Staying at a Resort May Not be the Best Option When Visiting Saint Martin (VIDEO)

Have you ever visited a tropical destination and noticed a stunning home — maybe on a cliff, or right on the beach — and thought about how amazing it would be to live there? Yeah, me too. With the growth in popularity of renting third party homes as vacation destinations, its never been more easy — and affordable — to rent a beautiful luxury home.

My family and I have been renting vacation homes for years. We have two young boys, now ages 5 and 6, and being in a home with our own space almost always makes more sense for us. The benefits are huge and we are almost always able to find a place that costs us less than what a hotel would cost.

Finding a place may take a little more time, but it’s always fun browsing homes in search of vacation gold.

View from our front porch sitting area

Last May, my family and I visited Sint Maarten and stayed five nights in a one bedroom with a pullout bed that was located directly on the beach in Simpson Bay. It was a five minute drive from the airport, close to every possible amenity we’d ever need, included parking, a kitchen, lots of beach gear, towels, chairs, and a wonderful front porch.

One of the best parts of staying in a private home is that you often will find yourself living more like a local than a tourist. In fact, we usually try to find places that are nestled in neighborhoods or buildings where you’re more likely to have neighbors who live where you’re visiting rather than tourists. It also means you have to be courteous to those neighbors as well. So there is a balance depending on how much noise you want to — or normally do — make. We’re pretty quite, so that’s never an issue for us.

Here’s a video that talks more about renting a home versus staying in a hotel. If you’ve never rented a home, I’d highly recommend trying it at least once. You may never turn back.

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Jon Ferlise

I fell in love with the island of Saint Martin the first time I visited to celebrate my 40th birthday in May of 2009. Since then, I've spent most birthdays there, and have visited countless other times getting to know this wonderful place and the friendly locals that make it so special. I adore the culture, the people, the community, and the beauty of this stunning island. SXM Strong is a website that I started to support humanitarian relief efforts following Hurricane Irma. There was no plan, it just evolved as I witnessed the devastation that Irma caused the island and the huge need to communicate and disseminate information about what had happened and how people could help support this island and its people.

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