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Our trip report
Posted by: John (
Date: December 16, 2008 07:18AM

I apologize now to those that already read this trip report on another board but I thought I'd post it here for those that frequent this site...

We began our journey with Continental out of Newark. As always, the plane left on time, had individual monitors for viewing movies, listening to music, and playing games with touch screens. This was our first experience with this new system and it certainly made the 3.5 hour flight seem like 1 hour.

We arrived at PJIA slightly early and Lesley from Kenny’s was there to greet us with our rental car. As always a pleasure to see Lesley, we filled out the paperwork in the parking lot of the airport and proceeded to go to our new condo at Rainbow Beach Club.

From that point on for the first week, the weather was picture perfect. Each day brought a smile to my face and each morning we were greeted with a beautiful view of the Caribbean with our morning coffee. The second week was a little iffy with some brief showers during the day that made us hesitate to go to the beach.

This year was slightly different as I needed to do more shopping than normal, visiting Ace and Grand Marche in Cole Bay many times. We also needed to do some, Cable, GeBe and RBTT dealings and so many days were taken up with paperwork but everything seemed to go better than expected. Ahhh…the life of a homeowner….BUT the scenery seemed to make everything so much easier on the soul. Although we were warned about dealing with island businesses and how frustrating it could be, we found it to be actually pleasurable with people who were a delight to deal with.

We visited Mullet 3 times during our stay and during that time the water was absolutely gorgeous. On the 3rd visit, there was hardly a wave and the water was the perfect temp to cool off after lying on the chair. I have already posted what happened on our 2nd day there with our unfortunate sand trap incident but after dropping off our car at the airport, I was shocked to see how little it cost to repair the bumper compared to the States and so I thank Lesley for his patience, his smiles, and his assurances that everything would be just fine. Hopefully our CC will cover it but if not, we wouldn't be in debt for life...

We didn’t eat out as often as I would have liked (since we WERE on vacation) but we did eat at Toppers by the Sea, Paris Bistro, Uncle Harry’s, Fashion Café, the Soprano’s Restaurant, Rosie’s at Mullet, and the Sugar Cane Café. All other times we ate at the condo with some special meals prepared by Chef Victoire….

The food at Toppers was delicious although some would classify it as a home cooked meal. I had the Brisket and Rick, the Prime Rib special. The waitress we had was terrific!!! She even brought the staff over to sing a Happy Anniversary song and I thought that was just so sweet and thoughtful. The prices were really reasonable and so I would recommend this place as some where to go when you just want some good home cooked food.

At Uncle Harry’s we both had the steaks and even though the food was good, I would not call it outstanding. When I say this, I do not mean that it was bland.. it was good. Just not a “Wow” sort of meal. Believe it or not, I did get slightly queezy as the boat did shift while we ate but once back on land, I was fine and no fault of Uncle Harry’s.

Paris Bistro was terrific this year. Rick had his usual Onion Soup and Steak and I tried the Lemon Chicken. Although I expected it to be a typical “lemon chicken” dish, it actually was deliciously simple yet enough for me to say “Wow…this sauce is really, really good!”...thus the wow factor. And of course Bernard was a delight to see again. He is no longer associated with The Wharf and seemed relieved about this. His place in Maho is always a pleasure to visit.

The Fashion Café is always nice for a simple Margarita pizza and so we went there a few times. We like sitting in the courtyard as it is peaceful, quiet, and just a delight. Their prices are easy on the eyes and always a good place to go for something simple.

The Sugar Cane Café is always a must for us for lunch or dinner when we are looking for another simple meal. Their food is plentiful and the meals are fresh and tasty. I would compare their food to a TGIF restaurant where comfort food is a must. We went there twice for lunch and once for dinner and were not disappointed at all.

This year we returned to the Soprano’s restaurant and we were a little disappointed. Their antipasto plate for 2 was not as imaginative as years past and their pizza was more on the dry side. The location is good for us as we enjoy Maho in the evenings but it seems that they switched chefs and thus the food style and taste changed as well.

I had never had the ribs at Rosie’s located at Mullet but I was pleasantly surprised how tasty the ribs were. For a nice day at the beach with some easy food, I would recommend Rosie’s. They also seemed to finish off fixing up the place after the hurricane and so I think that they are now happy to be back to normal.

As you can see, we were being economical this trip, due to my MANY visits to Ace and Grand Marche but maybe next year we'll be a little more adventuresome...

The casino’s were not good to us this year but we still had fun meeting and sitting with our friends even though we were all staying at various locations due to the Royal Islander closing. Hope your trip was great Harriette!

We got to meet a few new faces this year such as Laura and Roger (GraciesMemory) and Georgia and David (GaKaye). What WONDERFUL people!!! I want to thank both Laura and Roger and Georgia and David for taking the time to come by our place so that we could finally meet and chat. And a personal note to Laura and Roger who have a common interest…our little boys did backflips when they saw us!!! And we also got to see Bob and Maggie (Bob1P) again since they were staying next door on the Dutch side…

And of course, it’s always a delight to see Elaine and Bill! They are such wonderful people who have helped us immensely to settle into our place and I have to say that we could not have better neighbors than them! I also got to meet their neighbor Michelle who is also a such a very nice person as well.

On our return flight with Continental, the lines to get through the security area were Looooooog! Now that they are checking passports before you enter the scanning area, the lines wrap around and around and almost back to the escalator. They only had 3 people checking passports and so one side took ½ hour longer to get through than the other. There were at least 200 people waiting to get through the passport area and for those who like to do last minute check-ins…DON’T. Make sure that you go upstairs with at least 45 minutes to spare. We were lucky and were on the side that moved slightly quicker. I would assume that this is what happens on weekend travel and that during the week may be better.

The return flight was a little bumpy but with a Dramamine in my system, didn’t seem to bother me as much. Their new video system was not working at all and so we didn’t get to enjoy the ride as much nor were we able to listen to any music. The return flight felt like the full 4 hours And so sometimes improvements on things takes us all a step backwards…. Customs and immigration was a breeze and before you knew it, we were home again to cold weather.

Well, all in all, the trip went by fast…too fast. By keeping busy running errands and setting up accounts, the weeks flew by but hopefully next year we won’t have to wait as long.


Life is not a child's game of follow the Leader. Instead, life is more about finding one's own purpose in life....your life's plan, and then making a positive difference on earth.

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Re: Our trip report
Posted by: BIGDENX (
Date: December 16, 2008 10:22AM


Thanks for the detailed report.

Time does fly too fast...I'm happy to hear you enjoyed TOPPER'S by the SEA. TOPPER's has become a favourite of ours as well. SUGAR CANE CAFE is always consistently good with one of the best Caesar salads around for a light lunch and interesting people watching to boot.

Good report...good trip! THANKS!


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Re: Our trip report
Posted by: John (
Date: December 16, 2008 12:33PM

Thanks Denis! The caesar salad at Sugar Cane is always so fresh! You can actually taste anchiovies in it even though you don't see them. I always get that instead of the fries.


Life is not a child's game of follow the Leader. Instead, life is more about finding one's own purpose in life....your life's plan, and then making a positive difference on earth.

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