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Thank you for making the planning a breeze!

My Travel Consultant: Monica Purdon

John and Lorna, Strathroy, ON - (trip to St. Maarten)
First, I want to commend you and your office for making the planning a breeze – we will definitely be back. Secondly, after some horrible experiences with Air Canada, Westjet was a breath of fresh air – flight and transfers went off without a hitch.

Our last trip to Grand Case Beach Club was in 2009 when 11 extended family members went for a week. We found that the size of the resort was perfect (we don’t care for huge developments) and the staff was very good and although it was clean and well run it was a bit tired.

I am happy to report that they have maintained the small resort charm but have improved the facility significantly – new pool area and office, updated rooms, as well as reliable wifi everywhere.

There are plenty of diverse areas to lounge – two beach areas, spots above the beaches, and areas on the boardwalk that leads around the rocky outcrop between the beaches. It was never an issue finding a quiet spot to relax or watch the sunset. We spent most days on the Petite Plage beach area where Mickael will bring you a “parasol” to provide shade and cold drink to quench your thirst.

The Sunset Café at the resort run by Chantal and her staff offers very good food at reasonable (for the island) prices. We sampled breakfasts (a continental breakfast is included), lunch, and dinner our first night and all were great. We also went to their sister restaurant Café de Paris at the marina in Marigot - a twenty minute cab ride from Grand Case – and it too was fantastic.

Speaking of food, Grand Case is truly a destination for the “gourmand”. The town is lined with great dining options from the Lolo’s (inexpensive bbq)  to fine French dining and no fast food chains in sight. Expect to pay somewhere between $75.00 to $100.00 Canadian dollars each with two to three courses ,wine and tip at the finer restaurants but the service and food is exceptional. We recommend getting a table on a porch fronting the street on Tuesday night for Mardi Gras and watch the people, street vendors ,and parade as you enjoy your meal.

We made the 5 to 10 minute stroll to town from Grand Case Beach Club most nights and were never disappointed with our choices. If you don’t or can’t walk  there is  a golf cart that will provide a lift which is more practical than a cab but the walk is very safe and doable.

With regards to walking, however, our one complaint about the location is the lack of walking or hiking areas as we enjoy getting up and walking before breakfast. We did take the road past the regional airport to Hope Estate (about 1 hour round trip) where we find some interesting shops (including a gourmet food and wine shop GrapeWine) but the narrow road, speedy traffic, and lack of sidewalks make it a bit precarious. We did take a cab the one day to Loterie Farm at Pic Paradis (the highest point on the island) and for 5 euros used their trails and discovered some incredible vantage points of the entire island. There is a really nice restaurant and bar there as well but the hike itself is strenuous.

We went to relax but as far as activities are concerned the island is somewhat laid back. Diving ,snorkelling ,and boating would be the main diversions and we found that it is not as lush of a location as say Grenada is.

All in all I would say that the Grand Case Beach Club despite its “3 star” rating is a “4 star” experience although price wise it is pushing the latter price point. We liked the size of the resort and the food although finding a good cup of coffee in the Caribbean is hard. St. Maarten in general is a fantastic destination with great weather, good food, and a new and improved airport  all adding up to a great holiday.

Thanks to you, Monica, for a wonderful experience.

 

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