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“First time in Aruba - Will be back as soon as possible”

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Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Oranjestad
Certificate of Excellence
Wharton, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“First time in Aruba - Will be back as soon as possible”
Reviewed 13 August 2014

We stayed in the Renaissance Aruba Resort and Casino in the family oriented Ocean Suites section. The room was very nice, but was showing some wear and tear. They are renovating all of the rooms by November and we really liked the location of our room and the incredible Ocean Front views from the 5th floor. The maid service was exceptional and Lourdes and others very accommodating. We were able to get two very comfortable roll away beds for our children (12 year old boy/10 year old girl) in lieu of the older uncomfortable pull out couch bed (which will soon be replaced). We felt very at home here.

The hotel is being renovated so we are excited to see how everything turns out when everything is done. The overall feel of the hotel is a little more cosmopolitan than the other Marriott properties in Aruba (which we visited for an afternoon). Those properties are on Palm Beach and were great in their own right, but we really liked being right in the heart of Oranjestad and we enjoyed the international feel of this hotel. We also liked how laid back the hotel was with no issues around using chairs by the pools or the lagoon. We weren't all that thrilled with how the other Marriott properties seemed to have very crazy rules around reserving chairs. We walked into town almost every night and enjoyed many of the local restaurants including Que Pasa, Iguana Joe's, The Dutch Pancake House, Pincho's, Casa Tua and others. I felt very comfortable walking around at night as well. We also went to the Bon Bini festival which is right across the street from the hotel. My wife and I enjoyed it but the kids wanted to move along as fast as possible. It's a really nice festival that is sponsored by the local Arubans with singing, dancing, drinks and great homemade food.

The hotel is located on the waterfront but there's no large beach access directly on this property. You can take a boat shuttle to the private island which we did one day, but we really just preferred hanging out by the large pool and lagoon area. The pool bar was terrific with 2 for 1 drinks from 3-6 every day. Julio and Wagner were terrific bartenders and introduced us to some great drinks as well as the wonderful local Balashi and Balashi Chill beers (can't find any stateside yet).

Two small drawbacks to this hotel are the open air lobby and the lack of any real kid's game room or other activities. The open air lobby seems like a good concept, but when I rented a car at the Hertz desk, I was eaten alive by mosquitoes that didn't seem to be anywhere else on the island. There's also not a lot happening in the lobby, but that's okay because the Market Place open air mall is right next door. The kids room had an old ping pong table and could use some updating. Overall the activities were pretty thin if you're looking for that. Luckily there was so much else to do around Oranjestad and the rest of the island. This is probably something that will be part of the many renovations going on there.

Rent a car and explore the island yourself if you enjoy that over taking a tour. It's very easy to get around the island from tip to tip (20 miles long). We enjoyed Baby Beach, the California Lighthouse, Casabari Rock, the Butterfly Farm (second time is free) and the Alto Vista chapel. You can rent a car for a day or two and then keep extending it if you want. We rented one for 4 days during our 7 day vacation. The Butterfly Farm is amazing especially for amateur photographers, kids, parents and anyone else who is seeking joy, beauty and wonder in Aruba.

A week and a half back from Aruba and all that I can think about is how to get back there as soon as possible!

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Andy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Coral Springs, FL
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2014

My girlfriends and I wanted to do a last minute getaway, and we decided to check out this hotel. We were not disappointed... the décor and everything about this place was just awesome! Modern, reasonably priced, clean, and close to shopping, beaches and tourist attractions. I would definitely recommend to anyone going to vacation in Aruba.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Zekeia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Killingworth, Connecticut
Level Contributor
304 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 152 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2014

We just returned from our third trip to the Renaissance Aruba Resort and Casino and after some much needed renovations, it's better than ever. We stayed on the adult exclusive side and all of the guest rooms are finished being renovated but renovations continue in common areas such as the Aquarius Restaurant and the Crystal Casino. The King Adult Exclusive room was much improved over the previous room design but the renovations do seem a bit sloppy. We had a small piece of molding missing on the floor and some of the painting is sloppy. It just appears that they've rushed to get rooms completed. The bedding was comfortable and we had no problem with the spa shower leaking as others have reported. It is a spa shower and it is necessary to stand in the area that is enclosed and also direct the shower head away from the opening. We noticed many more lounge chairs at the private island and had no problem finding a shady spot. It does seem like the airport may have switched runways as there was a lot more airport noise than in past years. I'm guessing that the runway previously used for landings is now being used for take offs. However, this was a minor distraction. Children were not an issue at the adult exclusive areas either. We noticed a few kids coming over to feed the flamingos and iguanas at the beach but they left quickly and were well behaved. We were much more upset by 2 different large crowds of adult guests ( one a bridal party) that were rather loud, obnoxious and drunk who thought the beach was their own private resort.

The best part of this resort is the staff. We were welcomed back by our favorite wait staff Sugeiry and Elizabeth who remember us from past visits. Even the concierge said " I remember you from last year." We can't wait to go back next summer.

Room Tip: The renovations are completed on the adult exclusive side. Room renovations are continuing on the f...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank MM8803
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2014

I visited aruba in June this year 2014. Arrived at the renaissance hotel and after booking an apartment with 2 separate rooms with Thompson UK! that would have an en suite or separate compartment as i would be traveling with my father. However on arival we had been booked a small room with one double bed! This wasn't the hotels fault I assume Thompson. We spoke to our thomspon rep on more than 3 occasions and every time asked for conformation of the correct room. Unfortunately we had to spend an extra £480 for a room at the Renaissance Ocean suites across the road. Which still wasnt what we needed but had to make doas the first one was not appropriate to say the least.

The main part of the renaissance hotel, The Marina is situated within a shopping mall above the shops. You have to go up the escalators to get to it. Even after arriving at the lobby if you look up all you can see is windows from the rooms. All still with in the mall.

The appearance on arrival is very nice, appealing, but you can never shake the sensation you are in a mall and lack the privacy of hotel grounds.

We did have a look at the hotel room just to be nosy, it was very small, was situated through a long maze of corridors within what felt like a high rise flat. Also heard a rowdy group of guys next door. So Ocean suites it was!

A small golf buggy will take you between the Marina and the Ocean suites which is quick and handy. If not its literally across the road.

On arrival to the Ocean suites like The Marina, it was beautiful presented, open, welcoming, friendly, was quiet and was a low rise building with a few small shops near by.

It has 3 pools at the back all the same depth I believe. But around 4 ft deep. It also had a private beach area which was quiet for the first week of the holiday and was lovely. Not many people in the lagoon water so was ideal and perfect.

Staff were always friendly, kind, polite, welcoming. The room was ok. Im not overly fussed on a perfect modern hotel room but I do dislike dark rooms with not much light! Like others have mentioned all it needs it a lick of paint but the decor and furniture are nice. 2 tvs in one suite. We were on the ground floor near one of the restaurants so could easily run to the bar or the pool, via our back door. However despite there being sun loungers out on our terrace, there were so many mosquitos you couldn't even sit there for 2 minutes. But hey you are in a caribbean island so i wont complain. But it just meant the room was quiet dark with the door closed all the time. I felt a little caged in as not much light came in which eventually got to me.

The ocean suites is family friendly and I believe the main hotel across the road is adult only.

Now onto the renaissance food, unfortunately as much as I wish I could say only good things about the hotel, for me the food wasnt very nice! (sorry) I was a all-inclusive guest so had a choice of, i think 4 out of 6 Of their restaurants.

The Captains corner being one of them is within the Ocean suites grounds but is for all to use. It is set in a wooden build huts and is very beautiful, small and clean, they have a netting up so no birds can come in. But In the mornings you will often see an iguana or two or the odd neon green lizard wondering around near your table or the buffet area. :)

The food was generic, not much choice or variety over the 2 weeks we were there. I was very disappointed and I ate the same thing practically every night. However it was edible.

For me being in the Caribbean I like to feel like the food is extremely fresh, healthy, cleansing and makes you say wow, that was nice.
Captains corner, was open for breakfast lunch and dinner. We tried Aquarius, which is there sister restaurant in the renaissance mall & sadly it was the same menu just in a posher location! But you do get lobster, spider crab legs, tuna etc all cooked in front of you.. but thats it everything else is the same as C.C

Im a pudding/dessert/cake lover and I think i tried a teeny piece of every dessert they had and ate none of them. :( But I suppose food wise that may come with the territory of all-inclusive? Alot of the guests there where from america and often stayed for 4 days so the turn over was quick and new faces everyday.

Unfortunately as much as I liked the staff at the renaissance ocean suites and its location was useful. The dark room and lack of variety and healthy, flavourful food, puts me off staying again for a long period of time. If I was unable to find a hotel and had to stay there I wouldn't be to disappointed. If I do go there again, I will definitely pop back to visit the staff and have a cold frozen drink. The hotel also backs out onto Willemena park which is a nice quiet clean, well kept (like the rest of aruba) park. Full of Iguanas.

Renaissance is in Oranjestaad so you are always by the shops, and the bus station place is a 5 minute walk away. Also small note, you have to pay for wifi in your room. or the lobbies are free.

I have visited aruba before. I came back to aruba as I didn't really enjoy it the first time and everyone else I know loves it. During our stay this time round, we bought a day pass to the rui hotel for £50 english pounds each. Which allowed you full access of there restaurants, drinks, beaches, pools, evening shows. From 9am till 9pm
The hotel room we visited of a friend in there was very nice, and had a nice view. The reason Im mentioning this is. We had breakfast, lunch and dinner in there and the food terrible. there were flys in the eating area, food was awful, it was a giant cafeteria that was noisy, loud, busy and dingy. I felt anxious and overwhelmed by its chaos.
I haven't given up on aruba, as it is such a nice island people wise. Im sure there must be somewhere or a hotel that is more low key, and makes you feel like you are in aruba rather than any other resort anywhere in the world.

Aruba has shopping area, malls, supermarkets not all in close proximity but a ride on aruba clean, air conditioned busses will take you wherever you need to go.

If you love culture, tranquility, laid back, holidays that will take you back to nature and simplicity. Aruba may not be the destination.

But if you like all inclusive, resort environments, touristy vibe, in a safe, clean island often sparse and not to fussed about local or traditional cuisine, then aruba is the place to do it!


Good and bad points about Aruba

Bad:
Aruba is very tourist based. If your not a sun worshiper, drinker or foody, activity person theres not really many other things to do.
For me Aruba could get too hot. I know this to be true of having friends and family on the island who open will tell you yesterday was far too hot. I stayed inside.
Quiet Island adapted to the tourists that visit, food, culture
not much rain. we encountered in 2 weeks 20 minutes maximum of rain!
dry island so not much flora and fauna

Good points,
clean, very safe, super friendly, kind hearted people. I have countless stories from this trip and the last of locals, helping us out to find a location etc.
Arubians speak 4 languages so they can be speaking spanish to one customer, then dutch then english and are very patient, polite and helpful.
Aruba has some great events outside of the tourist area and things to see. I wish they were advertised more so the tourists can see other parts of aruba rather than the tip of their sun lounger.
Great tour available also.

Like I said I haven't given up on Aruba, so if any one knows of a more low key, chilled out, genuine caribbean experience part of the island please, contact me or point me in the right direction :)

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank kage88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ArubaHospitality, Director of Operations at Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 13 August 2014
Dear Kage,

Thank You for your candid observations from your recent stay at Renaissance Aruba. We also appreciate your comments with regards to the layout, amenities & services that our Resort offers to its valued guests & more so your comments about the general "cleanliness, safety, super friendly, kind hearted people" of Aruba. We are also in the process of completing the room renovation of our Ocean Suites, section of the Resort which you stayed, & would hope to welcome you back in the near future.

Regards
Parimal Trivedi
Director of Operations
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oklahoma City
Level Contributor
153 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2014

10 Year Anniversary trip
We split our stay up with 3 nights downtown at Renaissance Ocean suites and 4 nights at the Holiday Inn on Palm Beach.
We stayed here from August 2nd - August 5th 2014. We had a room at the ocean suites hotel overlooking the pool area and the ocean. The room was recently remodeled and was very nice and clean. Something that is a very big deal to us is that the air conditioning worked GREAT.

Dining
Upon checking in they offered us a discount for the breakfast buffet for $15. per person per day. We took advantage of this for all 3 mornings. The first morning we ate breakfast at the outdoor restaurant at the ocean suites. The restaurant was screened in but still had several birds inside of it. The birds were not shy and you had to keep an eye on them or they would be on your plate. The next 2 days we ate at the restaurant at the Marina hotel. It is indoors so no bird issues.

Negatives
Birds in breakfast buffet restaurant
Elevators had no ventillation in them. In the afternoons they were very hot.
Drinks expensive at bars. No happy hour. 20oz Balashi beer $9.
Hotel is located downtown area and most shops close at 6pm not much to do other than casino
Sunday downtown most shops and restaurants closed all day

Positives
Very nice pool area including man made beach area
Staff all extremely nice
Awesome Air conditioning in rooms
Private island is beautiful and plenty of room and chairs. Not crowded at all.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Bluehcky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2014

We stayed at the adult exclusive Marina Tower. Overall it was a very nice place. If you're interested in shopping it is the perfect location, sitting on top of the Renaissance mall with all of the high end stores. We chose the all inclusive package and the food was very good. The only down sides were 1. the swim up bar was located at the family side and not at the adults only pool and 2. the shower has a bad design that leaves the bathroom floor wet after every shower... the whole bathroom floor. The private island was VERY nice. If you like pink flamingos (and who doesn't, right?) they are very people friendly at Flamingo Beach on the island. We were able to feed them and take pictures with them...loved it!

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank BeachBunnyTx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
38 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 August 2014

Because I knew they generally only accommodate parties of 4 on the family side of the resort, I called ahead of time. We have a family of 5, but one of us didn't decide to go until the last minute. They were more than willing to accommodate us. The view from our balcony was spectacular and our room was quite nice. The staff was super-friendly and they even have their own island (the only resort in Aruba that can make this boast). The separate island was just a short shuttle-boat ride away and was as beautiful as you'd expect. Snorkeling there was amazing!! The calm cove allowed for leisurely floating and, while snorkeling, you could see a sea urchin next to a dory, a barracuda swimming past a rock with a lobster hiding beneath. The many colorful fishes and abundant sea-life were stunning. The resort itself has it's own salt-water lagoon and is situated near many shops, restaurants, and a large casino. Cabs were easy to catch right outside and there was plenty to do and see within walking distance. The concierge desk was very helpful with booking excursions and our time there was awesome. I would definitely stay there again!

Room Tip: Ask for an ocean view!
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank John S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino

Property: Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino
Address: L G Smith Boulevard 82 | Aruba, Oranjestad, Aruba
Region: Caribbean > Aruba > Oranjestad
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Oranjestad
#1 Family Hotel in Oranjestad
#1 Spa Hotel in Oranjestad
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Oranjestad
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino 4*
Number of rooms: 558
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
At the newly renovated Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino, we Live Life to Discover. Here in the heart of Oranjestad, you will find yourself in the middle of the excitement, and our entire staff is ready to inspire you. You don't have to go far to experience the real Caribbean, it's right outside your door. Our luxury hotel in Aruba offers a perfect location steps from Oranjestad's vibrant modern downtown boutiques, giving you endless opportunities to indulge your inner shopaholic. Get the thrill of a hand of poker in one of our two casinos, enjoy one of our RLifeLIVE events and revel in the Aruban culture in a way you can only experience from the heart of the city. The resort offers two distinct experiences, the hip and lively adult-exclusive Renaissance Marina Hotel and the Renaissance Ocean Suites, a sophisticated one-bedroom suite accommodation. Both provide exclusive access to a special discovery, Renaissance Island, with Aruba's only private beaches and a truly tropical experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Renaissance Aruba Hotel Oranjestad
Renaissance Aruba Resort And Casino
Renaissance Hotel Aruba
Renaissance Oranjestad
Oranjestad Renaissance
Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino

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