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Thursday, April 25, 2013

Bonaire Says Farewell to Casablanca Argentinean Grill

After ten years of great dining, the island will have to say farewell to Casablanca Argentinean Grill.  The restaurant will close at its current location on April 28th, 2013.

Due to the recent sale of the building where the restaurant currently resides, Casablanca will close its doors next week.  It’s possible that the popular eatery will re-open at a later date if a new location is found.  During its ten years of service to the visitors and residents of Bonaire, Casablanca created a large base of fans of its Argentinean-based grill and abundant seafood platters.  Their mixed grill for two persons, which could feed an army or two, became legendary among the visitors of Bonaire, and the restaurant will be sorely missed.

Best wishes and thanks for many memorable meals are sent to the wait staff, kitchen staff, and owners of Casablanca.  (Source:  Bonaire Insider Reporter)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 25, 2013 at 5:22pm AST
Restaurants and DiningPermalink
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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Celebrate Mother’s Day on Bonaire, Events, Specials, and Packages Help to Plan Their Perfect Day

Mother’s Day holds a special place in everyone’s hearts and especially on Bonaire. Select island establishments are offering big plans, so that all visiting moms enjoy their special day.  Restaurants, activity providers, and a wide variety of accommodation providers have announced myriad ways to celebrate Mother’s Day and in some instances, the entire month of May.

Appetite Bonaire: On May 12th, 2013 a special Mother’s Day menu including a four-course chef’s menu with dessert and a free glass of prosecco will be available for $45.00 per person.  Let their chef take care of all the decision making on that special day, with a complete menu from fish, to meat, to shellfish, to cheese.

Bellafonte Chateau de la Mer: Between May 11th and 19th 2013, Bellafonte is offering a 15% discount off their normal room rates.  Additionally, all mothers will receive a bouquet on their special day, along with reservation assistance for a free 30-minute massage.  Reservations must be made directly through Bellafonte with a seven-night stay required. (One offer per room is permitted.)

Belmar Oceanfront Apartments: When staying at Belmar Oceanfront Apartments, all mothers will receive chocolates.

Bonaire Oceanfront Apartments: Bonaire Oceanfront Apartments offers mothers free diving with unlimited air, a discount of $159.00 for six days of diving.  This special is valid from May 6th through May 19th, 2013, for those families visiting with their mother, and it includes all taxes.  A seven-night stay at Bonaire Oceanfront Apartments is required to qualify for this special.  When booking, refer to Mother’s Day Special.

Buddy Dive Resort: When staying at Buddy Dive, all mothers will receive roses.

Captain Donís Habitat: From May 4th through 31st, 2013, Captain Don’s Habitat is offering the seventh night free. The seven-night dive package is priced from just $745 per person/double occupancy, and it includes ocean view room accommodations, welcome rum punch, managerís rum punch party, 6 single-tank boat dives, 6 days of 24-hour unlimited shore diving, and government taxes, services charges, and energy surcharge (except on free night). Enjoy oceanfront dining, bar and pool, day spa, full-service dive operations, photo shop, and Free Wi-Fi. Airfare, vehicle rental and travel insurance also available through Captain Donís North America representative.

Caribbean Club Bonaire: Mothers will receive a complimentary glass of prosecco at Happy Hour.

Caribbean Wind & Sun Vacations: When guests book a windsurfing or diving package (accommodations, vehicle and dive or windsurf gear rental) for two with Caribbean Wind & Sun Vacations, they will earn one free massage at Namaste Spa for Mom. This offer applies to new bookings and is available for the entire month of May.

Divi Flamingo Beach Resort:  Divi Flamingo Beachís current Shore & Explore package is tailor-made for Momís special day.  All mothers get their own set of wheels to go wherever they like, including taking advantage of Bonaireís renowned shore diving sites.  This package provides special pricing on a seven-night stay, unlimited shore diving and a 4-passenger pick-up rental, along with free breakfast daily. The “must-do” activity is the Motherís Day brunch at the Calabas Restaurant on May 12th, 2013. It includes an omelet and Indonesian station, and will be served from 11:00 AM through 2:00 PM.  There will be music in the garden, prizes, and surprises.  Rates for the Shore & Explore package begin at $872.00 per person, based on double occupancy. Taxes, service charges, and the Bonaire National Marine Park fee are not included. 

Elements of Bonaire: From May 10th through 11th, 2013, visiting moms can receive a free pair of earrings or a ring to match, valued at $15.00, with any purchase of an Omega Pendant.  These very special pieces of Dichroic Glass jewelry are carefully hand-crafted on Bonaire. Multiple layers of metal oxides are vaporized and electro-beamed onto glass in a vacuum chamber. In any kind of light the colors sparkle and change depending on the angle of view. Each piece is a work of art as no two pieces can ever be the same. 

H2O Visions Bonaire:  From May 12th through 18th, 2013, mothers go free for either a snorkel or island tour, with a minimum of three paying.

Horse Ranch Bonaire:  Previously the Riding Academy Bonaire, the Horse Ranch Bonaire is organizing a mother/daughter trail ride for the special price of $200.00 for two persons.  Groups are kept to a minimum, so advance reservations are recommended.  Reference the booking code Mother/Daughter Trail when making a reservation, valid for services between May 6th and May 19th , 2013.

Villa Ganshi: Visitors can enjoy a discount of 15% from the normal rates for any Saturday-to-Saturday booking from May 4th through May 18th, 2013.  Those who can enjoy Bonaire’s great diving and windsurfing for a fourteen night stay during this time can enjoy a 20% discount on the normal weekly rate. 

Woodwind Snorkel & Sailing Trips: Mothers definitely will feel pampered on Woodwind’s guided snorkel trip on Sunday, May 12th, 2013 from 9:00 AM through 2:00 PM.  Everything is always included on Woodwind’s trips, so only a towel is needed.  The excursion includes snorkel equipment, a warm lunch, dessert, and open bar.  A mother and son/daughter duo enjoy half-price rates, $25.00 per person, or mothers are free when accompanied by others paying the normal rate of $50.00 per person.

(Source:  TCB-North America)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 24, 2013 at 3:25pm AST
EventsPotpourriRestaurants and DiningScuba DivingSnorkelingSpecialsWater SportsWindsurfingPermalink
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Monday, April 22, 2013

Bonaire Will Celebrate the New King’s Inauguration in Rincon

Monday, April 29th and Tuesday, April 30th, 2013, between 3:00 to 5:00 AM, Bonaire will celebrate the inauguration of Holland’s new king, Willem-Alexander.  All those on Bonaire are invited to join in the celebrations, which will include a festivo krioyo following the inauguration.


In the center of Rincon, there will be large monitor screens where everyone attending can follow the inauguration live directly from Amsterdam.  Various musical groups will put on a grand musical performance, and about 4:00 AM, Deputy Silvana Servilia will give a short speech.  Everyone is cordially invited to attend and experience this historic moment, when Bonaire’s new king ascends to the throne.  (Source:  Bonaire Island Government, images of the Royal Family from their 2011 visit to Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 22, 2013 at 2:50pm AST
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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Challenge #4 in InfoBonaire.com’s “So You Think You Know Bonaire” is Now Open

For those enjoying InfoBonaire’s trivia challenges, the fourth challenge is now open.  Click here to view the new challenge and see if you can answer and win.

Anyone over the age of 18 and not residing on Bonaire may be eligible to enter and win.  Challenge #3 was a difficult challenge, with no winners, so Challenge #4 now has two prizes:  A $50.00 gift certificate from AB Car Rental, as well as a $50.00 gift certificate from The Richter Gallery.  This Challenge will be open through May 9th, 2013, and the first two complete and correct answers will win the prizes, so don’t delay in submitting your response by clicking here.

To view the correct answer to Challenge #3, click here.  All challenges are governed by the Official Rules and Regulations, and these can be viewed by clicking here.  Good luck with Challenge #4!  (Source:  Infobonaire.com)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 18, 2013 at 12:51pm AST
PotpourriTourism AnnouncementsPermalink
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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Bistro de Paris Launches Divemasters Night at Zazu Bar, Starting Tonight

Visitors to Bonaire, especially those coming to dive and snorkel, enjoy socializing with their dive guides when the diving slows and the sun goes down.  Bistro de Paris is now making it easier than ever to rub elbows with the island’s dive crew.

Starting tonight, April 17, 2013, and each and every Wednesday, Bistro de Paris’ Zazu Bar will host a Divemasters’ Night.  Enjoy an evening on dry land while getting the chance to relax and swap stories with the local dive instructors and divemasters.  Bistro de Paris will feature an $8.00 special “dive-burger” or the regular bar menu is also available.  Come and enjoy!  (Source:  Bistro de Paris)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 17, 2013 at 11:26am AST
Restaurants and DiningPermalink
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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

CIEE Bonaire Offers Public Presentations and an Environmental Fair

As part and parcel of CIEE’s continuing commitment to the Bonaire community, there’s a variety of events this week hosted by the CIEE students and staff.  Public presentations are available on Wednesday and Thursday evenings this week, and this Sunday, the center will host an Environmental Fair featuring sustainability practices as well.

On Wednesday, April 17th, from 7:00 to 9:00 PM, the following presentations will be given:

-- Sedimentation surrounding a disturbed salina outlet in Bonaire, by Amber Packard, Portland State University
-- Underrepresentation of eels in AGRRA and REEF fish surveys in Bonaire, by John Tindle, University of Tulsa
-- A Diver’s Paradise: Evaluating the Cultural Significance of Bonaire’s Coral Reef, by Madeline Roth, St. Mary’s College of Maryland
-- Tubastraea coccinea: Distribution and habitat preference of an exotic coral in Bonaire, by Gabby Lout, Seattle University
-- Effectiveness of the burglar alarm hypothesis: A comparison between bioluminescent displays in dinoflagellates and abundance of copepods at various depths in Bonaire, by Hannah Wear, University of Washington
-- Flames of the night: Abundance and size distribution of the bearded fireworm Hermodice carunculata in Bonaire, by Holly Hillenbrand, University of Colorado
-- Changes in the rate of healing of the unicellular green alga Ventricaria ventricosa in acidified ocean water, by McCrea Sims, Wofford College

On Thursday, April 18th, from 7:00 to 8:30 PM, the following presentation/webinar will be given:

-- Ear and Sinus Barotrauma in Scuba Divers, by Marty McCafferty EMT-P, DMT-A and DAN Medical Information Specialist, Divers Alert Network.  This lecture is part of DANís Webinar program, where divers from around the world login to real-time lectures with DAN Medics.

Then, on Sunday, April 21st, from 1:00 to 3:00 PM, the spring semester students of the research station will host an Environmental Fair to promote sustainability and enhance environmental awareness.  This will be an informal event, with tables and posters providing information on environmental topics relevant to Bonaire, such as the lionfish invasion, safe SCUBA practices, eating sustainable seafood (see InfoBonaire.com’s sustainable seafood guide for Bonaire by clicking here), and many other topics. The students of CIEE along with organizations and businesses from around Bonaire will be exhibiting, so it’s a great opportunity to garner information on living a more sustainable life. 

All events will be held at the Research Station’s headquarters on Kaya Gobernador N. Debrot in Kralendijk.  (Source:  CIEE Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 16, 2013 at 2:52pm AST
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Monday, April 15, 2013

The Dive Friends Bonaire Quarterly Clean Up Dive Targets Fishing Line Under South Pier

On Saturday, April 13, 2013, volunteer divers gathered at Dive Friends Bonaire @ Dive Inn for the second quarterly underwater clean up dive of the year.  It was a beautifully sunny morning with perfect dive conditions, as is usual for Bonaire.  All of the participants collected their tanks from the dive center and then assembled for the safety briefing.

The eighty-nine volunteers that signed in were a mix of local residents and visiting tourists who all wanted to help the environment of Bonaire.  Asko Zuidam of Dive Friends Bonaire provided a safety briefing to address what items should be collected and explained that anything with coral growing on it or creatures living inside of it should be left behind.  He also gave an explanation of how to carefully remove fishing line so as not to damage delicate sponges or corals.

After the briefing, the divers entered the water at Playa Cha Cha Cha and swam a short distance over to Kralendijkís South Pier.  It was quite an experienced group and they spread out around the entire pier in buddy teams, filling the water with bubbles.  When their bags were filled with marine debris, they brought the bags to the surface and handed them over to the Dive Friends crew who were working as shore support.  Volunteers checked once again to be sure that no marine creatures had been inadvertently included.  Then, everything was counted, tallied for statistics, and disposed of responsibly. 

The South Pier is a working pier used by cruise ships and container ships and is also a very popular place to fish.  Therefore, it has a large amount of items that have blown overboard and unfortunately, a lot of discarded fishing line.  Discarded fishing line poses a serious threat of entanglement and drowning to endangered sea turtles, as well as other marine life.  Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire is targeting the issue with additional “line clean up dives” with tanks supplied by Dive Friends, but it requires constant vigilance around all of the piers of Bonaire. 

Over 1,476 items of marine debris were removed.  The most significant items removed were 365 pieces of fishing line.  The strangest things removed where a goat skull, a full can of sardines, a full can of SPAM, and an umbrella stand.  Other items included: 345 bottles, 193 plastic fragments, 74 plastic cups, 83 cloth fragments, 20 cardboard boxes, 18 ropes, 4 pairs of sunglasses, and much more.

That evening, all participants and their families were welcomed back for a Pot Luck BBQ and raffle at the recently remodeled Dive Friends Bonaire @ Hamlet Oasis.  Dive Friends Bonaire (with help from additional sponsors) provided drinks and main courses, while participants supplied side dishes.  Hamlet Oasis is also the location of the Debris Free Bonaire plastic collection container, so volunteers learned more about the new coastal clean-up initiative targeting floating marine plastic that washes ashore on Bonaireís east coast.

Sponsors for the event include:  Ouray Sportswear, Bonaire East Coast Diving, Deep Blue Gear, Bonaire National Marine Park, Selibon, Bonaire Food Group, Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire, Reef Safe Suncare, Your Scuba Store, Princeton Tec, Cressi, Body Glove, Native Outfitters, and Reef Footwear.

The next quarterly Dive Friends Bonaire underwater cleanup is scheduled for Saturday, July 13th, 2013. Additional information about the cleanups is available by clicking here.  All are welcome to join in.

For more information about the Debris Free Bonaire initiative, click here.  For more information about Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaireís fishing line removal initiative, click here(Source:  Dive Friends Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 15, 2013 at 4:09pm AST
Community ServiceEventsScuba DivingSnorkelingWater SportsPermalink
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Thursday, April 11, 2013

Karol Meyer Returns to Bonaire for the Buddy Dive Freediving Event

From May 26th through 31st, 2013, freediving champion Karol Meyer will return to Bonaire to present the fifth consecutive Buddy Dive Freediving Event. 

Karol has broken eight world records in her career to date, and she will share her secrets with special freediving clinics, camps, adventures, yoga classes, and breathing exercises.

A complete schedule of activities and pricing for the event is available by clicking here (available in PDF).  For additional information, visit Buddy Dive Resort’s web site by clicking here(Source:  Buddy Dive Resort)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 11, 2013 at 8:51am AST
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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

A Bonaire Dive Site Will Honor Prince Willem Alexander

The government of Bonaire, in consultation with STINAPA, will name a dive site in honor of Prince Willem Alexander, who will ascend to the throne on April 30, 2013 as His Majesty Willem Alexander.

Within the Dutch Kingdom, there will be many events commemorating this grand day, but since Bonaire is known around the world for its beautiful reefs and waters surrounding the main island and Klein Bonaire, and Prince Willem Alexander has shown his support of these resources, it’s fitting that a dive site be named after the new king.  The island government and STINAPA will soon locate and officially name the new dive site Rei Willem Alexander.

Prince Willem Alexander, along with his wife, Princess Maxima, plan a state visit to the Dutch Caribbean in November, 2013.  At that time, he will visit the new Bonaire dive site named in his honor. (Source:  Bonaire Island Government)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 10, 2013 at 3:28pm AST
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Bonaire Guitar Duo Announces Another Performance Tonight

The Bonaire Guitar Duo of Elger Verschuur and Terence de Haseth has announced another new performance scheduled for tonight, Wednesday, April 10, 2013.

Enjoy their mix of old and new pop songs combined with classical and flamenco guitar beginning at 6:00 PM tonight at Spice Beach Club.  Entrance to listen to their performance is free, but Spice offers the opportunity to enjoy a great oceanfront dining experience as well. 

Elger will be on Spanish guitar and violin, while Terence will be on cajon (percussion) and also his Spanish guitar.  This is a wonderful chance to sit and watch the sun set into the Caribbean Sea while listening to wonderful musical performers.  (Source:  Bonaire Guitar Duo)

Posted by Susan Davis on April 10, 2013 at 11:52am AST
Music and PerformancesPermalink
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