Day 9, February 9th, St. Barthelemy
Undoubtedly, the best weather of the cruise greeted us this morning. Ah, St. Barth, the gem of our trip and a little bit of France in the Caribbean. The finest shopping you can imagine: Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Longchamps, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, Channel and other quality local French stores. A shoppers paradise!
Here is a view from our cabin after the anchors were dropped:
It was a short, rough tender trip from the Riviera to shore. Once ashore we visited the shops and ambled over to the beach for lunch. There were some interesting things to see and photograph.
We ate at a restaurant on Shell Beach called, interestingly enough, Shellona. Wonder what came first, the restaurant or the beach?
The meal was very nice; we had a “Trio of Mellanzane” which was not what you would expect. This dish was recommended by a gentleman in one of the shops and we expected something with three different eggplant preparations. Not to be. There were three spreads, a caponata (eggplant spread), a fish mousse and a tiziki dip with fennel, all accompanied by pita chips.
The “Trio of Mellanzane” was followed by a wahoo carpaccio. The carpaccio was accompanied with capers, jalapeño slices, small bread crumbs and dressed with a light passion fruit dressing. A small salad of fresh greens topped it off. Two beers and a view of the ocean made for a pleasant meal.
Here are a couple of photos taken at Shell Beach:
We took our time walking back to the harbor. Picture taking was the order of the moment. Here are a few shots of St. Barths:
We walked along the harbor which was filled with expensive and beautiful yachts intermingled with smaller, yet I am sure, pricy boats. Overlooking the harbor are the remains of Fort Oscar on the west and a crucifix and lighthouse to the east.
We looked in the stores as a form of entertainment. We did not come on this voyage to shop. Still in all, we were drawn to the shops like a child to candy. Not easy to resist, especially when the prices for luxury items is significantly lower than state side. But we survived unscathed. Not so for everyone. On the tender, back to the ship, we saw many bags from the best shops in town; at least four “Louis V” orange bags in our row of seats alone.
Back on board, it was time to haul up the tenders, lift anchors and get underway for Miami. Two days at sea and we will be old news to our crew. We sat out on our veranda for sail away. It was very pleasant; a little breeze and some shade to protect our eyes.
Here is a photo from our veranda at sail away:
We planned to attend a cocktail party with officers in the Horizon Lounge but those plans were dashed when JoAnn experienced problems with her cell phone. Apparently, a client of her’s had her computer hacked and it was sending email to all of her contacts. In an exercise of caution we immediately decided to change her password; a process that took more than 2 1/2 hours thanks to poor internet connectivity. As the “soup Nazi” would say, “no party for you.” Instead, it was back to the Martini Bar for us; another day, another cocktail.
We arranged, so we thought, for dinner in Jacques. Our first visit there was so good we wanted to return. We asked the Maitre ‘d, as we left following our first meal, if we could have a reservation for the the 9th. While he said the restaurant was heavily booked for that evening, he led us to believe he could accommodate us. Imagine our surprise when we arrived on the 9th to be turned away without any sympathy or concern. If was as if we were passersby who didn’t warrant a second glance.
Undaunted and strong, we went to the Grand Dinning Room where we enjoyed a meal served with good wine. A fine meal, I must say. Then a quick run through the Casino and off to bed.