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StMartinFan
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Joined: 07/03/11
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Trip Report - Feb. 18-25 - 1st Week
      #1737438 - 02/28/17 04:25 PM (200.7.56.136)

Here are some highlights from week 1 of our 2 week trip. The trip included 5 of us for the first week, hubby and me, plus 2 twenty-something daughters and a son in law. We think it's our 18th trip, most of them made during our kids' school spring breaks.

Accommodations:
2 units at Divi, where we own a timeshare week. Resort looked good and they have installed a new electronic door lock system that is much more reliable than the old one, where keys seemed to stop working often. Still very slow internet, especially during the high use times, although it does seem to stay live most of the time. Great to see favorite staff, who always welcome us warmly.

They are offering an AI meal plan and we saw several people with the wrist bands. There is a themed buffet as well as live music or DJ every night, so more activity in the Gizmo bar area than some years. We did the Saturday night prime rib buffet because we got in late. It was OK but nothing special and couldn't imagine eating all our meals there! Spent several relaxing days enjoying the nice beach and swimming at Divi.

Activities:
Took the Aqua Mania catamaran trip to Anguilla. You dingy in to a beach bar on the near side of the island, then a bus ride to Shoal Bay for beach time and lunch at Sunset beach bar. Despite heavy rain as we were departing SXM, the storm moved through and we had a great trip. Boat was Tango 2, which I didn't find as comfortable as some of the others like Bluebeard, so probably will go with a different boat another time. Always find Shoal Bay breathtaking with its turquoise water and white sand.

Meals:
Our restaurant choices were a bit more casual than usual, because kids wanted Mexican and pizza, and we didn't get a chance to try any of the new places on my list! Good dinners at:
Skipjacks
Jimbos
Izi
LaCottage - Grand Case
The Palms
Pizza Galley (our 1st visit ever)

Most disappointing evening was at Skipjacks. We didn't have a reservation (our bad) and were told wait would be 30 minutes. It stretched to an hour. Then we ordered almost immediately upon sitting down, and the wait for our food was an hour as well. I understand the first wait was probably out of their control, but usually a good hostess can predict wait times pretty closely. (We would have opted for another restaurant if we'd known it was a 60 minute wait.) The hour wait for food seemed excessive, and it made for a long evening. Food was good but they seemed swamped and not able to handle the crowd, which was very evident from our table by the kitchen door!

Best meals - Izi and LaCottage, although the others delivered good food and service as well. Biggest surprise to me was Jimbos, because I didn't like it that much on our prior visit several years ago. I understand now why many are fans.

Lunches
Kakao Beach at Orient. Excellent as always. They have updated their area coming in from the beach to remove the old pirate statue and the brick well for lobsters. Looks nicer and more open.

Lescargot in Philipsburg. Went so my daughter who loves snails could try theirs. Snails were good but my seafood crepe wasn't to my liking...too gummy a filling with an over abundance of calamari pieces.

Got the daughter and son in law on their flight back to Minnesota, and the three of us have moved to Grand Case for week 2, where we can enjoy amazing restaurants without having to drive!


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