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“St Maarten for the first time. May 5-19th”

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Royal Palm Beach Resort
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Cole Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 28, 2013

I've been to many caribbean islands...If you've never been to the caribbean it's really like the ghetto in paradise so don't expect much of the towns and streets...I bothers some folks I COULD CARE LESS! Snorkeling, sunnin', swimming in the ocean every day...!
We usually go to the sleepier islands BUT I LOVED St. Maarten...Lots to do!! and MANY different beaches to go for the day...!!! The simpson bay area seems to be the best centrally located spot for me...There's absolutely nothing in Phillipsburg at night...nothing but one nice big hotel open at night...
Much better to rent a car, you only need a small one at $9.50 a gal.,oh cash only for gasoline, this way you can freely go to the french side or dutch side "which i highly recommend going to both sides..."
A Tip on the french side (takes 20mins to drive to) in Grand Case you can eat cheap $12 chicken and ribs at two places side by side called LoLo's (don't know their rest., names) towards the northern end of the strip...there at Calmos Cafe they have hot salsa band on thurs and Jazz trio on sundays...great!!! and nice small beach type restaurant informal or formal dress...great food $17-29.
I picked up a frommer's guide of st maarten/anguilla and st barts and read everything...Most restaurants take credit cards except the nice little informal places that i loved too besides the regular restaurants...(in simpson bay area)Lee's, pineapples pete's, the boathouse, the yacht club rest, skipjacks, greenhouse... and little place above bon petite's. One of the best meals i had was from the grand marche grocery store which was a stewed chicken in a brownish sauce with rice/peas and cabbage for $9!!!
I stayed at the Flamingo resort the first week, excellent condo, nice beach/pool in a little point called Pelican point and THE SECOND WEEK I STAYED AT THE ROYAL PALM BEACH RESORT which was also very nice but not quite as good of a beach but both places are affiliated with each other so you can go back and forth...the 3rd week was in an area called Point Blanche in a quaint villa on a mountain which was not quite the scale of the resorts but fine for me BUT near Phillipsburg so in nowhere's ville!!!! Now phillipsburg in the day is packed and everything is open with a nice boardwalk and very nice beach but nothing at night...!!! It's about a 16-20min drive if that to Simpson bay area...the good thing about a condo is breakfast in and pack a lunch and then dinner out or in....
Alot of the boat trips(snorkeling/lunch...) leave from simpson bay! ferry to St Barts and not sure about the ferry to Anguilla which i HIGHLY RECOMMEND BOTH if it's in your budget!
I highly recommend taking both a sailboat charter snokeling trip on either the Aboda thru Aqua Mania or bluebeard $85-95 with lunch, and taking a ferry to Anguilla for the day and St Barts for the day....Next time i'm going to stay 3 days in St Barts....There's the caribbean and then there's st barts...but you pay for it too, now remember it's a very sleepy island and all french no american credit cards and the most the businesses close from 1-3pm everyday and there's only two gas stations on the whole small island...
I went alot to the town of Maho near the airport after dinner where the Italian owned resort the Sonnesta is (actually this italian guy owes just about the whole little town plus the Casino Royale. Only 7mins from simpson bayJust a cool vibe on this main street with the nicest early bar 8pm-1am in the entire caribbean The Sky Beach which is a huge bar/lounge on top of the roof there in Maho set up like your at the beach with sand, luxury couches and chairs, fire torches, great sound system, cool music and no cover... I didn't go to any of the night club but they are just too late for me open at 11 but nobody's in them until 1am and i'm not interested in staying up all night and waste a beach day, plus $10-15 cover charge...
...and of course Sunset beach bar in Maho at the airport where the planes come very very close when landing and taking off is quite an experience...!!! I had a nice barbecue chicken late lunch for i think $12-14...
I met alot of people there from US, canada, holland, cech repub., france, whales, and there...!!! and Look forward to going back soon, very soon i hope....

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled solo
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4  Thank ralphpacejr1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
diamondresorts, Manager at Royal Palm Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2013

Thank you for your extremely detailed review! WOW. We appreciate the time you took to give an honest account of your experience. Your high rankings for our location, sleep quality and cleanliness are greatly appreciated and will be shared with our team. We thank you for sharing that as there are a multitude of exciting options available in the immediate area and hope to welcome you back soon!

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581 - 587 of 965 reviews

Reviewed May 27, 2013

We stayed at the Royal Palm this past week as a family of 5 (me and my spouse, my brother and his spouse, and my father). We enjoyed the hotel in general. The location is great, with their own private beach and swimming area and a great view of Simpson Bay. The room was comfortable enough; we were happy to have a sunny breakfast nook and a small balcony. It was rainy for a few days, so the big flat screen TVs were nice for movie nights.

My one issue with this hotel was the service. The front desk staff were very friendly, but not at all helpful or efficient. They would promise to follow through on requests (for example, to contact housekeeping for us, or to bring my lost suitcase to the room once the airport delivered it to the hotel), but we would have to contact them several more times or take matters into our own hands to get anything done. Service issues usually do not bother me much, but it was like pulling teeth to get even basic requests fulfilled at the Royal Palm. Plus, they always seemed to be out of clean towels. For a hotel on a beach, this is problematic.

The best perk of this hotel, for me, was the gym. They have the largest and most well-stocked fitness center that I have ever seen at a hotel/resort, and I am a fitness nut who travels a heck of a lot. They have nearly every type of machine, weights, or fitness gadget you could ever want. My only regret is that I did not have more time to go to the gym during my vacation....it would have helped offset the decadent meals!

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank GotMilkanie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 16, 2013

The Royal Palm was perfect. Great location to everything. The rooms are clean, big and have a great view. The staff is friendly and helpful. We really loved karaoke night! Morning water aerobics was a good way to loose the guilt from all the delicious food we consumed here. I Love St Maarten!

  • Stayed: May 2013
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4  Thank deb m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 16, 2013

The dutch side is the best side of the island in terms of beaches, activities, fun, entertainment, cleanliness. This hotel was great. The room was nicer than we could have imagined and the bed was very comfortable. Everything you need is in the room: shampoo, iron, blender, oven, utensils, etc. The restaurant has good food selections and the bar has reasonably priced, good drinks. The beach is nice and tranquil at the hotel and there are people that offer you beach massages for really cheap! The hotel front desk were very nice and accomodating.

We stayed on the french side before coming here and were disappointed at how ghetto it was. There were abandoned buildings, graffiti everywhere, hoboes walking around and seemed generally unsafe. Not so on the dutch side. The streets were clean, no graffiti or board ups, lots to do, nicer beaches. Mullett Bay was by far my favorite beach. The water is so turquoise and tranquil. Maho beach was beautiful also. There's plenty of parking everywhere and it is overall a great time.

This hotel is in a great centralized location for those who are looking to have fun on vacation. If you want to do nothing and be bored, then stay on the french side or in Phillipsburg.

Simpson Bay is the best place for those looking to go clubbing and have fun at night. We easily were able to travel to all sides of the island depending on what we wanted but all nightlife was pretty much around the simpson, maho bay area. I will definitely be back.

Room Tip: all rooms are nice
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank MarylandGreatness
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
diamondresorts, Manager at Royal Palm Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded May 19, 2013

We are delighted to learn that you had such a pleasant time here with us and enjoyed every minute of your stay at Royal Palm Beach Club Resort! Reading that we have exceeded your expectations is the best compliment we could ask for and we are grateful to you for your words of appreciation! We hope this is just one of many more of your visits yet to come and we are looking forward to seeing you again!

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Reviewed May 13, 2013

I have been coming here for over 10 years and there looks like a concerted effort to make this place better than in the past. New appliances and kitchen makeover was very nice. Hurray for non-stick pans after years without them. Plenty of towels, pillows, and linens. The unit was very clean in every respect. One big improvement was the pressure in the shower. I loved that part.

We stayed in a 2 bedroom (having stayed in 2, 3 bedroom units before). The master is on the water with excellent views. With the design of the resort (2 wings), you will likely walk a little to reach your room. We were on the first floor for easy beach access but I prefer the higher floors for the view and private balcony. Three bedroom units are even better with 2 waterfront masters and a nice end deck. We were using a Diamond Resorts timeshare points redemption and every reservation detail was covered.

The staff was very pleasant and always seeking to assist. All of the onsite amenities were well kept with a cleaner each and trimmed plants. The location is great to walk to any number of dining places in less than 5 minutes. As stated, we have been visiting for years and like the easy walk to a variety of dining choices and levels - seafood, bbq, pizza, pub, etc.

The onsite car rental is Hertz which, after many years and experiences, is the best that I have tried with clean cars, free GPS, and professional staff. Almost all activities can be arranged at the next desk (excursions, et al).

We only had one issue -- check-in is at 4:00, we are arrived at 4:30, cleaning was not completed until 6:00. However, it was clean!

Room Tip: Three bedrooms if you can get them (limited). Also, try to get a room on the canal side where there...
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank oldstocks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 6, 2013

Tired and old feel to the unit with a hard bed and a shower that made me want to wear shower shoes. The kitchen, however, did have nice new Cuisnart appliances. And the resort staff was very nice. The beach is very nice and clean and the pool/bar area is pleasant.

Depends what your idea of a vacation is.

My expectations were set too high for this place. As a "Diamond Resort" and Interval "Select Resort", I was expecting more. For me, roughing it is a 3 star hotel, and I felt like a 3 star would be an upgrade.

Also, just a note: Simpson Bay area is a busy area with lots of restaurants, bars and casinos within walking distance. I preferred the quiet resort feel of Oyster Bay area. Again, depends on what your idea of a vacation is.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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5  Thank jptravels2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
diamondresorts, Manager at Royal Palm Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded May 9, 2013

We regret if we have failed to impress you on this occasion and we would like to assure you that this is not the usual standard of service we are offering here at Royal Palm Beach Club Resort. It is very important to us to deliver guest satisfaction at all times and we would like to assure you that all issues mentioned by you will be addressed with our personnel – please accept our apologies for any inconvenience you may have experienced. We sincerely hope that we will have an opportunity to welcome you again and offer you an excellent stay; we wish all the best on your future travels.

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Reviewed May 3, 2013

We were very happy with our 2 bedroom 2 bath condo. The view of of the ocean was great! The condo was in a good location, near restaurants, shopping, car rentals and the airport. The restaurant on the property had good food and friendly wait staff. We enjoyed our stay, just wish we could have stayed longer.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank Frank534
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Royal Palm Beach Resort

Address: 115 Welfare Road, Cole Bay 3035, St Martin / St Maarten
Location: Caribbean > St Martin / St Maarten > Sint Maarten > Cole Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Cole Bay
Price Range: $150 - $350 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Royal Palm Beach Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 140
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Also Known As:
Royal Palm Beach Hotel Simpson Bay
Royal Palm St Maarten
Royal Palm Beach Club St Maarten

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