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Old April 23, 2012, 08:29 PM   #1
krmlaw
 
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Resorts: Sheraton Desert Oasis, Presidental Villas at Plantation Resort
Planning Aruba for October - any and all advice welcomed!

Planning our first Aruba trip.

Need any and all reccs.

Staying at Marriott Surf Club in a 2 bedroom (thanks to a great II trade!)

Its me, DH and Dbaby, 3 years old.

We will probably rent a car, unless I hear otherwise? We usually rent cars on the islands when we travel.
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Old April 24, 2012, 12:57 AM   #2
siesta
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Im here in Aruba now, posting from Ocean Club but have room at SC too. Im not sure what kind of reccs. your looking for, but if you use the search feature you will find alot of good restaraunt reccs.

I dont think you need a car, cabs are not that bad $10-$12 to most restaraunts, as well as many within walking distance (maybe not with a 3 yr old)

The junior will love the beaches on the west end (palm, eagle, manchebo) there is basically no waves and the water is very shallow. The reason there is no waves (really it reminds me of a big lake) is because the wind blows out towards the water as opposed to towards the beach. So if you look at the motion of the water, it is actually going AWAY from you. Very unique in that regard.

Last edited by siesta; April 24, 2012 at 01:12 AM.
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Old April 24, 2012, 07:40 AM   #3
lvhmbh
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Have you gone to www.aruba-bb.com and/or www.aruba.com. I have been going to Aruba for 16 years and always check these bb's ramping up to my trips!
I would rent a car myself as it is much more convenient, JMHO. You will see all kinds of answers to all of your questions on those bb's.
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Old April 24, 2012, 09:09 AM   #4
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thanks ill check them out!
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Old April 24, 2012, 12:04 PM   #5
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I would not rent a car for the entire time you are there, if you rent one for a day to see the island that would be all you would need. Not much to see outside of town and the area in which you are staying in. I always dislike renting a car because you than don't have to worry about having a little to much to drink and than driving...cabs are not very expensive. The Hyatt has a very nice Sunday brunch that you should try. Lots of places to eat within walking distance from Surf or Ocean Club.
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Old April 24, 2012, 01:09 PM   #6
ilene13
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Resorts: 3 platinum wks Marriott's Aruba Ocean Club 1 platinum wk Marriott's Surfwatch, 2 wks The Royal Sands, 1 wk Royal Hac
We have been going to Aruba for two weeks a year for over 25 years. We do rent a car for the entire time as we like the convenience. The beach and the lazy river are wonderful. Make sure you go to the butterfly zoo and Phillips animal park. Both are perfect for your son. All of the restaurants are child friendly, we took our sons and now our grandson to all of them. Just go to dinner a little earlier. Try Smokey Joe's for casual BBQ, El Gaucho, Madame Janette, Screaming Eagle, Blossoms, chalet Suisse, Carte Blanche (they do not allow children), Yemanja Grill. If you have any specific questions send me a PM.
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Old April 24, 2012, 02:32 PM   #7
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A Toyota Yaris for the week will run about $200. If you price the cab ride to and from the airport and a few trips around the island(especially if you go to Flying Fishbone or Old Man and the Sea to eat on the beach with your feet in the water), you will find a car to be more cost effective.
For the 3 year old, I would definitely recommend the Baby Beach. It's about a 40 minute ride from the SC, but a great place for a toddler to swim, look for fish, etc. I also heard last year of a petting zoo that opened near the little church on the northern side of the island which might be a good place to go. That might be the Philips Animal park the previous poster mentioned. The butterfly farm is small, but there are a number of unique butterflies inside the closed area that you can walk among. If you go early in the week, I think you can go back in later in the week as many times as you want without paying another admission.
As for places to eat, check out the Aruba bb for recommendations, as there are many good places to eat. Can't really think of any restaurants good for a child, except maybe the Buccaneer which has giant fish tanks, but so-so food.
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Old April 24, 2012, 04:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pappy Mentos View Post
A Toyota Yaris for the week will run about $200. If you price the cab ride to and from the airport and a few trips around the island(especially if you go to Flying Fishbone or Old Man and the Sea to eat on the beach with your feet in the water), you will find a car to be more cost effective.
For the 3 year old, I would definitely recommend the Baby Beach. It's about a 40 minute ride from the SC, but a great place for a toddler to swim, look for fish, etc. I also heard last year of a petting zoo that opened near the little church on the northern side of the island which might be a good place to go. That might be the Philips Animal park the previous poster mentioned. The butterfly farm is small, but there are a number of unique butterflies inside the closed area that you can walk among. If you go early in the week, I think you can go back in later in the week as many times as you want without paying another admission.
As for places to eat, check out the Aruba bb for recommendations, as there are many good places to eat. Can't really think of any restaurants good for a child, except maybe the Buccaneer which has giant fish tanks, but so-so food.
As I said before all of the restaurants have been wonderful to my grandson--he's 4, last time he was in Aruba he was almost 3. The last time we went to the Buccaneer they had roaches climbing up the wall-don't go!!!!
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Old May 2, 2012, 06:01 PM   #9
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Have a great trip! Don't forget floats for the Lazy River. The SC is ideal with kids. There is even a sandy sitting area poolside so you can have the best of both worlds for little ones, and of course the beach can entertain kids all day.

As for a car- it probably is a wash cabs versus renting; we always rent for convenience. The island is small and easy to get around, and I think it's a lot safer having a car seat for a toddler, so in your case I would definitely recommend renting a car.
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Old May 2, 2012, 06:07 PM   #10
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we will most likely rent, as i wont let DS ride around in a cab without car seat, and thats a pain to drag around.

you guys are so helpful!! thanks so much.
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Old May 2, 2012, 07:44 PM   #11
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Resorts: Marriott Aruba Surf Club, Marriott St Kitt's, Costa Linda Aruba
Don't overpack. My first trips to Aruba, I packed too much. I've since learned that most places are informal enough that I can get by with lots of beach wear and a couple pairs of capris, shorts and T shirts. A sweater for air conditioned restaurants.

One advantage of Surf Club is the washer/dryer in the unit, especially when traveling with youngsters.

Last piece of advice -- plan to have a wonderful time!
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Old May 3, 2012, 05:27 AM   #12
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Don't over pack I always do - have no idea why - I lived at Costa Linda for 7 months and had a whole suitcase of clothes I never wore
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Old May 3, 2012, 12:50 PM   #13
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Does Aruba Ocean Club have any laundry facilities? I would assume so -- are they located on specific floors?

To the OP -- we'll be at Aruba Ocean Club Sept 30 - Oct 6 -- if we overlap, perhaps we can have an island drink together?

What's the speciality drink for Aruba?

All the best,

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Old May 3, 2012, 12:56 PM   #14
siesta
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregT View Post
Does Aruba Ocean Club have any laundry facilities? I would assume so -- are they located on specific floors?

To the OP -- we'll be at Aruba Ocean Club Sept 30 - Oct 6 -- if we overlap, perhaps we can have an island drink together?

What's the speciality drink for Aruba?

All the best,

Greg
Ocean Club does have laundry facilities on floors. For certain I can tell you floor 3 has them, as thats what floor I was on. They are by the elevators. Surf Club has washer and dryer in the villa.

Balashi is Aruba's local beer, brewed on the island. They also came out with Balashi Chill which comes in a clear bottle. However, I strongly suggest you try Amstel Bright. Its a Dutch Caribbean beer, We dont have it stateside, and it is brewed in Curacao, its the best beer in the dutch caribbean IMO.

They also make a mixed drink called Aruba Riba

Last edited by siesta; May 3, 2012 at 12:59 PM.
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Old May 3, 2012, 01:32 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siesta View Post
Ocean Club does have laundry facilities on floors. For certain I can tell you floor 3 has them, as thats what floor I was on. They are by the elevators. Surf Club has washer and dryer in the villa.

Balashi is Aruba's local beer, brewed on the island. They also came out with Balashi Chill which comes in a clear bottle. However, I strongly suggest you try Amstel Bright. Its a Dutch Caribbean beer, We dont have it stateside, and it is brewed in Curacao, its the best beer in the dutch caribbean IMO.

They also make a mixed drink called Aruba Riba
Great suggestions -- thanks very much!
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Old May 3, 2012, 08:42 PM   #16
ilene13
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Resorts: 3 platinum wks Marriott's Aruba Ocean Club 1 platinum wk Marriott's Surfwatch, 2 wks The Royal Sands, 1 wk Royal Hac
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregT View Post
Does Aruba Ocean Club have any laundry facilities? I would assume so -- are they located on specific floors?

To the OP -- we'll be at Aruba Ocean Club Sept 30 - Oct 6 -- if we overlap, perhaps we can have an island drink together?

What's the speciality drink for Aruba?

All the best,

Greg
There are laundry facilities on each floor.
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Old May 5, 2012, 07:35 AM   #17
tirakotchi
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Thumbs up WiFi news!

I found a very affordable way to have WiFi access island wide with a multiple(5) device HotSpot(for phne, laptop etc) from another company not being Setar. This HotSpot works perfectly Island wide. Contact me and I will give you the information on that. Just like Setar they go by the day, partial week, full week or more. Drop me a line and I will reveal the info :-) tirakotchi@hotmail.com
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Old May 9, 2012, 09:48 AM   #18
Anne S
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Definitely rent a car. It is not that expensive (the Toyota Yaris we rented from Budget was less than $200 for the week), and it gives you much more freedom. And with a young child I would think that you would want the convenience of your own wheels, rather than relying on taxis.
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Old May 11, 2012, 02:21 AM   #19
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Trading points

Quote:
Originally Posted by lvhmbh View Post
Have you gone to www.aruba-bb.com and/or www.aruba.com. I have been going to Aruba for 16 years and always check these bb's ramping up to my trips!
I would rent a car myself as it is much more convenient, JMHO. You will see all kinds of answers to all of your questions on those bb's.
We just exchanged points from Paradise Village Resorts for La Cabana in Aruba
and were informed that it would be an efficiency room. What can be done about this. We have asked them for a different room but have not heard back.
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Old May 11, 2012, 05:21 AM   #20
lvhmbh
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I have no idea re points, etc. Sorry I can't be of help.
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Old May 17, 2012, 04:34 PM   #21
dougpetro
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Resorts: Westgate Lakes Resort - Week 49 Never been there
Best info on Aruba anywhere

Check out the link below. This guy was born and raised in Aruba. Life has apparently taken him away from Aruba but he still vacations there. This is a very in depth reference guide to the island. Check it out before your leave. Eateries, site seeing, shopping... this booklet covers it all.

http://www.arubakid.com/booklet.htm

We are going to Aruba in 2 weeks. We have been there 3 times before and this has become our go to island. We have been to a lot of the other islands and this is our favorite. Great place to vacation.

Have fun.

Doug
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Old May 21, 2012, 03:43 PM   #22
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Just came home from two weeks at the Marriott ocean club. We rented a car for a couple of days for we were going from the airport to a hotel for one night and then checking into the Ocean club and then grocery shopping etc.
Then we didn't need it anymore.
There are many restaurants within walking distance from the surf club and a nice mall across the street.
Most of the activities will be at the resort and if you want to leave once in a while, i would just take a cab.
The cab rates are regulated by the government and the rates will be changing the in August, 2012.....They were on a three year contract so rates were very reasonable . However the rates will be going up after August. You can get the cab rates online. However, we hardly ever needed transportation. HOWEVER, with a three year old, I am not sure about how you feel about no car seat in the back of the cab. Not sure what Aruba regulations are about that.
You will also find alot of informaton on the Marriott forum about the Surf Club.
We loved Aruba and would go back tomorrow!

Last edited by carolbol; May 21, 2012 at 03:48 PM.
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Old May 24, 2012, 03:21 PM   #23
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Wife and I were at MSC last week... first time at the Marriott but we've been often to Aruba.

A couple of dining suggestions...

we tried Bavaria for the first time... not bad.. and actually very good german biers and the food was darn near perfect. The interior is pretty basic.. no frills.. but good food and fairly cheap. Bavaria is close to the Marriott.. right out the driveway.. down to the light.. left and then an immediate left into the small plaza.. you'll see Bavaria and a Thai place (both co-owned by the same owners)

Also Sol Mare (again.. right out of driveway down to first traffic light.. make left and approx half mile down the road on right hand side). Phenomenal italian food .. good prices. You have to try the Parmigiana Formaggio ..amazing!
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Old May 31, 2012, 06:41 PM   #24
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SO EXCITED! just booked my airfare - $500 per person nonstop - wish it was $400 but at least its nonstop (from boston)!

CANNOT WAIT!
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Old May 31, 2012, 07:07 PM   #25
channimal
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that seems to be the going airfare lately.. at least on UA .. Have fun!!

Wife and I are in the process of buying 3 weeks.. different resorts but consecutive weeks .. we LOVE Aruba

ENJOY!!
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