Tag: Starwood

Review: St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, Puerto Rico

This property lives up to the expectation of the many wonderful online reviews we read before we booked our trip. In short, the service was impeccable, the resort well-managed, and the property as luxurious as it can get on an island paradise. We simply cannot wait to come back for our next tropical vacation.

Pool pic

From the moment our cab drove into the lobby ($68 + tolls & tips), we were warmly greeted by Edwin, the bell captain. Check-in at the counter came along with a rum punch, which was a pleasant surprise for both me and my girlfriend. Although the room was not ready yet, we were told that we’d been upgraded to an oceanfront view room (one of us has SPG platinum status which probably helped), which was right next to the plantation house. We definitely recommend asking for one of the rooms (we were in building 5) near the plantation house, as the entire property is a sprawling 400+ acres and most of the amenities, including the beautiful swimming pool, are around the plantation house.

Lounge pic

The oceanfront room was absolutely gorgeous, and for New Yorkers like us, the bathroom alone was larger than most of the studios we can find in the city. The bathroom came with a luxurious bathtub that fit the two of us, with a separate spacious area that comes equipped with a rainforest shower. The room also came along with a balcony facing the beach along with a very comfortable couch. We thought the additional turndown service at night was an extremely nice touch, especially since we used the room pretty often during the day after our activities on the beach.

room pic

Speaking of activities, the resort has a golf course, tennis courts, a boathouse for water sports, and plenty of other cool features which we did not get to explore. We mostly spent our time at the beach, but the place definitely had plenty to do for hotel guests who are interested in other activities. Furthermore, wifi was available across the entire resort (even on the beach!!), so for those of us who like to snapchat on the beach, fret not, your friends on social media will know of the good time you’re having 😉

beach pic

One of our favorite features was the St. Regis butler service, which we never thought we would utilize but somehow ended up depending on quite a bit. 10 mins after we checked-in, Gabriel the friendly butler greeted us at the door, and kindly told us about the butler services, including that they could iron two pieces of clothing for free. More importantly, he also gave us a phone number for the service that we could text for requests. I think one of the biggest impediments to hotel service is that you have to usually be in your room to call the front desk, but with the additional texting feature, service is truly accessible anywhere on the property – so kudos to hotel management for instituting that. For example, when we were on the beach, we realized that our GoPro had ran out of battery and I did not bring my charger on the trip. We texted the butler service in hopes that they might have a charger, and sure enough Glenda replied and picked up our GoPro and charged our camera for us. Within hours, she brought our GoPro back to the beach and we had an absolutely splendid time recording some of our gymnastic tricks in the waters, which was really cool – so thanks Glenda for the awesome assist!

plantation pic

Food options are pretty limited, as some of the other reviews would attest to, but they’re wonderful nevertheless. Service at the restaurants was as good as it is in other parts of the hotel. Jeff Holthaus, who must be the pool/beach/restaurant manager, was an ever-friendly presence around the area. To be honest I’m not sure what his position is, but he was serving food at the Seagrapes restaurant, then serving drinks on the beach and the pool, and was also at the champagne sabering part of the evening on the front lawn. We’re not sure how he can be at so many place all the time, but every time we passed him by, he was just such a friendly face and greeted us warmly each time, if only to briefly chat with us about our time at the resort. Five star service, five star personalities everywhere at this resort. Truly amazing time.

Additional notes for those who are SPG elite members: we booked this room with SPG points (35,000 points a night) a couple of months ahead of time. As an SPG platinum member, we had 3 amenities to choose from at check in (choose 2 of 3): 1) $32 worth of breakfast at Fern restaurant each morning, 2) $10 credit a night, or 3) 500 SPG points a night. We were also upgraded to an ocean front view room, which was just one level below suites, despite booking with points rather than a paid rate, and this was during a busy 4th of July long holiday weekend. 4pm late checkout was not a feature, as I guess this is technically a resort. All in all, I thought it was decent recognition for SPG members, but even if you weren’t, the service was impeccable. Truly hoping that with the impending Marriott ownership the SPG perks will be kept alive. #StarwoodProud