Ok, so the last time I stayed here I gave it a glowing report. Link here: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g147350-d151326-r127336525-Royal_Palm_Beach_Resort-Simpson_Bay_Sint_Maarten_St_Martin_St_Maarten.html
And I do Still like the place...but perhaps it's room location or perhaps things have changed...but this review DID need to be written.
1) Location of resort is great. Nice beach on Simpson Bay, nice pool, walk to everything. I still want it because I love this island, but it is TOTALLY realistic to think about not having a rental car and staying here. It's simply great.
2) Facility and rooms. Good - - but dated. The bedding is nice, but not super nice. IT doesn't live up to the hype of the Diamond resorts "silky smooth" that Mr.Stephen J. Cloobeck the head honcho brags about on the endless loop video about the company that plays on the Room TV. Also the linens are ok, towels ok. but all could stand an update. There's a smell in the towels that is not horrible but should ideally not be there.
Furnishings are showing their age and not super comfortable. But the 2 bedroom suites are great for a family and there are NO serious complaints. Again, not living up to the DIamond standard in my opinion.
3) The main problem I had was with NOISE. Our room overlooked the ocean and pool...near the center of the resort on the 4th floor over the pool. Photos attached, it's great. Until 9am when they start SCREAMING at the pool for some aerobics or something a few times a week. Or they have "movie night" with the sound turned way up from 7 to 10pm - or they have a music thing all day one or two days at the pool with an irritating guy on a mike. My idea of relaxation is COOL BREEZES and QUIET. I'm perfectly happy with the sounds of kids laughing and playing at the pool mixed with my sea breezes and patio drinks. I'm NOT cool with hotel provided "entertainment" dominating my ability to use the patio, sleep with the windows open, etc....especially late in the evening and early in the AM. Talk about a jarring wake up....lovely breezes, gentle wake up, and then BOOM you're in a darn aerobics class surround sound...involuntarily.
This rating would go higher if they would simply SHUT UP and let people relax and entertain themselves. The movie night could EASILY be set up to face the other way (ie sit at beach not at pool to watch) and then the sound would be greatly reduced.
4. There are no screens in the windows or most doors. This means to get the lovely sea air you must tolerate bugs. That to me is TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE at a resort of this caliber. This must be addressed. If I wanted to sit around with the windows closed I could stay home. Seriously, I actually like this resort but this factor combined with the noise was a real downer.
5. They seem to be allowing a bit more of a rowdy crowd. In the room right below us....were a group of at LEAST 5 adult males in their early 20's partying and making LOUD obnoxious noises off their balcony until 4am. It took 3 calls....but management finally did succeed in getting them to shut up. I don't mean sitting on their patio and having drinks and talking too loud...like I said, I'm only 39 and enjoy a good time myself. But this was like hanging off the balcony and SCREAMING like a marine "uuhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh" at the top of their lungs HUNDREDS of times. Like, they were at a frat party. And NOTHING WAS DONE for 36 hours by security despite 2 phone calls and a personal visit to the front desk by me.
On Monday morning (our third morning there) I got a call from someone saying they were the manager and saying they had handled it and they promised to be quiet. And it was quiet after that...finally. However, it took WAY too long for this to go down...I was close to going and knocking on their door and having a conversation with them myself. The front desk seemed sympathetic but powerless to help me. I spoke to a security guy who kind of shrugged at me like "yeah they are some young guys". I was displeased it took so long for action to be taken. I got the feeling that the boss was not around and no one here knew what to do until the Monday morning 2 days later.
So - - this IS a significant update to my review from 2012.
I hope this info is helpful.
My tip would be to get a room at the FAR ENDS of the resort (not in the center) so you are not right over the pool.
6. Last but not least....the TV channels are a joke. We own a timeshare at the neighboring Simpson Bay Marina and it's hands down better. Moving here we lost HGTV, Showtime and Showtime 2, etc. Also, during the week channels disappeared from the lineup and the screen said they needed to pay the bill or resubscribe or something. Not that TV is why you come here but if you have a young kid it comes in handy at night.....just saying...for a "premium" resort these kind of challenges are not to be expected.
My tip would be to get a room at the FAR ENDS of the resort (not in the center) so you are not right...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.