Island Update:  The BVI, Caneel Bay Beach Club & The Longboard

Island Update: The BVI, Caneel Bay Beach Club & The Longboard

Good Morning, Good Morning!  And happy Fri-YAY!  It has been an absolutely GORGEOUS week on island with scattered showers and light cloud cover blowing through amidst the sunshine.  The water is gorgeous, although the clarity is still a little hazy in some spots due to the recent storms.  But that didn’t stop us from hanging out with some turtles and sting rays at Maho yesterday or from visiting our little nurse shark friend at Lovango earlier this week on Asante.  And St. John is SO green!  It’s absolutely glorious!  I said ,”Wow, it is so beautiful out today,” a total of about 20 times yesterday.  It really never gets old 🙂

Island Update: The BVI, Caneel Bay Beach Club & The Longboard 1
Isn’t she lovely!!! Maho and Francis from the water.

I have a ton of stories on my desk right now that I am polishing up or awaiting further information on in order to go into more detail for you in the coming weeks.  But there have been a lot of questions rolling in about certain topics that I wanted to get to in a little update here today.

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Renderings of the upcoming improvements at The Longboard

The Longboard

If you are on island this week, you have probably noticed that the restaurant is tarped off and closed.  Which is a huge bummer for all of us because, well, let’s face it, we all crave those poke bowls!  I received an update from owner Clint Gaskins this morning in regard to what they are working on and when we can expect to enjoy those craft cocktails and delicious bar snacks again.

Currently, they are hoping to be open by mid-December if not earlier.  But a set date is impossible to nail down right now with all of the work that is going on and the expectations of equipment deliveries (island problems 🙂 ).  Once re-opened, guests will enjoy seating at a brand-new bar with fresh fixtures and chairs that will all keep with that surf culture vibe that The Longboard is known for.  Clint told me they will also be introducing new additions to the Chef Team in the weeks to come and once re-opened, we will see some new menu items and some fresh craft cocktails.

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Caneel Bay Beach Club

Island Time is a real thing and this project is no exception.  A ton of you who are arriving this month have asked whether or not the Beach Club will be open yet upon your arrival.  The original opening date was November 1 and then mid-month but now they are playing the waiting game for permits. The leaseholder, Mark Snyder, told me this morning that they are currently ready to go as far as the facilities and staffing goes.  But they are waiting for permits from Coastal Zone Management and Department of Planning and Natural Resources to open their doors for your enjoyment.

A few things I wanted to touch on very quickly that seemed to be points of contention in the previous article about the new Beach Club that will open with a goal of bringing back that old Caneel Bay vibe.  The notion of not allowing outside food and beverages was a trigger point for a lot of you.  So, I asked Mark to explain to me how this would be enforced perse and what exactly that meant.

“It’s less about the food and beverage and more about their packaging and the potential waste in the area, ” he explained.

His goal with this statement was NOT about revenue for the on-site facilities and was more about the amount of trash that his team spent six months cleaning up prior to the refurbishment of the facilities on the property.  They will not be using ANY plastic on the property and, therefore, would very much enjoy keeping it off of the beach and, in turn, out of the water.

They will encourage people, if they want to bring their lunch, to eat in one of the on-site dining areas in order to make sure everything is properly disposed of.  As far as outside coolers go, they will not be permitted on the official shuttles from Caneel Bay Resort.  But guests arriving at Honeymoon via trail or boat cannot be dissuaded from doing so.  The big concern, that we all should share, is keeping the beach and our beautiful waters clean!

More to come on this after I visit the property with Mark early next week!

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Are we surprised that the date for the release of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has come and gone without a peep of its content?  The last update on the upcoming agreement between the USVI and BVI was at the end of September with a release date of October 22.  But here we are in November without any more information.

This Tuesday was election day here in the USVI and the ramp up for those activities have probably taken the center stage over the past few weeks.  For those of you that didn’t see the results yet; Governor Bryan was re-elected.  Which means that the talks that were in place with the Premier are likely still moving forward.  But, well, I guess the theme of this entire write up is ISLAND TIME.  So…I’m literally checking every website I can think of daily and checking in via text with multiple charter companies a few times a week to find out if ANY information is out there.  It isn’t yet, but I’ll let you know as soon as I do!  Unfortunately, until the MOU is released, it’s all really a guessing game about the future right now.

So, I guess the definitive answers to many of your questions are still kind of hovering out there amidst the Caribbean blues and mountains of green.  On island time.  But I wanted to take the time today to address your concerns and provide what information I can in relation to them!  Thanks for following along with me as we wait patiently together.  I’ll be sure to update you with the details on all of this as soon as I can!  I hope you can get out to enjoy some sunshine this weekend whereever you are 🙂

7 thoughts on “Island Update: The BVI, Caneel Bay Beach Club & The Longboard”

  1. Can’t wait for your review of CBBC but….. 6 months cleaning up trash caused by beachgoers? Really? Or the concessionaires.

    Are they claiming the entire beach?

  2. I’m appalled at your article about the Caneel Bay Beach Club. THEY DON’T OWN THE BEACH. People can bring anything they want to the beach! If they are trying to prevent people from bringing coolers or food by running the transportation service, that just stinks. We all try to be good stewards of all the beaches we visit, to make this guy some sort of landlord is not right.

  3. “They will not be using ANY plastic on the property and, therefore, would very much enjoy keeping it off of the beach and, in turn, out of the water.”

    This is a great step in the right direction!!!

  4. Thank you for your updates, I appreciate your efforts. You are my go to while on the island for info and no matter what opens or not, we are enjoying this island and all it has to offer!

  5. I love this beach and am glad that it is reopening under new leadership. However, I must regrettably say that not allowing coolers on the resort shuttle is going to keep me and a lot of folks away. On St John for a group of 4 or more, bringing your own drinks and lunch in a cooler saves $$$. Not many people are going to haul a big cooler on the hike from the Visitors Center. I wish them all the best.

  6. Hi Hillary! Thanks for keeping us all up-to date on island events. As we move into those loooong cold winter months here on the East coast, so nice to slip away for a dreamy moment on island time!

  7. If Honeymoon was trashed it was from the prior “stewards” and their attempts to make a buck! This guy is just looking to do the same.
    When Honeymoon was only accessible by trail and boat it was spotless and people packed out what they packed in. Because it required effort to get to it was not trampled by the masses. Beach Clubs and environmental stewardship hardly go hand in hand.
    Unfortunately there are lazy litter bugs everywhere but a beach club is hardly the remedy. This just reeks of elitism within the park . I thought they were looking to return Caneel to the goals of a National Park, stewardship, education, appreciation of nature? Guess not.

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