Sunday, April 30, 2006

Majestic Construction finally was able to bring out concrete to pour the walls for our constructed wetland at the Residence House. I need to go over to St Thomas soon to purchase furnishings for the Resident Manager's living area. It will be a great feeling to have the house completed and focus mainly on the Pavilion construction and possibly more Eco Tent building. We did a big road clean up the other day. Looks great now. It is amazing how stuff piles up. Storage is needed constantly. I can not wait to have a new maintenance building where everything will be stored in one area and easily accessed.
We waited a month for the concrete to come in. The Rock Cribs were delayed a week in shipping from Puerto Rico so we had the crew come down to help finish up on our Residence House and constructed wetland.
It turns out that not enough concrete was brought out for full completion of the wall so we will need to purchase more and mix it by hand to fill in the rest. Our staff party was held at Pastory Gardens last night. It was a nice evening. I need to get with Jared who took photos. Thank you Stanley for the party.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Here is the last phase of Eco Tents back in early October, 2005. You can see the platforms and framing. We completed these by December 15th, 2005.
Here they are now. The wind is eternal on this hillside as well as the waves along Drunk Bay. There were a lot of children here for Easter vacation. The holidays bring the most families. The days in between tend to bring couples and friends. This time of year usually denotes the end of season but over the last few years we have been booked up to 90% through July 4th. Contact our reservations office at 800-392-9004 to find out if we have any specials during the summer.

General Manager, Joe Feraco otherwise known as Papa Joe is walking with Shay Copeland, Concordia's Resident Manager. Our volunteer program begins soon. Estate Concordia offers a work exchange program where we ask you for 120 hours of labor for a months worth of lodging along with discounts on activities and food at Maho Bay. Read about the program at:

I started out as a volunteer back in 1986 when there were only two of us taking advantage of this cool opportunity. Now, we receive over a thousand applications per season. Everyone benefits from this exchange.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Happy Earth Day Everyone! Melody Smith is Maho Bay's Art Center's Marketing Director. She is talking to local school children about our art classes in glass blowing, ceramics, paper making, and textiles. There was a great turn out today for Earth Day in The Park in Cruz Bay.
Jared Hill is explaining how a solar panel activates the pump that triggers a fountain of water. The kids loved it!
Stanley Selengut and Maggie Day. Stanley had to go back home today but will return next Thursday and join us for our end of season party. He said the public hearing went well.

This electric car was one of the show pieces. I brought Stanley over to hint at a possible electric car at Concordia one day.

This turtle showed up. It is a very cool experience to swim in these clear waters and come across a hawksbill or green turtle casually gliding through the water beneath you.

A fun afternoon!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

It looks like someone has done some clearing on Parcel 30-1. The view has to be one of the most beautiful in the Caribbean; The British Virgin Islands along with the east end peninsula of St John. Let's take a look at that view.
Isn't that wondrous? There is the road that leads to Nanny Point.
Tortola's Sage Mountain looms in the distance. A beautiful rain forest lies within its peak. If you think St. John has some steep roads wait till you drive up some of the hills in Tortola. Remember, we drive on the left.

Here is a view from Parcel 11. A more tranquil and relaxing view. Sometimes, the subtleties of life are the most rewarding.

Think of the possibilities of a sight sensitive villa nestled on this hillside. Utilize the forces of nature such as the sun and wind. Create a home that blends into the hillside that provides a true Caribbean ambiance. Create the most enchanting home on the island and make it low impact; An Architectural Digest showcase.

Tomorrow is Earth Day. I need to go assist with setting up a booth in Cruz Bay with Jared and Melody who are from Maho Bay. We will be displaying glass art as well as perform solar demonstrations.

Another layer of rockcribs have been added. We had to order 75 more cribs yesterday from Puerto Rico. They should arrive next Tuesday. Stanley arrived yesterday. Maggie and Stanley had a public hearing today on expanding Maho Bay's Art Center. It is also Budget week therfore, all the managers will be busy putting their department finances together. Our end of season party should be coming up.

Here is a view of the Caribbean Sea from where the lower deck of the pavilion will rest.

I delivered more rock cribs. Segundo, Carlos, and Patrick unload them. We have a great crew working for us. Segundo has worked for Stanley for 20 some years.

Assistant Maintenance Manager Joseph and I assemble PVC fittings with thermometers inside. These will be connected to the Solar Showers in the new Eco Cabins. The water is heated in a black 50 gallon drum on the roof of each Eco Tent. The drum is sheltered by an A-frame plexiglass roof. The solar power operates an 8 amp refrigerator, a 12 volt water pump, 12 volt wall fans, 5 wall lights, and a voltage reader.

I stopped by Registration to get a coke and Dominique was there to greet me. Unfortunately for us, Dominique will be going back to San Francisco in a month. She has worked off and on for us over the past 6 years so hopefully she will get an itch to return. Everyone comes back to St. John. It's that kind of place. The idyllic lifestyle of the Caribbean sinks in your blood. We will miss you Dominique.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Maggie showed me Kat Sowa's beautiful rendition of the future yoga pavilion. The watercolor captures Glenn Speer's exquisite design of the Pavilion along with the surrounding environment. You can see the expansiveness of the view. A cafe will exist within it's arena along with massage rooms and...Who knows what we will think of. I can't help but see a bride and groom standing in that entry way. I look forward to walking down the graded road in the morning for a cup of coffee. The morning sounds are very soothing and refreshing. I love the soft flutes the morning doves play.

Hopefully, I can get a double expresso.

I can not believe it's the middle of April. Time just disappears here...

Thank you Kat for this beautiful rendition of Estate Concordia Preserve's Yoga Pavilion. The design is awesome. Thank you Glenn

Sunday, April 16, 2006

A beautiful Saturday morning at Salt Pond Beach. Estate Concordia Preserve is nestled on the distant hillside. I am standing where you would take the Ram Head trail or Drunk Bay trail. The snorkeling at Salt Pond Beach is superb. It is also a nice bay to take a swim. The most threatening creature in the water is the sea urchin. Never stand on or touch the coral reef. It is a complex world of tiny organisms living in colonies under the sea. A wonder to view. I haven't been snorkeling in a while. Night snorkeling is an exciting adventure. Be sure to go out with George at Maho Bay's Paradise Aqua Tours.
Here is a fine view of the clearing and wall construction for the Yoga Pavilion. I am on the Salt Pond Trail from Concordia. It is a 20 minute hike down to the beach or a short trip by car. We kept the cabins above the construction unoccupied. We appreciate everybody's cooperation. Norman Island and Peter Island in the distance.
Nanny Point Peninsula in the middle. Be sure to read the entry on our land that is for sale at Nanny Point. I just walked down to Drunk Bay. I made a short film for school here once when a sail boat had washed ashore and rested here for years. It was a film about finding a briefcase full of money and what the young lovers do with it. I made an A.
One night upon a full moon I took a hike with some friends to the cliffs of Ram head. Once we reached the cliffs of this dramatic coastline I looked back at Concordia and was so pleased with it's low lighting. The resort emitted such a warm presence, a place that looked like a haven for the spirit. The Yoga Pavilion is going to be an exquisite site from this perspective. Be sure to wear toe covered shoes as turks cap cactus dot the terrain on the trail to Ram Head. Always have water.
e15 will soon become Orchid 4. Butterfly orchids are a common site at Concordia. On my tour last Friday a guest said to me: "I wasn't expecting to be...but I am very impressed with Concordia." Happy Easter everyone!

Friday, April 14, 2006

I had a fun tour today of Concordia. Everyone falls in love with the place. I drove everyone back to Maho and stopped by the Glass Blowing Studio. Check out the art work at Resident Artist, Jake Barron is giving a class to a young Maho guest. Jake and Greg Lee have produced fine pieces of glass art over the years. It is a beautiful craft especially at night as the furnace glows among participants and spectators.
Concordia will have an art center similar to Maho where glass and aluminum will be recycled into art. Maggie brought Christian Thornton over to Concordia yesterday to discuss the future of the recycling center. Christian Thornton is well known within the glassblowing community for his exquisite designs. Christian will teach us how to set up an aluminum recycling area as well as creating art from the metal.
Gail Van De Bogart at Maho Bay Clayworks. She has potter wheels as well as a wood fire kiln. The art center has been a fabulous addition to Maho Bay and will make Concordia even more extraordinary. Her and I created the mosaic in the photo. Gail offers classes as well.

" Christian Thornton started his glass career in 1984 in Spokane, WA. After two years of graphic arts studies, he moved to New York to work exclusively in glass. By the late 90s, he was working as a conservator for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, teaching for UrbanGlass, and working as a glass artist. Now living and creating art in Oaxaca, Mexico, Christian is continuing in an effort to promote environmental approaches to the glass art field with formulated recycled glass and more efficient equipment design. He has work in collections around the US and Mexico, notably in the New Orleans Museum of Modern Art. Christian is currently working on an exhibition that will commence in the Galaria Quetzalli and travel to several other galleries and museums in Mexico for the duration of 2007. "

Always an impressive sky show at Concordia. A pleasant rain came through this morning. We needed it as the island has been looking a bit brown. It is great for the cisterns. The cabins are fun when a storm comes through. Be sure to check out the archives in this Blog.

I finally got the mulcher. The only vehicle I could tow it with was in the shop being repaired. However, Joseph fixed it. Allied Tool Rental brought the mulcher over from St Thomas and I had to tow it 10 miles from Cruz Bay to Salt Pond, a long and winding journey. 10 miles at 20 mph. It was especially harrowing when the mulcher came off the tow ball while I was on a main roadway in Cruz Bay with the Police coming up the hill. Allied did not put the pin in the hitch. Yet, all worked out as Cheeky from Allied came out to help put the mulcher back on the tow ball. The police were understanding as they drove by.
The rock cribs continue to be built up. The wall has gone up fast. This will be the retaining wall for the lower deck of the Pavilion.
This was once a dirt and bumpy road. We had it paved last year; 2000 feet of road. It was a very smooth operation. Currently, our guests park along the road but, in the future we plan to provide parking near the road that leads to the pavilion. Rumor has it we will put the parking area on top of our new maintenance building.
This is E13, one of the accessible cabins along the road. We constructed these in 2004. We had a Disabilities Conference in July of 2005. Multi Design for People, LLC and Stanley Selengut collaborated on bringing 4 individuals with disabilities and mobility issues to stay in our Accessible Eco Tents. It was a week long event that ended in an Island Conference held at Maho Bay's Pavilion. Senators and Public Officials were present to discuss the future of making The Virgin Islands more accessible for people with disabilities. ST. John restaurants such as Rumbalayan's, The Westin, Caneel Bay, Miss Lucy's, Aqua Bistro, Cinnamon Bay, Skinny Legs and of course, Maho Bay's Pavilion Restaurant all donated meals to the cause. Rhode Island School of Design had interns come and assist on constructing ramps and assist in activties. The participants had a great time.
I can envision the pavilion and imagine the sounds of nature flowing through it's design. I can imagine the weddings, musicians, artists, and writers all spellbound. The full moon will be a site to behold from the decks. I hear rumor we might set up a high powered telescope and let people get closer to the amazing starry nights. Bring several wishes as shooting stars are a common site.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

A car barge arriving to take the KIA and I along with a few others to St Thomas. This is the Roanoke. I love the palm trees. The Roanoke is the most accommodating of all the car barges. It takes about 35 minutes to get to the Red Hook dock in St. Thomas. The cost is between $42.00 and $50.00 for a roundtrip.

Then, you have the General. It needs a paint job. I missed the first two barges but was able to get on the Roanoke. This is also St John's new barge dock replacing the old loading place in downtown Cruz Bay. The traffic and congestion grew very tiresome for us all. Congratulations on this new dock. I wonder if they will open up the waterfront to shops or restaurants.

As you can see the view is pleasant. That is St Thomas in the distance. I needed to go over to pick up two bath vanity cabinets, interior doors, get new tires put on for the Kia, (Which is super cool to drive by the way)- tiles, ceiling fans, fluorescent lights, screws, mirrors...Home Depot was not much of a help in assisting my needs. Whereas, The Seachest was over extending with help. It turns out I purchased poor quality vanity cabinets. Termites would shred them within two years. So, I will need to return them. My work is teaching me about what it will take in building a home. In the states, the vanity cabinets I purchased would have fine but not here. Home Depot should not be selling that type of quality here and they should have helped me when I asked.

Here comes The General. It was a long day as the 6:30pm barge pulls in. The barges stop running at 7pm. That is St John in the distance.

I love riding on the barges or ferries at this time of day. The air feels very refreshing and the water is peaceful.

Monday, April 10, 2006

The guys did quite a bit of work Friday. I have to call Maho to see if I can get the dump truck to load a mulcher I rented. The KIA is not registered yet but should be later today. I finally will be able to get rid of the debris from the wetland construction. Maggie had to go to St Thomas to meet with DPNR (Dept of Planning and Natural Resources) . They handle the building permits.

I will have to go over to St Thomas Tomorrow. I get to take the KIA. It's like driving a bubble. We need several items for the downstairs Staff House. There is a Home Depot on St Thomas that satisfies many needs. We also use MSI and Seachest. Then there is always Kmart. No Walmart yet...surprisingly. The Virgin Islands has recently adopted the EDC (Economic Development Commission) program that gives businesses many economical advantages in buying local merchandise. Go to to find out all about life here in the US Virgin Islands.

More ground was dug out. This will be the future parking area for the Pavilion. Rock cribs will act as a foundation wall for the parking area. We are planning on keeping the road to the Pavilion graded instead of paved. This will keep a more natural feel to the environment. There is poetry in a morning walk on a dirt road as doves play their flutes in the trees, and the distant chimes of boats echo up the hillside.
Tranquil Salt Pond Bay. This is one of the views you will see if you are sitting on the lower deck of the Pavilion. Looks like a painting.

Oh yeah, the sunrise wasn't that bad either. This is currently E19 but once I finish with the numbered tiles it will become Sage Point 10. I can not express how wonderful the mornings are here.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Doug, Rich and Kevin. Have a safe journey Rich. Thank you for all you did for us.

Segundo is back! He will lead the crew on the Yoga pavilion. Segundo is well organized and and has a terrific spirit. It's nice to have you back.
Our new KIA dump truck. Now I am going to feel a part of the in- crowd on St. John. These make great utility vehicles. It is very challenging getting a vehicle registered on St. John as the DMV can try your patience. Thank you Maggie!