This hotel is truly amazing, rooms are clean and spacious, everything looks new, the hotel staff is very friendly and helpful. Recommended 100%. Will definitely stay here again in my next trip to curaçaoMore
This hotel is truly amazing, rooms are clean and spacious, everything looks new, the hotel staff is very friendly and helpful. Recommended 100%. Will definitely stay here again in my next trip to curaçaoMoreShow less
Dear Carlos P,
Thank you so much for recommending us! That means a lot to me and I am so glad you enjoyed your stay!
I hope to see you again soon!
We enjoyed our recent visit to Curacao and had actually been considering the concept of making it an annual "escape winter" event. However, there is ONE major disappointment and worrisome concern I must share... We booked our package through Expedia for round trip air tickets, a sea view room at the Santa Barbara for 6 nights, inclusive of a 2 day car rental. We had an issue on arrival because they were going to give us a "non" sea view room and claimed Expedia had made an error in booking costs and all they were prepared to provide us was a standard room. Luckily, I had the print out from Expedia illustrating the entire package inclusive of cost. It took over 30 minutes at check-in to rectify, but they did finally provide us an acceptable room. We were offered a complimentary welcome drink by the lobby bellman as we stood waiting for this situation to be rectified, but he never reappeared with one. Other guest came and went and were provided welcoming drinks, so I imagine they are normally provided.
The weather was spectacular, and we enjoyed the various restaurants on the resort. The pools were over crowded with children, so we spent most of our time on the man-made beach and avoided the pools. The staff was friendly and helpful through out the resort with the exception of the front desk. They seemed unsure and inept. It took three separate people to check us in, and here is the kicker... Upon check-out, we were charged an extra $2100 USD as a hold on our credit card, later to have an extra $824.47 charged incorrectly to our card three days after we checked-out! We have been home over two weeks and complained four times to the resort, twice to our bank, and once to Expedia... and are STILL awaiting a credit to our account to be made by the Santa Barbara. We have been told it was taken care of, but to this minute, it remains as an erroneous charge on my account. Furthermore, there is still a hold of $300 USD on our charge card for the Budget rental car which was part of our package and was returned with a full tank of gas and marked as in perfect order by the desk attendant within the resort.
The resort has finally acknowledged they charge my card in error, and report they have made all credits. However, no credits have come through to my bank as yet. My concern is that these charges were made and it has taken over 1/2 month without restitution. Furthermore, the Santa Barbara has made no effort to make this inconvenience up to us which leads me to believe they have no desire to promote our return or offer any form of service recovery. We were greatly inconvenienced and disappointed this situation still persists. The only other negative of our trip was that on one of the days we were there, the maid cleaned our room and took all the dirty towels for laundry leaving us not one clean towel. She also removed the extra key-card we had for our room from the room. We had to call the front desk to have another key provided to us and it took two calls to get towels delivered so we were able to shower. After our first call only two hand towels were delivered. Our second call we were finally brought two bath towels. The following day our room was properly stocked with the normal amount of towels.
The resort is located in a remote area of the island, so renting a car becomes necessary if you wish to venture to other areas of the island. Just beware of charges and open holds on your credit card.
First, I want to sincerely apologize. It is never our intent to charge incorrectly and I am looking into the situation as I type. If the issues is still not resolved, please message me directly through Trip Advisor as soon as possible. I want to get this resolved ASAP.
As far as general policies go, it is customary in our industry to place a hold on credit cards for guest convenience so you can charge throughout the resort (spa, restaurant, etc). Due to the charges being international, banks tend to take 4-6 working days to release the hold. I always recommend that guests use a credit card, not a debit card when traveling. Because when a hotel/resort places a hold on your debit card, the money comes directly out of your bank account.
Again, I am sorry this issue effected your overall stay with us and please trust that was not our intent. I have met with the department head and are reviewing the training for our front desk team.
I hope you do reconsider making us your annual 'escape winter' event.
We stayed at the Santa Barbara in July of this year, so this review is a little late! I would love to say a few things.
1. We found this place by chance because we decided (on our first trip when we stayed at another hotel) to explore the island. The drive in is spectacular! We loved passing by the marina and all the hills we also love that the hotel is so remote! My fiance and I stayed there, as well as his parents and mine. They all loved it. The first glimpse of the hotel when you walk in is breathtaking and all of us fell in love!
2. That being said, I wish this was an all inclusive! I feel like it is built like one, with the smaller food shops and various bars and restaurants. I would never leave if that was the case. I would love if there was late night entertainment. Being that it IS so remote, it would be nice to have some things to do late night.
3. The service is impeccable. Those who work there are really focused on customer service and seem to be interested in making your stay the best it can be! Curacao is an amazing island, but I find it's truly trying to figure itself out with the tourist industry. This is not the case with Santa Barbara. They are focused and ready to make your stay the best.
I hope this helps some of you. This hotel is picturesque, pristine and wonderful. I can't wait to go there again!!
Dear Julie K,
Thank you for your great review and staying with us during your vacation. Since your stay we've actually starting offering an all inclusive option at the resort. So, guest can choose the package that fits his/her needs the best - an all inclusive or a la carte package.
Thank you so much for the great comment about our service. Our team works very hard to Wow! each of our guests! I hope that we can welcome you back to our resort very soon!
This resort is located in a remote section of Curacao. You don't need to leave the resort as it has almost everything. There are limited resultants on site so you may want to venture out. However it is a drive at least 30 minutes to get to any decent ones. The property has three pools but unfortunately all three allow kids, which is great for families but not so great if you are looking for some quiet time by the pools. We stayed in one of the bungalows which had its own pool (One of the three) too but it was always busy with kids. The gold course is laid out along the ocean and into the hills surrounding the resort. It was in decent shape. If your looking for something to do see Michael Suares at the front desk. He is very helpful and gave us a great recommendation on an offsite restaurant when we inquired about going downtown. Scuba diving was decent as well. Your standard wall dives. We did a couples massage that was very good. Spa is limited in what it has. Didn't see steam room, hot tub or sauna.
Dear William WPB,
Thank you for staying with us and sharing your experiences. I am so glad you enjoyed the golf course. Did you experience the wind on the first few holes along the water? It's a great challenge!
I am so glad that Michael was able to help you and guide you to a couple of our favorite spots! The island has so much to explore.
I hope that we see you again very soon!
My husband and I celebrated our honeymoon in beautiful Curacao from April 20th to 27th, 2014. The weather was perfect the whole week, low 30 degrees Celsius with a continuous breeze! We definitely recommend the all inclusive package from Sunwing. We booked last minute we saved a lot of money for the premier water view room. Flights were on schedule and the bus pick up and drop off were easy to locate and problem free. The bus ride to the resort took 40-45 minutes, but if you take a taxi or rent a car it's only about 30-35 minutes, not that much faster.
During our stay, we were pleasantly taken care of by Ryan and Michael (front desk). Since we were celebrating our honeymoon, Ryan gave us the best possible premier water view room #1435. The room was gorgeous, with no obstruction of view, very close to the beach and faced the pier. Being on the top floor is highly recommended!
After reading a previous review from another honeymooner, she mentioned that she got a free upgrade. So the next day, my husband and I made a request to be upgraded, Michael was able to make it happen. We changed rooms to the Sea Traditions Bungalows which is about 5 minutes or less of a walk from the lobby (depends on how fast or slow you walk) and just steps away from the golf course and Shore restaurant. We had a large golf cart pick us up with our luggage to take us to room #3104. Wow... to the garden with the water view behind it, the rain shower is amazing, the turn down service with replenished water bottles and fresh towels was a nice touch every night. Nothing beats the private pool and how quite this area was. No kids screaming!!! So private, relaxing and peaceful in the section of the resort.
There is no service or facilities at the private pool, so everyday after breakfast we would get fresh beach towels, cold bottled or canned drinks (pop, water, beer) and snacks from Medi or Splash and bring it to our private retreat. Sounds like a bit of work, but it was worth it! Out of the 6 days in the bungalow, we had the pool all to ourselves for 4 days the other 2 days there were 1 or 2 other quiet adults.
We rented a car through Ryan who arranged the rental with Boric Car Rental.This local car rental company is cheaper than Budget. For 24 hrs, we paid $37 US for a small KIA and paid $10 US each for insurance and GPS (a must have, some street have no names) for a total of $67 US. We also had to fill up the tank with gas before returning it. The process was easy, a person from Boric met us in the lobby where we paid and had a car ready for us. When we were done with the car, we parked it near the lobby in the parking lot and drop off the car keys at the front desk.
Everyone was right, the food a Shore was fantastic!!! Try to eat there as much as possible. Must try all the fish starters and entrees (raw and cooked), the beef salad, beet salad and dessert sampler. I found that the seafood bisque and seafood fettuccine were way too salty.
At Splash, the plantain chips were additive and the chicken wings and fish tacos were delicious.
At Medi the bitter ballen, seafood linguine and grilled salmon were tasty. The chocolate bread pudding is to die for! The creme brulee was served cold and the texture was not right, I don't recommend it. We only ate there twice for dinner and once for lunch and the buffet menu was not impressive so we ordered from the a la carte menu. We were also not impressed that during dinner, there was no dress code. People were wearing board shorts, tank tops, baseball caps, ripped jeans, flip flops, etc., while others were dressed in semi formal wear. For such as nice and pretty high end resort this was surprising.
Unfortunately near the end of our trip we got bored with the breakfast buffet at Medi. Everyday was pretty much the same, only 1 day there was french toast instead of pancakes and the fruits were always the same (pineapple, cantaloupe, honey dew, watermelon and bananas), maybe 2 days there were apples and tangerines.
In regards to daily activities, they are not very interesting and repetitive. One day we wanted to feed the iguanas which was scheduled at 3 pm, we confirmed the location, waited 10 minutes and no one showed up so we left, this was disappointing. For the price, Wi-Fi should be available in all the rooms at no additional cost. Free Wi-Fi was available only in the lobby. My husband loved the gym, cool, clean, great equipment and never busy.
The beach is lovely but small and divided by the pier, it's not like the beaches in other Caribbean island where you can swim far. We are beach people and were disappointed by this. However, we did like that you can see a variety of fish, so bring your own goggles and snorkels. For better beaches and snorkeling we went to Jan Thiel which was way too touristy for us and Cas Abao which was less touristy, large and gorgeous! Both beaches had a $6 US entrance fee and $3 US for a lounge chair. Bring your own towels, drinks and food because it was very pricey.
At night it would have been nice to have live music every day with local/cultural music instead of classical as an example. Also, for the lobby bar to be open later than 11 pm, we suggest extending it to a least midnight.
Overall, the hotel was so beautiful that we think it would be more suitable as an adults only resort. Despite that there was not a lot of activities/facilities for children, there sure was a lot of them. Which was why we were so happy to have access to a super quiet and private pool when we had enough of them at the main pool and beach. We also didn't know that kids had 2 weeks off from school for Easter and Victoria Day.
Shout outs to our wonderful servers Rosemary (Medi & Shore), Lucas (Shore) and Chantel (Medi), thank you for your food recommendations and the great conversations. Ryan and Michael for getting us the best rooms, helping us with our excursions and great customer service. You all made our honeymoon unforgettable.
T & K
Dear Tanya N,
First, congratulations on your recent nuptials. I wish you both many years of happiness!
Second, thank you for such a great review. You really covered all aspects of the resort. After I read your comment about the plantain chips from Splash, I am wondering if it's time for lunch. I like those too!
I apologize about your experience with the iguanas and will definitely bring some of your suggestions to our next staff meeting. Thank you for your feedback.
Thank you so much for staying with us for your honeymoon and I hope we can welcome you back to celebrate for years to come!
My husband and I traveled to Curacao for the first time Easter weekend 2014. We stayed at Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort from April 19th-22nd. We rented a car from the airport and drove ourselves to the location of resort. The resort is about 40 minutes from the airport. Driving was a bit tricky because we were not familiar with the roads, yet once we arrived...we were delightfully impressed.
The lobby was grand and open-air, we could hear the sound of the waves and feel the refreshing breeze as we were greeted by Rudolph. He made us feel welcomed right away with a nice smile and welcome drink in hand for us.
Michael Suares took care of getting us checked in right away & made sure we were well taken care of throughout our stay. He went out of his way to make sure we had the proper driving directions and maps so that we could go to the Blue Room (dive/snorkel hole). The staff at this resort was very attentive and pleasant. They all made us feel "at-home". Agmeth was always there checking on us to make sure we had everything that we needed.
We were impressed with our room, it was very clean, spacious and modern. We had a room with a king size bed, balcony with table and chairs, mini-fridge (stock yourself or order room service to fill with beverages), bathroom with shower and separate toilet area for privacy. The bed was very comfortable.
We explored the resort grounds...many little yellow-bellied birds (aka "sugar-thief"), bright colored flowers along walkways, lagoon for swimming and snorkeling, and a dock that leads you to the marina. The beach area was beautiful and has many pieces of coral along shoreline...do not attempt to walk this journey without some type of shoes or sandals...however the view of the most turquoise waters was well worth the walk. there is a constant tropical breeze at all times, so we never felt "too hot".....it was just PERFECT! The pool area was nice, wasn't an issue trying to get lounge chairs..there seemed to be plenty. Since we had the all-inclusive package, we enjoyed lunch by the pool and breakfast at Medi (buffet). The food was very good, better than most all-inclusive resorts we have explored. We had dinner twice at The Shore restaurant (also part of our inclusive package)...the food there was phenomenal! I recommend the carribean mahi mahi, it was so fresh and tasty!
We indulged at the Atabei Spa for a couples hot stone massage. It was the nicest spa and best service that we have experienced. Susan greeted us and gave us a tour of the spa facility, which was very impressive. We had our own private couples suite- with a private changing room, a private shower outside..al fresco and our own private cabana outside connected to the spa suite. Yvonne & Rubiela were amazing---best massages ever!!
We drove to Willemstad to see the Queen Emma floating bridge & colorful shops and buildings (only 20 mins from the resort), beautiful photo ops!! We also drove to Santa Cruz about an hour away, to The Blue Room. Captain Goodlife took care of us there...he showed us the whimsical Blue Room. This is a MUST SEE!!! If you like to dive or snorkel...go to the BLUE ROOM!
The people of curaçao are so friendly. They speak four different languages..very diverse yet perfectly blended! My husband and I plan to visit again, and next time we will bring our kids to enjoy the beauty of CURACAO!!!
Thank you for your review and recognizing members of the team who made your stay a delight! I am so glad that you explored the Blue Room. It definitely is a 'must do' for guests who like to snorkel.
I do want to clarify that our swimming beach is soft white sand and you don't need shoes to enjoy the beach. However, the area in front of the resort, which is a no swimming area, does have coral and is fun to explore with shoes or sandals. Kids find this area fun to investigate!
I hope that we can welcome you back again very soon!