CindyO and I are sitting in the crying room waiting for a 1:07 departure from Aruba. There was just a huge downpour, not certain whether it Aruba crying to see us leaving, or our own melancholy feelings making it rain.
While on the plane home (non-stop to Boston, Jet Blue), I'm going to put together my own thoughts on the trip and general observations of what we've experienced just to supplement CindyO's fine daily efforts. Look for it late tonight or tomorrow.
On a brighter note, we next land in Aruba in 82 days and 4 hours. I'll be planning that trip on the way home as well.
take your time on the report rob, do not be sorry.
we all know what it is like to get home and get caught up on home stuff and work stuff.
re: the luggage.
we had an issue with SOAKED luggage on the return 2x, once from aruba, and once from manchester.
both times, i filled out a form with ATA/SWA, and we were given flight credits as a sorry for the inconvenience.
our stuff was sopping wet as if it had been dunked in a pool and then came down the conveyor.
Well, trip number 18 (I think) is over and, once again, Aruba proved to be the destination of choice. Having spent over a half year of total time in Aruba, close to 200 nights, we’ve only had one day of bad weather and that was just a half day of rain a few years ago. Life is rough! Mt wife, CindyO, posted daily while we were there but I was too busy enjoying my trip so I refrained from any extensive posting until now. Even at that, I’ll be somewhat brief. Surf Club and Renaissance We spent nine nights at the Surf Club (actually, 8 nights of occupancy with a vacant night) and we took a “vacation from vacation” to sleep at one of the refurbished suites at Renaissance and enjoy consecutive days at the Renaissance Private Island. We’ve gone to Renaissance since 1997, but the Surf Club, where we’ve now gone three times, is growing on us. Love them both now. The Renaissance Island is unsurpassed for relaxation, peace and quiet; I think it’s the best place in Aruba. However, it is a bit of work to get out there and the more rigid enforcement of the “no food, no drink” policy, while understandable, does taint it a bit. We love the island staff, they’re the best, and the recently re-done restaurant on the island is really nice and reasonable. The re-furbished suites are very nice and bright. The colors and lighting and the new bathrooms are all plusses. They need to do something (not sure what) about the showers though, it is really impossible to use them without spraying some water on the floor. Over the years we have developed some wonderful friendships at Renaissance and, because of its size, I doubt we could ever develop the same relationships at the Surf. However, the Surf Club staff is very Aruban….meaning very friendly. The Surf Club Beach is congested and busy, but after getting used to it we find it quite relaxing as well. You reserve your space and you’re all set. We like to reserve the palaypas in advance, paying the $10 or $15 dollars versus waiting in line, and also enjoy the option of eating and drinking our own provisions on the beach or, sometimes, back in the room a short walk away. The Surf Club rooms? Well, we’re spoiled, they’re so very nice. We must be getting old, never cared too much about the room before as we’re rarely in it; but, we love to go to the gym and then have breakfast in the room. Getting Around We used to rent a car for a day or two, but no longer have a need to “sightsee” so don’t bother. On top of that, there’s Bully, our good friend and “family” in Aruba. We e-mailed Bully in advance and reserved airport pick-up and drop-off as well as 6 or 7 round trips for dining. He’s just such a nice guy and we’re lucky to have gotten to know him so well. Friends In addition to Bully and our friends at Renaissance, we were able to meet with and watch some football with Scott and Leslie from Scott’s Brats, and with Tom, as in “Tom and Stanley”. We also visited John G. (AKA Aquaman) and his lovely wife Bobbie. Dining We had our daughters with us on 16 of our 17 previous trips. Being alone this time we decided to try a lot of new places.
Places we went to for the first time and will definitely return to are: Anna Maria’s (two reservations made for next trip)…great service, pricing, setting and food Tierra del Sol (reserved for next trip)…gorgeous view, nice, reasonable menu Matthew’s…great food and good pricing (not next trip, but will be back; next trip Ricardo's next door for our first time) West Deck…nice casual evening on the water (might go next trip)
Places we went to that were OK but no need to rush back (but might go back eventually): Windows on Aruba (first time visit)…great views, food “OK”. Papiemento (last visit in 2001)…”OK”, nothing really outstanding except setting was nice
Places we went to before: Wacky Wahoo.…great food and value Hooters….the new place is very nice, food is same old, same old Scotts Brats….love this place….great friends, food and value. A nice break on the beach. Madame Janette’s…had gone pretty much every previous trip, I think we need to take a few years off as it seems to have lost its magic with us and is about 20% more expensive than similar menus, probably due to its long standing reputation.
That’s it for now! Aruba…we’ll see you again in 79 days.
I totally understand about your comment re: Renaissance "food/beverage" policy. We have been nabbed a few times for bringing iced water and iced coffee.
I understand their reasoning, but.............when the restaurant/bar does not open til 10 or later..........why not allow folks to at least have their own coffee and or bottle of water? We get out there at 8:30 and it is nice to have coffee on the beach.