reviews for: listing #8069 - St Martin/Maarten, Caribbean House rental

Beachfront Luxury Villa stunning ocean views
  • bedrooms  6
  • pool  yes
  • type  House
  • baths 
  • hot tub  no
  • community 
  • sleeps  14
  • pets allowed  no
  • rates (USD) $1,995 - $5,900 /wk

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Review submitted: May 16, 2009   Date of arrival: March 30, 2009

My husband and I had the most amazing family vacation at La Perla. The house is designed so each family has their separate sleeping quarters. My husband and I stayed in what was called Madame Gucci's private quarters. Private deck, gorgeous ocean view with a glorious morning sunrise. It's a wonderful family setup for families with little ones.
The location is unbeatable with crazy views of St. Barts and beautiful harbour views off to the left. Definitely don't miss a day trip over to St. Barts!
Nicely and newly decorated, with a designers eye to detail, includes all the high tech amenities, so easy for large family entertaining. Although, my husband and I have rented just the main house for the two of us and had one of the most scrumptiously romantic weeks ever!
Walk down your private steps to your own silky white sand beach. Also just a short walk down the beach to a great restaurant, surburb breakfasts and the Carribean Lobster or the Spaghetti Bolognaise is a definite must have with a little Rum Punch for dinner. Then it's a nice stroll back to the villa for an after dinner drink in the gorgeous infinity pool with the warm breezes and island lights of
St. Barts off in the distance, so romantic!
Staying at La Perla is definitely like taking a page from Life of the Rich and Famous, with the old world style that only The Gucci family could provide.

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, pet-friendly, sight seeing, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 28 / 28


Vacation Nightmare Property

Review submitted: June 4, 2014   Date of arrival: April 26, 2014

We were greeted with a GREEN pool - algae growing in the drains, dirt/debris collected on the bottom hadn’t been vacuumed in weeks, and dirt and tree fallings) on all the patio’s. Metal pool furniture was severely rusted, cushions deteriorated, white plastic furniture grey with mildew, and most potted plants are dead. Promised pool service did not happen .
Inside: Promised but not working - WIFI, TV access, computer, majik jack phone, use of 2 cell phones w/ 15 min–1 cell phone, no time. Microwave did not heat, the oven did not work, 2 range burner smoked severely and occasionally shot a burst of flame, icemaker did not work. We were promised paper towels, toilet paper, trash bags, cleaning supplies, and soap for the showers – not present. 1 hair drier for 6 baths. 1/3rd lights did not work. Air conditioning did not work in 1 desirable bedroom.
Safety and cleanliness. Bathroom floors were dirty, mirrors not cleaned. The cleaner did laundry in cold water without soap…I can only hope that there was soap the week before for sheets. She left a load of laundry in the washer …just sitting there. Many sharp edges around the pool - tiles have pulled away, mortar deteriorated, many light sockets hang from wires, water squirts from pipes on the side of the house and pool pump, many pool pipes leak. A stream of water runs downhill and the pool 1-2 inches daily. The infinity feature does not work - return pipe has a large hole in it. Beach gate is broken … we had to chase away several people.
What did the caretaker have to say about these deficiencies when he arrived about 3 hours after us? “The owner is a cheap b__st_rd, and you get what he provides. Complain to him and I’ll fix it if he tells me to.” He provided no info on the house and only one set of keys. I got Email from the owner after I wrote him saying he have the caretaker fix the problems…never saw the caretaker or evidence of effort.
Bottom line: Great view (if you can get past the green pool and patio wreck) and good location. Layout of bedrooms allows little privacy, you have to walk through one bedroom to get to another and the servicing bath. Some bathroom walls in shared spaces don’t go to the ceiling. We only used 3 bedrms and privacy was hard. Maintenance is abysmal, safety especially for kids is bad-nothing will likely get better. I would not believe anything the owners of this place say. I have rented houses in the Carribean and Mexico 8 times, this is the worst.

Helpful votes: 4 / 4

Guest Comment entered by owner

We prefer Dawns beach side of the island

Review submitted: January 2, 2014   Date of arrival: December 10, 2013

Nice of you to ask us how we enjoyed our vacation on St. Martin, so we're happy to report it was a great stay.

In years past we usually stayed in the high rises near the airport, but that place is now looking like Miami Beach and is too crowded and noisy.

We always liked Dawns beach for a day trip so this time we decided to stay there and found your house listed on Homeaway.

Dawns beach is quiet, the people very friendly and that little beach bar Ms. Busby's got a workout from us, sometimes at breakfast, often at lunch, every day at happy hour and one night for dinner. At night they put tableclothes and move the tables onto the beach which is very romantic with little lanterns for lighting.

Your house has a magnificent location and walking down those few stairs to go swimming in the ocean you get very spoiled.

The kitchen is pretty small but equipped well enough so we used the gas grille on the patio most nights.

One night we had a caterer come you had recommended and they did a great job.

One bedroom had an issue with the air conditioning but we called your caretaker who came over and fiddled with it until it started working.

the ocean breezes were pretty good so we probably didn't need the A/C

Appreciate the brand new sheets your cleaning lady brought over along with a bunch of oversized towels.

Yes, our vacation was restful and everything we wanted it to be so while we've been to other Caribbean islands, I think St. Maarten has more to do and more to offer than the Virgin Islands

For people who've never been to SXM, staying near the airport may seem convenient but the hustle and bustle destroys the slow pace of Caribbean living. We now prefer the Oyster Cove section of Dawns beach so your house is certainly well sited.

Many thanks for the enjoyable stay at your lovely home.

Please keep us on your mailing list as we may be able to take advantage of a cancellation special on short notice.

Barb and Sam

Helpful votes: 4 / 4

Guest Comment entered by owner

Great spot on the beach

Review submitted: January 2, 2014   Date of arrival: December 2, 2013

Hi John, You asked me to write a review of our stay so I'm happy to say we enjoyed the house and island of SXM immensely.

The highlights of course is the fact that we're right on the beach at your house and the stairs were easy to navigate as they were not steep. It's only about 60-70 feet from the pool deck to Dawns Beach where the waves are generally pretty gentle and there's no undertow at all.

The pool got a lot of usage as well and though we stayed a few years ago in another house on Dawn beach that only had a dipping pool, having a larger pool where you can swim laps is very nice.

The house furniture you recently purchased is just OK but I understand you pointed out in your information packet that wet bathing suits destroyed the former leather furniture.

Computer was nice with the Magic jack for free calls. Wifi coverage was a bit spotty throughout the house but worked well on the patio where we parked ourselves much of the time.

I must say the views are just as you said they were, and the ocean views are panoramic from every one of the 6 bedrooms.

We enjoyed the food on the island, eating in one night and then going out for dinner the next. Captain Oliver's which is very close to your house was quite good though it's technically on the french side it was more American in menu style but the seafoods and salads were excellent so we went there twice.

Another night we went to one of the many fine French restaurants in Marigot though I forget the name, it was excellent.

You say there's 37 beaches on the island and we probably visited most of them. After Dawns beach, we liked orient beach the best though if nudity bothers you, then the french side beaches might not be to your liking.

The girls did lots of shopping on both the Dutch and French sides, often bargaining and some high fashion clothing on the French side they enjoyed.

The new airport is easy to get into and out of so we rented a car right there for a bargain price of just $ 400 for the week for a suv type of vehicle.

All in all a great and relaxing vacation and we'd like to return to your house and the island in the spring when rates drop again.

We had a total of 10 guests to split the cost so it was quite affordable.

Best regards, Tom and Lucy

Helpful votes: 2 / 2

Guest Comment entered by owner

enjoying our stay

Review submitted: December 11, 2013   Date of arrival: November 16, 2013

hi Carrie,

I'm writing this on your computer here, and wow is it hot here today. I'm in the bedroom with the A/C on so it's not bad, but the ocean breezes seem to cut down the humidity so Jim and I are going for a long walk along the beach, then hanging by the pool.

We love the house and location. We did have a problem with the refrigerator so Alvo had the repair guy come and fill it with coolant so thankfully we have cold drinks and ice again. He's very helpful by the way. And his wife did a nice job cleaning the house since we arrived early.

The house is nice and spacious so we've eaten outside on the patio every night and you're right about the ocean views. They are panoramic and beautiful. The island is a great place, people friendly, many beaches we've explored and tomorrow we're following your guide word file and going on a snorkeling boat trip with free cocktails of course. This has been a bargain vacation since your fall rates are so much less than other times of the year so we think we'll make November a regular time to take a week off. Cheap airfare this time of year also and we were able to get a direct flight so we were on dawns beach by noon. Thanks again for sharing your lovely home with us and please post these comments on your website.

Sincerely, Susan R.

Recommended for: pet-friendly

Helpful votes: 2 / 2

Guest Comment entered by owner

Just an amazing location and terrific beach-front

Review submitted: October 4, 2013   Date of arrival: September 21, 2013

Inside this big 6 BR house is nothing super luxurious though the caretaker did inform us we were sleeping on sheets he just bought which were nice and silky, along with big new fluffy towels which we took to Dawns beach, just a few steps away from the pool as they say. And what a beautiful beach that is. One of the very best in the Caribbbean and we've been to many island.

the house is well equipped though the kitchen is small but very functional though we did much of the cooking outdoors on the new gas grille which worked very well.

You want to rent this house for the amazing views, sleeping of up to 14 people even though we were only a party of 4 we paid much less as your fee is determined by the number of guests so it is a bargain for a small group like ours. We only used two of the master Bedrooms as the house actually has 4 masters.

The views are everywhere as advertised on their website, with 180 degrees from the patio where you could hold a huge function if you wanted to. The lounge chairs were comfortable, the house very clean though a few more outdoor umbrellas would have been nice (the caretaker said they often blow away in storms as it can get pretty windy being right on the ocean).

Each bedroom also has excellent ocean views, and 2 of them have a private patio and most bedrooms have their own bathroom which is very convenient.

The Westin hotel is a short walk away if you want their amenities though at $ 8 per beer, no thanks.

A better bet is to walk on the beach to the left of the house and visit Ms. Busby's beach bar where you'll meet some interesting characters and they serve 3 meals a day. They go gourmet at night with tablecloths and it's very impressive food, especially the lobsters. it's bunk that Caribbean lobsters don't taste as good as cold water ones up north. One night we went to Grand Case a 20 minute drive for an outstanding French meal with reasonably priced French wines (which is amazing to get a good wine for 35 bucks)

We had a wonderful relaxing vacation, and this location simply cannot be topped anywhere on the island. The interior is a bit worn in some places but who cares as you'll spend your time outdoors on the patio, reading your Ipad as they have wi-fi, relaxing, and swimming in the generous sized pool which was sparkling clean as the guys came twice that week to add chemicals and didn't notice our wives laying their topless. I guess they're used to nudity on SXM !

Helpful votes: 2 / 2


Best View On Dawn Beach

Review submitted: October 4, 2013   Date of arrival: September 7, 2013

A group of four couples stayed here Sept 7-14. The view is very special. It is the best thing about this property. We spent most of our time in and around the pool when we were at the house.As this was St. Maarten we took day trips around the island. if you do plan to cook the stop at the big market in Phillipsburg on the way to the house. The kitchen is ok, but the frig does not cool well. Make sure that you buy an ice chest and stock it everyday with drinks for the day. Ice can be bought at the little store next to Mr. Busby's.We filled the cooler everyday and kept it by the pool for easy access. everyone should know that this house is in need of repair. This is not a luxury home.In fact the paint is peeling off in some of the rooms.Also, he property man will meet you on the first day,and we never saw him again. I did need gas for the grill and emailed John who did get someone to bring gas. Just know that the pictures are of the outside because that is the best part of this house. I will say that you do receive a good value for your money with this house. Just know what you are paying for. We have stayed on Dawn Beach two time before and did pay more.

Recommended for: families with teenagers, sight seeing

Helpful votes: 1 / 1

Guest Comment entered by owner

Incredible house and views. we love St. Maarten

Review submitted: September 8, 2013   Date of arrival: September 6, 2013

Carrie, just a short note to tell you we had a superb vacation at your villa on St. Martin. Being beach front really spoiled us. With 4 couples splitting the bill, it was a pretty affordable vacation as we took most of our meals at your house, dining outside. You were right about the views. They're a perfect ten. Dawns beach is fantastic and the little beach bar there sells beers for a buck during happy hour and is quite popular. nice to just walk about 100 yards from that beach bar to your house. The wi fi was nice as sitting on the deck with our ipads and looking over to the island of St. barts is mesmerizing. Really had a great time and we'll be back to this beautiful island and your beach house. Sandra M.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0


Killer Views, Beach at your Feet

Review submitted: August 28, 2013   Date of arrival: August 10, 2013

I stayed with a group of nine people celebrating several of our 40th birthdays Aug. 10-17, 2013 and we all had a spectacular time. A few highlights:

The back patio/pool area offers quintessential tropical ocean views with St. Bart’s visible in the distance. The living/dining area and bedrooms also have nice views. The pool was relaxing and clean, and also features a nice ledge to take in the ocean views.

The bedrooms worked fine for our group. Nobody felt crowded and the a/c was effective. While the spacious common areas aren’t air conditioned, we found that opening the front door and back sliding doors created a comfortable cross breeze that we complemented with the ceiling fans.

Dawns Beach is easily accessed by walking down the backyard stairs and out the private gate. The beach was outstanding … clean and not at all crowded. You get some nice waves on this side of the island, too. Nothing overpowering but enough for bodysurfing if you’re patient.

Mr. Busby’s beach bar is a quick walk down the beach. Nice folks, good food (try their pizza) and cheap beers. We took full advantage of the $1 Amstel Brites during the day. Mr. Busby’s shifts to more upscale dining in the evening, which we enjoyed one night.

Next door to Mr. Busby’s is the Oyster Bay Beach Resort, which offers a couple of nice restaurants and remarkably friendly staff. You can also find an ATM and small market (the market is convenient, but the prices are much steeper than if you were to drive to one of the larger grocery stores).

The location itself worked out really well, particularly as we rented cars. It’s on the Dutch side of the island but less than a mile from the French side. We found it easy to take numerous day trips across the entire island.

I highly suggest BZH Creperie for breakfast, just over the French side in Oyster Bay. Well worth it.

Alvo, the caretaker was friendly and helpful. He met us at the house when we arrived and provided a thorough walk-through. He noted that the cable TV was out and stopped by with the cable box from his house to test it before arranging for the cable company to come over and repair a line outside.

The kitchen had everything we needed and was fully functional. There’s also a gas grill on the back patio. We took advantage of both for home-cooked meals.

There’s Wi-Fi available at the house. It’s not accessible everywhere, but if you situate yourself in the dining room area you should be fine.

Owners response: These guests were very pleasant to deal with an left the place spotless. Nice folks the caretakers told me. John the owner.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0



Review submitted: August 24, 2013   Date of arrival: July 20, 2013

Well let me first say, the veiw is to die for! But as we all know ,that only can take you so far.
Our family of 12 was not that impressed at all with the house, care givers or attitude of owner. Once we got to the house the caregiver was not helpful at all answering our questions, he wanted to gives us the keys and go, and we were told he did not work Sunday the next day so not to call him.
Sunady we found out that the grill was out of propane, we call, we got it 3 days later, Refrig. would not keep anything cool so we bought 3 ice chest and bought ice all week to keep food and drinks in, called, was told to unplug,wait plug in...didn't work. no light in one bedroom, cord was cut off. 50% of bulbs in house, out or didnt work. Microfiber furniture in living room smelt like wet dog (not ocean freindly.TV not the one in photo, but doesnt matter, cable didnt work. Furniture was broke and most of it falling apart.Windows caulked shut, window missing in upstair bedroom had plywood in it, rained came in, woke up to water standing on floor, luggage was on floor wet, bedspread wet. Adjusted shower head, it feel off. Captions under photos in ad are at best 50% miss leading. We took pics but not allowed to post or give our contact info.
The island was nice and the beaches are to die for!!
If four grand down the tube is for you....this is your place.

Owners response: The prior guests turned the refrigerator up to 100% which caused the compressor to shut down and leak water. turning it back down to normal 70% setting fixed the problem and food and drinks were plenty cold though we leave some coolers and ice for guests who want their drinks and beers super cold. We just replaced several pieces of furniture abused by guests whose kids were obviously jumping on nice leather chairs. The cable tv goes out often and we can't control that, after all, this is the Caribbean and this happens. the house is spotless, the views to die for, we have a huge pool over looking the ocean and guests in there last week said they had the best vacation of their life (in the best setting) and when I say the ocean views are a perfect 10, I mean a perfect ten. The huge patio overlooking the ocean has hosted many gorgeous weddings. If you want the Ritz Carlton styled furniture, sorry, there is not one on the island but our guests spend less than $ 60 per night per guest which is the biggest bargain of modern times for an ocean front house, bank appraised at $ 3 million. Staying at a mediocre hotel room with beach access and you'll pay 3-4 times per guest per night what our big beautiful house works out to as our house can sleep 14. Yes we have designer sheets, huge towels which guests often leave on the beach and have to be replaced every few weeks, and we always have to buy new outdoor furnishings as people take our nice chaise lounges to the beach a few steps away, and guess what....they never come back. At $ 200 per chaise lounge this is not nice to us and very unfair but happens regularly and we don't go chasing guests for abuse of premises fees. Notice most recent reviews are 4 or more stars so some people you just can't please, and they don't realize a bargain for an oceanfront house when they have 10-14 people in there. try putting a dozen people in the Westin hotel and you'd be paying $ 3 grand a night vs. our $ 600 per night avg. big difference.

Helpful votes: 3 / 6


Gorgeous beach location

Review submitted: April 14, 2013   Date of arrival: March 23, 2013

Hi Carrie,

Wanted to let you know your place on St. Maarten is our favorite vacation destination as this was our third stay with you.

We love the island and the friendly people, but just hanging around your pool with the views of the ocean was so relaxing. Glad you finally added wi fi so I could read my Ipad on that patio and gaze up at the ocean and beach.

Had a few problems with the kitchen stove but finally figured it out as I see it's new this year and propane, not electric like the previous one.

Hope to get back to your home for the fall when rates go down as well as airfare costs.

best personal regards, Nancy Olsen

Owners response: wonderful repeat guests. left the place clean as a whistle

Helpful votes: 2 / 2


A Private Get-Away

Review submitted: January 12, 2012   Date of arrival: December 27, 2011

A beautiful, architecturally designed house overlooking the beach was a perfect setting for our extended family gathering. The house acomodated 12 of us very comfortably. It does have a lot of tile stairs, which some of the older members were careful to navigate. The property was very clean and relatively well maintained. The pool and patio were simply magnificent and we spent a lot of time there enjoying the wonderful breezes. The kitchen was relatively well equipped, although somewhat short on serving dishes for a large group. Nearby Oyster Bay provided easy access to restaurants and routine groceries. All in all, a great vacation.

Recommended for: families with teenagers, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 1 / 2


Great vacation in the tropics

Review submitted: August 26, 2011   Date of arrival: August 9, 2011


You asked me to write a review so I'm happy to do so as we've stayed in several of your other homes in recent years, including the VT and NH ski houses

We had an incredible time at your ocean-front house on St. Maarten.

We were 2 families plus kids and the big house worked very well, especially having a/c in the bedrooms

The location is incredible with views over the beach, and your brochure is right, Dawns beach is truly outstanding.

the house was very nice, we had a king bed and our own bathroom and the views from the upper floors of the beach and ocean were stunning.

The enormous patio was the real hit as we cooked outside most nights, ate lunch on the patio near the pool and of course had a lengthy cocktail hour or two every day at sunset. I could live on that patio overlooking the palm trees and ocean

the house and setting are incredible so it was a great vacation for us and we'd like to be back next year, maybe the winter next time.

You should be aware the new stove is tricky to light the oven as I guess it's gas your caretaker explained, and one very rainy day some water leaked in through one of the windows but it was a torrential downpour and only lasted an hour, and then the sun was out again.

regards, Jen

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, romantic getaway

Owners response: These guests were delightful and left the house spotless, as they found it.

Helpful votes: 5 / 5

Guest Comment entered by owner

Review submitted: May 25, 2011   Date of arrival: May 14, 2011

Hi John and Carrie

We just returned from our best vacation ever. Beautiful island, nice people and a superb house.

You were right about spending time on the patio over-looking the ocean. The views were panoramic and we were there in the lounge chairs quite often.

Had a little trouble with the gas grille as it was windy so we moved it to the side and worked fine.

St. Martin has so much to do. We visited the French side beaches as your info packet suggested, had dinner in Grand Case at a terrific beach-front restaurant, and visited the butterfly farm. Rented snorkel gear several days and one day took a boat out to a small island which was lots of fun and met many interesting tourists, some from Europe.

St. Martin is very international and very friendly so it's our favorite Caribbean destination.

Staying at an ocean-front house though really has me spoiled. thankfully, my sister and brothers shared the cost with the 6 bedrooms so we didn't spend all that much money.

best vacation we've ever enjoyed.

many thanks to you and Alvo the caretaker who was very pleasant. Best regards, Paula S.

Helpful votes: 3 / 3

Guest Comment entered by owner

loved our St. Martin vacation

Review submitted: May 14, 2011   Date of arrival: March 5, 2011

Thanks so much for sharing your beautiful home with us and our friends.

We had a party of 12 people but the house worked well for such a large group.

Dawns beach is beautiful and walking there each morning for a swim was a great way to start the day. We'll be back to this island and one of your 2 houses this fall again we discussed. Maybe the other house next time up on the hill as those views looked pretty nice when we walked up there.

take care, Cassie

Helpful votes: 4 / 5

Guest Comment entered by owner

thanks so much

Review submitted: May 14, 2011   Date of arrival: April 16, 2011

Hi John and Susan. Awesome time we had !

After renting your New Hampshire ski house the past few winters, we decided to try the Caribbean and had a superb time.

The house was terrific, gorgeous pool and views like you said.

Had a few power failures while there but no big deal. Each lasted about an hour during the day.

We just sat outside on the decks reading mostly. I brought my I pad after you told us you installed wi-fi and it worked well though it's so sunny and bright, you really can't see the screen too well unless under an umbrella.

Travelled to the French side one day to visit (naked) orient beach which my husband rather enjoyed. The food places on that beach are outstanding, even including fine french wines and champagnes served right on the sand. We rented jet skis which was a first and pretty easy.

The people on the island were very friendly and your care-taker Alvo a real nice guy who helped us get the gas grille going.

We had a terrific time. It's a beautiful island and very international as we noted a lot of European accents.

See you next year back at the ski house in December as usual so we'll be in touch to book.

Our best, Bertie and Herman Schwartz

Helpful votes: 5 / 5

Guest Comment entered by owner

Great vacation for our family

Review submitted: May 14, 2011   Date of arrival: April 2, 2011

Carrie and John

Wanted to tell you how much we loved your St. Maarten house and our family vacation. Yes we did split the cost with another couple and their 2 kids but the house with 6 bedrooms was plenty spacious.

You're right about the patio and views because that's where we camped out when not on the beach. Dawns beach is one of the world's finest as your website says, no undertow, small waves and perfect sand. That little beach bar Ms Busby's is terrific also and we walked down there for lunch several days.

But just looking out the bedroom windows at that beautiful blue ocean was heavenly. Staying right on the ocean with a big pool gets you very spoiled.

Grilling fish and BBQ meats on the patio at sunset was my favorite cooking experience ever. Fresh red snapper was excellent and I think we had it almost every day from the big supermarket you pointed us to. Made a lot of drinks from rum but I think that sugar in it gives me a headache so I switched to local beers after a few days. The local rum is like 2 bucks a bottle

It did rain 2 days and boy, when it rains there, it pours, but it didn't last too long so we drove 5 miles into Phillipsburg and did some shopping and people watching. 4 cruise ships were in so the town was bustling.

Went out to dinner to Captain Olivers as you suggested and it was pretty good and casual for the kids, right on the water.

We'll be back to St. Maarten next year for sure.

Many thanks for your accomodations and fine home

regards, Bill and Helen

Helpful votes: 4 / 5


Outstanding beachfront spot

Review submitted: November 12, 2010   Date of arrival: October 30, 2010


We had a great time at your big house on the beach on St. Maarten. The location is dreamy and most nights we all just sat on the patio gazing at the ocean and jumping in the pool.

Having the computer free phone to call home was a nice perk and your caretakers were very friendly and accomodating.

One of our best vacations ever, and you certainly get spoiled staying ocean-front with such a nice beach as Dawns beach.

Regards, Jack

Recommended for: adventure seekers, families with young children, families with teenagers, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 1 / 4

Guest Comment entered by owner

Wonderful Vacation. thanks so much

Review submitted: November 11, 2010   Date of arrival: November 4, 2010

Carrie and John,

Since you asked me to write about my vacation last week, here goes.

Best time of our lives.

we had never been to the Caribbean before so to get off that plane at the SXM airport and see the gorgeous ocean was really something.

We loved your house and the beach right there.

We also walked the half mile to check out your other house up in Dawns beach estates. Quite a view you have there, but we like being right on the water with the ocean a stone's throw away.

Your housekeeper and his wife were very charming and got us some local groceries the first day as we didn't feel like hitting the supermarket.

We had dinner at a little French place not far from Capt. Olivers which was very good and had an outdoor pool also.

Mostly we cooked on the gas grille on the patio and just gazed at the ocean and the beach.

The views are just tremendous and our cocktail time began at 4pm and lasted more than a few hours. Love those local rums. So inexpensive also.

Having air conditioning in the bedrooms is essential this time of year so we did use it every night. and yes, we followed your signs and did conserve water you'll be glad to know.

I have a high pressure job to staying in a luxury house on the ocean was very relaxing and I enjoyed doing most of the cooking outdoors for our party of 3 couples.

Next time we'll probably bring the kids and let them skip school for a long weekend while we stay the full week.

We took a day trip to Anguilla which was very tranquil, though I think I might get bored there staying more than a few days. some nice restaurants over there however worth visiting.

speaking of restaurants, next time we'll take your advice and visit a few on the French side as we did stop for a glass of wine while shopping and checked out their menus. they look very good.

Thanks again for a great vacation. Tell John I'm sorry about the loss of his wife as I read about it on your website.

Best personal regards,

Karen S.

Helpful votes: 4 / 5

Guest Comment entered by owner

Thanks for a nice stay

Review submitted: November 11, 2010   Date of arrival: October 27, 2010


I wanted to drop you a note to tell you what a great stay we had at your St. Maarten house.

The ocean front location has me spoiled forever.

We spent most of our time outside and down the few steps to Dawns beach and you were right about it being one of the most beautiful in the world.

the pool was wonderful and just the right temp since the sun hits it all day, plus the ocean water temp was just as I like it. Near 80 this time of year.

We took a snorkel boat trip to a small island which was a wonderful half day

and We did take out BBQ from Johnny Be under the Tree, a roadside stand but the best I've ever had.

We'll be in touch again and will probably book your fall special again for next year.

My best,


Helpful votes: 3 / 5


Beautiful location on a great beachfront

Review submitted: November 1, 2010   Date of arrival: September 18, 2010

My wife and I plus the three kids had a great stay at this ocean-front property so the owner asked us to write a brief review. My wife gives this place 5 stars but 4 stars to me is quite good.

The patio is to die for. A place to sit and watch the ocean with 180 degree views surrounding you. I sat there with my cocktail after 4pm each day and didn't want to move.

The pool is also very nice, oversized for the Caribbean they tell me and it's just a bunch of stairs down to Dawn beach which is fabulous. There's a beach bar called Ms. Busby's which serves food and becomes gourmet at night.

The house is nice and clean but the furniture I thought a bit dated though functional. Kitchen is a bit small but didn't matter much since we cooked outside on the grille every night, lots of grilled fish local of course.

The views are tremendous and we'll definitely be back to St. Martin. You get pretty spoiled staying at a beachfront location of course.

Recommended for: age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 5 / 5


Amazing location

Review submitted: October 30, 2010   Date of arrival: September 18, 2010

Joan and I had a great stay at this oceanfront house with our three kids and several of their friends.

The house location is incredible, just a few feet from a beautiful Caribbean beach called Dawn beach. The patio and pool is where you want to spend time with the 180 degree views.

The house was very nice and clean, though I thought the furniture a bit dated. Beds were king and had nice silky linens.

Apparently you have to conserve water on the island as there are message taped to the walls to do so, but I guess that's Caribbean living.

the owners just put in a big plasma tv in the living room with cable channels and we enjoyed the wi fi internet using our I pad out by the pool.

You can also walk to a nice beach bar restaurant just a short stroll to the left side of the beach called Ms Busby's. Very good and cheap drinks at happy hour.

but this house is so nice I don't think you'll want to leave the patio and deck overlooking the ocean. I just sit there with a cocktail and look out at the palm trees and ocean and it's gorgeous.

Recommended for: families with young children, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 3 / 3


Pictures are worth ???

Review submitted: October 26, 2010   Date of arrival: October 16, 2010

The landscaping has overgrown, which breeds massive amounts of mosquitos who are resistant to bug spray, and there were only 2 small citronella candles, without hurricane globes to keep candles lit.
No drapes or hurricane shutters are on the master suite or room above the kitchen, which does not allow you to sleep much past 5:30 or 6 a.m. each day.
1st day there, the property manager came by to check to see if all was ok, there was a problem with one of the air conditioners in one of the suites. He couldn't fix it, and when he left, he took the house cell phone with him, leaving us only the internet as a way to connect with our friends on the island.
Finally, when the freezer went out, (yes, it had food in it that we had purchased) we contacted the leasing company and mentioned that the phone had disappeared.
The property manager came by the next morning while we were not there and fixed the freezer was fixed as well as returning the phone. He left the gate to the property open, and that left our personal property at risk for theft. We did not hear from the property manager any other time until he came by the property on Saturday amwhich was the day the owner was coming in town.

The air conditioning unit in the room above the kitchendid not work well, and once the sun was up, the room became warm. It was only cool in the early hours of the morning b4 the sun came up. It rained a couple of days there was water standing in the floor of the bedroom. The lighting in the bathroom above the kitchen was the equivalent of having 2 night order to apply makeup after sunset, I had to move the lamp into the bathroom.
The bar...we were sent info stating that there would be alcohol, and there was beer in the fridge, but the bar didn't have alcohol, just a bunch of empty bottles!!
Light switches that didn't work lights or fans, Lights that didn't have switches to turn on, Microwave wouldn't heat up a cup of coffee even after nuking it for 2.5 minutes, towels were only in the master suite, not the others, hot water for showering was sparse in one of the suites, no wash cloths, dishwasher was broken.
Bedrooms below patio had water standing and smelled so strongly of mold that we referred to it as the "dungeon"! It most definately would be a health hazard to stay in it.

Great views, but not worth what we paid. Stay again? No, I'll pay more to stay somewhere else. The Gucci heirs would be mortified to see what has happened.

Helpful votes: 7 / 9

Guest Comment entered by owner

Review submitted: May 1, 2010   Date of arrival: December 5, 2009

John & Susan,

just a quick note thanking you for the usage of your beautiful St. Maarten home. We had a great trip and a large group of family members.

Being right on the beach was spectacular.

Our best family vacation ever.

Sincerely, Bob

Helpful votes: 0 / 1

Guest Comment entered by owner

Review submitted: April 30, 2010   Date of arrival: January 10, 2010

John, We just returned from La perla so we wanted to send you a note thanking you for a great vacation.

You could not get any closer to the ocean of course so we often went in 3 or 4 times per day with trips to the swimming pool in between.

sorry about all the sand we carried into the pool. We left an extra $ 50 for the cleaners

We'll be back again, maybe a fall vacation next time.

best regards, Susan and Tom

Helpful votes: 0 / 1

Guest Comment entered by owner

Review submitted: April 30, 2010   Date of arrival: September 19, 2009

We go every September when the rates are the lowest.

We know a bargain so why not. Yes it's a little hot and sticky but it's the slow travel season and airfare is cheap also.

5 years in a row now at Mr. Gallagher's house. It's a great place to relax, read and have a few drinks on the deck.

Walk to Ms. Busby's beach bar for the daily happy hour. 75 cent beers and some interesting characters hanging out at the bar. Nice lobsters at night also when they go formal for dining.

Helpful votes: 1 / 2

Guest Comment entered by owner

Review submitted: April 30, 2010   Date of arrival: March 6, 2010

What can you say about this location.

Right on the beach.

Big pool, big patio and views everywhere. Just a fantastic house and location.

We loved our vacation.

regards, Mary

Helpful votes: 0 / 1

Guest Comment entered by owner

Getting married on St. Maarten and a wonderful vacation to boot !

Review submitted: February 12, 2010   Date of arrival: September 7, 2009

Brad and I were happily married on the deck at La perla last September. Our family came and we all had a wonderful time.

My brother says it's the best vacation he's ever had. We had it catered by Fabulous Feasts and the cuisine was superb!

we are now getting excited about our trip this year to your new St. John house. Can hardly wait. Cheers from Canada.

Helpful votes: 5 / 7

Guest Comment entered by owner

St. Maarten vacation was wonderful

Review submitted: February 12, 2010   Date of arrival: February 8, 2010

We just returned from a week at La Perla and had a wonderful time. Thank you!

Helpful votes: 2 / 4

Guest Comment entered by owner

We loved La perla and St. Martin

Review submitted: February 12, 2010   Date of arrival: May 17, 2009

John - Thank you so much for allowing us to stay at La Perla! It was a WONDERFUL stay (May 10-17). The house is AWESOME! I will be telling MANY people about this house and the wonderful area of St. Maarten it is in! We will be coming back soon!

Helpful votes: 2 / 4

Guest Comment entered by owner

from dick and sharon Comstock, Massachusetts

Review submitted: February 11, 2010   Date of arrival: February 2, 2010

What an awesome house and location ! Just an incredible week's vacation. walking a few steps to the beach is heavenly at La Perla.

superb house, very clean and your caretaker was very helpful and acommodating.

Nothing like watching sunsets and having cocktails on that patio overlooking the palm trees and ocean. thanks again, Sharon.

Helpful votes: 2 / 4

Guest Comment entered by owner

We'll return to La perla same week next year

Review submitted: February 11, 2010   Date of arrival: January 10, 2009

We're back from our visit to St. Maarten and our stay at La perla. We really loved it! We are interested in renting the same early January week next year.

We did have a problem with the kitchen oven but Lennox came over and worked on it while we used the outside grille.

best regards, Anita.

Helpful votes: 1 / 2

Guest Comment entered by owner

Our group loved our stay at La perla

Review submitted: February 11, 2010   Date of arrival: January 28, 2010

John, La Perla was absolutely the most wonderful house to vacation at. It was by far the most extraordinarily relaxing vacation I have ever experienced…the beautiful outside living on the patios with the breathtaking views, the adjacent pool, the beautiful beach and excellent restaurants within walking distance down the beach…from breakfast to cocktails to delicious nighttime dining and entertainment…I found “heaven on earth” at La Perla and highly recommend La Perla...we wanted for absolutely nothing. Fabulous! Thank you.

Helpful votes: 1 / 2

Guest Comment entered by owner

Our best vacation ever

Review submitted: February 11, 2010   Date of arrival: January 16, 2010

John, What an incredible spot you have there.

We've stayed at oceanfront resorts but we felt like celebrities staying at La perla.

Love that huge pool.

Walking a few steps down to Dawns beach was pure heaven and we enjoyed the meals at Ms. Busby's by walking down the beach.

The accomodations were incredible and we spent 10 hours per night in those comfy beds.

We'll be talking to you soon about re-booking for next winter.

thanks again, Louise and Rojer

Helpful votes: 2 / 3

Guest Comment entered by owner

We want to return to St. Maarten next year

Review submitted: February 11, 2010   Date of arrival: November 19, 2009

John, I just wanted to drop you a note to say what a great vacation we had last week at La perla on St. Maarten.

We hope to rent one of your other houses in the future.

Best regards, Theresa.

Helpful votes: 2 / 3

Guest Comment entered by owner

Loved the patio and pool at La perla

Review submitted: February 11, 2010   Date of arrival: October 20, 2009

we had a wonderful time in la Perla.Our cable tv didn't work but a new box was arriving the week after; but the view is more beautiful than any TV program.We hope to get back any time soon

Helpful votes: 2 / 3

Guest Comment entered by owner

Great vacation on St. Maarten at La Perla

Review submitted: February 11, 2010   Date of arrival: October 15, 2009

We had a wonderful vacation at La Perla. We spent so much time on the beautiful outside deck.... never even turned the TV on all week! The beach and pool were just fabulous. We'll be coming back again to this wonderful home.

Helpful votes: 1 / 1



Review submitted: April 9, 2009   Date of arrival: April 3, 2009

As soon as we arrived at La Perla we were in awe of the property and location. Just steps down to Dawns beach where it was great for swimming and snorkeling. Busby's bar/restaurant served great food/drinks and so convenient! The Westin is right next door - beautiful hotel - great for drinks and casino if interested. The beds at La Perla were so comfortable and big. Rooms were nicely decorated. We had a great barbeque one night on the large patio overlooking the ocean - what a night! Night life is awesome! And we felt safe with the easy to use alarm system and the gated entrance. We would definitely return to this location - I can honestly say it was the best vacation of our lives! We also stayed at the owner's ski house in Sunday River and that house was just as beautiful..can't wait to go back!

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 2 / 2


Unforgettable Vacation!!

Review submitted: April 9, 2009   Date of arrival: March 22, 2008

This home is absulutley stunning. And the views from this home are amazing. We went with a group of 12 people, and we all had the time of our lives. The home is set up nicely to accommodate lots of privacy to every master suite . The home is right on the beach so all you have to do is wake up and walk right down to the beautiful beach below. The area has many good restaurants, and is very close to the French side of the island. We felt very safe and secure during our stay, and all the locals were very friendly. All in all this was one of the best vacations I've had and can't wait to go back. A big thank you to the owners.

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, people with disabilities, families with teenagers, girls getaway, pet-friendly, sight seeing, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 3 / 4


Vacation of a Lifetime !!!

Review submitted: April 8, 2009   Date of arrival: March 22, 2008

This place is amazing and one of the biggest properties on that side of the island. Every morning we would walk down the walkway to the private beach area and down to the many restaurants and bars only steps away! The property itself offers amazing views and unbelievable privacy. The layout and design of La Perla accommodates everybody and anybody since its design is modern and unique. I would recommend this to anybody and everybody in a heart beat I've never seen a more beautiful place that is designed for the sole purpose of vacation enjoyment. Between the private beach frontage, the fully stocked bar, the amazing infinite pool, the massage patio, the sprawling deck, the amazing views, the …… well you get the picture this place is amazing and I could go on and on about all it has to offer but a written review will never be able to explain the full beauty and enjoyment this place has to offer. This is a must see and experience for yourself. I fell in love with the property the first day we arrived and still wish I was there rather then back in reality up north in New England.

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Owners response: This is a repeat guest and we get a lot of the same people each year though since we own 11 houses, they sometimes try a different house each year. But in the case of La perla and its oceanfront location, there's nothing comparable !

Helpful votes: 2 / 2


Can't wait to go again!!!

Review submitted: April 4, 2009   Date of arrival: December 6, 2008

My husband and I and 2 other couples spent a week there recently and I have to say....It was the best vacation we've had in a long time. There is plenty of space and the layout is such that everyone has so much privacy. We enjoyed the palatial decks and swimming pool which both had amazing ocean views and palm trees affording the most awsome breezes.. and then only a flight of stairs away was the silky sand beach with bath water like temperatures. The property was very secure with both locks on the gate to the beach and the security system for the big rod iron villa gate..We found the owners' tips well worth while and took advantage of having a lobster dinner with ribs, chicken and an array of salads delivered right to the door and set up by the caretakers... There were also 4 excellent restaurants just walking distance on the sandy beach. The villa had all the amenities that anyone could possibly imagine having on a vacation..we all can't wait to book again next year... P.S. Did you know Mariah Carey just had a custom villa built only a stone's throw from La Perla???
Best regards, and we are looking foward to staying at some of your other properties in ski country Stowe, Vt.
Sharon and Dick MA

Recommended for: age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, pet-friendly, sight seeing, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 2 / 2


Most relaxing vacation yet!

Review submitted: April 2, 2009   Date of arrival: December 6, 2008

I stayed at the Villa on Dawns Beach the week of Dec 06 thru the 12th it was by far the most relaxing vacation ever. I was with my husband and 2 other couples we spent the days by the pool after a morning walk on the beach. The description of the Villa was accurate but we all agreed the views off the patio were more breath taking than John described.The staff that maintains the house met us at the door and gave us the tour and answered all of our questions . The house was very clean and even stocked with everything we needed for our morning meal . We enjoyed the privacey that we had we stayed in different sections of the house( yes it is that big ! ) The restaurants that were recommended were nothing less than fabulous. The security was never an issue we set the alarm on and off as we were instructed to do by the security staff who also told us to keep the front gate locked which we did. The house was air conditioned which we really did not use we spent our days and nights on the patio enjoying the ocean breeze and view . I would recommend this to a friend for sure and I also plan on returning this December with the same group we all agreed it is a great way to get ready for the holidays

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 3 / 3


what a location !

Review submitted: March 28, 2009   Date of arrival: February 9, 2009

We have stayed 3 years in a row now at this super luxury house (owned by the same family who rents us their Bretton Woods NH ski house which is also a regular stop for us each December).

We're more warm weather people and love St. Maarten and this house has it all.

It's right on Dawns beach so you can walk down a few steps and go swimming or snorkelling.

We noticed a new security system and neighborhood patrol on our last visit so that makes you feel more comfortable on a Caribbean island.

We had 14 guests and everyone was very comfortable as the bedrooms are air conditioned, though the kitchen and family room are not. We didn't find that a problem though as we just opened the sliders and got a decent breeze.

Recommended for: families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, romantic getaway

Owners response: Owner: we cater to larger numbers of people up to 17 guests though we charge by the actual number.

The house was recently bank appraised at over $ 4 million so we the location is about as good as it gets.

Helpful votes: 2 / 2


Family Vacation turned Tragic

Review submitted: February 17, 2009   Date of arrival: February 7, 2009

My family rented this villa in Feb 2009 for a week. The home had no drapes on the windows, the security system was not hooked up, no lock for the front gate, some of the locks on the doors were not working, the management company (also the SECURITY company) were uncooperative, NO PHONE in the main house, the computer phone did not work for 3-4 days and to top things off, we were robbed WHILE IN THE HOUSE on the last night. Passports, ID's, cameras, money, cell phones and all sense of security. Before renting this home, make sure you know if the security has been fixed and all amenities AS STATED on the contract are there.

The property is GORGEOUS and the area is beautiful....but NOT SAFE.

Take Caution.

Owners response: Our property mgr. said this guest was complaining about everything the moment they arrived so they seemed to be not interested in learning how to turn on and off the alarm system.

Gates were also allowed to remain unlocked which we don't recommend since this is an oceanfront house valued at $ 5 million.

Of course there are no drapes on the living room sliders. Why would anyone want to block spectacular ocean views. all bedrooms have drapes for privacy and air conditioning.

The alarm system is quite simple with just a few buttons and there are 3 cellphones in the house, one in each master suite. since this guest left, the alarm system has been reduced to one simple button.

We also have neighborhood security 24/7 for the 60 houses in our neighborhood. owner comments.

Helpful votes: 3 / 9


great place

Review submitted: December 7, 2008   Date of arrival: November 2, 2008

My wife and I spent two weeks at this fabulous waterfront home and could not be happier with our experience. Fantastic snorkeling right out from the villa on the beautiful beach and the spectacular pool were entertainment enough, but our nites in town at all the great restaurants were terrific, drinking French wines for half what we'd spend at home on the same bottle.
We never encountered any type of problems with the very friendly islanders, and the 24 hour security provided by the homeowners association made us feel very safe and secure.
All in all, this is a tremendous villa on a gorgeous island that truly makes you feel like like you are in paradise.

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, people with disabilities, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 10 / 12


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