Welcome to the 93rd instalment of the Caribbean Aviation Thread.This instalment is dedicated to the extremely renowned island of Sint Maarten/St. Martin!
Often referred to as the crossroads of the Caribbean, St. Maarten is located at the northern end of the Lesser Antilles, approximately 150 miles southeast of Puerto Rico. The island is divided roughly 60/40 between France and the Kingdom of the Netherlands, however, the Dutch side has the larger population. It is one of the smallest sea islands divided between two nations, a division dating to 1648. The southern Dutch part comprises Sint Maarten and is one of four constituent countries that form the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
The 37-square-mile island of St. Maarten was first settled by the Arawaks and was discovered by Christopher Columbus on behalf of Spain in 1493. Columbus sighted the island on November 11th, the holy day of St. Martin of Tours, and so named the island after him. For the next 150 years the island was passed between Holland, England, France and Spain. The old stone forts that guard many of the island's inlets are proof of the island's turbulent past. In 1648 St. Maarten was peacefully divided between Holland and France, and today is the smallest landmass in the world to be shared by two sovereign nations.
However, St. Maarten is most famous for its exciting "aviation-savvy" Maho Beach! The short length of the main runway at Princess Juliana International Airport, and its position between a large hill and a powdery white sanded beach inevitably results in some spectacular low approaches.
Thousands of aviation photographers from around the globe flock to this tiny island to capture spectacular pictures as well as experience the euphoria of large aircraft screaming over their heads. The famous Sunset Bar and Grill is always packed with aviation thrill seekers and photographers. Each morning, bar staff write the day's flight schedule on a surf board (original Caribbean fasion) and broadcast air traffic control instead of music. One thing is for sure; if you're a die-hard aviation enthusiast, SXM is definitely on your list of places to visit!
The famous "DANGER" sign
Roman Abramovich's B763ER giving the sunbathers a good sandblasting.
Photo © Timo Breidenstein
Photo © Manny Gonzalez - Thrust Images
Photo © Cary Liao
Photo © Jet Visuals
Photo © Rotate
Photo © Trent R Sellers
Long live SXM!!!!!!
AA's 4x weekly B738 JFK-ANU service successfully inaugurated.
CAL successfully inaugurates 2x weekly GND-JFK upgraded to 3x weekly.
CAL operating JFK-GEO-JFK with NA 763ER for winter season.
GEO poised to begin US$138M upgrade of GEO which includes new terminal and 8 jetway bridges.
Tropic Air of Belize takes delivery of two brand new Cessna 208 Caravans fitted with G1000 avionics.
Tropic Air looking to expand with large turboprop aircraft.
Cessna C152 enroute from POS-GEO crash lands in rich field in Guyana...no fatalities.
Redjet trunk investor says airline needs US$8M to reach set financial targets.
CAL chairman creates confusion over CAL financials with loose statements.
Redjet threatens to pull headquarters from BGI.
Redjet introduces new 2x weekly GEO-ANU service with its MD-82.
Redjet receives 3rd MD-82 aircraft (ex N562AA) named Nickitastic!
LI pilots strike after former LIALPA president Micheal Blackburn is fired. Cripples airline over 2 day period.
CAL inaugurates KIN-MIA service with B738 4x weekly (to go daily in February).
JALPA attempts to strike against CAL but actions are blocked by the Jamaican Industrial Disputes Tribunal.
DAE adds MD-83, initially using it on daily SXM-SDQ service.
CAL obtains route rights TO FLY BGI-GEO and BGI-SLU.
CAL's BGI-GEO service inaugurated with B738.
Six self-checkin kiosks now operational at POS. CAL sole customer thus far.
EZJet of Guyana begins JFK service with leased B762ER 6x weekly. Loads very encouraging.
Thomson Airways (TUI) inaugurates new bi-weekly ARN-BGI service with B763ER.
CAL takes delivery of second ATR-72-600 series (9Y-TTB) Dec.18th, 2011 @ POS.
CAL's BW500/501 service switched from Ryan International 763 to VS A333.
MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL CONTRIBUTORS
[Edited 2011-12-18 22:26:24]