Wait tracy your liver is not done yet! A trip to Aruba is not complete without stopping bye the One Happy Island Bar at the airport. I heard they make great bloody marys from scratch but I stick to the screwdrivers and Panninis to go. Safe Travels!
Great reports, Tracey. You write like a veteran now!! Have a safe flight home.
p.s. Pls let us know where you sat at Amuse... We were blinded by the SUVs pulling into PL when we were there.
Remember we always eat earlier than you we sat right against the glass near the side closest to the street. I had my back to the entrance of the hotel and Jon didn't notice anything. I think it's because it wasn't all the way dark yet though so we wouldn't have had headlight issues. When the sprinkles started we moved to the bar for dessert and there your back is to the driveway.
Well as tradition dictates we are waiting to leave for the airport r and talking about our best and least favorite list...can't day best and worst because nothing could be the "worst" for us as long as we are in Aruba!
Tracey: best was Bugaloe, least favorite would be bagel from Dunkin Donuts
Jon: best was a tie Scotts Brats burrito and his roast beef bagel from Dushi bagels, least favorite was when I made him eat in the room...lol.
Tracey: best Banana grouper from Dushi bagels
Jon: best was ceviche from the Azzuro Beach servers
Least favorite for both was Rennaissance island, but that gets an * because of the temporary set up since the fire.
Tango was our favorite this time
West Deck was our least favorite, it wasn't bad though.
Carlitos chicken wings were actually the worst I've had in Aruba.
Best dessert, one of the few sweets we tried was Amuse Bistro glazed chocolate brownie with red wine ice cream
Favorite happy hour:
Under our palapa making our own drinks
Tracey: Not snorkeling more around the island
Jon: not making the most of our nights and going to bed early too often
Tracey: rain changing our football watching plans, and lack of live music at Hard Rock
Jon: Rennaissance island and the whole downtown area
Tracey: Meeting fAmily and friends from their cruise
Jon: lots of beach time
Jon: Playa Linda beach bar
We arrived at 11:55 for a 3pm flight. We had a few people in front of us at the American Airlines counter. After a quick wait there, we never stopped walking. We had no lines anywhere! Not one! We walked right thru every immigration, security, bag check, customs, you name it, no line. Lots of lanes open in Aruba security area and lots of workers directing travelers where to go. We made it from taxi to gate in around 35-40 minutes tops.
I wanted to look around the shops before US Customs, but Jon likes to just get through everything first so I was over ruled.
One happy bar is completely packed and honestly neither of us wants a drink at this point. The Old Dutch bar is pretty open. We found an empty gate area and as just relaxing and waiting.
I'm like your husband that I like to go through both securities and not stop. However, on this trip it was empty going thru the Aruba side which I completed in like 10 minutes so I stopped at the duty free to get my big ball of Gouda Cheese (which I'm still enjoying) and 2 bottles of bourbon which were on sale. Yes one happy bar does get crowded. I arrived at 11:30am at one happy bar and it was empty but by 1pm it was packed. Safe travels and thanks for sharing your trip with us.
Our last morning is always a little sad. We slept in later than most mornings and packed up most of our things. The beach bag I purchased ended up being perfect as a carry-on tote. It held our warmer clothes so we could put them on during our layover in Miami. After packing we walked down for a pier breakfast at Bugaloe. I hope they do well with this so they keep it going. We came back and found some shade on the beach to enjoy for as long as we could. We ended up back in the room for the final pack up and sitting on the balcony reflecting on our trip.
Playa Linda allows you to check out on Saturday which is nice since their major turn over day is Sunday. This makes for no lines and you just drop your keys and towel card in a box on the counter.
Getting a taxi was no problem this time, they were lined up outside and ready to go. As I mentioned, we breezed through the airport. The flight to Miami was uneventful. Our layover was long, but we just sat and watched football and found some dinner so it wasn't too bad. We boarded the plane only to sit at the gate for an hour and a half. There was some issue with an oxygen tank needing replaced and not having the right brackets. We never left the gate, I wish they hadn't boarded the plane. That's a long time to just sit there. I was so happy that we decided to book first class. I can't imagine being crammed in a seat for that long. I would have gone crazy. It was close to 10 when we finally took off. The 4 guys in the rows behind us enjoyed their share of wine and whiskey during the wait. They didn't know each other before the flight but they all got to know each other well during their 2 hour conversation that got louder and louder as time went on. I was so tired and annoyed. Headphones weren't even blocking them out. Finally we escaped the confines of the plane and were off to our taxi. We left PL at 1130am and arrived home around 1:30am. It was a long day, but definitely worth it!!!! And we took an extra day off so it wasn't too bad.
Thanks for coming along on our trip. Over the next few days I will write some restaurant specific reviews and my thoughts on the Playa Linda, as well as some photos.