I titled this review "sorry this is our first time" because if you were not a returning guest, your treatment by most staff members were very different. We found out that most guests have been coming to this location for many years so the staff knew them and were very attentive which was obvious to our group.
This was an eight day seven night girlfriend all-inclusive getaway and our first time to St. Maarten . Upon arrival, we were given a cold wet towel to help cool off but did not receive a welcome drink. We noticed later some guest received the drink along with their towel. I was told later by hotel manager every guest should have received the same welcome, however he could not explain why it didn't happen when we arrived.
We had two rooms, in one room we received two complimentary bottles of alcohol, the other room did not. When we mentioned it to the front desk, we were told it should have been three bottles in each room. The correction was made in both rooms two days later. Nice touch also had refrigerator with sodas,beer and water.
Complained about the air conditioner in one room. Maintenance would correct it but by the next day it would be on the fritz again.
CONS: One major complaint was garbage cans around the beach area were not emptied on a regular bases. All cans overflowed and it took days and several complaints before they were emptied.
-Staff needs more training on customer service - hardly ever greeted with a good morning or an hello. This went all the way up to some of the management staff.
-Restaurant needs more versatility in the menu since its the only sit down restaurant at the resort. After you dine there once or twice during your stay, you basically had the entire menu selection.
-Online it states the hotel has wifi but it fails to mention that it costs $16 a day with no guarantee that it will work.
-Need more "Animators" - Denroy was trying to run an activity and hand out and collect towels all at the same time.
-Overall appeared to be understaffed
-Security needs to be more diligent with controlling guests that have obviously had to much to drink. A guest became obnoxious during a couple of the evening activities. (Reggae band set drunken guest kept grabbing the mic trying to sing initially thought it was karaoke with live band).
-Service elevator was broken most of our stay.
People to remember:
-Sharon, manager of the Maho resort restaurants however she was filling in at this resort was very helpful. Gave us an excellent tour of the Sonesta Maho.
-Rosa, Gregory,and Olga of the front desk were very helpful
Nigel, Maritza and Michael the bartenders
Kevin and Denroy, Animators
Edrick, Kay- Ann, Jerry and Patricia
Overall the stay was okay resort is going through a transition with its management staff. They have aggressive changes they wish to make which will probably take a few years to see results. Once it receives a facelift and more customer service training this may be the four or five star resort the management is striving for. Hopefully with the renovations, a spa as nice as the spa at Maho will be added.
St. Maarten is a nice island I would go back, however I would not stay at this resort.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa is a serene Caribbean haven - and St. Maarten’s premier, limitless all-inclusive, adults-only resort. Delivering a new level of sophistication and style, the elegant destination hotel is situated on a mile-long white-sand beach, overlooking Great Bay and the sparkling sea. With endless amenities and personalized service, the resort invites guests to unwind at three swimming pools, four restaurants, four bars, a spa and the Golden Casino for the ultimate vacation experience complimented by stellar service. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort And Casino
- Sonesta Great Bay Beach Hotel Philipsburg
- St Martin Great Bay Hotel
- Sonesta Philipsburg
- Great Bay Beach Hotel
- Philipsburg Sonesta
- St Maarten Great Bay Hotel
- Hotel Sonesta Great Bay Beach
- Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa St. Maarten-St. Martin/Philipsburg