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Gear Up & Countdown For The 32nd Annual St. Maarten Heineken Regatta; Events Scheduled March 1 - 4, 2012

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PRESS RELEASE #191


PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten (Nov. 17, 2011) - Avid sailors and enthusiasts gear up and prepare for some fun in the sun and racing during the 32nd Annual St. Maarten Heineken Regatta. The traditional three-day event, scheduled March 1 - 4, 2012, kicks off the racing season with two pre-events, the Gill Commodores Cup on March 1st which is a one-day race for spinnaker classes only and the Budget Marine Match Racing Cup a one-day match racing event on Feb 28th which will bring the world's best Match Racers to the island for a day of intense sailing. These events take place prior to the St.Maarten Heineken Regatta which will rev race-goers up for the main event.

The annual St. Maarten Heineken Regatta has become a world-wide, one-of-a-kind sailing event with exciting entertainment, musical performances and parties that has attracted tens of thousands of sailors and enthusiasts over the years. The actual competition consists of round-the-buoys contests and point-to-point destination races against the backdrop of St. Maarten's breathtaking coastal views.

Each night during the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, there is a veritable battle of the bands, with the celebration ending with an awards ceremony on Sunday night. Famous headliners previously have included The Black Eyed Peas, Ziggy Marley, The Wailers, Shaggy, The Marley Brothers, Jimmy Cliff and Wyclef Jean.

St. Maarten has it all, from cafés and sizzling beachside barbecues; boutique hotels and high-rise resorts and some of the best shopping and nightlife in the Caribbean, there is truly something for everyone.

Sailing enthusiasts and competitors from around the world will join this year's St.Maarten Heineken Regatta, including many local names that are familiar and long-time Caribbean racers such as Ian Hope-Ross's Beneteau First 36.7, Kick 'em Jenny; Richard Wesslund's J/120, El Ocaso; Sergio Sagramoso's latest Lazy Dog, a Grand Soleil 54; and the Melges 24, Budget Marine/Gill.

The St. Maarten Heineken Regatta will also showcase some of the grandest, most impressive super-yachts participating in the Caribbean 600 ocean race. This remarkable contingent included Aegir II, a Carbon Ocean 82; Bella Pita, a Tripp 75; I-SEA, a Farr 78; the Swan 100, Varsovie; and POS, a Reichel/Pugh 78 in 2011.

For more information about the regatta or to keep informed about the bands performing at the event visit www.heinekenregatta.com. For more information on St. Maarten visit the official site of the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau at www.VacationStMaarten.com.

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 on Twitter at http://twitter.com/StMaartenTravel. For more information, visit www.VacationStMaarten.com.

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