McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas' Stephanie Harris took on the "big island" of St. Croix, US Virgin Islands, searching for island adventures. There, she discovered that even the pigs in the rainforest know how to party, but more on that later...
There’s much more to experience on St. Croix besides beaches and diving. I spent the first night of my weekend at the Divi Carina Bay Casino, the USVI’s only casino. There are table games including Black Jack, Caribbean Stud Poker, 3 Card Poker, Roulette, Craps and a 15/30 Limit Poker Table. There are also many slot machines ranging from the new penny slots to $5 slots and even a virtual Black Jack center. What I enjoyed most was the live music exploding from the stage above the bar area. Although I couldn’t understand the lyrics to most of Sabor Latinos’ songs, the music and drinks were flowing throughout the entire casino and both locals and tourists were dancing.
(TIP: Hacienda villa is only about a 2 minute drive down the hill to the Casino!)
Live music seems to be common on St. Croix. The following day was spent exploring beach bar hangouts in the north side. There are a string of local beach bars on or across from the Cane Bay Beach including The Full Moon Bar on Cane Bay Beach, Off the Wall and Sprat Net – all of which showcase local live music and gorgeous sunsets.
(TIP: Cane Bay Hideaway is within walking distance to these establishments, and both Clairmont Mill and Estate Belvedere are within a short drive away from this area.)
The highlight of the weekend had to be Norma’s Mt. Pellier Domino Club located in the rainforest north of Frederiksted. This jungle bar, complete with thatched roof, is the home of the drinking pigs (click the image at right for larger view). For a dollar, you can buy a can of (non-alcoholic) O’Doul's and feed it to one of the two pigs, Grunt or Hurricane Roger. They are trained to gently take the unopened can from your hand and puncture it, drink it and then spit out the empty can. Besides the entertaining pigs, The Domino Club offers tasty local food like pates (crispy meat, seafood or veggie-filled patties), johnny cakes (small, round fried dough cakes) and roti (an East Indian specialty consisting of curried chicken, beef, goat, or seafood surrounded by a delicate chickpea-based wrap).
An amazing local artist, Kurt Schindler, plays at The Domino Club every last Sunday of the month accompanied by two drum players. I’m not sure if it was the music or the Mamajuana, a unique rum concoction made with honey and special herbs, but everyone was on their feet dancing the night away!