The port of Gustavia at night A Caribbean beauty spot
St Barts, St Barths or St Barthelemy is a French « Communité Outre Mer » in the northern Caribbean. A short 12 minute flight from St Martin. The language and culture is French.
It is known to most as "St Barts" or "St Barths" and is probably the prized jewel of the French West Indies. With an area of about 9sq miles it has 15 of the best white sandy beaches around including Grand Colombier - one of the world's best beaches, Gouverneur, Saline and Flamands. The temperature is around 30°C/32°C all year round. David Rockefeller once owned the only luxury villa on Grand Colombier and he is considered to be the person that brought St Barts to the world’s notice.
An Island paradise where the rich and famous mingle with the not so rich and not so famous! And a great time is had by them all.
ActivitiesFine dining. Laid back bars. Fabulous beaches. Water sports.
St Barts is now a superb combination of style and simplicity, of sun and sand, of gourmet restaurants and laid back bars. It is very different from most of the other Islands and most people who visit, return.
The restaurants, and there are enough that St Barts can rightly call itself the culinary capital of the Caribbean, are both sophisticated and casual. I saw Johnny Hallyday, who has a home on the Island, in the Hideaway, one of my favourite restaurants and very popular with the locals. The Select is a world famous bar in the heart of Gustavia by the port. Opened in 1945 by Marius, their cheeseburger was « renamed » by singer Jimmy Buffet as « A Hamburger in Paradise » and after the song he wrote.
St Barts is "duty free" and there are bargains at all prices to be found from watches to whisky, designer clothes to expensive jewellery. A trip around the island can be made by car, (hired locally) or even by yacht or Jet Ski!
The lush landscapes and even the other villas are all worth seeing. The arrival of tourist aircraft at the airport is a must see. (Once you've flown in you'll understand why!)
In St Barts there are a wide variety of water sports entertainments - from Jet Ski or Scuba diving to sport fishing, from wind surfing to plain old swimming.
The St Barts population, 8,900 at the last census, is French with strong Swedish connections. French and English are widely spoken. The currency is the Euro but Dollars are never refused!
Peak season is around Christmas and New Year when the rich and famous descend on the Island. But one can vacation any time of the year except perhaps in September when most of the Island closes down due to a need to repaint the villas and hotels and it is also the Hurricane season !
Events like the Bucket Regatta at the end of March each year (front row viewing from the Villa Henson) and Mardi Gras, attract thousands of people.
Villas that face West like the Villa Henson have stunning views and equally stunning sunsets.
Travel to Saint Barthelemy is from all major cities - New York, Miami, Paris and London. Either fly to Saint Martin or Guadeloupe, then by small plane (or helicopter or boat from St Martin) to the island
Flying to St Barts and back to St Martin A taste of the start of a fabulous vacation
If there is one thing that St Barts is famous for, excepting the fabulous beaches, superb restaurants, the mega yachts moored in the port and the tax free luxury shopping, it is the arrival by plane from St Martin. So I put this film together for you. Enjoy it.
No other Caribbean island has so many beautiful beaches. Among the best are Grand Colombier, St Jean, Gouverneur, Saline and Flamands. Ask our housekeeper about one of St Barts secret places, "Washing Machine" near Grand Fond.
Just too many to list here but La Langouste (above), Eddy's, Do Brazil, the Hideaway and L'Isola are all worth a visit. You must also have a 'ti Punch at the famous Select bar in Gustavia. There are restaurant guides in the Villa.
A dream island for shopping in some of the world's most prestigious luxury shops like Gucci, Carat, Cartier or Hermès, as well as local beauty products at Pati St Barth or Jewllery at Donna del Sol and the "Select" shop plus numerous boutiques selling designer clothes, 'T' shirts and local souvenirs. Credit cards burn up on St Barts!
Swimming anywhere. Fun sports at St Jean. Snorkeling in Grand Colombier bay or Petit Cul de Sac. Surfing in Anse de Cayes. Deep sea fishing. Jet skiing around the Island. Tennis.