Steve Sasman is the amazing guy behind the Vacation Rental Owner’s Guide website. He’s a real vacation rental owner who shares his tips through blog posts, free ebooks, video tips and so much more! Steve was kind enough to interview me for his “Owner Spotlight” video series. He wanted me to talk to his audience about my St Barts villa Domingue, my dear 4-bedroom villa located in Pointe Milou.
Thank you Steve for this opportunity! Discover Villa Domingue as I walk you through the house in this video.
Watch the video here or read its transcript below.
Owner Spotlight Interview with Thibault Masson of St Barts Villa Domingue
Hello and welcome to another edition of the vacation rental owners spotlight. Today, I am with Thibault Masson, who has a great place in St. Barts. So, say hello Thibault, let’s get this interview started.
Hello Steve, hello to everyone, thank you for having me on the show.
Let’s talk about how you got started in St. Barts and the whole story.
We came on a holiday on St. Barths. St. Barts is a very small island and we fell in love with it and we desperately wanted to find a way to come back. The only way for us to be able to afford a vacation home was to make it a vacation rental. That’s the whole truth, there’s nothing, you know, secret here.
If you actually know St. Barts, it’s a French island in the Caribbean, it’s very tiny, it’ s like 8,000 people living there. It’s like a French village from the Côte d’Azur in Southern France, transplanted into the Caribbean. It’s a very small island but it’s very élite
All the beaches are different from one and another. It’s weird because in December and January it changes a lot. It becomes a playground for the rich and famous. Last week, there was Kate Moss and Leonardo DiCaprio on the island and Caroline Kennedy, the daughter of the US president.
Again, the only way for us to afford was to open it 90% of the year to rental guests.
Fantastic plan and it sound like its a really special place.
Yes, it is a really nice place. Compared to Bali, where I am right now, of course St.Barts is really dry, it is a very different kind of landscape. The big charm of the house is with the view. The view is breathtaking, it’s really amazing. Whenever I’m there, and I’m lucky enough to be able to work from there, I’m really happy.
What’s really important for me, I mean, I have a guest book, like an actual written guest book and some people come back year after year and enjoy reading the guest book themselves because they see their own memories in the guest book. But reading what guests write in the guestbook is very interesting: People actually talk to us, they talk to us in the guestbook and we kind of learn what they do and why they chose to come to St. Barths.
They come to the island for a special occasion, it’s a beautiful luxury island so they come here to celebrate something usually to really make it something special.
So, the view is great and what we are trying to do is try to make it a home away from home…
First, Villa Domingue is my home, I spend a lot of time here because I live between St. Barths and Bali. For example, the living room has to be very comfortable. So, the house is big enough for two people to be able to stay in the living room, two others lounging in the lower deck and have peace and nobody can see them. So, we want also to have people have their private moments in the house.
Also, what was very interesting to me is that 80% of the guests are Americans. St. Barths is like a French island with 80% of the guest are Americans and everybody can speak English and all the local French people can speak English, which is surprising.
The guests here cook a lot, I was surprised. I created a very nice kitchen and it was just for me because I am French, I like cooking. Actually, my guests cook a lot and it’s a special time. They are usually very busy in their daily lives. Like the wife could be a lawyer and he can be a CEO of a company. They don’t see each other a lot and it takes a very special time in a vacation, to a go to a French supermarket and get some fresh produces and cook for themselves and their family. It’s amazing, people enjoy these moments because you know how life is hectic nowadays and have these special moments.
It seems rather incredible and you’re pretty much making all of us other owners who just own a place in the United States feel pretty jealous. Once again, very excited and happy that you come on and share some time with us. Thanks so much.
Thank You Steve for the opportunity. Bye everyone!
Thank you Steve for letting me babble about my St Barts villa Domingue. Find more vacation rental tips on his Vacation Rental Owner’s Guide website.