CBS Sunday Morning features St. John

July 18th, 2016

As part of his ongoing series called Trailblazers of our National Parks, CBS correspondent Conor Knighton spent some time at Caneel Bay.

Yesterday morning Sunday Morning featured his 4 minute piece, telling the story of Lawrence Rockefeller and the origin of St. John’s National Park.

It was a great piece. Check it out…







A St. John-only villa rental site

July 6th, 2016

The ongoing VRBO dustup over changing terms has prompted David Pinardi of OnIslandTimes and Stan Nicholas, of Lunazul Villa in Coral Bay to come up with a villa rental site that’s exclusively St. John.

StJohn-VillaRentals.com is just an idea right now, but the website is beautiful and they’ve already gotten feedback from the STJ Accommodations Council.

Now they need to populate it with villas.

“We believe the time is right at St. John is the right place to establish a St. John rental site, allowing villa owners and managers to break away from the large rental sites like VRBO and Flipkey,” David says.

They’ll charge a flat rate, with no commissions and to help build traffic, the subscription is half price for the first year.

Owners and mangers will communicate directly with guests, and be able to manage their own property listing and availability calendar.

You can read about how they want it to work here.

This is definitely in beta mode. Owners, managers and visitors, leave David and Stan your questions and input below in comments. They’re looking for the input and they’ll read your comments.







Happy Festival 2016

July 4th, 2016

A little rain couldn’t keep a good, slow Festival parade down.

Jenny Krampf, who sent us this picture, described the parade as “kind of slow.”

Ruth and I think it must have been Jenny’s first Festival parade.  Yes, it is indeed late to start and slow. That’s Festival.

 







Daily Show on USVI delegate fight

June 23rd, 2016

If you followed the soap opera that was the Virgin Islands delegate fight (over something that comes with no vote) you’ll get a kick out of the Daily Show’s take on it.







Owners: This is your responsibility

June 22nd, 2016

A longtime St. John traveler who posts on STJ forums and blogs named SteveV once said he judges a villa by the sharpness of the kitchen knives.

He is right.

Why knives go dull unusually fast on St. John is unknown to me, but they do.

The property manager, house-keeping folks and the maintenance guys are not going to sharpen them for you.

If you own a villa, this is your job. And the honing steel does not sharpen knives. It just keeps them sharp.

Buy a knife sharpener and put it in the cabinet. Guests might even do it for you. It’s a perfect rum punch-fueled job.

If you’re a cook, you know it.  There is nothing better than a razor-sharp knife.







South Shore Road tree not looking so good

June 21st, 2016

The tree in the middle of the road in front of the Westin is looking a little long-in-the-tooth.

I say what green it has may be largely weeds growing on it. Russ says I’m wrong, and it’s still alive.

I think the tree might soon leaf us. (Puns in comments encouraged.)







Ferry building now yellow

June 20th, 2016

There is a lot of painting that goes on around St. John during the summer months.

Low season is spruce up season.

The ferry dock building in Cruz Bay now sports a sunny yellow paint job.







Virgin Fire to become a Mexican restaurant

June 2nd, 2016

As of June 19, Virgin Fire at Mongoose Junction will become Viva La Revolution Cantina.

The new restaurant has the same, seasoned owners…Michael and Barbie Barry, who also own the Sun Dog Cafe next door.

And, employees will get a 25 percent stake in the restaurant through a profit sharing program.

Viva La Revolution will use as much locally sourced ingredients as possible, including some it produces itself.

“We will be planting a garden with the supervision of Gifft Hill School’s Earth Program to supplement our sourcing, working with the Roller Farm in Coral Bay, our local boat captains and farmers in the US Virgin Islands whenever feasible,” Michael Barry says.

One of the menu items will be called Josephine’s Green Burrito.

A Going Away buffet for Virgin Fire is Saturday June 11 with live music and a $20 buffet price.

Tacos start at $5. The most expensive thing on the menu is $22. Click here for a peek at the Viva La Revolution Cantina menu.







BBB (Bongo Baby Backs)

June 1st, 2016

Baby back ribs at Starfish Market were $6.50 a pound. Kind of pricey.

A good rub with whatever you find in the cabinet (like Old Bay, chili powder, cumin, S&P, and paprika.)

The “coals on one side, ribs on the other” thing….

If you don’t make your own, make sure the BBQ sauce you buy lists tomato, not sugar as the first ingredient. This one does.

Bongo Baby Backs…







Six month Brinkmann review

May 27th, 2016

It has been six months since I replaced my trusty Weber gas grill with the less expensive and popular Brinkmann Grill.

The bottle opener still functions perfectly.

It goes downhill from there. Only four of the five burners still work, and the auto-ignition is dodgy and temperamental.

And some knucklehead fired up the side burner with the lid closed.

But it still a very hot grill and has stayed pretty clean.







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