Sails Up! Countdown for the 33rd Annual St. Maarten Heineken Regatta; Events Scheduled Feb. 28 - Mar. 3, 2013

Three Days of Competition, Concerts, Events and Island Fun

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PRESS RELEASE #239


PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten (Feb. 25, 2013) - Sailors and enthusiasts get ready for some fun in the sun and yacht racing during the 33rd Annual St. Maarten Heineken Regatta taking place Feb. 28 - March 3, 2013. The traditional three-day event kicks off the racing season with two pre-events, the Budget Marine Match Racing Cup, a one-day match racing event on Feb. 26th which will bring the world's best match racers to the island for a day of intense sailing and the Gill Commodore's Cup on Feb. 28, a one-day race for spinnaker classes only. Both events take place just prior to the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta to excite race-goers for the main event.

The St. Maarten Heineken Regatta is an annual competition that has become a world-wide and one-of-a-kind sailing event with exciting entertainment, musical performances and parties that have attracted thousands of sailors and enthusiasts to the island over the years. The actual competition consists of round-the-buoys contests and point-to-point destination races against the backdrop of St. Maarten's breathtaking coastal views.

Each night during the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta there is a veritable battle of the bands, with the celebration ending with an awards ceremony on Sunday night. This year, legendary Motown/Funk and Soul Band, The Commodores, will headline the event. Famous previous headliners have included The Black Eyed Peas, Ziggy Marley, The Wailers, Shaggy, The Marley Brothers, Jimmy Cliff and Wyclef Jean.

St. Maarten has it all, from cafés and sizzling beachside barbecues; boutique hotels and high-rise resorts and some of the best shopping and nightlife in the Caribbean, there is truly something for everyone.

Sailing enthusiasts and competitors from around the world will join this year's St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, including many local names that are familiar and long-time Caribbean racers such as Ian Hope-Ross's Melges 32, Kick 'em Jenny; Richard Wesslund's J/120, El Ocaso; Sergio Sagramoso's latest Lazy Dog, a J122; Jamie Torres' Melges 32, Smile and Wave and at least 5 Melges 24's, including Budget Marine/Gill, which will make a separate Melges class a possibility.

The St. Maarten Heineken Regatta will also showcase some of the grandest, most impressive super-yachts participating in the Caribbean 600 ocean race. This remarkable contingent includes Idea of London, Reichel Pugh designed 78ft Maxi and Med Spirit, Welbourn 92' Super Maxi Another feature you don't want to miss is the separate Gunboat class, including 'Slim', 'Elvis', 'Panthera', 'Tribe', 'Tiger Lily' and 'Coco de Mer'.

St. Maarten Heineken Regatta

For over three decades, the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta has showcased the top boats and sailing-and has become equally famous for its world-class slate of parties and musical entertainment-in the Caribbean. Now recognized by sailors around the planet as one of the sailing world's best regattas, each year the event lives up to its worthy motto: Serious Fun.

For full information on the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, including results, photos, videos, party and band information, and much, much more, visit www.heinekenregatta.com or contact regatta@heinekenregatta.com

For more information on St. Maarten visit the official site of the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau at www.VacationStMaarten.com.

St. Maarten

St. Maarten is the smallest island in the world to be shared by two nations, Kingdom of the Netherlands and France, creating a European-influenced vibe with a Caribbean flair. As "the culinary capital of the Caribbean," St. Maarten offers an eclectic array of cuisine fusion for food lovers with more than 365 restaurants, one for each day of the year to satisfy the tastes of every palate and pocketbook.

Located at the northern end of the Lesser Antilles, the island's 37 square miles has 37 breathtaking beaches and is home to many historical and family-oriented attractions. During the day, watersport enthusiasts can take full advantage of the island's scuba diving and snorkeling facilities. The capital of Philipsburg offers duty-free shopping with a bustling city atmosphere, while 14 casinos and numerous nightclubs provide endless entertainment.

Accommodations are varied and include elegant private villas, family oriented resorts, quaint cottages and luxury spa resorts. Air service is available to Princess Juliana International Airport from numerous U.S. and Canadian cities as well as from Europe, South America and the Caribbean.

Find St. Maarten on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/VacationStMaarten and follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/StMaartenTravel.

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