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“My Love Affair With St. Maarten”

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Les Balcons d'Oyster Pond
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Oyster Pond
Certificate of Excellence
Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
2 reviews
“My Love Affair With St. Maarten”
Reviewed 7 May 2013

I used TripAdvisor to help me determine my trip destination for my 40th Birthday by myself. I could not have chose a better place to stay than Les Balcones in Oyster Pond on the beautiful island of St. Maarten. This was my first time visiting the island. I stayed for two nights with an 11 hour layover in Puerto Rico allowing me to visit the rainforest and I'm already planning my return tip in August! The owners of the property offer a VERY quaint, CLEAN, private, quiet and secure place to lay your head. I didn't feel "harassed" with anyone knocking on my door, but received a VERY Warm friendly greeting and departue. The suite was stocked with towels, tissue, hair dryer, iron, safe, counter top stove, grill on patio and everything you need essentially. There was a fridge and microwave in my room and a grocery store near by to stock up. The wifi isn't the strongest but at some point I NEEDED to "unplug" anyway, that just gave me an excuse to do so!! The outlets are European so remember to bring an adaptor, but the owners will provide one if you ask. Keep in mind THIS is NOT a resort, no one will "cater" to your "needs", act as if you are at home (my home does NOT include a maid, so IF YOURS does, don't expect maid service!). The privacy made me feel like I WAS right at HOME! And giving BACK to the local business owners made me feel better than paying the over priced corps! They provide an alarm system, but really there is no need, the property is a gated community.

There really isn't a need to leave the property!! But IF you do, the locals are very friendly and will give you assistance if you are kind and polite! I live in Connecticut which is an hour away from New York, expect New York driving while there!! Locals barely follow traffic lights and there aren't any posted speed limits. If you are a timid driver, do not rent a car!! DO pull to the side if you are being tailgated by a local and let them pass. There are a LOT of potholes, don't chance being forced to drive faster and risk damaging the rental car. I loved it once I got the lay of the land, the round abouts give you a better sense of direction IF you get turned around. I got "lost" on purpose just to explore, what better place to get lost in! And because its a small island, you WILL get back to where you started eventually! Les Balcones provide an alarm system, but really there is no need, the property is a gated community. St. Maarten is rich in culture, language and FOOD!! You must enjoy the cuisine!! I spent most of my money locally, at fruit stands or local snack shacks, but I hardly had an appetite or SLEPT because the island "feeds" you mentally with so many senses of pure delight! I spent my birthday evening at Sol E Luna and felt like I was in a romantic movie IN FRANCE! The ambiance was WELL worth the visit. Although be prepared to pay for it! I ONLY ordered dessert, Creme Brule and a House Mojito cost $50.00 US dollars! I can only imagine what it would cost to eat there! But for my birthday this was my only splurge! I was able to keep my spending expenses to a maximum of $150.00 including my car rental which was a tiny Hyundai I10. Be warned, the hills are VERY steep, but the little car I drove MADE it up them!! The views are breath taking and stunning! A must visit is Dawn beach, because my name is Dawn, I was tickled pink to be on a beach baring my name that almost seemed secluded! Both days I went hardly anyone was there! I started out the villa around 7am each morning and enjoyed the peace and quiet before most people woke up! If you are up to explore the Nude beach Orient is quite a place to visit as well. The sand is powder soft and the water will massage your soul from the outside IN! Whether you are just laying out on the beach enjoying the gentle waves hitting the shore or exploring the tiny neighborhoods your visit WILL be an enjoyable one! I look forward to my next visit. Jouir De!!

Room Tip: Because Wifi can be a little shaky, have patience when waiting for the owners to respond to your inq...
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  • Stayed May 2013, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Dawn L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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253 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (49)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level Contributor
41 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 April 2013

This was our fourth stay at Les Balcons and it won't be our last. The view from our upper level wooden porch was amazing. You not only have a beautiful view of the marina but the ocean as well. The rooms are cozy and inviting. Great location for getting around the island, so be sure to rent a car. Bring a good pair of walking shoes and stroll the neighborhood. Wonderful friendly people. We love Carine the manager as she always makes sure we feel very welcomed and at home. We can't wait until our next visit!

Room Tip: If you can book an upper level room.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ILANSOL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
boston
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 March 2013

I spent 3 days here, on the recommendation of Lonely Planet, after a 1 week sailing trip. It was the perfect end to my vacation. Great location, quiet, large, tastefully decorated, clean, fully-equipped unit, with a huge porch overlooking the marina and the sea beyond. The manager, Carine Poret, and her staff were friendly, accomodating, and full of great information about what to see and do, where to eat, etc. I WILL stay here on my next visit to St. Martin. I highly recommend this little jewel!

Room Tip: Plan ahead--this place fills up quickly, though I was able to make a last minute arrangement.
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank dgurewitz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
59 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 March 2013

The reviews for this lodging option were spot on. The location was lovely, although parking was a bit cramped. The view of the marina is wonderful, and the furnishings are well-maintained. The bed was far more comfortable than the supposed 4-star hotel we stayed in for 2 nights before. A few problems with the shower function and water pressure, but we found that to be a typical issue on the island. It's nice to have a kitchen to be able to make breakfast and eat on the terrace overlooking the boats and order bread from the local bakery for the morning. Definitely bring some bug spray for the mosquitos though. We were only disappointed that we couldn't grill lobsters because as Carine informed us, the lobsterman no longer delivers there so you'll have to go into Marigot to find lobsters, which is a bit of a trek in the early morning. But you won't be upset with dinner at the nearby Quai Ouest. Don't waste your money on the American TV though, as it only had about 4 working channels. Our stay in Bungalow 3 was even lovelier than our more expensive 2 nights in 16, although it was on the end, and the cats took a little longer to make their way to us. (Make sure you're ok with cats and ants, which you can expect to find as well.) Anais was quite helpful and pleasant as well. The only thing I regret is not being able to stay there longer!

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank theworldaw8s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paris, France
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 March 2013

We have been coming to Les Balcons for 8 years and have just had another lovely holiday. Personally, I think the service is excellent. The information that is sent out when booking clearly states that linens are only changed for stays of more than 6 nights and the accommodation is self-catered; I always expect to buy my own supplies, washing up liquid, toilet paper, food etc. It's not 'all inclusive'. It's not a hotel. It's a little jewel of a place, with a special French touch and hard working, professional management. Thank you Carine and David, as always.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank James B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
njusa
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 March 2013

Just returned from our 9 days at Les Balcons. Thanks to all the Tripadvisors who encouraged us to go there. And enormous thanks to Carine and David who are even better, more helpful and charming hosts than we could have expected. Loved Oyster Pond--a small, laid back, quiet community with lovely views and just about as much activity as we wanted--nearly none, but lots to do if you are inclined. Stayed three nights in #20 and 6 nights in the Sweety Cottage. Great views in the former, but fabulous space, view, breezes, furnishings, patio/deck/pool, and neighbors, both human and visiting pets, in the latter. Do not pass up the morning bakery delivery (not from a local baker, but Carine's secret Marigot source). Again, C & D were not just great hosts but even helped us navigate our way through dealing with a little neighborhood fender-bender. Way beyond the call of duty. Cannot give Les Balcons a higher rating.

Room Tip: Best top level, probably as far out as possible.
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank bwf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Port-au-Prince
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 March 2013

Les balcons is a charming place to stay, but as the owners will tell you - it's not a hotel. Each room has a lovely balcony that overlooks Oyster Bay, one of the most picturesque locations on the island and definitely one of the quietest. Highlights include: gorgeous views onto the marina, spacious balcony with nice furniture and grill, well-stocked kitchen (!), pretty bed and interior.

The managers are very friendly and accommodating to requests, but that's just the thing - you have to request a lot compared to any other hotel. In the 3 days we stayed, no one changed our linens once. On Friday morning they were around to help us make calls and get information, but after that we never saw any staff until checking out on Monday. The most ridiculous was only receiving one roll of toilet paper - of course they gave us another when we asked, but something like that should never have been an issue in such a nice place.

Otherwise: AC worked well, good hot showers, books and games available. If you're okay cleaning up after yourself every day (or even if you expect it in advance), it's a lovely place. I don't think there is much on St. Martin that will match it for charm and quiet.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Taylor S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carine P, Owner at Les Balcons d'Oyster Pond, responded to this review, 18 March 2013
Dear Taylor, Thank you very much for your comment, which we will use constructively to improve our service. Indeed, we will have modify our internet site to accurately reflect the information that we e-mailed you concerning linens only be charged for reservation of more than 6 nights. Thanks for your help. Best Regards, Carine & David
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Les Balcons d'Oyster Pond

Property: Les Balcons d'Oyster Pond
Address: 15 Avenue du Lagon, Oyster Pond 97150, St. Maarten-St. Martin
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > St. Maarten-St. Martin > Sint Maarten > Oyster Pond
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Oyster Pond
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Individual bungalows in Caribbean gardens with swimming pool. They are situated on beautiful Oyster Pond with a marvelous view of the marina and sail boats. You will be in a peaceful, quiet, familial and casual ambiance.Our bungalows can accommodate 2 to 5 people. Each unit has a private terrace with splendid view and barbecue grill. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Les Balcons d`Oyster Pond Hotel Oyster Pond

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