- September 29th, 2011
- in Yachting
Readers’ Choice Awards
It has been a year since we first asked you to vote on the best in properties and yachts and everything that makes the Virgin Islands awesome. Some things have changed since then, and others have remained the same. This year’s poll extended to ten new categories, and heeded many similar choices as last year—but also new ones that just couldn’t be left out.
Best British Virgin Islands goes to the reigning champ, Virgin Gorda. The two-time victor boasts the elegance of its secluded villas that dot its boulder-strewn landscapes.
Best Neighbourhood to Live landed back on the popular and pristine beach community at Cane Garden Bay. Although Cane took this category for the second year in a row, it was a narrow defeat over the bustling marina neighbourhood at Nanny Cay.
Best Sunset goes to the overlook at Tortola’s Bananakeet restaurant, where the romantic views from the terrace produce an eye-full from Jost Van Dyke to St Thomas and beyond.
Best Museum, for the second year in a row, goes to the Old Government House, which has recently doubled as a venue for this company’s launch party for the Taste cookbook. But we didn’t let our bias come between your votes—honest.
Best Historic Ruin finds visitors with a preference for the Copper Mine on Virgin Gorda.
Best Villa Rental revisits Golden Pavilion on Tortola’s East Side. The bright yellow cliffside abode stands out as a gem of the island. Readers also voted numerous times for 100 Pond Bay, Baraka Point and Guavaberry on Virgin Gorda.
Best Resort finds its way from Trellis Bay to Scrub Island, the private-island home to the newest Marriot Signature Series resort. Last year, Scrub won best resort pool.
Best Architect/Firm goes to Roger Downing Partners in Road Town. Last year, the community lost legendary architect Roger Downing, whose firm is responsible for a number of landmarks in the BVI.
Best Real Estate Agency goes to Property BVI, the Road Town-based firm that employs some of the hardest working agents in the Territory. Our friend Chris Smith over at Coldwell Banker received the most personal votes for his efforts out of his Nanny Cay and Virgin Gorda offices.
Best Spa cozies up with the seclusion and serenity at Peter Island Resort & Spa, where pampering and paradise are synonymous.
Best Landscaping company finds its roots firmly planted at Minines Plants and Landscaping, where their array of services, selection and quality of work have allowed them to blossom in the BVI.
Best Pool makes its splash at the Tamarind Resort in Josiah’s Bay, a personal favourite among aLookingGlass employees who have spent penty-a-wet and wild Sunday’s imbibing in the inviting pool.
Best Proposed Government Project probably heeded the most hilarious responses, but topped out at the renovations to the Crafts Alive Village in Road Town. Also in the running was the cruiseship pier and airport extension, and one reader simply likes “roads.”
Best Eyesore found its way to the north shore of Tortola where the Bomba Shack stands as a reminder that hedonism is still alive and well for the debauchery-seeking revelers that come to our shores from miles away.
Best Marina once again docks in at Nanny Cay, which offers guest all-encompassing amenities and accommodations. Leverick Bay and Scrub Island are also due mention for the handful of votes they each accumulated.
Best Beach in the BVI is Smugglers Cove, according to readers who prefer the beach that has recently vacated its vendors from its shores. Perhaps the newfound privacy provoked some to vote for Smugs.
Best Place to Skinny Dip—my personal favourite, as well—goes to Rouge’s Bay (Lava Flow). What happens at this secluded and often empty Tortola beach stays there.
Best Sailor again goes to Alec Anderson, the All-American collegiate BVI sailor. In this close race, renowned local sailors Presley King, Colin Rathbun, Robin Tattersal and Sam Morrell all pulled in their fair share of votes.
Best Watersports Instructor sails into Alison Knights Bramble, who heads the BVI Watersports Centre in Manuel Reef on Tortola. The recent author of the children’s novel Eye of the Storm also leads the Special Olympics BVI sailing team.
Best Regatta once again goes to BVI Spring Regatta, the most attended regatta in the territory that brings crowds from all over the world to compete and watch the battles on the packed waterways.
Best Sailing School goes to the back-to-back winner Rob Swain, who runs his operation out of Nanny Cay.
Best Dive Shop repeated honours with Blue Water Divers a fin ahead of its competition.
Best Place to Snorkel in the BVI is perceived by most to be at the Caves by the Indians off Norman Island.
Best Daysail goes to Mystique of the Voyage Charters fleet, the catamaran that never fails to host a great time on the BVI’s azure waters.
Best Charter Company goes to Horizon, the Nanny Cay Marina-based company whose fleet includes the famed Bavaria series.
Best Provisioning returns to RiteWay, where readers overwhelming choose to shop for their boat- and villa-stocking necessities.
Best One-Day Regatta goes to Foxy’s Wooden Boat Regatta, where their motto is “A real regatta means old boats, like they used to make ‘em.”
Best Restaurant again goes to The Dove in Tortola, where elegance and fine dining comingle in the territory’s capital.
Best Place to Get Fresh Threads hangs in at UMI Fashions, where original style is delivered in a territory where selection isn’t always its best attribute.
Best Full Moon Party repeats itself at Trellis Bay, where Mocko Jumbies, fungi music and burning balls define this popular Beef island party. Bomba Shack again took a close second to Trellis.
Best Cocktail again goes to the Painkiller, the locally concocted fruit drink that combines a blend of sweet fruit juices and rum to delive r a relief to the common case of boredom.
Best Musician goes to the two-time winner and Cane Garden Bay resident Quito Rhymer, whose song Reggae Express recently went online as the songwriter’s first music video.
Best Artist again goes to Aragorn Dick-Reed, the Trellis Bay artist whose variety of clay and oil-based paintings have found favour among more readers than even other notables like Lutai Durante, Ruben Vanterpool and Joseph Hodge.
Best Photographer in the BVI is Amanda Baker, according to readers who had to make the tough decision over other professionals like Paul Hubbard, Jim Scheiner, Todd Vansickle and Dougal Thornton.
Best Late-Night Haunt goes to Le Grande Café, the Road Town bar and restaurant often referred to Le Cabanon by patron’s who have been partying late hours at the establishment before it changed names two years ago.
Best Bartender goes to Sean Anderson, The Dove mixologist who is responsible for the extensive drink menu and the high-end restaurant. He’s also been responsible for more than a few of our hangovers here at the office.
Best Shack Bar—last but not least—goes to the Bomba Shack. Despite its reputation as an eye sore, the infamously popular bar made from salvaged wood and decorated with colourful panties and busty bras.
All winners will receive, other than bragging rights, a certificate boasting the fact that they were YOUR choice as the BVI’s best. Additionally, the voter who won our drawing will receive a gift certificate to our “Best Restaurant” winner, The Dove.