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stmaarten-ad2Since 1995, Sam & Barbara Fusco's book, The Value Guide of St. Maarten/St. Martin has provided an imaginative and visual glimpse of this wonderful exciting island to tourists from 204 countries and territories around the world. This savvy travelers' guide overflows with valuable information on the world’s smallest island shared by two democratic nations including family fun activities, profiles on hotels, restaurants, villa rentals, real estate investments, restaurant recipes, duty-free shopping, the best beaches, island weddings, water sports, exciting nightlife, casinos, car rentals, health spas, deep sea fishing, sailing, scuba diving, regattas, cyber cafes, hospitals, doctors, dentists, pharmacies, religious services, entertainment, and beautiful island photos.

St. Maarten, the Dutch side of the island, became an independent country in October 2010. St. Martin, the French side, is a territory of France. Together, they are located in the Eastern Caribbean Sea and are encircled by 37 cottony white sandy beaches caressed by emerald blue/green waters under pastel skies. On several beaches, rock formations jut into the sea creating scenic beauty tempting adventurous explorers. Standing in crystal clear water up to your chin, you can still see seashells on the sandy bottom and small tropical fish swimming around you. Warm breezes, daily sunshine, palm trees, a tropical climate, incredible beaches, challenging water sports, exciting casinos, wonderful resorts, fabulous restaurants, and a relaxing lifestyle will tame the workaholic in you. After 48 hours on the island, you will ask your friends or loved ones, “What day is today?” because, you will have lost all track of time!

The authors started vacationing on St. Maarten/St. Martin in 1978 and since then, they have visited approximately 70 times. For the last decade, they’ve spent ten weeks each year on island and consider it their second home. Included within these pages are their personal experiences, recommendations and tips to make your vacation or holiday a memorable occasion. The 183 page Value Guide is the island's most comprehensive travel guide! Loaded with valuable and interesting tourist information for families as well as couples, it's the ideal companion for your trip to paradise. Enjoy The Value Guide. It's absolutely FREE! Go! Make memories!

--Click here to download a FREE copy of The Value Guide... 

As mentioned above, Barbara and I first visited “The Friendly Island” in 1978 with some friends who had been there before. We liked it, but it didn’t become our top travel destination. In the next few years, we visited Aruba, Puerto Rico, Bermuda, and the Bahamas complimented by numerous trips to Europe. In fact, it was a few years before we returned to St. Maarten/St. Martin. Eventually, we went back again and began enjoying it more and more. Over the years, we met many local people and developed friendships; and, people began greeting us with, “Welcome Home!”

Little by little, the island started to grow on us. We began to visit twice a year and sometimes three times annually. When we couldn’t go to Europe or felt like a quick getaway, we would go to “The Friendly Island” and visit the “sugar birds” at La Samanna Resort. Now, approximately 70 trips later, it is our #1 travel destination and our second home. Now, we are there twice a year for five weeks or longer each trip; and, the wonderful memories and fun just continue to grow. Read “Why We Love St. Maarten/St. Martin” for additional thoughts. For us, writing about St. Maarten/St. Martin is truly a labor of love.

What totally amazes us is that we are now celebrating the 20th Anniversary of The Value Guide and our web site, We first published The Value Guide in May 1995 as a 128 page French/English soft cover book, which was sold via the Internet in 14 countries. In September 1995, our web site went live. Since then, our book and web site have achieved significant visibility and readership worldwide. Today, more than 2,000,000 people from 204 countries and territories, all of the Canadian Provinces, and 49 of the 50 United States have visited

The Value Guide is produced electronically from our web site. And, thanks to the Internet, we are able to frequently update the Guide’s content so that it remains timely and fresh. As mentioned, profiles of island businesses and island information are continually added to; so, you may wish to make us your home page. Also, consider subscribing to our bimonthly newsletter, The StMaarten/StMartin Connection, to stay on top of “What’s Happening in Paradise.” Have a wonderful vacation/holiday, make beautiful memories, and don’t forget to recommend us to your friends, family and colleagues.


Barbara & Sam Fusco

Winner of the 2006/2007 St. Maarten Hospitality and Trade Association's 
Crystal Pineapple Award for Outstanding Tourism Journalism
Former Board Member of the St. Maarten/St. Martin American Marketing Association 



Wanna B, skippered by local sailor Jan vanden Eynde won the St. Maarten/St. Martin Cup for Most Worthy Performance Overall of the 38th St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, racing in Caribbean Sailing Association class 4.  Facing a fleet of 11 boats in seven races spread out over the three days.  Vanden Eynde and crew recorded three first-place finishes, one second, one third, one fourth and, as one race is tossed, the one fifth place did not count.  [ ... ]

Island News
One Love Reggae Concert will 'Move and Groove' for Carnival

St. Maarten Carnival Development Foundation (SCDF) has put together a reggae line-up that it says will “groove and move you all in the right ways” for Carnival 2018.  This is the third consecutive year that SCDF has taken it upon itself to host the popular reggae concert for Carnival.  The line-up will feature love reggae crooners Sanchez, Etana and Christopher Martin, complemented by dancehall stars Aidonia Ishawna.  “We wanted to give [ ... ]

Island News
St.Maarten Distilleries to Launch Locally-Produced Soualiga Rum

St. Maarten Distillers set out to add some diversification to the local economy when it commercially distilling and bottling its own line of locally made rums in the country under the brand – Soualiga Rum.  The company currently produces ten flavours of rums at its Simpson Bay distillery from scratch.  The flavours are Mango, Guava, White Rhum, Pineapple, Coconut Ginger, Vodka, Aged Rhum, Passion Fruit, Black Cake and Havana Mojito Blend.  [ ... ]

Island News
Belair Beach Hotel Welcomes First Guests at Soft Opening

Belair Beach Hotel has reopened its doors to welcome its first guests since Hurricane Irma struck the island in September 2017.  The hotel had its soft opening last week.  This milestone in the hotel’s as well as St. Maarten recovery was celebrated with guests, staff and Prime Minister Leona Romeo-Marlin.  Twenty four of the hotel’s 70 rooms were severely damaged by Irma.   Diligent work by the hotel management and staff right [ ... ]

Island News

Based On discussions at the recently concluded Seatrade Cruise Global Conference in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Port of St. Maarten management discussed the industry outlook along with the forecast for St. Maarten specifically.  “Though in its infancy stage, the cruise industry will see approximately 27.2 million passengers cruise in 2018 globally.  Port of St. Maarten will play a pivotal role in the overall Eastern Caribbean offering great experiences [ ... ]

Island News

Air France announces last week that it is resuming its non-stop flight schedule between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and St. Maarten’s Princess Juliana International Airport SXM.  Two special non-stop flights for the Christmas holiday period will operate between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Airport SXM on December 23, 2017, and January 6, 2018 according to the airline press statement.    From January 13 to March 26, 2018, the end of 2017-2018 [ ... ]

Island News


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