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“You could do MUCH better” 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, Oyster Pond, St. Maarten-St. Martin   |  
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Ranked #5 of 7 Hotels in Oyster Pond
Carlsbad, California
Level Contributor
20 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“You could do MUCH better”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2013

We stayed here for one night before a Windstar cruise. After a grueling journey that included a red-eye out of LAX, an almost four-hour early-morning layover in Atlanta, and the flight from hell to SXM (wedged in between two passengers who each needed a seat and a half, one of which coughed all over me the entire way), I was looking forward to a nap in our room at the Westin, a room that, I might add, cost us over $600.

We arrived at about 4:30 in the afternoon, only to be told, “Unfortunately, we do not have a room for you right now.” A couple of phone calls were made, and I overheard something like, “Well, we could just give them that lady’s room.”

Twenty minutes later, we were given the key to “that lady’s” room and were directed to a wing of the hotel about half a mile from the lobby. For six hundred bucks, I guess I expected more. The room was big enough, but the view was of a driveway and the toiletries were something you’d find in a cheap motel. And it evidently hadn’t been cleaned since “that lady” vacated it. There was a fruit plate and a card addressed to her on the dresser, and the room was dirty. For example, there was dried blood on the bathroom floor.

We soon found out why “that lady” vacated this room. It was one of those rooms with a thin door in between it and the adjoining room, the kind of door that lets in ALL the noise from the next room. And there were a bunch, maybe five, loud unattended kids in that room. The hotel staff seemed to think we had something to do with them and kept showing up at our door for reasons that had nothing to do with us. Unbelievably, the parents even came into our room once, looking for their kids. Of course we asked to be moved, and of course the answer was no.

I would not stay at this hotel again.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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1,720 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 (400)
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Sarasota, Florida
Level Contributor
220 reviews
83 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 126 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

Just returned from a meeting we hosted at the Westin Dawn Beach Resort. We took 45 clients to this property for the first time.

Having done a few dozen meetings in the carribean I will start by saying this is one of the best experiences i have had at any hotel in the islands. From the moment we arrived the service was exceptional. From the regional manager, Dan all the way through the various staff levels everyone was attentive to every detail of our event.

We stayed in an ocean front room that was very well appointed. Clean, updated, excellent amenities. The ocean front rooms are close enough to the surf you can hear the waves break at night. Great views, well appointed through out.

The staff and service was a definite 5 out of 5. Our meeting coorindator, Minu, attended to each and every guest and knew them by name. We hosted several events and the food quality was exceptional. Oh, yes, the head chef also stopped by to make sure we all enjoyed the food. They simply do not miss a beat at this property.

The restaurants are great, there is a great evening buffet with a show one night. Also, the casino offers all games and is a fun spot to enjoy some gaming.

We will definitely take groups back but more importantly, my wife and i will visit this property again for some R&R. It beats other propertys like the Ritz Carlton St Thomas and even Four Seasons Nevis - this was hands down the best service to be had.

Room Tip: spring for an ocean front room - the views are incredible
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • 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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san diego.california
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

we sailed from St Marteen to Anguilla and St Barth on MADIBA a 45 ft catamaran for a week and the experience was heaven. To come back to reality we chose the Westin. It was 45 minutes from Simpson Bay where the catamaran drop us off, about the same from the airport, 30 minutes from Marigot and Grand Case.There were plenty of taxi drivers (thank god) there is nothing really around the Westin and unless you have a car you need a taxi. The taxi drivers are great. I have to say we were so spoiled on the Madiba that it was hard to see so much of the staff looking so indifferent. The food was good and the Sunday brunch ( $50) excellent but you need to make reservations if you want to eat outside on the patio. Noone told us. The pool was nice but forget about an early morning swim 7am as it is very dirty with debris. They do vacuum around 8.I liked the beach bubble for $ 27 a day it was much cheaper than the 100/day pool side canopy.I loved the oceanfront room # 2170 - that was heaven to be in such a spacious space after the cabin on the catamaran or cabins on any cruise ship. BIG FISH a great restaurant down from the Westin.
Marigot had a lot of great restaurants. Grand Case has also great restaurants with Calmos and Blue Martini offering great music on certain days of the week.The Westin offered free WiFi and that was in itself a plus but most of all if one wants a quiet vacation away from the hustle bustle then the Westin is it. There is absolutely nothing to do but lay around the pool or beach when it is calm. There is also a very deserted casino.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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NJ
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2013

We stayed here for a week in January and had a wonderful time. Since it was our honeymoon the management placed champagne and chocolate covered strawberries in our room upon arrival. The rooms are spacious and very clean. Staff are always cleaning the hotel and grounds. The concierge was always very friendly and helpful, and often had ideas for down times.
The hotel is located in a quieter section of the island, which was great for us, but there are a few nice restaurants minutes away by car. It's also one of the few hotels that sits on the beach. We did not eat in the hotel's restaurants.
If you are looking for a luxurious hotel without paying $$$$$ for some of the French boutique hotels, I would definitely pick the Westin.

  • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Raymond, New Hampshire, United States
Level Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

We arrived in St. Maarten for New Year's Eve 2012 and were originally staying on the french side of the island. We did so for one week and then were approached to view the time shares at Dawn Beach. This was the best decision that we have made by far while on vacation. We met with Jo, who showed us the property and discussed the pro's and con's with us of the island, etc. We were wowed by the room and the friendliness/service that we recieved from all of the staff that we encountered. We then met with Bernadette, who couldn't have been more helpful with the financing portion of our transaction. From start to finish this was a top rate experience. So much so, we bought the timeshare and moved right onto the property. Leaving our room on the French side of the island behind. We've now been here for one week and can't say enough about the staff here, from the Regional Director to the Manager on Duty and the everyday staff it has been a wonderful experience. Sure you encounter people in the hallway that want to get you involved in a tour but that's their job and how else will people like us know about such wonderful opportunities. It's not something that you seek out on your own at a place like the Westin. Who knew they even had timeshare opportunities. There are several restaurants on the property as well and the food is wonderful. We would highly recommend this destination as a must for any traveler.

Room Tip: If you're traveling with a large group as for the third bedroom of the villa to have a bed inste...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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.
Denville, New Jersey
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

We first visited Dawn Beach on July 2011.The place is beautiful and my 2 teen-aged boys loved it so we bought a time share. The unit was very big with upgraded kitchen appliances. When we came back on June 2012 to stay in the unit, there were ants in the unit, the kichen appliances were old and rusty with missing kitchenwares and the fire alarm kept going on even if we were not cooking. We also lost electrical power on and off for 2 days which caused some of our perishable foods to be spoiled. We have to get ice cubes during that time.They sprayed ant insecticide 2x but it exacerbated my allergies and I was feeling congested during our stay. We were invited to meet with a Dawn Beach representative and we tried to address the inconvenience to her. However, she focused on selling us additional weeks rather than focusing on improving the services. When she realized that we were not ready to buy additional weeks of stay, she gave us an attitude. Finally we were able to talk with one of upper management staff who promised to address our concerns and complaints. Now, we are returning this year with friends who are potential buyers. As time share owners of Dawn Beach, we want the resort to succeed. The place is excellent but the services could surely have improvements. Our kids also wish that the resort will have more fun activities so they don't get bored and that's also one of the reasons why we are bringing friends with us. We are now looking forward to our next visit at Dawn Beach this summer. We are hoping to have a better time and have a more fun and excellent experience.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Livingston, New Jersey
Level Contributor
39 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2013

We just finished our 8th stay at the Westin Dawn Beach in the last 6 years. It remains one of our favorite vacation spots in the world. The staff -- from the bellmen when you pull up to the front desk to housekeeping to the casino dealers -- are wonderful, welcoming and warm. There has clearly been on-going maintenance and upkeep around the property - new carpets in the hallways, new shower fixtures, and some cosmetic work around the pool.

You need to rent a car -- the hotel is located about 2 km off of the "main road" of SXM, and it's a steep (nearly 400 foot vertical rise) hill if you want to walk over to Mr Busby's or the Marina area. There are always taxis available, and it's about a $20 ride to just about anywhere if you prefer not to drive the unmarked streets in the dark.

That said, this isn't the highest end of the Starwood properties -- it's above the midpoint in terms of price and exclusivity, but I don't understand the complaints about cost. It's a fair price for high season considering the hotel facilities. Similarly, I don't understand complaints about service - what I have found is that if you treat the staff with gentility and respect, and don't bring a large dose of NY attitude, things are great. I witnessed more than a little bad guest behavior during our visits, from vulgar abuse of casino dealers to people who can't be bothered to clear towels off of (limited) pool lounges when they leave to people making demands of the concierge when they can't get dinner reservations during the Christmas-New Year's week (we book ours 2-3 weeks in advance). We have personally never experienced anything other than top-notch service here, and after our 3rd or 4th visit, the staff began to greet us by name. I don't get that at other Starwood properties where I visit 5-6 times (a year) for work. Even though the hotel has had a few different managers in the last 6 years (this is standard Starwood practice; they move people around and it's NOT a reflection on the property or the managers) the quality and consistency -- and the staff "family feel" -- hasn't changed been affected in the least.

The casino is small but reasonable; the rules are not exactly Vegas or Atlantic City player-friendly but if you want that action, go to Vegas or AC. The restaurants are fine but with some world-class French cuisine all of 15 km away in Grand Case, you have to venture out and explore.

If I have one (and only one) issue -- there is almost no shade by the pool. If you want to be outside and avoid the sun, you need to rent a cabana poolside or on the beach -- we typically drive over to Orient Bay and rent umbrellas for the day for that reason, then come back and relax poolside once the sun is less brutal.

Other little details - there's a small Westin Workout room that was just updated (treadmills, ellipticals, stationary bike, weight machines, free weights). The spa gets high marks from my family members who went for massages. The wireless works (again) and it even supports iPhone authentication, so if you want to use your iPhone without an international data plan, you can -- nice for Skype, WhatsApp, and iMessage.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 2
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, Oyster Pond, St. Maarten-St. Martin
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St. Maarten-St. Martin > Sint Maarten > Oyster Pond
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access 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:
Ranked #5 of 7 Hotels in Oyster Pond
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

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