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“Long live Sonrisa!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sonrisa

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Sonrisa
2.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Kaya Finlandia z/n, Kralendijk, Bonaire   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 20 Hotels in Kralendijk
Minnetonka, Minnesota
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Long live Sonrisa!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2008

Our family (2 adults and 2 teenagers) stayed at Sonrisa Bonaire the last week of March 2008. We could not have been more pleased. Highlights included Jacqueline's willingness/enthusiasm to help us book whatever we needed-- this included reservations for a night snorkel with Woodwind (wonderful!), a last-day sail/snorkel, and reservations at Capriccio, an Italian restaurant that served up one of the best meals we've had in recent memory . . . anywhere. The property is cute and clean, and everyone in the family was pleased. A big plus-- Jacqueline serves strong, good coffee in the morning! She will give you as much as you want.

We do feel compelled to rebut the only partially negative review at Trip Advisor, which is dated January 7, 2008. Sonrisa has never advertised itself as on the water-- it is a five-minute walk to Divi Flamingo, which is the "first" on-water lodging that one hits when walking on the boardwalk leading to town. Town is maybe 7 to 10 minutes away-- we walked it several times a day, we always walked to dinner, and we sometimes intentionally walked a very long loop home to get some exercise. In other words, there is no problem (or misrepresentation by Sonrisa) about location. As for the pool, our youngest was in the pool about 6 hours on day 1, so it seemed fine to us. No problem with pool size or availability of shade and pool chairs. (If you want a gigantic pool, a la Sandals in the Bahamas, this place isn't for you.) Our two-bedroom apartment was immaculately maintained and plenty big. Finally, we are clueless about the complaint about mud-- maybe that reviewer arrived after a freak thunderstorm? Nary a drop fell from the sky while we were on Bonaire, so we had no mud "problems."

Our family relies heavily on Trip Advisor reviews when booking lodging. We want unique, small places with genuine and interesting guests and proprietors. If that's what you are after, you will love Sonrisa.

p.s. Papaya Moon serves excellent Tex-Mex on the island. Who knew? Have a great time on Bonaire, and don't eat too much!

  • Liked — Cleanliness, assistance in booking activities, and free breakfast.
  • Disliked — Everything was great.
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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67 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    46
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    3
    2
    0
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16
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (9)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
alexandrej28
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2008

Jacqueline (owner) is very friendly and very dedicated to making your trip the best.

Sonrisa is more a pousada than a hotel in my mind, which is a big plus: you get a much more personalized service by an owner who enjoys her job; you feel a lot of taste and care is put in the design and maintenance of the place which is really clean.

The building, garden, patio are very nice. Check their website, their prices are quite lower that the 200$ currently quoted on Trip Advisor. I felt that it was a good value.

We stayed in a poolside hotel room on the ground floor. It was a standard size for a hotel room. We enjoyed the view on the pool which guests used very little. So we could enjoy it fully! Other reviews mention that the area is rather commercial / in development. On the ground floor, you are definitely isolated from the exterior thanks to the design of the place. Morning & evenings are very quiet. I can't say during the day as we were out enjoying the island but it did not seem to be noisy.

Jacqueline should pitch her breakfast a bit better than a "sandwich and a cafe" as it was really good.

It's definitely a great place for families and windsurfers. I will definitely recommend it to my friends.

  • Liked — the care of the owner
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2008

While all the reviews here are accurate, there are a few additional things you should know about Sonrisa. If you want to come to Bonaire and see the ocean, Sonrisa is not for you. The place is new and cute (the owners obviously put a lot of love into it) but the surroundings are not as appealing. The hotel is set back about three blocks from the ocean in a relatively underdeveloped area. When we arrived, it had rained, and we had to walk through an unavoidable strip of deep mud to get to Sonrisa's gate. It's lovely inside, if all you want to do is sit by the pool (which is very small, by the way) and read. We were disappointed to find only six pool chairs though, and little shade. If you dive, you will be better off staying at a place on the water, with a dive shop. The rooms at Sonrisa were very clean (always appreciated) but small. The back rooms (they call them the "windy-side rooms") look out on nothing more than a neighbor's backyard and a satellite dish. Overall, for the money, you may do a lot better at another Bonaire hotel, especially if you are willing to pay a little more. Sonrisa wasn't terrible -- as I said, it's new, clean and cute -- but it definitely wasn't for us.

  • Liked — Clean; good, basic value
  • Disliked — Not on water, on dirt road, small pool with limited seating
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2007

We went to Bonaire to visit friends so, we were not looking for the 'resort experience', just a clean comfortable place to sleep. This hotel provided that and more. It's a very clean and well-maintained place. (I do however agree with the reviewer that said that the rooms are on the small side.) The owners take pride in this new establishment and it shows. The daily breakfast sandwich is very good and we enjoyed eating every morning looking out over the pool and the lovely grounds of the hotel. The owner can arrange almost anything that you might want to do, makes all reservations and provides great suggestions and directions to locations around Bonaire. The location close to the airport is great because the flight to Bonaire can be a little long and wearing, so it’s nice to be able to get settled right away. However, we were never bothered by the noise of planes taking off and landing. A grocery store is close by and the mini-fridge that they provided really came in handy, as did the free Internet access. (Calls from Bonaire are expensive so we kept in touch with emails.) Lots of television channels (Most in English, a few in Spanish, Dutch and German I think.) What more could you want? We recommend staying here; it's a quiet and relaxing spot in beautiful Bonaire.

  • Liked — The clean room and very comfortable beds, she even provided a down pillow when requested!
  • Disliked — The noise from the room above us, if possible ask for a second floor room.
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Curacao
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2007

My husband and I stayed with Jacqueline and Roger at the Sonrisa Apartments for 5 nights in June. Our room was beautiful, the grounds and pool area were gorgeous, and the service was fabulous! The breakfasts were quite tasty as well. It really was like a home away from home for us.

We were new to Bonaire with the idea of moving there permanently, and Jacqueline was tremendously helpful in helping us to navigate our way through finding housing, services etc, as English-only speakers. She booked cars for us, had cell phones available to rent for a very reasonable cost, and also booked tours of the island. She even helped us out with advice on shipping when we decided to move over to Curacao!

You could not ask for a friendlier, more comfortable, yet very elegant place to stay in Bonaire!

  • Liked — Service and friendly staff
  • Disliked — not applicable
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sonrisa

Address: Kaya Finlandia z/n, Kralendijk, Bonaire
Location: Caribbean > Bonaire > Kralendijk
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 20 Hotels in Kralendijk
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Sonrisa 2.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the center of Kralendijk (Capital) with a nice garden and swimmingpool walking distance from restaurants, supermarket and beach. We have eight hotelrooms and two - one, two or three bedroom/bathroom apartments with very comfortable beds. There's also a wetcell where you can rinse and store your dive gear. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sonrisa Hotel Kralendijk
Sonrisa Bonaire/Kralendijk

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