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Questions About St. Maarten

Discussion in 'Other Off Topic Forum' started by dherman76, May 18, 2004.

  1. dherman76

    dherman76 Formula Junior
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    Feb 25, 2004
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    Darren Herman
    Hey all, I'm fortunate to be going to St. Maarten from 5/23-5/29 and have a few questions to any of you who have been:

    #1: Should I rent a car on the island?
    #2: If yes, are there any exotic car rental places?
    #3: Any specific places I should visit?
    #4: Any great night clubs?
    #5: Any great sailing excursions?

    Any info would be appreciated!

    Thanks,
    Darren
     
  2. jimpo1

    jimpo1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Jul 30, 2001
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    1. That depends on how you like to vacation. If you just want to lay on the beach and eat room service, don't get a car. If you like to get out and see things, rent a car. It's a good island for driving around.
    2. I HIGHLY doubt it, but I did see a place that rented the Smart Car convertible.
    3. None that I'd suggest, there are many great places. Dinner at La Samana is pretty nice. There was also a restaurant called the Fish Pot (?) that was very good and right on the ocean.
    4. I have no idea, I'm usually too tired from the beach to go clubbing.
    5. If you like beaches, take a day trip to Anguilla. It has some of the most beautiful beaches I've ever seen. It's a 30 minute ferry ride.

    One word of advice, do NOT call home from that island. Last time I was there, we called home collect 3 or 4 times and talked a total of maybe 30 minutes. Those 3 or 4 calls were over $300. Stop in one of the towns and buy a phone card, any of the shopkeepers can help you.
     
  3. dherman76

    dherman76 Formula Junior
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    Feb 25, 2004
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    Darren Herman
    Thank you very much for the information!
     
  4. jimpo1

    jimpo1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Ok, you got me questioning my memory so I did a little more research.

    The Fish Pot is in Grand Case. Nice little town for some secluded dining.

    If you like busy beaches with lots of activity, spend a day on Orient Beach. It's pretty well known for being a party beach and it has a lot of bars and restaurants.

    The ferry to Anguilla sails out of Marigot. $12 each way. There is very little shopping, and few restaurants, but the beaches are a must see. Scilly Cay is a fun place for lunch, it's a private island accessible by boat only. You've also got to stop by the beach at Shoal Bay.
     
  5. Wildwarrior

    Wildwarrior Formula Junior

    Mar 26, 2003
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    Glen Winters

    I agree it all depends on what you want, or dont want to do,its one of my favorite islands.I'm not sure where you are staying, but if you take a taxi to 49-A Front Street,Horizon View Philipsburg.My buddy Sonny ownes Grand Jewlerers right on the corner of the above address.He could hook you up with the right people for Jeep rentals, good food, beachs etc.Tell him that Glen Winters sent you. Enjoy!
     
  6. dherman76

    dherman76 Formula Junior
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    Feb 25, 2004
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    Darren Herman
    Thank you so much! I will look him up. Just got off the phone with a fellow FCHATER, thanks so much for the recommendations!

    How is the jewelry on the island? Expensive?
     
  7. brendon0

    brendon0 Formula Junior
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    Dec 13, 2003
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    Darren,

    Forgot to mention on the phone. I just remembered, but
    there was one nightclub we did goto that was in Phillipsburg.

    It was strictly geared towards all the people comming off the cruise
    ships. In fact, almost everything is geared towards customers comming
    off the cruise ships, so at night its difficult to find anything open
    or happening, since all the "customers" are back on the boat.

    The club closed down at around 9 since everyone had to ride
    the ferry back in. After that it was pretty much dead.
     
  8. jordan747_400

    jordan747_400 F1 Veteran
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    Dec 9, 2002
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    Jordan Witherspoon
    Even if you have just a slight interest in aviation, you must lay on the beach and watch a 747 fly 50 feet above your head at least once during your stay! Be sure and duck :)
     
  9. Bad Chariot

    Bad Chariot Karting

    Dec 6, 2003
    239
    Reading, MA
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    Michael

    Well I hope you have a better time then I did there in 1999. I have been to 4 islands and St. Maarten is the lowest on the list. I understand islands will have poverty but this place had 75+ shanties for every hotel! That being said, the beaches are real nice.

    I stayed on Orient Beach which is a nude beach...don't get excited! Mostly 70 yr old men letting their junk hang out. There is a part that is totally nude and you HAVE to be totally nude to be allowed on that part

    I didn't care for the restaraunts but we went to this little hole in the wall and I got a decent rack of ribs. BE careful if they offer you steak.......take a peak around..not 1 cow on the whole island...goat is the main dish there :).

    As for sailing, my ex-fiance and I took a day trip on a 77ft catamarran over to St.Baart which I think was 45.00pp. You get roughly 5 hrs on the island and it takes 90 mins each way to get there. The people really only speak French there and the shops were closed for half our time there due to their "siesta" from like 1-3pm or 12-2.

    Now I know I am sounding negative but if you stay on the resorts, the beaches and hotels are fine..it's the rest of the island I hated. For my $$ I willl never go back there. Aruba and Grand Cayman are my favorites.

    Mike
     
  10. Stackhouse

    Stackhouse F1 Rookie
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    Feb 14, 2004
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    Orient Beach… yeah if French men in speedos rubbing lotion on Miss National Geographic makes you hot then have at it..

    As for me I wasn’t impressed with the island and wont be returning anytime soon.
    (Do some Scuba or Snorkeling that was not that bad.)

    PD
     
  11. rocket50

    rocket50 Formula Junior
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    I actually went there for my honeymoon and wasn't very impressed either. The long standing joke for my wife and I is that St. Marteen bills itself as "The Friendly Island". What a crock. The people as a whole were very rude. Even our resort staff needed an attitude adjustment.

    If you dive go to Saba. It is a volcanic island and the sea life is amazing. It used to be one of the top dive spots in the world. Not sure about now since that was 9 years ago.

    I doubt there is enough road to warrant an exotic car rental service. The roads aren't great. Thats why jeeps are the top rental car there.

    All that said, you can still have a great time though. Enjoy!
     
  12. dherman76

    dherman76 Formula Junior
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    Feb 25, 2004
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    Darren Herman
    Thank you all for your input- hopefully this vacation will be fun (sounds as thought St. Maarten wasn't the best choice)
     
  13. Wildwarrior

    Wildwarrior Formula Junior

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    Glen Winters

    All the islands have their share of poverty,infact it's mostly poor poor people when ever you get off the beaten track or take a little closer look a few feet off the streets. If you hook up with Sunny he will set you in the right direction.Also the French any where you go tend to be rude people unless you speak their language.It also comes with the territory, have a blast,enjoy!
     
  14. jimpo1

    jimpo1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Damn guys, lighten up. Darren asked questions about what to do on the island, he didn't ask your opinions on whether it was the greatest island in the world. Having fun on a vacation has as much to do with your attitude as it does with the location. You remind me of the people that make the 'you better have your own mechanic' comment when they first see your Ferrari.

    Didn't your Mom ever tell you that if you don't have anything nice to say, say nothing at all?
     
  15. Jerrari

    Jerrari F1 Veteran

    Jul 24, 2001
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    Jerry Wiersma
    I totally agree Jim. I had a great time there. What is fun and exciting for one person may be a drag for another. You have to set your priorities when looking for a Caribbean vacation:

    1) Beaches
    2) Nightlife
    3) Friendly people
    4) Does the island have cultural significance?
    5) Shopping
    6) Natural Beauty/Terrain (i.e. rain forests/mountains)
    7) Affordable food/drinks

    For me, I think that St. Maarten had all of the above except the cultural thing. Maybe the people were not as friendly as in Jamaica, but they are by no means rude. Don't worry you will have a great time!
     
  16. dherman76

    dherman76 Formula Junior
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    Darren Herman
    Are there any rainforests/mountains/hiking? I'd be interesed in taking a day trip on a hike or so?
     
  17. AnotherDunneDeal

    AnotherDunneDeal F1 Veteran

    Jun 2, 2003
    5,308
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    James Dunne
    We really liked it. We stayed mostly at the high-end stuff but the beaches and water are really nice. Snorkeling and diving can be quite good. Food can be good if you are in a reputable place. Some of the local looking dives are just that but good food can be found. Liked the Dutch side much more than the French side. Found them to be much nicer.

    Now Martinique, that is another story................did not like it at all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1
     
  18. dherman76

    dherman76 Formula Junior
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    Feb 25, 2004
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    Darren Herman
    Just got back late last night from St. Maarten (Oyster Bay Beach Resort) and have nothing but great things to say about the island. Will have pictures to post within the next 72 hours!
     
  19. Jerrari

    Jerrari F1 Veteran

    Jul 24, 2001
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    I knew you'd like it Darren. Please post those pics!
     

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