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“But for the rats in the room, it would have been a better stay”
Review of Alamanda Resort

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Alamanda Resort
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Orient Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Leesburg, VA
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“But for the rats in the room, it would have been a better stay”
Reviewed 23 April 2014

Stayed at the Alamanda Resort in mid-April based on generally favorable reviews and a moderate price tag. Overall I enjoyed the stay as best I could. The Alamanda is not a resort. It’s an attractive two story concrete walled and wood roof beach hotel, a little frayed inside, but with two bedrooms, a tired but working refrigerator, microwave, and hotplate it was all we needed. There are no ocean view rooms, but the two chairs on the balcony, sound of the surf, and refreshing breeze are quite relaxing. The continental breakfast was included, with fresh fruit, juice, hot coffee, and bread and croissants served by a very pleasant waiter. Beach chairs and umbrella are set up by staff in advance and are a three minute walk to the shore. Very relaxing there, too. Beach bar/restaurant was very pricey but convenient. Beach towels provided by the desk. The water is ridiculously blue, the waves are non-threatening, and the beach is fine sand and gently sloping into the water – great for kids as one need not worry about them getting knocked around while we read or dozed in the chairs. Jet ski, parasail, paddle boards and wind surfing is available every couple of hundred yards along the Orient Bay beach for a fee. Just outside the hotel is a pedestrian street with six or eight very nice but not cheap restaurants – French, Italian, Thai, and what not. I had a theory they all use one kitchen in the back. They are moderately but not inappropriately noisy in the early evening and are just outside some room windows, although they close at 1030pm and were never a problem for us. A half block away is a small supermarket (called “Casino”) that has all the odds and ends one needs very reasonably priced. The resort is impossible to find with a GPS and there are no signs from the main road. Once in the Orient Bay compound there are signs for the Alamanda – at every other intersection. The best way to find the place is to put the Astrolabe Restaurant in your GPS and once there, keep going to the end of the road by the beach and there will be the Alamanda.

But the rats. The first night or two at dusk we heard light scratching that sounded like it was coming from an internal wall, between our bedroom and the enclave that was our kitchenette. Thought maybe it was birds on the roof inching along gutters and didn’t worry about it. The third night there was clearly something scurrying along the internal joists and studs. Wrapped on the wall once or twice and they went away, but we were a little creeped out. From day one we had made sure all of our food was either in the fridge or sealed in bags and/or plastic containers. The fourth night we were awakened several times by scratching and scurrying and I swore I heard something shuffle through the rattan headboard. Found myself leaping out of bed every two hours with a flashlight trying to identify the culprits. The fifth night was the worst. Heard lots of noise in the kitchen cabinet under the sink and went to investigate. Opened the door as a blurry fuzzy creature vanished into the wall through the oversized hole made for the sink drainpipe to penetrate the wallboard. The trash can in the cabinet had been plundered, with a Pringles can extracted and other debris on the shelf leaving no doubt rodents breached our room. The most disgusting was that on top of the counter top, an unopened packet of oatmeal had been pilfered and probably headed for the hole when the creature hit the large metal room key and startled him and us – very sure that’s what woke me up. Informed the hotel desk the next morning, and they seemed grateful we brought it to their attention. They sent a maintenance man to spackle the hole closed after inserting some poison in the wall through the hole. I re-inspected and found a second hole under the cabinet, and they sealed that one also. The sixth night was our last so we elected not to change rooms. My wife and I have lived in the third world and were not overly freaked out. Regretted that. The entire night what sounded like several angry off rats scratched and clawed at the closed holes from inside the wall in frustration and kept us up. I checked several times and the patchwork held. We had put the trash can outside the room just in case.

The hotel staff recognized rats in the room was a problem, but more of an inconvenience to be addressed tactically than a serious customer problem. I guess in short I brought it to their attention and they fixed the hole and poisoned the intruders (must be slow killing poison?) and the problem was solved. No mention of compensation, rate reduction, come again at a discount – it was not addressed at all. So my conundrum is that had there NOT been rats in my room, I would give this hotel decent marks for being an affordable and adequate place to stay, especially when most of our time was spent on the beach or on the balcony. But there were rats in the room, and I suspect my room was not the only one they had access to, and so I would pass on staying there again. Too bad.

PS – Our departing flight was cancelled and the airline put us up in a very, very nice time share kind of resort. I waited all day for this moment. When my wife turned out our bedroom light I gently started scratching on the wall over our head board. Well, at least I thought it was funny.

Room Tip: No rooms have ocean view. That said, family room (two level) with balcony facing beach you can see b...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
10 Thank supplyguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Birmingham, Alabama
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 April 2014

I will openly admit to bias in this review, but the bias itself speaks for this lovely resort.

My wife and I have been 4 times in the past 5 years. In between we've taken other trips and even done other island resorts (Jade Mountain, e.g.) but are drawn back to Alamanda.

First of all, the beach is absolutely lovely. The room comes with access to nice chairs and friendly beach staff (Cedric and Nicholas!), has a lovely pool and perfectly nice rooms. The area is nice, and there are several restaurants in walking distance. We no longer get a car - so content to just hang out there.

I think I've come to believe though that the real charm of Alamanda is the consistency. Vincent has been the manager and the staff has largely been the same each time. It's just ... comfortable. Really, really comfortable. This trip we flew in on a Saturday and got to the resort about 3:30 p.m. ... we were literally on beach chairs by 4. We got a nice complimentary upgrade this trip, but honestly have never had an unpleasant room.

Travel is easy from Atlanta and the taxi ride is only about 25-30 at most from the airport. The continental breakfast is good and offers al a carte options if you're hungier.

I truthfully don't have anything bad to say about it. If you are looking for 5-star, ultra-modern decor or staff tripping over themselves to rub lotion on you ... this is probably not the place. But if you want a wonderfully pleasant, comfortable and reasonable stay at a gorgeous beach ... you could do far, far worse than the Alamanda.

Room Tip: We've always done well with the "Deluxe Ocean View" choice. Not ocean front ... but t...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank bkr01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
USAsalesoffice, Directeur général at Alamanda Resort, responded to this review, 11 January 2017
Thank you for posting your experience at Alamanda Resort on TripAdvisor following your stay with us.

Thank you again for your kind recommendation. We look forward to welcoming you back on your next trip in Sint-Marteen!

Best Regards,

Vincent Reymond
Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Belvidere, Illinois
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 March 2014

We spent a week there in late February. Based on our research, we were pleased with the outcome as everything was as expected - no surprises. Only 50 paces from the beach and literally around the corner from numerous restaurants. The continental breakfast included with the room fee was good and for a little extra you could add to the selection. Morning breakfast service was very friendly and al fresco. Mattresses were firm, ok for me but may not be ok for others. Ceiling fan was out of balance and noisy.
The hotel was clean, functional and quaint. At least one of the desk staff was somewhat indifferent, not impolite but not engaging at all. There was at least one morning where water was off for a few hours; this could have been a bit of an annoyance if it were our day of travel yet hotel staff had plenty of free bottled water to hand out. The shower curtain allowed overspray to the bathroom floor; nothing a couple of towels on the floor would not fix.
Our take on this stay was: with a beautiful beach, who needs an all inclusive hotel. The immediate beach was clean and nice but lounges were four or five deep and catered to the cruise ship clientele. With a little exploring in the area, quieter and more relaxed beaches can be found. Next time, we will consider Alamanda but will explore other options in the area- because we like to explore.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank John M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
boston
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 March 2014

Although we got delayed due to weather, it was worth the wait to finally get to St Martin. Our stay at Alamanda was good. The hotel staff was very welcoming and helpful and the location was fantastic given the proximity to the village and various beach bars. The room is pretty simply furnished but large, and the balcony was nice to sit on in the mornings and at night. The continental breakfast, while simple, was delicious and well-suited for our needs. Finally, the pool was also the perfect size & depth for our daughter. We enjoyed our stay here and look forward to going back.

Post the trip, I would also like to commend the manager for refunding us 1 night's stay since we were delayed and unable to get down there for our original arrival date. It shows that sometimes, a positive experience is more worthwhile than a few hundred dollars. Based on my travel experiences, few places would care for customers like this so it was worth pointing out.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank schmoofang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
USAsalesoffice, Directeur général at Alamanda Resort, responded to this review, 11 January 2017
Thank you for posting your experience at Alamanda Resort on TripAdvisor following your stay with us.

Thank you again for your kind recommendation. We look forward to welcoming you back on your next trip in Sint-Marteen!

Best Regards,

Vincent Reymond
Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North Salem, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 March 2014

I stayed at this hotel for 2 nights in February when I had business that I had to complete before moving on and meeting up with my family in Anguilla for 10 days. I did a tremendous amount of research prior to booking and thought I was getting the best I could get for the amount of money I wanted to spend and given the limited amount of time I was going to be there (my other choices required a minimum 7 night stay, unfortunately). The most positive thing I can say about this hotel is that it is very convenient to restaurants for dinner - especially since I was a female staying alone and was concerned about safety (after reading a ton of posts on the SXM forum). Literally a 2 minute walk to a number of nice bistros and other dining establishments.

The accommodations themselves leave something to be desired. Very plain Jane, although my room was very clean. I had reserved a deluxe room, which I thought would have been on the 1st floor, but they must have upgraded me to a 2nd floor room which had a sliver of a view of the sea and a direct view of the pool. The furnishings need updating, as does the bathroom and kitchenette area. The bathtub/shower is very narrow, as others have noted, and water does tend to get all over the bathroom floor, but I did like that there was a more private toilet area in the space. The linens need replacing as there were some stains and they were not as clean and crisp as they should have been. Some other reviewers mentioned that the beds were uncomfortable, but I had no trouble sleeping on the bed in my room. The furniture was sparse, but the room was spacious, with a large balcony with 2 chairs and ottomans. There should be a fan on the balcony, however, because although the privacy is nice having the wall on either side, it results in no air reaching the area. The walls in the room are very thin and you can hear everything everyone says on both sides.

There were no amenities in the room other than toiletries and a few kitchen items - no bottled water, no mini bar and with no store close by, it was inconvenient to have to walk to one of the restaurants to get a bottle of water for the room.

I had to work for most of the time I was in SXM, so I did not have an opportunity to really get to know the area. I did get out on the beach for a few hours one day and am not a fan of the Orient Bay style lounging, which is very European and not of my taste - I prefer a little more space between loungers and no one between me and the beach. I also did not like the fact that the front row was reserved for "special" guests, which in this case was for visiting cruise ship passengers! That is astonishing to me that people that are not even staying on the island or at the hotel get treated better than those paying good money to support the SXM economy in a much more significant way. The other bothersome issue at the beach were the vendors - I was asked better than 30 times in the few hours that I was there if I wanted a sarong, jewelry, a massage, whatever. It was annoying when you just want peace and quiet and a few hours to enjoy the beach. I also did not care for having to walk such a ways to actually get to the beach as the website makes it seem like the hotel is beachfront when it is really not. I will say that the beach attendant that was servicing my part of the beach was very attentive and nice.

Continental breakfast was fine, with french bread, a couple of pastries, fruit, coffee/tea and juice.

Service was just okay - the front desk staff, although pleasant when engaged, was not very enthusiastic or concerned about your satisfaction. They helped me with my luggage when I arrived but nobody offered to help me when I was clearly struggling with it on my departure.

We lost water twice while I was staying. I could not figure out why my toilet wasn't flushing and when I called the front desk they informed me that there had been a water main break somewhere close by and we would not have water for several hours. It happened again the day of my departure, so no shower before heading to the airport for my flight to Anguilla.

I had dinner at the Italian restaurant (I don't recall the name) right down the alley from the hotel and it was lovely. I had a very enjoyable experience and the service and food was very good. I did not have dinner the 2nd night because I had to work through the night in my room.

If this were my only experience in St. Maarten, I would definitely have a poor overall view of the island. But, my family and I returned at the end of our vacation in Anguilla for one more night on the island before flying back to NY and, this time, we stayed at La Samanna - yes, a big difference in price but a world of difference in quality and a much nicer beach, in my opinion. I paid almost $400/night at Alamanda and do not feel like it was good value for the money.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank momtojayandlauren
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Utica, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 March 2014

My family of 4 spent the 3rd week of Feb at Alamanda and my blood pressure is just now going back to normal! My wife, a grown son and daughter and I requested a 2BR suite ($736/nite) and were assured we would have 3 beds. When we arrived we had 2 beds. Since it was nearly midnite the front desk receptionist said he didn't know anything about a 3rd bed but called the mgr who said we could have an additional room for the nite so we would have a sufficient number of beds and we would have a rollaway brought in the next morning. After 20 minutes trying to figure how to securely lock the door with its 1900 vintage lock mechanism we settled in for the nite. It was midnite because our shuttle driver (an island native who drove visitors to their hotels) could not find the hotel! They have no signs anywhere in the vicinity pointing out the hotel despite its location within a maze of narrow winding roads. The ONLY sign is ON the hotel once you find it. So after the short nite we went to the front desk to check on the 3rd bed and met the nastiest little man this side of France. He was immediately hostile and said he had no request for a 3rd bed (which was a lie) and accused us of trying to sneak a 5rd person into the room. He then said he didn't know where a rollaway might be in the hotel so he couldn't promise us one but he would look, saying it would be a terrible chore because he didn't want to bother people in their rooms. And, oh by the way we are going to charge you for the additional room! I clearly informed him that that would happen only after I was 6 feet under. When I said it was imperative we get the rollaway as my adult son and daughter were not about to sleep together he replied "Oh you are from the US, we do things differently down here."!!! Ultimately we got the bed and we were not charged for the extra room but the damage was done and the proverbial first impression was totally negative. Upon checking the room we discovered (in totally UNRESORT-like manner) the following: a shower but no shower curtain, an iron but no ironing board. one phone but no message capacity, a TV that didn't work for 3 days, both TVs so small you needed your binoculars to see the screen, no clock, only 2 electrical outlets total with NONE in the bathroom, an ancient bathtub so narrow that you couldn't stand facing the shower, so high that you needed a step-ladder to get in, paint chipped cabinets, no vending machines, no ATM, a snack bar that served breakfast but closed for the day at 10:30 a.m., a kitchenette but no grocery store anywhere around to buy anything, no fitness room, etc., etc. You get the idea - completely outdated an ZERO amenities! Besides our "pleasant" welcome the other issue with management was the day there was to be no water from 8-5. I know that the island as a whole has water issues but the way the "resort" handled it was cavalier at best. Our warning the day before was for the front desk person to warn everyone if he saw them leaving for dinner. No phone message (see "phone" above), no printed notice in the rooms or posted in public areas. Just random "hope we catch you"! At dinner we discussed the problems associated with no water for a day - like washing, brushing and flushing - so upon our return we asked about what accommodations the hotel was going to make for its guests. "Hmmm, good question. We hadn't thought about that. Why don't you just fill your bathtub and then you can use a bucket to take what water you need." Very resort-like, n'est-ce pas? First we didn't happen to think to pack a bucket and second, no one was really anxious to brush their teeth with bath water. No problem there, because after we filled our tub as suggested the water all leaked out of the tub anyway!!! The original mechanical stopper was broken and missing and the replacement rubber stopper didn't stop anything!! The one accommodation was ONE GALLON of fresh water delivered about noon. The one really pleasant aspect was the beach - very close and beautiful as long as you didn't mind sitting in the 4th or 5th row behind all the cruisers who came for the day and got the view of the ocean.
Such was our week. We travel a great deal to many distant locales and expect on foreign soil there to be cultural differences, but this was NO RESORT in any country and nastiness and hostility are not among our expectations when we pay top dollar for our stay. Speaking of "stay", STAY away from here. They have a beautiful location on the beach but do NOTHING to make their guests feel welcome or cared for. Once they have your money, you are on your own.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank 491Ray2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Argentina
Level Contributor
58 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 March 2014

We only stayed for one night. Arriving at almost 11 at night we had a hard time finding anything to eat - the hotel has nothing. They only serve breakfast in the morning and that´s it. Fortunately, around the hotel there were 2 or 3 restaurants and we were fortunate enough to find one that served us some ham, cheese, paté and bread.
The hotel is quite basic - empty minibar, no coffee machine, no room service. It is quite close to the beach which looked nice. We were only there for one night prior to a cruise.
Very difficult to find !! The taxi from the airport drove the other way (we´d been to St. Martin before and knew the way) and when I asked him, the driver in a very rude way told me that he had to put gas on the car and that I could not tell him how to use his car. Unfortunately, I did not take note of his license plate !! But the worst part is that he filled the gas tank without even bothering to turn the motor off !!!! I was in no mood to further argue with this man - the rest of us did not speak English or French well enough !! Very frightening experience ! After about an hour´s ride in solitary roads, we finally got to the Alamanda - no one came to get our luggage, as stated no possibility of any food - very basic room, the air conditioner barely cooled, horrible sheets and pillows - did not like it at all !!! And the rate was terriby expensive for what the hotel offers !!

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank rygsa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Alamanda Resort

Property: Alamanda Resort
Address: Baie Orientale (Orient Beach), Orient Bay 97071, St. Maarten-St. Martin
Region: Caribbean > St. Maarten-St. Martin > Saint-Martin > Orient Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Orient Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Alamanda Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 42
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Alamanda Resort is situated on Orient Beach, the largest and most animated beach on St. Martin. Small in scale with its 42 deluxe Oceanfront rooms and suites, you'll vacation in style at Alamanda, St Martin's newest and most intimate full service hotel. The charming restaurant opens daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and hotel guests have charging privileges at 6 beachside restaurants serving French, Spanish or American cuisine. Multilingual staff, daily maid service, room service, 3000 sq ft convention center along with fax and internet facilities. If you are looking to relax, where better than poolside in fresh water pool, sunning in the patio or sipping a drink to the poolside bar lush tropical garden? ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Alamanda Hotel Orient Bay

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