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“Fabulous location” 4 of 5 stars
Review of La California

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La California
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134 Blvd de Grand Case, Grand Case 97150, St Maarten-St Martin   |  
Hotel amenities
Kingston, Ontario, Canada
Top Contributor
97 reviews 97 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
97 helpful votes 97 helpful votes
“Fabulous location”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2008

Had another wonderful visit to LaCalifornia, this time for 2 weeks. ZuZu was great, as always, arranging a taxi to pick us up at the airport and making dinner reservations. We stayed in the two bedroom apartment, with an amazing view of the sea and Anguilla. The apartment was just perfect for a relaxing time in Grand Case, right on the beach and close to the amazing restaurants.

  • Liked — the location
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
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20 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    6
    12
    0
    1
    1
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5
7
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
New Hampshire
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2007

Over a period of sixteen years, my wife, now sixteen-year-old daughter and I have stayed in a number of places on the French side, including some extravagant villas; our current point of view is that, given the choice, we will stay nowhere else than La California.

Stayed February 2007
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minnesota
2 reviews
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2007

In 2006 we visited St. Martin for the first time with a brief stay at a small luxury hotel on the beach. We fell in love with St. Martin in general and Grand Case in particular and decided to return in 2007 -- not for three days, but for three weeks. La California provided exactly what we needed for a longer stay. The two-bedroom unit gave us lots of space so we could accommodate visits from family members. The off street parking, the well-equipped kitchenette, the clothes washer (do you believe it?), the two full bathrooms and the king sized bed were all greatly appreciated. And, you can’t do better for location -- you can walk to anything in Grand Case, by beach or by street. If you’re looking for exclusive luxury and fine amenities, you won’t find them here. La California is basic, but it’s clean, spacious, well equipped, affordable and well managed. ZuZu will take good care of you. I’m betting you’ll reserve your spot for next year before you leave, as we did.

Stayed January 2007
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florida
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 8, 2007

We stayed the beginning of December 2006 for 5 days. The hotel location was very close to all that Grand Case had to offer (which was mostly the best food you can imagine). The hotel is on top of a restaurant (La California Restaurant) that was excellent. The owner and employees were very helpful and accomodating, they really wanted us to feel at home. The balcony overlooking the beach is spectacular (it is RIGHT ON the beach, not just beach view). Our room had an iron and ironing board, hair dryer, and an current converter for small things like battery chargers or a laptop. Our particular room had a kitchen and a washing machine for laundry. I would highly reccomend staying here because you can walk to all of the restaurants and the employees are very plesant. If you are planning on checking in before 6pm, arrange this witht he owner in advance. There is a parking lot across the street for guests of La California (I high reccomend renting a car and seeing all the island has to offer)

  • Liked — Location, price, food, people
  • Tips/Secrets — Check in is later, no need for current converter, rent a car
  • Stayed January 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arlington, VA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2006

I stayed at la California 12/02/06 to 12/16/06.
What was once an OK value is no longer worth the aggravation. The restaurant has been sold beginning of December. Zuzu still owns the second floor apartments but is no longer on the premises.
Zuzu knew my arrival time -mid-afternoon-. I found a note that she would stop by at 6:00pm. She showed up at 6:30pm after being called. I couldn't get into the apartment because one of the keys wasn't working. I had to wait outside for one and a half hour, after flying since 6:00am and being up since 1:30am.
I had rented an apartment with balcony on the beach -unit 2-. Only I could not use the balcony because of a construction going on one foot away from my balcony. Construction workers start hammering and drilling at 7:00am to 5:00pm: Too bad if you want to sleep.
I had to have breafast and lunch inside during my two weeks stay, on a filthy futon -the only seat- and a coffee table, with the balcony doors closed. When I tried to step out on the balcony, the construction workers were so close that they were leaning on my balcony, whistling and insulting me for no reason.
I had to stop washing my clothes when I found cement on an Armani t-shirt.
I found out upon arrival that the balcony left french door lock was broken and anybody could walk in. Zuzu told me the door would be fixed the following Monday, then it was supposed to be fixed on Tuesday, but I had to go to bed five nights with a broken balcony door lock and I had to lower the storm protection panel each night. I hurt an arm badly while doing so and had to make a trip to the pharmacy.
I woke up one Sunday morning to no running water. The apartments' water is coming from the restaurant below. If the restaurant water system is down, you're on your own and have to wait till after 11:00am for the restaurant to open.
When the restaurant is running water, you can barely take a shower.
Case in point: I was charged for an apartment with a balcony on the beach that I could not use and this is totally dishonest.
Zuzu never told me about the construction when I made my reservation, even though she is aware I am a recovering cancer patient who used to go to St. Martin only for peace and quiet.
Those apartment aren't worth $750.00 a week anymore -make that $900.00 right now and $1,100,00 Xmas week-.
The sea has risen. Grand Case beach is almost gone. The sea was slamming La California walls: It's no longer La California on the beach, but La California on the water.
Don't make the mistake I made: I paid for my two weeks stay upon arrival. What can I say, I thought Zuzu was honest.
I gave La California a very good review in 2004, but the place has been going down ever since because it has not been kept at all.

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — No use of balcony; flithy futon; mold on frige door; broken balcony door lock; little running water
  • Tips/Secrets — Only good for someone who will use the place to crash nights and leave early morning
  • Stayed December 2006, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pepitaStMartin, owner at La California, responded to this review, March 6, 2007
I am Zuzu the owner for 9 years and I build my reputation everyday with a lot of work and attention. My customers come every year and they feel at home so I am very sad for this review, but I don't understand all this hatred. As you see I have very good reviews before and after this one. Hope you'll trust me in the future. Also the construction is completely finished
zuzu
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Orleans
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2006

Just returned from our stay at the California and can honestly say all the reviews are true. This is a delightful place with an amazing staff. Having stayed in a number of 5 star hotels, can say that most could learn from Zuzu and her staff. They are the best. The food is some of the best I have tasted. The hotel is in the heart of the food and culture capital of the island and is not to be missed

  • Stayed July 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
US
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 11, 2006

We stayed in the La California, 2 BR, waterfront apartment in May 06 on our 20th anniversary trip and LOVED it! Highlights: Private waterfront deck with chairs, table, couch and fouton. Quiet, barely-peopled beach with incredibly soft, white sand and clear, warm water. Walking distance to Grand Case's wonderful restaurants, little shops, the Grand Case Beach club for excursions, and the market for wine, cheese and bread. Absolutely awesome host, Zuzu, who also arranged our rental car (Nono's Car Rental - terrific - included ferry pick-up and airport drop-off), provided secure parking and found us a very well-priced rental cell phone.

Zuzu, her family and staff, are warm, welcoming and wonderful. Their La California restaurant on the street level of the building has a fun, funky vibe and fabulous food. The apartment has all the basics in terms of dishes, pots, pans, etc., but bring or buy napkins, paper towels, coffee filters, laundry soap and such. I was not cooking on this trip, so we did not need much of those basics. The washing machine was having some problems (we had to manually advance the cycles), but was still wonderful to have. Undoubtably, it is now fixed. Also, free internet down in the restaurant/shop area was a treat. There is no problem with noise from the restaurant below; on your little deck you just feel away from it all, looking across the water to Anguilla.

If you like privacy, independence, being on the water and having a gracious host, this is the place for you. Thanks Zuzu!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about La California

Address: 134 Blvd de Grand Case, Grand Case 97150, St Maarten-St Martin
Location: Caribbean > St Maarten-St Martin > Saint-Martin > Grand Case
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 4 Specialty Lodging in Grand Case
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 5
Also Known As:
La California Hotel Grand Case

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