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mav75
Topic Author
Posts: 172
Joined: Mon Dec 25, 2000 10:02 am

Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Mon Aug 27, 2007 11:13 am

Hello all,

I've seen many amazing shots of low landings at SXM. I'd love to plan a vacation out there if I can convince my wife to go with me. Here are my questions:

Where does everybody stay?
What hotels does everyone like best?
Which hotel faces the approach into SXM?
Best places to eat/drink?
Any other activities besides planespotting?

I'm curious to see what everyone says. Any input would be greatly appreciated!
 
dagolden1
Posts: 46
Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2004 1:04 pm

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Mon Aug 27, 2007 12:49 pm

I was actually wondering this same thing recently as I'm looking for somewhere to go for my 30th birthday (which is Dec. 31st) but wasn't sure about the place. I researched it a little and was wondering if there is a difference in the French side and the Dutch side? I know the airport is on the Dutch side and would love to personally sit there and watch the big planes come in but was also wondering if the rest of the island is worth seeing?

Any info on personal experiences and recommendations would be helpful and greatly appreciated.
 
anax
Posts: 84
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2006 3:20 pm

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:13 pm

i'm planning SXM for early february.
any info i find , will let you know.
god is a spotter!!!
 
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CaptSkibi
Posts: 124
Joined: Sat May 01, 2004 7:15 am

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:42 pm

I've been to Sint Maarten twice on business, staying an entire week the first time and 1/2 a week the 2nd time. Each time, I've stayed at the Maho Beach Casino & Resort. It's just up the road from the runway threshold and faces the approach. The hotel is very nice and is featured in a great many pictures here on A.net. It was also quite convenient since it does have guest car parking and is close to the airport, where my business took place.


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Photo © Miguel Nobrega - Madeira Spotters
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Photo © Serge Bailleul - AirTeamImages
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Photo © Serge Bailleul - AirTeamImages



Also a bonus is being able to walk to the Sunset Beach Bar!
Private Pilot, Airplane Single Engine Land / former frequent flyer with 9 straight years being elite on NW/DL
 
chase
Posts: 658
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:02 pm

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Mon Aug 27, 2007 8:35 pm

Quoting CaptSkibi (Reply 3):
I've been to Sint Maarten twice on business

I am obviously in the wrong business. What do you do?

Does anyone know if there is good scuba diving on Sint Maarten? My wife is a diver, but I have never gone (taking a class next month). She wants to plan a dive trip for December/January, and I'm wondering if SXM might be a good place, so I could squeeze in a little planespotting, and horizontal-fence-holding, too  Smile
 
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CaptSkibi
Posts: 124
Joined: Sat May 01, 2004 7:15 am

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Mon Aug 27, 2007 9:30 pm

Quoting Chase (Reply 4):
I am obviously in the wrong business. What do you do?

My company produces upper-air meteorology equipment, and I am in charge of international installations, training, and support. I'm not sure how to post pictures from my profile, but I have uploaded two pictures there that show my equipment at SXM.

Let me tell you, it was real tough being down there for a total of a week and a half with my hotel being so close to Sunset Beach, the approach, and the Sunset Beach Bar.  sarcastic 

I'm not sure about the scuba diving at Sint Maarten.
Private Pilot, Airplane Single Engine Land / former frequent flyer with 9 straight years being elite on NW/DL
 
Indio66
Posts: 403
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 10:22 am

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Mon Aug 27, 2007 9:44 pm

I have been there a couple of times. If you are interested in doing a lot of spoting, you need to stay near the airport, such as the Sonesta. A higher end option would be the La Samana. Traffic in SXM can be very, very tough. For example, it can be as much as an hour from the airport to over by where the Westin is located.

Their are bars on both sides of the beach at the end of the runway. Its a blast to sit out their and watch the planes come in.

The Dutch side is pretty Americanized, crowded and dirty. The French side is quite nice. There are a number of great restaurants in Grand Case and to a lesser extent Margiot.
 
dxBrian
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Mar 25, 2006 1:57 am

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Tue Aug 28, 2007 2:06 am

Here's a link to a dive shop on St. Maarten.
http://www.thescubashop.net/
 
YULYMX
Posts: 734
Joined: Fri May 12, 2006 10:53 pm

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Tue Aug 28, 2007 2:40 am

Maho beach resorts is great for Spotting... SSBB is nice spot...

B744 from Corsair WOW
 
TIA
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 3:42 am

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Tue Aug 28, 2007 3:54 am

Only spend a day or so at Maho planespotting. Rent a car and explore the island the rest of the time you're there. Obviously we are all aviation enthusiasts, but there is a limit for everything and SXM has so much more to offer.
 
TurkishWings
Posts: 1244
Joined: Fri May 12, 2006 5:57 pm

RE: Seeking SXM Planespotting Vacation Tips

Sat Sep 01, 2007 1:29 pm

Quoting Mav75 (Thread starter):

Where does everybody stay?

You have to stay at the Sonesta Beach Resort... Try to get an airport view room of you can....

Quoting Mav75 (Thread starter):
What hotels does everyone like best?

There are better hotels in the island but for us Sonesta is the best....

Quoting Mav75 (Thread starter):
Which hotel faces the approach into SXM?

Same as above.....

Quoting Mav75 (Thread starter):
Best places to eat/drink?

The sunset bar is awsome....You will be hanging out there most of the time esp in the afternoon when AF/KL and Americans arrive.... There is a very good sea food restaurant adjacent to the Sonesta hotel but the best restaurants are located in the French capital "Marigot". In here, you feel that you are in France... People actually do speak French here whereas in the Dutch side, the only language youhear is English.. Even most of the locals don't speak Dutch...

Quoting Mav75 (Thread starter):
Any other activities besides planespotting?

We rented a car to explore the island which turned out to be a great idea... It gives you the flexibility to watch the airport from different areas and you explore more beaches and casinos....
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