St. Martin and St. Maarten Restaurants

Although most people come to St. Maarten/St. Martin for sun and fun, they leave praising the cuisine. On an island that covers only 37 square miles (96 square km), there are more than 400 restaurants from which to choose. You can sample the best dishes from France, Thailand, Italy, Vietnam, India, Japan, and, of course, the Cari
Although most people come to St. Maarten/St. Martin for sun and fun, they leave praising the cuisine. On an island that covers only 37 square miles (96 square km), there are more than 400 restaurants from which to choose. You can sample the best dishes from France, Thai
Although most people come to St. Maarten/St. Martin for sun and fun, they leave praising the cuisine. On an island that

Although most people come to St. Maarten/St. Martin for sun and fun, they leave praising the cuisine. On an island that covers only 37 square miles (96 square km), there are more than 400 restaurants from which to choose. You can sample the best dishes from France, Thailand, Italy, Vietnam, India, Japan, and, of course, the Caribbean.

Many of the best restaurants are in Grand Case (on the French side), but you should not limit your culinary adventures to that village. Great dining thrives throughout the island, from the bistros of Marigot to the hopping restaurants of Cupecoy to the low-key eateries of Simpson Bay. Whether you enjoy dining on fine china in one of the upscale restaurants or off a paper plate at the island's many lolos (roadside barbecue stands), St. Maarten/St. Martin's culinary options are sure to appeal to every palate. Loyalists on both "sides" will cheerfully try to steer you to their own favorites, and it’s common to cite high euro prices to deter exploration, but quite a few restaurants still offer a one-to-one exchange rate between dollars and euros if you use cash, and main-course portions are often large enough to be shared.

During high season, it's essential to make reservations, and making them a month in advance is advisable for some of the best places. Dutch-side restaurants sometimes include a 15% service charge, so check your bill before tipping. On the French side, service is always included, but it is customary to leave 5% to 10% extra in cash for the server. Don’t count on leaving tips on your credit card—it's customary to tip in cash. A taxi is probably the easiest solution to the parking problems in Grand Case, Marigot, and Philipsburg. Grand Case has two lots—each costs $4—at each end of the main boulevard, but they're often packed by 8 pm.

What to Wear: Although appropriate dining attire ranges from swimsuits to sport jackets, casual dress is usually appropriate throughout restaurants on the island. For men, a jacket and khakis or jeans will take you anywhere; for women, dressy pants, a skirt, or even fancy shorts are usually acceptable. Jeans are fine in the less formal eateries.

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  • 1. Cynthia's Talk of the Town

    $$ | Caribbean

    Although St. Martin is known for upscale dining, each town has its barbecue stands, called lolos —even Grand Case. Locals flock to the half...Read More

  • 2. Hidden Forest Café

    $$ | Caribbean

    Schedule your trip to Loterie Farm to take in lunch or dinner in lovely tree-house pavilions with a safari vibe the hip clientele can appreciate...Read More

  • 3. Karakter Beach Lounge

    $$ | Eclectic

    This funky and charming modern beach bar, right behind the airport, serves up fun, great music, relaxation, and a lot of style. The vibe is...Read More

  • 4. Le Sand

    $$$$ | French

    A stylish, upscale St. Barth vibe and beachfront location make this a great choice. Relax on the terrace for cocktails and snacks, or park yourself...Read More

  • 5. Top Carrot

    $ | Vegetarian

    Open from 7:30 am to 6 pm, this friendly café and juice bar is a popular healthy breakfast and lunch stop. It features fresh and tasty vegetarian...Read More

  • 6. Au Petit Café

    $ | Café

    There are only a small number of tables (both indoor and out) at this tiny bistro in the quaint shopping arcade just off Front Street. Stop...Read More

  • 7. Dreams

    $$$ | Eclectic

    Visit this lively beach club for the day, relaxing and dining on sushi, tapas, great salads, pizza, and French specialties. Visit after dark...Read More

  • 8. Enoch's Place

    $$ | Caribbean

    Enoch's lolo-style creole cooking is a Marigot must. Specialties include garlic shrimp, fresh lobster, and rice and beans like your St. Martin...Read More

  • 9. La Source

    $$ | Contemporary

    Somewhat hidden behind the boutiques in Marina Port La Royale (look near Vilebrequin), this tiny "healthy" restaurant features a French seasonal...Read More

  • 10. Pineapple Pete

    $$ | Seafood

    This popular, casual, and fun (if touristy) place is well located and has a game room with seven pool tables, four dart boards, an arcade, and...Read More

  • 11. Rainbow

    $$ | International

    Rainbow's beachfront deck with a front-row seat (or lounge chair) on Grand Case beach is a good bet for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. The eclectic...Read More

  • 12. Tropicana

    $$$ | French

    This bustling bistro at the Marina Port La Royale is busy all day long, thanks to a varied menu, (relatively) reasonable prices, and friendly...Read More

  • 13. Waikiki Beach

    $$$$ | Eclectic

    Sit at a picnic table or on a lounge bed, and enjoy the essence of Orient Beach with great food and people-watching. It's an all-day beach party...Read More

  • 14. Zee Best

    $ | Café

    This friendly bistro serves one of the best breakfasts on the island. There's a huge selection of fresh-baked pastries—try the almond croissants...Read More

  • 15. La Belle Epoque

    $$ | Eclectic

    This brasserie at the Marigot marina is a favorite among locals. Whether for a drink or a meal, it's a great spot for boat- and people-watching...Read More

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