Villa Video: Rapture

About villa videos: If there’s a video, it means we know the house. Full disclosure: This is a paid advertisement, but the comments below are our own.

Welcome our newest advertiser! Rapture is one of those gorgeous, brand new luxo-villas in Virgin Grand Estates and it’s pretty sweet. Four bedrooms, killer views, sunny pool. If you like to have an audience while you cook, you’ll love the kitchen. If you like to watch TV (shame on you, you’re on an island!) you’ll love the widescreen. Great decor. Great covered veranda. The bedrooms are all private and there’s a foosball table! Watch the video here!

Hey Starfish…we’re anxiously waiting

Don’t expect that new gourmet wine shop at Marketplace anytime soon. On-StJohn has learned it may be awhile. The Chelsea Drug Store moved to the second level, vacating its old space where Starfish Market plans to open the much-anticipated wine store. But the drugstore moved in September, and its old space is still vacant. Now we’re told a springtime opening of the new Starfish venture may not happen until this summer, missing the entire high season. It is still unclear if Starfish plans to completely jettison its wine, liquor and beer department in the grocery store, and if it does, what it plans for that space.

The drugstore’s new location meantime is very nice. The store’s bigger and better stocked. It’s next door to Surf da Web.

CSI: Cruz Bay!

Crime scene tape cordoned off downtown Cruz Bay’s park recently, shattering the usually peaceful downtown afternoons. The offense? Old, worn, peeling, tattered looking park benches. The arresting officers took their job seriously. Spending the entire afternoon going over every inch of those benches with a fine-toothed paintbrush. Crime solved. A fresh coat of British racing car green on all the benches, just in time for high season. Not exactly the park overhaul we’ve been expecting.

Yacht Haven already open

No grumbling about development, okay? It’s on St. Thomas and it’ll be great for the economy. And we can’t wait for this place to get done. The new Yacht Haven Grande is still under construction, but a restaurant and a couple of shops are already open. And this is going to be a way cool place. Someplace to see how the other half lives. Some of the biggest, most-expensive private yachts in the world will be using this marina, and that’ll make it a great place to watch rich people and spot celebrities. We love celebrity/rich people-watching (mostly because they generally look miserable and that makes us feel better about not being rich.) Anyway, high end shops, probably great outdoor cafes, pools, fountains, boardwalks. It’ll

Charlie checks out Banana Deck

On-StJohn restaurant critic Charlie Joseph rates one of Cruz Bay’s longest-running restaurants, The Banana Deck, in his first restaurant review.

Okay gang,first a warning. This place seems to be a magnet for families with little kids and I don’t like little kids at restaurants. That’s what babysitters are for. If you don’t mind un-tethered little brats running around while bad parents don’t watch, then you’ll be okay even on a bad night here. That said, Banana Deck is really one of Cruz Bay’s most underrated restaurants. Come on! Beautiful, breezy outside dining, nice views from the rail tables, a wait staff that’s having fun and a great menu. Banana Deck grills up a mean ribeye, gives you 3 ways to have the nightly fish, has great, unpretentious specials and a kooky drink menu. If the baked potato soup is on the menu when you’re there, puh-LEEZ order it. This soup is so good I want to put the bowl on the floor and slop it up like a wild dog. The bar is a locals hang out. Banana Deck is also pocketbook friendly.

Beach Break: Mystery beach

This week’s Beach Break is definitely a beach that is off the beaten track, but it couldn’t be a more beautiful beach. The gated walkway down to the beach on the western side is on private property, but you can get to the beach from the other end. And if you hike over a rock outcropping, you’ll get to a little cobblestone beach that is

Fritz the frog

A funny thing happened to St. John lover Derek Abbott one evening at Villa Capiz. A prolonged encounter with a very curious little frog. Derek named the frog Fritz, and happened to have his camera handy. Several great shots, including one, well, head shot. You can read Derek’s funny Fritz the Frog story here.

Fritz, his frog friends and the other little critters are the evening soundtrack on St. John. Forgot what it sounds like? Read Derek’s story, then click below for a slideshow of a couple of Derek’s great photos, and a couple of others kindly contributed to On-StJohn by master photographer Steve Simonsen. Look, and listen here!