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“great beach, not so great hotel accomodations”

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Tamarijn Aruba All Inclusive
Ranked #3 of 6 Hotels in Oranjestad
Certificate of Excellence
new york
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“great beach, not so great hotel accomodations”
Reviewed 4 May 2009

The Beach is spectacular. Very private, clean, sand is white, water is so blue you can see your feet.
Rooms are very outdated. Motel style, no a/c in bathrooms. Great views however as all rooms are on the beach and oceanfront. Access to beach via room is great, but no way to lock doors behind you.
The all inclusive option is best way to go, the drinks are plenty, pizza bar is open almost 24 hrs and is great. Buffet is good for breakfast, but not so hot for lunch or dinner. Parrot Bay is a great restaraunt,( located at sister hotel) make reservations with hotel as you will end up eating there every night.
Hotel is not very accomodating, slow and not so friendly. Been to Aruba 5 times, and have never complained about staff until this location.....also be aware that there is no medic on staff , and there was an injury while we were there....good thing that guests were able to help out until ambulance arrived.
If you want to spend alot of time on the beach, then this is great, but don't expect any upscale ammenities or service.

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank JryanNewYork
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Lake Tahoe, Ca
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2009

The Fabulous:
Location, location, location: After touring the resorts on the free bikes provided, this was the only hotel with rooms right on the sand. Perfect for anybody who likes to spend the entire day on the beach. No elevators, stuffy lobbies, or shoe requirements. Just open the sliding glass door and walk out onto the baby soft sand.

The Weather: Perfect. Hot with a nice cool breeze.

The Beach; Turquoise blue just like the pictures. Very calm and warm water with soft sand as far as you can touch.

The Food: Really good for an all inclusive. Enjoyed all the restaurants and buffets. The Red Parrot over at the Divi was our favorite.

The Not-so-fab:

The Rooms: Very small and old. After a day or two you forget all about it because your on the beach outside the door the entire time.

Service: Could have been the week (Spring Break). Restaurant service was good, but the snack bars and bars were very slow and unfriendly. I did not find the people to go out of their way to smile even with plenty of tips. By the end of the week, we were calling it the "unhappy" island. Staff seemed miserable.

Aruba itself: We loved it since we are huge beach people,but not really a whole lot of other things to do. Caves and Baby Beach was fun for the kids, but the island is definately not the Caribbean Tropical island we had expected. Aruba is an amazing beach and ocean on a very barron island.

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank tahoefam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cape cod
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 April 2009

Omg, we loved the TAM... we were there from April 9-16th we had a great room.
the place was booked solid and it never felt crowed. The food was great....all of it!
The people were so friendly and the rooms were clean, we always got a smile and a hello.. I don't understand how people could complain about the Tam!!! this is not a 5 Star resort but the view from your room is more then a 5 star, and for the price are you kidding me? we made so many new friends it just a perfect vacation.. we are going back next year for sure.. we are already panning for a bunch of us to get together and all meet up next April 1010.... feel free to contact me for any questions that you may have...

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank shusun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philadelphia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 April 2009

Stayed at the Tamarijn for a week with wife and 2 children [12, 6]. Everyone loved it. Now my wife is a little picky and didn't like the bracelet thing but other than that is was great. Food was very good even the buffet, [ask for whatever you want they will make it for you]. The girls at the towel and bike booth were great. the room clean up was mixed a couple days but we just grabbed towels and were ok. The beech was absolutely beautiful. We all wish we could move there but we are back to reality now. We will go back though can't wait. Just remember one thing book your reservations for the restaurants as soon as you get there

Stayed April 2009, travelled with family
Helpful?
6 Thank apfar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Swindon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
48 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 April 2009

Well, what can I say, Aruba was so great that I wish I could live there. 24/7/365 pure sunshine all year around. People friendly and the history is interesting.
I first arrived at this hotel in May 08, the hotel staff handed you a cold flannel and cold bottle of water whilst you waited for the receptionist to call you over, we waited about five mins and were on our way to the room within mins. The room was lovely, and the view well the view was amazing, stood out in the balcony and there was the sea, you walked down a flight of steps and you were on the beach. It was fantastic. We went all inclusive, highly recommended. The food was amazing, they had three restaurants on site which you could go to and then the sister hotel had two restaurants which you could also go to as part of all inclusive, no extra pay. Drinks were very nice, especially the cocktails, they have daily specials on cocktails, try the aruba vice and the strawberry daiquiri which was lovely jubbly haha. Entertainment was always very good, three pools, two hot tubs, a mini shop, and clothes shop. I went for my friends wedding and the hotel planned it to perfection, the photos were amazing, and if you are thinking about honeymooning and getting married, I would recommend it, I am not married myself but I would consider possibly doing it there.
They have a chinese/japanese/thai restaurant, they have a grill house which is good, you cook your own steak, basically the middle of the table is like a heated grill. Then you have the main restaurant which is lovely, theme nights every night. They cook your steak etc to the way you want it.
Lots of trips to do, we did one around the whole island, that was very good and interesting, then we did one to a water park which I am sorry I cannot remember the name, that was very very good, designed for adults and children, we all turned in to kids instantly and were on the slides ourselves, but aren't we all kids at heart!

I cannot think of any problems with this hotel at all, or the country in general, its such a lovely place.

  • Stayed May 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Siangiles1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
rocky hill
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2009

My wife and I and another couple stayed at the Tamarijn (the J is silent) or Tami for one week in mid-March 2009 and we had a wonderful time. Aruba is safe, the resort is clean, the service was better than average and the beach beautiful. All in all - a great get-a-way. In this review I would like to address a few different subjects than other reviews and just say a little on what everyone else writes about.

WHEN TO GO: Find out when the rainy season is. Aruba's rainfall is only 12 inches a year so whatever rain falls isn't much or shouldn't last long.

WHERE TO STAY: This was very important to us. We did not want to stay where it was noisy or too crowded, but we also did not want to walk too far to the restaurants and lobby. If you have a choice and are looking for quiet and fewer people on the beach try buildings 2300, 2400 or 2500. We stayed in 2500 on the second floor, which is the last building on the left side of the resort facing the water. If you can, get a room at the end of any building as these have set-back patios that offer even more privacy. Building 2400 and 2500 also have solid dividers between patios whereas all the others have only a metal railing. The three buildings on either side of the main lobby are very busy, the beaches are crowded but you are very near the center of all activities. We liked the 2nd floor verses the first for privacy reasons. Although being able to walk out to the beach from your room is nice, you sacrifice privacy. Your patio is less than 10 feet from the boardwalk that runs across the beach and walkers glance at those on the 1st floor patios and can even see into the rooms. On the second floor you can kick back in your most casual attire and hardly anyone notices you. The second floor patios have a slatted roof. Building 2500 is only a 5 minutes walk from the Bunker Bar, which is open from 7am-7pm. It is also only 10 minutes to the restaurants and lobby unless you grab a golf cart.

RESORT TRANSPORTATION consists of golf carts holding 2 to 12 passengers, which circle the Tamarijn and Divi Divi very frequently. Rarely did we have to wait more than 5 minutes. When necessary we called the front desk for a ride and a cart arrived within minutes. These carts also take guests to the Divi Divi, Divi Links, Dutch Village, and the Alhambra Casino or the church near the casino on Sunday.

RESTAURANTS: Briefly. You can make reservations for the speciality restaurants up to 3 nights in advance. The Red Parrott (at the Divi Divi) is the best but not open every night. Papparizzi was so-so. The wait staff there was not very friendly or professional. Pizza de Tutti was okay for pizza and drinks but stay away from the sandwiches - they were inedible. The buffets at both the Divi and Tami were just fine although the Divi offers indoor dining for those who are skittish about the birds. For that special night out try the Flying Fishbone Restaurant. It is a 30 minute cab ride ($28 one-way) but worth the trip. The restaurant is located on the water and if want you can actually eat in the water. There are 6 tables set up at the waters edge but only for couples. Tables for 2 or more are in the sand so take off your shoes and wiggle your toes. The food is great but pricey (about $30 for an entree), service friendly and they never rush you.

THE BIRDS: Yes they are a nuisance at times but with a few precautions, like not leaving you food unattended, they won't bother you. Most are small finches, blackbirds or doves.

LIZARDS: We were very surprised to see very few of them and the ones we did see were only 12-18 long compared to the 4-6 footers we encountered in Cozumel. They are kinda cute, sometimes shy and only come out during the day. They are also vegetarians.

BUGS: We did not see one misquito, palmetto bug, roach, or beetle the entire stay and very few flies.

DRINKS: The many bars served just about anything you want; name brand alcohol, Heineken beer on tap plus local brands. I drink scotch and they had Dewers at every bar. The local beer was very good also. We found the service fast and friendly at all but the Pizza de Tutti only because of the many kids who hang out there to order pizza and soft drinks. For convenience we brought a 1 quart water bottle and had the bartender fill it up (4 drinks) thereby cutting down on the return trips and making it easier to carry back to the blanket than plastic cups.

POOLS: Guests of the Tami have access to the Tami pool, the Divi Divi pools PLUS the 3 pools at the Dutch Village which are small and mostly unused. Guests cannot use the Divi Links pool.

BEACH: The sand is almost white and very fine. The beach is beautiful, kept clean and the water calm although not too good for snorkeling close to the beach. There are great snorkeling or diving locations on other parts of the island. Saving beach chairs is necessary if you want one. Bring a few clothes pins to keep a towel attached to the chairs. It is windy on the beach. The staff does not monitor this and we found no problem with it. Perhaps at the resort center there may be fewer chairs.

ISLAND TOURS: We opted for taking a taxi instead of renting a jeep or booking a tour through the conceirge which was very expensive and too long. Renting a jeep seems the best bet until you realize there are no street signs or directions. We would have still been lost had we tried touring the island ourselves. Taking a taxi costs $46 per hour and in 2 hours you can see plenty: the fallen Natural Bridge, Baby Bridge, California Lighthouse, Alto Vista Chapel and the Casigri Rock Formation. Try to find a taxi driver who speaks English decently (ours was named Milton, as in Berle, and he was terriffic). He took us to places we would have never found and offered up volumns of local lore and facts, including the local theory on the Natalie Holloway disapperance.

In conclusion, we found this trip just great. It was the safest island or resort we've been to in the Caribbean or Mexico. The Tami is not a 4 or 5 star resort but still a great place to kick back and get a plam tree fix and to enjoy the sun, sand and whatever.

  • Stayed March 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank irex482
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bancroft, Canada
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2009

Absolutely amazing.. Dont even know where to begin. We were there for two weeks and I could have stayed at least a week longer. Very active resort, we stayed on the resort for the first week, didnt feel the need to leave, tons to do. Only thing we did was bike to town everyday, it was very refreshing and very interesting. It was a short bike ride, and their bikes were in well enough shape, I quite enjoyed riding the old style of bikes.

We did the rock climbing, ( I suggest the side closest to the building, its the easiest!!) We went swimming everyday in the ocean, the beach was beautiful, the water was amazing. The sun was always hot, the wind was very relieving. The only thing I'd watch for is, with the wind you dont realize how much sun your getting, my boyfriend burnt a few times. Reserve your beach huts early, but dont leave stuff unattended, this is the place where you'd have to worry about tourists, not locals. There was wind surfing, kayaking, rock climbing, biking, shuffle board, snorkeling, a giant chess board and many other activities on the resort to keep the most restless people busy. I believe they had a few special activities for the kids, but the people we went with didnt sign their kids up for it. Their little girl was quite shy.

The people... where do I begin?? They were amazing, Elwin, Eddie, John, Carmen, and many many more that took great care of us at the bars and snack bars. Pizza per tutti was our favourite place to hang out the nights we didnt feel like watching the shows, or after the shows. The bunker bar was probably my favourite, I liked its setting, very very tropical and gorgeous during the day. I recommend leaving a dollar bill for the maid everyday, they do an excellent job when really, they dont have to. Our bathroom was in top condition always, our beds were always kept nice and neat. Overall, the service and people there were extraordinary. After spending two weeks with them, I miss them greatly, I would go back just to give Eddie the photo we took with him.

Off the resort there are MANY MANY things to do, right in Oranjestad too. We went on a jeep safari tour, it was spectacular, our guide was great with us, very friendly. We went to see the caves, a few of the smaller natural bridges, passed through the donkey sanctuary, and lastly, got to spend an hour at Baby Beach. A very beautiful little lagoon and the south eastern point of Aruba. Clearest blue water, walk about 100metres and its only up to your waist. Very relaxing place, but dont expect to get free lawn chairs there. I believe it was $6.00 for one. Souveniers are expensive there as well, so dont expect to buy anything there, just make sure you bring a bathing suit, sunscreen and a towel on the trip with you and you'll make out just fine.

We also went horse back riding off the resort. If you go horse back riding be sure to go with Rancho la Ponderosa. There horses were healthy, happy, and very well trained. I believe I got their "worst" horse because I said I had been riding for 14 years. A mare named Princessesa, she was an absolute doll, and in fact more well behaved than my horse. She was slightly afriad of water, but I walked her right up to it no problem, just needed some trust is all. We took the trip to the Natural bridge, along the way we rode through the national park, up rock cliffs, along the cliffs of the ocean, (very neat, and not as iffy as it sounds) we galloped as much as we could, it was very very fun, and beginners were on the trip with us and they did just fine. In fact my boyfriend was a beginner and he loved every minute of it, raced with me even. The sights were gorgeous, be sure to have your camera in an easy place to get at, but make sure it isnt going to fall, or get lost because losing you camera isnt the main thing on your mind when you galloping on a horse. It sounds scary, but these horses are VERY well trained, and they are complete people lovers, they even stand there untied when you get off to see the natural bridges. Their are buses and fourwheelers going by, stray donkeys, goats of all sizes, and these horses couldnt care less.. You have to understand that they do the same trips day in and day out, nothing is going to surprise them so you have NOTHING to worry about. trust me, its a good experience go for it. As you can tell the horse back riding was by far my favourite part of the trip. By the way, no bugs, nice warm morning sun, just wear a pair of pants and you'll be fine. Ladies--- wear something very supportive under your shirts and dont wear soemthing that will pull on your neck!! Its Bumpy!!!

I cant get over how beautiful the beach was, the boardwalk made it very easy to get around, made for a nice long stroll from one side of the resort to another. The snack bars had tons of selection, if it can keep me busy for two weeks, you know its gotta be good. the buffets were pretty darn good, but I recommend making reservations for the Red Parrot, by far best restaurant there. Ginger was very good too. ( try the mango chicken noodles, SOOOOO delicious!!!) Dont forget you get access to the Divi resort as well, its very fun to go between resorts, plus if you like to walk, take the beach and then get a cool drink when you make it there! They charge you for a securtiy deposit box, but its worth getting one, we didnt worry about our passports or extra cash once. Friends of ours misplaced their key while horse back riding, it only cost $50.00 to get a lock smith in to make a new key and get the old lock out.

Aruba was more than I expected, it was absolutely amazing. We went to local malls, I bought a camera down there, a very very nice Panosonic Lumix that would have cost me big time if I went to the touristy places, they were very greatful I came to where the locals came, they gave me over $100.00 off of it. I still use this camera, and it takes amazing photos, some I might add onto here.

I'm going to Cuba in a week and I think that Aruba has heightened my expectations so much, I might pick everything about it apart. I dont think any resort could treat you much better, I have yet to find one and I travel a fair amount. I recommend Tamarijn to anyone, I spent less than what you'd think, and I got more than what I paid for for sure. It was an excellent trip, I want to make it a yearly one. Mostly, I miss the people, the town, the sun, and the beautiful beach. Also, my horse friend Princessesa, that made my trip an amazing experience.

  • Liked — The people
  • Disliked — Not enough time....
  • Stayed December 2008, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
8 Thank lysslloyd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Tamarijn Aruba All Inclusive

Property: Tamarijn Aruba All Inclusive
Address: J.E. Irausquin Blvd #41 | Druif Beach, Oranjestad, Aruba
Region: Caribbean > Aruba > Oranjestad
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Oranjestad
#3 Spa Hotel in Oranjestad
#3 Romantic Hotel in Oranjestad
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Oranjestad
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3 star — Tamarijn Aruba All Inclusive 3*
Number of rooms: 236
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
All oceanfront rooms on the mile-long beach make this lively resort the perfect choice for beach lovers. The Tamarijn Aruba is Aruba's hot spot on the beach where the fun never stops. There's plenty of activity day and night. Learn to windsurf, ride a bike on the boardwalk or climb the 30-foot rock climbing wall right on the sand. Kayaking and snorkeling are just steps from the rooms. When the sun goes down, the fun begins with lively music around the pool and theme shows. Or try your luck at the Alhambra Casino nearby. All Inclusive Amenities: • 10 Restaurants and grills • 8 Bars with daily drink specials • 4 Freshwater pools • Non-motorized water sports • Divi Winds Sports Center with fitness center • Bikes, beach volleyball, tennis clinic • Weekly water aerobics, yoga and Zumba classes • Lighted tennis courts • Nightly entertainment with theme nights • 30ft Rock climbing wall on the beach • Daily activities • Kids Fun Club for ages 5 - 12 • Free Wi-Fi throughout property ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tamarijn Aruba All Inclusive Hotel Oranjestad
Hotel Tamarijn
Aruba Tamarijn
Tamarijn Aruba Beach Resort
Tamarijn Aruba Beach Hotel

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