The hotel and villa packages for the 2012 St. Croix Food & Wine Experience, which is being held from April 18 to April 22,...

Hotels and private villas on the island of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands are offering special packages for the 12th annual St. Croix Food & Wine Experience, a top international food and wine festival.

From three-night packages to week-long stays, each vacation package offers a different experience during the St. Croix Food & Wine Experience. From a five-bedroom oceanfront villa to a five-star beach resort, there is a St. Croix vacation package to suit all tastes during the food and wine festival.


The hotel and villa packages for the 2012 St. Croix Food & Wine Experience allow visitors to secure tickets to events that always sell out and access to celebrity chefs.

Part of the 12th annual St. Croix Food & Wine Experience, the 2012 Gourmet Dinner at Tutto Bene was scheduled to feature Chef Govind Armstrong and sommelier Anthony Giglio

Each hotel and/or villa donates back 10 per cent of the price of the special package to The St. Croix Foundation. Packages need to be booked with the hotel or villa. Hotel taxes and service charges are additional unless otherwise noted. Packages must be booked by March 1, 2012.

Packages are as follows:

Buccaneer: $2,445  for five nights, double occupancy. ‘The Buccaneer Culinary Getaway’ includes five nights in oceanview accommodations, a five-day car rental and tickets to A Taste of St. Croix (the biggest event in the St. Croix Food & Wine Experience),. The package price also includes a culinary welcome turn-down amenity, plus full American breakfast daily, a welcome cocktail, live music entertainment nightly and more. Taxes and service charges are included. The Buccaneer offers two beaches, three restaurants, tennis, golf, a spa and 340 acres of oceanfront grounds. To book The Buccaneer Culinary Getaway package call 800-255-3881 or visit www.thebuccaneer.com.

Hotel Caravelle: $940 for three nights, double occupancy. The waterfront Hotel Caravelle, located in the historic town of Christiansted, is offering a three-night package (on the nights of April 18 to April 20) based on double occupancy in a deluxe oceanfront room. The package is $940 and includes two tickets to Food Fight, A Taste of St Croix and the Sunset BBQ, as well as a sailing trip to Buck Island National Park. To book, call Hotel Caravelle at 340-773-0687.

A Taste of St. Croix is the main event of the annual St. Croix Food & Wine Experience festival. Tickets sell out in 20 minutes and 1,500 people attend. The event is held at the Divi Carina Bay Resort

Divi Carina Bay Resort: $225 per person, per night. Divi Carina Bay Beach Resort, the perennial host venue for A Taste of St. Croix, offers the ‘Taste of St. Croix Package’. The hotel deal includes a ticket to the event, oceanfront accommodations, all meals and beverages for a minimum three-night stay. The package is good from April 16 through April 23. The Taste of St. Croix 2012, the 12th annual edition of the event, is set for Thursday evening, April 19 on the resort’s 1,000-foot beachfront. The booking window is from February 28 through March 15. To book, call 877-773-9700 or visit www.divicarina.com.

Palms at Pelican Cove: $2,170 for four nights, double occupancy. The Palms at Pelican Cove offers beachfront accommodations for its four-night package from April 18 to April 22. The special offer is based on double occupancy, includes taxes and offers savings of more than $270 on the regular room rate. The package includes two tickets to A Taste of St Croix (April 19), the Sunset BBQ (April 20), and Wine in the Warehouse (April 21). To book call 340-718-8920 or visit www.palmspelicancove.com.

Sea View Play Villa: $11,500 for a five-bedroom villa with pool, based on a four-couples party. This package includes a four-course gourmet dinner prepared by celebrity Chef Roberto Treviño of Puerto Rico and tickets to events that support the St. Croix Food & Wine Experience. The three-night villa package is suitable for a reunion, business group or a girls getaway. On April 19, the group receives access to A Taste of St. Croix, on April 20 the guests are given a gourmet dinner at the house by Chef Roberto Treviño and on April 21, the group is provided with tickets to Wine in the Warehouse. For more information or to book the package, call 917-903-6642, e-mail info(at)seaviewplay(dot)com or visit www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p207955.

Southern Breezes: $3,000 for seven nights, based on four guests. Southern Breezes features excellent views of the Caribbean, elegant West Indian décor and all the amenities of a luxury resort. With easy access to a white sand beach from the villa’s private staircase, sunbathing, snorkeling and beach combing are only a few steps away. The two-bedroom villa is walking distance to the location that hosts A Taste of St. Croix, the main event during the St. Croix Food & Wine Experience. The seven-night package includes four tickets to A Taste of St. Croix (April 19) and four tickets to Kids Cooking (April 21). For more information visit www.southernbreezesvilla.com and to book call (310) 430-1420.

This photograph shows the ocean-facing verandah of the Southern Breezes Villa on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands

The St. Croix Food & Wine Experience showcases the diverse cuisine and wine available on St. Croix. The multi-day event includes gourmet dinners, wine seminars, wine auctions, and the annual culinary competition, A Taste of St. Croix.

For 2012, the festiva’s schedule includes:

Grand Gourmet Vintner Dinner at Tutto Bene on Tuesday, April 17. This is the largest wine dinner of the week, both in the number of guests it accommodates (150) and in the amount of money donated to charity (100 per cent of profits);

Food Fight, held at at Eat@CaneBay, a beach bar and restaurant, on Wednesday, April 18. In this event, celebrity and island chefs team together to compete in a series of wacky challenges;

Wine Seminars for trade and wine aficionados alike, held in the starting in the late morning and ending in the early afternoon on Wednesday, April 18;

Wine Dinners,  held at various local restaurants on Wednesday, April 18;

A Taste of St. Croix, where local restaurants provide attendees with a sampling of their cuisines. Winemakers, rum distilleries, and breweries also offer samples of their creations. This event sells out in 20 minutes and more than 1,500 guest attend and visiting celebrity chefs, winemakes and VIPs judge the food and wines. The event is being held at Divi Carina Bay Resort on Thursday, April 19;

Each annual St. Croix Food & Wine Experience features Cork & Fork dinners. This Cork & Fork Dinner, during the 10th annual festival in 2010, was held at Estate Cane Garden by Chef Tim Love

Cork & Fork Dinners on Friday, April 20. These elegant, intimate dinners of 12 to 20 guests have a visiting celebrity chef paired with a visiting winemaker and are given  in unusual locations such as in historic homes, organic farms and even in the ballroom of Government House;

Sunset BBQ, on April 20. Held at historic Fort Fredrik during the Sunset Jazz event, this event features three bars, two grilling stations, a dessert station and room to roam and dance;

Kids Cooking, on Saturday, April 21. Introduced in 2011, the event sees celebrity and local chefs offer simple, fun and healthy cooking classes for children;

Wine in the Warehouse on Saturday, April 21. This event features live music, wine tastings, cocktail samplings and small bites and is held in the warehouse of a local wine distributor; and

Cuisine on The Green Golf Tournament, on Sunday, April 22. Carambola Golf Course hosts a fun tournament with bites and booze at the tees. Non-golfers are invited to sample the tastings via a golf-cart tour.

The St. Croix Food & Wine Experience festival benefits the St. Croix Foundation, a non-profit community foundation which administers a number of local programs. The event was started in 2001 by restaurant owners Katherine Pugliese of Eat@CaneBay and Kelly Odom of Tutto Bene and has become on the Caribbean’s best-known food and wine festivals.

To search for low fares, click here. To find hotel deals in St. Croix, click here.

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