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“Wonderful place,Great staff”

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Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa
Ranked #3 of 12 Hotels in Philipsburg
Certificate of Excellence
Niagara Falls, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Wonderful place,Great staff”
Reviewed 13 July 2014

Right from the start this vacation was wonderful, check in was fast and our room was great. Our balcony overlooked the water ,it was the perfect view. Yes I know the hotel is older but the whole feel of the place was great(by the way I have stayed in many five star resorts).The staff was helpful and attentive at all times (my husband said it was the first time a waitress hugged him because we came back to the restaurant a second time and she was happy to see us).My coffee cup was never empty in the morning and my wine glass was never empty during my meal.

The entertainment in the evening was great, the bands were good ,the acrobat was amazing, and karaoke was a great laugh. Chocolate night was great, Owen is a wonderful bartender. Great chocolate martinis. Thank-you Kiaya for teaching us how to play flip cup and treating us like we were your best friend (miss your smile already and your easy going way)
The food was good at all times. The most relaxing vacation ever. Came home feeling great. Thank-you all. Number one staff.

Room Tip: Ocean View
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank TomKaren2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda F, Manager at Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa, responded to this review, 14 July 2014
Dear TomKaren2014,

Thank you for taking the time out to provide us feedback about your stay at our Resort.

We're pleased to see that your vacation with us was everything you wanted it to be. Thank you for highlighting our friendly and attentive staff and our entertainment team. We hope you will come back to visit us again soon to enjoy some chocolate-martinis and to play some more flip-cup with Kiaya!

Best regards,
Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort Management
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
Ottawa, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 July 2014

We stayed at the Sonesta Great Bay from May 18-25 and we had a good experience. Most of the staff were very welcoming and friendly, especially the entertainment staff.

Scenery: A+
We enjoyed lounging by the ocean and watching the cruise ships come in, although the sand was a little hard on the feet. The resort is just a short 10-15 minute walk into the main town Phillipsburg where there are many shops. Front street was busy when the cruise ships were in and had a lot of tourist shops whereas Back street was less busy and less catered to tourists.

Rooms: B+
The Great Bay resort is older but it was kept clean.
My room must have been recently renovated because there was a huge empty space between the king-sized bed and the patio. I felt like something was missing. There should have been a chair and a table. Other than that, the room was well kept.

Food: B+
They had three restaurants to choose from every night and the food was pretty good. We did have a bad experience one night at the a la carte restaurant as the service was extremely slow. We received stale bread and spent over 2.5 hours in the restaurant when we normally were in and out in 1.5 hours. I personally have had much better food experiences on other all-inclusive resort locations at the same price. My parents really enjoyed the pizza at the daytime grill. The grill also had a really good salad with goat cheese and salmon. This restaurant transformed into an Italian cuisine on some nights. The third restaurant, the buffet, usually had a line in the evening, but the wait was no longer than 5-10 minutes. The food was always good at the buffet.

Daytime activities: A
The daytime activities were a blast. My mom enjoyed aqua fit and bingo, while I enjoyed volleyball and the flip cup tournaments. Thanks to the Resort Animators Denroy, Tevin, Joash, Nas marie, and Kiaya. Denroy did a great job getting everyone pumped for the games. He was always energetic and recruiting people. Because of these games, I made a group of friends who I went out with to a club one night.

Things to do outside the resort: A
On our second last day we did an island tour with one of the bartenders. We went to different beaches & locations that we would not have known about if we had done it one our own. The tour was about 4 hours and the driver provided us with drinks.
We also spent a half day at the sister resort, Maho. We watched the planes take off. My parents enjoyed lunch at this resort and I hung around the pool. The Maho resort is much bigger than Great Bay but they both have their own unique qualities.

Nightly entertainment: B
I have experienced much better nighttime entertainment. There seemed to me a lack of energy in the evenings and not many people were around. For someone my age (25), I would have liked one night with more upbeat music/entertainment. Karaoke was the best night except for when Denroy came back to say goodbye to us and one of the managers told him to leave. We didn’t think that we would get a chance to thank him until he showed up at Karaoke. Soon after, we saw him talking to a manager/supervisor and although we couldn’t hear what was being said, it looked like she was upset with him. He returned to us saying that he may have to leave. Denroy made our daytime experience at the resort a memorable one so it bothered us that he was being told to leave when we wanted to say goodbye.

Overall, it was a good vacation and I had a great time at this resort. My parents enjoyed their stay as well. We would probably return to Sonesta Great Bay because of the people, the scenery, and the island experience.

Room Tip: The ocean view rooms are a must.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Heather G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Baltimore, Maryland
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 July 2014

At first, I was surprised at how small the resort is. This is not as large as some of the other Carribean resorts we've stayed in. We stayed on the fifth floor, in an ocean view room. View was great, nice balcony, clean but not fancy. Our kids stayed on the fourth floor in a garden view room. Same type of room but with walk-in shower and no alcohol provided in the room. Food at the resort was much better than expected, drinks were good. There were not a lot of activities, but enough to keep us and our 20-something kids entertained most of the time, and they have a shuttle to the nightclubs in Maho on the weekends. (Wish they would cut back on the karaoke though - 2 nights of karaoke in one week was a little too much.) Staff was very pleasant and accommodating. Short walk to Philipsburg for shopping. You can take a bus to the sister resort in Maho. Highly recommend going there for the day to see the planes come and go (but I'm glad we didn't stay there). The water was great, beach was "shelly" but nice, and there are plenty of lounge chairs on the beach. We had a great trip, loved the island.

Room Tip: Upper floors, ocean view recommended
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank suelew123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda F, Manager at Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa, responded to this review, 14 July 2014
Dear suelew123,

Thank you for taking the time out to write your comments about your recent stay with us.

We're happy to see that we beat your expectations, and that you highly enjoyed the views, food, drinks and the location we are in. We are glad you and your family had fun at the resort, but we will make sure to pass on your feedback to our entertainment team.

We hope you and your family will come back to see us again soon!

Best regards,
Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort Management
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Baltimore, Maryland
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 July 2014

My wife and I stayed at Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort for our 34th wedding anniversary. We booked a 6 night stay in a garden view room, but to our surprise they upgraded us to a ocean view. Thank You Vicky. From the time we arrived to the time we left, we had a great time. The staff were very friendly and professional. Allot to do during the day, great pools a very nice beach ( would recommend wearing sandals or water shoes on the beach, because of the very course sand). A short walk to town if you get bored. The 3 restaurants were good 1 buffet style 2 theme ( but only one theme restaurant open at a time). At night there was always something to do. Live bands nightly or if you felt lucky you could try their Casino.
I want to give a special Thank you to Edrick .greeting us at the van with a smile ,a cold towel and champagne. Vicky for making our check in very easy and our wonderful room and Ella for making our Anniversary Dinner on the Beach amazing.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank David R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda F, Manager at Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa, responded to this review, 14 July 2014
Dear David R,

Thank you for taking the time out to write a review about your time with us.

First of all, Happy Anniversary, we are so pleased that you and your wife chose to spend your anniversary with us. We're glad that our Front Desk was able to upgrade you to a Ocean View room, perfect for your celebrations. Thank you for highlighting our staff as being friendly and professional, our entertainment, the food that was served and our location. We will make sure pass on your special thanks to Edrick, Ella, and Vicky for you.

We hope to see you and your Wife again soon!

Best regards,
Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort Management
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New York
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 July 2014 via mobile

This review is a little late but I stayed with my Ohpsalms travel family during memorial weekend and it was an amazing vacation. The staff was extremely helpful and attentive throughout the entire stay.
I have already shared the resorts information with family and friends that are planning to travel to St Maarten, I absolutely recommend...

Thanks again for a wonderful weekend and hope to return soon.

Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank happytotravel788
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
West New York, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 July 2014

My fiance and stayed at this resort for 5 days, July 21st through July 25th. This was our 1st to St Maarten and we picked this location with no knowledge of how this Hotel was rated. Lets just say we were not disappointed by the Island and the hotel. When we 1st pulled up we were a little skeptical but that quickly change when we saw the beautiful view and were greeted by the friendly staff at the main desk with champagne and a towel to wipe ourselves down which was relief after traveling all day. The hotel isn't a huge extravagant place which was a sigh of relief for my fiance and I. Everything is close by bars, restaurants, pools, main desk, etc. which we loved because we have stayed many places and are not big fans of huge hotels. The staff at this hotel has to be the friendliest we have ever experienced at any hotel from the bartenders, housekeepers, waitresses, cooks, etc. All the food was delicious from the buffet to the specialty restaurants, and all have beautiful views of the ocean along with the mountains. The entertainment was just right, poolside activities during the day and night time music entertainers were great. We were not disappointed in any aspect and will be going back soon. If you are looking for a crazy wild vacation save that for Cancun but if your looking for a beautiful relaxing place then Sonesta Great Bay in St Maarten is the place for you.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Michael M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda F, Manager at Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort, Casino & Spa, responded to this review, 14 July 2014
Dear Michael M,

Thank you for taking the time our to write your positive review about your time with us.

We're so glad that you were happy with your choice to stay with us and that your and your Fiance enjoyed everything about the resort, especially being greeted with a glass of Champagne and towels as you checked-in. Thank you for highlighting our staff, our entertainment and the quality of our food, we really strive to make sure our guests leave happy and eager to come back.

See you soon!

Best regards,
Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort Management
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Long Beach, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 July 2014

I'll be brief. Very nice island and pools were great at resort. But that was about it. The staff seemed disgruntled and it was obvious the resort is mismanaged from the minute we arrived. The casino either needs table games or needs to shut down.
The food was sub par. The bars were not serviced well. It took up to 15 minutes a few times as I waited for a drink. And at 8:00 the place shuts down. There's not even a bar to sit at and have a few drinks to relax. I found myself walking in circles a few nights out of boredom. I had no interest in getting a cab or shuttle bus to go to a bar that was off the resort. The gym was in bad shape. 3 machines and one was broke the whole week. There was 1 ATM machine at resort and it was not working all week. My list of issues is long and I would expect I'm not the only one noticing these issues.
Do a survey and spend some money to improve the resort and it could be a really nice place. It wasn't cheap to stay here and if I spend that kind of money I expect a positive experience which I did not have

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Dan B
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:
Region: Caribbean > St. Maarten-St. Martin > Sint Maarten > Philipsburg
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre 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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