The basics - EVERYONE asks -
*****PLEASE NOTE PRICES, WHERE QUOTED, ARE FOR INDICATION PURPOSES ONLY AND MAY DIFFER SIGNIFICANTLY - ALWAYS VERIFY WITH VENDOR*****
Addresses - yours and others; where do I live?
While members have the benefit of a membership home location map for Stella Maris, you will soon realize the island knows everyone by where they are in relation to everyone else. Accept that your address is your house in relation to someone else's! If you have bought a house for renovation, you will initially be known as "so and so's old house". If you have built a new house - you will be "do you know where 'x' (insert name of closest person) lives? It is the new house next to that"……… Initially you will be confused however, as your newbie status wears off, after a while, you will wonder how on earth everyone doesn't know where 'x' lives and how absurd it is that the real world would need street signs.
Bahamas Electricity Corporation - +1 242 338 8914. Take with you your copy of the deed, photo id and you will be charged a deposit. Like phone, you can simply log on online once set up and pay your bills.
Almost every community in Long Island has the equivalent of a corner store - an "all in one" supply store that will sell everything from milk to screwdrivers. The closest for us here at Stella Maris is MGS - which, when you come out of the resort onto the main highway - Queen's Highway, is simply a right hand turn north and when you see the sign "Burnt Ground", you have about 500 metres to drive. It is on the left hand side with a green and white sign. As with all stores on Long Island, you press the buzzer to be allowed in.
Closest Liquor Store
The Watering Hole is situated within the Stella Maris Resort Area. To get to it, exit back out onto Queen's Highway, turn left towards the south and take the first road to the left that you come to marked with two block entry posts, flags, and, for good measure, a very big sign that says "Watering Hole". Follow this road about 250 metres and, as you turn the corner, you will see the famous Watering Hole liquor store. Many argue this is the best priced alcohol on the island! (Author's Note: Do not expect Dom Perignon - you will rapidly learn that beer, vodka, rum and gin are the flavour of the islands over wine. If you you know your Lafite Rothschild's from your Grange - you will need to learn your alcohol allowance into the Bahamas. Chez Pierre's which is a restaurant enroute to Salt Pond to the south and mid way section of the island does sell wines to the general public but I would call in advance and ask Pierre for availability on 338-8809).
Phone & Internet
Located at Simms and Deadman's Cay - Bahamas Telecommunications Company - (BTC/Batelco). The Simms location, which is our closest, is only open on Wednesday and Friday - however even that should be prefaced with "call first". Most people have 2 phones. One cell phone (generally the cheapest you can get that you buy outright for under $30*) with a prepaid card and your internet and landline package which you can get hooked up within about 72 hours in most cases. The general package they have is internet/landline bundle DSL at $55.50* which includes a landline phone number with 300 minutes as well as unlimited internet at basic speed. Note that there is a significant deposit required for non Bahamian residents of $700* for connection. (Author's note: on the basic level speed test I get about 6-8 mbs download and 1 mbs upload).
NEWBIE LESSON: Once you have your phone number - which will begin with 338 for Stella Maris - you will often find people ONLY give you the last 4 digits of their phone number - everyone knows the first 3!
Drinking Water Delivery - Yuma Springs +1 242-338-5077
For a number of reasons from health and safety through to taste, people drink bottled water or have reverse osmosis installed in house. All the stores will sell you 5 gallon jugs on a "bring an empty and take a full" category, but most people avail of the incredibly fast delivery of multiple 5 gallon jugs of drinking water from Yuma Springs. Store into your phone their number 338 5077. You simply leave your location, name and number of 5 gallon jugs on their voice message. The first time you call, leave a return phone number. You will initially pay $12 for the jug and water itself and then top offs are $4.00 per 5 gallon jug. Easy, simple, exceedingly reliable and you will get your water within 48 hours - normally the next day. (Author's note - I just leave the empties on the front step- you pay cash when they deliver).
Tank Water/General Water
There are a number of ways you will get/have your general use water. Your house will have a holding tank for water - but you may also have access to Stella Maris water and have a meter that you pay by usage just as you would at your "other" home. If you only have a tank then it is simply then a case of how to fill your tank.
Rainwater catchment by gutters into holding tank
Nothing like water provided from the heavens above - if it rains. Even those with large tanks may need a top off however and that brings you to another number to store in your phone -
Water Delivery by the Water & Sewerage Company Long Island +1 242 337 0972
Order WELL in advance. Simply call and again, leave your name and location. This is your link to Reverse Osmosis water of fabulous quality. For $107 per 2,000 gallons, this is the "go to". If it hasn't rained on the island for a couple of weeks however, you can be guaranteed that there is a list of people ahead of you. This also applies to "peak season" from November through April. Don't wait until you run out - put your name on the list at least 10 days before you think you will run out. The last thing anyone wants is to run out of water and then have their pump burn out! The Water & Sewerage Company is one of the few places on the island that takes credit cards but you can also pay the driver in cash or cheque at delivery. (Author's note: I personally pay 2 or 3 loads in advance each time I drive by….. they are incredibly helpful - Melissa must be one of the nicest people on the island and that says a lot on an island where EVERYONE is so helpful).
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