Posts Tagged ‘Villa Nirvana’

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.

November in St. Barth – Trip Report by Connie Walsh

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

I am happily back on St. Barth and am based here for at least the next 5 months (poor me). Last month I was also here doing some villa inspections, spending time with friends and hosting our 25th Anniversary party celebrating the silver anniversary of when I founded St. Barth Properties. My colleague Connie Walsh was with me and I am pleased to share her trip report with you as a Guest Blog.

Connie Walsh’s Trip Report November 2013

Connie Walsh

Connie Walsh

One of the things I love best about the island of St. Barth is the charming small-town ordinary-ness of its daily life. It both belies and yet compliments the TMZ-like Jay Z & Beyoncé-ness which reaches its star-studded zenith over the Christmas and New Year holidays. But even then, residents, which include many whose families have called St. Barth home for generations, are out and about, stopping in at the post office, buying a baguette or grabbing a burger in Gustavia’s Le Select. And if they meet Mariah Carey popping out of a shop, Dave Letterman jogging the hills or are seated next to Hollywood’s latest starlet in a restaurant, it’s all in a St. Barth day.

Come August and September, many of the hotels and some restaurants shutter for an annual closing period. It’s a quiet time and one that many vacationers love, for just that reason. Come October, everything begins re-opening up with great energy. Hotels sport a range of renovations, announce new chefs and menus and everyone, residents and visitors alike are excited to see what new bistros and boutiques the season will bring.

I’ve been traveling to St.Barth in November for a number of years now with the St. Barth Properties (SBP) team for the pre-season inspection trip. I find the enthusiasm as tangible as the whiff of the scent of fresh paint. This year I added in some vacation time. Joining SBP’s president, my client and friend Peg Walsh. Together with our husbands and other friends, we shared the delightful Villa Nirvana. It was perfect for 3 couples, like many villas in the portfolio, its en suite bedrooms are privately situated and the poolside outdoor living spaces are designed to gather and socialize and take in a spectacular view. And we did.

Villa Nirvana

Villa Nirvana

My husband and I loved the Lurin location in part due to its proximity to Gouverneur Beach, one of our favorites. We could jump in the car and head down for a morning swim and be back in no time for a 2nd helping of French pastries. (Our St. Barth guilty pleasure.) The week went by all too quickly, a shopping trip combined with burgers, ice cold Caribs, and people-watching at the legendary Le Select; picnic lunches and swimming at St. Jean Beach where, end of day, we’d stroll down to La Plage’s Pink Parrot bar for a late-afternoon glass of rosé and a lovely day at the Christopher. The Pt. Milou hotel offers Day Passes and 80 euros per person will reserve you a plush poolside sunbed, umbrella and towel. The seafront pool here is the island’s largest and just gorgeous. A welcome cocktail and lunch at the feet-in-the-sand Mango is included. Spa aficionados can upgrade the Pass to include treatments at the hotel’s Spa Sisley. Check-in the with SBP’s concierge team to reserve the Pass.

Christopher pool

Christopher pool

The gang at the Christopher

The gang at the Christopher

And now on to the restaurant round-up. Our tradition is to have our first night on-the-island dinner at Andy’s Hideaway. The beloved old shanty with a view of the parking lots has been spiffed up. Brightly painted, plus new chairs and tables give it a contemporary look. Dare we say très chic? The thin crust pizza is still fabulous and the vanilla rhum, yummy. Andy belted out Sweet Caroline as he is wont to do and the crowd joined in. In short, it’s as much fun as ever.

Santa Fe has long been on my must-dine list (I always finish with the old-school Peach Melba.) and I’ve now added Le Carre Lounge. I love the way owner Franck Mathevet describes the preparations of each dish, with fingers aflutter like he is actually feeling the ingredients and I love everything on the menu starting with the truffle oil popcorn. Recommendations: the Gnocchi Maison “al pesto” and the crispy chicken rolls with ginger and lime.

Le Carre Lounge

Le Carre Lounge

We dined at Hotel Le Toiny‘s Relais Chateau restaurant Le Gaïac where on Tuesday nights they offer their popular 3 course pre-fixe Fish Market. The Mahi-Mahi was delish and I was blown away by my dessert of chocolate ganache served with a crispy biscuit, banana foam and avocado sorbet. (No, really.)

The Mahi-Mahi at Le Toiny's Le Gaïac

The Mahi-Mahi at Le Toiny’s Le Gaïac

We lunched at the Sereno and the Guanahani hotels. Le Sereno is boasting a new concept and menu and we devoured a starter of eggplant chips with tzatziki sauce and a salad of assorted melon tossed with arugula and dressed with a balsamic reduction – cool and refreshing. My favorite starter of this trip was the Guanahani’s Indigo resto’s Wahoo ceviche sprinkled with coconut.

This year, SBP upgraded their annual Beachside Bash in honor of their Silver Anniversary and everyone gathered at the Hotel Taïwana’s newly-christened restaurant Casa Flamands for an elegant buffet supper. With that as a “taste” we are looking forward to more.

My favorite of the new eateries is Gustavia’s just-opened Thai restaurant Black Ginger. The décor of the bi-level edifice is dramatic with a bold red and black color scheme. Head up to the 2nd floor and dine under the stars. Dishes are authentically prepared and we love that they incorporate the local fish. The black pepper Mahi-Mahi was a huge hit with our crowd and I loved my chicken curry in coconut milk. Newly opened on the harbor, Les Coulisses is casual, fun and a great stop for lighter fare. They serve tapas and very good pizza.

Black Ginger

Black Ginger restaurant

Our last day on St. Barth was a busy one and we planned to fit in lunch at a little restaurant that we heard was a favorite of locals, Le Jardin. Housed in a garden pavilion and tucked away in the shopping plaza across from the airport, it was simple, bright, airy and absolutely charming. I was delighted to see gazpacho on the menu and it was perfectly chilled and seasoned. However, I did have my eye on the two-fisted juicy burgers that were served up to the guys at the table beside us. Next time. We slowed down, ordered a glass of rosé and “hung out with the locals”. Put it on your list. It’s open for breakfast if you fly in early and it works well for a pre-departure cocktail. And who knows the crowd that day might include a celeb like Mick Jagger or a “special” local like Jimmy Buffett. But in St. Barth. everyone feels, well, special. Enjoy!