THE ST. CROIX HISTORY & ART TOUR: On Thursday, December 1, 2016, I embarked on a very exciting and special journey to my beloved St. Croix, in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The catalyst for this special journey was a lecture given by St. Croix native, internationally renowned artist Roy Lawaetz at my BROOKLYN ART SALON on Saturday, March 12, 2016. His Taino inspired artwork and images of St. Croix stimulated great interest in St. Croix. One of the attendees, Jill Manielli requested that I put a tour together. Hence the St. Croix History & Art Tour was born. As a sixth generation Crucian and descendant of famous Crucian, William Leidesdorff, one of the founders of San Francisco, this project was a labor of love.
The St. Croix History & Art Tour was a seven day stay at the Caravelle Hotel, in the historic town of Christiansted. The tour is a new exclusive travel concept, expertly, curated; guided history and visual arts travel experience. It is a new offering in leisure travel marketing bringing guests to spectacular St. Croix. The tour lauds St. Croix with an in-depth journey into history and the visual arts in St. Croix.
Thirteen of us embarked on this journey. The St. Croix History & Art Tour attendees travelled from three different states (NY, DC & VA) with a broad professional composition that blended very well from the start. My aim was to provide in-depth historical content normally regulated to museums with an introduction to the visual arts in St. Croix coupled with the ambiance of our festive Caribbean lifestyle
The journey was magical in every sense. It was wondrous as we travelled on a rainy day with the ambiance of the rain forest as our backdrop in an open-air truck, vines striking the sides of the vehicle through spectacular scenic routes. We visited historic sites, and were hosted at my fellow artist studios, lectured by historians, dined both indoor and outdoor venues, visited beaches and danced to local music. One of the highlights of the journey was our kick-off event-welcome program reception: sponsored by Commissioner Doty and her team, USVI Department of Tourism. The theme was “Celebrate Art & Culture St. Croix | Pop-Up Gallery of (146) slides of art work of (28) St. Croix artists. The festive evening honored and recognized the world-class artists of St. Croix who contributed to the arts & culture of the island and was well attended by all the artists on the island.
The tour was seamless, full of enthusiasm and excitement and made a big impact on the attendees. There was incredible energy among the group as I led them through an exploration and discovery of my beautiful St. Croix. It was extremely rewarding to share and unveil the jewel that is St. Croix. I am now working on our next tour scheduled for Thursday, December 1-7, 2017.
Frederiksted Beach, Sand Castle on the Beach, Beachside Cafe
KICK-OFF Welcome reception, at Caravelle Hotel, sponsored by USVI Department of Tourism. Attended by St. Croix Artists, St. Croix History & Art Tour attendees, USVI Department of Tourism representatives.
International artist, Roy Lawaetz Art Studio, "Modulat Triangular System" Art work
Fort Christiansvaern tour with History & Art Tour group
History & Art Tour, Caravelle Hotel
Caravelle Hotel, History & Art Tour, 7 day stay, Historic town of Christiansted, St. Croix