Covid-19 Updates

Why Choose the Virgin Islands for your Corporate Event?

The Virgin Islands are teeming with gorgeous white sand beaches and magnificent clear blue waters. When it comes to natural beauty, the islands consistently rank among the top in the world. If you’re looking for an unparalleled destination for your corporate retreat, look no further. The Virgin Islands offer diverse venues ranging from first-class luxury resorts to smaller, intimate hideaways, to elegant off-site locations. It’s no wonder they’re frequent winners of the Successful Meetings Pinnacle Award.

What makes the U.S. Virgin Islands particularly desirable for any type of getaway is that it has all the beauty of the Caribbean combined with all the convenience of the United States. U.S. citizens don’t need a passport to enjoy the islands. There’s also no need to exchange currency or travel with a voltage converter. Both non-stop and/or connecting flights are available from most major cities in the U.S., as well. The British Virgin Islands are located in close proximity to the U.S. Virgin Islands, and they do require a passport to visit, though they do use U.S. currency and voltage, making it a seamless travel experience.

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Minimize your stress by working with us to coordinate your corporate gathering. With over 20 years of experience, we’ll masterfully take care of every detail, ensuring a successful event. We can help you select one of the world-class private islands, villa rentals, and hotels in the Virgin Islands that best suits your needs. If you require meeting space for an upscale corporate retreat in the Virgin Islands, we recommend that you choose the 180-room Ritz-Carlton which has a ballroom for 2,500 along with three meeting rooms.

If you’re planning a smaller incentive event, a villa rental in the Virgin Islands will be your perfect choice. We often rent several villas close together for corporate incentive groups or training events, and they often have spaces large enough for gatherings. Villas offer increased privacy and more luxurious amenities. Larger groups might want to consider a private island for the ultimate in exclusivity and personal service. Private chefs and activity concierges can ensure that your team members are well fed and entertained during their island retreat.

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One excellent choice for small groups is A La Mer on St. John. Located on a white sand beach at Great Cruz Bay on St. John, A La Mer is a spectacular resort-style villa that boasts an incredible waterfront location. A La Mer features spacious living areas and 9 bedrooms that can accommodate up to 18 guests, making this Caribbean vacation rental a perfect destination for a corporate event or incentive trip.

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One can’t talk about corporate retreats in the Virgin Islands without mentioning Richard Branson’s Necker Island, located in the British Virgin Islands. One of the most exclusive and private island destinations in the Caribbean, Necker Island’s 74-acre estate has all the makings of a corporate retreat of a lifetime. Guests can forward to days relaxing on private white sand beaches, a full array of exciting water sports, delicious and refreshing drinks complementing gorgeous sunset views and multiple pristine freshwater infinity pools. You can also book a private tennis lesson with a resident professional coach and end your day at one of the island’s legendary parties. Buy out the entire island for up to 50 people starting at $350,000 per week.

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Another new option for corporate events in the Virgin Islands is Oil Nut Bay. Located on Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands, Oil Nut Bay provides an unforgettable backdrop for your special event. Business retreats in paradise include individualized attention and impeccable service. Oil Nut Bay comprises a residential community of private villas built around a world-class resort. Your guests can savor the Marina Village, Wellness Center, and Luxury Beach Club, featuring three swimming pools, open-air patios, a swim-up bar, exceptional cuisine, and cabanas with day beds.

What makes the Virgin Islands so special is that each island has its own distinct character and personality. The best part is that no matter where you choose, visitors can easily take a day-trip to a neighboring island by boat or seaplane to explore the unique sights. Each island has a multitude of activities to enjoy such as golf, snorkeling, scuba diving, sailing, hiking, horseback riding, or even just sightseeing. There’s also a $1,600 duty-free allowance on all items purchased in the islands so you can take anything from liquor to local art home with you.

Virgin Limited Edition, Necker Island, 2019

Virgin Limited Edition, Necker Island, 2019

Along with its beauty, the Virgin Islands are also known for a favorable climate. The islands boast an average temperature of 77ºF in the winter and 82ºF in the summer. Steady trade winds also help to keep the islands comfortably cool year-round. Whether planning for a group of CEOs or an incentive retreat with spouses and children in tow, the Virgin Islands I have something for everyone, and, with the islands’ welcoming culture, a warm greeting will go a long way. Contact us today to begin planning your epic escape.

Where to go Paddleboarding in the U.S. Virgin Islands

The spectacular panoramic views of the US Virgin Islands are nothing short of paradise. In addition to their luscious scenery, the islands are known to visitors and locals for their active water sports culture—one of the most popular sports being paddle boarding. It’s a glorious way to see any island and delivers a breathtaking 360-degree experience unlike any other, with vistas of land and sea spread around you and more wide-ranging views of fish beneath your board than you could get from simply snorkeling. While the ancient Polynesian sport repopularized in Hawaii in the early 2000s, it has since taken off across the globe with paddleboarding gaining popularity everywhere from Australia to the Caribbean. Here are some of the best places to hit the water in the Virgin Islands.

Maho Bay, St. John
A top pick for the novice paddleboarder, Maho Bay is home to calm, clear waters to practice on and sea turtles to keep you company, making it an ideal place for kids and adults alike to earn their sea legs. Best of all, there are beautiful views aplenty on this clean and quiet beach. And there’s plenty more to do at Maho Crossroads, a minimum footprint, energy-efficient, self-powered pop-up village across the street from Maho Beach. Enjoy the Paddle-In Tiki Bar on a moveable trailer, a VW Bus conversion food truck, and the Love Maho Beach Boutique. Rent a board from Reef2Peak or bring your own and experience the magic of Maho.

Honeymoon Beach, St. John
A white sandy beach and aqua blue waters await you at St. John’s idyllic Honeymoon Beach. This is where the locals come to spend their days paddleboarding. While you’re very likely to see some snorkelers checking out the oceanic creatures and locals enjoying the sugary sand, this definitely isn’t a crowded place to paddleboard in St. John.  Whether it’s an hour, day, or week rental, Virgin Island Ecotours is happy to accommodate and personalize your expedition. They offer solo or group rentals and guided trips on their equipment, and also day passes that include all-inclusive access to kayaks, SUPs, snorkel gear, lounge chairs and more.

Hurricane Hole, St. John
Join Arawak Expeditions for a special tour to a remote part of the island of St. John, where the water is almost always calm. Hurricane Hole a famous spot where boats have often found shelter during hurricanes. It’s designated as a National Monument, and access is restricted to guided tours by selected companies with National Park Service authorization.  The tour begins at Princess Bay, where a wide expanse of pristine white sand and beautiful azure water are a Caribbean fantasy come true. You’ll paddle through Otter Creek, stopping to snorkel among the mangroves, where you’ll see sea anemones, reticulated sea stars and more. The gentle surf and reefs around Hurricane Hole make it a great spot for paddle-boarding,

Magens Bay, St. Thomas
The most popular beach in St. Thomas rivals the best beaches in the world in terms of beauty, amenities and all-around blissfulness. There’s no wonder Frommer’s recommends a visit to Magens Bay for the best views on the island. The huge expanse of palm-shaded white sand, excellent amenities, and most especially, the calm and waveless turquoise water make it an all-around perfect spot for paddleboarding. Keep your eyes open for the sea turtles and squids that inhabit the area. Equipment can be rented from the kiosk at the far right end of the beach and the centrally-located bar features wait staff who will come to you on the beach and take your order. This is another beach where you have to pay to enter but the admission fee helps support the lifeguards, the amenities and the cleanliness of the beach.

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Paddleboard Yoga, St. John
You’ve never had a Savasana quite like this before! For a true St. John experience, try SolShine Stand Up Paddle Yoga classes. Using your paddleboard as a mat, they guide yogis through traditional yoga classes while floating on the crystal-blue water The classes welcome yogis of all levels and offer low-impact core strengthening, and intervals to increase flexibility and core strength. Grow your yoga practice in a new way by adapting to the motion of the board. You’ll enjoy the continuous challenge to balance, the focus required to ground while afloat, and the gorgeous views in every direction.

Mangrove Lagoon, St. Thomas
As you weave your way through the mangrove tunnels, look down to see the stingrays, upside-down jellyfish, tarpon and more that inhabit the serene and shallow waters or look up to see the nesting birds overhead. Regardless of what you came to find, Mangrove Lagoon is perfect for beginners and experts alike. The guided tours provide stand-up paddleboards and paddles of all shapes and sizes and keep groups small to accommodate everyone. They even take you around and past many small mangrove islands, including secluded cays, where you get the chance to witness the unparalleled natural beauty St. Thomas has to offer.

Here at Blue Sky Luxury Travels, we are avid paddleboarders and we know all the ins and outs of paddleboarding in the U.S. Virgin Islands. We can arrange paddleboard rentals for a day, or for your entire trip. Simply reach out to us at info@blueskyluxurytravels.com and we will make all your tropical paddleboarding dreams come true!

Best Locations for a Wedding in the U.S. Virgin Islands

It’s that time of year again- engagement season, and so many of my clients are calling me to find out their options for a Caribbean wedding. I love helping to plan this kind of thing- it’ s just magical! Did you know that about 340,000 destination weddings take place every year? That’s a quarter of all weddings! What makes this genre of weddings so popular is the opportunity to hold a wedding in a romantic location without spending a fortune. Couples love the idea of removing many of the stresses of planning a regular wedding as every detail can be arranged at a resort destination to suit their taste from afar. One of the hottest places to tie the knot is the Virgin Islands—which delivers big time on romantic inspiration with breathtaking views, pristine white beaches, and very relaxed marriage laws. Plus, weddings in the Virgin Islands offer year-round ideal weather, some of the most professional and knowledgeable vendors in the business, and many gorgeous venues to choose from! Looking to walk down the aisle in America’s Paradise? Here are some of the best wedding venues the Virgin Islands have to offer.

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Gallows Point Resort
Ranked #5 of the Top 22 Budget-Friendly Honeymoon Destinations in the World, Gallows Point Resort offers three stunning wedding locations for your once-in-a-lifetime wedding in the Virgin Islands. From a lovely oceanfront gazebo to St. John’s world-famous white-sand beaches, each location features picturesque water views and gorgeous sunsets. Their coordinators will help you plan every aspect of your wedding here and will iron out the schedule, while you and your spouse-to-be start popping the champagne. Choose from ocean view or harbor view one-bedroom suites—all of which offer king beds, sofa beds, full kitchens, dining areas, and living areas. The property also has an outdoor pool, hot tub, sundecks, and wonderful on-site snorkeling.

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The Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas

This newly renovated resort in St. Thomas welcomes families, couples, and adventure-seekers to encounter the beauty of the Caribbean in a new light. With both indoor and outdoor event spaces, couples can choose between fresh-air oceanfront ceremonies on the golden sand shores of Great Bay (the most popular setting for ceremonies and feet-in-the-sand receptions) or comfortable receptions inside the hotel itself in their grand marble ballroom with vaulted ceilings, glittering chandeliers, water views, and an adjacent stone terrace. The resort boasts 180 exquisitely refreshed guest-rooms—each with its own balcony—and even has its own 53-foot luxury catamaran for snorkeling and sunset excursions.

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Private Villas for Virgin Island Weddings

If you’re planning a smaller destination wedding, a private villa rental in the Virgin Islands might be the perfect solution for you. These St. Thomas and St. John villas can sleep up to 25 people and offer complete privacy. You’ll want to work with our team to find a villa in the Virgin Islands that will accept wedding parties since some of them will not. We can also help you locate villas in the Virgin Islands near to the one where you are holding your ceremony so that you’ll have plenty of accommodations for guests. Here are a few we recommend:

kismetpavilionKismet on St. John

It’s kismet! Fortune will be on your side when you begin your life together at Villa Kismet, a luxury vacation rental in St. John. Positioned on a verdant hilltop with spectacular ocean views, this villa can accommodate up to twelve guests. Moroccan-style architecture and unique design create a tranquil atmosphere. For your ceremony, a romantic stepping-stone path winds through lush gardens to a gorgeous solitary pavilion. Your reception can be held indoors or out, this villa offers terraces and verandas that are perfect for gazing out on the turquoise waters of Cruz Bay.

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A La Mer on St. John

Located on a white sand beach at Great Cruz Bay on St. John, A La Mer is a spectacular resort-style villa that boasts an incredible waterfront location. A La Mer features spacious living areas and 9 bedrooms that can accommodate up to 18 guests, making this Caribbean vacation rental a perfect destination for a wedding.

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Eco Serendib

Eco Serendib Villa and Spa sets the standard for eco-friendly luxury on the U.S. Virgin Island’s tranquil and unspoiled St. John. Dramatically set atop Point Rendezvous in the southwest, with sweeping views of the Caribbean Sea and the magnificent southern coast, Eco Serendib Villa and Spa offers eight individually designed and elegantly appointed suites that give the look and feel of a private estate. Guests delight in the finely appointed features including a full-service spa and Life Fitness gym; Epicurean Theater kitchen with professional-grade appliances from Sub-Zero/Wolf (private chef service available); elegant dining area overlooking Fish Bay; and a spacious terrace with a pool that overlooks the ocean.

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Our Blue Sky Luxury Travels team has the inside scoop on some off-the-radar destinations for your wedding in the Virgin Islands. Whether you want to tie the knot in a tropical forest, a secluded beach, or even underwater, we can make your wedding dreams come true. There are all sorts of fun activities and serves available in the Virgin Islands for your wedding celebration.  One of our favorite things to book for large groups is a private 50’ sailing catamaran for day trips to the British Virgin Islands and sunset sails.

The possibilities are endless with Blue Sky! We also can provide in-villa chefs, childcare, spa services, private transportation, watersports activities, and more. No matter where you choose to tie the knot, let us help you make it a day to truly remember!

Celebrate the New Year in the Virgin Islands

If you’re lucky enough to be in the Virgin Islands for the holidays, you’re sure to be looking for a place to celebrate. We have several clients who rent villas year after year for the coveted week between Christmas and New Years, and we always love helping them make plans for holiday celebrations. There’s no better way to ring in 2020 than on the beach with friends and family in a tropical paradise. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite events to celebrate the turning of the calendar from 2019 to 2020.

St. John
There will be a myriad of events on St. John to ring in the New Year, from dance and costume parties to live music performances. In Cruz Bay, the Beach Bar will feature live music from 7:30-10:30 p.m. while Drink! will offer DJs, dancing, fire dancers and a screening of the Times Square Ball Drop that goes from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. For a big New Year’s Eve party, head to Morgan’s Mango for free champagne and a $500 prize for the fanciest hat. The festivities here will go from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Heading over to Coral Bay, check out the Indigo Grill which will be hosting a masquerade party with live reggae music from 5 p.m. until the last partiers go home. Skinny Legs will be featuring live music by “The Digs” for a funk/soul/dance party. Ready to get decked out? Skipper’s Brit Pub will be offering costume prizes, free champagne at midnight and the legendary music of the Beatles performed by Poet’s Lounge. For those who want to hit the sack a little early, Oasis is hosting Old Timers Night with prime rib and a DJ, and a ball drop at 8 p.m.

St. Thomas
Moving to St. Thomas, Busspipe Records presents Pressure Busspipe at 9 p.m. at Chicken N Bowling, including additional performances by Verse Simmonds, Jada Kingdom, Monea, Th3rd, Jahman & King Lion. Early bird tickets are available for $25 online at www.PressureBusspipeNYE.com.

Breathe St. Thomas is hosting a Conscious New Year’s Celebration at 4 Elements on Water Island. This uplifting event features yoga, breathwork, meditation, a DJ fire party and more!

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Foxy’s Old Year’s Night on Jost Van Dyke is a legendary party every year. The 2019/2020 party theme is “Arabian Nights” and party guests can expect whimsical décor, complete with a flying carpet photo booth, belly dancers, genies and other themed performers. Partygoers are encouraged to participate and dress in costume to reflect the theme. As always, out-there or barely-there attire is encouraged!

If you want to join the island celebrations on NYE, we can arrange private boat charters so you can cut down on travel time, avoid ferry crowds and be on your own schedule.  Or you can skip the crowds, charter a yacht and go island hopping to ring in 2020! Blue Sky Luxury Travels team wishes you a Happy New Year. Where will you celebrate this year?

Blue Sky Challenges St. John Businesses to Help Island’s Animals

PuppyIf you know me, you know I love animals, and I’m always looking for ways to help them. My yellow lab Dakota was my constant companion on St. John for over a decade, and I just adopted an adorable shelter puppy named Bobo Blue. For years, I’ve supported The Animal Care Center of St. John, and this year I’m taking it up a notch with a big donation, and challenging other businesses to do the same.

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The Animal Care Center of St. John is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being and care of homeless, abandoned and abused animals on the island of St. John. This nonprofit started back in the 1960’s when concerned citizens united to find solutions to wild dog packs and feral cats on the island. At that time, there weren’t facilities for spaying and neutering, so both animals and people were suffering. Over time, the Animal Care Center of St. John has grown to provide a no-kill shelter for homeless animals. I love volunteering at the shelter’s adoption drives and I also help with their unique program that escorts homeless animals to the mainland United States, where they are adopted by families.

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Way back in 2013, I took Twix all the way from St. John to Chicago to join her new family.  She was so well behaved while flying, and I loved bringing her to her new home. About 5 years ago I was walking into Starfish Market in St. John.  Every Tuesday the Animal Care Center of St. John holds an adoption clinic outside the market to spotlight a dog and a few kitties. I was in ZERO need of another dog as I had Dakota who was getting very old and needed my full attention. But when I walked by the adoption clinic on this day I saw this sweet old dog named Ophelia. I asked her story. Denise Walker, who is “Mrs. Save All Animals” (and one of the many reasons I ❤️her so much) was in charge of the clinic. She said Ophelia was around 10-15 years old, had an owner for her whole life, but for some reason he didn’t want her anymore so dropped her off at the ACC. It absolutely broke my heart.

So a trip to get groceries quickly turned into taking home another dog. She and Dakota got along right away and so I then began my search for her forever home since I couldn’t keep her long term. My friend, Ted Sheer, had just lost his little dog so when he came to the villa I lived at they immediately bonded. Yay!! He said, “I’ll take her!” Fast forward 5 years and they are inseparable. I ran into the both of them a few years later and seeing Ophelia so happy and healthy made my heart smile. These are just a couple of stories of sweet dogs and cats getting a second chance at life through the ACC.

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This year, I’ve decided to dig deeper and give a little more to my favorite charity.

I’ve donated $10,000 to  the Animal Care Center of St. John (ACC) Wagapalooza Fundraiser, and launched the “Blue Sky & ACC Matching Challenge!” The plan is to encourage other businesses, who understand the plight of the ACC, to join Blue Sky in matching this $10,000 donation. If $10,000 could grow to $20,000 it would help the shelter greatly in so many ways.

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The ACC has been struggling since the hurricanes of 2017 with three times the volume of rescues, as people left the island and surrendered their pets to the ACC. I believe that the lives of furry orphans matter too, and I’d like to challenge my friends, clients, and colleagues to join me in supporting the ACC. The shelter has already received a $5,000 matching donation from a gentleman on St. Thomas, but my goal is $20,000.

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I’m a HUGE fan of the ACC as it is the only no-kill shelter in the Virgin Islands. The kindness and hard work that their staff gives every day is beyond wonderful. When I wrote that $10,000 check it brought happy tears. There were a lot of emotions going on at that moment. When the hurricanes destroyed the Virgin Islands my business also took a major hit. Since the storms, I have poured everything I have into this company to rebuild it so to be able to write this check to one of my favorite non-profits is the best feeling on the planet. My goal with this Matching Challenge is to help as many shelter animals as possible on St. John. This wonderful little island has been in my life for 25 years. It feels so great to give back to an organization that I’m so passionate about. So, who’s going to join me and turn $10,000 into $20,000?

For a complete list of St. John villa accommodations, please visit our page – http://blueskyconcierge.com/st-john-villas/

Five Hotspots for Fine Dining on St. John

Of all the Caribbean islands, I spend most of my time on St. John. It’s where I started my business, and this lush, verdant island with drop-dead gorgeous beaches will always have a piece of my heart. It’s a relatively small island, with just a couple of public resorts and a small town, Cruz Bay, where most of the restaurants are located. Most of our Blue Sky Luxury Travels clients stay in private villas on the island, and our team makes all of the arrangements for provisioning and private chefs so they can enjoy their meals without lifting a finger. We love helping clients find that special place for a big night out, and fine dining restaurants in St. John are perfect for anniversary, birthday and wedding celebrations. Here are some of my best restaurant recommendations for fine dining on St. John. One thing to remember with all of these establishments is that they fill up quickly, especially on weekends. Our team here at Blue Sky Luxury Travels can help you make your reservations in advance to secure your celebration destination.

extravirginExtra Virgin Bistro

Extra Virgin Bistro is perched on a hillside overlooking Cruz Bay, and it’s a bit away from the hustle and bustle of town. The chefs are dedicated to locally grown, and sourced products and they cure their own meats, make fresh pasta daily and grow their own herbs on their rooftop garden. They purchase fish from local fishermen and print their names on the daily menu with the fish they catch each day. I love Extra Virgin Bistro’s tasty, original cocktails with house-made infusions and bitters, especially the Bird of Paradise and the Green Thumb. And the food is truly inventive, with unique dishes like Tempura-battered Pumpkin Leaf. The menu changes daily, so there’s always something new to discover, and they tempt the palate with amuses bouches between courses.

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La Tapa

With a romantic atmosphere, creative, upscale menu, and personalized service from the best in the business, La Tapa is my go-to for a special meal out. La Tapa offers a contemporary Mediterranean vibe with a variety of delicious tapas and personalized service that creates a warm atmosphere. La Tapa’s chefs prepare unique creations with local fish and vegetables from St. John fisherman and farmers. The menu changes nightly to reflect the best ingredients available locally. I especially love the wine at La Tapa, they serve mostly Spanish wine and have a more extensive selection than most island spots, with 25 wines by the glass on most evenings.

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The Terrace

Located in the heart of Cruz Bay, the Terrace offers outdoor dining on the terrace with a sweeping view of the harbor. Watch the boats come and go and admire the sparkling turquoise water while you enjoy fine dining with a view. Chef Erica Miner transforms local ingredients into contemporary dishes like Pan Roasted Wahoo and Tuna Nicoise. I love how they bring warm bread and roasted garlic butter to start the evening. The Terrace serves fun cocktails and offers an extensive wine list, including some of my Napa and Burgundy favorites. Don’t miss the desserts, especially the decadent Lemon Lavender Crème Brûlée!

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Ocean 362

OCEAN 362 is right in the heart of Cruz Bay, and the best seats in the house are at the upstairs bar overlooking the harbor. Start your evening with drinks with a view, perhaps timed to experience the sunset, and enjoy Ocean362’s Happy Hour menu from 5-7. Then, proceed downstairs for your divine meal.  Ocean 362 offers contemporary twists on traditional Caribbean dishes with ingredients that are fresh, local and sustainably sourced.  Daily specials on a recent visit included Saffron Smashed Potato, Asparagus, and Citrus Beurre Blanc Lobster Tail, and I’m always happy to celebrate with their Lemon Ricotta Cheesecake.

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Morgan’s Mango

Morgan’s Mango is housed in a pretty British colonial style building in Cruz Bay, adorned with graceful porches and billowy curtains that lend a relaxing air. The menu is focused on Caribbean and South American cuisines—Creole, Bahamian, Cuban, Jamaican, Haitian, Puerto Rican, Argentinian and Mayan. Their dishes show the influence of the original inhabitants of the islands, the Arawak and Carib Indians, as well as the Africans, East Indians, and Chinese who arrived later. Morgan’s Mango brings history to the table, sharing how these early cultures blended with Spanish, French, British and Danish settlers to create classic Caribbean cuisine. Tuesdays and Saturdays are Lobster Night at Morgan’s Mango, and they serve it Caribbean style for an authentic taste of the islands.

Here at Blue Blue Sky Luxury Travels, we make sure to sample a variety of restaurants and experiences so that our clients can look forward to the very best. Fine dining in St. John has gotten better over the years, and now there are many places to enjoy a special meal out. Looking for a villa, yacht charter, private chef or dining on St. John? We’ll be glad to help you plan your next escape!

Five Questions to Ask Before Your Next Luxury Yacht Charter

Many of our clients choose to spend all or part of their island vacation aboard a luxury yacht. Here at Blue Sky Luxury Travels, we are experts in yacht charters, so we know how to pair our clients with the perfect luxury yacht. We consider the age makeup of the group: whether it’s all adults, families with kids, or a multigenerational family reunion. Your ideal level of vacation activity is also important: some people just want to lay in the sun relaxing with a beautiful view, while others look for adrenaline-filled days of diving, fishing, jet-skiing, and kayaking. We always ask our clients how high a priority they place on fine dining, since some yacht charters offer elegant meals in refined dining rooms, while others focus on grilling up the catch of the day and taking meals on the deck. We present our clients with a curated selection of ideally matched luxury yachts for their consideration. When you’re making the decision of what yacht charter is right for your island vacation, here are the 5 most important questions to consider:

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1. Where do you want to go?
The Riviera, Italy, Fiji, The Greek Isles, the British Virgin Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Bahamas are all hotspots for luxury yacht vacations. One benefit of chartering your own yacht vs. taking a cruise ship is that you don’t have to stick to a fixed schedule. You can choose the timing and location of where you want to begin and finish your voyage. Blue Sky Luxury Travels can help you find the right luxury yacht charter for the destinations you choose.

2. Do you prefer a motor or sailing yacht?
If you have a large group and want an experience that’s more like a private cruise voyage, you may prefer a motor yacht. They travel faster so you can cover more ground and are suitable for larger groups seeking elegance and luxury. Sailing yachts, including catamarans and trimarans, are also luxurious but can be available for smaller groups at a lower price point. They offer a closer to the sea experience and are wonderful for family and couples vacations. Often with sailing yacht charters, the price includes your fuel and meals. Gratuity is additional and is usually around 15%.  For motor yacht charters, they typically charge for meals and fuel in addition to the base yacht charter fee.
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3. What does the crew do?
Both motor yacht and sailing yacht charters include the services of a crew unless you order a bareboat charter. Crews typically stay with the boat for several years at a time, so they know the vessel and itineraries well. Your yacht charter crew will be made up of a captain and additional trained crew including a chef, a concierge, deckhands, housekeepers, engineers, and sometimes even masseuses and beauticians on some larger yachts. Their goal is to make sure you don’t have to lift a finger while you enjoy your luxury yacht vacation.

4. Do you get to choose the food?
Provisioning is a vital part of the yacht charter experience. Your yacht chef will prepare meals for your group throughout your vacation, but since there’s no grocery store in the water, everything has to be purchased in advance. Prior to your luxury yacht vacation, you’ll fill out a questionnaire where you can provide the chef with your food and beverage preferences along with any dietary or medical conditions in your party. Then the yacht chef will work their magic to prepare gourmet meals for you to enjoy!

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5. What should you pack?
Planning for your yacht charter vacation is half the fun! Your yacht will come fully provisioned with everything needed for sailing, safety, and meal preparations. It’s a good idea to pack your things in a soft-sided bag, ideally something collapsible like a duffle, since closet space is at a premium. Of course, you’ll want to remember the basics like passport, prescription medication, reef safe sunblock (we can recommend some great ones as well as chemical-free if you like), lip balm, and insect repellent. “Dry Bags” are super useful for keeping your money and electronics dry and safe. Bring along some seasickness pills or patches just in case.
When it comes to clothing, of course, you’ll want several cute swimsuits with coverups, and casual clothes for days on the water, sunglasses, a hat, and a light raincoat. Guests are usually asked to go barefoot on the boat to keep it clean, but you’ll want a pair of shoes with non-marking soles and a good grip that you can wear either onboard or ashore. Flip-flops are always good for beach excursions and bring along some water shoes for diving.

Here at Blue Sky Luxury Travels, we are at your service to create the ultimate yacht charter vacation. We personally visit several yachts in charter destinations worldwide to make sure we know what’s out there. Let us help you choose the perfect luxury yacht charter for your next dream vacation!

A Day In the Life: What Does a Luxury Concierge Service Actually DO?

Blue Sky Luxury Travels is based in the Caribbean and creating vacation experiences for clients in stunning destinations all over the world. We make a point of visiting each property that we represent, and we love to share our discoveries so we post photos every day of beautiful destinations and luxury experiences. We know it may all look like fun and games, island-hopping in Fiji, Hawaii, the US Virgin Islands, and the British Virgin Islands, but we promise, we are actually hard at work! Since so many people have asked, we wanted to share what a day in the life is for Shanna Dickerson, the CEO of Blue Sky Luxury Travels. Shanna stays in different islands and towns all over the world, but wherever she is, she makes sure to keep to her schedule and make sure that all of her clients’ needs are cared for.

So here’s what a day in the life of Shanna really looks like:

6am    

Shanna rises early and meditates for twenty minutes to get her head straight for the day. Next, she heads straight for the coffee machine for a nice hot cup of coffee. She checks her phone for any urgent client messages and looks over her schedule for the day, always making a point of picking a beautiful spot with a view to start the day off right.

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6:30am      

Workout time! It’s so important to keep energy high and muscles strong, so Shanna gets her exercise done, either with a hike in the hills, a trip to the local gym, or her 25-minute at-home workout routine.

8:00am

Client messages. Clients and vendors communicate with Shanna through many different means: text messages, Facebook and Instagram direct messages, emails and phone calls. When a new client comes in, Shanna sends them a Concierge document outlining the services that Blue Sky Luxury Travels has available, and clients usually email her with their specific needs. Shanna keeps track of client requests for upcoming trips on a gigantic spreadsheet, so she refers to that and fills in details as she gets new requests. She makes notes of what needs to be done for the day and answers questions for clients who are coming to the islands.

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10:00am

Vendor phone calls. In the Virgin Islands, most car rental services, grocery delivery services, and BVI Yacht Charters operate primarily by phone. This is why it’s so essential to have a travel concierge service handle planning when you’re visiting St. John, St. Thomas, St. Lucia or the Bahamas- it’s hard to get in touch with someone who can set things up. It’s not like other trip planning where you can just go online and do it all yourself. Internet service can be spotty on the islands, so Shanna makes most of her arrangements with vendors over the phone. They’re all accustomed to hearing her cheerful voice and she makes sure they stay organized and keep to the arrangements she’s made for her clients coming to the islands. Shanna makes arrangements for Caribbean villa rentals, yacht rentals, catamarans, fishing trips, grocery delivery, snorkel gear rental, kayak and paddleboard tours, and dining reservations so her clients can relax and enjoy their Caribbean vacations.

12:00pm

Shanna takes a break for lunch, usually a big salad or veggie bowl, at a restaurant on the island. She makes sure to try all the different dining options on each Caribbean island where she stays, so she can offer the best recommendations.

1:00pm

Back to work on emails and phone calls, making arrangements with clients and vendors.

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2:00pm

Client meetings. Shanna handles housing for hundreds of hurricane recovery workers through her Blue Sky Global Logistics division. She often meets with top-level officials to understand their needs and find the appropriate solutions. Some days, she’ll take a boat to another island to meet with visiting corporate clients to plan their upcoming corporate events on the islands. Other times, she’ll offer a quick island tour to visiting friends, to show off her favorite spots for paddleboarding and beach time. Face to face is always best, so Shanna makes the time to meet in person with her clients.
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6:00pm

Dinner time. Sometimes it’s a dinner meeting with clients, or a meetup with friends staying in a Caribbean villa nearby, or even a quick sandwich at home when the work schedule is intense.

8:00pm

Shanna checks her messages one more time to make sure everything is handled, then the phone goes OFF for a little meditation and quiet time before bed.

9:00pm

Bedtime! Early to bed, and early to rise, keeps Shanna energized, cheerful and ready for anything!

We hope this window into Shanna’s world has helped you understand a little more of what Blue Sky Luxury Travels really does. We take care of every trip planning detail for you from start to finish. Our goal is to make your vacation relaxing, fun and incredibly memorable. If you’d like to put our concierge team to work for your next vacation, please email us at info@blueskyconcierge.com.

 

Three Romantic Caribbean Villas for Your Caribbean Getaway

When planning your romantic Caribbean getaway, you want to have best of all. As experts in Caribbean travel and accommodations, let us help you choose the most romantic place with an intimate atmosphere, where you can spend unforgettable moments with your loved one. Here are our top three Caribbean luxury villa picks:

The Suites at Paradise Ridge, St. Lucia

The Suites at Paradise Ridge is the place to go if you are planning a honeymoon or are celebrating any other romantic occasion. It is one of the most romantic places in the world, home to the ultimate getaway for honeymooners, couples celebrating an anniversary, or renewing their wedding vows. The location is spectacular – 1,100 feet above sea level overlooking the Pitons. Each villa is 1,400 square feet in size and has a private pool with drop-dead views of the dramatic Piton Mountains and the Caribbean Sea. The villa’s décor has a romantic appeal and features porch swings for two over the pools, tree branches fashioned into lamps, vivid mosaic tile work covering the shower walls, and elaborate carvings in the support columns. If you don’t feel like leaving your suite, you will have the option to be pampered with additional services, such as massage therapy, in-room dining, private butler and more.

The Peter Bay Gatehouse, St. John

The Gatehouse at Peter Bay in St. John is situated in one of the most romantic locations overlooking Peter Bay. The villa features two suites – the Honeymoon Suite and the Penthouse Suite, both ideal for romantic occasions. Each suite is 1,200 square feet in size and has a large balcony surrounded by the splendor of virgin Caribbean panoramas. They both have private entrances and come with upscale amenities and spacious living rooms, air-conditioned bedrooms with king size beds, spacious bathrooms and ceiling fans. The Penthouse Suite has a private spa area with a hot tub overlooking Peter Bay.

The Beach House, Turks & Caicos

This is a luxurious beachfront villa just steps from the award-winning Grace Bay Beach. What makes The Beach House ideal for romantic occasions is the magnificent views featured from its direct oceanfront location. The open floor layout of the living room boasts scenic views of the pool and the sea. The pool is just a few steps away from the sandy beach and has plenty of seating and lounging space, perfect for romantic gatherings and entertainment. When you book this home, you can do custom upgrades for an additional fee, such as villa pre-stocking, a private butler and chef, restaurant reservations, arrange tours and activities and more.

If you are interested in these properties or any other in the Caribbean, please let us know 🙂 info@blueskyconcierge.com

Blue Sky Luxury Travels Expands in 2019

Blue Sky is expanding and we want you to be the first to know! In addition to our full-service luxury concierge and event company, we now offer housing logistics for corporate clients and luxury villa rentals. Blue Sky Global Logistics is our newest division, providing corporate and workforce housing for disaster relief staff. We are currently at work in the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico housing workers who are helping to rebuild and restore areas affected by natural disaster. We’ve also expanded our villa rental portfolio throughout the Caribbean and the Bahamas. Every day, we spotlight a different villa on our Blue Sky Luxury Villas Facebook page.

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Our blog has expanded, and we now provide articles each month with all types of information, travel tips, memories and suggestions to make you a more informed luxury traveler.

2019 is shaping up to be an amazing year, and this is just the beginning! We look forward to serving our clients with boutique attention and exceptional service. We are here for all your travel needs, simplifying everything for individuals, families, weddings, and corporations. Feel free to contact us if you need some help planning your next vacation!

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