What a beautiful and relaxing resort, right on a lovely white sand bay. We stayed here on the last day of our 10-day trip to St. Martin, and it was a perfect end to a wonderful vacation. Frommer’s describes it as the “flagship of the Divi chain” says it is “consistently ranked as one of the best family vacation resorts in the Caribbean,” and “evokes a European seaside village w/ some Dutch colonial touches.” Hard to improve on that. We booked in on an RCI timeshare points exchange, and after reading some previous reviews requested a deluxe or luxury suite.
The unit: When we arrived, we received a “casita” located on the hill, a bit behind the line of hotel rooms and suites right on the beach/boardwalk, and wow – it was stunning. It was beautifully done w/ nice tilework, dark wood furniture and classy furnishings throughout; leather chairs around the large dining table; beautiful cherry cabinets in the kitchen, w/ full-sized stainless steel fridge, nice stove, dishwasher. We had flatscreen TVs in living room and bedroom and nice private patio; all the units now have free wi fi and are non-smoking. Note that in the casitas, since they’re set back, you won’t have the full-on ocean view that you do if you’re right on the water, but the fact that we had our own private villa/casita made up for that for us.
The location: the Divi is in one of best locations on the island, in our opinion. Located on beautiful Little Bay, where you can swim and snorkel, and just 15 min. walk or 5 min. drive to Phillipsburg, and 15-20 min. drive to Simpson /Maho bays. But unlike those areas, where there are often timeshare hotels crammed next to, in front of and behind other timeshares, this one is stretched out, on its own, along Little Bay – much more relaxing. Note: if cruise ships aren’t in, Phillipsburg is pretty dead, i.e. we walked around for 2 hrs at 5 pm and found only one decent looking restaurant open (Taloula’s) and it wasn’t that great.
They have 3 pools – a small one by the casitas, a nice one in the middle and a vanishing edge pool up near the top of the resort w/ gorgeous views looking down on the cliffs and the whole bay – small, but stunning, and there was only one other couple up there the morning we were there. There are also hot tubs by each one, which were popular when the sun went down.
There are 3 restaurants and 2 outside bars – the Seabreeze Restaurant and bar by the main pool, which is only open for breakfast and lunch for food, and has happy hr (1/2 price drinks) 4-6 pm, then there’s Gizmo’s Bar across from the beach (named after the parrot, Gizmo, who is usually hanging around close by), happy hr 5-7 pm. Great atmosphere; good drinks; service was a bit slow – might need more than 1 bartender during happy hr. They also serve “bar food” such as pizzas, burgers, fries, etc. We tried the jerk chicken pizza, but it nothing about it (crust, sauce, cheese, toppings) was very good – if you’re looking for good pizza, try Sunset Bar in Maho. Next to Gizmos, the Toucan serves lunch and dinners (often buffets). Sat. night, it was a prime rib buffet for $28/person (didn't look worth that to me).
Other amenities – there is also a gym, spa, cappuccino counter, grocery store, computer/internet stations, watersports center where they rent kayaks, boogie boards, hobie cats, snorkeling gear, etc., tennis courts, dive shop, Thrifty car rental (David there is so friendly - smallest car is just $30, but w/ taxes and fees, comes to $46/day). They are also now offering room service from the restaurant and in-room delivery of grocery items from the Bayview market for 15% service charge.
Favorite St. Martin spots – we spent most our time (a week) on a 10-person Tradewinds catamaran which was absolutely the highlight of our trip (thanks Donald & Audrey!), but we’d also recommend: (1) Cupecoy beach – gorgeous little cove beaches at the bottom of the cliffs – check out “Danny’s Beach Bar” – Danny rents beach chairs and sells beer and rum punch from the back of his truck – he claims it’s the “best rum punch on the island” and I’d definitely rate it in the top 3 (note that clothing is optional on Cupecoy, and when we were there, most opted not, especially the men); (2) the Lolos at Grand Case – amazing fresh grilled food, for super reasonable prices – at “Talk of the Town” we had ribs for $4, snapper for $8 and creole shrimp for $6 – and each came w/ a side – the coleslaw and curry rice and beans were wonderful; (3) Buccaneer Beach Bar by Simpson Bay – cool beach bar, lounge chairs on the sand, best rum punch on the island for just $3 all the time (always freshly made – Wanda’s own recipe – never pre-made mixes), and great fresh food – the blackend mahi mahi ceasar salad was amazing (just $14); (4) Sunset Beach Bar – pretty cool to watch the planes take off and land right over head, plus they’re fried shrimp are good, and pizza was wonderful – woodfire oven style, w/ great crust, sauce, cheese, etc. – just $11-15 each; (5) Peg Leg Pub on Friday nights w/ live music and dancing (if you decide to get up and dance – we had a great time; (6) ferry/sail to St. Barts – what a cool, beautiful island, w/ quaint shops, restaurants, bars (check out Le Select, which Jimmy Buffet dedicated “Cheeseburger in Paradise” to) – you can see why the rich and famous love this island.
Since I think it’s helpful when reviewers compare resorts, our first night, we stayed at the Belair Beach Hotel, right next to the Divi, and while it shares the same bay and was a comfortable place to stay, the Divi is in a totally different league – from what I’ve seen, I think Divi is the nicest timeshare resort on St. Martin.
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- Also Known As:
- Divi Little Bay Beach Hotel Philipsburg
- St Maarten Divi Little Bay
- Divi Little Bay Resort
- Divi Little Bay Beach Resort St Maarten
- Hotel Divi Little Bay Beach
- Divi Little Bay Beach Resort St Martin / St Maarten/Philipsburg