A Few Minutes with… Thalia, Owner of Hansen Bay Beach

A Few Minutes with... Thalia, Owner of Hansen Bay Beach 1
Thalia owns Hansen Bay beach on St. John’s East End.

Hello everyone and happy Sunday! Today we’re continuing our new “A Few Minutes with…” feature, and we’re back out on the East End. Earlier this month, we introduced you to Ash, the owner of Saltwell Bottom beach on St. John’s East End. Well today, we’d like to introduce you to Thalia.

Thalia and her family own Hansen Bay beach, which is also located on St. John’s East End. Thalia has opened her beach to the public, allowing us all to enjoy her little piece of island paradise. But rather me tell you about it, I am going to let Thalia tell you about it. Please click the play button below to listen.

As we mentioned above, Thalia’s beach is gorgeous. It’s definitely worth the drive out to the East End. Or even better, we can take you there on an island tour!

Want to see how beautiful this beach is for yourself? Check out this quick video we made…


Business Spotlight: Spend a Day on the Water with Sunshine Daydream Charters

Business Spotlight: Spend a Day on the Water with Sunshine Daydream Charters 2 Sunshine Daydream 2 is a brand new 2020 World Cat.

Hello everyone and happy Tuesday! One of the top questions we get here at News of St. John is “which boat should I take around St. John” or perhaps for a day trip over to the British Virgin Islands. There are several great ones to choose from, but today we’d like to tell you about one of the top companies on the island – Sunshine Daydream Charters.

We introduced you to Sunshine Daydream Charters several years back when it began operating on the island. Sunshine Daydream Charters is owned and operated by our friend Rob Woodworth. Captain Rob is a Coast Guard licensed, 100-ton captain and also a certified Padi rescue diver. Sunshine Daydream Charters is consistently ranked on TripAdvisor as one of the top boat charter companies on St. John. It offers both half day and full day trips here in the US Virgin Islands, as well as full day trips over in the British Virgin Islands. And even better? It just added a second boat! That means you can bring twice as many friends or family members with you!

One of the great features of Sunshine Daydream Charters – in addition to its great captains of course – is the fact that it can take large groups. Sunshine Daydream 1, the company’s original boat, can carry up to eight passengers. Sunshine Daydream II, the company’s newest addition which just arrived in the USVI, can carry up to 12 passengers. You can rent one of the boats on its own, or both if you have a large group.

Both boats are World Cats which offer a stable and spacious ride. Sunshine Daydream 1 is 28 feet and has twin Yamaha 200 engines. Sunshine Daydream II is a brand new 2020 vessel which measures 32 feet in length and is equipped with twin Yamaha 300 engines. Both boats are sleek, comfortable, and have ample seating in both the sun and shade. Want to hop in and out of the water? Well both come equipped with a sturdy, three-step ladder making it easy to get into and out of the water. Because if you’re in the Caribbean, we know you want to take a dip into our crystal clear waters!

Business Spotlight: Spend a Day on the Water with Sunshine Daydream Charters 3 Sunshine Daydream II has ample seating in the sun and shade.
Business Spotlight: Spend a Day on the Water with Sunshine Daydream Charters 4 Sunshine Daydream II can carry up to 12 passengers.
Business Spotlight: Spend a Day on the Water with Sunshine Daydream Charters 5 This brand new boat offers a stable and comfortable ride.

For those of you looking to stay in US waters and forgo the process of clearing through Customs in the BVI while saving some cash, you can check out several great snorkeling spots that can only be accessed by boat. There are a lot of great lunch stops in the USVI including Lime Out, located in Round Bay on St. John’s East End, or Pizza Pi, which is located in Christmas Cove off of St. Thomas.

Prefer to head over to the British side for the day? Well Sunshine Daydream Charters can take you to Jost Van Dyke – home of the popular Soggy Dollar Bar; Norman Island – a beautiful island with a restaurant and the famed Willy T.; Cooper Island, Scrub Island, Virgin Gorda and everywhere in between!

Half day prices start at $500 for Sunshine Daydream 1 and $600 for Sunshine Daydream II. Full day prices start at $750 for Sunshine Daydream 1 and $875 for Sunshine Daydream II.

For more information, please visit their website at sunshinedaydreamvi.com


Take a Ride with Us on Ditliff Point

Hello everyone and welcome to the weekend! We were recently invited out to Ditliff Point, one of St. John’s beautiful gated communities. Ditliff Point is a private peninsula located on St. John’s south shore. There are several vacation rentals on Ditliff Point, as well as several lots for sale.

In the video, we started at the end just before the entrance to Marea and drove toward the entrance of Ditliff Point. You can see bits of Reef Bay and Fish Bay to your right, and Rendezvous Bay to your left. Enjoy!


A Few Minutes with… Ash, Owner of Saltwell Bottom Beach

A Few Minutes with... Ash, Owner of Saltwell Bottom Beach 6 Ash & his family own Saltwell Bottom beach at Hansen Bay

There are so many amazing people who live here on St. John. Many were born and raised here, while others chose to relocate and make this island their home. For awhile now, I’ve wanted to share their stories with you. But truthfully, I’m a bit apprehensive about writing profiles. So I decided to try something different.

Today we’re introducing a new little thing here at News of St. John called “A Few Minutes with…” In these segments, we’re simply going to spend a few minutes with someone we find cool, interesting or unique. We’re starting with our friend Ash.

I introduced you all to Ash back in October when I mentioned how he was opening his family’s beach up to the public, so we can all enjoy the sand, the captivating views or even take a quick paddle out to Lime Out. His family owns a gorgeous stretch of land out on St. John’s East End known as Saltwell Bottom beach. Ash is welcoming, kind and has an infectious smile. Yesterday, I drove out to the East End to spend A Few Minutes with Ash…

Please click the play button below to listen to it.

He truly is a wonderful person. I hope you all take the drive out east one day, so you can see for yourselves.

Now I’m sure you heard the waves crashing in the background while Ash and I chatted. Here’s a video to show you how gorgeous his family’s beach is. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Bay Campground: What It Looks Like Now

Cinnamon Bay campground
Cinnamon Bay campground, Sunday afternoon

It’s been more than four months since we last updated you on the status of Cinnamon Bay. It’s one of the top questions we have here at News of St. John, so we figured we were due for an update.

Will Cinnamon Bay Campground Re-Open Soon?

For starters, the campground is not scheduled to reopen anytime soon. But there is work being done there, so that’s great. When it was announced in May that Tom Secunda, a part-time St. John resident, purchased the campground contract, we were told that it wasn’t expected to reopen until the 2020-2021 season. And it looks like that’s still the case.

As we saw Sunday, crews are still in the process of installing more than 10,000 feet of pipe for water and sewer. Once that is completed, the plan is to work on the bathhouses and the main building, and then the actual campsites. So there is still a lot to do, but there is also a lot of progress happening.

What Does Cinnamon Bay Campground Look Like Now?

Rather than tell you about Cinnamon Bay, we prefer to show you. Here are several pictures we took Sunday plus a nice little video from the beach. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Bay Campground: What It Looks Like Now 7
Walking in from the parking lot area
Cinnamon Bay Campground: What It Looks Like Now 8
The main path to the beach
Cinnamon Bay Campground: What It Looks Like Now 9
The main building is currently blocked off with fencing.
Cinnamon Bay Campground: What It Looks Like Now 10
An area behind the main building
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The campground areas are blocked off by fencing.
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The area where the cottages once stood.
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The main bath house
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An area that led to the eco tents.
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Preparing to install piping beside the main bath house
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The former archeology lab
Cinnamon Bay Campground: What It Looks Like Now 17
Looking toward the platform tent area
Cinnamon Bay Campground: What It Looks Like Now 18
An alternate view of the main building

Free shipping on St. Johnopoly this holiday season! All sales will end December 19th. Guaranteed Christmas delivery! Order yours today at www.newsofstjohn.com/stjohnopoly

New Rum Bar Coming to Cruz Bay

New Rum Bar Coming to Cruz Bay 19
Image credit: Tropical Properties

Well folks, we’ve been waiting to tell you about this for awhile, and we’ve finally received the go ahead! A new rum bar is coming to Cruz Bay! How excited does that make all of you rum lovers out there??! And even better, it’s somewhat of a wine bar too. Now that makes me excited! I can’t wait!

New Rum Bar Coming to Cruz Bay 20The new spot is called Lovango Rum Bar, and it is set to open later this month. The Lovango Rum Bar will be located directly above Drink, across the street from the beach in Cruz Bay. And seeing that it’s on the second floor, it has amazing views of Cruz Bay harbor and beyond.

Lovango Rum Bar is going to be more than just a bar. It’s actually a rum distillery with more than 100 types of rum to choose from. And as we mentioned above, it will have 100 wines to choose from and even a rentable wine cellar. Looking for something to munch on? Well they plan to serve a variety of artisan pizza specialties too.

This will be John Yob’s second bar here on St. John. He also owns Maho Crossroads on the North Shore. The Lovango Rum Bar will be managed by Mike Ramsey, a former owner of Woody’s.

And a quick little side note: Lovango Rum is not affiliated with the proposed hotel out on Lovango Cay. Lovango Rum Bar was named prior to the announcement of the Lovango hotel, owner John Yob told me earlier this week.

Lovango Rum Bar is expected to open within the next few weeks. We will keep you all posted. In the meantime, have a great day everyone!




St. John Tours: See the Island with Me!

St. John Tours: See the Island with Me! 21

Hello everyone and happy Thursday! We just wanted to take a quick moment today to remind you all that we conduct island tours here on St. John.

We started conducting island tours in each 2017, and the reception has been amazing! I absolutely love this island, and I love sharing that love with all of you. Whether this is your first visit to the island or if you are a repeat guest, I guarantee you will see something new. In fact, at least half of my guests are repeat visitors to the island!

During your tour, we will do a little sightseeing – St. John has some of the most beautiful views in the world. We will check out some of the island’s stunning beaches – who doesn’t want to dip their toes in our beautiful Caribbean waters! We can stop at one or more of the island’s sugar plantation ruins, and we can even do some light hiking if you’d like. I can guarantee some sea turtles sightings and we usually stumble on the donkeys too! I will tell you about the history of the island, and I can share with you the current happenings on island. Most importantly, we will have fun!

So you may be wondering what makes my tour different from the other island tours? Well, what makes us different is that we are the only, personalized tour on St. John. I will take guests pretty much anywhere they want to go. The taxi tours are sometimes limited in where they are able to go, but not us. I enjoy taking my guests off the beaten path and to out-of-the-way spots that they would typically never see. Another difference is that I can only take up to four guests and I never combine groups, so it’s a more private and personal tour. When I am out and about with my guests, it’s more like I am out with friends. And I love that.

So what types of tours do we offer? Well here are the details:

  • Half-Day Tours: For those of you who want to see a great deal of the island, but do not want to commit a whole vacation day to a tour, our three-hour, half-day tours are for you! These tours are great for those of you who would like to see the island from the eyes of an insider, but you do not want to commit to an entire day to touring the island. During this tour, we can still do some sightseeing, we can check out the beaches, ruins, and do some super light hiking (like a tenth of a mile walk in the woods to a beautiful site) while learning about the island’s history and current happenings. The only difference with this tour is that the stops are a bit shortened when compared to our full day tours. We offer half-day tours from 9 a.m. to noon or from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. The cost for a half-day tour is $300.
  • Full-Day Tours: Our full day tour is five hours long and includes a lunch stop in Coral Bay or over at Lime Out. During these tours, we can see nearly the entire island if you’d like to. We can check out the beaches, ruins, hiking trails and more! If you’d like to spend some time snorkeling with the turtles, we can do that! Want to see the more obscure, out of the way places? We can do that too! Again, all tours are completely customizable, so we will do exactly what you want! Don’t have an itinerary? Well we’ll provide options and you can choose what you would like to do and see! The cost for a full-day tour is $425.
  • Land and Sea Tours: We offer St. John’s only land and sea tour. For this tour, we partner with our friends at Flyaway Charters in Coral Bay. These tours are six hours long. For our land and sea tours, guests spend the first half of the tour exploring on land with me, and then they spend the second half of the day on the water with Flyaway Charters. These tours are really the best of both worlds for someone who wants to see all that St. John has to offer in just one day. You can do some snorkeling at some great offshore spots and even visit Pizza Pi, the Caribbean’s floating pizza boat, or Lime Out, St. John’s floating taco boat! Flyaway Charters can also provide a great deal of history of the island. The cost for a land and sea tour is $600. Fuel for the boat is not included, and costs between $50 and $100 depending on where you choose to travel.

All prices are per tour.

Don’t they all sound great! Who is ready to book??!

If you are staying in the Cruz Bay area, I will happily pick you up right at your villa, condo or hotel. If they are staying outside of the Cruz Bay area, we can arrange a meeting point. We’ll pick you up with a cooler filled with water and ice, and if you’d like, we can bring along a jug of Painkillers for an additional $50 fee. We have beach chairs, noodles and boogie boards for you to use throughout the day. And to make your day even better, we can even take the top off of the Jeep!

You can book directly with me either by emailing me at [email protected], or by messaging me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/newsofstjohn. Please let me know which tour you prefer, as well as your preferred date.

Want to know what other guests have said? Then please check out my reviews on TripAdvisor.

I look forward to meeting you all and showing you just how amazing this little island is! Thanks everyone, and have a great day!

Tag: St. John Tours

St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views!

St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 22

Well folks, it’s Wednesday which means we’re halfway though the week! We thought we’d take a day off from the typical “news” today, and chat about real estate instead.

For those of you who are looking to purchase a beautiful, high-end home here on island, there’s one that recently listed for sale. And even better, it’s located in a great neighborhood, has amazing views and is located close to town. Here are all the details straight from its listing:

Every detail of this spacious 4BR 3BA pool villa was carefully considered and meticulously implemented, in the pursuit of lasting design, beauty and craftsmanship. At first glance of this gently sloped lot in desirable Chocolate Hole, one is immersed with stunning views south to St Croix, west to St Thomas from three covered porches, expansive pool area and deck, as well as master and guest suites. Daily sunsets and cooling tradewinds complete the picture. Complimenting this high-end construction process is an impressive roster of amenities for the discerning guest or owner, including granite counters, marble baths, stainless steel appliances, mahogany ceilings, doors and trim, coral stone flooring, and central air conditioning. This villa will make the perfect family home and or short-term rental with its interior access to all the living spaces and bedrooms.

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St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 24 St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 25

Flat grassy manicured lawns and mature gardens surround the house. Ample parking for multiple vehicles and turn around areas along with the gentle sloping driveway allow for ease in your approach and access to the house.

All things considered, the synergies of this property, including the neighborhood, lot, view, construction, and amenities make it an exceptional find.

After 20 years, the original contractor-owner, who built this “safe house” for his family, is offering his home for purchase. This home has withstood every storm. Walls are monolithically poured concrete, with steel horizontally and vertically throughout the walls far exceeding code requirements. Roof structure is an engineered steel-reinforced truss system and was steel strapped from the cross beam into the foundation. Custom built metal storm shutters bolt directly onto the concrete walls. This house was unscathed when the majority of the surrounding homes, and the nearby Westin, suffered major structural damage.

Please check out a few more pics…

St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 26 St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 27

St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 28

St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 29 St. John Real Estate: Quality Home with Lots of Amenities & Views! 30

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Ready to own a piece of St. John real estate? This Chocolate Hole home is being offered for $1,675,000. For more information, please contact Tammy Donnelly of 340 Real Estate Co. at [email protected].

Popular, Well Established St. John Business For Sale

Popular, Well Established St. John Business For Sale 32
File photo

One of St. John’s most well known boats just listed for sale. Although we’re sad to learn this, we’re excited about the idea that one of you could potentially live your dream and own a business here on St. John.

Established in 1980, the Sadie Sea is the iconic red boat in Cruz Bay harbor. It recently relaunched after being damaged in the 2017 hurricanes, and we’re excited to say that we were one of the first guests on board. The Sadie Sea has been re-powered and has new side windows and new paint. There are a few small repairs that need to be completed.

The Sadie Sea can carry up to 32 passengers in US waters and 12 passengers in the British Virgin Islands. It just passed its Coast Guard inspection and holds a current National Park permit. The Sadie Sea has a partnership with the National Park, as well. It is the boat that picked up passengers at the bottom of Reef Bay prior to the storms. Lastly, the Sadie Sea has a valid Cruz Bay mooring permit.

The new owner must hold a valid United States Coast Guard 100 ton license and have mechanical skills.

The asking price for the Sadie Sea is $250,000. This includes the vessel, website, branding and contact list. For more information, please call Tom Larson at (340) 514-0778 or email [email protected].

Tag: St. John Business for sale


St. John’s Small Business Saturday

St. John's Small Business Saturday 33

Hello everyone, and welcome to the weekend! Today is Small Business Saturday, so we’d like to share several St. John businesses that have online stores. If you’re reading this site, it means you love St. John, so why not support its small businesses! Happy Shopping!

St. Johnopoly
It’s just like the traditional Monopoly game, but it’s completely customized for St. John! Cruise around the board using a Jeep, Petroglyph or a Palm Tree, and land on your favorite spots like the Ferry Dock and Woody’s. It’s a great gift for that special someone who loves St. John. And we’re offering FREE Shipping! You can order yours at www.newsofstjohn.com/stjohnopoly

Bad Kitty Boatique
T-shirts, tanks & hats

Island jewelry including hook bracelets, hurricane bracelets, necklaces, rings and more.

Beach Bar
Scoop up some of your favorite Beach Bar swag.

Big Blue Excursions
Long Sleeve Shirts & Tumblers

Big Planet
Great selection of St. John t-shirts available now.

Caravan Gallery
Wonderful jewelry and gift shop featuring the famous St. John Hook Bracelet.

Christian Wheatley Photography
Island photography, note cards, tote bags and calendars.

Coconut Coast Studios
Beautiful island art by Elaine Estern that includes originals, calendars, tiles and more.

Drink St. John
Stickers, koozies, clothing & more

Freebird Creations
One of the island’s longest established businesses, Freebird has been offering it’s array of eclectic jewelry and duty free watches to St. John visitors for over 30 years.

High Tide
Featuring the popular Livin’ the Dream collection.

Isla Malas
Mala beaded necklaces inspired by the beauty of the Virgin Islands and handmade with island soul.

Island Fancy
Unique items and gifts for your home, family & friends

Jolly Dog Trading Co.
T-shirts, hats, koozies and more.

Just Beach VI
St. John t-shirt and hats available.

T-shirts, hats and more.

Love City Excursions
Tanks, dry fit shirts & more

Clothing & accessories for fabulous living

Made in St. John
Locally designed & printed merchandise.

Maho Crossroads
T-shirts, tanks, hats & more from St. John’s newest beach bar.

Morningstar Charters
Swag from one of the island’s sailing charters.

R&I Patton Goldsmithing
Fine jewelry, much of it designed and produced by Rudy & Irene Patton

Pink Papaya
Unique and unusual Caribbean-style gifts.

Portico offers everything you need for island-style living – from gifts, décor, glassware, rugs and more.

Sail Helios
Stickers, hats, towels & more

Savannah Loftus Photography
Island Photography & Prints

Skinny Legs
Merchandise from Coral Bay’s favorite burger hangout

STJ Creative Photography
Island Prints & Healing After Irma photoessay book

St. John Beach Bum
Beach gear, merchandise and more!

St. John Brewers
T-shirts and hats from St. John’s favorite tap room!

St. John Experience Gallery
Island photography.

St. John Organics
Handcrafted spa products.

St. John Spice
Spices, hot sauces, tea, gifts and more.

Steve Simonsen Photography
Stunning island photography available as fine art prints, calendars and photo books.

Sugar Birds
Tropical gifts and photography.

Vibe Collection
Island jewelry & hook bracelets.

Apparel and swag from your favorite Cruz Bay watering hole.

Yelena Rogers Photography
Beautiful island photography