St. Maarten-St. Martin Tourism continues steady recovery with new flights and hotel reopenings
The tourism industry in St. Maarten-St. Martin continues to recover at a rapid pace as airlines add new service to The Friendly Island and hotels reopen following the passage of Hurricanes Irma and Maria last September.
American Airlines recently announced that it has increased seat capacity on their daily flight from Miami upgrading their Miami International Airport (MIA) – Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM) route to a Boeing 737-800 aircraft, accommodating 160 passengers. In addition, American Airlines will be adding a daily nonstop flight to St. Maarten from its hub at Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) starting November 4th, 2018, as well as a second daily nonstop from Miami effective December 19th, 2018. Both new flights are currently bookable and will be operated by Airbus A319 aircraft with a capacity of 128 passengers.
Flights Already Resumed
American Airlines is the latest to announce new service to St. Maarten. St. Maarten’s Princess Juliana Airport (SXM) continues to report great progress in terms of improved connectivity as the year progresses. As of May 2018, two-thirds of all carriers that provided flights to and from the award-winning airport have resumed regular service. From the United States, travelers can fly to St. Maarten with United Airlines, American Airlines, JetBlue, Delta Air Lines, Spirit Airlines, and Seaborne Airlines. Service from Toronto is available on WestJet, and Dominican carrier Air Century, and Panama-based Copa Airlines have returned as well.
“Due to the collaborative efforts by all stakeholders and the community at large, St. Maarten has been able to make a quick turnaround,” said St. Maarten Minister of Tourism, Cornelius De Weever. “We are grateful to the return of all airlines and the reopening of our properties.”
“This shows the confidence American Airlines has in the comeback of St. Maarten/St. Martin, the public and private sector have been working continuously with American Airlines to ensure that the flights return in a balanced way complementing the re-opening of various accommodations,” added St. Maarten’s Interim Head of Tourism, May-Ling Chun.
Hotels & Activities
As of May 2018, there are just under 2,000 bookable rooms available across the entire island. 122 villas and condos are open for business island-wide, boutique hotels and guest houses are ready to accommodate travelers, and several larger properties have conducted soft openings in order to welcome back guests. Amongst the larger properties, Divi Little Bay Beach Resort, Simpson Bay Resorts & Marina and Oyster Bay Beach Resort opened their doors. Many of these properties are currently offering promotional discounts for travel through the end of 2018. Additionally, Sonesta also announced projected openings for the Sonesta Ocean Point Resort and the Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Spa scheduled for November 15, 2018 and February 1, 2019, respectively.
87% of all on-island activities are also available for guests to enjoy. Popular offerings at Aqua Mania Adventures, Flavors of St. Maarten, Rainforest Adventures, Lee’s Deep Sea Fishing, the Topper’s Rhum Distillery and more are open to visitors looking to experience fun and unforgettable times and do more than just relax on one of St. Maarten’s 37 stunning beaches. For those looking to get a taste of St. Maarten’s famous cuisine, the vast majority of restaurants on the Dutch side are open, especially along the Front Street, Boardwalk, Simpson Bay and Maho Stripes, providing travelers with a wide range of gastronomic options.