St. Martin Introduction
This island is unique as it is shared by two countries: St. Maarten is aligned with the Netherlands and St. Martin is French. Many guests are attracted to the great St. Martin shopping, St. Martin restaurants and casinos the island has to offer. As the island is small, Caribbean Luxury Collections' St. Martin villa renters will find they can enjoy both sides of the island no matter the location of your rental.
St. Martin: Marigot
St. Maarten: Philipsburg
On St. Maarten (Dutch side) the official language is Dutch, however, most people speak English. The residents of St. Martin (French) speak mainly English, however, French and a Patios dialect is spoken as well.
St. Maarten is part of the Netherlands Antilles autonomous in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. St. Martin is a Dependency of the French Overseas Department of Guadeloupe. There are no restrictions or customs to clear to cross from one side of the island to the other.
St. Martin - 29,000
St. Maarten - 35,000
The people are a blend of European and African descent with characteristics unique to this bi-national island. The number of European tourists enhance the international ambiance.
This bi-national island has a strong tax-free international economy and a thriving tourist industry.
U.S. citizens and Canadian citizens need to have proof of citizenship and a return or continuing ticket. Proof of citizenship would include birth certificate, naturalization papers, affidavit or an Alien registration card and of course a passport. For Canadians, a valid passport or birth certificate is necessary. There is a U.S.$10 departure tax.
ST. MARTIN (French side): French franc, F (about 5F = U.S. $1); ST. MAARTEN (Dutch side): Netherlands Antilles guilder, NAf (about 1.50 NAf = U.S. $1); U.S. currency is widely accepted as are major credit cards.
Banking hours are Monday to Sunday 8:30 to 5:30 (Airport bank) or Monday - Thursday, 8:30 to 3:30 and Friday 8:30 to 4:30 (other banks).
St. Martin - 220 volts, 60 cycle (converters will be necessary). St. Maarten - 110 volts 50 cycle AC (same as the U.S.)
There are many doctors on the island. Police can be reached at Tel. 22222/22299; Ambulance at Tel. 22111; and the Hospital at Tel. 31111.
Atlantic Standard Time (one hour ahead of Eastern Standard Time and the same as Eastern Daylight Savings Time).
Tap water is produced by the desalination plant. Bottled water is available in the stores.
Anglican Church, nondenominational, Baha'i Faith, Baptist Church, Catholic Church, Church of Christ, Jehovah Witness Church, Methodist Church, Seventh Day Adventist.
French Government Tourist Office, 610 Fifth Avenue, New York NY 10020. Other offices are located in Dallas, Chicago, Heverly Hill, Toronto, Montreal and Marigot.
St. Maarten Tourist Office is located at 675 Third Avenue., 18th Floor, New York NY 10017.
For a good source of what is going on pick up a copy of the local papers and Discover Magazine are useful publications.
Also see www.caribbeanedge.com.