We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Probably the best spot on ST. MARTIN” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Palace St Martin

Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 1 more site!
Save Saved
You added Hotel Riu Palace St Martin to your Saves list
Hotel Riu Palace St Martin
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   BP 581, Anse Marcel 97056, St Maarten-St Martin (Formerly Radisson Blu Resort, Marina & Spa St. Martin)   |  
Hotel website
  |  
Hotel packages
  |  
Hotel deals
  |  
Hotel amenities
Special Offer
Early Winter Specials
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Anse Marcel
Toronto, Canada
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
“Probably the best spot on ST. MARTIN”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2014

My wife and I are well travelled in the Caribbean and in Europe. To me the island of St. Martin is a very congested island, car, bars and people and junk!

Driving from the airport on the Dutch side to Anse Marcel Bay on the French side disappointed me, until you go down the little mountain into Anse Marcel Bay to the RIU Palace Hotel.

Its beautifully lush and tropical, private, guiet and clean, with a beach that is gorgeous, not to large or crowded with a mirror like calm water in a protected bay.

The staff there are warm and sincerely friendly. In particular one of the main desk staff "Alain" was so helpful to us in organizing day trips signing out, etc.

At the time we were there this hotel was in transition and only offered breakfast as included in the price. Breakfast was excellent and again the staff were very attentive to our needs

My wife and I have stayed in numerous 5 star hotels in the Caribbean and this hotel is definetely NOT A FIVE STAR HOTEL. (4 star is more realistic). It has the potential to be a 5 star hotel and hopefully when it goes all inclusive in November 2014, the RIU chain will have stepped it up to a real 5 star rating.

The reason it is not a real 5 star hotel is simply this: lack of restaraunts on the property (they have 2), lack of swimming pools (they have 1), no swim up bar, lack of nightly entertainment (0), lack of day activities on the resort. 1 boutique to shop at etc. If you do not rent a car at this resort you will not leave it unless you want to spend a small fortune in taxi fares to climb the small mountain you are at the foot of. We rented a car for the week and it was a really good idea. It was $200.00 for the week, we drove the entire island, ate out every night in Grand Case, drove to Marigot, Philipsburg etc.
We did 2 side trips to St. Barths and a second one to Prickly Pear Island snorkelling.

We loved this vaction because of the privacy, perfect beach and calm water with excellent staff that have really good people skills.

To the RIU chain: we have been to your other RIU Resorts (and to the Bia Principe chain)
and you know you have a long way to go to bring this hotel up to your 5 star standards.

Dave and Lidija CRAGHILL
Toronto Canada

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

957 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    509
    308
    92
    27
    21
See reviews for
276
509
19
28
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (168)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Greenville, North Carolina
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2014

**Skip to the last paragraph if you don't want to read a long, in-depth review, lol.

My boyfriend and I just got back a couple days ago from our stay at RIU Place (apparently, formerly a Radisson hotel) and overall it was a great getaway. We had never stayed there before, so I can't comment on how it compares under new management.

We rented a car at SXM Airport after doing research online and seeing that people recommended to do that, especially because of this hotel's location, and I will agree. According to other reviews, Taxi prices are outrageous and for 6 days renting the car, it was only about $120 USD. It was easy to follow a map and road signs to RIU. The hotel is nestled away from the rest of the island in a cove on the other side of large hills, which gives the feeling of safety and seclusion.

Upon arrival at RIU, we were not greeted by anyone. We went inside to check-in, everyone was pleasant, but directed us to where we could park and did not offer to take our luggage up for us. Not sure if this was because it was off-season but it definitely worried me, and I wondered if we had made the wrong decision by choosing this hotel. We settled into our 3rd floor garden view room (1306# and we were very happy with the location and view #there are no beach front rooms#. The room was spacious but ordinary, but the bathroom looked as though it was recently remodeled and was very nice. The bed was a SleepNumber bed, we didn't love it as no matter what the setting it seemed hard, but it sufficed. The room was comfortable and inviting, had a huge balcony, and suited our needs. Wifi was free and reached out to the pool and beach, which was very nice.

The pool and beach are just lovely. The pool is huge and even though there were a fair amount of kids there, there was more than enough room for everyone to enjoy themselves. The beach is located in a little cove and therefore there were very little waves. It was beautiful, and a very refreshing temperature. We loved spending our days out there. It was easy to find a lounge chair no matter what time of day. There was also drink service on the beach.

The real gem of the hotel was their food and entertainment. Every morning 7-10:30 was an AMAZING buffet breakfast with everything you could possibly want. As others mentioned, the French Press coffee was a nice touch. Everything was just fantastic. They also have theme nights, we went to their Sunday night dinner with live music and it was absolutely exquisite. We skipped their International dinner night because we had already eaten, but the menu looked very good. Then the day we left they were having Creole food night, which I so desperately wanted to try! I wish we could've stayed another night! They also had dancing at the beach bar with live music on Wednesday evenings, it was the perfect last night for us... so much fun. My ONLY complaint, and it is very minor, is they only offer one light thing to eat during the day on the menu, and it's a cheese platter. I wish they had more options of light appetizers for when you're nibbly while swimming but don't want to eat a meal.

Although the location is secluded, there are two other smaller hotels nearby and a few restaurants. We tried the Calypso and the Italian restaurant across the street from RIU and both were great.

One thing that I enjoyed was there were not many Americans at the hotel, we only met a few during our stay. Everyone else was from Europe, mostly France. I wanted to stay on the French side of the island because I love French culture. From the baguettes in the morning to the French language being heard around us, we loved it. All employees spoke both French and English.

If you'd like a low-key, restful vacation, this hotel fits the bill. It may not be as posh as some other hotels, but it makes up for it in plenty of other ways. You don't even have to leave the grounds! We only left for one day to see Marigot and go ziplining in Loterie Farms. The gym was nice and had lots of high-end equipment to choose from. The TV had plenty of channels. The staff was lovely. Beach was gorgeous. Food was exceptional. As long as you don't expect the Ritz (which I kind of did at first), you won't be disappointed.

Room Tip: The garden view is a great location, close to everything on the grounds. When we were there, there w...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2014

First Caribbean vacation I can say my family and I will return twice. We have stayed at beautiful resorts all overt Mexico and the islands and St Martin and the Riu Palace is now the top of our list.

Hotel was just changed to Riu in June 2014. No actual changes have been made yet. There is construction going on but it's barely noticeable.


Breakfast is included and always delish. Many many options.

Dinner in the hotel is decent. The regular menu is better than the "buffet" nights they do.

There are two small outdoor restaurants near the lobby entrance. Walkable and very good food. Decent prices.

Highly recommend to rent a car. From the airport seemed cheaper than from the hotel. It's best to drive yourself around for activities and for other areas to explore and restaurants to eat at.

The rooms are great. Fairly new. Sleep number beds. Showers are only half enclosed half open so the water will flood the floor. The outlets are French so don't bother bringing an American straightener or curling iron. They do provide an outlet converter for your cell phone and camera chargers. There are no beach view rooms. Only garden view. The property is very well kept and beautiful. Anse Marcel is by far the best location on the island. The beach is good - great sand, calm water, gorgeous mountains to the left, right and behind you.

I would highly recommend choosing the Riu for your stay in St Martin. My pictures will say a lot!

Stayed August 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bellevue, Washington
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2014

My wife and I stayed in the Riu Palace St. Martin from 8 July 2014 until 18 July. I had a deposit of 349.44 Euros taken out of my bank account by the hotel's then-owner Radisson when I made the reservation in May. Since the hotel was taken over by Riu shortly after, I had concerns about this deposit possibly being lost. I was contacted by Ingrid Mathurin, reservation manager of the Riu Palace St. Martin a few days before we arrived. She assured me that my deposit was not lost and would be applied against against any additional charges during my stay. (I had already prepaid $1980.00 to Riu for the room cost of our 10-day stay.) This is not what happened. We incurred 585.16 Euros in additional charges while we were there; Riu took the entire amount out of my bank account without applying the 349.44 Euro credit I had with them. Since they didn't use this credit, they owe me a refund in this amount. I have contacted Ms. Mathurin twice via email and have had no response from her or anyone else at the Riu Palace St. Martin. I sent a message through Riu's website but have not heard from them either. If there is no response by next week, I'm handing the matter to my attorney.

Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brussels, Belgium
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2014

First of all, you must know that the first 900 reviews for this hotel refer to the Radisson Blue Anse Marcel and not the RIU Palace St Martin.
The Radisson Blue was purchased by RIU June 1, 2014.
It is anomalous that Tripadvisor suggests that 800 positive ratings are for the RIU Palace.
I sent them an email about it ... but no response ...

I went two times in the Radisson Blue Anse Marcel and my opinion was positive, not perfect but clearly positive.

We made ​​a reservation for the Radisson before June and no one warned us of the change of ownership or the quality of services.

Between RIU and Radisson, it remains only the paradise hotel park vegetation and the Anse Marcel.
The staff is generally very friendly (however you have to accept the islands style) except the two new directors who are incompetent, rude and unsympathetic and do not care about customers.
We see and hear from the staff is tired of the decline of quality and means as well as the incompetent direction.
We spoke with several families and couples of regulars and they will not put again the feet at this hotel

It should already avoid this place until November or later: we were treated to three weeks of jackhammer (20m of the pool) with the work continued until sometimes 8:45 p.m. (20m of the restaurant) including Sundays.

I'll start with the two new Directors ... totally unacceptable (that is thanks to them that my assessment goes to poor)
There is one who refuses to see its clients ... when he is forced to come down from his office, he then rough with his staff and said they have to solve the problems by themselves and he does not want to be disturbed ... And when spoken it is clear that what he thinks is "But f..k you dear customer you can talk, I do not care what you say ..."

The second is a "nice little Director" who clearly has no the skills... he's afraid of customers and has no "commercial"manners: at lunch, he cuts client priority in front of the plate stack and says nothing...not even a hello (which may seem a detail but it shows the standard of the hotel Riu PALACE).

The pool was completely degraded: hole in the bottom, faience removed over large areas.
A animal poop remained on the way to the pool several days before disappearing while Directors took this way several times a day

The room is quiet and comfortable, clean with a good mattress. There aren't any more minibar, Nespresso machine will certainly disappear when the stock of capsule will be spent. Color retouch on the wall is made with a slightly different color (Riu PALACE) ...

regarding until November (after it's all inclusive):
Lunch has improved, fresh fruit cut in the breakfast room, French loaf better cooked, dishes offered a little warmer.
But, contrariwise, there has less attention with the cleaning: At the breakfast, I had twice dirty plates (a huge chewing-gum stuck under the plate and another day a big fat crust under the base) and once, the table was set with a napkin stained by coffee.

For buffets: good quality products but often annealed and dry because of the buffet.

For speaking with staff, it is clearly expected a decrease in the quality of products, wines and spirits proposed when the hotel will go to "all inclusive" in November

The quality of the spa is always excellent ... very friendly and knowledgeable.

To conclude: this is no longer the Radisson (which was already not a Great Radisson) and this RIU has nothing of a Palace ...
Managers should go to the dictionary to learn about Palace definition ...

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2014

The Riu was formerly a Radisson and they are transitioning to an all inclusive resort. During our stay only breakfast was included.

The rooms are large with very large bathrooms and showers. All rooms have air conditioning. Rooms on the ground floor have sliding doors that open on to the property. The rooms were clean and had minimal decoration. There was also a coffee maker, mini-bar, and safe in our room.

The bathroom was very large and open with sliding pockets doors. The design was a bit limiting as the entire bathroom had to be shut off to use the toilet. If there was a separate door on the toilet it would have been much more functional. Also the shower was very open. There was a glass door that covered about half of the shower space and we got water all over the bathroom floor every time we showered no matter how much we tried to not get water all over.

The pool area was very nice and one day there was live Caribbean music by the pool and another day there was music piped in from the speakers. The pool had a deeper side with an infinity edge and a more shallow side that had a beach kind of walk in area. The pool temperature was warm and felt great every time you walked in the water. There was a towel hut that provided towels for the pool area. There was one bar by the pool area. The bartenders were friendly. Prices at the bar were high, 5 EUR for a beer and 8 EUR for a cocktail. We did eat lunch at the pool bar one day. We had a delicious Croque Madame, it was really a great sandwich but also pricey at 15 EUR. The pool also had a large hot tub which usually wasn't very crowded.

The beach at the Riu wasn't great and one of the reasons I wouldn't stay there again. It was small and didn't have the beautiful turquoise water that other beaches in St. Martin have. There were really no waves at their beach either, it just wasn't what I wanted in a tropical beach.

There was one restaurant on property. We never ate there. The menu looked good, but again the prices were high.

Breakfast was delicious. The French pastries were amazing and the fresh croissants something I looked forward too every morning. There were interesting hot dishes including rice and beans, bacon, sausage, and local items. There was a fresh omelette station. I had the omelette chef cook me fresh scrambled eggs or fried eggs instead of a full omelette and they were always accommodating. Breakfast also included an array of cereal, granola, fresh fruit, fresh fruit juices, cheese, sliced meat, and hard boiled eggs. It was a great way to start the day.

The resort is isolated and we rented a car on property to explore other parts of the island. (For a fee of 25 EUR we returned the car at the airport and saved the expensive cab fare.) The road getting in and out of the Riu resort area is a steep, winding, two lane road and it always seemed to be raining on that hill. It was easy to navigate around St. Martin, we didn't see a single traffic light on the island, just traffic circles. Traffic gets really backed up in the big cities, so plan extra time if you are going thru Marigot or in to see the airplanes land. Parking rules seemed pretty loose, we just parked where we found a space and that seemed to work OK but we were always a little nervous about getting a ticket. We ate in Grand Case most of the time. There are many wonderful restaurants and lolas (barbeques).

The landscaping at the Riu was lush and tropical and the reception area was well decorated with lovely outdoor seating areas. While I did enjoy my stay, the next time I visit St. Martin I would rather stay somewhere with access to a better beach (maybe Orient Bay) and a place that is a little less isolated. I would prefer more places to eat and not the feeling that you had to drive each night for dinner.

And for those that want night life, there is none at this hotel. We were fine with the quiet but after dinner we wanted a nightcap and this hotel just didn't really accommodate what we were looking for. The pool bar closed at 7pm and while the lobby bar was open it was just void of any other customers or music.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooklyn
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2014

It took forever to get to the hotel. We rented a car at the airport and that took a long while. This got us into rush hour: we were stuck in traffic for a few hours. The hotel is a good drive from the ap, the road to the hotel is quite steep, and you need to be a savvy driver to negotiate it in the dark. Let's just say that it was an ordeal to her there. We arrived after 8:00pm. The reception was not ready to check us in, we had to wait for about an hour for someone to do the check in. We were tired and our then 2 year old really needed to get to bed. Strangely
we were made to feel that we are somehow inconsiderate having to wait so long. That was quite odd. The room that we were given had stairs and it was not convenient with a toddler. We were offered an upgrade but had to wait for room service to clean the room, that took another hour or so. By 10:00pm we checked into the suite. It was very spacious, clean, the balcony overlooked the pretty marine. The next day, we could see how beautiful the resort is. Truly amazing views. Well maintained and carefully manicured. The infinity pool is amazing and there were plenty of seatings. The staff was very accommodating. The breakfast had good variety and served in a pretty gazebo like overlooking the landscaping. Service there was slow and inconsistent and there was a long line for some of the stations. There is not much to eat in the resort besides a poolside eatery that's rather minimal, and they close early. You will need a car to tour the area and enjoy local restaurants (plenty options with great views). Otherwise the island is not much to write home about, but the resort is very beautiful and truly relaxing. We may go again.

  • Stayed April 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Hotel Riu Palace St Martin? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace St Martin

Address: BP 581, Anse Marcel 97056, St Maarten-St Martin (Formerly Radisson Blu Resort, Marina & Spa St. Martin)
Location: Caribbean > St Maarten-St Martin > Saint-Martin > Anse Marcel
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Anse Marcel
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace St Martin 4*
Number of rooms: 252
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
New opening. The Hotel Riu Palace St. Martin, situated at the beachfront on the Caribbean island of St. Martin, is the perfect place for a dream vacation and it's ready for you to enjoy all the amenities and services RIU offers to its guests. Located in the beautiful cove of Anse Marcel brings the opportunity to enjoy a natural reserve with its unique flora and fauna and also sandy white beaches with dream-like turquoise waters, ideal for relaxing and practicing water sports. Rooms , restaurants , bars, pools and spa are at your complete disposal as part of the exclusive hotel facilities. The hotel restaurants will delight you with a wide variety of flavors from the rich and colorful Caribbean cuisine to the international dishes prepared daily by chefs. A perfect destination for travelers who want a few days of relax, beach and sun, offering tranquility and fun alike. You'll find the most diverse activities and sports that enliven your stay, and at night you can enjoy the best entertainment. Undoubtedly the small island of St Martin, in its 88 Km2, offers the perfect holiday destination: beautiful beaches, warm weather, and local friendliness. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Venere and Tingo so you can book your Hotel Riu Palace St Martin reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Radisson Blu Resort, Marina And Spa St. Martin
Radisson Blu Resort, Marina & Spa St. Martin Hotel Anse Marcel
Radisson Anse Marcel
Anse Marcel Radisson
Hotel Riu Palace St Martin St Maarten-St Martin/Anse Marcel

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Hotel Riu Palace St Martin, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.