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February 21, 2018

St.Maarten Heineken Regatta

“Fun, Memorable, Exciting”

“The St. Maarten Heineken Regatta will celebrate its 38th anniversary and takes place from March 1st – 4th, 2018. This Regatta is the largest warm water Regatta in the world and offers a great combination of challenging races and fantastic parties, keeping with the event’s motto “Serious Fun”!

Every year, the largest regatta in the Caribbean is held off the coast of St.Maarten. More than 200 teams participate annually in the event, which takes place over three days. Although the best way to follow the race is aboard a boat at sea, it’s still possible to cheer on the sailboats that pass closer to shore at the Falaise des Oiseaux villa in the Lowlands or the rocky point off Happy Bay. The regatta’s slogan, “Serious Fun,” is truly embraced, as after the race sailors head back to shore for a string of concerts that bring together all kinds of international headliners.


Starting with the one-day Gill Commodore’s Cup and continuing with the three days of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, sailors are offered a mixture of races with a combination of windward-leeward and coastal races blended together into an irresistible cocktail of racing chosen to suit each class. As the all-out racing monohulls savor the prospect of eight races over four days with windward-leeward races on two days and two longer coastal races testing both boat handling and tactics, it’s easy to understand why the regatta attracts a large competitive classes of 40ft and 50ft cruiser-racers. Non-spinnaker cruising boats get more varied courses with less emphasis on tight maneuvers but lots of strategic opportunities to keep the racing tight. Maxis and Multihulls have their own race areas to stretch their legs with races suited to their sailing styles: an emphasis on coastal races with fewer windward legs for cruising-style multihulls and longer more challenging races for Performance Multihulls and Maxis. Live-aboard cruisers and others just wanting to be a part of the regatta get one medium-length race per day with a leisurely start time and the emphasis definitely more “Fun” than “Serious”.

Serious Fun Parties

The St. Maarten Heineken Regatta is ready to start! Despite the challenges that Hurricane Irma brought to Sint Maarten a few months ago, in just a few short weeks, the 38th St. Maarten Heineken Regatta will be in full swing. The Regatta, known as the largest warm water regatta in the world, is set to take place March 1-4, 2018 and will still host a few thousand visitors to the island’s Caribbean shores. The international and local entertainment acts have been booked and the iconic Heineken event stage will soon be erected. Despite any concerns post-hurricane Irma for fewer registrations, sailors from all around the world have been rushing to enter to race in the Caribbean’s largest sailing event.

With Heineken as a long-standing sponsor, you would expect the parties to be exceptional… you won’t be disappointed! With parties at varied locations around the island there are fantastic opportunities to experience the legendary nightlife for which the island is famous. St. Maarten Heineken Regatta has a well-earned reputation for hosting amazing artists like the Black Eyed Peas, UB40 featuring Ali, Astro & Mickey, Akon, Wyclef Jean, Shaggy, The Commodores, and Red Foo and the Party Rock Crew for the parties so that tired but happy sailors can party with an ice-cold Heineken in their hand and the sand between their toes as they watch the sun dip below the horizon.


This year, there have been some exciting changes to the on-shore party venues. All music events will be hosted from one central location at Princess Port de Plaisance Resort. The large open-air fields at Port de Plaisance allow for the ultimate creative space to bring these high-energy events to life, in a unique festival style.

Thursday, March 1st, the day of the Gill Commodore’s Cup, officially starts off the regatta festivities with a night of music at Port de Plaisance. Thursday’s theme, Green Sensation, is back once again and will showcase a collaboration of the island’s top four DJs: Cutcreator DJ Outkast, DJ Bossman, DJ Big Boss and DJ Em. This is an interactive DJ set, which allows the audience to “vote” for the next music track.

Friday, March 2nd, will be a night of exceptional local talent. This event is in partnership with Port St. Maarten to bring the evening of “Re-Discover Sint Maarten” to life. The sounds of the island’s best local and international musicians including Remo & the Barbwire Band, Percy Rankin, What the Funk, Orange Grove, Ziggi Recado, and Patrick Grayham will be featured along with local artisans, groups, and organizations who can showcase and sell their work at the Regatta Marketplace. If you are interested in a booth at the Regatta Marketplace, please contact

Saturday, March 3rd, takes the event to “Caribbean Jam”, which will be every Soca music lover’s absolute highlight. What better way to start off the Jam session, than with a SocaRumble segment, featuring Sint Maarten’s top Soca artists? You will be sure to jam the night away, with a performance by Antigua’s Onyan and 3 Cylinder, followed by the headliner of the night, the Soca-sensation from Trinidad and queen of Soca, Destra.

Sunday, March 4th, the final evening is named “Legendary Party”. The event’s organizers have already announced that Shaggy will be returning to the stage, in what is sure to be an unforgettable performance. Also making a special appearance Sunday night will be JonnyGuy, Natty & The House from Anguilla and St. Maarten’s Youth Waves!

Thursday and Friday evenings will continue to be free to the public. The Saturday night, March 3rd, will have a $15 admission fee, and the Sunday night, March 4th will have a $25 admission fee for the general public. Corporate and VIP passes for the night’s concerts are available and include admission to the event, VIP area access, drinks, air-conditioned private restrooms and VIP parking. VIP tickets for Saturday are $75, and Sunday goes for $100 a ticket. The St. Maarten Heineken Regatta is also offering special packages for sailors, the so-called Sailor Entertainment Packages. For only $75, competitors in the Regatta receive access to the Sailors lounge at all Concert nights with a fantastic view on stage, including private restrooms and admission for both the Saturday and Sunday night Concert.

A portion of all proceeds will go towards various local charities, such as K1 Britannia, St. Maarten Sea Rescue Foundation, St. Maarten Nature Foundation, and the St. Maarten Yacht Club Regatta Foundation, in assistance of their various hurricane relief projects. Aside from ticket sales, as a fundraising effort to rebuild Sint Maarten, there will be various fundraising activities in the Heineken Regatta Village. A portion of the food & beverage sales, art exhibition sales and much more will also go towards the hurricane relief fund, to be donated to the charities. The Regatta Venue will offer plenty of food and drinks for sale, as well as St. Maarten Heineken Regatta merchandise.

Tickets for the Saturday and Sunday music events can be purchased at all UTS offices, both Van Dorp locations, the Sint Maarten Yacht Club, Island92 and Kooyman. Concert goers can decide to pay for their event tickets with Fun Miles. Tickets can also be ordered online at the Regatta website General admission tickets for the Saturday event are $15 and $25 for the Sunday event. VIP tickets are $75 for the Saturday event and $100 for Sunday. Competitors in the Regatta can buy their Sailor Entertainment Package for $75.

The sole purpose of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta is to create an international sailing and music event that highlights the island of Sint Maarten and attracts visitors to the many hotels, restaurants and cultural highlights that this dual nation has to offer.

38 years strong and it just keeps getting better. Four days of world-class racing with some of the world’s most seasoned sailors, from more than 35 countries, sailing Maxis, Monohulls and Performance Multihulls to holiday-makers on chartered Bareboats and live-aboard families cruising the Caribbean. Crystal clear waters and cooling northeast trade winds give the pristine conditions for spectacular racing just off the coast of St. Maarten. And with Heineken as title sponsor, the racing days blend seamlessly into four nights of exceptional parties. This event is your bucket list must-do! Come and enjoy life in the Caribbean, come for some Serious Fun from March 1-4, 2018! “


“Schaede, Jonathan. “St.Maarten Heineken Regatta .” Heineken Regatta , Carib Web Designer, 18 Feb. 2018,”

About the author, Dieter Schaede

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