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“Had the time of our lives!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Horny Toad Guesthouse

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The Horny Toad Guesthouse
3.0 of 5 Guest house   |   2 Vlaun Dr., Simpson Bay, St Maarten-St Martin   |  
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Ranked #1 of 6 Simpson Bay B&B and Inns
Winston, Oregon
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Had the time of our lives!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2012

Our stay at Horny Toad Guest House was PERFECT! It was exactly what we were looking for. Our room was right on the beach, and the view breathtaking. Everyone was SO nice and friendly! The rooms were clean and SO cute! The fresh flowers were breathtaking! Thank you for such a wonderful stay in St. Maarten! We will definitely be back!

Room Tip: Any room is wonderful! You won't be disappointed.
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  • Stayed January 2012, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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73 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    53
    14
    4
    0
    2
See reviews for
5
47
4
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 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 (23)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Columbus, Ohio
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2011

Our trip to SXM in Feb. was our ninth time on "our" island. We visit each year in Feb. to celebrate our anniversary (no kids on this trip!) by staying right where we got married!

Yep, Mark & I had an AMAZING & TOTALLY UNFORGETABLE wedding with our toes in the sand, the water occasionally lapping at our feet as the sun gently sunk for a typical beautiful Simpson Bay sunset...siigh...Had we not been fortunate enough to somehow stumble across Betty's place online we are POSITIVE our wedding day would have not have been nearly as spectacular! As we all say around the Toad, give Miss Betty a reason to celebrate & she will blow you away with the best time to be had!

Wedding day notwithstanding, we couldn't fathom staying anywhere else on the island (however, to our pals with whom we share our anniversary date, GM.R. & S.R.: invite us & we are there for the night to catch up, etc. You know it! Xo).

Every year at Betty's is a special treat. We feel like we are staying as personal guests with several of our SXM family & friends each year of Betty's. Needless to say, none of us are related & all of the friends we share this annual time period with are folks we have met through Betty &/or the Toad.

THTGH is unique & wonderful for so many reasons beginning with the GORGEOUS beach! Waking up each day to that crystal clear, richly colored turquoise water with a view of Saba in front of you will steal your breathe every time. We all have passed many a day (& cocktail hour!), staring at what is before us with an awestruck feeling of newness only to snap out of it & realized everyone else has been doing it too! Lol, hence discussions on the topic & onto many others must ensue while bottles hiss open & ice clinks in a glass and suddenly snacks begin to appear as more people trickle down to catch up and plan, share, laugh, cry, solve the world's problems & compare tanlines. It does not get better!

Each room of THTGH is special & has a unique "something" about it. For instance, Unit 6bwhich is now known as the "Bridal Suite" ;-) has special tile in the shower that was brought over from St. Barth's! "Our" room is Unit 4 upstairs corner/end which features an outdoor shower! Each room has it's own kitchen, bath w/shower and some sort of seating.

If you are looking for a resort, NOT the place for you! Also, there is not a pool (who needs one with that clean, sparkling gem if the ocean steps away?!), no public bar or anything like that (though we all will share!!), and the House is NOT family/kid friendly. It is meant to be a couples getaway.

For those with concerns regarding airport/plane noise, please keep in mind, there are actually two airports on an island that is only 37sq. mi! The sounds of planes coming & going is all over the island. If you are lucky enough to be STAYING on the island (vs cruising or connecting), you get used to plane sounds super fast and know when the airport "must be slow today" :) . Also, Princess Juliana (sp?) is a big, BUSY international hub...there will be noise, but also some amazing photo ops as the double decker massive planes from Amsterdam or from France glide in - WOWSA!

There are no phones, televisions or clocks in the rooms unless you bring them yourselves. It's vacation! We are SUPPOSED to be outside anyhow!

Yes, the power goes off sometimes, yes the water is PRECIOUS with low pressure; wi-fi can be perfect or as cranky as a tired toddler. These are issues of island living, not specific to the HTGH or even to SXM.

It is alll gooood on The Friendly Island! Come February 2012, if all goes well that is of course, we will all take a moment & raise our drinks to say "thank you" to those either leaving on the ships we see each day as they make their way to/from port &/or to those who chose to stay elsewhere for fancy trimmings while we enjoy our own happy hours with our island "family", our drink of choice, our PRICELESS view in front of our very special, comfortable, clean and lovely accommodations. Why would we say "thank you", you ask? Why for choosing to stay at or go to a place that makes you happy and content and gor leaving our little slice of perfection to those of us that love it!

No matter, give Sint Maarten/st. Martin a chance! There are so many STUNNING beaches if you venture off the typical trip to the very gorgeous Orient Bay. The island will penetrate your very soul if you happily allow it...as we say when we walk out of that airport each year and take after taking a sea scented deep breath, "Ahhh, it really is so good to be home."

Room Tip: Just remember, this is NOT A RESORT nor family friendly! Would hage for amyone to be expecting that...
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  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pensacola Beach, Florida
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2010

My boyfriend, who had his sailboat docked at St Maarten,stumbled across the Horny Toad while looking for aplace for us to spend some private time when I came to visit for a week between his sailing around the world.
What a jackpot and hidden beauty! We LOVED everything about it. Quiet, peaceful, serene, intimate, romantic.... I could go on and on.
Betty is doing a wonderful thing there by keeping it inviting, cozy and homey. We will definately be back next time my Captain sails into St Maarten..
Patty and Roger

  • Stayed April 2010, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hudson WI
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2009

We have stayed here for 5 years. We love it. Very clean. Safe. Beautiful beach. It is so relaxing. Betty is a gem. She knows St. Maarten and gives great recommendations. You can come here and relax. Shorts, a bathing suit and a good book. They have cocktail hour at 6, where everyone can gather if desired. The same people come back every year. The planes add to the charm. We love watching planes. They take off in the morning around 9 and late afternoon. Otherwise it is pretty quiet.
Do not come here if you desire luxury, want to wear designer clothes and impress people or want a 5 star resort. Come here if you would like to vacation in a very funky, clean and priceless gem - there are few places in the world left like this. I hope that when Betty decides to hang it up a large chain does not come in and spoil the charm!

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
massachusetts
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2009

This was the best place ever. We've been coming to st.maarten for about 6 years and we absolutely love it there. We've stayed other places, but this place was just FABULOUS....the views are spectacular, just breathtaking. The staff which were sisters, Gloria and Cherry went above and beyond to make sure you didn't want for anything.. my cell phone had no service when we arrived so i could not reach my children to tell them we had arrived safely and having no phone in the rooms, Cherry was so gracious to hand me her cell phone and told me to call home , which is in the united states, and is not a cheap phone call. She said, " don't worry about anything i understand it's ok.".now how many places could you stay at that would be so unbelievable to offer there cell phone to you....she was very helpful in making sure we could relax and have a great time and was very successful in doing so. The rooms were extremely clean and the hotel was very well kept and so was the sandy area and the beach. they do have a common t.v. which we watched almost every night. I highly recomend this hotel..

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2009

We were thrilled to get a room here and with all the glowing reviews in our heads, checked in to a nice room with all amenities - including a great kitchen. Fodors choice and Trip Advisor reviews all positive. Hooray we could have a wonderful holiday in St Maarten!

The good impressions faded quickly. Betty filled us in with the rules of the house - three pages of rules followed by the words ENJOY. Well could you? The planes roaring overhead are unbearable. Every ten minutes on our first day! Great when you have been up since four in the morning (travelling). All you want to do is rest, but that is simply not possible. Betty was actually surprised when we told her it was noisy! Maybe one gets used to it?

No rest but a nice hot shower would be good. Sorry, the water comes out in a dribble so slow it takes half an hour to rinse your hair and believe me, my hair is very short . You have to lean your body against the wall to get wet! (Rule No 15: SAVE WATER). The bed wasn't great either.


It would have been nice to have the hot water run on my back for a while as I had strained it carrying my very heavy bag across the gravel forecourt and then across the sandy pathway to our room. "You really must carry less luggage" I was told. I am not sure what your luggage is like at the end of your holiday but I had accumulated a lot after five weeks!!! Of course my heavy luggage is my problem, but safe and effective access to the room is the owners responsibility.

We later realised that there was a direct paved path to our room through a gate located at the side of the property. I could have wheeled my case directly from the taxi to the front door - I fear it was too much good sport to watch me carry it! (Doesn't everyone have wheeled cases these days?) By the way, don't bother asking to use the side access - it is only used in an emergency - death perhaps?

Another point that was a little annoying (to say the least) was that the room had no curtains. Well it did have curtains on one wall in the lounge room but we were told not to draw them as it would knock the lamp off the table if a gust of wind blew. The problem is that you cannot sit at the dining table or on the lounge, without the entire beach (and the owner) peering through the window. If you sit on the lounge turn on the microwave for amusement - there's nothing else.

The bedroom was fitted with a curtain but unfortunately the hotel's kayaks were stored alongside that glass wall (next to the bedhead) and the marauding team of elephants upstairs enjoyed taking them out at dawn! (I could have sworn the reviews said it wasn't a great place for children).

I can go on, and on, but these were the main failings in my opinion. We moved swiftly to another hotel and really enjoyed our time in St Maarten. Just pay more, stay somewhere else and you'll have a great time.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new york
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2009

Our first time at the Horny Toad, and hopefully not our last. This is a small-dare I say old-fashioned- charming guest house. It's in a real neighborhood, on a quiet wonderful beach. Betty makes you feel at home from the moment you arrive. It's simple-just what we wanted-no TV or phone, just the sound of the waves-and of course the occasional plane-but somehow that's part of the charm. Most of the other guests have been coming back year after year -and welcomed us. Gathering at 6PM for cocktails and the setting sun part of the charm of the Horny Toad. Love it.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 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.
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Additional Information about The Horny Toad Guesthouse

Address: 2 Vlaun Dr., Simpson Bay, St Maarten-St Martin
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St Maarten-St Martin > Sint Maarten > Simpson Bay
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 B&Bs / Inns in Simpson Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — The Horny Toad Guesthouse 3*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Horny Toad is a deliberately small and distinctive guesthouse known for its congenial and unpretentious atmosphere. The original building is a former governor's house tastefully renovated into spacious, fully-equipped apartments. Each of the eight apartments is delightfully different, displaying a personality of its own. All rooms have fully-equipped kitchens, king size beds, complete baths with shower, and daily maid service. Fresh flowers are arranged in the units every day. The guesthouse is on the beach and provides beach chairs, towels and floats. An outdoor barbecue pavilion with two Weber gas grills, table and hammock allow you to enjoy dining beach-side. Simpson Bay beach is a beautiful, uncrowded mile-long beach - just a few steps from each apartment - great for walking, swiming and sunbathing.The Toad has been awarded Fodor's Choice Award each year including the most recent in 2012. They called us the "island's best value" on the Dutch side of St Maarten.This is a No Smoking property. No children under seven years of age, please. We can arrange to have a rental car for your use and stock your unit with food before arrival upon request. There is free high-speed WiFi in all the units and a complimentary computer with internet access and printer in the business center/reception area. Free gated parking on the property. Grocery stores, French bakery, shops and multiple restaurants are within a 5-6 block walk. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Horny Toad Guest House Hotel Simpson Bay
The Horny Toad Guesthouse St Maarten-St Martin/Simpson Bay

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