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“Terrible Hotel - Nice Grounds” 2 of 5 stars
Review of The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten

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The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   144 Oyster Pond Road, St Maarten-St Martin   |  
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Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Terrible Hotel - Nice Grounds”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

After having gone to this hotel recently, my husband and I were very DISAPPOINTED.
The CONS of the hotel were as follows:

Price: We have stayed at high end, expensive hotels. This was EXPENSIVE and NOT HIGH END.
Rooms: The OCEAN FRONT view rooms were extremely MUSTY and DAMP, and they had carpet which we didn't even want to step on with bare feet. Cleaning staff we very disorganized, and came into the room multiple times each day.
- Beware of the annoying staff harassing you to take part in a 90 minute presentation for time share.
Location: Very remote. You NEED A CAR. Unless you intend to spend your entire vacation at the resort, or taking a long and expensive taxi ride in to the town whenever you get bored. I would not recommend this location for those who enjoy being close to nightlife and action.
Breakfast: Grossly overpriced, and mediocre.

PROS:
Location: The beach and the pool are very nice. The waves can be quite strong, so I would not recommend this for children (parents at the resort had to stay by the pool with their children). Many chairs are available and included with your stay, unless you want to upgrade to a cabana which of course is not worth it. Towels are also included.
Food: The 2 restaurants at the hotel are quite good overall. But they can get expensive, and there is much better cuisine on the island if you ask around or use a good guidebook ( I would recommend Fodor's, it was amazing). Sunday brunch is very good, there is a huge selection. Come hungry, and be willing to pay at least $50.00 per person.

OVERALL:
The hotel is just too run down and expensive. There is no justification. If you are a traveler who likes luxury and/or enjoys getting value for your money, you are better off elsewhere.

Room Tip: Get them on sale or not at all. OCEAN FRONT ROOMS are SOOO over priced.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 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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1,394 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (311)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hungarian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Minneapolis
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

The Spa is beautiful and as you'd expect the ladies providing services are excellent! They also have a great Casino and outdoor restaurant.

There is no beach to swim at but with their pools and the crashing waves - you don't need one.

It's a bit of a challenge to find but we'll worth it!

Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
marietta
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

The Westin Dawn Beach hotel is a hotel, casino and spa at the far end of St. Martin. It is located on the French side/Dutch side border about 10 minutes from Orient Beach. We stayed here for two days before we were able to move into our time share near Simpson Bay.

The hotel itself is quite lovely. The room was very large, much larger than I expected. The king size bed was comfortable and every room had a balcony or porch. The bathroom was very nice with a shower large enough for two. The bathtub was small but functional.

Internet was free in the room and the cable TV actually worked which was surprising in St. Martin.

The pool was very nice and there was an outside bar. The pool was more for beauty than swimming although there were a few people swimming. The chairs by the pool had cushions on them and were very comfortable. The staff was very attentive.

The chairs on the beach were old and several had rips in them and should be replaced. Also, the beach chairs are the old style rubber ones, not the nice ones with cushions like at the pool.

There are two restaurants on site. We only ate in the more casual one. Ate there for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The food was very good bordering on excellent. The chocolate Mousse was to die for. The staff went out of their way to help us. One waitress even searched out and found my wife a chocolate mouse on her second trip to the spa.

They have two buffets, a Sunday brunch, Sunday breakfast and a Wednesday dinner. We only ate the Sunday breakfast and it was very nice and a good value. The Sunday brunch looked to be too expensive.

My wife used the spa and loved it so much that even after we moved to the other side of the island, she drove 45 minutes back to the hotel to go to the spa again even though there were closer spas to us.

The casino is small. It has your normal casino fair. Unfortunately, the craps table was not open the two days I stayed there.

We asked for and received a late checkout without much problems.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Manalapan, New Jersey
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013 via mobile

I have been traveling Christmas nye for over 30 years this was the best and easiest trip I ever had the front desk staff Raul David john Matt can't do enough to make your trip great the rest people like simon and the rest of staff great beach staff same. The MAJOR problem there is the casino I am some what of a high roller I have won lost big this casino slot machines have to be the worst payouts ever a normal casino has a return of 96-98 pct this one is at the best 90 which is horrible they take the attitude that people stay a few days they are used to Losing so wouldn't shock anyone,I av visited 9 casinos on island no one has a payout like guys great hotel great casino stay out


  • Stayed December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2013

The hotel is in a convenient area of town on the east side just below the French border. This makes it easy to get to the southwest - simpson bay, mahoe bay and the north east side - Orient Bay (Fun beautiful beach with much to do) and over to the northwest - Grand Case (excellent restaurants). So location is good. Rooms are nice updated and clean. The large outdoor pool on the beach is pretty and probably the properties most positively distinguishing feature. The two restaurants on property are good. I guess in general though, it is like staying at a Westin anywhere and you won't feel a lick of the culture of the island. There is a big tacky casino in the lobby and the lobby bar (only bar except for the pool bar) is just sad. You feel like you're in a low class hotel in Las Vegas. We actually cut our stay short here and found a cool place on the French side of the island up in Cul De Sac. So, if you like a big hotel that you know, here you go. If you want cool culture and class, there are many nice properties on the island at reasonable prices.

Room Tip: The property is very large and you have three types of views - beach, inner garden or a view that ov...
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  • Stayed January 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MODSXM, Manager at The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten, responded to this review, January 4, 2013
Dear William R,

Thank you for visiting us at the Westin Dawn Beach Resort and Spa. I am glad that you enjoyed the location of the resort and you were able to enjoy the pool. I am sorry that you felt that our property lacked the ambiance that you were looking for in your Caribbean vacation. While we try to exceed each of our guests expectations there are times when we are not the right fit for everyone. Although, we never like to hear that a guest is not happy at our property, I am happy that you found a resort that fit your needs.

I hope that you will continue to visit the Friendly Island of St. Maarten/St. Martin.
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chatham, NJ
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

We just finished a holiday getaway to the Westin at Dawn Beach in St. Maarten. We spent 3 nights and 4 days there and had a very nice time. Our decision to go to St. Maarten was last minute. We decided on St. Maarten because we wanted a destination where 80 degree weather was likely and there were direct flights out of the New York/New Jersey area. We opted for the Westin at Dawn Beach because it was one of the only hotels that allowed a 3 night stay and had a vacancy. Below is my feedback on the resort.

Positives:
The pool/beach area was very beautiful.

The ocean was very clean and the sand was very soft. We had no problems getting beach chairs and beach towels, even though the hotel was fully booked.

The resort is located in a cove, on the Atlantic side of the island, therefore, the surf was a little rough, but it did not deter us from going in to cool off. Our children are teenagers and there was no problem; however, if you are traveling with young children the ocean may be too rough.

The breakfast buffet was good at the main restaurant. The lunch was good at the pool restaurant. The a la carte dinner was good at the main restaurant; however, the dinner buffet wasn't all that great. We did go to dinner outside of the hotel for 2 of our 3 nights, which I would recommend to add a little variety.

Overall, the staff were extremely friendly and eager to please, especially the front desk employees and the wait staff at the pool restaurant. We called the front desk one evening asking for extra bath towels and they were delivered immediately. The front desk staff called us at the beginning and at the end of our stay to see how we were doing. Staff that we ran into in the hotel hallways went out of their way to greet us and to ensure that our needs were met. One day, it appeared that were were having difficulty getting into our room and one of the hotel engineers offered some unsolicited assistance. We asked for a late checkout (1:30 pm instead of the 12:00 noon policy) and were accommodated with no problem. This friendliness and service was nice to see.

The housekeepers and wait staff in the main restaurant were average, but nothing to complain about. The concierge, Joseph, was really nice and was able to get us a last minute reservation at Canoa in the Oyster Bay Marina one evening; however the restaurants do fill up, especially during the 7 - 8 pm hours, so I would strongly recommend making dinner reservations as much in advance as possible. Otherwise, you will likely have to take a 6 pm or 9 pm reservation. The concierges can only do so much when a restaurant is booked. Overall, I was pleased with the service.

The beds were very comfy.

Cabs were always easily available in front of the hotel to get us places.

Negatives:

The front of the hotel property was rather institutional and "unresort-like", which made for a terrible first impression upon arriving. There was a big casino taking up 2/3 of the lobby space. Not sure what the architect was thinking! It was a dramatic contrast to the beautiful design of the rear of the property.

Our room was a little dismal (lighting was not great), the carpet had a couple of very big stains, there wasn't a whole lot of drawer space or hangers. Our room had a "resort view" on the first floor of the Starwood Preferred guests wing of the property. However, the view was not very appealing. We looked onto an "unlandscaped" piece of grass with a big red fire hydrant. I'm not sure what other rooms looked like but if you are getting a "resort view" instead of the "ocean view", you may want to ask more questions about where the room is located and what it overlooks. The one good thing about our room location is that it was very close to the main restaurant and the pool, which we loved.

The location of the hotel relative to the other places on St. Maarten is relatively secluded. There is an Oyster Bay Marina within a 5 minute cab ride, which is a great spot close by. We went to dinner in this area 2 of our 3 nights. We ate at Canoa and Daniels, which were very good restaurants. A bit pricey but we really enjoyed our meals and were happy with the service. We needed to take a cab to this spot which was $3/person each way. Most other destinations were a longer cab ride away. It was fine for us because we were only there 3 nights, but if a family was staying there longer, the cab fares would definitely add up. Since our stay was short, we opted out of renting a car, but when I did check on the car rental the day after we arrived, they advised me that they had no cars left to rent until next week. I would recommend reserving a car prior to arriving to be sure there is one available.

That sums up our impression of the Westin at Dawn Beach. We would definitely return to St. Maarten and if we stayed at the Westin at Dawn Beach, we would rent a car and upgrade to an Ocean View room.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Split, Croatia
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2012

Experience with this hotel was something horrible... The staff of this 5 star hotel was very rude and not interested in their job expectaly front desk manager and staff on front desk.
When we arrived hotel looked too big for this area not in Caribe style, the beach was empty and ruined by this mega hotel. There where many broken sun beds all over the beach.
This hotel is in the middle of nowhere...
But all this can be much better experince if staff was not so rude!
After this hotel we went to Radisson and it was great experience!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
MODSXM, Manager at The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten, responded to this review, January 4, 2013
Dear FileST,

Thank you for your review on TripAdvisor. I sincerely apologize for the experience that you described. I would welcome the opportunity to discuss the areas you mentioned directly with you. This will help me to locate the areas that we failed and the opportunity to have them rectified.

Any additional feedback that you can offer me would be greatly appreciated.

Daniel Beddor
dorsxm@columbiasussex.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten

Address: 144 Oyster Pond Road, St Maarten-St Martin
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St Maarten-St Martin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Casino Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
#5 Luxury Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
#9 Spa Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
#15 On the Beach Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten 4*
Number of rooms: 311
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on one of the most beautiful Caribbean beaches, The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten offers guests a true getaway. Scuba dive, take a ferry to Anguilla for the day, or just relax. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten Hotel St. Maarten/St. Martin
The Westin Dawn Beach Resort And Spa, St. Maarten
Westin St Maarten Martin
St Maarten Martin Westin
Westin St Martin
Westin St. Maarten/St. Martin
St. Maarten/St. Martin Westin
Westin St Maarten Dawn Beach Resort & Spa
The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten St Maarten-St Martin, Caribbean

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