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The St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, Puerto Rico [Master Thread]

The St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, Puerto Rico [Master Thread]

Old Oct 18, 14, 7:58 pm
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Raleigh, NC
Programs: SPG Platinum, United Platinum
Posts: 5
Originally Posted by slariz View Post
As a platinum during a trip earlier this year, I had applied SNA's to a point stay and they actually upgraded us to a St Regis Suite without taking them about a week before we got there. So you never know.
What did you take as your platinum amenity? I'm curious to see if they're adjusted the breakfast offering there.

I'll be heading there in a few weeks.
smmx is offline  
Old Oct 19, 14, 8:53 am
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 632
Originally Posted by smmx View Post
What did you take as your platinum amenity? I'm curious to see if they're adjusted the breakfast offering there.

I'll be heading there in a few weeks.
We did breakfast, which I seem to recall covered everything on the menu at Fern except maybe coffee? To be honest I don't remember exactly, but we definitely took the breakfast option and if it didn't cover everything, it covered almost everything.
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Old Oct 19, 14, 10:59 am
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: YVR
Programs: AC Super Elite, Bonvoy Titanium
Posts: 4,499
Originally Posted by smmx View Post
What did you take as your platinum amenity? I'm curious to see if they're adjusted the breakfast offering there.

I'll be heading there in a few weeks.
Amenity covers continental breakfast for 2 at Fern ($16 each). You're free to use it as a credit for anything else on the menu.

There is also a second amenity to make up for Internet being included in the resort fee, which you can select a $10 f&b credit.

Doesn't make much sense to choose points as either amenity, even if you're there for 1 night.

Last edited by yvr76; Apr 3, 15 at 11:20 am
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Old Oct 21, 14, 10:47 pm
Company Representative - Starwood
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Guangzhou
Programs: SPG
Posts: 1,021
Originally Posted by yvr76 View Post
Yes, I was able to request SNAs for our trip earlier this year as well. This looks like a more recent change at this property. Maybe the Lurkers can chime in.
Hi yvr76,

Thank you for your patience.

You should be able to apply Suite Night Awards for your reservation at this hotel now.

Please let me know if you need any further assistance.

Best Regards,

Christina Zhou
Social Media Specialist
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide

[email protected]
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Old Oct 22, 14, 1:25 pm
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: YVR
Programs: AC Super Elite, Bonvoy Titanium
Posts: 4,499
Originally Posted by Starwood Lurker III View Post
You should be able to apply Suite Night Awards for your reservation at this hotel now.
Thank you! I won't ask what the issue was, because I'm assuming you won't be able to share
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Old Dec 1, 14, 11:09 am
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Summit County, CO.
Programs: UA 1K, Marriott Ambassador, Hyatt Diamond, American Platinum
Posts: 381
Just finished a 5 night stay at this property using SPG points. As a Platinum member, I was upgraded prior to arrival to an ocean front room on the first floor. SNA wasn't available - which I suppose is no surprise given that this stay was over Thanksgiving week.

The physical property is quite beautiful and is a jungle meets beach feeling. The rooms are in individual smaller buildings. It reminds me a bit of the Nam Hai in terms of the beach and landscaping. I was in building 12, which is farthest from the Plantation house with the bar, Fern, check in desk, and concierge. The landscaping was quite nice and seemed to be very thoughtfully designed, giving us a view of the beach and ocean from our first floor room while still providing privacy. If I return here, I will request a room on the second floor for improved beach view.

The room is nice, with a huge bathroom. I honestly thought the enormous shower/bath area was a lot of wasted space and needed more jets/shower heads to deserve such a large space. I also would have liked to have an outdoor shower. This property just seems to cry out for outdoor shower and I wonder why the architects selected a larger indoor space instead.

Fern definitely has a great selection of breakfast items and we appreciated the Platinum credit. The credit allows for the continental breakfast (pastry, coffee, juice, and fresh fruit) or for an $18 credit. We used the $18 credit and still ended up spending about $40+ for breakfast out of pocket as the french toast and egg dishes were just too tempting. The patio outside has a nice view of the beach. Though beware of the birds that love breakfast as much as we do!

The pool area is also nice, set along a series of pools at different levels. There always seemed to be plenty of chairs. While a cabana might be nice, they do not really have beach views. We didn't think one would be good value. The hot tub is spacious and kind of hidden in some landscaping between the pool and the beach. The beach is nice and I enjoyed swimming. The waves were fairly large and the water was rough. I did not experience any rip currents. It's definitely more for confident swimmers. Beach service for chairs, towels, and f&b was quite good and attentive.

Really the only draw back of this property is the service (except for beach service). For the quality of the property and prices charged, the service really lacks. While I could go on and on, I'll just mention a few examples. Requested ice and bath amenities and they were never delivered. Made dinner reservations and turn down service would always show up while we were getting ready - this is just a lack of good management, training, and communications between departments. Asked for a sharp knife. Got a butter knife. Requested a package be delivered to the room as soon as it arrived (requested this at check in). Had to call MULTIPLE times to get it delivered to the room on the day DHL dropped it at the hotel. All of these, while minor, add up to an experience much less than what I would have expected at a St Regis.

The worst was probably the concierge/tour desk. First, the concierge cannot book tours like the bio bay or rain forest tour. You must go through the tour company located at a desk right next to the concierge. The tour desk has more limited hours. Why have a concierge that cannot book these trips?

So when we did finally meet with the tour person to book the bio bay tour before breakfast, she told us that "she was very busy today" and seemed annoyed that we were bothering her. She said she wasn't sure if they had availability but would check. I thought she would have checked and come up to tell us what she was able to find while we were eating. Nope. We went back downstairs, she said she did have a trip and was ready to charge us $95. I said we were going to drive ourselves (which she had forgotten) and the price should be lower. In fact, it was only $65.

I recommend booking your tours on the many tour companies available on the web as they are all about the same and the prices are lower if you book directly (for example, bio bay tours can be had for about $40-$45).

The bio bay tour is awesome, unique and I highly recommend it!

While we enjoyed this trip to PR, I would probably not return from Denver given the lack of non stop flights and distance. From the East Coast and Midwest this is a good choice. It could be a great choice if they really improve their service.
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Old Feb 4, 15, 3:23 pm
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 109
I am here now for 5 days and my opinion is St Regis Bahia Beach is fantastic and compares favorably to St Regis Punta Mita which previously I had felt stood atop all by itself.
We were fortunate to receive booked with points standard deluxe room to platinum upgrade one-bedroom suite ocean view. Service has been fantastic. Employees are friendly, helpful, and prompt. The grounds are gorgeous and have the rainforest feel of Westin Kaanapali or Westin Playa Conchal. Internet is fast. Platinum amenity is delicious continental breakfast and value credits to upgrade. Yes, the resort fee plus daily parking charge is ridiculous but we've chosen to soften that with adult beverages and snacks bought from Ralph's rather than buying drinks at the resort. Our 5-day stay here will be over too fast.
arkyrab is offline  
Old Feb 18, 15, 11:47 am
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Northwest NJ
Programs: Starwood Platinum,Marriott Platinum, United Silver
Posts: 2,305
Wow - again!

This was our second trip. My daughter and son-in-law went two years ago (just the two of them) and came home telling us that they were returning the next year (last year), bringing their then 6 year old twins and wanted my wife and I, along with his parents, to join them. We did and had an incredible time. Wrote a glowing review on Tripadvisor.

Returned this year with my daughter and her family and my youngest son with his wife and son (age 2). Once again - Wow.

As I wrote on Tripadvisor, I usually feel the need to be a thorough reviewer but here, I am overwhelmed by the sense of wellness and happiness and I was around the resort. The grounds are magnificent. The staff is warm, friendly and happy. They make it clear they are committed to your happiness.

Then there is the Head Concierge, Jossell, who has in two years become a dear friend. My wife had a slight health problem and his concern was incredible and touching. Arranged for a massage and then contacted us at dinner to see if she was feeling any better. Really?!

As a Platinum, while last year we only got a regular room upgrade, this year we got a magnificent suite facing our over the [Mediterranean - edited] Carribean. A bottle of wine the second night with a beautiful plate of fruit and cheese. That same second day was my birthday and I cannot count the number of people at the Plantation House who wished me a happy birthday. Again - really?!

My wife and I decided to be really generous so we picked up every bill - including golf. Left with a hefty bill but oh - what an incredible 5 days. I guess the awful weather up in the Northeast made it even sweeter but we look forward to returning often. We truly feel we have friends there and even writing this review, I can't get the smile off my face.

OK - reviewer hat. The service at Molasses was as the name indicates - slow as Molasses. Yes, it is an issue that there are only two restaurants and that traveling "off-campus" requires an expensive taxi. But in the end - why nitpick? Would not want to spend more than 5 nights here but 5 nights was perfect for us. Enough even for us to eat (no meat and no shellfish - modified Kosher) but again - the place just makes me feel so darn happy!

Last edited by stevens397; Feb 18, 15 at 3:27 pm
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Old Feb 18, 15, 1:53 pm
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: ECP
Programs: DL Diamond
Posts: 1,653
Originally Posted by stevens397 View Post
this year we got a magnificent suite facing our over the Meditteranean.
That must be a very high floor!
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Old Feb 18, 15, 3:27 pm
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Northwest NJ
Programs: Starwood Platinum,Marriott Platinum, United Silver
Posts: 2,305
Originally Posted by DC777Fan View Post
That must be a very high floor!
Well I AM a Platinum! Oops. Corrected
stevens397 is offline  
Old Apr 3, 15, 11:27 am
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: YVR
Programs: AC Super Elite, Bonvoy Titanium
Posts: 4,499
Here again for our 4th time. Got an upgrade to a 1 bedroom suite facing the ocean! Few changes of note:

- they finally put some netting around the deck at Fern to prevent birds from flying in. Doesn't obstruct the view but makes a huge difference for breakfast which was riddled with crows before.

- Molasses has been revamped a bit. Went there once for dinner, has a more casual look and feel. Food was good, service wasn't that great.

- complimentary butler beverage service is a bit more limited. Used to be unlimited, last year it was french press up to twice a day. Now I believe it's once a day before noon.

- in addition to Seagrapes being open for dinner (during busy season), there is now a food truck on the Plantation House lawn after 6pm serving appetizers.

- seem to be more scheduled activities for both adults and children

Lots more construction for the St. Regis Residences. Apparently they're selling quite well.

Last edited by yvr76; Apr 4, 15 at 3:04 pm
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Old Sep 4, 15, 9:45 am
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: UK/ORD
Programs: FB Plat Lifetime - BA GGL - VS Gold - EK Gold - HH Diamond - SPG Gold - Club Carlson Gold
Posts: 905
I'm currently staying at this hotel with my wife over Labour Day weekend. We stayed at the property on the same weekend last year and had a wonderful stay. Previously we were upgraded to a Luxury Suite which was much appreciated. As upgrades are a matter of chance, we wanted to ensure our experience matched last year so my wife (SPG Platinum - I'm just Gold) used her SNA. Our suite was confirmed earlier this week. Having enjoyed ourselves so much last year we convinced friends to join us to stay at the hotel as well so having a suite was not essential but helpful.

My comments are made with consideration to my own experience at this hotel but also SPG, Four Seasons and other hotels of a similar standard.

The staff are welcoming and very friendly however our experience falls woefully short of the standard this hotel set last year.

We were allocated a suite far enough away to justify a buggy journey with luggage after making a long journey to Puerto Rico. However, imagine our surprise our friends were whisked away on a golf buggy to the same building but we were made to walk. I'm not sure what happened here but this really should have been a buggy journey.

To our surprise and disappointment was that the suite is on the ground floor. The staff were proud of the changes that have been made to the property since we last stayed and justifiably so but we now have no privacy due to a path having been built 30-40 feet outside our window and at the same level. So, basically, for us to enjoy the 'view', we must also allow others to enjoy a view of us. If we close the sheer, people can't see in but we can't see out either. However, at dusk, if we switch the lights on, we're once again in full view unless we close the curtains.

I spoke with the manager and expressed that our preference was to not have a suite on the ground floor however he said that no other rooms were available but he could put us in a regular room and cancel our SNAs. That isn't an option for us. He informed me that if there were any cancellations he let me know. I thanked him and we went for dinner at Molasses.

We returned to the suite later yesterday evening and hung out with our friends before turning in for the night. Unfortunately I hardly slept because a mechanical noise would sound every few minutes in the room. I switched the air conditioning off hoping that would help but it did not. Weariness took over and I did fall asleep but woke several times till I gave up trying to sleep.

I got out of bed at 6am and spoke with the duty manager at 6.30am. I ciomplained about the noise and he said he would speak to the engineer. Whilst on the phone to him, the cordless phone in the room died. He called back so I grabbed another phone. I managed to complete the conversation this time before this handset froze out. He informed me that the engineer knew the cause and that the noise was being caused by the fan in the bathroom and that it required adjustment. However, although the engineer was on the premises, it was 6.45am and he finished his shift at 7am when another engineer would come on shift. I was advised that I should expect the engineer circa 7.20 to 7.25am. I thanked him, put the phone down and waited.

The engineer didn't arrive so I called to speak to the duty manager again at 7.50am. I was advised that manager had now gone home but I would be transferred to someone else. After a long hold I explained the situation. This person told me that he would speak to the engineer and call me back in 5 minutes - that was at 8am. I waited for the call but it never came. I called back at 8.35am asking where the engineer was and complained that he was supposed to call me back after 5 minutes. At first he protested that he'd only spoken to me a 15 minutes prior but then checked the log and apologised as we'd spoken at 7.58am which was now 45 minutes prior.

This time two engineers were promptly sent to the room and identified the noise as the compressor for the air conditioning. I told them that I'd suspected it might have been related to the air conditioning so we'd had to switch it off but the noise had persisted. The engineer said that wouldn't make a difference because the compressor would also activate to control humidity in the room. He went away to consult with someone and then came back to say that we could mitigate the issue by keeping the air conditioning on and lowering the temperature of the room. We find 68F to be a comfortable temperature; he suggested 60F but that would be way too cold. We agreed 67F but it was in fact set to 64F. The engineers were very friendly and one gave me his personal cell number in case I needed any further help. He also replaced the batteries in 2 of the 3 phones in the room because they had frozen or died altogether.

My wife and everyone else went to the gym and are currently having breakfast. I was just too tired to join them so I stayed back in the room to try to catch up on some lost sleep. However, the room is freezing and the compressor keeps going off every few minutes making a loud mechanical noise. The difference now is that I can't even sleep because the room is so cold - I've given up.

Since three different managers have told me there are no other suites available, (although I've since learnt that although all the suites may have been allocated, others were check in long after us so our preference could have been accommodated) our choices are simple:

1. Set the room to 60F and freeze
2. Set the room to a comfortable 68F and use ear plugs
3. Move to a standard room.

Frankly, none of those options appeal. I'm hugely disappointed that a much needed rest in a great resort has started off so badly. I've lost a night's sleep and wasted all of this morning trying to resolve what is a basic requirement of a hotel room which is some peace in which to sleep. The staff are friendly but this is simply not good enough not just as a St Regis but any hotel however basic.

I normally check and double check my posts but frankly, right now, I'm too damn tired - apologies.
Moriarty is offline  
Old Sep 4, 15, 12:21 pm
Join Date: Nov 2008
Programs: SPG-Plat, Hilton-Diamond, Club Carlson-Silver, Cathay-Diamond, Virgin-Gold
Posts: 2,139
Originally Posted by Moriarty View Post

I normally check and double check my posts but frankly, right now, I'm too damn tired - apologies.
It doesn't sound ideal I have to say, it can be very frustrating going back to a property you have really enjoyed and it doesn't live up to the memory you have.

In regards the room and the location while it sounds like a poor idea by the resort the fact is you have got a suite that is as you reserved with you SNA's, as with most hotels not all rooms are equal even in same category. I don't think you have any real reason to complain, you have asked to move, they are busy and someone has to have that suite.

I regards the noise however I do think it fully unacceptable that the suggestion is you turn the temp down. This is an admission that there is a fault with the aircon they are unable or unwilling to fix. As such you should be reaccomodated. The fact you used SNA's helps to a degree as if you ahd just had a Plat upgrade on checkin then they could offer you the original room type booked and you could have little to complain about, it would still be fair. However as you had your suite 'guaranteed' by the SNA's 5 days out I think you should get some compensation of points.

If the noise / temp is that unbearable then I can only assume you will choose to downgrade and you should get your SNA's back and something to apologise for the issues caused, especially as a returning guest. Remember however that if the SNA's hadn't cleared you would be in a room they are now offering you so the level of compensation offered is likely to be lower than if you had booked the suite originally.

You do have my sympathies as noisy aircon is one of the things that really annoys me, but don't let it ruin your holiday, speak to the GM if he is on property or failing that whoever is acting as resort manager. Don't go over the top and let your frustration get the better of you just explain calmly your frustrations and disappointment as a returning guest but I would keep away from the room location issue as it makes it sound more like you are over playing the aircon just to get a different suite!

Best of luck, let us know how you get on!
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Old Sep 6, 15, 3:52 pm
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: UK/ORD
Programs: FB Plat Lifetime - BA GGL - VS Gold - EK Gold - HH Diamond - SPG Gold - Club Carlson Gold
Posts: 905
Originally Posted by toddml View Post
Best of luck, let us know how you get on!
After writing my post I spoke with SPG who contacted the hotel. My request was for them to simply fix the problem. After the call, I left for the beach and returned to the room a few hours later. The problem with the compressor remained. My wife called SPG to open a case file and shortly afterwards she called the front desk to make an appointment with the GM for me for the day of our departure. When asked the reason for the meeting my wife explained that it was to discuss some issues with our stay before we checked out. The reason was to discuss the issues but ultimately for us to make the personal decision whether we ever return to the property or not.

It would appear that formalising the matter with SPG may have nudged the 4th manager we had now spoken to into action. She advised they could offer us another suite where they had tested the air conditioning. They had looked at the air conditioning in our room but could no improve the situation. Now that we've vacated the room, I'm happy to disclose it was room 913. The sound was of the compressor starting up every few minutes with a loud thump. The room we have moved to has some background noise (which is to be expected) but it's relatively non-intrusive.

We moved into the new room late on Friday night at which time I also succumbed to suspected food poisoning. I slept all day in the new room yesterday (at last!) and on the road to recovery now. I spent a wonderful day at the beach but it feels like today was the first day of this short vacation and we're leaving tomorrow.

As I've stated, the staff are very friendly and welcoming. They've made a real effort to look after us and especially so recognising that I've been unwell; it's very much appreciated I do however wish they'd acted proactively in the first place and I hadn't had to 'work' so hard for them to do what they should have done from the outset and that was either fix the problem or change the room.

They've also compensated us with a food and bev credit which is a nice gesture but it's only a gesture as lost time cannot be monetised. I'd really like to return but only if I have confidence that my time won't be better spent elsewhere. Therefore, I'll have a conversation when we check out to get a fuller understanding of what went wrong here.
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Old Sep 8, 15, 12:47 pm
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: ATL
Programs: SPG, DL
Posts: 307
I too stayed at this property over labor day this past weekend, and our experience was less than exceptional. Bottom line, the hard product is absolutely top notch, the service leaves a LOT to be desired.

We arrived in San Juan late Thursday and stayed at the Sheraton in town where we received a wonderful suite upgrade (I made plat for this year in early August). Got to the St. Regis the next day, and they thanked me for my SPG Gold membership. This was a bit surprising, as I had SPG edit some of the reservation details (minor, number of ppl in room, etc) just a week prior which resulted in a re-booking at RACK rate. The Plat line agent had to call the property and manually get my original rate back. So how they didn't have me as a Plat is beyond me.

Predictably, no suite upgrade, in fact, no room upgrade available at all. Not the end of the world, as the bottom level room is perfectly fine (if not on the first floor). But still annoying.

First issue came Friday evening as turndown service showed to the room at 5pm. A bit early imo, and we asked them to come back later, during our reservation for dinner. Queue complaint 1--how is it that turndown isn't timed to when you have a dinner reservation ON PROPERTY. This should absolutely be standard, and is my experience at other St. Regis (e.g. in NYC 2 weeks ago when I was asked at check in when my dinner res. was and would I prefer trundown at that time).

No matter, we called the butler and requested turndown while we were at dinner, which was graciously accepted by the butler. Except, when we returned to the room at 11pm, nothing had been touched. Disgraceful--if you say you're going to do something, do it. If 8pm was too late to do turndown, tell me, don't promise and then fail to deliver.

Day 2 we made the mistake of trying to go to the pool, which was filled with 2-8 year old children running around and adults yelling, yes YELLING, across the pool at them. Not a property problem, but annoying nonetheless. So we went to the beach, which was excellent, except there is only 1 server for all umbrellas set up. On Saturday of Labor Day, there are predictably over 25 different groups on the beach. With 1 server. She was wonderful and polite and paid us as much attention as possible, but still could only bring drinks once an hour at best. We took to ordering our next drink when our previous drink was brought, and still had to wait a good 30 minutes without a drink each time.

Actually received turndown on night 2. Only because we were 20 minutes away from leaving the room for drinks/dinner at 6pm when the turndown crew showed up and we asked them face-to-face to return 15 minutes later.

Day 3 the beach situation was even worse, over 30 groups on the beach, still only 1 server. Same lady who was again nothing but polite, but again took FOREVER to get anything. For example, we got to the beach around 11 and decided to order food around noon. Asked for a menu, which we received around 12:30. Ordered within 5 minutes, and received our food at 2:15.

When we returned to the room, our toiletries had still not been replaced (since the bottles we were using on day 1) despite the room being cleaned twice and turned down once. So we requested more since our shampoo and conditioner were out. At which point we noticed no washcloths in the room, and asked those be delivered as well. 15 minutes later an attendant showed up with bath products and 3 large towels. No washcloths. I asked for washcloths and he said there were none on property--they ran out and had to wait for the next laundry truck to come in.

Night 3 we went into San Juan for dinner, and returned to... no turndown. Again. despite being gone from 5-11pm.

Overall, the property simply isn't worth the 1000 per night you end up spending, and I was on an excellent rate (just over 500/night). The location and physical beauty are unmatched, but the experience leaves a lot to be desired. The food is expensive, but not any more than any other nice restaurant (although the quality is a bit below a comparable restaurant in town). This drinks, at $16 a pop, and a bit over the top pricey, but again only $3-4 more than comparable beachfront restaurants in San Juan.

I would love to return, but am reluctant to spend so much and receive so little. Hands down the worst St. Regis I've stayed at in terms of service. It feels more like a Westin resort, where such inconveniences would be overlooked (at least by me). It's just not what you expect from the St. Regis brand.

Last edited by ATLawyer; Sep 8, 15 at 12:54 pm
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