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st maarten

Montreal Canada
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34 posts
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st maarten

My Husband and I are planning a vacation to St Maarten for a week beginning Nov, 26. We are both in our 50's and from Canada.

We have been think of the Great Bay or the Maho resort. I have been reading the reviews and they are so mixed that now we aren't sure where to book. Any ideas?


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587 posts
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1. Re: st maarten

Here are my thoughts...

I've been to the Great Bay and have had friends who went to Maho (and I've stayed at the beach beside it). They are two very different experiences.

Great Bay Beach Hotel is a very simple hotel. If you get an ocean view room you will not regret it. The beach is very quiet and the hotel is a ten minute walk to town (great bussling town). Breakfasts, lunches, and dinners in the open air right beside the clear blue ocean. The only negative I can think of is that they don't have a huge entertainment staff (didn't bother me) and if you bring kids they may get bored.

Maho is almost like the Disneyland of hotels in comparison to Great Bay. Lots more to do at the hotel. However, it's right beside the airport (as is the beach) and while it might be fun to see a plane land or two, the sound might grow tiresome.

If you are more high-maintenance then Maho might be the safer bet. We are very easy-going on vacation so I loved Great Bay Beach Hotel and St. Martin (we also rented a car and explored the island). In all the vacations I've had it's still my favourite.


St. maarten
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737 posts
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2. Re: st maarten

RichieRich is exactly right. Maho is fun, Great Bay is relaxing. The nightclubs near Maho - Bliss and Bamboo Bernies stay open until 5 AM. There is not much to do at night near Great Bay but the beach is better and you are close to the shopping in Phillipsburg.

Great Bay had some problems with their renovation but I think they are fixed now. You get what you pay for at Maho. It is a very large resort with standard rooms, if you don't expect 5 star rooms and want to be where the action is, I think you will like it.

Lots of Canadians stay at both because Air Transat runs charters to each hotel

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398 posts
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3. Re: st maarten

I have stayed at both hotels and loved them both. Maho is more aesthetically pleasing with lush landscaped grounds and water fountains dotting the property. Great Bay has none of that. It is very stripped down and basic. It really depends what you are looking for in your hotel.

Maho has more of a varied food selection and more nightlife. Great Bay tends to be quieter at night.

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