Grand Case, an old fishing village, has hosted the biggest craft market on Saint Martin on Tuesday evenings in February, March, and April for nearly twenty years now. This initiative originally aimed to promote the area’s tradespeople. Over the years, it has evolved into THE artistic and culinary event of Saint Martin. Nowadays, Grand Case Tuesdays are a cultural showcase beyond compare.
For ten weeks or so, craft stalls, local gastronomy, cultural activities, and musical performances brighten up this typical village. Grand Case becomes a stage of expression and emotion for the local culture. This is a much-awaited event for both tourists and islanders. The party spirit returns every year for Grand Case Tuesdays, offering a host of surprises, musical beats, colors, and flavors. What better than entertainment, art, and culinary delights to unite us around the beating heart of Saint Martin?
Parades and Music
The carnival parades are a key part of Grand Case Tuesdays. Dancers adorned with feathers, beads, sequins, and colorful costumes parade in a whirlwind of glitter to the rhythmic sound of percussion and brass instruments. Folk dance troupes come from every corner of the island. Musicians take to the main street, setting the beat that invites visitors to share the magic of the shows, and encourages them to try traditional dances to soca music and other Caribbean sounds. It’s a musical stage open to all talents, new voices, and musical virtuosos waiting to be discovered, as well as vocal performances by the school children of Saint Martin.
Grand Case Tuesdays are also an opportunity for artists and craftspeople who come in great numbers to exhibit their works. Dozens of them set up their stalls on the boulevard. It’s your chance to find all sorts of unique creations made by these independent designers. There’s jewelry made from natural materials found on the island (volcanic stone, shells, freshwater pearls), bags, wallets made from coconut shell or hemp, and customized sarongs colored with natural dyes. Grand Case Tuesdays also attract many artists who propose oils on canvas, many-hued watercolors, and handcrafted, hand-painted ukuleles. A painting of Saint Martin or the Caribbean is easy to pack in your suitcase, which is why local craftsmanship is placed under the spotlight. Photographers display their best shots and you might be tempted by an amazing picture that will transport you to Saint Martin, even after you’ve left our island! Creators of organic cosmetics (shower gel, soap, sunscreen, mosquito repellent) will show you all the care that goes into making their products, to protect your skin as well as nature. You’ll also find decorative items such as candles, ceramics, handcrafted pottery, and hand-painted lamps to adorn your interior.
Food and Other Delights for your taste buds
It wouldn’t be a party without the culinary delights of Saint Martin. Food stalls bursting with flavors and spicy aromas entice visitors to discover the island’s traditional creole foods, which are constantly being revisited by the locals. Those who prefer spending their time wandering the streets and don’t want to miss a single show can grab traditional dishes like chicken colombo or ribs on the go. All the creole restaurants sell their dishes to go and the tables of small eateries called lolos are open to everyone. You can even try roast meats from local farmers. Saint Martin boasts its own beef industry, and many restaurants give it pride of place.
The numerous fine dining options on Boulevard de Grande Case, which showcase all the gourmet savoir-faire of Saint Martin, remain open and in great demand. You can dine on the terrace or indoors behind the picture windows that open onto the street, allowing you to enjoy the spectacle and continue to soak up the Grand Case Tuesday atmosphere.
Getting to Grand Case
Grand Case is a town located in the northwestern part of the island of Saint Martin. It is very easy to reach. Its main street, where the event takes place, is closed to traffic on Grand Case Tuesdays. Hordes of people descend on the stalls and restaurants from 6pm until 10pm. This means you must park further away and walk over. The entire town center and seafront are car-free zones.
We recommend you park just outside Grand Case. You’ll find spaces on the parking lot opposite the cultural center, and in the adjacent side streets.