The term ‘playground of the rich and famous’ may not have been coined for St Barth’s, but this gorgeous island fulfills this ideal more than any other global destination. What sets St Barthelemy (to give it its formal title) above so many other stylish and admired high-end vacation spots is the effortless and chic nature of life on this Caribbean island and of course the fabulous St Barts VIllas.
Its unmistakable French-ness is found in the residents’ and vacationers’ classic and cool style. Likewise, the finest restaurants’ menus and wine lists are all imbued with that inarguable and unequaled standard of French dining that is globally celebrated. But where St Barth’s shines is that the magical charm of the Caribbean softens the aloofness of its French personality. The warmth of life on this small island loosens up any hint of buttoned-up formality.
Ten square miles of pretty beaches, a green, hilly interior, and unlimited ocean views make this French outpost a flawless destination. Accessing the island from nearby St Martin by boat or small plane ensures this exceptional island hasn’t been crushed under mass tourism. Yes, you’ll find every conceivable luxury in terms of spa services, restaurants, bars, shopping yachts, and so forth but the essence of what makes this playground so unique is that it hasn’t sold its soul to the highest bidder.
Famous actors, world leaders, celebrities, and just plain old billionaires flock to St Bart’s every year to step away from the glare of public life and unwind in the deceptively laid-back environment. Sumptuous private villas provide that idyllic hideaway from which to explore quiet beaches or sail around the island.
The quiet relaxation of each day is nicely offset by a stimulating evening out in St Jean or the capital Gustavia. Gorgeous restaurants and bars that overlook the harbor or ocean, provide pre-dinner cocktails and a fun opportunity to scope out the who’s who of celebrities taking their time out alongside you.
The sublime weather is another key to why this gorgeous island retains its crown as queen of the Caribbean islands. Long sunny days offer a welcome respite from the harsh conditions of a European or North American winter. As a result, Christmas in St Barth’s has become a way of life for discerning travelers of all ages.
St Barth’s offers visitors all facets of the ultimate beach getaway with an added sprinkle of magic. Eleven gorgeous beaches, and perfect swimming and snorkeling conditions, added to which you will find excellent diving in the surrounding coral reef system. You can also try your hand at sailing or kayaking or take a trip further afield to nearby Anguilla or St Martin. St Barth’s offers so many adventures.
Duty-Free shopping around Gustavia can net some lovely mementos. Then top it all with glamorous evenings out and about at some of the most celebrated dining destinations.
You will find the same people return year after year. They enjoy being welcomed like family by familiar staff that manage some of the hottest reservation lists in town. In essence, St Barth’s is like a wonderfully exclusive private club with membership granted to anyone smart enough to vacation there.