lot of items on sale with the exception of the Nouvelle Collections.

Mark your calendars and get ready to shop ‘til you drop May 03-June 06 and October 11-November 14, 2014.

If you haven’t booked your hotel or villa yet just email me or contact reservations@stbarth.com (1-800-421-3396) and we will begin the process to get you here ASAP.

Enjoy!

The shopping in St. Barth is a must-do

The shopping in St. Barth is a must-do

Hike to the Washing Machine and Natural Pools in Grand Fond

Friday, April 4th, 2014

Steve and I made it back to St. Barth from our trip to Australia where we celebrated our 37th wedding anniversary. The trip from here takes 32 hours. We did not have time to deal with jet lag on the way back because my daughter Kim, grandson Matt along with his Fairfield University roommate Andrew were to arrive two days later for spring break.

Lunch at Le Select with Steve, Matt, Andrew and Kim. It is a must do for anyone vacationing on St. Barth.

Lunch at Le Select with Steve, Matt, Andrew and Kim. It is a must do for anyone vacationing on St. Barth.

We needed a larger villa so I rented the beautiful 3 bedroom Villa Lilu. I fell in love with the villa on my very first inspection so I was thrilled to be able to stay there. It is gorgeous.

Villa Lilu living area

Villa Lilu living area

Everyone wanted to do and see as much as they could while also trying to stay fit so several hikes were put on the agenda. If you are looking for something a bit unusual to do while you are vacationing in St. Barth, set aside a morning or late afternoon to hike to the Natural Pools and Washing Machine located in the unblemished area of Grand Fond.

Drive to Toiny along the main road which eventually leads to Grand Fond, an area of St. Barts that many people say reminds them of Brittany. There are spots where you can park your car above the rocky beach to take photos and listen to the surf crash onto the shore but do not swim there; the current is very dangerous. After your photo op, go a little further and when the road starts to curve, you will see a parking area with enough room for four cars to park.

Parking area by the path that goes to the shore

Parking area by the path that goes to the shore

The path leading to the beach and the trail is on the left.

Take this path to the left of the parking area to get to the shoreline leading to the Natural Pools and Washing Machine

Take this path to the left of the parking area to get to the shoreline leading to the Natural Pools and Washing Machine

When you arrive at the rocky beach which is NOT a swimming beach, turn right and off you go!

Head to the right to access the trail

Head to the right to access the trail

Climb up a few rocks to get to the goat path. (Sneakers or good walking shoes are recommended). The path is easy to follow but it is narrow so you need to walk in single file.

Along the trail the surf crashes against the rocks

Along the trail the surf crashes against the rocks

You will come across a spectacular view of a beach that lies in between where the rocks meet the sea. This spot is known as the “Washing Machine.” The beach was so named because at certain times of the year, the water crashes over the beach and swirls around it mimicking the action of a washing machine. Many people think the Washing Machine is in another area but my expert is Pascale Minarro who works in my St. Barth Office and has lived here for more than 30 years. Pascale walks along the trail every weekend and attests to the fact that this small beach is the authentic Washing Machine.

This photo was taken March 25, 2014 by my grandson Matt Pellegri. It was a beautiful spring day. In the winter months the water can be rough and in the summer months there are swells where expert body surfers enjoy practicing their sport.

Washing Machine

Washing Machine

Matt, advises, “Wear a hat and sunglasses because there is only one spot with shade along the way.” As you continue on the path Matt goes on to say, “It is likely you will see some goats grazing on the mountain along the trail.”

You may need to share the path with Mother Nature

You may need to share the path with Mother Nature

About 25 minutes into your hike, you will be exhilarated by the sight of the natural pools and want to take a dip, so be sure to wear a bathing suit.

The Natural Pools in Grand Fond are formed as a result of the surf crashing over the rocks and trapping the water

Discover The Natural Pools in Grand Fond

Matt wisely states, “Be careful on the climb down as it is a little steep and be extra cautious of the small sea urchins that line the pools.”

The water in the Natural Pools is crystal clear

The water in the Natural Pools is crystal clear

The crystal clear water in the Natural Pools is created by the surf pounding against the high rocks and trapping some of the water that splashes over them.

The contrast between the blue color of the Caribbean Sea against the greenish hue of the natural pools is stunning

The contrast between the blue color of the Caribbean Sea against the greenish hue of the natural pools is stunning

Checklist for your backpack:

  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Water
  • Camera
  • Swim shoes

Enjoy the hike!

Escape the Winter! Come to St. Barth!

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

Bonjour from sunny St. Barth.

I just looked at the outdoor camera showing our house in South Yarmouth Cape Cod and all I see is snow, snow and more snow. I feel so fortunate to be here right now. Are you ready to join me? The weather is 82 degrees today and it will be 75 degrees this evening. There’s a nice breeze and the water temperature is a delightful 77 degrees. Book your flights. We can help you arrange the inter-island flights from San Juan or St. Maarten. Call us for your accommodation; then we’ll reserve your car and meet you at the airport when you arrive.

View from my house on Cape Cod Jan 22 2014

View from my house on Cape Cod Jan 22, 2014

View from my house in St. Barth Jan 22, 2014

View from my house in St. Barth Jan 22, 2014

Start your day with a freshly baked chocolate croissant or a just-out-of-the-oven baguette and sip your café au lait while sitting on your private terrace that overlooks your private pool and the gorgeous view. Forget your stresses at home. Relax. You deserve it.

Lather up with sunscreen; grab a beach towel and a good book and explore the beaches. Want to have a picnic lunch on the beach? Pack a cooler. Throw in a few Heinekens, Caribs and some Perrier; make sandwiches using the remainder of your baguette and off you go. Tomorrow you might want to take a break from the midday sun and enjoy a leisurely lunch along with a bottle of Rosé. Take a nap. Jump in your swimming pool for a refreshing dip.

It’s time for sunset cocktails. Enjoy them at home or hop in your rental car and go to one of the many bistros that face the sunset. Window shop at the boutiques. See something you like? Splurge! Dinner time. One of the biggest decisions to have to make while vacationing in St. Barth is where to dine. The island is renowned for its fabulous restaurants. Need help with that? You will receive my recommendations both before you travel and once to arrive in St. Barth. Our concierge Julia in our US office as well as Magda in our St. Barth are happy to discuss them with you and reserve your table for lunch and/or dinner.

Shopping in St. Barth

Shopping in St. Barth

Sunset in St. Barth

Sunset in St. Barth

We have some beautiful villas where you can stay. Prefer to stay in a hotel? We can arrange that too. Just give us a call at 1-800-421-3396, + 1-508-528-7727 or email reservations@stbarth.com.

A Bientôt!

The 2013 St. Barth CataCup Guest Blog by 2016 Olympics Contender John Casey

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

Bonjour Everyone,

As you prepare for Turkey Day, I thought you would enjoy today’s Guest Blog written by 2016 Olympics contender John Casey. St. Barth Properties Sotheby’s International Realty is proud to be a sponsor of his catamaran. Thank you John!

As I enjoy the back porch view from Villa Les Mouettes, I now have time to casually reflect on this year’s edition of the St. Barth CataCup. The current version of the CataCup, which has become one of the premier regattas of the world, is sailed on 18 foot beach catamarans. Our St. Barth Properties Sotheby’s International Realty Sailing Team started three years ago, and we’ve watched this event grow from 35 entries to the maximum allowable 57 entries. This year the entry list was overfilled in just eight minutes after online entries were open! This is partially due to the quality of competition, but is undoubtedly due to the quality of St. Barth on and off the water. Some of my U.S. friends are, let me say, a little too spoiled by this regatta; it’s the only regatta they do every year! They just simply don’t feel the desire to sail anywhere else. I love sailing a bit more than that, but I see where they are coming from.

View from Villa Les Mouettes

View from Villa Les Mouettes

This year our Team was joined by more of the sport’s heavy hitters. There were multiple world champions, Olympic medalists and future Olympic hopefuls. I have many championships under my belt, but I’m also currently in the deep heat of an Olympic Campaign myself, so this year I teamed with our Canadian training Partner, Luke Ramsay, who actually went to The Games in 2012. As it turns out, our finish of 5th place of 57 wasn’t what we hoped for, but since we are a new team, we were happy with our competitiveness against the high level of competition. We had some podium finishes along the way, but also some setbacks that saw us held up in the pack.

John Casey giving an interview during the St. Barth CataCup 2013

John Casey giving an interview during the St. Barth CataCup 2013

Unlike any event I’ve been to around the world, I’ve been drawn to this island. What is it about this place? Is it how everything is impeccably clean? Is it the perfect sailing conditions around stunning rock faces and picturesque beaches? Is it the wonderful view from almost anywhere on this mountainous island? Or is it the easy feeling I get from the locals who have now become some of my best friends? YES, it is all of it…the perfect combination to keep me yearning for my return every year.

Photo Credit Pierrick Contin

John Casey and Luke Ramsay sailing behind the rocks of St. Barth- Photo Credit Pierrick Contin

We were also lucky enough to enjoy the 25-year anniversary party this month where I saw how far St. Barth Properties has come. We really enjoyed their Beaujolais Nouveau party too. I’m so proud to be part of the Team!

-John Casey-

Peg with Luke Ramsay (L) and John Casey (R) at our St. Barth Properties Beaujolais Nouveau party November 20, 2013

Peg with Luke Ramsay (L) and John Casey (R) at our St. Barth Properties Beaujolais Nouveau party November 20, 2013

Wake Me Up When September Comes

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

Now is the Time to Plan your St. Barth Vacation!

I hope that your summer went well and that you had time to relax a bit. Per usual I spent my summer on Cape Cod working remotely with both my US office and my St. Barth office. The bulk of my time was spent preparing and editing our new Live Your Dream® catalogue. It just went to press and I can’t wait for you to see the finished product – It is our 25th Anniversary edition! I will be unveiling it at our Annual Beachside Bash which this year is being held on November 14th at the gorgeous beachfront hotel Taïwana on beautiful Flamands Beach. I would really love to see you there. Of course the party is our treat in appreciation of you, our valued St. Barth Properties clients. Invitations will be sent out very soon, so if you have not booked your accommodation yet, now is the time to do so. Just email reservations@stbarth.com or better yet, pick up the phone and call 1-800-421-3396 (or +1-508-528-7727). We would be happy to chat with you about the Bash and help you plan your St. Barth trip around it.

Live Your Dream Catalogue

The 25th Anniversary Edition of Our Live Your Dream Catalogue is Being Printed in France

If those November dates don’t work for you, now that the kids are back in school and the summer is winding down, it is time to think seriously about booking your fall or winter vacation to St. Barth. While the island might be in its annual hibernation period, it is not too early to make your reservation. Right now and until December 14th, it’s Value Season; many people take advantage of the extra savings that traveling during this period of time affords them. Have a look at our Specials Page to see what villas offer even more bang for your buck. Tradewind Aviation resumes their regularly scheduled roundtrip flights directly to St. Barth from San Juan, St. Thomas and Antigua on October 18th 2013. We are at-the-ready to get those seats booked for you and coordinate the dates to coincide with your villa or hotel reservation.

St Barth

Would you rather be here or at home buttoning up your overcoat?

If you are thinking of spending the Christmas/New Year’s holidays in St. Barth, many clients have the jump on you; their villa and/or hotel stays as well as their airline and car rental reservations are securely in place. For your convenience we have a direct link to our holiday availability on-line. It is really important to reserve now while we can still offer several villa options, obtain rental cars for you and assist you with the inter-island flights.

My husband Steve and I will be back on the island fulltime by then. We really enjoy the festivities and for the second Christmas in a row, my son, Mark Smyth (the dentist) and his family will be celebrating Christmas in St. Barth with us. Just as we do, you will love taking an evening stroll along the quai to marvel at the wondrous yachts docked along Gustavia Harbor; it’s a must. And, of course window shopping soon brings you into the gorgeously decorated boutiques to have a look; eventually you end up purchasing that perfect gift for yourself and/or for someone special.

Yachts in Gustavia Harbor

A favorite before or after dinner pastime: Walking along the quai in Gustavia to marvel at the yachts

Drop into the Baz Bar after dinner and you just might catch Jimmy Buffet picking up a guitar and singing a few songs with the band that is featured there at that time. Where to dine Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day? Our concierges Julia and Magda will give you the inside scoop as soon as the proposed menus are received. Would you like an in-villa massage? Do you need a babysitter? What about a day trip to Colombier Beach or a sunset cruise? We will happily set that all up for you.

Baz Bar.

Look who made an impromptu appearance while I was at the Baz Bar. You too can sing along with Jimmy.

Give us a call and Live Your Dream®