We stayed for a five-day weekend and loved this property. It felt luxurious and new and made for a wonderful long weekend . The only reason this doesn't get five stars were glitches at both check-in and check-out, which I'll explain below.
The great parts: The rooms are fabulous. We stayed in both a superior room and a suite. We actually liked the superior room better - it's smaller but luxurious and the bathroom was amazing. The bathtub looked out the window and it had an open shower - the suite had a smaller bathtub and no window in the bathroom. A butler was available, although we really didn't see him much.
The meals were great. We traveled over Eid weekend and got a half-board package with the breakfast buffet and dinner in Olea. Even during one of the busiest weeks of the year, the service was pretty good and there was vast selection of food. One evening while we were waiting to be seated, the F&B manager offered us dinner at Sontaya (the South East Asian restuarant) rather than wait for a table. The amazing meal ended up being a highlight of our stay!The manager was so kind and asked our food preferences before serving us a set meal, which was delicious in every way. We paid for our tasty cocktails (try the one with the chilli pepper!) just as we would have in Olea and were told the rest was covered. Knowing how spectacular the food and service is, we would happily go and pay for the full meal next time. Poolside food was okay, albeit pricey for simple choices. The drinks skimp a bit on the alcohol but all were acceptable.
The best part of our stay was spending day after day at the adult pool - a lovely pool with plenty of sun and shade and cabanas to sit and read or enjoy a cocktail. The service by the pool is attentive and kind.The St. Regis gets top marks for a relaxing pool-side vacation. The beach was also pleasant, but we preferred spending time at the pool. We took the free shuttle and taxis into town to go shopping and eat out.
Now here are the low points and the reasons that I could not give the hotel an excellent rating. Check-in was frustrating - I understand that it was a busy weekend, but as a Starwood Gold member, I was told that they couldn't give me the usual enhanced room. The previous day, I had received an email saying that I could upgrade my room for something like 120 aed. When I showed them the email, they said that I couldn't do that. Frustrating, but we just wanted to move on with our weekend. We later realized that we hadn't been offered the welcome drink, which we don't care about so much, but the front desk should.
Check out was more frustrating. We ended up standing around for about ten minutes before someone attended to us (they didn't have all the desks staffed). When we tried to settle our bill, it turns out that they had charged us over 350 aed for the "complimentary" meal that the F&B manager had treated us to - but phrased it instead that we had received a "discount" of 300 aed from the total bill! I explained that the manager had offered us the meal and personally escorted us and the restaurant staff had even written on the bill that the full amount was covered. The lady check-in insisted that WE "must have misunderstood." I asked that she call the F&B manager to clarify and she wouldn't. I asked that she call the front desk manager, but she kept insisting that we didn't understand correctly and that we had to pay for the meal. Finally, a front desk manager came and tried to sort it out, but I was rather upset at this point. He said he would take care of it, but we didn't really get apology for that kind of treatment. I'd never had an experience at a luxury hotel where someone tries to argue with you and blame you for their own system glitch. It really soured our last day. Quite unfortunate, as service in other areas was generally great, but the front desk staff left much to be desired.
Overall, we would love to return to the St. Regis but would hope that it'd be perfect next time. It's a lovely property with the potential to be a perfect vacation, if only the welcome and farewell weren't so frustrating.
We prefered the bathroom in the superior room over a suite.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Thank you for taking the time to post such a detailed review. I am pleased to read that you enjoyed an extended weekend at our resort, an address that is fast becoming the region’s perfect weekend getaway.
I do apologize for the shortfalls in the check-in and check-out, but I’m confident that your next stay with us will be seamless in every aspect.
It’s always a pleasure to read about our staff being warm and attentive as that is one of our cornerstones in delivering a bespoke experience so I’m glad that Sontaya, our Southeast Asian restaurant, delivered that personalized service.
Thank you again for your kind review and I look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.