St. Martin / St. Maarten

St. Martin is the northern half of an island divided in two and is the smallest island in the world to be shared by two sovereignties: the top half, St. Martin, is French; the bottom half, called St. Maarten, is Dutch. While the names can be confusing at first, the locals accept the situation with peace and equanimity and both nations have their own distinct characters.

St. Martin's French flavour is obvious, and although English is commonly spoken, the accent, the superb food and the casual blend of European chic and Caribbean bonhomie constantly remind you of its history. With only 30,000 people inhabiting its 21 square miles, St. Martin is far from crowded, and has excellent beaches and some of the best cuisine the Caribbean has to offer.

The capital, Marigot, clings to lush terraces overlooking the Caribbean sea and has patisseries, bistros and interesting shops which offer totally duty-free shopping for anything from cameras, jewellery and liquor to designer boutiques filled with Chanel and Dior. A drive around St. Martin is well worth the effort with Paradise Peak (the highest point on the island) offering sweeping vistas of lush countryside, golden beaches and the surrounding reefs. Ferries to nearby Anguilla, St. Barths and Saba leave regularly allowing island hopping. Like any Caribbean island, beaches are a way of life and St. Martin is particularly well endowed with sandy strips such as Orient Bay and Long Bay Beach Rouge Baie.

Dining is an experience long remembered with French bistros abounding together with Caribbean rib houses serving chicken and ribs and the superb local fresh-grilled lobster. Come and experience the French side of paradise.

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St. Martin / St. Maarten resorts

  • Esmeralda Resort St Martin - 4 stars

    Located on the beach at Orient Bay on the French side of the island, the Esmeralda Resort offers luxurious villa style accommodation in a tropical garden setting.

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    Esmeralda Resort St Martin
  • L' Esplanade St Martin - 4 stars

    For five consecutive years this premier property has been designated as a super star hotel by Reed Publishing Star Service, a well known magazine in the travel world.

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    L' Esplanade St Martin
  • La Samanna Resort & Spa - 5 stars

    Welcome to La Samanna Resort and Spa - a world-class luxury resort hotel on the beautiful island of St Martin in the Caribbean, with an enviable beach location and superb views of the beautiful Caribbean seas.

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    La Samanna Resort & Spa
  • Le Petit Hotel - 4 stars

    Capture the mysterious quality of enchantment and romance, found only on the unspoiled shores of Grand Case Bay, Saint Martin. Welcome to Le Petit Hotel, a Mediterranean style jewel set right on the beach and just footsteps away from Saint Martin's renowned French side restaurants. Here, casual, elegant dining is an epicurean delight.

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    Le Petit Hotel
  • The Westin Dawn Beach Resort - 5 stars

    Located just minutes from the Princess Julianna Airport, The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten is nestled into the lush hillside and embraced by miles of blue hues, acres of tropical colours, and sandy white beach.

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    The Westin Dawn Beach Resort