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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!

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!

British Virgin Islands

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?

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.

 

New Hot Additions to our St. John Island Villas Collection

The island of St. John is undergoing a complete restoration after the destruction caused by Hurricane Irma, the Category 5 storm that hit the island in 2017. More than a year later the island is coming back to life and is ready to welcome visitors in newly upgraded villas. Here is a sneak peak of three new villas we recently added to our St. John villas collection. We have personally checked them out and highly recommend these Caribbean villas to all of you looking for luxurious comfort and style in the Caribbean.

Mare Blu

Located on the hillside of one of the most prestigious locations on the island at Rendezvous Bay, this villa offers six luxurious bedrooms with majestic views of St. John’s south shore. The villa is suitable for 12 guests and provides seclusion for each party since it features four separate buildings linked together by tropically decorated outdoor paths. All bedroom suites boast unique Caribbean furnishings, air-conditioning, flat screen 24 inch televisions with cable and have bathrooms with double vanities, showers, and are tiled in grey granite from floor to ceiling and many other custom features. For your entertainment there is an outdoor sitting space with a huge 55 inch flat screen television with cable and DVD player. The covered outdoor area flows directly into the sundeck and the infinity edge pool. The lounge also has refrigerator drawers for drinks and snacks, a closet filled with floats and pool toys, and a powder room for convenience. In addition to this luxurious outdoor entertaining area you can also enjoy a fully equipped outdoor kitchen with with awesome ocean views from everywhere you turn.

Taylor House

This newly constructed villa sits proudly on a hillside overlooking the world-famous north shore of St. John. This spacious 4,000 square foot villa is ideal for groups of up to eight guests. All four bedrooms are air-conditioned with private balconies and private bathrooms. One special characteristic about Taylor House is that is is very bright inside. You will get full sun exposure from sunrise to sunset. Outdoors you and your party can enjoy a heated swimming pool with comfortable loungers overlooking views only mother nature can create. The outdoor area is very eco-friendly and features tropical gardens with banana, mango, lime, coconut and papaya trees.

Villa Sunspot

Villa Sunspot is your ultra luxury property located within exclusive Lower Peter Bay featuring modern architecture with island charm. This majestic villa has a two level Main House with the living room, dining room and kitchen on the first level and the master bedroom on the second level. The Sunspot master bedroom has a private deck with views of Cinnamon Bay Beach. In case you don’t feel like getting out of bed, you can enjoy this dramatic view right from your pillow. The guest bedrooms are located next to each other in a semi-exterior hallway with a tropical garden area and are luxuriously designed with an old world Spanish décor. Each bedroom has its own en-suite bath, air-conditioning and a balcony with ocean views. Despite all amazing indoor amenities you will be tempted to spend most of your time in the outdoor pool cabana, an elegant outdoor living area for Caribbean entertainment. A few steps below it is the infinity pool with a pool bar and tropical garden gazebo overlooking magnificent Caribbean panoramas.

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

5 Things to See and Do on Antigua

Situated in the eastern Caribbean, the island of Antigua is a popular year-round travel destination. Many visitors arrive at the cruise ship port in the picturesque capital of St. John’s, where shops, restaurants, museums and historic buildings are the prime draws. Popular activities include a variety of water sports, such as swimming, surfing, diving, sunbathing, sailing, windsurfing and fishing. Below are five popular things to see and do on Antigua.

Stingray City

Looking for a fun and unique adventure? Located just a five-minute speedboat ride off Antigua’s eastern shore is Stingray City, a shallow pool with a sandy ocean bottom amid a tropical coral reef that’s home to hundreds of friendly stingrays. Watch these magnificent creatures glide through the crystal clear waters. If you want, you can stand, swim or snorkel with them. Feeling the stingrays’ smooth bodies brush against your skin is a highlight of this adventure.

Nelson’s Dockyard National Park

Located in English Harbour, Nelson’s Dockyard National Park is one of Antigua’s most popular tourist attractions. It is home to the island’s 18th century British Naval Dockyard, as well as restored historic buildings and scenic nature trails. The restored marina features beautiful old stone warehouses, and visitors also find shops, restaurants, galleries and museums to explore. After a tour of the dockyard, you can enjoy the panoramic views from the ruins of Fort Shirley, located on the hilltop at Shirley Heights.

St. John’s

St. John’s is the capital of Antigua and Barbuda. The city features an array of colonial cottages and market stalls to explore. One of the city’s most distinctive buildinds is St. John’s Cathedral, known for its beautiful white neo-Baroque towers. St. John’s also offers visitors plenty of great shopping opportunities. There are many duty free shops at Heritage Quay, or head to Redcliffe Quay to browse a variety of souvenir stalls.

Museum of Antigua and Barbuda
To learn about the island’s history, visit the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda located in the former 18th century courthouse in St. John’s. The museum traces the history of these islands from their geological origins all the way to their political independence in 1981. You’ll find many interesting exhibits, including a full-scale replica of an Arawak dwelling, exhibits of the islands’ different ecosystems, as well as pottery and weaving tools.

Fig Tree Drive

This scenic drive along Antigua’s south shore offers visitors a glimpse of local island life. Fig Tree Drive winds through a beautiful rainforest, farmlands and small fishing villages. Banana trees (called “figs” by local residents), coconut palms and mango trees dot the landscape. You’ll also get to see the ruins of sugar mills. Keep an eye out for roadside stands selling fresh fruit.

Our Top Three Villa Picks on St. John USVI

St. John is the island to go if you are looking for luxury accommodations, unspoiled landscapes, scenic views and pristine beaches. Most of the St. John vacation rentals specialize in private and secluded accommodations. Here are our three favorite St. John villas that have it all and will make your vacation unforgettable.

Villa Marea

Villa Marea is our favorite and we recommend it to anyone who is looking for a combination of ultimate luxury and seclusion. It is a very private and spacious seven acre estate located at the end of Ditleff Point. The villa is away from neighbors and features immaculate oceanfront views all around. There are five luxurious suites with room for up to ten guests. All suites are facing the east side, so your day will start with a beautiful Caribbean sunrise you can observe from your private suite balcony. All five suites have oversized windows, private balconies with outdoor showers, air conditioning and upscale entertainment equipment. The kitchen features a state-of-the-art design with Italian ceramic dining ware, two ovens and an eight burner stove. If you are in a mood of wine, check out the wine cellar that features over 500 bottles of imported wines. Read more about Villa Marea here or call us at 615.604.2447 to make a reservation.

The Cliff House

The Cliff House spans over 12,000 square feet of prime land in the exclusive Peter Bay community and presents four upscale bedrooms for parties of up to eight guests. We would highly recommend this villa to anyone who would like to enjoy privacy and outdoor beach living and activities. The villa has its private beach access that will take you to Peter Bay Beach, one of the best swimming and snorkeling spots on St. John. Since the villa is elevated at 100 feet above sea level you can see island’s best beaches and attractions from your home – all the way to the neighboring British Virgin Islands, the Sir Frances Drake Channel and the Virgin Islands National Park. There is a spacious outdoor pool deck ideal for group entertainment. The villa features custom-designed island-style furniture. Read more about The Cliff House here or call us at 615.604.2447 to make a reservation.

Finnesterre

Finnesterre is a recent addition to our St. John’s villa collection, and it is already one of our favorites. We love this villa because of its spectacular hilltop location and because it features six private bedrooms with their own private entrance and patio, which gives you yet another level or extra privacy to enjoy. Finnesterre sits on a prime spot on Bovocoap Point from where the views of Hart Bay, Rendezvous Bay and Rams Head are unbeatable. The villa’s location is ideal if you plan to do island exploring. Finnesterre is a few minutes drive from Cruz Bay, which is the island’s hub and place for shopping, dining and entertainment. In the same time the villa is in close proximity to St. John’s popular north shore beaches, where you can enjoy world-class swimming and snorkeling. Read more about Finnesterre here or call us at 615.604.2447 to make a reservation.

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

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