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“Perfect place in Oyster Pond”
Review of Sol Hotel

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Sol Hotel
Ranked #5 of 8 Hotels in Oyster Pond
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 20 April 2010

My wife and I just spent two wonderful nights (April 12 and 13) at Sol Hotel in Oyster Pond, St. Martin. This is a very charming and typically French yet typically Caribbean small hotel. Just perfect. The views of Oyster Pond and its marina and the surrounding hillsides (especially at night) from our balcony were much better than million dollar views. My wife and I thought to each other, “If you can’t be happy here, you can’t be happy anywhere.” We had a king sized bed in a large room and we had a small kitchen. The shower and bathroom were very nice as well. We did not have a TV which we don’t care about when we travel abroad although there are rooms available with TV if you want that. If you are looking for chocolates on your pillow every night and gold-plated faucets in the bathroom, this is not the place for you. It met our requirements of being affordable, safe, clean and comfortable. In addition, we got a romantic setting in beautiful surroundings. We could not have asked for more, nor did we want more. Collette, the manager, could not have been more helpful and accommodating to us. She was willing to do everything she could to help us have a pleasant stay and she did. There are several nice restaurants and art galleries within close walking distance to this hotel. We were pleasantly surprised by the quality of food and live entertainment we had at Captain Oliver’s Resort and Marina just down the hill from Sol Hotel. We will definitely be spending several nights here next year when we return.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Euge F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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93 - 99 of 182 reviews

Reviewed 13 April 2010

I just returned from a blissful week at this hotel in St. Martin. I chose Sol Hotel based on the reviews here and I am very happy to offer another positive view on the place. We were more than pleased with everything- the room, the surrounds and Oyster Pond. The pictures on the website and posted by other travelers here are very accurate. And I'm still amazed that it was also actually the cheapest room I could find on the internet when planning my trip.

The manager Collete was incredibly helpful from the very beginning. We corresponded quite a bit before our arrival and she always responded to my emails almost immediately. When we arrived we were delighted to learn that since the hotel wasn't busy she had upgraded us to a suite. The room was lovely, simple and very clean. It opened onto a large terrace with a little kitchenette, table and chairs and sitting area. The view from the terrace was gorgeous. It looked out over the bay and the marina with a backdrop of green hills and the Caribbean Sea. The terrace was very private and of course covered so we spent much more time outside than we did inside.

Food in St. Martin can be expensive so having the kitchenette was great. We went to a supermarket (there are lots of supermarkets in the bigger towns-Philipsburg, Marigot, Grand Case, and also a small convenience store in Oyster Pond) for a few basics and were able to have some meals in. There was a small fridge, two-burner stove, sink, espresso maker (european stove-top style), dishes, glasses, etc. (There was only one pot so cooking a big meal wasn't really a great option.) When you do eat out, there is a very nice restaurant in the Marina about a 5 minute walk from the hotel called Quai Ouest, we had two very nice meals there. Also Grand Case has great restaurants and its a close drive. I've also heard that the restaurant at Lotterie Farm is very good. Just ask Collete, she was full of suggestions about things to do, places to eat, etc.

It is true you need to rent a car if you stay in Oyster Pond but ours was only $18 a day and the freedom it allowed us was priceless. You can easily get around the entire island and explore everywhere by car in St. Martin. We covered a lot of ground on our trip and really saw a lot, honestly there was no other place I would have rather stayed than in Oyster Pond. It really is a picturesque, quaint, clean little village on the hillside overlooking a beautiful bay. Before we left I had researched a lot of places to stay, I had considered a couple of other hotels but once on the island we saw some of them and I was so glad we hadn't chosen anything else, the others did not exactly live up to their photos online. I had thought it would be fun to be in Grand Case or Marigot but really we were glad to just go there during the day and return to the peace and quiet of Oyster Pond at the end of the day.

The pool and surrounding terrace are really beautiful (check out the pictures on the website) and many of the rooms have terraces that open directly onto the pool. We spent so much time at the beaches and exploring the island I only wish we'd set aside half a day to just sit by the pool at the hotel. It was always quiet and peaceful.

I have read the only negative review posted here and the only thing I can figure is that maybe this person really would rather have all the amenities of a resort. We had absolutely no problems with service, cleanliness or convenience in any way. To me the ideal vacation is peace and quiet in a beautiful and tranquil setting. I am very happy to recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank followurbliss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 March 2010

Decided to stay at Sol Hotel for four nights based on the reviews from TripAdvisor. Up to this point I've never not recommended a hotel, but this one merits a negative review. I should note that Colette was not working there while I was there which might be a reason for the outcome of this trip.

Rooms: Rooms are large and and nicely decorated. The beds are a bit old and not of that good of standard. You can tell they're old by the fact that the middle of the bed dips. The balcony and view is great and overall this hotel does have a lot of charm. The kitchen, though, could use a good cleaning/updating as the things in there look like they've been there since the 1970's. There is no TV for the non-suite rooms, but this was just fine by me. The bathroom is nice, though one day there was almost no water pressure.

Cleaning: I was there four nights and my place was only cleaned once. Ok, make that twice as they decided to clean it 15 minutes before I was checking-out which meant that after I took a shower and dragged sand back into the room they either had to clean the room again or I feel sorry for the new people who saw dirty towels and sand (poor management will quickly become the theme of this review). I don't know why they only cleaned my place once, so be prepared to use dirty towels for a few days.

Location: Good location next to Oyster Pond Marina. You definitely need to rent a car (there is no exception to this unless you want to spend $100/day on taxis). There is a mini-market and a few restaurants close by and you can get to Dawn beach with about a 15 minute walk. The view of the Marina and the Atlantic Ocean is great.

Management: Poor. I don't usually care about service from a hotel as I am a very independent traveler, but the management here was bad. Upon arrival I had to wait at the front desk for 30 minutes until somebody came even though I gave them my time I would arrive. I would not see anybody at the front desk again until the day before I left. This was bad because I needed to use a phone for an excursion (there are no phones in the room either) and nobody was ever there. To make things worse, the phone number they leave to call them only works during business hours. If you need anything (taxi, lost keys, etc) after this, you're out of luck. Lastly, departure. Management didn't even know what day I was leaving - no kidding. The guy working there was very nice, but he just didn't seem to know what he was doing.

Language: My french is pretty good and there was still a language problem here, so if you decide to stay, make sure you can speak some french.

Overall: The place is charming, but after I stayed here I wish I had stayed at a resort...and I hate resorts. If you don't rent a car or don't speak french, don't stay here. Otherwise, if you do stay, make sure you're aware of all the things you have to pay attention to.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled solo
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2  Thank wrld_trav82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
solhotel, directrice at Sol Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 31 March 2010
Google Translation

Etant en congé exceptionnel pour cause de décès dans famille , la personne qui m'a remplaçé pendant mon absence a fait ce qu'elle a pu pour accueillir tous mes clients, l'hotel étant très petit, cette personne a pris des heures de repos , ce qui impose la fermeture exceptionnelle des apres midis à la réception entre 12 et 17 heures ;

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 March 2010

My husband and I were blown away by this small but beautiful hotel. I loved how clean it was and the bed was so comfortable and the sheets and towels were all 5 star. We loved the privacy we had and the manager (Colette) was just wonderful to us. We loved it so much that we are going back in Feb. of 2011 and staying much longer. We loved being able to have some meals right out on our own Veranda. I can't say enough about this hotel and Colette.

Jim & Nancy, New Bern, N.C.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank femmesebo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 March 2009

Relaxed, friendly management, and the views of the Atlantic from the balconies are stunning. Excellent value. And the three dogs are delightful.
The location is good too- you can easily get to Dawn Beach by water taxi - remember to say you're staying in Oyster Pond and it costs $1 per person each way. The nature reserve with wonderful beaches is approximately a mile away.

1  Thank A_L021
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 March 2009

After checking out other hotels , some world famous however very pricey, I was lucky enough to find this terriffic place with an outstanding manager by the name of Collette.
Not being a wealthy person money wise I needed to find a nice place that I could come back to after a day on the island to hang my hat , take a nice shower. make a meal and rest while watching the boats below in the marina and outstanding view of sunrise and sunsets without needing a 2nd mortgage.
Granted you are your own room servise but for me all I wanted was a nice place to sleep that was cozy clean and pretty private and peacefull without all the frills I don't need.
Dollar for dollar this is a great deal and is one of the best reasons that I am comming back to St Maarten for.
I will be back and I will be back at Sol Hotel and I will be bringing friends too.
By the way. there some great restaurants just a hop and a jump away. also great food and ambiance.
To Sol Hotel and Collette> I loved meeting you both and thank you for making my stay the BEST !!!

  • Stayed: January 2009, travelled solo
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1  Thank oillover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2009

WHAT A FIND!!!!! We spent an amazing week here and had the absolute best time. We decided on Sol Hotel from the one review on T-A. Even though the review was a favorable one, I must say we were a bit nervous, not knowing what we were getting into for an entire week. Seconds upon arriving we were blown away. We walked into our room with flowers on the bed and the incredible view of Oyster Pond peaking through our balcony doors, We knew instantly we made the right choice.
Let me state that this is not a hotel with all the bells and whistles of most on the island so if you are looking for Spa-like treatments, 24 hour room service, all-night pool parties and a singles scene, this is not the place for you. What you get is a quiet, peaceful and relaxing room in Oyster Pond, which I must say is the only place to stay on the Island if rest and relaxation is what you are looking for. FYI: The single & Double Rooms do NOT have TV. If you absolutely need TV, upgrade to one of the suites (and/or look into therapy).
The Manager, Colette was terrific. What ever she gets paid is not enough, she deserves a raise. She was very helpful in every way from recommending restaurants, beaches, must-see areas; letting us use her computer with internet access to helping us one night in a power-outtage with candles and flashlights. She even brought us a booster seat and toys for our young son. She also speaks engligh very well so to all the american travelers, DON'T LET THE FRENCH LANGUAGE SCARE YOU. You can stay here, not speak a lick of French and be fine. The Hotel's website does translate into english. You can find it at this address: http://www.solhotel.info/AccueilUS.html
We stayed in Room 3 which was perfect. The bed was 2 twins pushed together to give the appearence of a King (a common European occurance). Some people might find that hard to swallow, get over it. The bed was not as bad as the other review stated; it is firm but not horrible. Each room has a balcony that overlooks the pool and Oyster Pond, which is where we ate breakfast every morning. Colette offers breakfast every morning for a fee in the hotel but we did our own shopping and made use of the Kitchenette in the room; which has nearly everything you could need from mugs, glasses, silverware, plates bowls, pots & pans. The refridgerator was compact but stored a lot and has a small freezer section to make ice and rapid chill beverages. There are flowers and shrubs everywhere on the property and every morning at breakfast we were greeted by butterflies.
The pool was great, always clean (pool service came twice a week). It is nearly all one depth, about 4.5-5 feet. Colette informed us that it is actually filled with filtered rain water. The one area we did not use was the barbeque area, which we inteded to do but ran out of time.
Sol Hotel is a short drive to major tourist areas. Phillpsburg: 15-20 Min; Orient Baie: 10 Min; Grand Case: 15-20 Min; Airport & Marigot 30 Min.
There are also ample restaurants to choose from in Oyster Pond as well as 2 markets--one a short walkfrom the hotel and the other on the Dutch side. If you really want peace and quiet check out Coralita Beach, a 1 minute drive from the hotel. A deserted beach by an abandoned hotel--takes a bit of a walk but chances are you'll be the only one on the beach.
As you can see, we cannot say enough good things about Sol Hotel. In fact, the only reason I joined T-A was to write this review. We just hope that when we want to go back it is not fully booked!!!

  • Stayed: February 2009, travelled with family
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4  Thank McZerb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sol Hotel

Address: Rue de L Escale | 38 Oyster Pond, Oyster Pond 97150, St Martin / St Maarten
Region: Caribbean > St Martin / St Maarten > Sint Maarten > Oyster Pond
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 8 Hotels in Oyster Pond
Price Range: £51 - £88 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Sol Hotel 2*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Very lovely and quiet place- TV in room and free WIFI ... more   less 
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