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Thread: Back to Aruba July 2012

  1. #11
    Senior Member lindon's Avatar
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    Thanks for the reports!

  2. #12
    Senior Member jpsphr's Avatar
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    Thank you and happy to oblige.

    Today was laid back. As we had committed to Marriott to listen to the timeshare pitch once again (disclosure - we are owners, but in Orlando,not Aruba), we decided we would look at Eagle Beach properties to get a comparison.

    First stop was Amsterdam Manor. It is no longer actively selling timeshare units but focusing on rentals. They had no rooms to show, so, we moved on.

    The next stop was Costa Linda. the Membership manager was happy to oblige, and showed us both a recently renovated two and a three bedroom unit. We liked the beach location for the relative quiet (compared to the OC). The property is dated, but the room renovations were very well done. The three bedroom is particularly enticing, as it has its own hot tub and grill, along with a huge living/dining area. It seemed obvious that they don't have the capital of a Marriott and are actively managed by their Association, whose photos are prominently displayed in the lobby. Anyone out there members or stayed there recently?

    Next, we walked to Bucuti Beach / Tara Suites. They are rental only, adult only and pretty darn awesome. It is a very different Aruba experience, since you lose the kitchen, the separate rooms but gain the exclusivity and luxury ambiance. Have to think about that one!

    Lastly, we stopped at Divi / Tamarijn. Again, liked the laid back atmosphere. However, for us, our annual Aruba week is a lot about picking new restaurants and revisiting favorites, so an all-inclusive makes less sense for our needs. If our former little ones were still semi-adults, it would make more sense, but not at this stage of our vacation lives.

    Back to the OC, where we have enjoyed our stays tremendously. Without waxing too philosophical, I guess life is always about trade-offs. Bucuti - pretty darn cool - especially adults -only and great, quiet location., no long-term commitment. Marriott - amazing service, rock-solid consistency and a pretty secure future. Costa Linda - uncertain future, great location, awesome three-bedroom unit but......

    So, we listened attentively to the pitch at Marriott, where they have a today - only deal (similar to last year's today - only deal). We didn't pull the trigger today, but there's always next year!

    Two years ago, I made a pact with DW to do the wash at the OC, since the Surf Club has in-room washer/drier but the OC is QUIETER! I get OC, she gets a laundry service - me. So, it was an afternoon of wash - check on progress and laying by the pool in the interim.

    Tonight back to an old favorite - Amadeus. It did not disappoint. The food was excellent. I had the Jamaican Ribs - tender and wonderfully seasoned and DW had the Veal Chop - equally as good, if not better. The wine is VERY reasonably marked up - Alamos Malbec for under $30. Frank provided a Lost Symphony after-dinner drink on the house. Great service and great food. We will be back.

    No gambling tonight, since we need to sleep off dinner and get ready for a snorkel trip with Aruba Bob. We're either getting older or were always lightweights to begin with.

    See you tomorrow.
    Last edited by jpsphr; 07-05-2012 at 11:15 PM.

  3. #13
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    Love it!!

    We love the Costa Linda and the room renovations are terrific.

    Amadeus= always delicious. Did you try the Lost Symphony liqueur ?


    Glad you are finding time for reporting to us.
    thanks
    Quote Originally Posted by jpsphr View Post
    Thank you and happy to oblige.

    Today was laid back. As we had committed to Marriott to listen to the timeshare pitch once again (disclosure - we are owners, but in Orlando,not Aruba), we decided we would look at Eagle Beach properties to get a comparison.

    First stop was Amsterdam Manor. It is no longer actively selling timeshare units but focusing on rentals. They had no rooms to show, so, we moved on.

    The next stop was Costa Linda. the Membership manager was happy to oblige, and showed us both a recently renovated two and a three bedroom unit. We liked the beach location for the relative quiet (compared to the OC). The property is dated, but the room renovations were very well done. The three bedroom is particularly enticing, as it has its own hot tub and grill, along with a huge living/dining area. It seemed obvious that they don't have the capital of a Marriott and are actively managed by their Association, whose photos are prominently displayed in the lobby. Anyone out there members or stayed there recently?

    Next, we walked to Bucuti Beach / Tara Suites. They are rental only, adult only and pretty darn awesome. It is a very different Aruba experience, since you lose the kitchen, the separate rooms but gain the exclusivity and luxury ambiance. Have to think about that one!

    Lastly, we stopped at Divi / Tamarijn. Again, liked the laid back atmosphere. However, for us, our annual Aruba week is a lot about picking new restaurants and revisiting favorites, so an all-inclusive makes less sense for our needs. If our former little ones were still semi-adults, it would make more sense, but not at this stage of our vacation lives.

    Back to the OC, where we have enjoyed our stays tremendously. Without waxing too philosophical, I guess life is always about trade-offs. Bucuti - pretty darn cool - especially adults -only and great, quiet location., no long-term commitment. Marriott - amazing service, rock-solid consistency and a pretty secure future. Costa Linda - uncertain future, great location, awesome three-bedroom unit but......

    So, we listened attentively to the pitch at Marriott, where they have a today - only deal (similar to last year's today - only deal). We didn't pull the trigger today, but there's always next year!

    Two years ago, I made a pact with DW to do the wash at the OC, since the Surf Club has in-room washer/drier but the OC is QUIETER! I get OC, she gets a laundry service - me. So, it was an afternoon of wash - check on progress and laying by the pool in the interim.

    Tonight back to an old favorite - Amadeus. It did not disappoint. The food was excellent. I had the Jamaican Ribs - tender and wonderfully seasoned and DW had the Veal Chop - equally as good, if not better. The wine is VERY reasonably marked up - Alamos Malbec for under $30. Frank provided a Lost Symphony after-dinner drink on the house. Great service and great food. We will be back.

    No gambling tonight, since we need to sleep off dinner and get ready for a snorkel trip with Aruba Bob. We're either getting older or were always lightweights to begin with.

    See you tomorrow.

  4. #14
    Senior Member SuperBunches's Avatar
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    Jun 2009
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    I love the beach (who doesn't?), anywhere that I can snorkel, The Donkey Sanctuary (much to the dismay of my daughter), the lighthouse.
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    Thank you for sharing your trip! I am very much enjoying your reports.

  5. #15
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Any Aruba beach...
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpsphr View Post
    The next stop was Costa Linda. Anyone out there members or stayed there recently?
    Check out

    My Two Weeks In Aruba..3/30 - 4/13

    Costa Linda 3/30 -4/13

    Next, we walked to Bucuti Beach / Tara Suites. They are rental only, adult only and pretty darn awesome. It is a very different Aruba experience, since you lose the kitchen, the separate rooms but gain the exclusivity and luxury ambiance. Have to think about that one!
    Some of their rooms have kitchenettes http://www.bucuti.com/rooms-rates-re...ungalow-suites

    Junior suites have a full kitchen
    http://www.bucuti.com/rooms-rates-reservations/rooms/junior-suites

    Lastly, we stopped at Divi / Tamarijn. Again, liked the laid back atmosphere. However, for us, our annual Aruba week is a lot about picking new restaurants and revisiting favorites, so an all-inclusive makes less sense for our needs.
    Divi Village and Links Villas are timeshare units with kitchens as well.

  6. #16
    Senior Member jpsphr's Avatar
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    Boca Catalina Beach Marriott properties Mangel Halto for Snorkeling
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    Thumbs up

    thanks Lisa. That is very helpful.

    BTW, today has been the best day of our trip for a number of reasons. I'll do a full day report later tonight, but the highlights so far have been:


    • an AMAZING return snorkel trip with Kent (Aruba Bob). My wife, who is a better swimmer than me is still tentative snorkeling. She had what she calls her "best adventure" in Aruba this morning. Kent literally took her by the arm at one point going over a deep water channel. I can't wait to see the photos. He and Stuart are the best.
    • A terrific lunch at Zeerover's. Fresh mahi, plantain and cornbread.
    • VINDICATION! It appears that Mirpas may be closed. So, the harsh berating I took from my DW over driving around the block a million times trying to find it may have to be retracted. I await confirmation, but the sign was off the building at 68 LG Smith Blvd. I called the other day and got no answer. Too early to gloat, but I'm feeling pretty confident. If it is closed, however, that tempers my glee, because we heard really good things about it and it's always sad to see a good place close. I think back to the "would you eat downtown?" thread.
    Last edited by jpsphr; 07-06-2012 at 02:48 PM.

  7. #17
    Junior Member
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    Feb 2012
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    Lacabana,Alhambra,Eagle Beach
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    16
    Enjoying your reports-getting me in Aruba mode-we will be arriving 2 weeks from today.Also I am a lover of the wheel and the bouncing ball- 17-5 -32 and 2 away on either side of the last spin,plus of course birthdays etc.,etc!! Enjoy

  8. #18
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    we have had 3 STAND out aruba adventures in 38 trips.

    1 was when we won enough in a casino to buy our first unit at lacabana

    2 was when we did the island tour by helicopter

    3rd was the ArubaBob snorkel tour with stuart.

    then there were 35 other trips that were great but no where like those trips with the terrific stand outs!!

    mirpas.........when we were in aruba in may for the 2 weeks, we notice that it was closed more than open. but we did not think much of it, actually did not pay much attention as it was not on our list.

    it had been getting good reviews.
    i hope it is not closed, but maybe it is :-(

    continue having fun!!

    please post the photos that kent and stuart took of you.

    Quote Originally Posted by jpsphr View Post
    thanks Lisa. That is very helpful.

    BTW, today has been the best day of our trip for a number of reasons. I'll do a full day report later tonight, but the highlights so far have been:


    • an AMAZING return snorkel trip with Kent (Aruba Bob). My wife, who is a better swimmer than me is still tentative snorkeling. She had what she calls her "best adventure" in Aruba this morning. Kent literally took her by the arm at one point going over a deep water channel. I can't wait to see the photos. He and Stuart are the best.
    • A terrific lunch at Zeerover's. Fresh mahi, plantain and cornbread.
    • VINDICATION! It appears that Mirpas may be closed. So, the harsh berating I took from my DW over driving around the block a million times trying to find it may have to be retracted. I await confirmation, but the sign was off the building at 68 LG Smith Blvd. I called the other day and got no answer. Too early to gloat, but I'm feeling pretty confident. If it is closed, however, that tempers my glee, because we heard really good things about it and it's always sad to see a good place close. I think back to the "would you eat downtown?" thread.

  9. #19
    Senior Member jpsphr's Avatar
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    Boca Catalina Beach Marriott properties Mangel Halto for Snorkeling
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    Gerald,
    Played 2 and it hit. Unfortunately, just used a $1 chip, but it let me play for a lot longer. My wife has finally been converted from slots to Roulette.

    Andrea, The first of your three best is hard to beat!

    Report for our last day at the Ocean Club:

    The best day yet. We met Kent, Stuart and a group at Club Arias at 9 for a snorkel trip. As I mentioned earlier, it was the highlight of the trip, by far. This was my second snorkel with he and Stuart and my wife's first. She was apprehensive, but by the end of the snorkel, she was raving about it. Kent couldn't have been more accommodating to her. He is very patient and delights in pointing out the various kinds of coral and fish. The current was strong today so he kept us inside the reef. It's hard to describe how beautiful it is, so a couple of snorkel photos are included below. BTW, we snorkeled this morning and ALREADY have the photos to share tonight.

    Between the snorkel and lunch, we drove down to Baby Beach, just to look around. They rent chairs there, as well as clamshell tents to ward off the sun. the chairs are $8 for the day and the tents $31. A little pricey IMO, especially compared with the $5 chairs at Arashi and Catalina.

    Lunch was at Zeerover's in Savaneta. Mahi, Cornbread and plantain. All delicious and inexpensive and as fresh as can be, since it's a fisherman's pier. The wind was strong today, so no bugs to bother you while dining. Almost everyone eating there today was local.

    We have eaten too well and too much since arriving, so we both wanted something a bit lighter and also less expensive for dinner tonight. We remembered Bingo (next to Linda's Pizza and Panenkoken) and opted for that. It was a great choice. We shared a salad and shrimp and pasta dish and paid $4.00 extra for the share. the bill was under $60 for the two of us with cocktails.

    By the time we got back to the Ocean Club, we didn't have the strength to leave the property, so Roulette was at the Stellaris. We had one great dealer and three who were less than friendly. (are they still called dealers if they are spinning the wheel?) Anyway, we got to play for about an hour and a half before the chips dwindled. By that point, there was nothing left to do to cap off a perfect day in paradise than grab a mango sorbet to share.

    Unfortunately, this trip package only included 6 nights at the OC, so tomorrow we're spending our last day at the Renaissance. We are looking forward to seeing Renaissance Island. We'll probably also hit the flea market to secure presents for those brave souls we left behind in the Rochester heat wave. It seems kind of unreal that it's 95 there and 90 here.

    Signing off for the night. Thanks for the kind words all. See you tomorrow.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Back to Aruba July 2012-p7060243.jpg   Back to Aruba July 2012-p7060252.jpg   Back to Aruba July 2012-p7060214.jpg  
    Last edited by jpsphr; 07-07-2012 at 09:09 AM.

  10. #20
    Senior Member DiviDiviFan's Avatar
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    Have really enjoyed your trip reports and I too am a Roulette Lover. I usually player #34 and I do believe the spinner is still called a dealer. I hope you enjoy your last day in beautiful Aruba, it is not even my vacation and I feel like it has flown by reading your reports each day! I will miss the daily reports and hope you and your wife have the best day today and a safe flight home

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