Posts Tagged ‘St. Barth Commuter’

Ever Wonder Why Our St Barth Properties-USA Concierge Knows How to Personalize and Enhance Your St Barth Vacation Experience?

Tuesday, July 24th, 2018

Today’s blog is written by our amazing SBP-USA office concierge, Julia Hurd who has been with the Company since 2007. For those of you who have traveled with us in the past, you know how perfectly Julia assists you with any extra service you may desire. For those of you who have yet to book their St. Barth vacation with St. Barth Properties, you are in for a treat. Here is how Julia keeps on top of things for you. Enjoy.

Sunny regards,
Peg

Julia’s Trip Report St. Barth May 2018

It has been a year and a hurricane since I have been to the island of St. Barth, so I was very excited to see how the island and my colleagues have been doing along with the friends I have made since I have been with St. Barth Properties. I set off from Boston on a JetBlue direct flight into San Juan with my coworker Allegra Pawlowski, a St. Barth Properties Villa and Hotel Specialist. Now, here is the funny part, anyone who knows me is very aware of my fear of flying, so I have never in the 11 years of working as the St. Barth concierge ever flown on Tradewind Aviation. Yes folks, that is correct I always fly into SXM and take Winair, St. Barth Commuter or one of the ferries, Voyager or Great Bay Express, The ferry being my first choice.

Well, after a stern talking to myself, I decided I would give it a try. We arrived into San Juan and we were met by a Tradewind Aviation VIP Service agent who took us right to the Tradewind Aviation lounge to relax, have a cold drink and snack while the agent retrieved our bags and got us both checked in – what a breeze. I highly recommend the additional cost of $150.00 for this service; there is no additional charge if you are a party of one or eight.

I met Tom, one of the Tradewind Aviation pilots, in their VIP Lounge.

Once the plane was ready for takeoff, they let me board first and pick a seat I felt comfortable in. Tom, one of the pilots, was so kind and often looked back to make sure I was ok. I have to be honest I am mad it took me this long to fly Tradewind Aviation; it was such a smooth flight on the aircraft, a Pilatus PC-12, an 8 seater providing two pilots, a pressurized cabin, AC, cold drinks and snacks. I was NOT going to look out the window on my inaugural flight, so I got to watch 2 episodes of a 30 min show on my iPad. One hour later I was in St. Barth not even realizing we had landed. Two thumbs up to the crew and Tradewind Aviation for making this the best first-time experience ever.

We arrived and went to our SBP booth where we picked up our rental cars at Gumbs Car Rentals. We said hello to Odile who kindly lets us share the booth with her; Our greeter Romain was there to escort us to our villa L’Adrech and treated us just as if we were clients of SBP. Allegra will tell you all about this gorgeous villa in Peg’s next Guest Blog detailing her trip report.

The first night we ate at Les Bananiers; Aurélie Janvier, our St. Barth office Concierge, and Laura Commaret our St. Barth office Villa Rental Specialist, surprised us by walking in. We all had dinner together; it was great fun catching up.

I love working with St. Barth Properties-St. Barth Concierge Aurélie Janvier.

The Royal Wedding happened to be taking place that Saturday, May 19th. I thought it would be fun to arrange a Chef Lunch at the villa for our island staff along with some Tiara’s and Top Hats. We had Pascal, of Pascal Cook, one of the wonderful chefs we use on-island, prepare a Royal Feast.

Royal Lunch at Villa L’Adrech L to R- Laura, Allegra, Pascale, Me-Julia, Nadine, Romain and Benoit.

Pascal the Chef

I was lucky to be able to spend time with Aurélie our island Concierge, as we speak daily and work very closely together. It was wonderful to be able to spend every day doing new things and dining out at all the great restaurants that St. Barth has to offer.

We dined at:

fishCorner is only open for lunch; they sell freshly-caught fish daily from 8:30am to 12:00pm then again from 3:30pm to 6:00pm; they are open 12:00pm to 3:00pm for lunch and are located in Gustavia in the alley by the Bar de L’ Oubli. I had the Fish and Chips and the most amazing Lemon Meringue Pie for dessert. I went back twice just for the pie. I even contacted the pastry chef Margaux Bellorgey and asked if I could have the recipe. NO SUCH LUCK, I will have to meet her next time; maybe she will allow me to be her assistant and we can make it together.

fishCorner Fish n Chips

The Lemon Pie at fishCorner is out of this world.

L’Esprit, located in Saline, Jean Claude DuFour is the owner and chef, such a great meal wonderful to see him and his staff. Ociela located in Gustavia has a wonderful view; it just so happened that Soley the musician was singing there that evening, which was a wonderful treat. Bagatelle located in Gustavia -always a wonderful time; 25 Quarter was also a great spot; we visited the new Rum Room after dinner and had a rum tasting, it was amazing. So many rums from all over the world.

25 Quarter’s fantastic Rum Room.

L’Isoletta was a restaurant I have never been able to fit into my schedule but this trip Aurélie and I made a point to have lunch; we had pizza, a salad, dessert and coffee for 20 euro pp – can’t beat that price. It was delish. Located on the upper road in Gustavia.

Aurélie devoured the pizza combo at L’Isoletta.

My Berry Ricotta dessert at L’Isoletta was very good.

We also were able to spend a day at the hotel Manapany pool and have a wonderful lunch; we toured the Spa and some suites at the hotel. What a tough job I have.

The Manapany is on Anse des Cayes Beach.

You can have lunch by Manapany’s main pool or use the adults-only pool at their spa.

Tamarin located in Saline – what a great restaurant. I love Heart Rocks and collect them in my travels, I simply fell in love with the one in the lily pond. I wish it fit in my luggage. The dinner was fantastic, everyone was happy and the tables where full. What a delightful night.

Here is Tamarin’s heart rock in one their lily ponds.

Allegra and I loved dining at the Tamarin.

I also wanted to try the St. Barth Properties Beach Picnic and some of the other activities that we offer, so we arranged a Beach Picnic with Chef XO Christophe and a lesson with Cyril Reymann to try the Seabobs. The St. Barth Properties Beach Picnic lunch was set up on Shell Beach as our lesson was there. The food from Christophe was outstanding as always, it was a pleasure to see him and one of his helpers. I highly recommend the SBP Beach Picnic; simply contact me and I will arrange everything for you. It was a great day. The Seabob was so much fun. You must try it!

Try the St, Barth Properties Beach Picnic next time you go to St. Barth.

While we were picnicing on Shell Beach, Allegra and I had a blast learning how to swim with the Seabob.

One item on my bucket list was to have a massage at a villa and boy oh boy was I one lucky and happy lady. It seems being a concierge can be stressful at times, believe it or not. So what other choice did I have but to have a massage? Allegra and I moved to the beautiful and very private Villa Le Diamant in St. Jean. (All of us at SBP love to experience the Villa Lifestyle just the way you do so that we can give you first-hand knowledge of the accommodation.) Nadine from Venus Institute set up her table poolside and within minutes I was in heaven. I can’t think of anything better to arrange for you than a fabulous massage to help you relax.

Nadine from Venus Spa came to our Villa Diamant to give me an excellent in-villa massage.

Nadine was fantastic. Venus Institute is a wonderful Spa in Gustavia that has many services from hair, makeup, mani, pedi, massages and so many more services, simply contact me at juliahurd@stbarth.com and I will give you all the details. In-villa or at the spa can be arranged.

I could not get over how wonderful the island looked and how green and beautiful it was. Other than a few obvious observations (such as the fronds on the palm trees not being 100% back), you would never think a category 5 hurricane visited. The people of St. Barth have worked so hard and are so grateful to bring the island back to its splendor.

St. Barth has so many coiorful flowers.

Another activity that Aurelie and I tried was Janzu, with Body and Soul. We met Nanda at the far end of smaller side of St. Jean Beach. Janzu is a type of water massage; it is practiced in the pool or ocean (but your villa pool can’t be too deep). It induces a state of deep relaxation, allowing energy blockages to emerge. Nanda places a nose water clip and tells you to breath out of your mouth, she listens to your breathing and tells you to close your eyes. The session was not only relaxing and calming, it was very emotional at the end; both of us found ourselves moved to tears, in a good way. Thank you, Nanda at Body and Soul. I still feel your energy. For more details contact me at juliahurd@stbarth.com.

Nanda and I are on the quieter side of St. Jean beach for Allegra’s and my Jenzu experience.

Right after Hurricane Irma hit St. Barth, the citizens began cleaning the island of debris. Each weekend a different spot is chosen. Trash bags and gloves are provided. Allegra and I volunteered to pick up trash along the roads of Corossol on a Sunday morning along with our island office; we did a great job. The more hands the better.

Benoit, Aurélie, Laura, Alllegra and I went to Corossol to join in the cleanup on Trash Day.

I can’t get over how fast the week went by, it was great to see everyone and see how well the island is doing. I am thankful to all the wonderful people and places I visited while I was there. It is one amazing island. Thank you to everyone in St. Barth for making my work week so enjoyable, it is always sad to say goodbye. Thank you to my copilot Aurélie, you’re a great partner.

Aurélie bid us goodbye. We will be back very soon.

Getting to St. Barth

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

How do I get to St. Barth? What are my travel options?

You are a first timer (soon to be hooked on St. Barth and become a repeat guest). You say, “How do I get to St. Barth?” It’s fairly easy and worth the extra effort. You will agree with me once you are there. Even if you are a repeat client I think you will find this latest information useful.

The Experience

St. Barth’s oh-so-short runway has achieved a certain notoriety over the years but that’s part of the fun. Close your eyes for the landing if you’re a scaredy cat but if you at least take a peek we promise it will be a collectible travel experience; exciting, fun – and very safe. The 19-seater STOL (short takeoff and landing) Twin Otter is the largest plane that lands here and is one of the reasons this beautiful island remains unspoiled. You’ll never see a 747 bringing in the crowds.

Landing in St. Barth

Landing in St. Barth

You fly in over those gorgeous turquoise waters and then over that well-documented hill. You have arrived. Say Bonjour to the folks on St. Jean Beach as you step off the plane.

International Air

From the USA, the gateways to St. Barts are via St. Maarten (airport code: SXM) and San Juan (SJU). A connection can also be made from St. Thomas (STT). American Airlines (Now merged with the former US Airways), Delta, United, Spirit, Air Tran and Jet Blue fly to St. Maarten and San Juan. Air France flies from Paris to SXM and British Airways flies from the UK to Antigua (ANU) a few days a week.

Flight Connections

Via San Juan: The easiest way to connect to St Barth (SBH) is directly from San Juan (SJU) on Tradewind Aviation. (We are more than pleased to make these arrangements for you). The carrier offers scheduled service that is sold by the seat ($402 to $640 each way depending on the travel dates). Tradewind departs San Juan 3 times a day (early morning, early afternoon and late afternoon). Departures from St. Barth are in the morning, midafternoon and late afternoon. Slight changes occur depending on the time of year and the amount of daylight because St Barth’s airport Gustav III closes at dusk. Tradewind also offers private charters (up to 8 passengers from $3950 to $4950 each way to/from SJU).

Piliatus Landing

Piliatus Landing

In addition, Tradewind offers service from St. Thomas (STT) and Antigua (ANU). Tradewind’s planes are the beautiful Pilatus with two pilots, very comfortable leather seats, air conditioning, drinks and snacks. The flight takes about 55 minutes (gate to gate is about 1 hour and 10 minutes). The trip is shorter from St. Thomas.

In the Value Season their St. Barth Premium Scheduled Service from San Juan continues with more limited operations. Check with us as to the schedules. Tradewind’s counter in SJU is located in the Jet Blue terminal A and the airline offers a lounge area where you can wait comfortably until departure time. (Recommended airline connection times: 90 minutes in San Juan, 60 minutes in St Thomas)

VIP Service is available in San Juan and includes an escort and baggage transfer from the commercial airline to your Tradewind flight. Contact our concierge, juliahurd@stbarth.com for your Tradewind flights.

Via Sint Maarten: Many people connect to St Barth (SBH) through Sint Maarten (SXM). Jet Blue flies nonstop to St. Maarten daily from JFK and on Saturdays from Boston (in high season). Jet Blue also seasonally flies from San Juan to St Maarten.

Winair is the major inter-island carrier. The 12-15 minute flight costs about $156-$293 round trip per person (depending on availability). Allow 1½ to 2 hours to make the connection to St Barts. On the return, be sure to allow at least 2 hours in St. Maarten in order to make your connection home.

Winair landing

Winair Landing

Luggage: Winair Passengers with a through international joint fare E-ticket (a single ticket with one PNR code that includes the airline that is connecting to or from Winair) are considered to be “Interline Passengers” and can check their luggage all the way to their final destination as long as the required minimum connecting time between the 2 airlines is respected. These airlines include: United, Delta Air Lines, Air Caraïbes, Insel Air, Air France, Corsair, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic Airways, Dutch Antilles Express and Copa. Frequent flyer tickets do not apply to this service. Luggage limit is 23 kg/50 lbs. per passenger, so pack lightly. Winair is charging $25.00 for the first additional checked bag and $50 for a 3rd.

St. Barth Commuter offers several scheduled flights to/from Juliana Airport (SXM) on the Dutch side and a few others to/from the French side L’Espérance Airport (SFG) which is further away and requires a taxi ride in traffic. The tickets are 70 euros each way from either airport. We often arrange a private charter for our guests on St. Barth Commuter from SXM. The price is 900€ each way November 15 – March 15 and 800€ each way March 16 – November 14; the plane holds up to 7 passengers. An extra 100€ is charged each way per additional passenger – up to 9 passengers maximum (the capacity of the aircraft). For private charter arrangements contact juliahurd@stbarth.com. We continue to recommend that each passenger has a carry-on bag with enough clothing and supplies to get through at least 1 day as luggage has been known to arrive after its owners and sometimes not until the next day.

St. Barth Commuter landing

St. Barth Commuter Landing

Helicopter Transfers: A twin engine, AS355N helicopter can be arranged from Sint Maarten to St. Barth; one way cost is 1600 euros. The helicopter holds 5 passengers and 1 pilot. Baggage limitations are: 2 big suitcases 78x53x34 + 2 medium 68x45x30 + 1 carry-on size bag 52x34x24 with the possibility to fit additional backpacks. For 4 passengers, they can fit an additional big bag in front next to pilot. If you are one of our St. Barth Properties clients and want to learn more and reserve seats, please email our concierge juliahurd@stbarth.com or call Julia at + 1-508-570-4129 to make the arrangements.

Helicopter Transfers

Helicopter Transfers

Note: The airport in St. Barth closes at dusk

Ferry Connections

The Voyager is a slow Ferry (75-90 minutes from Marigot and 40 Minutes from Oyster Pond). Schedules are subject to change. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT THE SEAS BETWEEN ST. MAARTEN AND ST. BARTH CAN BE ROUGH. IF YOU ARE PRONE TO MOTION SICKNESS, WE RECOMMEND YOU AVOID THIS MANNER OF ARRIVAL. Website and phone number: (dialing from the U.S.) Voyager, Marigot Bay/Oyster Pond 011 590 590 87 10 68 (St. Martin)

Voyager Ferry

Voyager Ferry

The Great Bay Express is a faster ferry that travels from Bobby’s Marina in Dutch St Maarten to Gustavia in St. Barth. Crossing time is approximately 40 minutes.

Private boat transfers can also be arranged. Contact juliahurd@stbarth.com

We at St. Barth Properties take care of our clients from the planning stage of their dream vacation, all the way through to their departure from St Barth. Leaving paradise is a sad occasion but I am sure that by that time, you will be addicted as we all are, and return again and again. We will happily repeat the process.

How do I get to St. Barts? What are the entry requirements?

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

Here I am back in St Barth, lucky me! (Wish you were here). St. Barth Properties VP Tom Smyth, St. Barth Villa and Hotel Specialist Kathy Schlitzer and I arrived yesterday. We have a full calendar of hotel and villa inspection appointments on our schedules and I will report back.

On the trip down we talked about the questions that our clients often ask us and two of them are how to get to St. Barth as well as the entry requirements.

As I mentioned in a previous blog, one of the reasons that St. Barth remains so special is that it takes a little extra effort to get to this paradise. From the USA, the gateways to St. Barts are via St. Maarten (airport code: SXM) and San Juan (SJU). American Airlines, US Airways, Delta, United, Spirit, and Jet Blue fly to St. Maarten and San Juan.

The easiest way to connect to St. Barth (SBH) is directly from San Juan (SJU) on private charters with Tradewind Aviation (up to 8 passengers @$2995-$3955 each way), or Air America Caribbean (5 to 9 passengers beginning at $1950-$2500 each way). Tradewind also offers a scheduled charter service that is sold by the seat and is $420 to $520 (depending on travel dates) each way. (The 2011-2012 season began October 28, 2011 and ends May 6, 2012). The flight departs San Juan at 8:00 am and 3:00 pm daily with additional flights at 1:00pm and 4:00pm Thursday through Monday until Jan 31, 2012 (4:30 pm from Jan 31 to May 06, 2012). Departures from St. Barth are at 10:00 am and 5:30 pm daily with additional flights at 2:30pm Thursday through Monday.

Piliatus-Landing-SBH

Pilatus landing at SBH

Tradewind also offers service from St. Thomas (STT) Thursday through Monday at $420 per seat. The plane is very comfortable, with leather seats, air conditioning drinks and snacks. The flight takes about 1 hour and 20 minutes depending on the aircraft.

Air America Caribbean’s planes (not air-conditioned) hold 5-7 passengers and are $1950-$2500 each way for a private charter. St. Barth Commuter offers private charter flights on their caravan (not air-conditioned) year round for $2700 each way or via shared charter (on request) for $400 per seat.

Caravan landing at SBH

For confirmed hotel and villa clients of St. Barth Properties, airline charters can also be arranged by concierge@stbarth.com.

Many people connect to St Barth (SBH) through St. Maarten (SXM). As of November 17, 2011 Jet Blue offers service from San Juan to St. Maarten. The major inter-island carrier is Winair. The 12-15 minute flight costs about $156-$293 round trip per person (depending on availability). Allow 1½ to 2 hours to make the connection to St Barts. Be sure to allow at least 2 hrs in St. Maarten in order to make your connection home.

Winair-Plane

Winair plane

St. Barth Commuter offer several scheduled flights to/from Juliana Airport on the Dutch side and two others to/from the French side (70 euros each way). We often arrange a private charter on St. Barth Commuter for our guests. The cost is €800 euros each way and the plane holds up to 6 passengers. Air St Maarten, a nice alternative, puts together shared charters to/from St. Maarten and San Juan.

We continue to recommend that each passenger has a carry-on bag with enough clothing and supplies to get through at least 1 day as luggage has been known to arrive after its owners and sometimes not until the next day. Luggage limit is 23 kg/50 lbs per passenger, so pack lightly. Winair is charging $25.00 for the first additional checked bag and $50 for a 3rd. If you are using US Airways, you can book your flights all the way from your home city to SBH and you can check your bags all the way through (unless you are using frequent flier tickets). Once again be sure to have a carry-on with all of you first night’s needs. You may submit a request directly to Winair in St. Barth on line http://www.st-barths.com/winair/winair_intro_eng.html.

By Ferry: The Voyager is a slow Ferry (75-90 minutes from Marigot and 40 Minutes from Oyster Pond on the French side). Schedules are subject to change. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT THE SEAS BETWEEN ST. MAARTEN AND ST. BARTH CAN BE ROUGH. IF YOU ARE PRONE TO MOTION SICKNESS, WE RECOMMEND YOU AVOID THIS MANNER OF ARRIVAL. The new (December 2011) Voyager Dream Liner offers a first class seating section. The Voyager phone number: (dialing from the U.S.) Marigot Bay/Oyster Pond 011 590 590 87 10 68 (St. Martin).

Voyager Ferry

Voyager ferry

The Great Bay Express is a faster ferry that travels from Bobby’s Marina in Dutch St Maarten to Gustavia in St. Barth. Crossing time is approximately 40 minutes from/to Bobby’s Marina in Philipsburg to Gustavia. 011 599-542-0032 and the phone number from the US is: 1-347 568 0574.

st-barts-ferry-great-bay

Great Bay Express ferry

For confirmed hotel and villa clients of St. Barth Properties, private boat transfers and airline charters can be arranged for you. Please Contact: concierge@stbarth.com.

A valid passport is required for U.S., Canadian, Brazilians and EU National citizens, regardless of what others may tell you. All other nationalities MUST have visas. (This includes nannies and staff traveling with you, who must also have proper documentation or they will be sent back.) Even if you previously cleared immigration without incident, proper documentation is now necessary. For information on U.S. passports, go to the website: http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html. Remember that children’s passports expire every 5 years.

To book your hotel or villa in St Barth, contact reservations@stbarth.com.