Alto Vista Chapel, Renaissance Island, Arashi Beach
Amazing Aruba! Trip Report
Words cannot describe how it feels to gaze out the window of the jet,as it touches down on our beloved island of Aruba! We quickly deplaned and looked at all the sad people waiting to return home(they had experienced Omar) Aruba Customs took no time at all, and soon we were in a taxi heading for the Renaissance Ocean Suites. The Renaissance was overbooked due to the fact that some 1st floor ocean suites had experienced flooding. There were tons of Interval International guests, and some were sent to the Marina Tower. The girls at the front desk were exasperated, as some guests were unkind to say the least. We passed the time by chatting with other guests in line, would you believe the couple behind us was from Tonawanda, NY, twenty minutes from where we live.
Our check-in was smooth as silk. Thanks to Liliana, we were able to stay in our corner oceanfront for the entire two weeks. Ahhhh!!!! She is a saint. After a refreshing dip in the pool, we leisurely unpacked and headed for dinner at the Driftwood. Loved the stroll with the warm tradewinds! Francine, the owner, was happy to see us, and had a very positive attitude, although it was apparent that business was down.The seafood was fresh and fabulous as usual. Service was excellent. My husband left a large cash tip, which was much appreciated. Smiles galore!
Saturday morning I cooked breakfast, and we made a B-Line to the Private Island. Storm damage was limited to some beach erosion and the Spa Cove was wiped out. They had brought in heavy equipment, and collapsed the deck to the Flamingo side. Workers were right on it, and it was totally repaired by Monday. Super Snorkeling by the rocks on the family side of the Island. I swear the fish stay in place from year to year. Rest and relaxation for the afternoon on my $1 Target floatie and on the hammock. Saturday was Lobster Night at the Waterfront Crabhouse with friends. Great food and service. Sang along with an entertainer named Tony (where Tessa the Tiger used to reside) We were having such a wonderful time that we even had the wait staff singing and swinging to Neil Diamond, "Sweet Caroline" BA, BA, BA good times never were so good, SO GOOD, SO GOOD, SO GOOD!!!
On Sunny Sunday we ventured out early to go grocery shopping and hunt for bargains at the Flea Market. In order to save money, this is the first vacation that we did not rent a car. We took the Bus! At $2.30 round trip, it was quite a good value. The L10 takes you up to the Marriott and back, stopping all along the way. Brought insulated thermos beach bags from home. Stocked up on the basics, Dutch cheese, yummy baked goods, sausage, etc. Three grocery stores are in a row. Super Food Rules! (see superfoodaruba.com) They even had a great selection of wine, for a fraction of what you would pay at a restaurant. Combined with our duty free liquor purchased in the $15-$20 range at the NC airport, we saved $$$. The Ocean Suites have a blender in the kitchen, remember?
By Sunday evening we were well into a vacation mode. Decided to cook in our suite, my husband affectionaltely named it "The Aruba Chop House". Watched the baseball game and retired early. After all Monday was the 10AM meeting with Brian. Stay tuned...
Sounds like you had an absolutely wonderful time. These trip reports are pleasant readings, especially from contented year-after-year Aruba returnees...such a word? In any event, it is a shame that some of those guests were rude to employees. Situations like "Omar," are not caused by them; rather circumstances beyond their control.
Well, again, thanks for your "trip report." Hope that the entire vacation ends up as pleasant as this one.
Alto Vista Chapel, Renaissance Island, Arashi Beach
The Renaissance Meeting
Good Morning Aruba Lovers,
For all of you wondering about the meeting here's the deal:
*New beach and patio furniture, plenty everywhere.
*Flat screens on each floor are up and running!
*New French Doors are being installed for energy efficiency.
*Pool has been repaired, tiles replaced, painted.
*Refurbishing put on hold due to high volume of guests.
*New key card machines installed for access to private island.
*Captains Cove is undergoing remodeling as we speak.
*New bow style shower rods, I am going to get them for home.
*New grip bars for tub.
*You must sign a declaration that you will NOT SMOKE.
*Marriott will fine you $250 if you do.
*Electricity on the island has doubled in price.
*Casinos are humming with new state of the art slots.
*Owners receive Gold Card/15% off food and all drinks.
*This includes pool bar at happy hour, before service charge.
*If you eat at LG Smith or Aquarius you also are give casino cards.
*$5 free play per person.
*Souvenir coins are also given. Lighthouse, Iguana,Divi,etc.
*Marina Lobby is undergoing extensive remodeling.
*Dazzling all glass Cinderella Staircase by Conti glass.
*We met the owner, does all the work at Vegas Casinos.
*Prices of units are rising. Most people are snapping up 2/3 wks.
*Renaissance continues to thrive! A great investment!!!
Tomorrow, my review of restaurants... to be continued...
Sue the Teacher, no relation to Joe the Plumber!