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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Bonaire’s Mangrove Info Center Rated in Top Ten Best Caribbean Adventures

The Mangrove Info Center offers a variety of mangrove tours via kayak or solar boat, and it has just been included in the Caribbean Journal’s Top Ten Best Caribbean Adventures.

The Mangrove Information Center Bonaire provides excursions into Bonaire’s protected mangrove forests.  Visitors to the center learn about the mangroves, one of the most unknown and most endangered environments on our planet.  The mangrove forest of Lac Bay in Bonaire is one of the best-preserved in the Caribbean. Those taking the two-hour excursion can snorkel through a passageway to an open-area “lake”, after having negotiated their way through the branches of the mangroves.  No fins are allowed in this area to keep the fragile environment protected, but those who snorkel can spot many marine animals including baby rays or upside-down jellies.

View the Caribbean Journal’s review on the Mangrove Info Center’s excursion by clicking here.  Visit the Mangrove Info Center’s web site by clicking here(Source:  Caribbean Journal)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 27, 2013 at 10:51am AST
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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Bonaire’s Student Chefs Arrive in Italy and Begin Their Internship

For the ninth year, Bonaire’s student chefs are thrilled to be spending a few weeks over the summer doing a special internship in Italy, to learn from the masters.  They will return to Bonaire with a culinary education that couldn’t be duplicated anywhere else!

These eight lucky students have arrived in Bologna, in the region of Italy called Emilia Romagna.  They are settling in for their internship and have already begun work with the director, Luca Franchini, and project coordinator, Claudio Ciresola, from the Carpi Nazareno school.

Of course, language can be an issue, so Miguel ("Poppy") Saragoza, a past student of the program, is acting as translator for Chef Fabio.  Poppy is fluent in Dutch, Italian, English, and, of course, Papiamentu.  He is now studying in the Netherlands to be a pastry chef, as he found his passion for cooking during his own internship in Italy, and he wants to pursue his career as a chef.  The students’ first day of school began with discussions on kitchen equipment, keeping a clean kitchen, and other basic information.

The Bonaire Insider will follow our student’s progress over the coming weeks.  (Source:  Bonaire Insider Reporter)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 26, 2013 at 9:13am AST
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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Bon Bida Spa and Gym Augments Specialty Spa Treatments

Bon Bida Spa and Gym has just recently announced an entire new menu of specialty spa treatments, including all types of massage, skin care treatments, and even medical pedicures.  All of these treatments are available now, but must be booked in advance.

Those who enjoy a massage can choose from a Swedish/relax massage, or massage designed especially for sports, foot reflex, trigger points, connective tissue, deep tissue, or therapeutic massage.  There is even the availability for a couples massage.

Skin care treatments include facials (basic or luxury), Epilate/Wax and Paint (Eyebrows), manicures, or pedicures.  There are pedicures to address the special medical needs of some, including pedicures designed for diabetic patients, or anti-stress foot and lower leg massage for those who have legs and feet which tire easily.

Full details and pricing for these spa treatments are available on the Bon Bida web site by clicking here(Source:  Bon Bida Spa & Gym)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 25, 2013 at 2:56pm AST
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Monday, June 24, 2013

Bonaire Insider Review--Mala’s Surinaamse

Surinam-style cuisine has always been popular on Bonaire, but sometimes it was difficult for tourists to find the small eateries which serve this food.  However, Mala’s Surinaamse has recently opened in Nord Salinja, and offers a take-away menu each Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for lunch.  Surinamese cuisine is extensive, since the population of Surinam came from many countries. Surinamese cuisine is a combination of many international cuisines including Hindustani, Creole, Javanese, Chinese, Dutch, Jewish, Portuguese, and Amerindian cuisines.

Located at Kaya Cacique #2, just off the main road of Kaya Amsterdam, visitors can stop in between 11:30 and 3:00 PM on the open days to sample her Surinam-style home cooking.  Plates run about $10.00 each, and some would provide ample lunch for two persons.

When arriving, just ask what she is serving that day, and she will give you a choice of three or four options.  Popular plates do sell out quickly, so for the best variety, plan to arrive late morning or just around noon.  The wait is minimal, normally just a few minutes.  Mala normally serves traditional roti, bamigoreng (noodles) or nasigoreng (rice) with chicken, and herehere, which is a shredded salt-fish preparation, which can be mixed for pika-pika (very hot), pika (medium heat) or no pika at all.  This salt-fish dish is served with white potatoes, sweet potatoes, and yuca (cassava).


The location is convenient for divers who want to pick up a quick lunch on which to picnic at their next dive location.  It’s very accessible before going to any of the northern dive sites, as well as when returning from Rincon.  The phone number for Mala’s Surinaamse is 527-9458.  (Source:  Bonaire Insider Reporter)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 24, 2013 at 5:00pm AST
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Friday, June 21, 2013

KiteRide Bonaire’s Competitors Strutted Their Stuff Today

Nearing the end of the week’s competition during KiteRide Bonaire, many of the competitors were out in force today on the water at Atlantis, also known as “Kite Beach,” to show off exactly what their years of training have accomplished.  From young to adult, the men and women took to the wind today.

In the second week of kiting competitions, this week’s event was a wakeboard event, where competitors had to execute a variety of difficult aerial moves.  The winds have been generous throughout the last two weeks of kiting competitions (first racing and then wakeboard), so these athletes could really show off their moves.



The women were not about to be out-shined by the men, though, and they were up in the air doing twists and twirls as well.  This sport is truly a disciplined sport, requiring lots of training, great focus, and excellent strength and athletic prowess.  Just a glance at some of the faces while the movements are being executed shows the concentration needed to perform the moves.



Competitors came from many countries around the world to compete in Bonaire’s first wakeboard competition.  Conditions were ideal, and the competitors have had a wonderful visit to Bonaire as well, sampling the famous watersports, dining, and hospitality of the people.



A full gallery of images from today’s competition is located on the Bonaire Insider Photo Gallery available by clicking here.  Feel free to peruse the images of these athletes strutting their stuff!




(Source:  Bonaire Insider Reporter, images by Susan Davis)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 21, 2013 at 7:16pm AST
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Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The BES Dollar To Be Newly Minted To Represent Holland’s New King

The BES (Bonaire, St. Eustatius, and Saba) Dollar was previously minted by the Royal Dutch Mint, on behalf of the Ministry of Finance, as a special coin for the Caribbean Netherlands; it has a value of one dollar and is accepted as legal tender on Bonaire, St. Eustatius, and Saba.  The coin will now be re-minted to add an image of Holland’s new King Willem-Alexander, in addition to the prior Queen’s image.

The newly minted coin will depict a double portrait to represent the change of rule which was announced on January 28, 2013.  A similar double portrait is used for the special two-euro coin in the European part of the Netherlands, as well. The coin’s back has the same design as the first BES dollar, which was published on the occasion of the adoption of the U.S. Dollar on January 1, 2011. The coin weighs nine grams and is made of brass. With a diameter of 26 millimeters, this currency is identical in size to the official U.S. dollar, the currency which the BES Islands utilize.  (Source:  Royal Dutch Mint)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 19, 2013 at 2:50pm AST
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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Unusual Biological and Archaeological Discoveries Made During the Recent Deep Sea Exploration

As a followup to the recent Bonaire Insider article about the deep sea exploration on Bonaire, some interesting results have been reported from last month’s exploration via submarine by marine biologist, Erik Meesters, and Lisa Becking of IMARES Wageningen UR.  Unusual animals, fossil reefs, and even archaeological items were found.

The researchers found fossil reefs at depths beyond 100 meters, formed during previous glacial periods when the sea level was much lower than it is now. This fossil reefs provide a hard surface and appear to be oases of biodiversity in a vast desert landscape of sand. The next challenge will be to find more of this type of underwater using acoustic surveys and then explore these areas with a submarine.

In addition to biological discoveries, researchers also found archaeological discoveries​​, such as Spanish olive urns from the 18th century and 100-year-old gin bottles.

During the submarine explorations, the researchers collected fish, sponges, corals, shells and sea-urchins. Together with taxonomists from the Naturalis Biodiversity Center, the researchers will begin the process of naming these species.  This information is essential to protect the nature, as well as shape sustainable plans for the management of the area, as it’s imperative to understand the ecologic processes that maintain the diversity at the area.  The preliminary results of this first deep sea exploration have been published and are available by clicking here (in Dutch).  (Source:  IMARES Wageningen UR)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 18, 2013 at 1:38pm AST
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Monday, June 17, 2013

Bon Bida Spa and Gym Announces Summer Class Schedule

Bon Bida Spa and Gym has just announced their new summer class schedule, which goes into effect today, Monday, June 17th, 2013.  Bon Bida’s classes are popular with both residents and visitors alike, as they offer a wide variety of fitness levels and different interests.

Classes run the gamut from Pump, Balance, Spinning, Zumba, Yoga, TRX, Lady TRX, or classes that specifically target the abdominals.  There is certainly something for everyone, no matter the fitness level.  The instructors can assist those taking the classes with adjustments so that the exercises can be made more difficult, or easier, to match the class to the participants’ individual fitness needs.

Rosita Paiman will be joining the instructional staff for the Zumba, Balance, and Pump classes.  She has worked within the fitness world on Bonaire for a number of years, and she is a knowledgeable nutrition expert as well.  Elisabetta Maccari will be adding in a twice-weekly yoga session, joining existing trainers Henk, Ingrid, Elise, and Mark.

The new schedule can be found by visiting Bon Bida’s web site by clicking here.  A downloadable version, suitable for printing and keeping handy for reference, can be found by clicking here(Source:  Bon Bida Spa & Gym)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 17, 2013 at 4:09pm AST
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Thursday, June 13, 2013

Bistro de Paris and Zazu Bar Host Mexican Happy Hour with Mariachi

This Saturday evening, from 6:30 to 8:00 PM, enjoy a new Happy Hour at Bistro de Paris and Zazu Bar with live mariachi music and Mexican tapas.

The group, Mariachi Tropical, will be serenading those sitting on the harborside, and Alli, direct from Mexico, will join them for an authentic Mexican sound.

The tapas will be Mexican, so be sure to stop by and listen, eat, and drink “south of the border style” this Saturday evening.  (Source:  Bistro de Paris)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 13, 2013 at 11:27am AST
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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Kite Ride Bonaire Gearing Up for June 17th through 22nd, 2013

In the island’s third “wind” event this month, Kite Ride Bonaire begins this Monday, June 17th, and continues through Saturday, June 22nd, providing a Pro wakestyle competition with top riders from around the world and parties every night.

Each day at Atlantis (also known as “Kite Beach"), there are a host activities from 9:30 AM through 5:00 PM, including a Hangtime Contest, Pro Rides where stunts will be done on a Slider Park, and a Charity Downwinder. 

Each evening starting at 5:00 PM, the party will continue at different places around the island, including City Cafe, Spice Beach Club, and Sorobon Beach Resort.

Parking is not allowed on the beach, so shuttles are available from the Cargill Salt Pier area to Atlantis every day between 9:30 AM and 5:00 PM. Winds have been whistling for all the island’s latest wind events, so this one should be just as great!  View the entire daily schedule by clicking here(Source:  Kite Ride Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on June 12, 2013 at 3:48pm AST
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