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“Nice bar, nothing more” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Charlie's Bar & Restaurant

Charlie's Bar & Restaurant
Ranked #2 of 13 Restaurants in San Nicolas
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$0 - US$30
Cuisines: Caribbean, Bar, Pub, International
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Cheap Eats, Bar Scene, Local cuisine
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Drinks, Full Bar, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff
Description: Charlie’s Bar & Restaurant was founded on September 18, 1941 by a Dutch couple, Charles and Marie Brouns. They chose their location in San Nicolas as it was close to the large Lago Refinery: this provided a steady stream of clientele in the form of seamen, contractors, and oil workers.Over the years, Charlie’s Bar became a destination returned to by countless friends from the past, accompanied by new patrons anxious to visit what has become an iconic island institution…”If you haven’t been to Charlie’s you don’t know Aruba!”Today, Charlie’s Bar is recognized as one of the Top Ten Bars in the Caribbean; and is a must see destination for first time visitors who will undoubtedly encounter and enjoy the company of many repeat clientele from literally all over the world. Everyone comes for the ambiance; the real connoisseurs are here to enjoy the intercontinental cuisine offered by Charlie’s Menu. Everything from jumbo shrimp to fine tenderloin steaks and fresh local seafood are at your beck and call. The menu is varied and prepared fresh each and every day try our “Honeymoon Sauce” with your entrée (if you like things real hot) or tone it down with our Creole style of preparation. Daily specials and home made snacks round out the menu for the inquisitive diner.Presently, your host, Charlito (the third generation Charlie) says, “Everything we do is focused on one thing, creating an unforgettable memory that will leave you wanting to return.”
Level Contributor
89 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Nice bar, nothing more”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 November 2013

A lot has already been written about Charlies bar. It's a great place to have a drink and look around at all the collected items. The menu is fairly limited. Prices too high. The food quality is ok, but no more than that. Still a must see in Aruba.

  • Visited November 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank JBvanB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montsy, Guest Relations Manager at Charlie's Bar & Restaurant, responded to this review, 1 December 2013
Dear JBvanB, thank you for your review and visit.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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301 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    155
    88
    32
    11
    15
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Omaha, Nebraska
Level Contributor
53 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Best Lunch Ever!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 November 2013

We stopped for lunch at Charlie's on our way to Baby Beach. It is a drive from Palm Beach but we found it easily, with the signs posted as we entered San Nicholas. Charlie's has an eccentric collection of items from previous guests, so upon entering you certainly don't expect anything but typical "bar" food. We were absolutely blown away by the amazing gourmet lunch we enjoyed. Don't come here looking for a burger, they don't even offer one. What they offer changes daily but what we sampled far exceeded our expectations for that day. One of our group tried the homemade lobster ravioli with pesto sauce, one had the seafood combo, one had the steak, and I had a combo of pork tenderloin and shrimp. Each dish had its own sauce which Charlie makes from scratch for each meal he prepares. We all sampled the variety, and each of us was overwhelmed by the amazing flavors! I have to say we went in thinking lunch, and came away thinking it was one of the most amazing meals we ate on our entire trip (and we had some very amazing meals!) Charlie talked with us personally to describe the menu and its offerings for the day. He was very entertaining and took so much pride in what he does, as a second generation cook/owner of the restaurant. I highly recommend this restaurant for lunch, it is well worth the drive. It will be a regular stop for us from now on! Thank you, Charlie, for an awesome lunch!!

  • Visited October 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Karen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montsy, Guest Relations Manager at Charlie's Bar & Restaurant, responded to this review, 1 December 2013
Dear Karen B, thank you for your great review! Hope to see you back soon. Cheers.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Albany, New York
Level Contributor
210 reviews
117 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 110 helpful votes
“Fun to See and Have a Beer”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 October 2013

A frequent visitor to Aruba said we HAD to go to Charlie's on our return from baby Beach. While there's a huge sign for Charlie's as you enter the town of San Nicholas, finding it was still a challenge. Charlie's decor is what makes it unique....memorabilia is EVERYWHERE!! You can spend a few hours there trying to see it all in between enjoying the local beers. BUT, don't expect to enjoy the food. We heard the shrimp were 'must-haves', but we were not impressed. The seafood chowder was more a vegetable broth. All that for what we thought was a hefty price. Our advice: see it once for a few draughts then eat somewhere else!

  • Visited October 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank HokieGal30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montsy, Guest Relations Manager at Charlie's Bar & Restaurant, responded to this review, 30 October 2013
Dear HokieGal30, thank you for your visit. We are happy to hear you enjoyed the decor. It contains 72 years of history and love from family and friends from all over the globe. We are sorry to hear the shrimps disappointed you. The shrimps among good company and drinks is what made Charlie's Bar famous. We would have been able to do something about your meals had you said so to us then. Nevertheless we will be extra vigilant and try to make sure that all our customers leave with a smile. Regards.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Davenport, Iowa
Level Contributor
133 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Not worth it!”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 October 2013

Went to Charlie's via a recommendation. Not much else available in San Nicholas, unfortunately. Charlie's is extremely over-priced for what you get!!! The atmosphere is interesting...filled to the rim and brim with everything you can think of from license plates to $$. Menu is limited, very limited and we thought it was overpriced. Large shrimp turned out to be small (not even medium size). Tenderloin was okay, but nothing to write home about.. totally covered in a wine sauce!! not the greatest. I would recommend eating somewhere else. We were there on a Thursday for the 'carnivale' night, but that also turned out to be a little bit of a dud. Felt bad for people on tours who paid $$ to attend carnivale, as it was only a few street vendors selling jewelry and various foods' very disappointed in this little trek.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank goodboysammy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montsy, Guest Relations Manager at Charlie's Bar & Restaurant, responded to this review, 19 October 2013
Dear goodboysammy, thank you for your visit. We are sorry we did not live up to your expectations. The downside of having too high of an expectations is to get disappointed. We do our best to have our guests leave with a memorable visit and wanting to return for more. Many do, thankfully. That is why they recommend us. We apologize for not having our mega shrimp during your visit. Sometimes depending on the season it is real hard to buy the bigger ones. In case the size is reduced we do increase the quantity served to compensate. As for the steak sauce some people just keep asking for more. But we agree that others would just like it on the side and this can always be communicated too your waiter. As for the prizes we encourage future costumers to visit our website and judge for themselves. We offer a complete meal without any extra costs for side orders ect etc. Regards.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Awesome”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 September 2013

My wife and I, where walking around and I stumbled upon this bar, we walked in not knowing that our experienc was going to be amazing, Great service great bar tender Luie very very nice, the restaurant incredible!!!!! Highly recommend

  • Visited September 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Sdehoys
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montsy, Guest Relations Manager at Charlie's Bar & Restaurant, responded to this review, 19 October 2013
Dear Sdehoys, thank you!!! We are glad you had an awesome time. Special regards to you and your wife from Luis!!! He remembers you where such a nice couple and is happy to have served you.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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