We just returned from 7 nights at the Radisson Blu. Overall, I would describe this resort as elegant, chic, very french, extremely clean, on a beautiful piece of property. Yes, it is about 30 minutes from the airport, and you have to drive up and down a hilly road (very well maintained) to get there, but each time we entered the road, I felt like we entered our own private sanctuary. Once on the property, you are surrounded by gorgeous hills and water. The beach is a pretty, medium size cresent beach and the water is calm (and so warm!) because it is a protected cove. If you like waves, Orient Beach is 10-15 minutes away - beautiful long stretch of beach with good surf. The pool at Radisson is incredible - long, clean, deep and shallow ends, great chairs, umbrellas, palm trees - you will never feel that it's too crowded. The grounds of the hotel are perfect - palm trees trees throughout (including tall potted palms in the lobby and restaurant) and flowering shrubs - always very clean. The rooms are pretty, pastel colors - you pay slightly more for a room that faces the inner courtyard, but it's a nice feature to sit on the balcony and look over the property. The beds are extremely comfortable, very nice linens. The bathrooms are newly renovated and beautiful - dark wood, long granite (or corian?) counter, glass enclosed shower. The only refrigerator is a stocked bar, but we brought a small collapsible cooler and filled it with ice, to keep water and a few sodas cold. There is a "boutique" on site that sells snacks/drinks, and also has fashionable clothes from around the world.
We had breakfast included in our rate - I would highly recommend it. It is served in Le Marche - a beautiful open air room with high ceilings and potted palms. The breakfast is french, american, and caribbean - everything you could want - a great way to start the day. We ate a good breakfast, snacked during the day, and ate out for dinner - this helped make the food more affordable. We also ate a few times at the more casual side of the hotel's dinner restaurant - big tables with oversized cushions - you can get a great burger and fries there for an affordable price. Overall the food on the island is fantastic - great thin pizza that can be shared by two, wonderful pastas. We didn't go to any expensive, french restaurants, but there are many good ones. Our favorite restaurants were La Belle Epoque (Marina Royale in Marigot) and Le Piment (Place du Village - Orient Bay). We also had a great lunch at Au Petit Cafe Francais in Philipsburg on a picturesque little street.
We ventured out alot on the island - my idea was to have a nice comfotable place to stay but to go out and expose my teenager to the local culture - there are plenty of places to do that - Marigot, Philipsburg, Orient Beach, Pinel Island, etc. St. Martin is such an interesting mix of Dutch, French and Caribbean culture. One thing that the island doesn't seem to have is great snorkeling. We went on a two-hour snorkel trip and the fish variety and amount is limited - nothing like I've seen in Hawaii and other caribbean islands.
Back to the Radisson, in summary I would say that if you are looking for a place with beautiful facilities, quiet, elegant, this is your place. If you like things luxuries like swim-up bars, or a singles-scene, then this probably isn't for you. The clientele there is mixed - americans, french, spanish, families, girlfriends vacationing together - etc. This is what we liked most about it......enjoy!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Discover the Hotel The Hotel Riu Palace St. Martin, situated at the beachfront on the Caribbean island of St. Martin, is the perfect place for a dream vacation and it's ready for you to enjoy all the amenities and services RIU offers to its guests. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Radisson Blu Resort, Marina & Spa St. Martin Hotel Anse Marcel
- Radisson Blu Resort, Marina And Spa St. Martin
- Radisson Anse Marcel
- Anse Marcel Radisson
- Hotel Riu Palace St Martin St. Maarten-St. Martin/Anse Marcel