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“You'll never top this one. The best of the best!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel L'Esplanade

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Hotel L'Esplanade
On the Hill of Grand Case, Grand Case 97150, St Maarten-St Martin   |  
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Ranked #2 of 6 hotels in Grand Case
Cape Cod, MA
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
“You'll never top this one. The best of the best!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2006

The best hotel value this side of the moon!
I was astounded by the extraordinary beauty of this magnificent, intimate property. As well as the incredible cleanliness and unrivaled attention to detail. Never have I been more pleased with every aspect of a hotel experience. Never have I felt more well tended to. There aren't words to explain this most perfect setting. Sweeping panoramic vistas of a crescent bay. A handful of motor yachts and sleek sailing vessels bobbed at anchor on the tranquil, azure sea. Breathtaking sunsets from a private, (and I mean really private) balcony. The architecture and quality of materials used in constructing this hidden gem is truly a feast for the eyes. The abundant gardens dripped with multi colored bougainvillea and hibiscus blossoms. The uncrowded oasis pool is sheer paradise, dressed to kill with a mahogany swim up bar, imported tile and crystal clear water. Who could ask for more? Did I mention Petit Plage? We found it to be a gorgeous and special little beach only barefoot steps away. The management of this fine family run boutique hotel could teach the 5 star hotels of this world a thing or two about customer service. The ever present, cheerful, professional staff can't do enough for you. By the end of the first day, I felt like a family member. To say they treasure their guests is an understatement. Shhhh, let's keep this one quiet, everyone returns year, after year, after year and...if the word really gets out none of us will be able to get back in. If you want a sure fire winner...run don't walk. L'Esplanade will spoil you for anything else.

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 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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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (80)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2006

My fiance and I traveled to St. Martin in November 2005 and I have not had a chance to write a review, but after reading the previous negative review, I felt compelled to write. Hotel L'Esplanade went above and beyond our expectations in terms of rooms, service and value. We stayed in an oversized deluxe loft and I must say that we have never stayed in a room as beautiful or with such breathtaking views (see attached pics). When we first stepped into the room we were just blown away at the size and the loveliness of the room. The grounds were perfectly maintained and the flowers and greenery gorgeous. Every amenity imaginable was available and when we asked for a voltage converter, it was immediately delivered to us. The staff booked our restaurant reservations prior to our arrival and helped us revise them when our plans changed during our stay.

Location - L'Esplanade is located on a hillside, not directly on a beach, but this was not a problem as we rented a car and traveled to the different beaches on the island. We actually prefer the variety and seeing the differnt sights, but if you do not rent a car you can walk to Petit Plage at the base of the hill, which is small, but pretty and uncrowded. You could also try the beach at the sister hotel Le Petit. Many of the restaurants in Grand Case offer use of their beach chairs if you eat at their establishments-La California and Los Calmos being two of them. Orient Beach has a nice strip of beach and many water activities,(along with nudists), but we found it to be overcrowded and not as relaxing. If you want large, crowded beaches stay on the Dutch side or Orient Beach. If you prefer a low-key environment, privacy and relaxation try Grand Case and the other beaches on the island not surrounded by resorts.

Restaurants - Grand Case offers a variety of top-notch restaurants. A few that we would try again are Le Pressoir and La California and Marios's Bistro in Sandy Ground. We ate at La California for lunch on the day of our arrival and went back there many times for their delicious food and friendly service. In fact, we traveled on to Anguilla after our stay in St. Martin and took the ferry back to St. Martin for a day because we missed Grand Case and our lunches at La California. On a side note, Anguilla has some of the most beautiful beaches we have seen, soft, powdery white sand, but other than that there is not much to do. Take a day trip there to experience the beaches, but stay in St. Martin for some flavor.

Night Life - Grand Case does not have much of a night life and therein lies the beauty of St. Martin. Just drive over to the Dutch side for casinos and shows and drive back to the French side for peace and quiet. Los Calmos Cafe in Grand Case is open late and you can have late-night drinks on the beach which is a nice touch.

For us Grand Case felt like a cultural experience as well as a vacation. Usually when traveling to Caribbean islands, you get the beautiful weather and beaches, but everything is commercialized and the experience becomes generic. In Grand Case, the locals mix with the tourists and you get the true feel of the island - not your cookie cutter experience behind resort gates. All in all, St. Martin has something for everyone. If you prefer big resorts stay on the Dutch side. If you prefer privacy and tranquility, stay at L'Esplanade for unparalleled service, accomodations and ambiance. You won't be disappointed. We plan on returning to L'Esplanade for a longer stay in May and we can't wait! Hope this was helpful. Enjoy!

  • Stayed November 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2006

I read all the reviews about this hotel and it's location before we booked a week there the end of Jan. Everyone of the reviews was so glowing. But to my stunned amazement the reality turned out much differently. What view there is is somewhat less than spectacular. And Grand Case? The "Grand" part is somewhat of a misnomer. The town seems depressed and depressing, as does the rest of the island. What beach at the end of the short path down the hill is everyone talking about-the pathetic strip of sand to the right known as Petit Plage which is abutted by concrete walls? My girlfriend likened it to Soviet Russia. We did have a problem with the airline breaking the main latch on one of our bags, and the women that attended us at the hotel was extremely accomadating-I think here name was Fanny-couldn't have been nicer, making arrangements with the airline etc. We booked out of there after one night-took the plane over to St. Barth and had a wonderful rest of our vacation. Please please PLEASE know I am not a complainer, but this was a mind blower.

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Owner/Manager at Hotel L'Esplanade, responded to this review, February 9, 2006
In response to our recent guest from Fairfield, CT., St. Martin is obviously not for him and I feel he took out his dismay with the island on our hotel. He came through a travel agent so perhaps the agent mislead him? Often times people that love St. Martin, dislike St. Barths and visa versa...this is why we own a property on St. Barths as well! I think it is clear from all of our other reviews, as well as out TripAdvisor award that we strive to give our guests the best customer service possible. We are a small, family run business and we bend over backwards for our guests. If anyone has any questions or concerns as to whether or not L'Esplanade is for you, please feel free to email me. Thank you.
-Kristin Petrelluzzi
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2006

This pretty, well maintained hotel is a delight. The staff is attentive, cordial and helpful. The room was spacious and the view of the ocean from the patio framed in hibiscus and other local flowers was a perfect place to rest in between our forays into St Martin.

We found that the location, next to the restaurant row of Grand Case within walking distance of the water and some of the finest eating outside of New York was a find that happily seems to have been overlooked by most of the people we met. We will absolutely return.

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
75 reviews 75 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
127 helpful votes 127 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2006

We stayed here after I read all the reviews on this site and were very glad we did. We brought our 6 month old son and they were very gracious in accomadating all of us. Our room was immaculate and the "oversized loft" was a nice size for the 3 of us. All the staff were great and very helpful. The pool was nice and we enjoyed the pool bar (apparently not always open). It was an easy walk into town for all the wonderful restaraunts of Grand Case, though coming back up the hill was an effort. This is not the place to stay if you don't do steps well. We really enjoyed the location and being able to walk to such great restaraunts at night and not have to drive. The $1=1euro deal that many offered if you pay cash was great. We ate at Spiga twice, Rainbow, and Le Cottage and had wonderful meals at all of them. We would highly recommend L'Esplanade. We booked a package that included car and airport transfers and had a brand new car and reliable transfers.

Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2006

We had the pleasure of staying at the sister hotel to L'Eslpanade (Le Petit Hotel on the beach) the previous week. We were encouraged to visit L'Esplanade on the hill and use the pool facilities. Once we took a stroll up to L'Esplanade we decided to try it out the next time we were in St. Martin - what we didn't know was that would be the next week as a side trip to St. Kitts turned out to be a disaster. We went over to St. Kitts after our week at Le Petit in Grande Case and upon landing at our hotel there, grabbed a cab to the airport and flew straight back to St. Martin all in the same 6 hours. The hotel on St. Kitts was nothing like we had been told it would be but that's another reivew. I called Patricia at L'Esplanade from St. Kitts and she luckily had a delux loft suite available for us so we jumped at it. A HUGE thank you to Patricia, Fanny, Julie, Muriel and Alen for all your gracious service, help, and most of all, welcoming attitude. L'Esplanade suites are beautifully decorated and all have a breathtaking view of the entire Grand Case Bay. You are only a 2 minute walk to restaurant row where you will experience some of the finest dining anywhere - or you can use the full kitchen facilities in your room. My husband worked for the airline for 23 years and we've done more than our fair share of travelling and I can honestly say, L'Esplanade is at the top of the list of worldwide places to stay. The hotel itself is beautifully tiled and the time and effort that has been put into landscaping and flowers and cleanliness is outstanding. I could go on forever, but its safe to say we will most definately be back to this little paradise. I won't bother raving about St. Martin as a destination becasue you've probably already decided that and you won't be disappointed - we've tried all the islands now and this is, hands down, our favorite. You can be very busy or do nothing at all. I've been home only a day and I'm planning next year's escape back to St. Martin already. We may even go back in the summer as I understand L'Esplanade has a great deal for the off season. This is a hotel with the service to back it up and you will get every pennies worth out of your stay at L'Esplanade. A million thank you's again to Patricia, Julie, Muriel, Fanny and the support staff for all your help making this an unforgettable holiday and a special thank you to Alen (who you'll find by the pool) who provided the best in the world Mango and Passion Fruit Smoothies, great burgers, a reliable rental car and a trip back to the airport. You're the best Alen! I could go on forever raving about L'Esplanade and just can't say enough good things but I think you get the point - not to be missed! I hate that I even had to leave at all!

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2006

As someone who reads reviews but rarely posts them, I want to express that Hotel L'Esplanade exceeded our expectations despite already being ranked #1. The room was very spacious and well furnished with a large balcony deck overlooking the ocean from a hillside. There was a fully equipped kitchen. We cooked gourmet breakfasts most mornings and ate outside. Even better, the service staff did the dishes. We were in St Martin over Christmas and requested a few days in advance that the hotel make our dinner reservations. We were concerned that the better restaurants might be booked full. Muriel did so with outstanding results. We had great tables at every place. We ate in 4 very good French restaurants in Grand Case: Le Pressoir, Le Cottage, Le Tastevin and Chez Martine. US cash was honored as euros at Le Cottage and Chez Martine. All had good selections of French wine but no real bargains. All were within a 10 minute walk of the hotel.

The Hotel L'Esplanade was a wonderful choice for us. We are very particular and usually stay at top rated hotels. This one lived up to and exceeded our expectations. A small note about pricing. The Xmas holiday season goes for a significant premium. If you go after January 5 or so, you get a better price. In the off season, rates drop even more.

Grand Case beach is small but adequate. I preferred the hotel's very nice pool for swimming and cocktails. We rented a car (best price was from Thrifty) in advance and drove from the airport. (You take a shuttle to the pickup lot.) We also used the car to visit the market in Marigot and the exceptional beachs at Orient Bay and beyond. The narrow roads need a lot of work. Beware of potholes and bumps on the side roads. On our final day, we drove to Phillipsburg, Simpson Bay and other towns on the Dutch side. They have duty free shopping, casinos and night clubs but also a lot of traffic and fast food chains. We will avoid them next time.

The airport was easy. Arriving 2 hours in advance as requested for our flight, we were through check in and security in less than 15 minutes. Once you clear security, there is very little to do except sit and wait. Visit the duty free shops before clearing security if you want to stock up on your liquor. However, our best purchases were in the local super market where we got a liter of Stoli for 5 Euros.

Stayed December 2005
Was this review helpful? Yes 22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Hotel L'Esplanade

Address: On the Hill of Grand Case, Grand Case 97150, St Maarten-St Martin
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St Maarten-St Martin > Saint-Martin > Grand Case
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 hotels in Grand Case
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Amid lush tropical gardens, affording its visitors privacy without sacrificing its panoramic ocean views. Spacious interiors blend harmoniously with the Mediterranean architecture. Magical sunsets come to you on your private terrace to touch your soul. A delightful footpath leads you on a journey of discovery. We invite you to find your own rhythm, knowing that our staff is there to ensure that your every day is a perfect day, knowing that your comfort is our excellence and with us, you are home. For those who appreciate privacy, enjoy an uncrowded atmosphere, gracious hospitality and seek relaxation in exclusive, blissful surroundings... welcome to Hotel L'Esplanade. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hotel l Esplanade

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