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“Loved La Samanna” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Belmond La Samanna

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Belmond La Samanna
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   Baie Longue | PO Box 4077, Terres Basses 97064, St Maarten-St Martin   |  
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Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Terres Basses
Potomac Falls
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Loved La Samanna”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2007

We stayed over Thanksgiving and were pleasantly surprised that the resort was in high gear this soon after reopening. Our suite G11 with a roof top terrace was all we had hoped for and then some.

The prices are a bit high and some of the meals are not worth it, but given the number of other fine dining options we had no problem.

Orlando at the bar was excellent as were the remainder of the staff.

The only issues we had if you could cal them that were:

The beach was eroded, but we understand that this always happens early in the season and the length of time to get a cab.

But other than this everything was perfect.

The reosrt is pricy but the view and the service were worth it in my opinion.

Mark

  • Liked — the room
  • Disliked — length of time to get a cab
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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679 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (121)
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caribbean
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2007

We live on an adjacent Island and go to St Martin a few times a year to shop and eat. Having tried a number of hotels and never found one to suit us we decided to book La Samanna for a few days in November. Checking the reviews here I was concerned there were a few negative comments but we went ahead anyway. We are very glad we did.
We stayed in the Royal suite which was perfect. Imagine after a hard days shopping or a hard day at the beach relaxing in your own whirl pool, sipping champagne (complimentary) starring out to sea whilst listening to the contented snoring of your husband in his huge bubble bath.
All the staff without exception were friendly, courteous and professional. I felt they were genuinely interested in our wellbeing and not because they were trained or being paid to be.
Maintenance and housekeeping were faultless.
The restuarant (breakfast) and bar staff were very efficient.
We found the drinks on the high side but when you consider the level of service and the high quality of your surroundings it has to be paid for somehow.
Our last, shopless, thank goodness, day was spent by the pool.
The attention to detail again made it a relaxing experience. Water, cold towels and ice cream were offered during the day.
If you were to ask me if La Samanna was worth the cost I would say "yes". You are made to feel you matter and are not just a room number and I'm certain this is the case whichever room you chose.
Ten out of ten La Samanna.
Julie

  • Liked — courtesy
  • Disliked — leaving
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2007

Was looking for a location for a restful, romantic holiday with my boyfriend and came across La Samanna online. Was intrigued with it right away but was torn between it and CuisinArt on Anguilla. Finally decided on 2 nights a LaSamanna and booked a 5-night package at CuisinArt.

I was very disappointed in my nights at La Samanna and am so glad I did not plan the bulk of my stay there. Both nights, our air conditioning broke down (two different rooms mind you) so it was terribly hot in the rooms.

The Restaurant was closed both nights so it was either "The Grill" or go off-site. We ate on-site one night and went elsewhere the next as the food was just "so-so" at The Grill. Off-site, we went to Le Chanteclair and it was fabulous (although difficult to find as our cab driver did not know where it was)

Service was "good" at the hotel, but not up to the level I expect at a 4 (or is it 5) star resort. We have been to several between the two of us and this one disappointed terribly...

In the end, I would not go back to La Samanna but am glad I had something to compare CuisinArt to as it made my time there even more enjoyable...

  • Stayed August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LasaExec, Director of Operations at Belmond La Samanna, responded to this review, October 4, 2007
We were saddened to learn of the disappointment shared by our recent clients from Florida. After investigation, it has been noted that their reservation was indeed made with us for two 1 night stays, separated by a 5 day period.

I regret that these guests were unable to enjoy the delicious cuisine of our more formal Restaurant which was completely booked on their first night. On such occasions, guests are welcomed to our Grill Terrace, offering a choice of freshly grilled dishes and a salad buffet in a more relaxed atmosphere.

Each of our 81 rooms and suites are equipped with remote controlled air conditioning units, located in both living rooms and bedrooms for our guests’ comfort. Every measure is taken to ensure proper functioning of these units, with both regular servicing and a thorough walk-through of each room by the Housekeeping Supervisor prior to our guests’ arrival.

Unfortunately, our Front Desk’s daily records do not indicate that we were alerted by the guest to assist with the settings of their air conditioning. Of course, we wish for each guest to experience complete comfort and satisfaction during their stay. Nevertheless, we would much prefer the opportunity of learning a guest’s displeasure should their visit fail to deliver its full potential, by informing our Front Desk or one of our Managers during their stay. Immediate intervention is then possible, enabling us to go to appropriate lengths to ensure our valued guests’ satisfaction.

We are proud and committed to maintain and build upon a considerable number of guests returning year to year to enjoy our Resort. As per my letter and offer addressed to these clients will explain, should we be permitted the opportunity to welcome them back, I feel confident that they too will become part of this special family.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlotte N.C
1 review
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2007

When I read these reviews I always wonder who's writing them to get a sense of what level of expectations they have.
My wife and I are a professional couple that stayed at La Samanna in June. We can afford to stay at most places and only had a few desires. We wanted someplace that made us feel like we were in the islands. We wanted someplace clean that also had good service. We wanted to be on the beach.
We initially were looking for brand hotels Marriott etc as we could count on some level of expectation.
When you do your research you will find there are very few brand hotels. We booked the Westin on-line as it looked nice and new and we figured we new what we were getting.
While the Weston was a nice new clean hotel with a nice beach. We did not feel that the hotel gave you any sense of being in the islands. While in the hotel you would have not known whether you were in the city of Chicago or any other place for that matter. No knock to the staff or facility. Its just that we wanted the island experience.
We had a friend that had recommended La Samanna. Her exact words "just book it and forget about all the looking around"
So we drove there during our first day and Bingo, it was everything we wanted. We checked out of the Westin and spent 8 glorious day's at this fine hotel. The staff the service, dining, rooms, beach etc were all beyond our expectations. You will pay a little more but, just like everything else in life. You definitley get what you pay for.
We found the island to have great restaurants and beaches. Its a place we would definitly come back too.
As far as La Samanna is concerned. "Just book it and forget about all the shopping around".
Mark & Julie OBrien

Stayed June 2007
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2007

My wife and I split our honeymoon, with the first 5 nights at Cap Juluca and the last 5 at La Samanna. We had a near perfect stay at Cap Juluca with impeccable service, which raised our expectations for La Samanna. Unfortunately, our expectations were not met.
We arrived at La Samanna around 1 pm and were told that our room wasn't ready, which was fine, as it was early. We got lunch while our bags sat unwatched outside the entrance. We returned around 2:30 and our room still wasn't ready, and we were told 15 minutes, so we tried to find a concierge to plan future dinners and excursions. Many people were milling around but no one wanted to help us, so we just sat and waited. We checked back at 3:15 and our room still wasn't ready. When I began to complain, they made a call, and magically, it was ready.
Many other times it seemed that there were a lot of people at the front desk chatting while people waited for help. On our third day we asked two women behind the desk about amenities our travel agent told us we were entitled to. The first woman, who seemed to be a manager, politely told us that she was sorry but we were incorrect and we didn't get them. The other woman started screaming at me, "No, no, that is against the rules, no!" Several other times during our stay she acted as if she was doing us a big favor by answering a question.
We were upgraded to a one bedroom suite. The room was very nice - beautiful view of the water, large and modern bathroom, and the little kitchenette was a nice feature. It was a bit of a hike down to the last building, but that wasn't a problem. Unfortunately, one day the power went out, and if we hadn't been in the room, we might not have known - at Cap Juluca we would have received several notes under the door or a voice mail. When the power came back on our bedroom air conditioner and refrigerator still weren't working, so we called for help. Two hours later, we called again. Finally, an hour after that someone showed up - he was very pleasant but didn't totally solve the problem until the following morning.
The beach does not compare to Anguilla. There is a severe slope to get into the water and there were rocks - we were told that the rocks are seasonal. The pools are very nice, especially the infinity pool, and the service by the pools was generally good.
The breakfasts are excellent - a nice selection and some variation between days. Lunches by the infinity pool were also good. Dinners at the grill were nice, but not available every night. We ate at the main restaurant our last night and found the selection not to be very appealing and pricy. It tried to give the appearance of elegance yet there was a very amateurish accordion player destroying the atmosphere. When we asked the staff at the restaurants and the desk whether tipping was done French style or American style, we received contradictory answers, including opposite answers from two people standing right next to each other. Rather than making the hotel feel elegant and international, the pieces of French culture made the experience worse (I have had 4 wonderful visits to France and generally enjoy their culture).
We found St. Martin to be a letdown from Anguilla. The island is much more touristy and the residents were not nearly as nice - they seem to be worn down by loud American tourists from cruise ships. The shopping in Phillipsburg was underwhelming. Prices on the island are generally much more reasonable than on Anguilla. We found an excellent Moroccan restaurant in Marigot called Marrakesh that is not well publicized - there was only one other couple there. La Samanna is clearly the nicest hotel on the island, but if the service cannot be elevated to match its beauty, you are better off going to another island.

  • Liked — Nice rooms, beautiful views
  • Disliked — Service
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
seattle
1 review
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2007

My wife and recently completed a 4 night stay at La Samanna. We booked a beachfront suite. This is only a 5 star hotel as reflected in the cost of its evening meals. Sorry buy it should not be rated any higher than 4 stars and was FAR BELOW our expectations.

The Good:
1. Beautiful views from the main building of a seemingly empty beach
3. The infinity pool at the beach club. Small yet peaceful.
4. The wine list; but who cares. if you drink even the medium quality wines you will need to get a second job once you return home to pay for the cost. The wine prices are out of this world! Rent a car. Stop at a liquor store and buy your own wine. For that matter buy all your own liquor during your stay.
5. The sound of the ocean at day and night;; wonderful.
6. Oh, the airport is wonderful. One of the best in any where.

The Bad:
1. The beach. Prior huricanes have stripped the beach of its gentle sandy slope thus it has large slippery rocks to navigate prior to getting into the ocean for a swim.

2. Service: Not engaging. Except for the staff from the beach bar. You will need to charm the staff for better service. They do not have a professonal service ethic. The have a job but you can tell they are not happy with their career choice..

3. The cost of food ~ $100usd/person it was very disappointing and as another traveller stated uninspiring. Most of the food on this island is too expensive for what you receive. Eat at some of the establishments which local residents eat for good food at a reasonable cost.

4. The bed. Ours consisted of two twin beds pushed together. We could feel the seam between the beds as we attempted to sleep.

O.K. . . .I can say I been there and done that., but don't need to do La Samanna. again.

Stayed July 2007
Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portugal
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2007

Just completed a 5 night stay in La Samanna. Booked a beachfront suite w/ promotional rate. If you're expecting a 5 star experience that matches leading hotel chains like Banyantree, Four Seasons, Luxury Collection, etc... well...don't. That was my problem with. If you lower you're expectations and think of it as a 4 star hotel, then you'll be fine (but still with a bitterness in your mouth...for the value for money...)
What's great:
1.The location. Beautiful views from the main building and an empty beach for hotel guests. This means that you won't be fighting for chairs or space.
2. It is the best hotel in St Marteen. Well...the choice is not tremendous...
3. The infinity pool at the beach club. Tremendous view,
4. The wine list at the main restaurant. They have one of the best selections I've ever seen (and the most expensive one too).

What's terrible:
1. The beach. There's no sandy strips. You have too pass through slippery rocks across all beach if you want to swim in the ocean (not very safe for small children). All photos in website are misleading. If you want a nice ocean swim, you have to visit other beaches in the island (check orient bay or oyster pond).
2. Service: slow and unfriendly. Except dinner staff from the main restaurant, the rest of the them are often rude and always make you feel like you're interrupting their group chat or their "stand up siesta". I know it's the caribbean... but you would expect something else from an orient express hotel.
3. The food. The worst value for money ever. Dinner costs over 100usd/person but it's so poor and uninspired... Room service menu is lousy and tasteless. You'll have to go to other restaurants in the island for a nice meal (we had a great italian meal at La Gondola, near Atlantis Casino)
4. The small details that would make the difference. If you have an high benchmark, like Banyantree, Parrot Cay or 4Seasons, then you should lower your expectations. No beach towels available in one of the days; a 19th century noisy a/c in room (had to use airplane earplugs); leaking shower with water temperature hard to regulate; no 24H room service (despite being advertised as such); pool was not cleaned every day (sand kept accumulating in bottom), etc. etc. these are the small things keep adding day after day and make you feel like you've made a poor deal for the price you pay.

  • Liked — the views
  • Disliked — the beach and quality of service
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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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Additional Information about Belmond La Samanna

Address: Baie Longue | PO Box 4077, Terres Basses 97064, St Maarten-St Martin
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St Maarten-St Martin > Saint-Martin > Terres Basses
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Terres Basses
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Belmond La Samanna 5*
Number of rooms: 81
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
La Samanna nestles amongst lush gardens overlooking 55 acres of spectacular beachfront. A complete resort in itself, La Samanna offers a spectacular private beach, two poolside terraces, 83 luxurious rooms and suites and 8 newly completed 4600sq. ft. villas with private pools. Enjoy its sophisticated food offerings and award winning wine cellar, indulge in its European Elysees Spa, or simply enjoy the privacy and relaxation of this sophisticated and sensual French-Caribbean enclave. La Samanna is everything you could wish for in a Caribbean hideaway. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
La Samanna By Orient-Express Hotel St. Maarten/St. Martin
La Samanna Hotel
La Samanna Resort St Martin

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