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“can't wait to return”

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Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa
Ranked #3 of 12 Hotels in Philipsburg
Certificate of Excellence
Hamilton, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“can't wait to return”
Reviewed October 21, 2013

Great Bay is scheduled to re open October 24th.We will be arriving for our 5th trip to the hotel.Beautiful beach,great location and wonderful staff.The perfect combination for a great vacation.We look forward to seeing good friends,Vicky at the front desk,our favorite bellman Edrick,Denroy from activities,Sonia(house keeping manager) Michael at the bar who has been there since our first visit and Mr.Bourne hotel manager.Can't wait to see the renovations.See you all on October 24th

Room Tip: ocean front 4th floor and up,what a view
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank charlotte0254
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hungarian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
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English first
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
257 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
Reviewed October 6, 2013

St. Maarten is a beautiful island with plenty of action and beautiful beaches. The resort itself was just okay. We stayed in the mountain view room, which really looked at the parking lot. The room was clean but had an indefinite funky smell in the bathroom. The beach on the property was nice. Small pools though. Food options were bland and for an all inclusive resort, one could not find drinks after midnight. I don't recall any entertainment either. I am in my '30's and I would say the average age at the resort was 50 and up. It would have been better if there was a shuttle service to the Maho Beach resort. We went to the the Maho Beach resort and the pools were better there but it had no beach but closer to the casinos and airport. Also the average age at the Maho Beach was 70 and up. At times, it looked like an assisted living facility. There was also this really obnoxious group of Italians visiting from Canada (CHIN group) that made me grateful I was at the Great Bay rather than Maho. We only stayed here for a few days and for a few days this place is fine but do not expect 5 star all inclusive quality, this is more like 2 or 3 stars. I appreciate the all inclusive package and the access to both resorts but there needs to be more variety of food, drinks, and entertainment to give this place a higher rating.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Sarc1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
Level Contributor
32 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
Reviewed September 28, 2013

Stayed here couple of years ago with my adult son his wife and my granddaughter.

The buffet restaurant was not terribly exiting and there was not a huge selection of food to be had. Service was spotty and the staff were not that friendly. The Italian a la carte was good and so were the servers. The BBQ around the pool was a nice treat one evening during our week stay. There are simply no other all inclusive choices other than the two Sonesta hotels in St. Maarten so I really don't think they care about serviice or their reputation.

The beach was not good for small children as the drop off was quite sharp and you were in deep water very fast.

The hotel is within walking distance to all the stores in Philipsburg so that was nice.

We rented a car and drove to several beaches on the French side. Beaches there are calmer and more suitable for our grandaughter. If you do rent a car be sure to go to Pinel island it is a nature reserve and very beautiful with a gorgeous beach. Many Iguana's hang out at the back of the restaurant and they are a sight to see all sizes and colours. It is an easy ride on the bus to the French side and cheap couple of dollars.

Next time I come to this island maybe we will rent a villa.

Room Tip: You have to pay extra to have ocean view
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank ufo_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed September 23, 2013

My wife and I celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary, her B-day & our retirement there in June 2013. During our stay there we had to contact the front desk because of air conditioner was discharging water which made the marble floor very slippery. After several calls to the desk, we had to use towels to prevent us from falling. They attempt to repair and paint over the problem to no avail. Well my wife slipped one night going to the bathroom. She fell back on her elbows to avoid hitting her head we rush her to the hospital, x-rays,meds. We accumulated expenses over $300 and was told to submit the bills. As of today we have not rec'd a dime. Pack your flippers.
James & Renee' F

Room Tip: Ocean view was nice but the maintenance of their equipment was lacking. The casino's A/C was not...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Chavah2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Holland, New York
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed September 12, 2013

We went there is august Had a great time, The Staff was friendly and helpful, food was good, drinks were good, the pool and beach area are just beautiful ,,Loved our room and view.. The location was the best , just a short walk down the beach and your downtown!! the hotel could use some updating , but the other than that, we would definitely stay here again.. !!

Room Tip: we stayed on the bottom floor, facing ocean. what a view!!
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank chas5457
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pilot, Virginia
Level Contributor
44 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed September 10, 2013

This resort focuses on food, beverage, nicotine addiction and entertainment. I suppose in that regard they are a success. We were looking for something different. We actually enjoy taking the time to prepare our own meals when we are on vacation. It was a little difficult with a refrigerator that had trouble cooling below 60 degrees F. Maintenance attempted a repair without success. My guess is that the same fridge is still in that room and guests' food is still spoiling in it. Our biggest gripe was internet access. That was the one stipulation we insisted on when we booked the unit for two weeks and we were OK with a charge for this service. We actually connected on a couple of occasions for about 5 minutes. WiFi was a little better in the lobby if only we had brought a gas mask to deal with 2nd hand smoke. When our maid heard of our WiFi problems she immediately said, "I don't know why they put you in this room and charged you for internet since they have never had access in this room."
Parking is horrible. The final straw was having our rental car hit by an employee's car. Of course they denied it but the evidence was irrefutable. Glad I got zero deductable insurance. Much of the staff has serious attitude issues. My guess is they are not paid well. Management caters to the masses and would prefer to keep guests in an alcoholic stupor and hope they ignore the problems.
On the plus side the AC worked great. The pools were lovely. The resort is located on a beautiful bay within walking distance of the major shopping district. Our room was quiet. We enjoyed mornings on the beach before the hungover nicotine addicts stumbled out of bed. It would be a simple matter to designate an upwind area of the beach for non-smokers. The management would hear nothing of it. We enjoyed visiting other areas of St. Maarten. We barely tolerated our stay at Sonesta.

Room Tip: If internet access is important to you ask which rooms have the best connection before you pay for t...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Fred J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lille, France
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed September 9, 2013

I stayed in Sonesta great bay and had the great chance to meet Vicky at the reception and Michael at the bar. Thanks to them, I had a superb stay! Michael will advise you the best drink you could except for your evening! Make sure you check out the karaoke night!

Room Tip: Ocean view
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
3 Thank Morgiane H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa

Property: Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa
Address: 19 Little Bay Road, Philipsburg, St. Maarten-St. Martin
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St. Maarten-St. Martin > Sint Maarten > Philipsburg
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Philipsburg
#3 Family Hotel in Philipsburg
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Philipsburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 257
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

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