In time-honored nautical tradition, St. Barts’ regatta season is an exciting exhibition of camaraderie and competition, drawing the best sailors from around the world. And the revelry isn’t just on the water. The island comes alive with shoreside social events and viewing parties—an international celebration you don’t want to miss.
Although only the 12th edition, this race is already a classic, drawing a diverse group of water adventurers, from world champions to locals on wave-piercing Formula 18 catamarans. There’s an unusually convivial ambiance to this competition—perfectly scheduled on the racing calendar to allow professional participants to finish their season in the tropical sun while launching the island’s busiest social period. Different from the standard round-the-buoys course, the race route is announced by the regatta chairperson each morning, testing navigational skill in a very fluid manner. You never know what is going to happen next.
This invitation-only regatta, limited to a field of thirty, is a circumnavigation of the island for super-yachts of more than 30.5-meter length. Part of St Bart’s life since 1995, the intimacy of such large boats docked so closely together in the small harbor builds unity amidst competitors, while the good wind and warm temperature make this a favorite course. On land, enthusiastic “Bucketeers” turn the island into an open-air carnival, including 5-hour viewing lunches at popular beachside bistros such as hotspots Do Brazil, Nikki Beach, Le Plage, and Eden Roc. In such a happy, high-spirited community, everyone wins.
With over one thousand sailors on more than 60 racing yachts, this five-day race series has an ecological emphasis, donating to ocean floor preservation efforts. Bearing the name of Swiss luxury watchmaker Richard Mille, a principal partner who produces an uncommonly valuable precision timepiece as a prize, the famously spirited Nikki Beach party sets Les Voiles apart from other regattas. After several days of intense racing comes a rest or “Lay Day,” with competing crews meeting at the beach for organized games including an aquatic treasure hunt. It’s all about the teamwork—on and off the water!
Historically a French West Indies colony, St Barts was a significant trading port, a legacy that lives on in its sophisticated cross-cultural cuisine. For glamorous beachside dining, yet with a casual vibe, try Eden Rock Sand Bar. Overseen by star chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, the menu includes his classics like black truffle pizza as well lighter, brighter creations, influenced by the Mediterranean flavors of the Italian coast.
The menu at Pearl Beach, a buoyant blend of French cooking with Caribbean spices, always has something a little special happening, like “It’s All about Lobster” and “BBQ night,” while the beachfront bar offers suspended swing seating.
On peaceful Shell Beach south of Gustavia is Shellona, known for serving up the best sunset view along with Greek coastal specialties from the grill, and the open courtyard dining at Black Ginger relies upon the careful balancing of sweet, salty, spicy, and sour that makes authentic Thai cooking so unique.
Discover the duty-free islands intriguingly diverse shopping ranging from the most cosmopolitan luxury labels, the same premier names you find in any fashion savvy city, to locally inspired concepts for clothing, accessories, and home design with iconic Caribbean style. And don’t worry—we know all the best places, even the little hidden treasures.
If you are in the mood to explore, the island has 14 gorgeous beaches, each with its own character. Wander over to Lorient Beach, adjacent to the island’s first French settlement (1648), where the surfers gather. You can just watch or rent gear from the surf shack and paddle out yourself before grabbing lunch at local favorite, JoJo’s burgers.
On an island known for luxury accommodations, Cuvée properties stand out for their majestic water views and masterful design reflecting the outdoor nature of authentic Caribbean life, with spaces for larger gatherings as well as more intimate settings. Set apart by its singular location, Villa Vue de Rêves is situated on almost an acre of land with views of Baie de St. Jean and the distinctive Eden Rock Hotel atop its rocky promontory, with gorgeous aquamarine water stretching beyond to the horizon.
On the hillside of St. Jean overlooking Pelican Beach and designed by Oliver Dain Perspectives, whose work has shaped the architecture of the island, the modern Wings Villa has the sculptural exterior of a bird in flight, with two graceful galvanized steel roof extensions making a stylish statement against the expanse of tropical sky, especially powerful in the glow of sunset.
While the secluded beachfront location makes our Palm Beach St Bart’s Villa a crown-jewel destination, and the open-air lounge with 65-foot mirrored infinity pool offers up incredible sea views over three small islands and St. Martin in the distance. And at any of our villas, let Cuvée’s private massage experience with fragrant botanical oils, leaving you relaxed, renewed, and feeling at one with the blissful beauty of St. Bart’s natural surroundings.