Most of the St. Martin reviews have been very narrow minded. This is an Island, everything has to be imported and therefore is going to be more expensive than in the states, which does increase the food costs. Yes, do check the menus for the added service charge, which they do not consider a tip. You should tip if you have exceptional service a few dollars more. But the great deals on jewelry, liquor and beachwear make up to the expensive food. There are inexpensive restaurants if you are looking to just re-fuel, or just cook in your room.
I have been to St. Martin about 25 times over the past 22 years and usually stay 2 weeks at a time. When you visit the Island, please rent a car even if only for a day or two. Tour the island, go to the beautiful beaches, they are all different. My favorite beach is Orient, it is clothing optional at one end and all of the beaches on the frenchside are topless (as in france.) Orient is very much like the south of France beaches, where you can dine on the beach, get a massage on the beach and have a truly unique experience. I just LOVE IT!!
You must treat yourself to a fine meal in Marigot (the french capital) it is like eating in France. Even the thin crust pizza on the marinia is delicious. The unnameable chocolate dessert at La Chanteclair is to die for!!! The restaurants are expensive but worth it!!
Cherri's is fun on the Dutch side, with lively entertainment every night and it's free. Drinks and food are inexpensive at Cherri's.
The Sea Palace is in better condition now and is a great location, I checked on it in February 06. The beach is very nice. But don't just stay in Phillipsburg, you will be missing out on the whole island flavor.
There have been problems with drugs and stealing over the years on the entire island from time to tim. However it is usually not the Island people, but trouble makers from other islands. You should never leave anything of value in your car even at the beach, after all would you do that in any city in the US?!?! Don't think so!
It is not a pristine island and I like it that way. However, it is getting better all the time. I'm going to stay at the Sea Palace again in two weeks, and I'm looking forward to it.
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- Also Known As:
- Sea Palace Philipsburg
- Hotel Sea Palace
- Sea Palace Resort St. Maarten-St. Martin/Philipsburg