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“Great location and good value but gambling your money paying for an upgrade.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Casino

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Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Casino
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   1 Rhine Road, Maho Beach, St Maarten-St Martin   |  
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Free nights+$200 credit
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Great location and good value but gambling your money paying for an upgrade.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2013 via mobile

My wife and I were accompanied by my niece and her boyfriend at Sonesta Maho beach for my Birthday and their spring break. We had a good time there, we both payed for a ocean view upgrade unfortunately we didn't both get an upgrade. My niece got a beautiful room in the renovated section on the 5th floor while my wife and I got room 392 in the old section. The room initially didn't have running water but after a call it was fixed soon but the shower tub drain was plugged. The room was clean and had a comfortable bed but the room must have been freshly painted the day before because the fumes were almost unbearable but we soon became used to them and it dried. This wasn't an ocean view, we read reviews online and purposely upgraded so we wouldn't get stuck in the old section. I visited the front desk numerous times daily to ask why we didn't get the upgrade we payed for and they said I would have to talk to some manager that was always gone or in a meeting. Finally we decided to accept the fact we got screwed and moved on with our vacation instead of spending anymore time at the front desk and showered daily in a flooded shower tub.

The restaurants have good food and the staff is friendly especially the waiter Gibson, he was so friendly and polite we returned to the same table a few nights later because we enjoyed his company and service. We also enjoyed the pub Ascot overlooking the casino, the wait staff was fun there as well.
The pool was not over crowded when we were there, Bartender Cheryl was fun and efficient, not a long wait for a drink when you have a great bartender. Breakfast is ok but no made to order omelets, try to get the cook to make one is like pulling teeth so I filled up on runny eggs and toast.

Casino in the resort was good to my niece, she was excited to win around $400. Also, Karaoke in the bar kept her entertained singing most nights.

Excursions we booked were: St Bart's Mini Cooper tour; it was awesome cruising around the French island and shopping. Its the only way to see the full island, a few hidden costs but it was worth it.
Also, Lambada Anguilla two island day trip; was fun helping hoist the main sail, only visited one island for a nice lunch at a beach bar, snorkeling was fun shallow with warm water but not much to see when compared to Cozumel or Hawaii but who cares when your having a good time. Sailing back was so peaceful one of the bartenders fell asleep behind the bar on the floor so we livened him up and got him dancing.
The Golf course is in really bad shape, everything is burned up. They watered the greens with a 3000 gal tanker while we played only to cause more damage to them, they flooded and washed away any grass that was clinging to life, we kept playing and laughing reminding each other of the 5' of snow on the ground at home so the $105 a piece with clubs and cart was pretty much worth it.

The planes take off and land all day especially in the afternoon, its hard not to watch, pretty much stop what your doing or talking about to catch a peek. It is fascinating to see up close, visit the Sunset bar and Grill for drink and a burger, and flight times. I stood behind the KLM 747 when it took off, it was awesome. Some people complain of the noise but we didn't mind, Its quiet at night.
Local cigar shop will let you call home for free if you buy something.

Sopranos piano bar is great but don't mention Ted Nugent to the piano player, his reaction was about a 9 on the tension scale. Sandra the bartender was amazing, she worked in Aruba when we were there and couldn't believe she was working in St Maarten Sopranos, she's a sweetheart.

If your looking for an all inclusive in a good location, casino, good food, overall friendly staff, within walking distance of local shops, this is the place. Hope this helps.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (730)
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Torun, Poland
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2013

We spent at Sonest Maho 10 great days
Hotel itself has great location - close to the airport and famous Maho beach with great view for landing and departing aircrafts, 10mins walk to Mullet Bay with nice, calm, long and sandy beach. We took All Inclusive option which was great for us - we had all we needed. Food was excellent, choice was pretty wide. Also 'The Point' restaurant with a'la carte menu was really OK.
We had a room at 9th floor with pool/ocean view - which I actually recommend.
Every day room service, fridge refillment with soft drinks - no complaints about :-)
Big thanks to nice people working there - especially Bianca, Eliska, Milton :-)

Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2013

It was with much apprehension that we stayed at this hotel. After reading the reviews, we truly thought we had made the wrong decision. We are happy to report we had no issues with either the hotel or the staff. In fact, quite the opposite was true. Our room was always clean with the fridge stocked daily. The staff was warm and friendly and we had no issues with service. I would not give this hotel a 4 star rating only because of the following two reasons: first, lack of beach. If the beach is a priority for you, this may not be the place. However, that being said, Mullet Beach, a beautiful and famous beach, is within walking distance. If you are really seeking a rush, head to Maho Beach, also within walking distance. Watch the jets come in and out. Totally awesome experience! The second reason would be the food. Although we always found something desirable to eat, if you are hoping for gourmet food you will not find it here. Our favourite was "The Palms," with a very good menu and our special waitress Wendy who always greeted us with a smile. The best rooms are in the Skytower. Upgrade to premier oceanview.

Room Tip: The best rooms are in the skytower. Upgrade to premier oceanview....7th floor or higher...money well...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barrie, Ontario, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2013

Overall experience best ever !
Server " Sharon, the banana singer " proved many times, people make your week, a experience that others should try.
Even Front Desk Manager, Colin King did his part to promote the Island and the best vacation yet.
We brought St Patricks' Day green necklaces to present to staff, who now know what this day means to be Irish for that one day, a year.
Again try it, you will never forget it and tell all your friends and co-workers.
Don and Carol B. from Barrie

Room Tip: Ocean view side and make sure you can see the airplane blast landing along the beach also
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Haven, Connecticut
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2013

My girlfriend and I stayed at this property for four nights in March 2013. The saving grace was the fact that we were in St. Maarten but if you are looking for luxury, this is not your place.

Now, at this point I've only been to one other "All-Inclusive Resort" but from what I understand it is almost customary to be greeted by staff with a warm welcoming smile and to be offered a drink after long travel. Not here. We walked up to the desk and although the front desk attendant was nice, it took a while to get situated. We were told our room would overlook the pool and would be ready soon. They sent us to a vacant room to change our clothes so we could enjoy the amenities as we waited for our room to be ready. The room they sent us too, although only to change our clothes in, was slightly dirty and overlooked construction. This was one of our first impressions of the hotel. Immediately, you begin to wonder whether or not this is an all-inclusive resort or an all-inclusive hotel. When our room was ready, we went upstairs to find our view not overlooking the pool but roof, the dated hotel sign, the street and the nightclub outside. However, they did post a happy birthday banner on the wall with balloons over the bed since I had informed them it was soon to be my girlfriend's birthday. The room was loud at night, you could hear people going in and out of the local club until early in the morning. As far as the beer/liquor in the fridge, the hotel provides you with two beers in your fridge along with bottled water and sodas. You can request more but slightly disappointing. As for Wi-Fi, in this day and age the "Resort" has the nerve to try and charge you $16.00+ for 24-hours of Wi-Fi, however, if you talk to the right front desk agent he will hook you up with the password to an upstairs bar's Wi-Fi for $10, and if you don't pay, he will remind you to pay him (not the resort) - in cash.
The beaches in St. Maarten can't be beaten. The location of the hotel is on one side of the island and you can walk to Mullet Bay which is a beautiful beach. You can also walk to Cupecoy Bay as well. We didn't go to the beach to watch the planes depart and arrive. Some people really love being near the planes and getting blasted off shore by watching the take-off, I am not too sure what the draw is with that. You can hear planes landing often at the airport next door.
On one of our days we took a bus to downtown Philipsburg which is recommended and on another day a taxi to Orient Beach which was a fun experience.
As for the food, I thought it was pretty good. We had lunch outside at the grille overlooking the water, the chicken wings and Caesar salad are good. There is an "Upscale" restaurant - The Pointe - which at first, for dinner one night turned me away while I was wearing khakis, flip-flops and a collared shirt - apparently the dude dining there wearing the "Tap-Out" tee-shirt was appropriate for this joint. I put on shoes and went back down. Food was good - Grouper recommended. The buffet was pretty good too, this place has a chill band playing outside at night to listen to while you eat, but if you expect to do anything at this hotel past midnight, go elsewhere. Mexican night was good and definitely check out the sports bar for some mahi mahi.
Customer service at this place needs to be improved to give it a resort feel. They like to ignore you. I didn't request management but I get the sense that if you did, they would be no where to be found. Also note that you can use your all-inclusive status and hang out at the other Sonesta (which we did one afternoon) which has a better beach area, as I noticed there isn't a real beach area at this place - especially if there is a high tide.
Regardless of this less than average review we had a good time, mostly because of who I was with, not where I was staying. I mean, it is St. Maarten, how could you not have fun?!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Texas
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2013

I was scared after reading some of these reviews, but we just got back from a 4 night stay at Sonesta Maho and had a great time. Yes, its not a 5 star resort. Yes, its not in the greatest shape, and the food is mediocre. I guess it all depends on what you expect for your money. I ended up getting a good rate, and for that rate I thought it was a good value. Had I paid full price, I would have definitely been disappointed. The location is great. There are shops, bars, a casino just outside the resort. And watching the planes land and takeoff from the resort is awesome. Now, to address some negative things I have seen in reviews. First, the service. Its simple, all you need to do is tip a little bit and you will get great service. I saw the majority of people not tipping. I tipped a couple bucks here and there, and everyone was really nice. Once I tipped the bartender, he started getting us drinks before we even asked. I tipped the maid service, and my fridge was always stocked. Second, the beach(or lack there of). Its true you can't walk directly to the beach from the resort, but Maho Beach (famous for the planes) is a short walk, and Mullet Bay Beach is just a few minutes from the resort. Once negative I do have is that I did notice a sewage or water treatment smell a couple times at one end of the pool. I'm not sure what was going on there, but we just moved to a different area. All in all, I was satisfied for the price I paid.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2013

I stayed at the hotel for work and had I had a better option, would have stayed elsewhere. The location was very convenient for my business, though. It seems the key to liking your room is to stay in an updated room, which I did (and paid an extra $50/night to do so). I also learned you can book an updated room; the person who booked my travel didn't know to do that and after some hesitation, the front desk clerk "found" a room for me. The room was fine; not fancy but fine. Only had lunch on the terrace one day and it was fine, not good. However, I had a connecting room, and not only could I hear that my next door neighbor was on a phone call, I could hear every word he said. I also heard when he yawned loudly and told his wife that all the snacks were stale. The walls are paper thin and that's really annoying. I would not choose this hotel for a vacation and hope I can find a better alternative if I go back for work.

Room Tip: Pay for an updated room at booking.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Casino

Address: 1 Rhine Road, Maho Beach, St Maarten-St Martin
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St Maarten-St Martin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Casino Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
#11 Spa Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
#11 Top resorts Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
#23 On the Beach Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Casino 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
St. Maarten's only all-inclusive resort for families, singles and couples, the 520-room beachfront Sonesta Maho is located on 10 acres with expansive tropical gardens, stunning ocean vistas, 5 restaurants, 5 bars, the island's largest Casino, Kids Club, 2 swimming pools, day and night entertainment and much more. Duty-free shopping and nightlife is all within walking distance in the Maho Village. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sonesta Maho Beach Hotel
St Martin Sonesta
Sonesta St. Maarten/St. Martin
St Maarten Sonesta
Maho Beach Hotel
St. Maarten/St. Martin Sonesta
Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Casino St Maarten-St Martin, Caribbean

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