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“Hard to say that we would be back - renovation or not”

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Simpson Bay Resort & Marina
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Simpson Bay
Scottsdale, Arizona
Level Contributor
16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Hard to say that we would be back - renovation or not”
Reviewed 4 November 2013

We had the oppotunity to spend a one week stay with some friends as part of their timeshare exchange here.

Here's the 411:

Know that most of he people that work at the resort were very friendly and very kind. The check-in clerks were a little cranky.

We were given a two-bedroom unit in the Flamboyant building, after being told that we would be in the Dieffenbachia (remodeled) building. Let me say this about our room - dirty, outdated, sad, smelly (interior of kitchen cupboards was enough to make you hurl) and I really wish we had pushed for the cleaner, newer room we had been promised. The linens are clearly as old as the building, including the bed pillows. The shower water was HOT and then FREEZING and then hot again ~ it was really hard to regulate. I'm sure that is due to the age of the building. And everyone places their trash bags on the ground at the entrance to each of the sections of the builidng for pickup sometime during the day. Seems pretty unsanitary. Wood slats where there should be glass in the windows. No secuirty chain on the entry door. Maintenance workers entering with just a knock. All that being said they should really close that building until it is completely gutted. Window coverings didn't work, patio doors hard to open and close, A/C was spotty, floors are cracked with pieces missing, hair leftover from previous guests on the floor and in the shower -- we were literally walking around in our flip flops to avoid touching the floors. The bathroom floor was especially gross.

Althought the Flamboyant building is right on the beach it isn't worth the location.

Resort amenities = kinda sad too. Pool area = sparse (no attendants and no tables by the lounges - I was afraid to put a beer or a cocktail on the ground) -- the beach was dirty with cigarette butts and bits of trash. It was raked each morning but I believe more staff is needed to keep the resort up to standards ~ both for the interiors and the exteriors.

We thoroughly enjoyed the time with our family of friends but if we were to ever return to St Maarten we would choose a different "resort". I'm honestly surprised at all the rave reviews.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank skippersdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gerardo G, Online Reputation Manager at Simpson Bay Resort & Marina, responded to this review, 26 November 2013
Dear guest:

Thank you very much for taking the time to share your experience . Your comments are vital for us to continue improving our accommodations. The problems that you mentioned have been brought to the attention of our housekeeping department and we are taking action in order to prevent any situation like this in the near future. Even though we are in a transition of upscaling the resort renovating every room, there is no excuse for all what you went through. We are sorry for the
inconvenience and annoyance these incidents caused.

We do apologize if we weren't able to give a wonderful time in St. Maarten, nonetheless we are learning from this and we would like to encourage you to give us another chance to serve you.

Thank you again for your comments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
24 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 182 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 October 2013

Stayed 10/19-10/26/13, traveled with two other couples - all in our early-mid 40's.

We are regular travelers to beach destinations and this was only our second non-all inclusive resort in 10 years. We won a 3br/3bath top floor condo at a silent auction and took two of our friends and their spouses. For the small amount we paid, it was a very good deal. However, as I did research what the cost would be if we would have booked it regular, I would have been very disappointed.

No comments on check in as it was typical.

Room - very, very dated and could tell it was in need of rennovation. I didn't mind the decor as much as I did the cracked walls and bugs. I understand they are scheduled to renovate all the buildings in the next couple of years. The view was great, overlooked the pool bar, beach and ocean. Full kitchen facility, but the frig never got very cold.

Beach/Pool - the beach was very nice. No trouble finding shade and there is a beach bar that serves good lunches, beer and cocktails. The mahi sandwich was very good. Pool was also nice. There are no waves at all which some people like. We prefer waves so not great for us, but that's just a personal preference.

Amenities - there is a little deli/grocery store on site that is just as good or better than the grocery store at the end of the street. Good liquor, wine and food selection and prices are not that high. We also did a sunset "booze" cruise that was a lot of fun and would highly recommend. It was only about 90 minutes and they serve snacks. You get on the boat right on site at the resort.

Service - was very hit/miss. Sometimes we got very friendly people and other times they acted like they could care less what we wanted. Very strange as this is low season and there wasn't that many people there. I would actually say more bad than good - not really bad, but just didn't care about taking care of their customers.

Not much more to say other than we will probably stick to all inclusives. We just like the activities offered and nightlife at the bigger all inclusive resorts better. This was "off season" so maybe they offer more things to do during the winter "high season". We do like to drink so the cost was quite a bit higher than the all inclusives and I actually like the all inclusive beaches in Dominican Republic and Riveria Maya better. There is a lot of commercialization around and I prefer a few more palm tress and less buildings.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank CaesarKelley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
218 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 119 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 October 2013

We enjoyed a week at Simpson Bay Resort through interval International exchange. The hotel called a week in advance to confirm our reservation and answer any questions (how much is taxi fare from the airport, etc) we might have. The check-in process was efficient and we were taken by van to our room. The complex is large and our building was situated on a hill. The unit was spacious although the bathroom was a bit small. The resort has many restaurant possibilities. We tried them all and they were all good. Also, there is a little grocery store for supplies. There are quite a few pools and since it was still low season it was easy to find a lounge and relax. We were pleased with Aquamania which provided tours of all kinds. I recommend the half day tour of the island which is reasonable, informative, and entertaining. We also took the Edge ferry to St. Bart's right from the resort marina. The staff was generally friendly. We appreciated Priscilla, one of the concierge staff. She answered our every question and made dinner reservations when requested.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Joelyn O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ozark, Missouri
Level Contributor
34 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 October 2013

In October 2013, we went for our second trip to St. Maarten having gone there for one week in October of 2012. Last year we stayed in the Villas at Simpson Bay Resort. This year we stayed in the Caladium Building of the main resort. Both of our trips have been during "hurricane season" making some things more reasonable in price. We had no problems with the weather, although the forecast for almost the whole time was 50-60% chance of rain. It did rain a few times, sometimes at night & sometimes during the day. However, it did not rain enough to interfere with any of our activities.
The Villas are newer & more luxurious, but we thought that our condo in the Caladium Building was fine. We requested a water view & were happy with the view from our balcony. The condo had been renovated not so long ago & was in good shape. Only my wife & I stayed there, but it had room for more people, having 2 Murphy beds in the living room.
Everyone at the resort was very friendly and helpful at all times. We would not hesitate to return there in the future and recommend it to others traveling to St. Maarten.
Being in our early 70s, we prefer to eat our main meal at lunchtime. Consequently, we did not eat at all of the restaurants on the resort. Several were only open for dinner. Our favorite restaurants were The Greenhouse just down the street from the resort, and Topper's on the Beach right next door at Diamonds Flamingo Resort.
We rented a car from Paradise Rental for our two weeks, having rented one from them last year and being totally satisfied with them. We drove around the island several times, visiting Phillipsburg, the market at Marigot, Orient Beach, etc.
We took several trips with Aqua Mania, which has an office on the resort, and had a great time on all of them.

Room Tip: The Villas are the newest and most luxurious, but several other buildings have lovely water views fr...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank billduet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Puerto Rico
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 October 2013

This is a multi building hotel/resort complex with all kinds of rooms and facilities, including several pools, restaurants, spa, casino, and one of the most beautiful small bays I've seen, with excellent beach for swimming and access to sailing, scuba diving and other water sports. Very close to the airport and accessible to a variety of restaurants, shops, and other exciting places within the beautiful island of St. Martin/Saint Maarten. One of the most attractive vacation spots we have been, worth visiting again. All the people in the island are friendly and make you feel great. If you book as a getaway or exchange, maid service is restricted to one service visit during the week, unless you pay extra, the same as for any other time share. But remember, there is no such thing as a cheap or budget vacation. Even in a time share, you need to have enough cash to pay the asked price for food and the things you need or want to have. One morning we went for breakfast to a nice nearby restaurant and we had to leave before ordering, as they don't accept credit cards.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Pinky1948
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nokomis, Florida
Level Contributor
22 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 October 2013

Room was nice, however we had to walk up a huge hill to get to it. Pool was closed because they wer renovating the units behind us, so that was inconvenient. We were directed to the beach and the first day was great. The next time we went the guy wouldn't give us lounge chairs because he was with another resort... That's confusing. Couldn't enjoy dinner out because cab could only drop us off at the main lobby and we had to end our evening walking up the largest hill... Not impressed.

Room Tip: Do not choose the Beaumont building unless you enjoy walking. We didn't have a choice.
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Darlene C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Florida
Level Contributor
18 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 October 2013

Walking distance to many cool places, room location was decent but we usually dont hang out in the room on vacations. Piano Bar is a must, we made it a nightly visit. Casino was nice, Beach was beautiful. Many bar/restaurants on location. Market on location to stock up fridge and grab a sandwich for the beach too.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank MisterBobDobalina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Simpson Bay Resort & Marina

Property: Simpson Bay Resort & Marina
Address: Billy Folly Road #37, Simpson Bay, St. Maarten-St. Martin
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > St. Maarten-St. Martin > Sint Maarten > Simpson Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Simpson Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Simpson Bay Resort & Marina 4*
Number of rooms: 342
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled on a hillside overlooking Simpson Bay, one of the most popular spots on St. Maarten, Simpson Bay Resort & Marina is a peaceful Mediterranean-style holiday village offering comfortable suites and all the services guests could possibly need during their Caribbean vacation. With a sheltered private beach, five pools and colorful gardens full of bougainvillea, hibiscus and Allamanda, Simpson Bay Resort & Marina is a captivating island hideaway where you can enjoy the best family vacation ever. A varied activity program, tennis courts, a spa, water sports, dining and evening entertainment make it a favorite with visitors of all ages. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Simpson Bay Resort & Marina Hotel Simpson Bay
Simpson Bay Resort And Marina
Simpson Bay Resort & Marina St. Maarten-St. Martin

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