St Barth’s – Restaurants, Beach Bars and Partying
St Barth’s – Restaurants, Beach Bars and Partying
St Barth’s is often referred to as the gastronomic epicentre of the Caribbean. And with it’s ‘Billionaire’s playground’ credentials, there’s a lot to live up to in the partying stakes too.
The social scene in St Barth’s revolves predominantly around beach life. Think chic, daytime al fresco dining, at trendy beach bars and restaurants. In the evening, world class restaurants with exceptional French chefs is de rigueur, all accompanied by beautiful sea views of course. The clientele generally consists of wall to wall celebrities, last time I was at Cheval Blanc, Goldie Hawn, Kate Hudson and their entourage of Hollywood babes were lounging and partying by the pool.
If you want to know where the jet set hang out, keep reading for The Style Traveller style guide to St Barth’s….
Located in the original location of the famous Hotel Saint Barth’s, Isle de France, the achingly hip and exclusive Cheval Blanc Hotel is part of the prestigious LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy) fashion group . So expect nothing less than immaculate service, incredible food and an uber trendy, chic atmosphere. The crowd is an elite mix of wealthy islanders, yacht people, Style Traveller’s (of course) and hotel guests, who reside in the 40 luxury, private villas and suites.
I visited Cheval Blanc for a languid afternoon of lounging by the pool and indulging in a delicious, healthy, three course lunch, with cocktails and champagne pairings. Keep scrolling to get the low down…
The interiors at Cheval Blanc are pristine, white washed, elegant spaces, decorated with natural wood furnishings. A signature tone of soft, conch-shell pink runs through all the decor, glass ware and menus. Dine in the main restaurant, on the beach or by the pool, the view from every aspect of this sleek venue is a feast for the eyes.
The restaurant at Cheval Blanc, Le Case de l’Isle is one of the most sought after reservations on St Barth’s. Make sure you book in advance if you want one of the exclusive tables for lunch or a romantic dinner. Run by chef Yann Vinsot, expect exceptional seafood and Caribbean-inspired, French cuisine. The whole experience is a culinary delight. I went for the lobster catch of the day, pictured above. The menu is filled with an array of healthy to hearty options, which is sure to please all.
Above: At the table drinking a lychee collins cocktail in the signature pink glassware. Even the sand filled, record sleeve, menu has a beach theme. Sunglasses by Le Specs, Ring by Soru Jewellery.
And after sunset enjoy a signature cocktail by the pool, made with rum of course! (pictured below). Thanks for a lovely day Cheval Blanc!
Eden Rock – St Barth’s (pictured above)
Carved into the rocks, jutting out into the turquoise seas, like a location from a Bond movie, Eden Rock is something of a St Barth’s institution. As you land on the tiny island (most likely in your private jet) the coral, white and glass structure is one of the first things you’ll see.
Owned by the Matthews family, from which you may know Spencer Matthews from TV’s Made In Chelsea, Eden Rock is a place to see and be seen. The crowd is mainly affluent islanders, tourists straight off their yachts and rich party kids, stopping by for dinner before heading out to the clubs. Getting a table at ‘On The Rocks’ restaurant is notoriously difficult, but once you’re there it’s well worth the effort.
The oriental themed interiors of the restaurant are in keeping with the French/asian fusion menu. Dark mahogany decking and furnishings are accented with rich vermillion tones. It feels akin to being on board a beautiful, luxury, wooden sailing boat. The split level interiors mean that all the tables in the house have beautiful, uninterrupted views of the blue sea. On the speakers the trance beat of Ibiza-style house tunes makes the atmosphere club-like, keeping diners uplifted and in the party spirit.
I was very lucky to get a romantic table with a stunning sea view for my 4 course, fine dining extravaganza. The menu reads like an A to Z of the worlds most expensive ingredients including caviar, truffles, foie gras, lobster, you get the gist. We started with champagne aperitifs, followed by artichoke, black truffle and foie gras ravioli in a truffle emulsion. My main course was a melt in your mouth, sake caramelised black cod with yuzu turnip (pictured above) followed by the Caribbean chocolate pie with salted caramel ice cream, ending with a selection of cheeses. Style Traveller tip? Chocolate lovers MUST try the chocolate pie! (pictured below) It’s to die for!
I’m not quite sure how you’re supposed to go partying after all that food, I went into a bit of a food coma to be honest. Luckily the local island taxis (all of which are Porsche Cayennes) were on hand to take me home. But for those in need of a little more adventure, there’s plenty of late night partying to be had….
After Dark in St Barth’s
The party scene in St Barth’s is a decadent affair to say the least, with a star studded cast filled with celebs, models and a host of the world’s glitterati. For dining, the best places to see all the action are Eden Rock, Cheval Blanc and Bagatelle. Or for romantic dinners for two go to Bartolemew Restaurant at Le Guanahani.
For a little cabaret entertainment head to Le Ti, for dinner around 10pm – 11pm and stay for the rest of the evening. Alternatively Nikki Beach starts hotting up at around 1am if you fancy a spot of dancing around the pool. The cool crowd head to different bars and restaurants on different nights of the week, it’s a bit of a party circuit, dependant on season. So ask the concierge at your hotel or the trendy people on the day bed next to you, where’s hot that evening. Then party the night away. Enjoy!