TORONTO — Saint-Martin is on its way back after taking a devastating hit from Irma last fall, says Valérie Damaseau, First VP of the Community of Saint-Martin and tourism office President.
“Saint Martin has the opportunity to rewrite its future and become a model of sustainable development in the Caribbean,” says Damaseau.
“With this in mind, the 10-year destination tourism development strategy was adopted. The ‘Friendly Island’, however, needs tourists and the support of travel professionals to revive its economy. We are counting on you to launch the 2018-2019 season and look forward to seeing you again. We thank you for your confidence and your support.”
Travelweek’s sister publication, ProfessionVoyages.com, met with representatives from the Saint-Martin tourist office at a recent Destination France event organized by Atout France. Events took place in cities including Montreal and Toronto.
Almost six months after Irma, rebuilding efforts are really taking shape in Saint-Martin, which welcomed 57,000 visitors in 2017. Tourism accounts for 85% of Saint-Martin’s GDP.
There is electricity and water, however Internet connectivity is an ongoing project. Vegetation is coming back and hiking trails are accessible.
Some 300 rooms are available, as well as dozens of restaurants. The airport is open.
More than three dozen white sand beaches with turquoise waters are currently authorized for swimming.
Saint-Marin accommodations include: Centr’Hotel, Gulf Hotel, Hevea Hotel, Mercure Hotel Marina & Spa and Nettle Bay Mercure Hotel Marina & Spa.
Planned re-openings or openings include: Alamanda Resort (Fall 2018), Belmond La Samanna (Dec. 1, 2018), Esmeralda Resort (Nov. 1, 2018), Grand Case Beach Club (November 2018), La Plantation (March 2018), Le Temps des Cerises (December 2018), Palm Court (July 2018) and Sol E Luna (April 1, 2018).