Ideally located on the Atlantic coast of Saint-Martin, Orient Bay, due to its exceptional touristic appeal and white sands, easily compares to its best known Riviera counterparts. This exquisite setting attraction, bearing an under-water protected reserve, offers an unforgettable view on the islands of Green Cay, Pinel, Tintamarre and Saint-Barthelemy.
Orient Bay is dotted with luxury villas and relaxing hotels dedicated to HNWI clients and members of the international Jet Set. The appeal of Orient Bay, elected in 2015 the most glamorous beach of the Caribbean, is due to its exceptional beauty and local entertainment: restaurants, any water sports and activities or laziness. On turquoise waters, you will be spoilt for activities. At Orient Bay you will be able to chose from, as for an athletic afternoon : kite surfing, windsurfing, Hobbie-cat, kayak, Hawaiian pirogue, surfing, paddle, diving, snorkeling, ascentional parachute, water ski, jet ski, beach-volley etc.
Discover otherwise inaccessible beauty spots and surrounding islets, on sea scooters with a guide or dive amongst tropical fish, will make unforgettable memories. A butterfly farm, nearby, is also worth a visit.
The name should originate from its geographical location. However, on ancient maps, it is stated Orleans bay, and not Orient. As a matter of fact, close by towards the Dutch part of the Island, a village called Orleans Quarters is still encountered.
It is also mentioned as Flemish Bay. The origin of this spelling allows for legends. Indeed there was the looting of this coast by the Netherlands on June 22nd 1676, hence the Flemish armada. However, in French, Flemish spells almost the same as pink flamingoes, now extinct, but numerous at the time in the salted ponds. Since then, pelicans on the Dutch side, and snowy egrets on the French side have since then replaced the native birds.
Whatever the case, Orient Bay is « The » beach to be. Its geological privileged setting results from a “tombolo” (sand accumulation) sliced between the Chevrise pond and the fossil tombolo on its east side. This is a flat sand area leading to the Salines d’Orient pond and backed by the morne Griselle (alt.: 58 m). It is itself the foot of one of the ridges leading to the top of Pic Paradis (alt.: 420m). In its centre, at the foot of an isolated butte of 23 meters height, by the beach, the Petit-fond gully emerges.
In 1985 it was free and virgin of any constructions. A first development proposal failed, but thanks to the French tax shelter fiscal law « PONS » of 1986, numerous real estate projects have emerged since. They had to benefit from exemptions from the littoral d’ORNANO Directive of August 29th 1979, as are reputed non constructible the first 100 meters of coastal line. On top of these, numerous temporary occupying permits allow for all beach bars and restaurants for its entire length. All destructions following the 1985 Luis cyclone are now long past memories.
In 1948 the two large ponds were used in a semi industrial way: Chevrise by Charles de MERY d’ARCY (Notary) associated to Auguste-François PERRINON, Salines d’Orient by Pierre Daniel BEAUPERTHUIS. He was the father of the famous doctor Louis Daniel BEAUPERTHUY, well known for his discovery of the yellow fever transmission ways. The colonial style house that remains on his estate, a stone throw from Orient Bay, is, following the tragic death of his final owner in 2015, taken over since 2018 by the association “THE SEA FRUITS” which intends, in due course, to restore the gardens, the house and its contents to its former glory.
Since the 70’s, the far right hand side of the beach is a naturist safe heaven.