Archives for September 2015

Sandy Cay, Bahamas and its Link to Gilligan

Sandy Cay, or Honeymoon Cay, a small 3 acre private island northeast of Paradise Island in the Bahamas is famous primarily for one thing. Sure it’s been used to film numerous fashion spreads and commercials. Sure it’s said to be one of the most photographed islands in the Bahamas, but what is Sandy Cay or Honeymoon Cay best known for?

Sandy Cay, Bahamas copyright Rum Therapy
Sandy Cay is known as the island shown in the title card during the beginning theme of Gilligan’s Island first season. That’s right, Gilligan’s Island.

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As avid fans of Gilligan’s Island back in the day (the re-runs of course!), we were excited to find out about the island during an excursion and enjoyed having our picture taken in front of it.

Sandy Cay, Bahamas copyright Rum Therapy
And of course, as soon as we returned home, we watched the first episode of Gilligan’s Island again to see the tiny island we got to visit (see video below at :56).

Now I’m sure the little island has changed a lot since Gilligan’s Island first aired in 1964 due to hurricanes and other storms, erosion and even man, and if this is the island used a the photograph for the opening, its looks have changed a bit.  Still, we choose to believe it was Sandy Cay. And regardless, we wouldn’t mind being stranded there for a while after a three-hour tour…as long as there’s rum!

Have you been to Sandy Cay? Tell us about it!

Find Sandy Cay on our Bahamas Map

To see more island posts, check out our Island Blog Directory

Thanks to Bahama Boat Excursions for an excellent day on the water!

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Beach Bar Bums – A Beach, A Bar and A Dream


About a decade ago, Tom Westerhof was sitting at Buho’s Beach Bar on Playa Norte on Isla Mujeres, a small island just off the coast of Cancun, when he said to himself, “I could sit here all day and be perfectly content”.

It actually took a second trip back to St. Kitts three years ago for him to finally do something about it. He kept researching destinations and basing his decisions on the number of beach bars and their proximity to the resort. He knew he couldn’t be the only person out there who loved beach bars and that’s when it all began in earnest. In 2012, the company Beach Bar Bums was born.

photoBeach Bar BumsSmokey’s at the Cove, Anguilla
photo: Beach Bar Bums

Do you love beach bars as much as we do? Then you really should be following Tom’s company, Beach Bar Bums. Not only does Tom give us the scoop on beach bars everywhere, he also now also focuses on ancillary businesses that support beach bars and the destinations that call them home. He’s written about resorts, restaurants, spirits (the liquid kind), cocktails, music, events, travel, people involved in the business and so forth. It’s kind of morphed into a travel/lifestyle blog for people who love the beach .. and a rum cocktail or two. Um, no wonder we’re fans!

photo Beach Bar Bums
Tom, his wife and daughter with Bankie Banx at Dune Preserve
photo: Beach Bar Bums


Have you ever thought about owning your own beach bar? Well, Beach Bar Bums is about to launch a new feature on their website called a “listings page” where individuals will be able to list basic info on businesses they have for sale at no cost to them. This is a development that Tom is very excited about. He’s partnering with a company out of Europe and in the role as “finders,” he will be trying to find sellers of beach bars the right buyers and vice versa. A lot of business owners don’t want to advertise that they’re for sale out of fear that it might impact their business – they’d rather put “feelers” out and see if there’s someone out there interested.   That’s where Beach Bar Bums come in – they offer bar owners a chance to “feel out” the market confidentially, only offering as much information as they choose to share. Tom’s already building up a database of potential buyers. Apparently, there are a lot of people out there looking to buy a beach bar!

Another new venture for Beach Bar Bums is a partnership that they recently entered into with Clear Vision Media to offer photography services not just of beach bars but of any travel, tourism and hospitality-related business, with a concentration on beach destinations. They offer the full portfolio of photography and video services including aerial (drone) photography and video along with HDR 360 degree virtual tours. The virtual tour they produced for Caddy’s on the Beach in Treasure Island, Florida is amazing – it’s almost like you’re there! They’re a full service media production company so being able to partner with them was something Tom couldn’t pass up.

We asked Tom if he had a favorite Caribbean beach bar and he replied, “That’s a hard question but I would probably have to say it’s the Sunshine Shack in Anguilla. For me, it’s the quintessential Caribbean beach bar. It’s basically a shack on the beach where the sand is the floor and there are no navigable roads leading to it. Rendezvous Bay, where it’s located, is gorgeous and Garvey, the owner, is one of the nicest people you will ever meet. Every visit to the Sunshine Shack will leave you with a smile, either from the rum, hanging out with Garvey or a combination of the two”.

We asked Tom if he had a Bucket List of beach bars and if so, if he would share a few on that list. He told us The Rock Bar at the Ayana Resort in Bali, Foxy’s on Jost Van Dyke and pretty much anywhere in Maldives are some of the locations at the top of his list.

photo Beach Bar BumsSunset at the Sunset Bar & Grill, St. Maarten
photo: Beach Bar Bums

Tom’s eventual goal and dream is to someday own his own beach bar. Not a shock. We asked if he had a location in mind and what some of the features of his beach bar would be. He said, “If I had to pick one destination under threat of never being able to drink vodka tonics again, I would have to pick St. Maarten. Some of the cool aspects of our bar would be the drink and food menu. The bar would feature original craft cocktails and tapas style small plates to pair with them, offering customers a unique dining experience in a laid back beach atmosphere. I would want people to feel like they were walking into their neighborhood bar and there would be a free round of shots for everyone with an open tab at sunset. Granted, it might be the cheap stuff but it’ll be free”.

Are you already following Beach Bar Bums? If not, you should! Find them here:

Beach Bar Bums Website

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Caribbean Roti

 Foxy’s has it and it’s tasty. We’ve enjoyed it a Leverick Bay and even at Willy T’s. But we first sampled a delicious dish with East Indian origins called roti while sailing the BVI years ago. Our chef was quite adept at preparing local dishes and treated us to some terrific dinners that week but the thought of that warm and succulent roti stuffed with tender chicken, potatoes and curry and drizzled with mango chutney sauce stuck with us even after we returned home – in a good way!

“Roti” can actually refer to two things – a flatbread served along another dishes, or our favorite, the burrito style roti stuffed with any number of things such as chicken, fish, shrimp or vegetables. The dish is thought to have originated in Trinidad by laborers from India in the mid-19th century, but eventually spread to many other islands in the Caribbean. Today Roti is a common dish in the BVI.

Although we’re returning soon to the BVI and will certainly be looking for more delicious roti, we ran across this recipe are going to give it a try this weekend. Roti are best served in a freshly baked roti shell, but in a pinch you can use a tortilla shell. It’s a little thicker than the original shell, but if you brown it just a little for crispness, it tastes works quite well.

copyright Rum Therapy
Caribbean Roti
(makes 4)

3 boneless chicken breasts
1 tsp. coriander
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 c. chicken stock
1 large onion, chopped in  chunks

3 minced garlic cloves
2 1/2 tbsp. curry powder
2 large white potatoes, diced
1/2 yellow scotch bonnet or chili pepper
mango chutney

Sauté the onions  and chicken until lightly browned. Add garlic and curry powder and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add potatoes and coat with the mixture. Pour in the chicken stock and add the peppers and coriander. Simmer until the potatoes are very tender and broth begins to reduce. Salt to taste, then serve wrapped in a warm roti drizzled with mango chutney.


Have you enjoyed roti while traveling in the Caribbean? Tell us about it!

To see more island posts, check out our Island Blog Directory

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Exuma Blue Lemonade

Have you ever tried an Electric Lemonade? An Exuma Blue Lemonade is similar to an Electric Lemonade except we substituted rum for the vodka and added a bit more sweet and sour mix for a slightly tarter taste. The color was so clear and blue that it reminded us of the beautiful water around Exuma, so we re-named the new rum version Exuma Blue.

Easy and really refreshing, this would be a good recipe to make in a larger batch!

copyright Rum Therapy
Exuma Blue Lemonade
(makes one)

1.5 oz silver rum
1 oz blue Curaçao
2 oz sweet and sour mix
lemon lime soda
lime slice and cherry for garnish

In a shaker, add the rum, blue Curaçao, and sweet and sour mix. Shake gently, then pour in a short glass with ice. Fill to the top with the lemon lime soda. Garnish with a lime slice and a cherry.


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or Rum Recipes by Category


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Tony and Gail King of Boat BVI


Tony King fell in love with sailing at the age of 7. It was his first sail and he was hooked. He later went on to a naval school in the UK and eventually earned his USCG 100 ton Masters license.

Today, Tony, along with his wife Gail, have put their love and knowledge of sailing, sailing vessels and yachts to good use by helping match individuals wanting to book a sailing vacation together with a boat and crew that best fits their needs. The Kings started their company, Boat BVI as a way to stay in the sailing industry and to help others experience the joy of a sailing vacation.

Gail-and-Tony-at-Village-Cay-OTony and Gail King

Tony and Gail know the Caribbean and Bahamas well. They have sailed all over the region and have lived in St. Thomas, Tortola, Puerto Rico, and the Florida Keys, both aboard their Hatteras yacht and on land. When I asked Tony what his favorite sailing destination was, he said, ” The BVI has to remain my favorite place of all. I’ve been there countless times but it still remains fresh and enjoyable every time. I’m a fair weather sailor (unless I’m racing) and love the protected waters and gentle trade winds that practically guarantee you a great vacation!”

In 1998, the King’s founded the company American Yacht, the parent company of Boat BVI. That same year, they decided to try their hand at chartering and being the crew of their own boat. Knowing nothing yet about the crewed charter industry and not having a clue what to expect, they took their boat down to the USVI from Florida,  joined a clearing house and bingo, they were suddenly in the business. Quite scary. Thankfully everyone in the industry was incredibly helpful and they’ll eternally be grateful to their early colleagues in St. Thomas and Tortola who acted as mentors.

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After about 4 years of learning the business from the ground up by working in the role of captain, mate, chef, and engineer, they decided to sell the boat and head to Miami where they set up shop,  first as a clearing house (Flagship Florida) and later as charter brokers with two websites: boatmiami.com and boatbvi.com.

The King’s company, Boat BVI, specializes in crewed charters in the BVI, but can also assist in finding a charter in other Caribbean destinations. Tony and Gail decide which boats and crews to represent by attending charter shows in St. Thomas, Tortola and Antigua to check out all the charter vessels and talk with the crews. An online industry database is used that has the pictures, specs and availability nicely laid out so they can present beautiful color brochures to their clients. As a norm they only present yachts that they know personally. If they need to go outside of their network during very busy seasons like Christmas or Spring Break, they make sure to get recommendations from their industry colleagues.

Single-Hull-(600)-Ophoto: boatbvi.com
Tony and Gail mentioned that there are many things to consider when choosing a crewed charter,  from destination, boat type, and type of crew; fully crewed, captain only or bareboat, and the King’s expertise can help individuals navigate the charter waters to find just the right fit. Boats available in their database include sailing catamarans (the most popular), single hull sailing vessels and motor-yachts. There are some motor catamarans available as well.

Motor-Yacht-BVI-Ophoto:boatbvi.com
As we know from our experience with crewed charters, it’s important to get matched with a boat and crew that have complimentary interests and personalities. Tony and Gail excel at getting to know their clients and finding a good match from their extensive database. As part of the booking process, they interview their clients by phone or via email. It’s important to find out what their interests are and what type of vacation their looking for. Once they have a sense of clients personalities and expectations, they are able to match them with a boat and crew that compliments their needs.

And lastly, said Tony and Gail, when deciding upon a sailing vacation, it’s important to find a reputable charter company that you can trust with your vacation. Boat BVI has been in business for nearly 15 years and will take care of all of the technical aspects of setting up your charter so that you can sit back, relax and enjoy.

Have you always dreamed about taking a sailing vacation in the BVI or other areas of the Caribbean? Tony, Gail and Boat BVI can answer your questions and help you find just the right boat and crew for the vacation of your dreams!


Contact them to find out more!

Phone: (305)758-2500
Email: [email protected]
Website: BoatBVI
Boat BVI Facebook

This is a sponsored post. Although we were compensated by the company who sponsored it, the views are solely our own and we only recommend products or services we believe our readers will enjoy.

Sunday Serenity: First Tracks on White Bay

Lately when we talk about White Bay or Jost Van Dyke, everybody seems to have been there or has it on their “list”. With it’s stunning beauty and a plethora of great beach bars, Jost Van Dyke has been discovered.

But along with its fame comes crowds. Ever been on White Bay on a sunny afternoon in high season? Yep, it can be busy.

We had the pleasure of staying on-island in the White Bay Villas & Seaside Cottages for a week a couple of years ago. One of our favorite memories about being on White Bay early in the day or late in the evening when the day crowds go home? It’s so quiet…

During our week on JVD we got up early every morning and walked White Bay. Being from Colorado originally, we equated being the first to walk the beach in the morning as being the first one down a ski slope in the morning after a fresh dusting of snow. First tracks. Except warmer. Best thing about that? All we could hear was waves gently lapping the shore and seagulls calling…peaceful.

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Of course we usually headed back down to the beach later in the day for the party and a Painkiller or two…

Find more Sunday Serenity posts here:
Tropical Tips & More

To see more island posts, check out our Island Blog Directory

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Snappas Grill & Chill, Marsh Harbour, Abaco

From the outside it looks fairly unassuming, but on the inside it can be hopping. Snappas, a bar/restaurant that sits on the waters edge in Marsh Harbour was a fun place to hang out during our visit earlier this year to The Abacos, Bahamas.

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Close to the dock where we left on our Abacos sail in March Harbour, we ventured over to Snappas on several occasions to enjoy a cold beverage, a warm meal and conversation with other boaters.

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Conch Chowder with Cheese Crisps

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Conch Fritters

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Goombay Smash (recipe here!)

With live music on Friday & Saturday nights, cold drinks, warm food and friendly people, Snappas is a great place to chill while in Marsh Harbour. And don’t forget to look out back at sunset to see if you can catch a glimpse of one of their amazing sunset views…

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Have you been to Snappas? Tell us about it!

 Find Snappas Grill & Chill on our Bahamas Map

To see more island posts, check out our Island Blog Directory

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Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Water Slide through a Shark Tank at Atlantis

Our last adventure in Nassau included a two day stay on Paradise Island and since the hotel we were staying at (Comfort Suites Paradise Island) was located next to Atlantis Resort and included a day pass to the Atlantis amenities, we decided to make use of it and explore the humongous property.

Although much larger and busier than properties we usually opt to hang around, we’re up to checking out just about anything new and enjoyed exploring  all of the amenities this resort has to offer.

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While walking through the grounds, we noticed a large shark tank and made our way over to check it out.

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There were numerous sharks of different species swimming around, many coming close to the glass, causing shouts of glee from the wee ones gathered around.

We saw a large tube in the middle with people on inflatable tubes floating through.

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Cool, we thought and decided to give it a try.

There are two different slides that shoot through the shark tank. One is called the Leap of Faith and consists of a pretty substantial vertical drop into a tube. We opted for the more leisurely “Serpent Slide” in which you board a single or double inner tube and after a short drop in the dark, the tube opens up to a view of the sharks surrounding you – several of them just lounging around on the top to the tube!

copyright Rum Therapy
copyright Rum Therapy
copyright Rum Therapy
As cool as Swimming with the Sharks on Compass Cay? Nothing ever beats observing sea life in a more natural habitat, but the shark slide at Atlantis was pretty interesting to say the least.

Have you gone on the Leap of Faith or the Serpent Slide through the shark tank at Atlantis? Tell us about it!

Find the Gillam Bay, Green Turtle Cay on our Bahamas Map

To see more island posts, check out our Island Blog Directory

copyright©Rum Therapy
Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Tips On Booking an Affordable Caribbean Vacation

Traveling isn’t cheap and traveling to a beautiful island for a week in the sun and sand can be downright budget breaking. Comments we see frequently on our Facebook page in response to gorgeous island location pictures include “maybe in our next life” or “if only I could afford it”.

We get it. We’ve been fortunate to have traveled to many tropical destinations over the years, but for many years we had to get very creative in putting together a package that we could afford. Here are a few of the tricks and tips we’ve learned that may just help you plan for an economical and well deserved beach vacation.

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1. Be flexible. If you’re determined to visit the one destination that you’ve always wanted to see at the time of year you want to see it, you may end up paying more. Make a list of several islands that you’d enjoy and explore the airfare and accommodations at each one.

2. Consider traveling during low season or the shoulder season. The Caribbean low season is generally considered to be June to mid-December. Unfortunately much of that time is also hurricane season. We generally avoid travel to the Caribbean during the peak hurricane months of mid-August to mid-October, but have enjoyed many wonderful vacations with great weather and cheaper prices in May, June, July, November and December. If you’re worried about the potential for bad weather, check into travel insurance to see if it can protect you from weather related delays and problems.

3. Look into different packages that combine airfare with accommodations and sometimes even transfers or car rental. We’ve booked packages through American Airlines Vacations and Apple Vacations and have also booked packages through some resorts and cruises that can quote airfare along with their accommodations. Costco and Sam’s Club also offer travel deals! The selection of resorts and destinations vary and can be limited in these type of packages, but it’s definitely worth researching.

4. Frequent Flyer miles. We used to get a lot of “mileage” out of these and although they are still available and widely used, we’ve found that they’ve become much trickier to use. That being said, there are still deals to be had for travel savvy individuals. Some companies offer lots of “free miles” for opening up a new credit card (we recently got 35,000 miles for opening up a new US Airways card – also good on American Airlines), and if you can be flexible in your travel dates or can plan way ahead, you may be able to score free or discounted flights.

5. Consider renting a villa, house, apartment or condo. This option can be extremely attractive if you are traveling with children or with a large group. We rented a villa on the beach with a pool in North Caicos with a total of 6 adults. We were able to cook many of our meals in the villa (which had a beautiful well appointed kitchen with granite countertops and plenty of dining space) and enjoyed lounging in the pool and walking the beach just steps from our villa. We split the cost of the villa per person and it was one of the most affordable accommodations we’ve come across. There are several good companies to check with, including VRBO and HomeAway and know that at least one offers insurance in case there are any problems with the rental. Be sure to check the cleaning rates and the deposit amount on your desired rental.

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7. Consult a Travel Agent. Travel agents can know of special deals on airfare and resorts that we may not find on the internet, so it’s worth checking in with one to find out.

8. Call a resort directly. Resorts occasionally have specials, discounts or packages that aren’t widely publicized. If you have a particular resort in mind, call them directly to see if they have an upcoming deal – or if perhaps you could receive a free room upgrade!

9. Consider traveling on atypical days. If you have a little flexibility in your schedule, check the pricing on airfare and accommodations mid-week to mid-week instead of Saturday to Saturday.

10. Shorten your stay by one day. If you find a place you REALLY want to stay and it’s just a little over budget, check the pricing for 6 days instead of 7. This may put you right in the budget you’re looking for.

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11. Search RedWeek for timeshare rentals in your desired destination. Timeshare rentals are timeshares that owners rent to other individuals when they can’t use them themselves. RedWeek.com is the largest online marketplace for timeshares. Owners post their timeshare units on the RedWeek site, and connect directly with travelers looking to rent – usually for a pretty good price!

Hopefully these tips will help you find a good deal on a Caribbean trip of your dreams to get your toes in the sand sooner rather than later.

Do you know of other deal-finding tips to share? If so, tell us about them!

Find more Tropical Tips here:
Tropical Tips & More

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Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC

Tropical Depression Drink

We recently saw a Tropical Drink Recipe said to be served at the beautiful Scrub Island Resort in the BVI and thought we’d give it a try. We made our own mango and strawberry purées by thawing frozen mango and frozen strawberries (be sure to keep the juice as it thaws) and then throwing it in the blender until liquefied. We opted not to add any sugar to the mix, thinking the fruit would be sweet enough and were happy with the results.

Be sure not to add too much ice as you are blending everything together. We started with about 1/4 c. and added a piece or two more. If the mixture is too thick, add a splash or two of lemon lime soda or Ginger Ale and stir.

The recipe called for a garnish of toasted coconut, which we didn’t have on hand, but I’m sure it would compliment the taste quite well. Other options would be a sprinkle of freshly ground nutmeg or a dark rum floater.

Tropical Depression - copyright Rum Therapy
Tropical Depression
(makes one)

2 oz. mango purée
2 oz. strawberry purée
1 oz dark rum
(we used Gosling’s Black Seal Rum)
1 oz triple sec
1 oz amaretto
1 oz coconut crème
toasted coconut, pineapple and maraschino cherries for garnish

Blend all ingredients with ice until smooth. Pour into a short glass and garnish with toasted coconut, pineapple and maraschino cherries.

 

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Pictures and other content may not be re-used without written consent from Rum Therapy, LLC