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Thread: Holiday Inn Sunspree

  1. #21
    Member Johnnyecks's Avatar
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    Chadd,

    My wife and I have stayed at the HI twice in our 3 trips to Aruba. We fully enjoy it. Yes, it is not the most luxurious of the hotel choices, but for what you are paying it is worth it. We always choose the AI option for the booze, if for nothing else, because the restaurants aren't all that impressive. The breakfast is buffet, so your wife may not have a problem being vegetarian. I don't remember there being that many options, but they do have oatmeal and cereal there. I'm not too sure about the restaurants however. There is an Italian one that serves fish and pasta. I remember that restaurant having an appetizer of a portobello mushroom with Gorgonzola cheese on top that was really good. My wife does not like mushrooms, but she enjoyed that.

    As far as a fridge, I don't exactly remember if there is one in the room? I want to say that there is because when we travel we always stay at a HI (we're long-time priority club members), and all the rooms we've stayed in have had fridges in them.

    There isn't much noise around the HI at all. At night they have outdoor entertainment until about 9 or 10pm, but we've never found it to be intrusive should we decide to stay in the room.

    We have fully enjoyed the HI. The beach is beautiful there, although it can get a little crowded during the day and I do recommend getting a palapa hut early in the AM (6 or so), yes there will be a wait, because they get taken up fairly quickly. I do find that the same people get the same huts during our stays, so that becomes nice as you get to talking to these people during the stay.

    The bartenders outside at the grill/bar have always been friendly, we always take care of them at the beginning of our stay, yes even when we're AI, with a $50 and they take care of us.

    The AI option does not include top shelf liquor or imported beer. But, as I said above, we took car of the bartender at the beginning of our trip, and he pretty much let us have whatever we wanted.

    We did the same for the bartender in the lounge next to the casino, for we spent just about every night in there until it closed (around 2am).

    Look for the nights that "Giovanni" will be entertaining, he was a hoot. He's a DJ, but really gets the crowd going and has a ball with us.

    I don't have many complaints about the HI in at all. The only thing that I am slightly disappointed in are the food options. Like I said before, the restaurants are OK, but we go out for dinner while in Aruba anyhow because there are some absolutely fantastic places to eat outside the HI. We only use the AI option for the booze and the grill during the day. Last year one of the elevators was being repaired so it took a little wait for it to arrive, but we usually went to the elevators to the left as you walk in the lobby (or to the right if coming from the beach), as those aren't centrally located and therefore used less often. And the "hot tub" isn't hot ever, it's just as warm as the pool but with jets. I am a lover of hot tubs, even in 90 degree weather, they just feel good on my muscles so I was disappointed in that. And the food, if not on the AI option, is not worth what they charge. I remember the first year we went, while waiting for our room to be ready, we had lunch at the covered grill on the right of the property. My wife and I each had a cheese-steak sandwich, an appetizer to share, 2 rum runners each and the bill was $75 with tip. It was great being on the AI, cause you got to see your bill with each order. Some people may find that kinda annoying, to have to sign a receipt with each drink you get, but after the first few times you get used to it. Plus it's fun to keep a running tab in your head.

    The casino, while not as busy as the others, has been a fun distraction. We have even won a nice bit of money in there on several occasions, enough for dinner for a few nights.

    The shopping inside is nice, the jewelry store has some really good deals, much to my chagrin and to my wife's enjoyment.

    They have a water sports hut right on the property where you can get your floatie (for $5 a day), or set up a raft ride on a boat. And a few feet down from there there is another hut where you can get snorkeling equipment (everything, right down to the flippies) for free for the day.

    So, the HI has been good to us and we will continue to go there. This year we are renting a house (we are going with another couple and a friend of ours), but we will use their beach and pool during the week a few times (the house has it's own pool)

    The past two times we stayed there the price was $225 a person per day on the AI option, but that was in November. We were told that they were raising their prices, and may even be getting rid of the AI during that time of the year. Checking on the price for our trip coming up (Feb. 19th - 28th) it was $425 a person.
    As much as we like the HI, for that price we'll go somewhere else. But for $225-275 / night AI, I feel as though it's worth it. If you're willing to go out to eat at night. Which you should do regardless or else you're missing one of Arubas best assets. Food.


    Hope this has helped!

  2. #22
    Senior Member luvsun's Avatar
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    there is a refrigerator in the rooms.
    there really isn't that much noise around the high rise area. And there isn't
    any that we've ever come across at the Holiday Inn.
    as far as food for your wife?? hummm don't really remember seeing a lot of
    veggie dishes...but i also wasn't looking for them? i'm guessing there isn't very much
    but only because the food is just so so..

  3. #23
    Senior Member Chadd's Avatar
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    I appreciate the help. She likes Italian food and little else, makes it a little hard at times.

  4. #24
    Senior Member luvsun's Avatar
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    they have one restaurant that is Italian food. but, its not always open! they switch off between two, the buffet is always open. she could possibly find something there.

  5. #25
    Senior Member Windy's Avatar
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    Haven't decided yet if we're taking the laptop with us (nice to email family) for our stay at the HI -- is there free wireless internet?

  6. #26
    Senior Member Liz - Aruba Lover's Avatar
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    No free wi-fi. Internet service is with Setar. Cost is $10 day, $35 week, $70. month. There is a computer room by the Aruba Tower on the ground floor. I don't know how much they charge.

  7. #27
    Senior Member luvsun's Avatar
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    If you buy a card get it at the airport and not by the high rise...less of a line!

  8. #28
    Senior Member Liz - Aruba Lover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luvsun View Post
    If you buy a card get it at the airport and not by the high rise...less of a line!
    You can get the internet card at the gift store in the Holiday Inn. Or just go into "connet to" in your computer and pay online. Be aware that depending where your room is at the Holiday Inn depends how good the connection. If you don't get a good room connection, there is a gazebo with tables by the front desk that has the best connection.

  9. #29
    Senior Member Windy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by purpleangel View Post
    If you hit the beach in the morning, you can go to the towel hut on the beach to reserve a palapa. The line starts forming very early, as the towel hut opens around 7 a.m.
    I wonder if we go to the beach around 2 or 3 if there might be an empty palapa?

  10. #30
    Senior Member Windy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liz - Aruba Lover View Post
    You can get the internet card at the gift store in the Holiday Inn. Or just go into "connet to" in your computer and pay online. Be aware that depending where your room is at the Holiday Inn depends how good the connection. If you don't get a good room connection, there is a gazebo with tables by the front desk that has the best connection.
    Thanks Liz! Only thinking of taking the computer this time because we'll be there for 2 weeks. Since we'd just be checking in with family and not using it for "business" maybe we should go to an internet cafe now and then? (I'm assuming they exist!)
    With all this snow on the ground and our Cape Cod wind, I can't wait to get there!!! :-)
    Last edited by Windy; 02-12-2010 at 12:52 PM.

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