Our good friends on St. John have recently launched a new endeavor that will continue to help immortalize a historic sugar mill plantation on the island. The Windmill Bar is the newest collaborative effort between Cruz Bay Music and Neptune’s Lookout (formally known as Susannaberg Plantation Ruins), and it features a new 24-hour webcam that overlooks Caneel Bay and St. Thomas from the bar’s roof.
Neptune’s Lookout owner Ronnie Jones inherited his portion of the plantation property from his grandfather, Neptune Richards, who divided it among his grandchildren. The land, which houses the ruins of the historic sugar mill, the new Windmill Bar, a public campground that opened as a result of the Virgin Islands Jam Fest (an annual music festival held on-site and co-created by Cruz Bay Music and str34m’s Moe Angelo), the island’s only disc golf course, and also Jones’ home, is the former site of a slave-run sugar plantation.
The island of St. John is an extremely unique slice of paradise, as the small island is approximately seven miles long, and three miles wide. Nearly 65 percent of the island is protected by the U.S. National Park system, and therefore cannot be developed. Neptune Richards donated a large portion of his Susannaberg property to the National Park, before dividing the rest among his family. Ronnie Jones enthusiastically emphasized in an article from March in The Virgin Islands Daily News about the new campground, that his grandfather would have been elated to see his property being used to create happiness.
Jones said he believes the use of the property as a campground is in line with what his grandfather Neptune Richards would have envisioned.
“My grandfather would love to know that people could come and enjoy the property he preserved,” said Jones.
“It’s a peaceful, mellow, tranquil environment. The campground is a beautiful addition to the island.”From The Virgin Islands Daily News Article “Camping returns to St. John at Estate Susannaberg”
The Windmill Bar is the latest collaborative effort between Jones and Cruz Bay Music owners Christie Register and Andy Peter. The newly-opened bar may possibly be the smallest in the Virgin Islands, at only 168 square feet. It is built into the mountainside overlooking Caneel bay, and is quickly becoming one of the most popular sunset-viewing locations on the island.
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