Hotel happenings around St. Maarten

Flying in

New this winter in St. Maarten is United Airlines weekly flight from Chicago (OHare), which bolsters the airlift to the island.

Other flights also include Americans two daily flights from New York (Kennedy), with continuing service from Miami; US Airways daily flights from Philadelphia and Charlotte, N.C.; and American Eagles schedule of eight daily flights from San Juan.

Meanwhile, Stage II of the Princess Juliana airport expansion is on target for completion in mid-2006. The new 300,000-square-foot facility, with four levels and four runways, will be able to handle 2.5 million passengers a year. -- G.N.M.

PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten -- Hotel news on St. Maarten includes the reopening of Great Bay Beach Hotel & Casino, a $10 million expansion at Caravanserai Beach Resort and plans on both the Dutch and French side by Orient-Express Hotels.

Great Bay Beach Hotel & Casinos recent renovation program included upgrades to all public areas and guest rooms, two new restaurants and a third infinity pool near the beach.

Caravanserai Beach Resort plans to add 150 more rooms in four separate buildings at a cost of $10 million. The resort also will open its own casino.

On the French side, Orient-Express Hotels, the parent corporation of La Samanna hotel, announced a villa development project on the cliffside adjacent to La Samanna. The fist phase will include 10 Mediterranean-style villas with outdoor terraces and private pools.

The firm also is expected to unveil its plans for a 12-acre project on the Dutch side that will feature a marina, retail shops and condominium units.

For island information, visit www.st-maarten.com.

To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Gay Nagle Myers at [email protected].

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