Vacation Blog! Sonesta Great Bay, St. Maarten!

Sonesta Great Bay Resort & Spa, Philipsburg, St. Maarten 

In need of some R&R, my mom and I headed south to St. Maarten. She had been before, but this was my first time there. I've always heard amazing things about it, so I had to see what it's all about. Also, being Dutch, I wanted to see how Dutch this place is.We learned that they cannot grow any food on the island, so everything is imported. 

The drive was about 20min from the airport. We landed in the just before lunch so, our room wasn't ready when we arrived. We were given our bracelets and let loose at the buffet. This was probably the best buffet I've been to. Every day was different enough that you weren't bored and everything was tasty and fresh. There were 3 cooking stations and these were different every day. Each dinner, had a different theme, Mexican, Italian, etc. Don't feel like going to the buffet? Dress up a little and go to the a la carte restaurant. No reservations required, no maximum visits - Italian and Seafood.  

Breakfast was the only meal that didn't change. There's your standard omelet station, pancakes, French toast, cereal, oatmeal, fruit, etc....but the real star...was the BACON. Something so simple you can get at home, yet here it was better! I miss it already. The coffee there is excellent. 

Besides the buffet, there was grill overlooking the ocean you could try, Pizzeria Capri. They are famous for their pizza, so get it while it's hot! They also have salads, sandwiches, burgers & hotdogs. Help yourself to pizza and sit down to order the rest. 

The desserts varied, sometimes similar to a Chinese buffet at home and other times downright delicious! They use a lot of fresh fruit and drizzled chocolate in their desserts. Sucked me in every time! 

I only got the chance to go to 1 of the 2 a la carte restaurants. There was some confusion as to where the Italian one was located, but I did visit the steakhouse twice. Dress code is not enforced; some people dressed up, some wore t-shirts. Mildly irritating. Anyway, the appetizers we tried were the Crab Cakes and the Seafood Salad. The crab cakes were yummy; great seasoning and not a ton of filler. The seafood salad was alright; the feta and seafood combo was a bit odd. 

Since the buffet doesn't serve much beef, steak was my selection and my mom picked the Mahi Mahi. The steak was cooked almost to order; part of the steak was thicker and not cooked as well. The gravy was fabulous. My mom ordered the Mahi Mahi on both visits she liked it so much. I couldn't help thinking of the poop emoji when her dish arrived. Heehee! Desserts were OK. I don't recommend ordering ice cream, it tastes freezer burnt. Service was great! 

Chocoholics CANNOT miss the Chocolate Night. On Thursday, behind the lobby bar, is everything you've ever dreamed of. Chocolate martinis, chocolate dipped fruits, chocolate macaroons(THESE ARE AMAZING) and of course, chocolate fondue! This is a night not to miss. The treats go quickly, so be there on time! 

We went on an island taxi tour with Noel and they brought us to a restaurant in Marigot called Sandy's. It's a busy place and we soon found out why. They specialize in Creole and the place was packed. While we waited, we saw plates with large portions going by and some couples were even sharing one plate. My mom went with the Garlic Shrimp and I chose Curry Chicken. My mom enjoyed the shrimp and the sides were a nice touch, the noodles, rice and salad with avocado made this dish a perfect portion. The curry chicken was great! Nice heat and spices along with the beans and rice was a highlight on this trip. The service was quick and knowledgeable about what they serve. I recommend a visit here when you're in the area! 


Overall, the food on this trip was fantastic. I kind of expected it to be great since everything is imported, so the availability of foods was almost the same as home. Although, it was nice not to have to worry about eating anything in fear of getting sick; all tummies were quite content on this vacation!  

If you have any questions about this trip, please comment or email me. 

Until next time, 

Lisa


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