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“very disappointing”
Review of Esmeralda Resort

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Esmeralda Resort
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Orient Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 15 April 2014

room consisted of double bed , 1 small table , 2 wooden chairs and an addition wooden slat back chair.... when we requested additional furniture , a comfortable chair or 2 for reading , we were rudely told that this was all the furniture any of the rooms had... finally sent over to small wooden dining chairs where you could sit straight and stare out the window of the room and see the ugly completely unwelcoming pool and lounge chairs, plastic with no pads or towels to make them comfortable for poolside relaxing. Because of the wind ,no umbrellas were provided and for that matter there was nothing to provide shade from the sun at all.beach towels were not left in the room but were obtained by walking to the reception area , where you had to turn in your 2 beach towels from the prior day in order to receive 2 beach towels for the current. bathroom, while clean only had 2 bath towels , 2 hand towels and 2 wash cloths... naturally there was no turn down service in the evening so one had to make due with damp bath towels the next morning.

i booked this hotel because it offered a beach front room .... no such thing... what we were given was an ocean view room where the bushes were so high that one could not see the ocean at all.

the hotel is on the windward side of saint martin , so the constant wind made the ocean rough and unwelcoming and the beach unbearable because beach umbrellas would topple over.

we stayed for 2 of the 6 nights we had reserved and moved to a much more comfortable hotel on the other side of the island, with a beautiful beach and upgraded 1 bedroom suite and all the beauty and generosity one would expect from a first rate hotel and speaking of rates, the esmeralda was approximately $100.00 less than the rate of the new hotel ..... what a rip off !!

Room Tip: do not stay at this hotel in any room
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Natalie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 12 April 2014

We decided to try the Restaurant L'Astrolabe based on what we read in the tourist magazines that it is a gastronomic restaurant. It was a far cry from that. I had the Surf and Turf which was a filet mignon and one half of a lobster tail. The piece filet mignon was small and overcooked. The vegetable consisted of 2 small fried cone shaped wraps with a mix of thinly sliced vegetables that tasted just like eating a raw red pepper. No other flavor than that. There was a small cup of dipping sauce for the meat that was not good. And to help fill the look of the small portions on the plate was a large cup of olives. My wife ordered the Carpaccio that we both couldn't eat because of the taste, and the Sea delight appetizer that was mediocre. It was $115 wasted on a meal that was everything but a gastronomic experience.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
1  Thank Depiloubica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 April 2014 via mobile

Chris gave a great orientation to the room and resort. Had a deluxe room (457). Very roomy and kept very clean by the maid/housekeeping staff. Next door to reception, but very quiet day and night. Best bed ever found anywhere, super comfortable. Breakfast at Astrolabe across the drive was spot on. Short stroll down to the beach for our chairs and umbrella. Great service by Beach Boys Johann and Tony. Good food at Coco's too. Dinner at Astrolabe was exceptional - maybe too much in quantity.
Almost to good to believe visit. Heading back next year to see if it was real.

Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank Bojeep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 March 2014

At the front desk, Yolanda was very helpful - she recommended the lolo (Sky's the Limit) we ate at in Grand Case. Leo was as helpful as he could be - giving us a 2 for 1 on the internet access. The car rental from the lobby worked out to be the most reasonable we could find, despite previous reviews. The hotel "boutique" was tiny - but it did the job as the nearest shopping was quite a distance away. Room was lovely big and clean. The TV is in room is tiny though - a computer monitor, really. The bathrooms - super clean and tropical style - you can even slide them open and bathe al fresco - screened by plants and a privacy fence. We loved the almost-private pool.

Coco Beach is the only beach shack that really honours the sign-it-to-your-room arrangement. Waikiki does as well, but not Bikini. Coco though, went above and beyond, quality beach chairs and 'brellas, great pizzas, drinks and superb tuna tartare.

The included breakfast service at L'Astrolabe was excellent, with fresh pastries and good coffee. The rest of it is pretty ordinary. (Have the fruit punch juice - the other one is, well, watery.) The a la carte breakfast is solid - even good. The lobster dinner is amazing - expensive but worth every penny. Every course deserves superlatives. Will post separate food reviews for SXM.

BTW - keep in mind that nothing is cheaper in SXM - it costs the same as Canada.

Would I go back to Esmeralda? Yup. Any time. Totally reliable. Especially as we bought it on an Expedia for TD Air Canada Vacation.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Gavin B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 March 2014

First time to St.Marteen (the French Side, where Esmeralda is located) and St. Martin (the Dutch side & where the airport is located). We were excited to visit, spend time on the beach, relax and drink! And we got all of that at this resort. Here are a few of the Pros & Cons from this point of view.

Pros: Beach Time: You can walk to the beach very easily. If you're in the first two buildings, you can hear the ocean at night. We used our room key to buy drinks and food at Coco Beach. We were very well catered to by our beach boy (they work very hard, non-stop getting drinks, meals). If you ask for a private part of Coco beach (by the rocks) they will put up blinders so you can be completely nude (not seen on this section of the beach, but nice to see it was an option here). Drinks: Were strong if you ordered correctly. Don't get a blended drink like piñacolada. We got caipirinha's and the special of the day that they change up (both strong). Relaxing: Totally easy here. Rooms were quiet, private pools were rarely used (skinny dipping allowed). Free breakfast included and it was average - good enough to start your day. Free Wi-Fi in lobby. Room Key also worked at Waikiki resort - On Saturday's they have an all you can eat lobster buffet - So Worth it! And lastly, remember everyone is on vacation - strike up a convo, smile, and relax.

Cons: Rooms: Water pressure lacked and so did the hot water. We sucked it up and dealt with it. No one else had that issue that we met. Bring Bug Spray. Concierge doesn't really exists, but still friendly front desk. Taxi's are expensive - we only ventured out once since we're there to relax.

Noteworthy: Bring Euros for the French side. You'll get a better deal in the long run vs having hotel, bars, restaurant charging extra to convert. We used our AAA office that had the best rates.

Room Tip: Just because you request a certain room by the beach, know it's a crap shoot. If you're luck...
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank ohiocouple
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 March 2014

My husband and I just returned from from a stay at the Esmeralda resort (3/1-3/9) on Orient Beach in SXM... this hotel was - interesting.

This was our first time to the island other than a 1-day stop a few years ago while on a cruise. This isn't your standard hotel.. it's a set of separate buildings that each have 4/5 rooms each and each of these have their own pool. You must be reading this thinking "Wow, own pool - that's great". Sure, it would be great if it was clean! or somewhat warm? They are not heated and not cleaned. The pool area was not well maintained and the tile was cracked all around (including the glass that surrounds the pool).

Once you get past the crap furniture & 14" tv in the room.. you realize there isn't central air. There's one unit that hangs and although it maintains a cold temperature in the room - the air is literally blowing at your head when you are sleeping. I like cold air but not a consistent draft (we tried to adjust) but it only moved up 1/2 inch and then was blowing at our neck. So overall, we just slept without AC throughout the night.

Personally i could deal with everything here - the crappy "free" breakfast, the crappy room, the crappy pool - you are in St Martin after all but one thing i cant deal with is lack of concierge!!!!!!!!!! The concierge staff was just non-existent. For restaurants for which i didn't have phone numbers, i asked the concierge to make me a reservation (only 2 times out of our 8 night stay) - both times the reservations were NOT made. We get to the restaurant the first time and they clearly weren't expecting us.. the 2nd time, we asked them on Monday to make a reservation for Tuesday 8PM - the call us at 7:30 (as we are headed over to gran case) to let us know the restaurant was full as they just called to make a reservation. Ofcourse it's full - you called 30 minutes before the requested time.

The main issue here is TOWELS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This place does not want to give out ANY towels! They wanted me to keep returning until their laundry shipment arrived. I don't care when their laundry is due to arrive - it's my vacation and i don't want to keep coming back 4x a day expecting towels. I finally had enough and asked them to bring me beach towels to my room daily. That's when there was someone to request to do this. Typically - concierge was empty with no one willing to assist with directions, restaurant choices, towels, NOTHING.

Overall - the stay was OK but i would have preferred to stay somewhere with towels, water pressure, and friendlier staff. I would go back but stay at the Westin or Raddison Blu... the money you pay for this just isnt worth what you are getting because you really get nothing besides an uncomfortable bed and proximity to orient beach (best part).

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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3  Thank Julia F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2014

We just returned home from a week at Esmeralda Resort. Having done two previous stays there, we looked forward very much for this most recent stay and we were not disappointed. We did encounter two minor and repetitive glitches involving the quantity of bathroom linens we had in our room and exchanging used beach towels for new ones, but nothing that put a damper on the time we spent vacationing. We noticed some minor touch ups consisting mostly of new directional signage indicating which rooms were in which villas and also new room number plates on the doors of individual rooms within our villa.

(The problems involving the availability of beach towels and bathroom linens was a result of issues with the laundry service and not with the Esmeralda staff, who were apologetic and nice about the situation.)

We made a slight change for the better to our dining options. We had always enjoyed the breakfasts at L'Astrolabe, with lunches from the Coco Beach bar/restaurant and dinners at any of the assorted restaurants located nearby at Orient Bay Village, however, Little Italie has undergone new ownership since our last visit in January 2013 and they are no longer participating in the room charge backs. We only found that out when it came time to settle our bill and I handed them our room card. While they were gracious in allowing me to head back to the resort to retrieve my wallet, it was still a bit embarrassing to encounter this. Our other favorites, Le Piment and Tai Chi are as good as ever and yes, they do still participate in the room charge backs. There are two new French restaurants (La Voile Blanche & La Table d'Antoine) which have taken the places of a 50's inspired American grill and a non-descript steakhouse, both of which never seemed to ever have much in the way of customers sitting at their tables. Le Piment was packing them in so much so that it is now requested that reservations be made for just about all nights of the week, but especially Friday through Sunday.

We decided to try dinner at L'Astrolabe and we were very impressed with the food quality, preparation, presentation and service by the staff. From the meals we enjoyed there, L'Astrolabe ranks right up there with Le Piment and Tai Chi.

Everything else was as we expected to find it after our previous visits.....Coco Beach is still the best beach spot in Orient Bay. There's a new beach boy to serve drinks, etc... to beach goers this year. Ty has gone back home to France to attend school and his successor is a very nice young guy named Johan. Johan is backed up on his days off by Matthew, who is a waiter at a restaurant at Waikiki beach.

The grounds are in very good shape. The staff seems to have all of the familiar faces from before. It's nice to see the continuity from year to year.

The one change that we noticed, but which I forgot to ask the staff about is the fate of the tennis courts there. We walked past them a few times as we headed into Orient Bay Village and it appeared that the courts, fencing, etc... were in the process of being dismantled and removed. Not sure of what might take its place?

When we start thinking ahead to planning our 2015 winter vacation, it's going to be a tough call to see if we want to stray from our comfort zone with Esmeralda and try some place new on the island or stick with something that works. We'll see.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
2  Thank Scott55416
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Esmeralda Resort

Address: Baie Orientale | Bp 5141, Orient Bay 97071, St Martin / St Maarten
Region: Caribbean > St Martin / St Maarten > Saint-Martin > Orient Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Orient Bay
Price Range: £154 - £289 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Esmeralda Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 64
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
ESMERALDA RESORT, situated on the magnificent white sands of Orient Bay in French St. Martin offers just 65 rooms and suites spread among elegant tropical gardens in 17 villas. Esmeralda is the only four star hotel in St Martin on Orient Beach.Esmeralda's Coco Beach Bar offers beachfront lunch & cocktails. L'Astrolabe, the resort's fine dining restaurant offers French Creole and Continental cuisine. Guests receive dining privileges at 12 + restaurants in Orient Bay. Only minutes to more fine dining,shopping and entertainment. Rooms include a kitchenette, king bed, sitting area and patio. What makes this property so special is it's unique plantation style layout with only four rooms or suites per villa. For privacy, each villa has its own swimming pool and each accommodation has its own private entrance and terrace... Guests may reserve anything from a single superior or deluxe room or a generous sized suite or an entire 3 - 5 bedroom villa. Due to the way this resort in St Martin is situated on the property that is perpendicular to the beach there is limited availability in the two ocean front villas that include the Presidential Suites and deluxe oceanfront rooms. All superior and deluxe rooms include kitchenettes. Suites offer full kitchens and large living rooms. Guests enjoy the peaceful surroundings and a cordial, pampering yet unobtrusive on-site multi-lingual staff prepared to assist with any special needs. Esmeralda offers free use of beach chairs & umbrellas. Each accommodation has a fully equipped kitchenette (suites have fully equipped kitchens including dishwasher), large tile bath with hair dryer plus a 110 outlet for shavers only, color satellite TV, room safe, air conditioning with ceiling fan, daily maid service. All bedrooms have Color TV by satellite (8 channels and video system), telephone, private safe, A/C, ceiling fan, private, furnished terrace, kitchenette with micro wave, electric coffee pot, refrigerator and dishes. SUPERIOR, DELUXE AND OCEANFRONT ROOMS: King or two double beds, kitchenette. Maximum occupancy: 2 people. Superior rooms have garden view and are generally located further from the beach. Deluxe rooms are a bit larger located nearer the pool. Oceanfront rooms are located nearest the beach. SUPERIOR SUITES: Spacious living room and bedroom area with king size four poster bed and full size pull-out sofa bed plus a fully equipped kitchen. Maximum occupancy: 2 adults & 2 children. PRESIDENTIAL SUITES: Large dining and living room area with full size sofa bed, separate master bedroom with king size colonial bed, TV in living room and master bedroom, 1 1/2 baths, radio/cassette/CD player and fully equipped kitchen. Suite is oceanfront. Maximum occupancy: 4 people. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Esmeralda Hotel Orient Bay
Esmeralda Hotel Marigot
Esmeralda Resort Marigot
Esmeralda St Martin
Esmeralda Resort St Martin
Renaisance Esmeralda Resort

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