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Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort, Curacao
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Reviews (2,599)
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Reviewed 8 May 2011

My husband and I just returned from a week's vacation at the new Hyatt Regency in Curacao. Wow, what a resort!
First, when we arrived at the Curacao airport, we were instantly met by courteous and friendly Hyatt agents who are ready to escort you. The Hyatt representatives are there to check you in right on site at the airport, and provide you with a cold cloth and chilled bottle of water to refresh you. They actually have their own check-in counter at the airport in shaded lobby. We booked the Hyatt shuttle which was great, as reserving a car is not difficult, but navigating the roads at first may be challenging. We rented a car for a couple days but you really don't need to as the hotel has scheduled visits to Willemstad. We did other excursions off of the resort, so if you plan to explore, you will want your own vehicle and you will want a GPS. Also, Hyatt has a car rental office right on site, which is super convenient!
The hotel itself is superb. When you enter the gates to the plantation, the resort is set back at least a mile or 2 away from the main road. When you pull up to the open air lobby, you sense that you are tucked nicely away from the world, in a very refreshing, secluded way. We were met by Rufi who took our luggage and pointed out the highlights of the resort on our way to our lovely ocean view room. He was very kind and genuinely interested in making us comfortable during our stay. I saw him several days later and he remembered my name.
We ate at Shor and Medi for breakfast/lunch/dinner, as well as Swim for snack items by the pool and midday drinks. At Swim, Ernie and Jaymy were easy to talk to and very friendly, as were everyone. They recommended some great items to try from the menu and we were introduced to a terrific Curacao spice!
I have to say that the food at Shor and Medi was wonderful! Plus, Ryan at Shor and Justina at Medi were so personable and pleasant that it made our dinners that much more enjoyable having a chat with them. Ryan even wrote down several places for us to explore on the island, which was really nice of him. We ate at Medi several times for dinner, and usually sat in Justina's section. We became very friendly with her and felt very sad to say goodbye! That's how welcoming everyone truly is here. You will feel like you have made new friends in a new (gorgeous, oceanfront) home!
Even for breakfast at Medi, nothing is overlooked. The servers are impeccable and you recognize that the Hyatt takes customer service/guest services very seriously . The variety of choices make it easy for anyone to enjoy the start of their day. Peter and Sandro were terrific!
I feel it is necessary to mention the names of those we came in contact with each day as their presence had a lot to do with our experience. I wish I remembered the names of the staff at the pool, as they were terrific too. I was especially impressed by the fact that most of those we met spoke about 4 languages- incredible!
Besides these restaurants, there is also a more casual lunch spot called Bella Italia, for panini sandwiches, pizza, gelato, sweets, etc. It also serves as a convenience store where you can purchase sunscreen, books, refreshments, even alcohol and cigars!
The Hyatt has a Panha store- a skincare and fragrance shop which is high end, as well as a few other resort shops. You really don't need to leave the hotel if you don't want to!
The gym- immaculate. Lots of brand new equipment. They had plenty of machines and weights, plus body bars, medicine balls, jump ropes, mats, etc. The view from any of the stationary machinery was great- I watched hummingbirds flutter above flower bushes against the backdrop of the blue ocean. Beats my gym at home any day! :)
We did not have the opportunity to snorkel/dive, but we visited with the staff at Ocean Encounters and again, everyone was terrific. We had heard that Curacao is a pristine location for superb snorkeling/diving, so although we didn't get the chance to do it, we heard reviews from others that Ocean Encounters is great, and the dive spots are some of the best in the Caribbean.
We had read in advance about this Hyatt, and had been curious about what the shower was all about. Granted, it's an open bathroom, with a door only to the toilet room. The tub is deep, with a half frosted glass door. Strangely enough, the half door provides enough coverage to not soak the bathroom. We thought it was odd at first, but we got use to it pretty fast. The shower does face the door to the room though, so latch the security lock or put the Privacy sign outside if you are showering during housekeeping hours. It's really not a problem. We don't have kids, nor did we share a room with anyone else obviously, but I can only see it being an issue if you have children in the room or have friends popping in. Again, lock the door or send the kids down to the beach. There's plenty to do to keep them occupied.
Speaking of the beach, very quiet, very private. We loved the wild parrots in the trees, the hummingbirds, the funny hermit crabs that got active at night (be careful not to step on them!), and of course, the little lizards and big iguanas! They were awesome. To list all the beautiful birds and amazing island creatures we saw would take forever, but do not overlook the natural inhabitants of this great island. So colorful and stunning!
We spent a lot of time lounging at the pool. The pools areas are very well kept, with friendly towel staff ready to make you comfortable. One morning we actually saw someone hand scrubbing the side of the pool. They take serious care of this resort.
Weather- terrific! You will get a passing drizzle or maybe an hour or so of rain, but it clears up and you have the whole day to bake in the sun. DEFINITELY bring sunscreen. That sun will sizzle you!
I could go on and on, but overall as you can tell we immensely enjoyed this trip. Having been to Aruba and some other Caribbean islands, I thought I knew what to expect, but Curacao was quite a pleasant surprise. If you have Curacao on your radar, you must do the Hyatt. Keep in mind it is off the beaten path, so if you are looking to visit other resorts/restaurants, town, you will need a car. This hotel caters to those looking for a peaceful, relaxing vacation. Hyatt continues to be our #1 choice as they continually exceed our expectations. Thanks to Hyatt, and the amazing Hyatt staff! We will recommend to all, and will definitely be back!

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Meowface1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HyattGuestRelations, Guest Relations Associate at Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort, Curacao, responded to this reviewResponded 9 May 2011

I am so glad that you enjoyed your stay and that our staff provided such excellent service. We are proud of our facility and even more proud of our staff. I will be sure to pass along all the wonderful feedback to all the staff members you mentioned in your review. We have taken great efforts to make our property a home away from home. It sounds like you were able to sample our lovely restaurants Shor and Medi. I am thrilled that your stay with us was an overall success. We appreciated your detailed and wonderful feedback. Thank you for making Hyatt your #1 choice and we look forward to welcoming you back soon!

Brock S. – A Guest Relations Associate

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 May 2011

My wife and I just spent a week at this Hyatt. We were originally booked for 5 nights, but American Airlines cancelled our flight out, so we were "forced" to stay an additional two nights. This one year old Hyatt is just beautiful. Everything is brand new, and the service is very good. If you are looking for a typical Caribbean beach, or a loud party every day and night, this place is not for you. However, if you are looking for a place to relax, read a book, enjoy a nice pool area, and good food, this is the place for you. As others have mentioned repeatedly, this place is somewhat remote, which is just fine with me. We left the property one day to visit Punda on Queen's day, and I was glad to return to the Hyatt that evening. I played golf twice and I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the golf course. The fairways and the greens are all green, with no yellow patches ; nice views too. The only negative about the golf course is the greens do not bite ! My wife and I both used the spa. It was difficult to get convenient times even though we called ahead. In my opinion, the spa is too small for this sized resort.
The rooms are very nice and spacious. When designing the rooms, I would have added a door for the bathroom for some privacy. This makes showering a little awkward. Our departure was very early in the morning. The shuttle bus picked us up at 4:45 am, and we were about a dozen people. They should have a room to offer their guests a complimentary continental breakfast, or at least some coffee, before they head for the airport. If you plan on visiting Curacao, you should definitely consider this Hyatt !

Room Tip: Ask for a room facing the beach or pools.
  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank canuck64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HyattGuestRelations, Guest Relations Associate at Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort, Curacao, responded to this reviewResponded 6 May 2011

Dear canuck64:

I would like to thank you for your feedback in regards to your recent stay at the Hyatt Regency Curacao Golf Resort, Spa & Marina.

We're happy to hear how much you enjoyed our hotel! It sounds as though you were able to enjoy a relaxing vacation. I'm glad you were able to play a couple of rounds of golf on our course. After a round of 18, there is nothing better, than going to the spa, to relax.

Hyatt prides itself in the customer service offered by our employees. We want our guests to feel welcomed. From the moment you arrive, to the departure, it is important that you feel at home, while staying.

We look forward to having you stay with us again! Thank you for choosing Hyatt.

Sincerely,

Nick B. - Guest Relations Associate

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 May 2011

The Hyatt Curacao is a beautiful new resort. The staff really cares and takes great pride in making the stay memorable for the guests. While we really enjoyed our stay, I'd like to point out a few things about the resort:

There is no casino.
There is no hot tub (at least outside by the pools).
The resort is not for those looking for a party scene.
The beach is man-made.
If you do not have a car, cabs can be expensive if you want to dine outside the hotel.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank TripstersAZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2011

We stayed for one week at the Hyatt Regency, Curacao, and enjoyed every minute of it! We had chosen the resort because of other excellent experiences we've had at Hyatt's, and for its quiet location, and we were not disappointed. Hyatt knows how to treat people well, and made every effort to make our stay pleasant. We had arranged airport transportation (online), and the Hyatt representative met us there, guided us to the onsite hotel registration desk, handed us a cool cloth and cold water, and then we were driven to the hotel location, about 40 minutes away. The hotel features a grand open lobby, and we were greeted by staff members, and immediately taken to our spacious, beautifully-decorated room, overlooking the water. "Mem" was the most helpful and friendly bellman that we have ever met! The beach has plenty of shade trees and umbrellas, and lounges for relaxing, and servers from the SWIM restaurant walked the beach to offer drinks, lunch items, from the menu. "Nicky" was a server who was particularly friendly and efficient, and went out of his way to help us feel comfortable. We ate at the Medi restaurant a few times, and were particularly impressed with the Shor restaurant, just a short walk away. The food and service were top notch, and we highly recommend a sunset meal there. We did a half-day excursion to Willemsted, with the hotel-arranged bus transportation, and "Bettina" from the tour desk was most helpful with that. For our needs, we just wanted to relax and have peace and quiet, which we got, so it was perfect. It must be said that the hotel was not very crowded while we were there - about 25% capacity, according to one staff member. We never had to wait for meals, and all service was excellent and prompt. There were plenty of options for water activities, however we didn't participate. I would highly recommend the Hyatt Curacao for a very relaxing and pleasant stay!

Room Tip: Loved room 1442, overlooking the water!
  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank CJK50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HyattGuestRelations, Customer Service Representative at Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort, Curacao, responded to this reviewResponded 25 April 2011

Dear CJK50:

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback in regards to your recent stay at the Hyatt Regency Curacao Golf Resort, Spa & Marina. The location sounds as though this resort was a great getaway. I’m happy to hear the employees were friendly & welcoming. The sunset meal sounds beautiful. We look forward to welcoming you back.

Sincerely,

Nick B. – Customer Service Representative

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Reviewed 20 April 2011

My wife and I recently stayed at the Hyatt for 4 nights. The hotel is very new (1 year) but the staff and service is as polished as a resort that has been open much longer. Our room as well as the rest of property was immaculately clean and the grounds were very well mainted. Overall the design and decor of the Hyatt is beautiful and fits nicely into its surrounding landscape.

The pool area was very attractive but a bit small by some mega resort standards but there was plenty of space and seats to accomadate the number of guests at the hotel during our stay. There is a nice view of the ocean from the pool. Overall we enjoyed our time at the pool very much.

The beach however was a different story. THE BEACH IS NOT ON THE CARRIBEAN. Just want to make sure that's clear to anyone reading this review. The beach is actually on a fairly narrown channel that leads to a bay. There is virtually no view of the ocean from the beach. We found this quite disappointing. Like the rest of the hotel, it is very well maintained and there is plenty seats and shaded areas but its just not the experience one expects when visiting the Carribean. If laying out at the beach is the main focus of your trip then I would recommend staying elsewhere.

Dining at the Hyatt was very enjoyable. We ate at least one meal at both of the resorts restaurants and enjoyed a couple snacks at the pool bar (Swim). Shore (the seafood restaurant) has amazing views and incredibly fresh fish. Our food was delicious and the atmosphere can't be beat. Medi (mediteranean cuisine) offers a great breakfast buffet as well as serving lunch and dinner. Medi is the less expensive of the two and a bit more casual. The food and ambiance are both good but Shore is the place to be.

The hotel's location is about 15 miles from the city and much further from the islands west side attractions, so it is a bit isolated. We definitely appreciated the isolation when we were at the hotel. It becomes a bit of an incovenience when you want to do some exploring. For that reason, my wife and I rented a car w/ gps and had no problem getting around and felt perfectly safe everywhere we went. In my opionion this is a neccesity when staying at the Hyatt if you have any desire at all to explore the rest of the island.

Overall we really enjoyed our stay at the Hyatt. The property is beatiful, the restaurants are good. The rooms are great. The beach and location may rightfully deter some but based on the other properties I researched and saw on our visit to Curacao, the Hyatt seems to be one of the nicest resorts available and we would not hesitate to stay there again.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank jaygasman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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