Anguilla News: November 1995
News reports from on the island, as they were posted to the Net:
Forbes Ranks Cap Juluca Tops
The readers of Forbes magazine again rated Cap Juluca
on Anguilla among the Top 20 resorts in the world!
In fact, it ranked 7th, behind Four Seasons/Nevis (5th) and
Little Dix Bay/BVI (6th). The top two resort hotels were in Italy!
The government has given Cap Juluca permission to dredge
Maundays Bay of the sand that was eroded from the beach.
Under proper environmental supervision of course.
Restoration work at the Malliouhana has been going on at a fantastic pace.
The rumors you hear are unbelievable: 200 people on-site
working to get everything ready for a November 17th reopening,
millions of dollars spent, complete new landscaping,
full grown palm trees lining the entry drive that were
shipped in via containers at enormous expense, specialists
imported from Kentucky installing new spas, ... it never ends.
Lots of Restaurants Open
Hibernia Restaurant has re-opened (closed Mondays, no reservations needed since they
still don't have telephone service).
Cinammon Reef restaurant re-opened. I had lunch 3 times recently
at Koal Keel - great!
Lots of Hotels Open
The beach at Shoal Bay is starting to have a bit of a tourist crowd
again. I met ladies from Washington D.C. this
weekend who came to Anguilla because there time-share in
St. Martin wasn't available.
Arawak, Allamanda, Caribella, Easy Corner Villas, Lloyds,
Casa Nadine (stay in Anguilla for $20 a night), Ferry Boat,
Fountain Beach, Harbour Villas,
La Sirena, Masara, Paradise Cove, Pineapple Beach, Rendevous
Bay, Sea Feathers Resort (although the telephone poles don't
quite reach there yet -- I saw a crew out putting them in today),
and Spindrift are open. Cap Juluca is scheduled for December 15,
Cove Castles, Coccolobo and
Casablanca are scheduled for January.
Everyone else is shooting to be open for Thanksgiving.
New Governer Says "Anguilla Is Open for Business"
Alan Hoole was sworn in November 3rd as the new Governer of
Anguilla. In his welcome speech he made a point of declaring
that Anguilla was open for business. The Governer had served
in Anguilla before as Attorney General and knows the island
Hurricane Luis and Anguillian Beekeeping
Until 1994 Anguilla was one of the few Caribbean islands
where honey bees (Apis mellifera) had not been
introduced. With assistance from British development funds,
Quentin Henderson, the "Beeman" of Nevis, introduced
25 nucleus colonies to Anguilla at
monthly intervals between November 1993 and December 1994.
Anguilla has a very low rainfall level and there was concern
as to how the bees would survive in the dry climate. But
the experiment was a success. Polination by the bees has
improved the output of local agricultural crops, as well as
producing hundreds of pounds of income-generating honey.
A revolving fund was set up so that income could be
used to buy more honey containers and pay for about 1/2 of
the honey extracting equipment. Slowly a tiny industry was
emerging on a dry island not noted for many agricultural
products. Anguillans are especially proud of a honey product
that is so special to their island.
The beeyard was set up in a field beneath a row of beautiful
Neem trees, behind the Dept. of Agriculture. As Hurricane
Luis approached, the staff did their best fo safeguard
all the livestock, including a small rabbit breeding venture.
Several hives were picked up and placed in the honey
extracting shed. Others were weighted down with very heavy
rocks. Alas, it was a flash flood that drowned most of the bees,
even though most hives were standing on concrete blocks. Limbs
and branches from the shady Neem trees were wrenched from their
trunks and knocked some of the hives over. That beautiful
line of trees, probably over 100 years old, is now a
completely torn asunder.
Plans are underway to get Anguillian beekeeping up and running
once again. It will take a bit of money, time, effort, and
cooperation. Quentin can ferry up new nucleus bee colonies
from Nevis two at a time on LIAT (maximum allowed as hand
baggage) or charter a small plane to bring them all at once.
But it will cost about $1350 US to get this industry on
its feet again. Anyone interested in donating to this worthy
cause, let me know by email.
Anguilla Has Own Internet Node
Courtesy of Cable and Wireless we now have our own local
node on the Internet, consisting of Sun sparcstation and
Cisco router. Reliability of the link has improved drastically
since the installation of routing equipment on the island.
(Previously we dialed to Antigua on unconditioned lines and
used their link, but disconnects were frequent).
Iguanas Drop In
Since the hurricane Iguanas have been spotted (and captured)
on the south coast from Junks Hole to Corito). These appear to
be a new species, not the iguanas occasionally spotted in
the Brimegen area on Anguilla's north coast. Current theory
is that they migrated to Anguilla by holding on to some of
the many logs that have beached themselves. An iguana
specialist is coming to the island to identify them, as there
is a lively debate among iguana-philes about how they spread
from island to island.
New Nightspots in Anguilla
We have our two single nieces visiting for a month from
Canada, so we have in-depth news on Anguillian night life.
Sandy Ground is now very efficient. You can walk from Johhnos
to Ripples or the new Pumphouse club (in a
historic building left over from the salt business). If one is
dead, the other may be hopping. If the live music really starts
jammin at Johhnos, the crowd magically reforms there (although there is
now a $5 cover charge that includes a ticket for one basic
bar drink). The Pumphouse doesn't
have a cover and stays open after Johhnos closes. And
Mirrors is a new disco bar above the Vista Food Market.
It opens at
6:30 PM, warms up late, and stays open until the last person leaves.
In the morning you could crawl over to Uncle Ernies
on Shoal Bay and ask Michael to make you an R and R
(the Rhoda and Robin).
Scotiabank Has Cash Machine
Scotiabank has moved to a new location in the Fairplay
Center, complete with Anguilla's first drive up
bank window and Anguilla's first cash machine (although
it isn't connected to the international banking network yet).
Will the entire island be ruined now? Telephone: 809-497-3333.
Malliouhana Hotel Reopens
The Malliouhana Hotel reopened on schedule, November 17th.
Everyone is happy that they finally reopened.
The hotel has been sucking up most of the resources on
the island in order to remodel, regarden, and re-equip:
contractors, gardeners, carpenters, boat shops, ... .
The gardens have been completely replanted with container
after container of adult plants.
Meads Bay is much narrower than before the hurricane,
especially in front of the Carimar. It may be
difficult to find room for the many food booths and the huge
crowd that gathers for the
August's boat races.
Blanshards Restaurant Reopens
We went to Blanshards for dinner this week and it was
up to their reputation for elegant food. After the hurricane,
the Blanshards thought the plants in their garden were all dead.
So, they ordered a container load of new plants from Miami.
By the time the new plants arrived, the old plants had revived.
Now their garden is twice as lush as before -- very nice effect.
After dinner we enjoyed the gardens and watched the
diners from the Malliouhana whisked back to their rooms
on golf carts!
Dive Shop To Reopen in Two Weeks
Tamarain Watersports has rebuilt and will be open for
scuba diving and instruction in two weeks. They have to wait
for their dive boat to be repaired because
the Malliouhana has the repair shop tied up with their boats.
More Restaurant News
Cyril's Fish House reopened in Island Harbour today.
Open for dinner every night - same great chef as last year.
Smitty says he has bought the incomplete restaurant
and land on the beach in Island Harbour and is rebuilding:
a toes in the sand "shack" and an expanded in-door experience.
Ships Galley has reopened in Sandy Ground.
Bad news: Jackie of Tropical Penguin is still here
in Anguilla, but her
restaurant was blown to bits and she isn't planning
to reopen -- a major loss. Tropical Penguin will be missed.
We have good reports of a
new Chinese Restaurant. The
Anguillian directions to find it: below the Chief Ministers house,
toward back road. The tourist directions:
go west past the Sandy Ground roundabout, past the Blowing
Point turn off, turn right in about 1/2 mile at the Chinese
Restaurant sign (you will be headed toward the cliff overlooking
Ferry Service Back to Normal
Every half-hour, or so, between Blowing Point and Marigot.
Reservations not taken, nor necessary. Pay the departure tax, sign
the manifest for the next boat, pay $10 on board.
Most of the airlines have resumed service to St. Martin. American
is going to reinstate the New York flight for the high season.
(AA has already resumed 3 times a day flights to Anguilla
from San Juan on weekends.)
Horses and Cushions!!
We were down at Christobell Johnson's Home Decor
shop in Blowing Point to pick up some chair cushions
(she also makes bedspreads, drapes, slipcovers, and
wedding dresses, telephone: 809-497-6369).
She also has a new gift shop on the main road.
Her workshop is located down a side road
next to the El Rancho Del Blues stables (turn left at the gas station
that is open). The horses appear to have survived the
hurricane and are ready to take you for a ride on the beach.
. . . continue virtual vacation