Here’s a question to peak your interest. What vacation hotspot charges less for alcohol than they do for milk or juice? Why, it’s the beautiful island of St. Maarten, but of course.
Upon arriving to the island, there are a few tips you want to keep in mind when searching St. Maarten’s restaurants and markets. For instance, if you’re American and want to keep your money exchange in dollars rather than Euros, it’s best to stay on the Dutch side of the island. But how is a newcomer to St. Maarten ever going to know the native secrets? To help you folks out with some insider tips, I’ve created the following guide to some of the best dinning and shopping deals you’ll find on the island.
While on the Dutch side of St. Maarten, you’ll find some fantastic food markets and wholesale centers, such as Sam’s Club and St. Maarten’s version of Costco, Cost-U-Less.
If it’s meats and vegetables you’re searching for, you’ll be happy to know that St. Maarten shops are usually quite dependable at keeping their food good and fresh. One of the best places to shop is Grand Marche. It’s located at the round-about heading into Phillipsburg. Again, Cost-U-Less is another great option, as is Prime Cash and Carry, which is found in the Orange Grove section of Cole Bay.
For those who stay in the Beacon Hill Area or Mullet or Maho areas, Food Express is a nice little market. It’s right down the road from St. Maarten Villa Vacations’ Casa Boco and La Casita Villas. Food Express items are fairly priced and you can save some time and gas by shopping there for basics. They even offer a number of prepared food dishes. The store is located under the Royal Islander Time share complex.
ST. MAARTEN RESTAURANTS
Affordable St. Maarten dining is very easy to find. There are so many restaurants on the island that offer the perfect combination of quality food, fun atmosphere and economical prices.
Lal’s is a small Indian restaurant just across the street from where the old airport building used to sit. You can’t lose with the chicken and spinach or the Nan. Another bonus: great drinks at reasonable prices.
Marty’s Gyro is another great, affordable St. Maarten restaurant that’s located next to the Dolphin Casino in Simpson Bay. The food is simple, good and always well priced. Obviously their gyros are terrific, as is their fried fish. And if you’re looking for a place with a casual, laid-back atmosphere where you can watch a ball game, then Marty’s Gyro is your ideal match. If the gyros sound right, but you’re more in the mood for enjoying dinner on the terrace with a sunset view, there are a number of gorgeous St Maarten villas that can certainly accommodate.
Who doesn’t love pizza? In Simpson Bay you’ll find Pizza Galley, conveniently located directly across the street from the Royal Palm Hotel. Pizza Galley’s thin crust pizza is delicious and they’ve got quite a selection of toppings. But be warned. If spicy isn’t for you, then stay clear of their spicy sausage and pepperoni!
Right next door to Pizza Galley you’ll find Lady C, a floating bar. If a great dining deal is what you’re looking for, then look no further than Lady C’s all-you-can-eat rib special. The ribs have been dubbed “a do not miss” St. Maarten treat.
Another great St. Maarten bargain is the buffet at Port de Plaisance. For about $10, you get a number of great choices, including two different kinds of barbecue. Be aware that prices do occasionally rise during prime Caribbean vacation season.
Be sure to check out some of these affordable and fun restaurants while staying on St. Maarten. And if you uncover any other interesting and reasonably priced places, please let us know, as we’re always looking to make our guests’ stays on the island as enjoyable as possible.