Moon Gate Newsletter Issue 17

Posted :
March 1, 2023
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February is the month of love and this month’s newsletter gives you the lowdown on why Antigua and Barbuda can’t be beaten on romance. The thrilling RORC Caribbean 600 sailing race, a sneak peek at upcoming Restaurant Week, and we update you on the latest happenings the Moon Gate Hotel & Spa.

All this and more to come  – in Issue 17 of our Moon Gate newsletter.

Valentine’s Day may have its roots in a 5th century Christian feast day honouring a martyr named Valentine. But the very first Saint Valentine’s Day took place in Paris (where else) on February 14th 1400.

Last year, the twin island nation was nominated as the world’s most romantic destination by the prestigious World Travel Awards. 

That’s just one reason why more and more people choose here to get hitched each year.

This issue of our newsletter reveals more details about why when it comes to love Antigua & Barbuda are the Caribbean’s romance capital.

Things are continuing to take shape at the Moon Gate site which remains on schedule to open at the end of the year. This month has seen new lands cleared and boundaries demarcated for Phase Two of the project.

Excavated limestone has been removed from in front of the seventh building to pave the way for construction to start.

Meanwhile, work is well advanced on the first four buildings with staircases and landings created in buildings one and two.

Back filling behind the first four buildings is complete up to the first floor entrance walkway.

Once complete, the development will comprise 80 impeccably styled rooms set across 3 acres, plus an a la carte restaurant, bar and spa featuring locally sourced natural products.

Cocobay’s award-winning bartender and mixologist Altino Spencer knows
a thing or two when it comes to stirring, shaking and muddling. And who needs alcohol when his invigorating ‘Virgin Pineapple and Basil Smash’ mocktail is on the menu?

Even better, Altino’s recipe can be easily recreated at home to add more romance to the month of love.

Follow the recipe step-by-step

Start by placing a few leaves of local basil into a cocktail shaker.

Add 2oz of pure Antiguan black pineapple juice.

Next, add 1.5oz of homemade sweet and sour syrup comprising one part lime, one part sugar.

Throw in some ice, shake for 10 seconds and slowly pour into a chilled martini glass.

Top with a basil garnish.

In January 2019, four Antiguan women entered the history books when they became the first all-Black team to row across an ocean.

Kevinia Francis, Elvira Bell, Christal Clashing and Samara Emmanuel arrived home as heroes when they completed the 3,000-mile Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

The Atlantic rowing challenge kicks off each December in the Canary Islands and ends in Nelson’s Dockyard. The Team Antigua Island Girls are now in training for their toughest venture yet. They intend to row the mighty Pacific Ocean which has bigger waves and colder climes.

The team hope to complete this summer’s rowing challenge in under 40 days.

Read the full version of our February 2023 newsletter here.

It includes more about the inaugural edition of Antigua and Barbuda Restaurant Week gets underway on May 7th. Visit for more details. Recent weeks have seen an array of activities on the high seas – the RORC Caribbean 600, a non-stop 600-mile race around 11 islands, also Jolly Harbour Yacht Club’s Valentine’s Regatta once again brought sailors out in droves for the spirited two-day event.