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Simpson Bay Resort & Marina
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Reviews (1,286)
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Reviewed 7 August 2011

We are Marriott timeshare owners and traded to this resort at the end of July/beginning of August. We were first assigned to a room in the "B" building. Got in the room and it not only smelled odd but it was also outdated...definitely not an equal trade to the Marriott rooms we've had. We asked to be switched to the newer building and received a much nicer room near the pool, but we had to pay $450 for the upgrade. Clean, plenty of space to move around for just two of us. All in all, I was not impressed with this resort. It was fine, but nothing great. Just beer and sodas at the swim-up pool bar...no mixed drinks, no wine. Small beach in a different area from the pool. Had to pay to utilize the gym. Parts of the resort definitely looked run down. It was okay, but if you're a Marriott timeshare owner looking for an equal trade, this isn't the place. Also, a few things to know before going to St. Maarten: (1) you must rent a car. There is no real bus system (their buses are mini-vans that the locals use) and I never saw a taxi other than at the airport. We literally had to drive just about everywhere. (2) bring plenty of cash, since you can't charge too much on the island. We had to pay cash for smaller meals (such as breakfast), drinks, and even gas. We liked St. Maarten, and are glad we went, but we don't feel a need to go back.

Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
7  Thank Graciesmom228
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2011

We are a touch spoiled and tend to stay in some pretty nice places so I am trying to be fair here. First, the location (in terms of views and such, is pretty sweet. Nice beach, beautiful views of the ocean (depending on the room), and a fair number of shops and restaurants on the grounds. It was our understanding (from some locals) that the place had recently gone through a pretty nasty labor issue. It seemed to have been solved when we got there. Most of the staff we encountered were quite good. Very friendly at the front desk and usually very helpful. Elizabeth offered great food recommendations! Now, check-in took way too long. Not sure how they can streamline it, but it was pretty slow. Check-out was a bit better but my timing was perfect. When I was done, there was a line of about 10 guests, so they may have a different opinion. Be prepared for a $50 timeshare "tax" at the end that we were not informed of upon check-in. Seemed a little shady to sneak that in and I am not sure if it is legit.
When we got to our room, it was average. It just felt dirty. The floors were wet and a bit sticky. Smelled a little musty. There was some standing water in the kitchen. When housekeeping came after three days, the lady did a MUCH better job...even provided us some fresh flowers, which was a beautiful touch. The appliances in the room just needed a bit of an update. Nothing terrible, just needed some sprucing up. The a/c only blows in the bedroom so the rest of the unit (where our son slept) was much warmer.
The pools (most of them) and the grounds seem pretty well maintained. Bon Apetite (casual and inexpensive) and The Stone (more formal and expensive) are solid places to eat and you can walk to either easily from any unit.
The place seems to be making an attempt to improve. I wish them the best of luck. Has unlimited potential.

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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7  Thank osceola84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 July 2011

We traded our Marriott timeshare for a week in St. Maarten at this Simpson Bay Resort and were not disappointed. All the tips I received from the TripAdvisor Forums and the past reviews were right on. The Resort is in a great location to walk to the dining, casino, beach and bars. We rented a car and enjoyed the French side as well. There is a wonderful dinner cruise that leaves from the hotel so make this a priority. We also spent a day in Antigua and loved it! Have fun!

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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7  Thank KCIGM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 July 2011

Upon arriving, we were shown a very dated economy suite which was embarrassing. We had to upgrade to a modern jr. suite @ $300. Since we couldn't check in till 4pm they pretty much ignored us after that, we just wanted to get our bags in the room. Had to practically beg for service. Also, once on the hotel grounds you are on THEIR TIME! Don't expect any services at the speed which you are used to in the States. And don't expect that to change buy buying a Swiss Timepiece either. Lobby bar was closed the whole week. No frozen mixed drinks at the main pool either - machine broken. Hello?!? That's one of the main reasons I go on vacation!! The elevator we needed to get to our floor never closed properly you had to manually push the doors together and still that trick would only work when I said "Sim Sim Sala Bim!" Seriously. Car rental through the resort is a good deal you can get a tiny hatchback for about $110/week and gas was only $25 to replace the tank. WATER PRESSURE NON EXISTENT IN SHOWER!! I've had worse but my GF hated it. Also drainage is terrible so it's best to shower after a few drinks so you won't care as much. The sewer backed up on the first floor in the hallway during our trip. We needed to take that corridor to get to the pool, so that was sensational, literally. Don't buy pints of Haagen Dasz @ Peil Deli unless you don't mind drinking it the following day b'c they won't fit in the freezer. Neither will a bag of ice unless you get very creative and with the use of shopping bags divvy it up into slabs. NO ICE MACHINES ON THIS RESORT!!! Major WTF! Even Ramada Inns have ice machines. The air conditioning in the room worked very well but that made me never want to venture outside. Beds were clean and comfy, so was the apt. As far as activities we went to St. Barts for the day and rented a 125cc scooter on the twisty mountain paths - that was wild. Lunch was outrageously priced - although the food was delish - that's how the she-she do on this island; a bottle of water = $12. So bring lots of greenage esp. if you want Lacoste polos or a Cartier. The second activity we enjoyed was the evening cruise+dinner, that was worth it. There's plenty of lolo's (roadside food shacks), cafe's and restaurants to make your head spin; if you're a foodie you will be challenged b/c there's a lot of repetition. I think I had Mahi at least once a day in some form. Taste Factory for chocolate almond croissant and Lee's for Ribs both in Simpson Bay. Passagrahna in Phillipsburg for grilled lob & ambiance. Sunset Bar @ Maho Beach for wings, live reggae and the chance to hang on to a fence a few hundred meters behind a 757 during takeoff. Lastly, Buccaneer Bar for the best Bloody Ceaser you'll ever have, (Clamato intsead of Tom Juice) as long as Wanda makes it and it's not too busy. We jumped on this resort b/c it was through my timeshare but I would say investigate and do some homework if you want completely hassle-free. Indira, the concierge, was the friendliest person on the whole island. She will give you free day gym passes if you ask nicely. Plenty of hot sauce on this island to smooth out the rough spots for me, would do it again.

Room Tip: Expect to pay for an upgrade if you have a basic timeshare package. The old rooms are...old.
  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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6  Thank yemoss1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 July 2011

I stayed a week at simpson bay resort and marina (former pelican) from june 26-july 3, 2011.
I was really nervous about going to this hotel because i couldnt find any particular ratings for this hotel. So when we got to the hotel staff were friendly but unreliable. They assigned us a room to us after traveling from vancouver to toronto 4hrs and 4hrs wait in toronto and another 4h30m flight to st maarten. I was exhausted! When we got our room it wasnt clean at all. Sooo dirty and i called front desk and they got someone to bring us a new key after waiting for 20 mins. Then the front desk told us that theres wifi and it didnt work.. Never lets u log in and it was frustrating. Then we got our new room and it wasnt very clean.. Found 3 dead cockroaches on the ground and i asked front desk to check over and re clean the room for us they said yes and when we went back to the room it wasnt cleaned as promised. So i was disappointed again. I liked how theres security around the resort and it was a good felt really safe. The restaurant on site The Stone was delicious but pricy. My bf and i went to st maarten to celebrate for my birthday so we booked the tango boat cruise and it wasnt really worth it .. The food was not great buffet and i didnt feel full. The other cruise where u can go to a restaurant to eat and go aound island sound like a better option. We also booked a scuba diving trip the day after my birthday and we filled out our paper work and watched the entire 20min video and then a staff member pulled us out to tell us they were overbooked and that we can be rescheduled next day and add on 2 other people to the class. They said they can give us complimentary 45min jetski for their mistake but again overpromised under deliver we only played for 15mins of jetski. Dont have high expectations for this resort. The on site restaurant toppers was good too. But the room's cleanliness was bad and we never gotten our room cleaned the 7 days we stayed and asked front desk and they said they clean once a week. I travel alot to hotels for work about half the month every month and i never been to a hotel that doesnt clean your room daily even a 3 star travelodge would. The kitchen wasnt very clean!! The salt and pepper shakers was filthy. If u dont have expectations for the room then u wont be disappointed. The staff at the resort was friendly just dont always deliver. St maarten is a amazing friendly island. You will love it there.

  • Stayed: June 2011
    • Value
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2  Thank Skybaby629
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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