Posts Tagged ‘Villa K’

A Concierge’s Perspective of St. Barth from St Barth Properties’ USA Concierge Julia Hurd

Thursday, August 8th, 2019

I hope that your summer is going well, and you are dreaming of your next trip to St. Barth. The island has finally received some much-needed rain and is greening up nicely. Today’s blog is written by our USA office’s very friendly and well-informed Concierge Julia Hurd who has been with St. Barth Properties since 2007. Julia along with Villa Rental and Hotel Specialist Allegra Pawlowski went to St. Barth together with different missions in mind. While Allegra was busy inspecting villas and hotels, Julia was busy visiting all of our partners so that she can enhance your stay while you are vacationing in St. Barth. Julia is also in charge of making restaurant reservations for you before you travel; Allegra needs to try them, too, so they happily dined their way through the trip.

Happy Reading!

Peg

Julia Hurd

St. Barth Properties Concierge Julia Hurd’s May 2019 Trip Report

Another trip under my belt, and what an amazing trip I had. I traveled with Allegra Pawlowski, one of our St. Barth Villa Specialists, and she makes any trip interesting and fun. We were scheduled to fly—out of Puerto Rico —with Tradewind Aviation and spent our first night in San Juan at the Serafina Beach Hotel. We are pleased to represent the Serafina—a boutique property with a cool vibe— and feel it’s just perfect for a planned pre or post night stay in conjunction with a St. Barth vacation. And it’s a real haven for anyone who has just missed their flight. You can read more about the Serafina in Allegra’s guest blog.

That evening we walked around Old San Juan, which I love, and came upon an amazing tree. It reminded me of the Tree of Life, so I took a photo.

The Tree of Life in San Juan

Once I arrived on St. Barth, I exhaled. I knew I was in for a great week.

Our favorite greeter Romain met us at the St. Barth Airport and escorted us to Villa Fleur de Cactus, a stunning 3 bedroom villa in Lurin. We loved it.

On Sunday, our colleague St. Barth Properties’ island concierge Aurélie and her children joined us for a feet-in-the-sand lunch at Lil Rock on St. Jean Beach. New this past season, it’s very popular. I was so happy to meet Aurélie’s children— her daughter Gabriella and son Alexis— and we tried flying a kite on the beach. Such fun!

Here I am on St. Jean Beach

I love to meet new people, and on this trip, I really enjoyed getting to know Dom from Jet Ski Racing in Gustavia. He was kind enough to offer Aurélie and me an island tour on Jet Skis. What a blast! I was in the rear and going a bit slower than Aurélie and our guide, but I still had a great time. Sorry no photo on that one, I was too busy driving.

Dom from Jet Ski Racing and I just before the ride.

Contact me to arrange a great island tour.

The week with Aurélie went by so fast, in addition to Lil’ Rock, we lunched at Santa Fe, Le Toiny Beach Club and Nikki Beach. And, we had a yummy breakfast at the Hotel Manapany. Our dinner at Maya’s was amazing—compliments to the chef—and the service was outstanding. We dined at La Guérite and gave it high marks. Despite a week full of eating fabulous food, I still had to go to fishCorner to have their Lemon Tart, my all-time favorite island dessert. I had been dreaming about it since my last visit a year ago. And it was soooo good.

Nikki Beach is such a great spot for lunch. I will happily make the reservation for you.

The Breakfast Buffet at the Manapany Buffet has lots or delicious selections.

The Lemon Tart at fishCorner is my favorite dessert.

Often clients will ask me if there is an organic store. Well there certainly is, and I went to visit. It is called La Vie Claire St. Barth and it is located in Anse des Cayes. It is an Organic Store that sells everything from baby and adult items, diapers, all baby foods, nuts, flour, juices, fruit, wide variety of items. All organic products for the family who is looking for more Organic – Very nice!

La Vie Claire St. Barth

More items at La Vie Claire St. Barth

La Vie Claire

Later in the week, Allegra and I moved to beautiful Villa K, located in Anse des Cayes. There’s an abundance of outdoor living space and it is lovely to sit there and listen to the sound of the surf.

We loved the evening ambience at Villa K.

Aurélie said she arranged a surprise—I had no idea what to expect. We were relaxing at Villa K, when a tall man walked in. He introduced himself as Grégoire and set up two massage tables. He provides sound(s) nature-type sounds like surf and/or “plays” or gongs these different type bowls – usually Tibetan – and brings on deep meditation. He told us to lay on our backs, placed differently shaped bowls on top our bodies and led us through a sound meditation. I closed my eyes and saw the clear blue ocean. I really was in “another place.” Later, Aurelie informed me I woke her up with my snoring. Oh well.

Sound Healing by Grégoire

I have to say, if you need to relax, from a stressful life or job, this is something you must try. Contact me to arrange this unique experience.

I also enjoyed an in-villa massage courtesy of Ivana, a skilled a therapist from Venus Institute. Why not plan an in-villa massage on your next St. Barth visit. Please contact me at juliahurd@stbarth.com.

We arranged a staff afternoon catamaran trip with Top Loc on the Wayayai. Captain Renaud took the helm. Lilian, Laura, Aurélie and Allegra and I had a fun time snorkeling and saw gorgeous fish, turtles and stingrays. It was one of the week’s highlights.

Julia, Aurélie and Captain Renaud of Top Loc

The Top Loc catamaran approaches undeveloped and gorgeous Colombier Beach.

I’ve been working with a personal trainer Geoffery—our clients love him— but we had not personally met. I caught up with him at the stadium and talked about the training he offers, cardio, running, hiking, walking and water fitness. He also shared his own dream— to run the Boston Marathon. Geoffrey can meet clients at their villas or anywhere on the island. He makes a great running partner!

I will be happy to arrange personal training sessions for you with Fitness Trainer Geoffrey.

Our week ended with a staff dinner at Villa K. The talented Chef XO Christophe did the honors. I adore Christophe and his staff. And the food, as always was beyond delicious.

We all enjoyed a gourmet candlelight dinner prepared by Chef XO at Villa K. I’ll be happy to arrange one for you, too.

Rack of lamb, morels mushrooms juice, small glazed carrots & truffle oil mashed potatoes! At Villa K

I must say my island visits are one of my favorite parts of the job. Spending time with our island staff, especially face-to-face time with my “counterpart” Aurélie is special. I consider them all family.

I am already looking forward to my next visit and to finding more adventures and experiences for our clients. A Dream Vacation is waiting!

I always enjoy the view of Gustavia Harbor just outside of our Barth Properties Sotheby’s International Realty office.

Allegra Pawlowski – St. Barth Trip Report May 2019 What’s happening on St. Barth

Thursday, July 11th, 2019

Our wonderful St Barth Hotel and Villa Specialist, Allegra Pawlowski shares her St. Barth experience with you today. She has lots of good information about places to stay, things to do and where she dined.

Happy reading!

Sunny regards,

Peg

Allegra Pawlowski

I always look forward to my spring inspection trip as I usually get to travel with Julia Hurd, our US-based concierge. This year, on the way to St Barth, we planned an overnight stop in Puerto Rico to test out a new hotel on Condado Beach, the Serafina Beach Hotel. This made our travel day so easy – a direct flight from Boston to San Juan and jump in a taxi to the hotel.

Since neither of us had ever spent any time in San Juan before, we checked into our room (oohed and ahhed over the fabulous sea view) and then took an Uber to Old San Juan to explore that part of the city. What a treat! I loved this part of our stay here – we stumbled on a crafts fair at the fort, watched some traditional performances and then continued our exploring.

Charming Old San Juan

Parasols in San Juan

Starving, we found a nice spot called Rosa de Triana to get some tapas, located on a beautiful park. We overordered and enjoyed having the place to ourselves. Stuffed, we continued wandering the cobblestoned streets and then late in the afternoon, returned to the hotel to rest a bit before enjoying our dinner outside at the hotel’s restaurant, Amare.

Serafina hotel San Juan at night

This is a great hotel to split up your trip to St Barth, especially if you are traveling from the West Coast of the US. It is a short taxi ride from the airport and is located in an area with many options for dining and some shopping. The views from here are gorgeous to wake up to as the waves crash on the beach below the hotel. They also make a yummy Pina Colada. Please let us know if you would like to try this hotel as we will be happy to help secure it for you.

Good Morning, San Juan

The next morning, we returned to the airport for our scheduled Tradewind flight to the island on one of their 8 seat Pilatus air-conditioned aircraft. Besides flying privately, this is truly the best way to get to the island. It was a clear day and I love looking out the window to see all of the Virgin Islands as we fly over them as we approach the legendary landing on St. Barth, which is always thrilling. Upon landing, we were greeted by Romain, our wonderful and always welcoming team member who escorted us through getting our car rental and then we proceeded to our home for the next few nights. We had a nice surprise with the car – instead of getting what I usually prefer, a Terios, we got a bright orange mini cooper convertible for the week. I am now dreaming about this for my next car at home 😊. It really was a treat to explore for the week with the mini! However, some villas have accesses where the mini won’t work because it sits too low on the road. We will let you know if your villa qualifies when it is time to book your car.

Home for the first three nights was Fleur de Cactus, located in Lurin. It is a totally air conditioned 3 bedroom villa facing the sunset. What a spot! There are two bedrooms and a sitting area on the entry level and then an interior staircase to the lower level where you find the kitchen, living room, dining area and another bedroom, all facing that view! We loved this for the ease of getting to work in the morning in Gustavia and then getting to finish the day there taking in the view. From here, it is a VERY easy drive into town, Gouverneur Beach or one of our favorites, Santa Fe for dinner! We also have some other villas in close proximity, if your group is larger than 6 people and need other properties in the same area.

I love the bar that is inside the pool at Fleur de Cactus.

On the weekend, we visited the new addition to St. Jean beach, L’il Rock Beach Bar/restaurant. We enjoyed the beach with their lounge chairs and lunch with some members of our team on Sunday. The island’s famous, Soley performed while we ate and enjoyed the day lazing on the beach.

L’il Rock sits on St. Jean Beach.

Monday morning meant the start of the work week and after getting Julia set up with her car, I was off to the office to get my marching orders for the day. Luckily, we were to start a bit slowly. During these twice a year trips, I always have a long list of villas I want to revisit or see for the first time. On this trip I really wanted to visit our cottages, DahouëtVal André and Cap Fréhal and in the Sable d’Or area of St. Jean as well as the boutique hotel, Les Îlets de la Plage next door.

Surprisingly, I had actually never been on this side of the runway before and instantly felt transported in time to “old St. Barth” once you pass through the gate. These properties are all equipped with modern conveniences but have maintained the island charm which keeps people coming back to this island year after year. The Sable d’Or cottages are situated at the waters edge, but do not have a beach. To access the sandy beach, you will have to walk down the road a bit, back towards the runway, but there is water access from the cottages (remember your water shoes!).There is also a tennis court included with the cottages if you feel up to an early morning workout. The nearby hotel, Les Îlets de la Plage also has a step back in time feeling with comfortable rooms and cottages with or without sea views. They also have a hotel pool and are a short walk to the sandy area of St. Jean beach.

During the week, I crisscrossed the island seeing new properties and revisiting others for which I needed a refresher. Some standouts were Wish and D’zir, located in Colombier (think – sunset views over the mouth of the harbor and a short walk to Les Bananiers or the bakery, La Petite Colombe), Iris with its new sleek look,  modern feel and fun new TVs, Dei Sogni– my ideal beach house on the sand of Lorient beach (utter perfection in my estimation), Villion located high up in Petite Saline for its privacy, value and views, Au Paille en Queue and Anse Etoilée located in St. Jean with nice views and very bright, fresh feeling interiors (including morning delivery of fresh French pastries included with a 7 night stay), Beach House for the ability to walk right out your door and be on the sand in St Jean, Lumière for its fantastic renovation and views.

The view from Villa D’Zir took my breath away.

Dei Sogni is for Lorient Beach lovers.

The view from Villa Villion is gorgeous.

Imagine you are staying at Beach House – Just open the gate and jump in the water on St. Jean Beach.

On these trips, I aim to test out some of the restaurants on the island and traveling with our concierges, we certainly do. Some of the spots we tried this visit included Santa Fe (for lunch), Nikki Beach, Victoria, La Guérite (for the last night of the season), fishCorner (we had to try the dreamy lemon meringue tart again), Le Toiny (for lunch at their beach club), JoJo Burger (always a great burger) and Maya’s. I had not been to Maya’s in a few years and was very pleased to see nothing has changed and their cooking and presentation remain reliable and simply delicious. The service at Maya’s is superb and of course that view and breeze off of the water are welcome after a hot day racing around the island on visits.

Lunch at the Santa Fe never disappoints.

No trip to St. Barth is complete until I have devoured the lemon meringue tart at FishCorner

Lunch at Nikki beach

Our second home for the week was Villa K, located in Anse des Cayes. As with most areas on the island at this time, there was construction here during the day, but when it stopped, I loved hearing the waves crash at the end of our sandy path. I imagined having our concierge arrange a massage at the villa and to set it up near the path at the end of the day. This would be a perfect place, as it gets dark, to really start the relaxation part of vacation. Note to self……… 😊

One day during the week, we took an afternoon off to enjoy a catamaran excursion with our colleagues in the office on the island. We sailed to Colombier on “Wayayaï” with Top Loc and our captain. There, we snorkeled and followed turtles and sting rays. It was truly a perfect afternoon on the water.

We experienced a catamaran day, just like our clients!

At Villa K, I won the coin toss on the master suite. It is HUGE with two separate lounging areas with gorgeous sea views and a very luxurious bathroom with separate steam shower and tub. This villa is very well set up for an extended family traveling with teenagers or a nanny. We had our last night dinner with the on-island office at Villa K and dined outside while enjoying the incredible talents of one of our favorite chefs, Christophe.

Julia and Chef Christophe adore each other.

I am looking forward to the next visit in November to reconnect with our team on the island and see all the new properties at that time, as there will be much more to see!

Why does the staff at St. Barth Properties keep going to St. Barth twice a year?

Tuesday, June 4th, 2019

It’s that time of year. High Season is over, and St. Barth is quieter which means it’s the period when our staff makes one of their bi-annual inspection trips to St Barth. (They will go again in November). They do this because they love to take in the vibe again and to be able to give you the best advice on where to stay when you go. I could call it taking another course in continuing ed.

Today’s Guest Blog in written by bilingual Villa and Hotel Specialist, Anne-Cécile Bedford who has been a member of the St. Barth Properties team since 1999!

Anne-Cécile’s St. Barth May 2019 Trip Report

Traveling to St Barth during the month of May is my favorite time of year. The rush of the high season is over, the weather is beautiful and just right, and the island’s pace slows down a bit, which allows me to visit many properties that are on my radar. As always, flying to Puerto Rico from Boston is an easy 4 hour flight with a smooth connection on Tradewind directly to St Barth from San Juan.

I arrived on St Barth on a late Saturday afternoon and settled down at the 5-star Le Barthélemy Hotel & Spa, just in time to catch the end of a beautiful sunny day. This elegant and sophisticated hotel sits directly on the beach at Grand Cul de Sac, facing the blue colors of the lagoon. My room, Le Barth Ocean was located on the second level of the hotel, facing both the infinity pool and the ocean with a wonderful terrace to enjoy the view and relax. The room is in perfect harmony with the ocean theme and the decor is stylish and inviting. I enjoyed the complimentary Hermes products and their small welcome gift.

The view from my Le Barth Ocean room at Le Barthélemy Hotel & Spa was stunning.

Here is the view from my Le Barth Ocean room at night.

On Sunday, I woke up and experienced a fantastic breakfast buffet at the hotel restaurant before relaxing by the pool and taking a dip in the lagoon. Their new beach restaurant Aux Amis Plage, feet in the sand, is a wonderful place to enjoy a tasty lunch while watching a fashion show. I had the Tuna Takaki salad with a detox cocktail for the glow. Their unique new rooftop bar called “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” awaits you with a large list of delicious cocktails. They have a DJ playing from Monday to Sunday starting at 5pm.

Here I am sitting in the “Bird Cage” swing at Le Barthélemy Hotel & Spa.

I enjoyed the Tuna Takaki salad for lunch at Le Barthélemy Hotel & Spa.

As a guest of St Barth Properties staying in one of our private villas, you can take advantage of our 5-star perks and privileges at Le Barthélemy hotel when booking a breakfast or lunch. Once you are on the island, contact our local concierge, Aurélie Janvier who will set you up for a unique experience.

On Monday, I said goodbye to Le Barthélemy and moved to a romantic little 1 bedroom, hillside in Colombier called Léana. The views from the villa looking down to Flamands beach are spectacular! The villa has kept the original St Barth architecture and is made up of 3 independent cottages. The first main cottage has a modern kitchen and living room that opens to a terrace facing the view and pool. The bedroom that was just refurbished in a second cottage by the pool opens up to its own private terrace where you can enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning gazing at the pretty view. The third cottage houses a separate bathroom that has a shower with a view! Villa Léana is only a 3 minute drive to the Colombier bakery for morning pastries and coffee. The beaches and shopping are within a 10 minute drive. This is a great spot for honeymooners and for cat lovers. For those looking for a good exercise experience and exploring the island by foot, you can walk from Léana to the Colombier observation point and admire the breathtaking views of the ocean and nearby island. From there, follow the direction to get to Colombier beach and hike down. It is quite steep and challenging on the way back up, so be prepared and bring some water with you. (The other path to Colombier begins after Flamands beach and is less challenging, but still a nice 20 minute hike. You can also go from Gustavia by catamaran, which we can arrange for you.

I loved the view overlooking Flamands Beach from Villa Léana.

My week on St Barth went by pretty quickly as I had many new villas to discover. Some of my favorite were the following:

Villa Del Sogni, a 6 bedroom villa, located directly on the beach of Lorient will sweep you away from the technical world as soon as you enter this property. The name translates to “of dream” and one can really live the dream staying in this private gem, feet in the sand and surrounded by lush tropical foliage. Each bedroom is named after the island beaches and surrounds the pretty pool. There is ample living space and a gazebo and BBQ by the beach. A heated jacuzzi and outdoor showers in the sand are a plus at this bohemian-style villa.

Picture yourself relaxing in the shade, with a cocktail in hand, at Villa Dei Sogni.

Villa Edunia, located hillside in Lurin, is a 4 bedroom villa fully air conditioned, offering splendid views and sunset. It is decorated in a chic, modern style and the heated infinity pool is delightful. This is the perfect place for couples or a family wanting to be close to Gustavia harbor and Gouverneur beach. The villa gets its name from the Brazilian artist Eduardo Kac who had the genius idea to create a flower genetically modified by incorporating his gene to the plant. The Edunia flower shows the artist DNA in the red veins of the flower.

Villa Acai is a fantastic 3 bedroom (2.5 bath) property overlooking the bay of Flamand and its beach. For those looking for proximity to the beach, it is a 5 minute walk down to one of the most beautiful beach on the island (my favorite) and the famous 5-Star Cheval Blanc hotel. The villa is built on 3 levels and is fully air conditioned. The lovely heated pool sits on the lowest level, while the bedrooms are on the middle level and the main living area is on the top level. This property can be rented in combination with villa Camalie next door to make 6 bedrooms total. This is the perfect set up for families or friends traveling together.

Villa Acai – What a view!

Villa Esprit de Roche in Colombier is perfect for those looking for privacy and quietness. The villa is composed of 3 bedrooms housed in separate pavilions with view of the ocean from every room. The pretty pool sits on a lower level with 43 steps from the main level of the villa. Sunset lovers will enjoy this completely renovated property. It is an easy access from the main road and there is ample parking.

Amongst the villas I already knew, but that I needed to see because of renovation or changes, I enjoyed touring Villa Arc en Ciel in Anse des Lézards, Villa K in Anse des Cayes, Villa Kuban in Colombier and, Villa Moulin on St Jean beach.

I loved looking out the living room window at Villa Arc en Ciel.

The path to Anse de Cayes beach and the 5-star Hotel Manapany is just beyond the pool at Villa K.

Villa Lili, located high up in St Jean, was my coup de coeur. You enter the villa thru a wooden door to find yourself by a delightful infinity pool and a gorgeous view! This is the perfect romantic spot for honeymooners. I like the gazebo on the side of the villa to have dinner and the small fitness room below. Villa Bonbonnière in Pt Milou is another sweet honeymoon villa that I highly recommend.

St Barth is also a culinary experience! Amongst the places I ate, I recommend the Pearl Beach hotel’s beach front restaurant; very Romantic for a candlelight dinner by the ocean. Dinners chez Eddy’s are always fantastic, especially when Eddy comes around with a smile and sits with you at the end of dinner for a shot of Rhum.

Eddy’s Ghetto is always a favorite dinner spot; it has such a warm and welcoming ambience.

For a casual night on the harbor, if you are keen on Tapas, the new La Cantina is a fun and loud spot to try small plates of cold cuts. Cheeses and pâtés. This is where I spent an evening with my local team. It was a fun time and good to catch up on our lives outside the office.

I had a fun evening at La Cantina with Lilian, Anne-Laure, Laura and 2 friends of theirs.

Restaurant Bagatelle is always the place to experience a tasteful dinner. They are running a special gastronomic dinner every Tuesday (5 new courses) with wine pairing for 89 euros. A true culinary experience! If you feel like chilling at your villa one night and order pizza, Les Bananiers in Colombier is the place to order. The Italian Pizzaiolo makes the best pizzas on island. I also enjoy casual places for lunch such as JoJo burger, Le Bouchon, La Crêperie and L’Isoletta.

I was fortunate to be on St. Barth when one of my very favorite longtime clients was staying in Villa Nirvana. Here we are dining at Les Bananiers.

It is still time to book your next dream villa on St Barth for the summer. Check our special offers on our web site at https://www.stbarth.com/villas/rental-villas-current-specials-packages. I look forward to helping you find the perfect place.

Are You Thinking of Renting a Villa in the Caribbean?

Friday, August 12th, 2011

Caribbean Travel and Life’ Magazine’s
August/September 2011 Issue Features a Big Spread:

Villa Vacations Made Simple

Caribbean Travel and Life Magazine’s August/September issue features an extensive article on villa vacations and answers many questions people may have if they have never rented a villa before.

I am pleased as Ti Punch that one of our villas (Villa Palm Beach on Lorient Bay) is pictured on the cover!

CTLcover

Caribbean Travel and Life cover featuring Villa Palm Beach

***READ PDF OF ARTICLE***

Turn to page 54 to see a different angle and then page 56 to see the pool at Villa K. Page 57 shows the manager of Villa Gem-Palm Springs serving continental breakfast. It is included with the villa rental because Gem-Palm Springs is one of the villas in our Grand Cru Collection. I am proud to say that on page 58, in addition to the picture of the awesome rain shower at Villa Palm Beach, there is a “From the Expert” sidebar that features quotes from, guess who? Me! There are other quotes from several of my colleagues who rent villas on their own special island. (Yes, I admit I am very prejudiced towards St. Barth. Who wouldn’t be?)

Villa K, page 56

Villa K, page 56
Zach Stovall, photographer

Page 58: Rain shower at Villa Palm Beach and “From the Expert” sidebar

Page 58: Rain shower at Villa Palm Beach and “From the Expert” sidebar

The article demonstrates just how many different services villa guests can choose to have in the privacy of their own home. Turn to page 59…Yoga and/or Pilates anyone? Perhaps a massage? (Page 65) Try it poolside at Villa Gem-Palm Springs. See one of the villa’s fabulous 4 bedrooms on page 60 and drool at the boulangerie’s baguettes and pastries on page 61. Another one of our Grand Cru villas, Mer Soleil scored a double page (62-63) and you can see why.

Villa Mer Soleil

Villa Mer Soleil pages 62-63
Zach Stovall, photographer

Then we have a very handsome young man sitting at the bar at Villa Gem-Palm Springs on page 64. He is Jean-Claude Dufour and an outstanding chef whom we often hire for our guests who choose to dine in. He created a menu for our staff’s dinner party at Gem Palm Springs (What a view!). I hope that you can get a copy at your local newsstand or grocery store and that you do try a villa vacation next time.

Visit the Caribbean Travel and Life website or subscribe to the magazine.

page 64

Jean-Claude Dufour on page 64

Photographs by Zach Stovall, photographer