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St. Maarten 'Culinary Capital Of The Caribbean' Offers Over 365 Restaurants, One For Every Day Of The Year

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PRESS RELEASE #141


PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten (July 21, 2010) - St. Maarten (www.VacationStMaarten.com) keeps food lovers satisfied by offering over 365 different restaurants, one for every day of the year, creating a true epicurean adventure. The undisputed "Culinary Capital of the Caribbean" excites taste buds by bringing a variety of international cuisines to the table.

"Travelers can experience our culture and relax on one of our 37 beaches but the heart of St. Maarten lies in the enormous selection of dining options giving visitors a chance to explore the tastes of the world while visiting our island," said May-Ling Chun, interim Director of Tourism for the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau.

The following is just a sample of the variety of restaurants that offer a gastronomic experience for an international-style culinary getaway.

Since opening in 2009 in Philipsburg Sheer has become a dining hot spot on the island, hosting an eclectic mix of European and Asian influences with a touch of Caribbean taste. All dishes are carefully crafted to the highest levels of culinary standards. Sheer boasts a chic ambiance, spacious bar, a romantic lounge and an impressive vintage, walk-in wine cellar. Diners can indulge on the crab salad with avocado, apple and red pepper coulis for starters, then move to the seared duck breast with duck confit and parsnip ravioli in a port cherry reduction. Appetizers start at $12, with entrees from $28. For more information, visit www.SheerRestaurant.com or call (599) 542-9635.

Rare, a culinary haven, offers traditional steakhouse dining. Indulge in a Porter House, Filet or Rib Eye with truffle mashed potatoes for the main entrée. Rare creates a sweet ending with their delectable desserts such as the Crème brulee apple pie with berry coulis and toasted spice crumble. Entrees from $25 and desserts are $12. For more information, visit www.DareToBeRare.com or call (599) 545-5714.

La Gondola in Cupecoy Beach allows guests to enjoy a romantic atmosphere while dining on homemade pasta and other classic Italian dishes filled with the finest ingredients - all which feature an acute attention to detail. Enjoy traditional favorites such as the antipasto served with homemade salami, Parma ham, sweet roasted peppers and grilled eggplant - all marinated in extra virgin olive oil. For a true Italian treat, try the gnocchi di patate alla crema delicata di gorgonzola, fresh homemade potato dumplings with gorgonzola cheese sauce. Average main dish prices range from $18 - $34. To view the full menu, visit www.LaGondola-SXM.com or call (599) 545-3938.

Shivsagar in Philipsburg is where Indian food lovers flock while in St. Maarten. The restaurant offers authentic Indian dishes such as appetizers like Samosas (crispy patties stuffed with potatoes and vegetables), entrees such as the Tandoori Chooza (spring chicken marinated in a special blend of spices and barbecued to perfection), and dessert like Gulab Jamun (deep fried khoyan with sugar syrup). Appetizers start at $4.75 with entrees from $10.75 and dessert from $4.75. For more information, visit Shivsagar online at www.ShivsagarSXM.com or call (599) 542-2299.

Bamboo Bernie's provides "New York Style Sushi with a Caribbean Twist." Try one of their impeccable sushi rolls like the Maui Wowi Roll made up of king crab, lobster tempura, avocado and topped with two types of caviar. Sushi rolls range from $5 - $17 per roll. After dinner, head to Bamboo Bernie's Buddha Lounge for drinks and dancing. Visit Bamboo Bernie's online at www.BambooBernies.net or call (599) 545-3622.

Experience delicious Mexican fare at Jimbo's Rock & Blue Café. Jimbo's serves authentic Mexican dishes with a spicy twist. Begin with the Nachos Grande Deluxe - a generous amount of blue, yellow and red corn tortilla chips topped with ground beef, melted cheddar and Monterey Jack, black olives, jalapeno peppers, homemade refried beans, guacamole and sour cream. For an entree, savor the grouper stuffed con crab cake chipotle, a tender sautéed grouper stuffed with crab cake chipotle covered in a creamy lobster sauce served with a choice of French fries, Spanish rice or garlic mashed potatoes and fresh steamed vegetables. For a delectable dessert, Jimbo's offers a Banana Jimbojanga, a banana flambéed in Captain Morgans Rum, rolled into a flour tortilla and deep friend until golden brown served with vanilla ice cream and passion fruit glaze. Appetizers start at $3, entrees from $12 and desserts from $6. For more information, visit www.JimbosCafe.com or call (599) 544-3600.

For a true Caribbean experience, diners will enjoy Taloula Mango's Caribbean Café on Great Bay Beach promenade. The extensive menu hosts a variety of dishes from salads and sandwiches to their signature Philipsburger or the "Good Ass Ribs." Main dishes range from $7 - $22. For more information, visit www.TaloulaMango.com or call (599) 542-1645.

To experience the best breakfast on the island go to Zee Best Bakery/Le Piccolo. A 26-year veteran of St. Maarten, Zee Best has provided its customers with a classic breakfast that's known for quality, freshness and great taste. Diners can nosh on a selection of over 20 different types of pastries ranging from croissants, fruit danishes and fresh fruits to omelets, juices, coffees and teas. Breakfast is served daily from 7:30 am - 2:00 pm and lunch from 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm. Prices range from $9 - $10. For more information, visit www.ZeeBestRestaurant.com or call (599) 544-2477.

St. Maarten

St. Maarten is the smallest island in the world to be shared by two nations, Kingdom of the Netherlands and France, creating a European-influenced vibe with a Caribbean flair. As "the culinary capital of the Caribbean," St. Maarten offers an eclectic array of cuisine fusion for food lovers with more than 365 restaurants, one for each day of the year to satisfy the tastes of every palate and pocketbook.

Located at the northern end of the Lesser Antilles, the island's 37 square miles has 37 breathtaking beaches and is home to many historical and family-oriented attractions. During the day, watersport enthusiasts can take full advantage of the island's scuba diving and snorkeling facilities. The capital of Philipsburg offers duty-free shopping with a bustling city atmosphere, while 14 casinos and numerous nightclubs provide endless entertainment.

Accommodations are varied and include elegant private villas, family oriented resorts, quaint cottages and luxury spa resorts. Air service is available to Princess Juliana International Airport from numerous U.S. and Canadian cities as well as from Europe, South America and the Caribbean.

Find St. Maarten on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/VacationStMaarten and follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/StMaartenTravel.

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