Wednesday, July 27, 2011


(includes Isla de Pinel)


Bar at Love Hotel – 140 Boulevard de Grand Case (St. Martin); 590-590-298-714;; on stilts right over beach; stellar wine list and excellent pre-dinner appetizers.
Boo Boo Jam – Orient Bay (St. Martin); 011-1721-554-4670; fairly unremarkable beach bar (touristy) that on weeked nights becomes “ultimate French Caribbean danc party.”
Red Piano – Pelican Resort (St. Maarten); 011-599-544-6008; live bands on many nights; try guavaberry rum.
Sunset Beach Bar & Grill – Caravanserai Resort (St. Maarten); 011-599-545-2084;; watch people jump at to tag landing aircraft at airport’s runway, visible in distance.

Baie Rouge – St. Martin; lovely.
Orient Bay – St. Martin; among island’s best beaches; warning – clothing optional.
Petites Cayes Beach – St. Martin; to get here, you have to walk past landfill but trek is worth it; hike through nature reserve called “Wilderness,” past landfill, to island’s most northernmost tip; island’s most sweeping views.

Hotel L’Esplanade – Grand Case (St. Martin); 590-590-870-655;; charming boutique hotel on French side, overlooking downtown; all rooms have private kitchens and terraces.
Karibuni Lodge – 29 Terrasses de Cul de Sac (St. Martin, overlooks Isla de Pinel); 011-590-690-643-858;; owned by Karibuni Restaurant owners; lovely.
Love Hotel – 140 Boulevard de Grand Case (St. Martin, Grand Case); 590-590-298-714;; right on beach; recently renovated; 7 rooms.
La Samanna – Baie Longue (St. Martin); 590-590-876-400 or 800-957-6128;; Mediterranean-style, whitewashed property sits on beach's cove end; average food.

La Crepe en Rose – Boulevard de Grand Case (St. Martin, Grand Case); pink-&-white food cart that serves dessert crepes.
Restaurant Karibuni – Baie Cul de Sac (Isla de Pinel); 011-590-690-396-700;; for lobster.
Maximo Café – Porto Cupecoy (St. Maarten); 011-599-554-0333; seafood; French restaurant; expensive.
Talk of Town Too – Boulevard de Grand Case (St. Martin, Grand Case); 011-590-590-296-389; not refined; open-air, French bistro meals; order lobster.
Up on Key – 140 Baie Cul de Sac (Isla de Pinel); 011-590-690-773-545;; for hamburgers and tequila-spiked shrimp.
Yellow Beach – Baie Cul de Sac (Isla de Pinel); 011-590-690-338-833 or 011-590-690-771-500; best of 3 Isla de Pinel restaurants; barbecued seafood.

Kakao Beach – Orient Bay (St. Martin); 011-590-590-874-326;; chairs in sand and tables with thatched covers.

Sarafina’s – Boulevard de France (St. Martin, Marigot); 011-590-590-297-369; bakery.
La Sucriere – Boulevard de France (St. Martin, Marigot); 011-590-590-511-330; bakery.

Isla de Pinel – just off St. Martin; small island that used to house mentally ill (pinel Portuguese for “crazy”); beaching, hiking, and snorkeling.
Princess Casino – Cole Bay (St. Martin, Port de Plaisance); 011-590-599-544-4311;; gambling and live floor shows.

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