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“Nice, clean 4-star, away from hussle and bustle” 5 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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Long Island, NY
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Nice, clean 4-star, away from hussle and bustle”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

If you have read any of my other reviews, you may find that we (a young-ish couple) are not the type that spend our entire vacation locked into the resort. We use the beds as sleeping and fun (wink wink) and expect clean rooms/linens/grounds, good service, and a comfortable atmosphere (including pool/beach and surrounding areas). that being said....
We stayed at this hotel for 7 days/6 nights in the middle of February. Our first encounter was with the friendly doorman and associates at the reservation desk. I will mention at the onset that nearly all the islanders are VERY FRIENDLY, as long as you say hello or smile at them. The front desk associate actually upgraded our room to an "ocean view" which meant that the room face the pool, but from the balcony you can easily see the beach. Our room had two double beds; we had booked an ocean-view king room, but CheapCaribbean.com does not guarantee the room you book, which was our mistake. I should have called the hotel to request that type of room. HOWEVER, the friendly front desk associate was extremely accommodating and did her best to help us out. 2 days later a king room became available and we were notified, but we found our room to be comfortable and we stayed put.
The room was clean and inviting, the bathroom generous with both an enormous shower and a tub (not a jacuzzi). Beds were comfortable.
There is a casino in the lobby, but did not make use of it. Not sure why others make a big deal of the lobby and it's ambiance. Who cares? Nevertheless, we found it to be nice, and not loud even though there's a casino right there.
The pool area is impeccably clean. Save for a random plastic cup that a guest left behind to be carried by the wind, I found the entire pool area to be very nice. Same goes for the beach. Do note that this is called "Dawn Beach" because (I assume) it's the best place on the island to watch a sunrise. That being said, you will have to face your beach chair away from the beach (toward hotel) after noon if you want to continue tanning. The current can be strong here also. You will not get to see the sunset here. But the pool bar and deli are convenient, if not expensive (all food is pricey on the island).
We found both restaurants to be very good. We enjoyed breakfast, lunch and dinner at Ocean, and at all of these meals we found at least one item that made us go "YUMMMM", more than the rest of the "yums" elicited. We actually had our anniversary dinner at Aura and enjoyed it immensely. I forget the name, but there is a tuna tartare appetizer that is to die for. Does Aura ship to NY???
I would be remiss if I didn't mention the SUPERIOR service that we got from both Nicholos and Alberto. Nicholos is a really cool guy that had great tips on island happenings. Alberto is one of the hardest working men at that resort. His passion for service is uber-evident, and management, if you're reading this, these two gentlemen deserve a juicy raise!
The location of the resort is remote. We preferred this. It's away from the hub-bub of Simpson and Mullet Bays, where the nicest neighborhoods are. It is advisable to rent a Jeep. Not a new one. Get a Jeep Wrangler and enjoy exploring the island via the one road that loops all the way around. It is a hilly island, and the roads are curvy and feature numerous potholes. The fact that it's hilly is part of the beauty, as you can enjoy stunning views from multiple areas. I read someone complain about that. If you want flat, go to Anguilla.
In the Dawn Beach/Oyster area, visit Busby's Beach Bar for breakfast/lunch, and that same place becomes Daniel's by the Sea for dinner. We had all three meals here, and each one was delicious.
We went to the spa too. I would say this is the one area of the hotel that could use an upgrade. They should consider a material other than tile in their steam room; grey grout tends to look moldy, even if it isn't. It WAS clean, just my opinion. The decorative feature in the center of the relaxation area used to be a fountain, and needs an update too. A little nit to pick. However, the masseurs were some of the best we've had. My hubby said it was his best massage ever!
In sum, the Westin is a very nice 4-star (it is not a 5-star, don't expect a 5-star, people!!!). They will try to get you to take a time share tour, but be smart: there's no such thing as a free lunch. If they're going to give you a free catamaran tour or something, expect to sit through an hours-long timeshare presentation. Instead, book your own tour, and be firm but polite to the timeshare sales associate. She's only doing her job!

Room Tip: Second floor rooms have better views overall.
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  • Stayed February 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,346 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 (299)
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English first
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
39 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

We switched to the Westin after some issues arose at another property in St. Martin. The lobby is very dark and upon initial arrival, we thought we had made a big mistake. (Three quarters of the lobby was a casino that seemed to have no one gambling.) However, once we got to our room and looked out at the pool and the beach, we were very happy. The room was standard Westin -- large with a large bath room that included a tub and a walk-in shower and a small balcony. As noted we had a view of the large two-level pool and the beach. Service at the pool was prompt and the drinks were quite good. Food at the pool and at the hotel restaurant at which we ate was also good.

Room Tip: Make sure you've got a room that looks out at the sea. As noted, the lobby is dark and you don...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, GA
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

We had a good stay, just one night before our cruise on the Windsurf. I really don't like it when folks talk about how expensive a place is, because, you obviously know the price before you stay there, but this hotel was expensive for what it is. Our view was good. The bed was comfortable.
The restaurant was fine. I would not have wanted to stay for a week's vacation, but one night was fine. We were aggressively approached by the timeshare folks in the back of the lobby, but we had read many of the reviews and were prepared for it.

  • 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
    • 3 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.
Hull, Massachusetts
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2013

We spent 6 days at the Westin Dawn and had a great time. The service was outstanding. David the MOD, Rahul, the room manager, and Shonar, the front desk receptionist were exceptional and couldn't do enough for us. Fran the concierge, gave us wonderful recommendations for restaurants.

We were not happy about the location of our rooms and when they could, they changed them to ones facing the beautiful beach. We were so delighted with the changes. Although, we spent most of our time at different beaches and areas around the island, we loved just sitting on our balconies and looking at the clear blue water.

The pool area and beach were clean and scenic. The only thing lacking were umbrellas on the beach and the pool. The Westin is on Oyster Bay and away from the active Simpson Bay. If you stay here and rent a car go to Marigot, La Grande Casse, Simpson Bay and Orient Beach.

We traveled with our friends and we would all recommend staying at the Westin Dawn Beach Resort.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
New York City, New York
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2013 via mobile

Westin is a very nice property right on the beach. Our room was quite large with a balcony and ocean view. The bathroom was very big with large walk in shower and separate bath tub. Evwrything is clean but a bit bland. They could use some additional decor or seating in the room.
The breakfast buffet is good! The omlette chef is so sweet and makes great omlettes:-) Staff has been very accommodating and very friendly.
The beach on property is ok. There are free beach chairs but they are the hard plastic ones without cushions. Umbrellas are not available. Its not a wide expanse of beach but the hotel during high season didn't have a very crowded beach. It is a bit choppy and strong waves but i went in anyway and so did many others. Its definitely a bit rocky but not impossible. We drove to orient beach and noticed it was less rocky and waves were calmer.
Overall the hotel was very nice and one of the few international brands available on the island.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lincoln, Nebraska
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2013

This was the first visit to St. Maarten for my husband and I and we are very thankful we choose the Westin. For us it was in a great location - quiet so we could relax but close to both the French and Dutch towns. Dawn Beach is one of the nicer beaches on the island and also quiet. Our 2nd floor room overlooked the ocean and almost right on the beach - what a view. We usually stay at Westin hotels, primarily for the clean rooms, heavenly beds and helpful staff. Most of the hotels on the island are in touristy parts of the island or not very nice beaches as compared to the Westin. By far the staff at Westin Dawn Beach EXCEEDED any other Westin we have stayed at. Always hello with a smile and 'how can we help you' attitude. For the most part the Westin was very clean but the salty, moist air takes it toll on metal and some moldy spots in the shower. We did rent a car and the island is easy to navigate but not in very good shape. We kayaked to Pinel Island or you can take a 5 minute ferry. We went to snorkel at Pinel Island but not very good. In fact we were told by our concierge, snorkeling is not the best on the island. However one of the most spectacular views from Pinel Island overlooking St. Maarten. The best location for food is Grand Case and very reasonable prices before dinner starts. We only ate twice at Dawn Beach, the beach cafe and room service, and the food was fine and the usual prices you find at a resort. There are a few restaurants close by to Dawn Beach in Oyster Bay and a convenince store that serve fresh, French croissants. You need to arrive by 8 a.m. or they run out or just place an order for the next day. Phillipsburg is only 10 minutes away by car or taxi and great shopping (way better than many Carribean Islands) but the gift shop at the Westin is very good too. Anyone who travels to St. Maarten needs to experience the airplanes landing and taking off at Sunset Beach - what an experience when a 747 lands! Close by is Mullet Bay which also has a superb beach with a small bar/restaurant. Overall, for my husband and I, the staff and quiet, gorgeous location of this Westin make it a 5 star for us.

Room Tip: If you can, rent a room oceanside.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2013 via mobile

We had a wonderful stay at this hotel. The property was very pretty, the room and bathroom were very nice, spacious and clean. The staff could not be be more friendly or accommodating, everyone you encounter greets you. The staff in the restaurants are very attentive. Fran the concierge was extremely helpful to us and Max in the Restaurants was also wonderful. We had dinner in both the Ocean and the Aura and had great meals in both restaurants. The pool area and beach are very nice and they have bar service at both. The hotel is not in the middle of a town but it is in a nice quiet location. You will need to take a taxi or rent a car but the taxis are not expensive. We has some great taxi rides, many of the drivers are more like tour guides, we had a great day with Carlton "Uncle Pretty" he is a great ambassador for the island of St Maarten. It seems that no matter where you stay on the island you have to travel some distance to get from town to town.

Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member 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 ( Wi-Fi ) 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
#8 Spa Hotel in St Maarten-St Martin
#14 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 And Spa, St. Maarten
The Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, St. Maarten Hotel St. Maarten/St. Martin
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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