I traded in to this resort through Interval only 3 weeks ahead of time. I chose the resort based on availability but also because I was coming to the island, in part, for a medical conference which just so happened to be offered at this hotel.
I did my research ahead of time and knew what buildings had been renovated and had not but location was my priority. I emailed the resort a couple of weeks ahead of time after receiving notice from Interval that I had been placed in the B buidling (up on the hill) and requested to be placed in either the Marina or Flamboyant buildings. One of the managers emailed me back and advised that he would look in to the inventory and see if the change would be possible. A couple of days before our arrival I was notified that we were placed in the Marina building.
After a long early morning flight, and picking up our rental car from Travel rent a car (also higly recommend), we arrived at the resort at about 3:45. We were told that the room was just about ready and by the time we had parked and got our luggage out, the room was done. We were greeted by a bottle of wine and a personal note welcoming us, from the manager that I had contacted as well as a map of the resort with very specific instructions of how to get the room that held my conference. Although not updated, the one bedroom unit was very large, and more than accomodating. My only issues with the room is that it did not have a balcony... and I had hoped to sit out on the balcony and enjoy the view. I decided to really push my luck and called the front desk to ask if there were any units available with a balcony and they immediately sent up an employee who transported us by van to view another unit in order to see if that was up to par.
This unit was in the Flamboyant building which is beach front, and by beach front, I mean VERY close to the beach :) We could not have been happier. The unit was once again not updated, but really, do you need granite countertops? You are at the beach, how much time do you truly spend in your room?? Wicker furniture and tile floors are not a bad thing. The appliances were more than adequate with full fridge, dishwasher, microwave, oven, and perhaps most important... a blender.
After approving the unit, the employee went back to the old unit and transported all of our luggage to the new one while my husband moved the car to a very convenient spot right in front of the unit.
Honestly, I can not say enough about the service I received. A couple of days later, the manager even stopped by personally, to check to make sure our stay was going well.
As for the resort itself, the grounds were spotless, the beach was nice, and the pool by the villa was quiet and warm. The gym was spectacular and although there was a fee, 55$/week/couple, my husband and I used it daily and would have even paid more to use the facility if we were staying at a neighboring resort. The Red Piano bar, located directly across the parking lot from our unit was a last stop for us nightly and was a lot of fun. Bon Appetit and Alexander's Kitchen were great as well. Buccaneer Beach bar is literally located next door to the resort and there are several other great restaurants and bars within walking distance in the Simpson Bay area, our favorite was Pizza Galley, but we also enjoyed Lees and Pineapple Pete's. There is a well stocked grocery store at the bottom of the hill that we used not only to stock the kitchen for breakfast, lunches, and snacks, but it was also convenient to grab necesseties throughout the week we were there.
We did rent a car and explored most of the island, including, Happy Bay, Friar's Bay, Bay Rouge, Mullet Bay, Maho, Orient Bay, Pinel Island, and Dawn Beach. We also went to Harmony Nights and had an awesome dinner at La Villa in Grand Case and on another day shopped and took a ferry from Marigot in order to spend a day in Anguilla. I really don't feel like we could have picked a more central location or a resort that would have fit our needs as well.
If I had to have one complaint, my only one would be that the guy who pulled out lounge chairs and did towel exchanges on the beach was not the nicest person in the world but that is a very minor complaint when you look at the numerous other positives.
I have been exploring the Caribbean for several years and although I have had many great travel experiences, this is the first time I have found the need to post a review, simply because I feel that they deserve a better rating than many of the other traveler's have given them.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled on a hillside overlooking Simpson Bay, one of the most popular spots on St. Maarten, Simpson Bay Resort & Marina is a peaceful Mediterranean-style holiday village offering comfortable suites and all the services guests could possibly need during their Caribbean vacation. With a sheltered private beach, five pools and colorful gardens full of bougainvillea, hibiscus and Allamanda, Simpson Bay Resort & Marina is a captivating island hideaway where you can enjoy the best family vacation ever. A varied activity program, tennis courts, a spa, water sports, dining and evening entertainment make it a favorite with visitors of all ages. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Simpson Bay Resort & Marina Hotel Simpson Bay
- Simpson Bay Resort And Marina
- Simpson Bay Resort & Marina St. Maarten-St. Martin