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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

St. Martin/St. Maarten highlights

Last month, hubby and I went on a 4 day, 3 night stay to St. Martin. We had visited there last year stopping by Philipsburg with a cruise and thought it would be a nice getaway. Not to mention it was a huge bargain. For only $175 it included the stay as well as a $75 VISA gift card to use anywhere OR an all day boat ride for two to a local island of our choice. At first, we were thinking just grab the money and go, but once we arrived there and saw that the boat ride was normally $75 per person, we decided on the boat ride.

Or so we thought. Apparently, the resort's main office owned by Diamond Resorts International had been sued by several people claiming that in order to receive this voucher, they needed to attend a timeshare meeting. We were specifically told that we did NOT have to attend any meeting. Alas, 2 months ago, only 1 month after making the reservation, they stopped the promotion without informing anyone.

Needless to say when we returned home, we contacted the company who dispersed the packages, Smart Circle. They were astounded to hear that we were told this information and were not offered any compensation during our stay. The next day, hubby was getting a phone call from Smart Circle's corporate office asking him to explain the situation again since they still didn't believe it. To them, this was unacceptable. To our delight, five days later, we received our $75 VISA gift card in the mail. So sometimes it does pay to complain about customer service.

Anyways, while we were on the island, we did have a great time exploring the 36 square miles of both the Dutch and French sides. Although that sounds relatively small, because it is, it took us almost an hour to get from one end of the island to the other. The reason? No traffic lights. I thought driving in the US was scary but you should try it with no lights to control the traffic. It was interesting to say the least. The resort was actually centrally located, so it made it easy to try a variety of different restaurants for dinner. Although, I am very sad to say that I did not have any authentic crepes. We were planning on a nice, relaxing massage and a quiet breakfast at a quaint pastry restaurant nearby until hubby got food poisoning the last night. Great way to say good-bye to St. Martin.

All in all, I wouldn't go back. Four days was definitely enough for me. It was fun none the less. Enjoy the pics.

Zip-lining is always fun in the jungle. It's the climbing to the top part that can be exhausting.

Canon in Fort St. Louis overlooking the French town of Marigot.

Down the hill from "Pic Paradis", the highest point on the island at 1400 feet.

While searching for seashells on the seashore (say that ten times fast), hubby found this shell with what looked like seaweed inside... except it moved. I haven't looked in my old oceanography field guides yet to tell me what this is, but it was pretty funny to see hubby jump at a shell. I probably would have too.

Picture perfect beach at Friars Bay

1 comment:

Lori said...

The islands are beautiful. There is no denying that. But I'm so freaking glad that I get to get off my island next week!!!

Glad you had a (mostly) great time!