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Thread: Tell us of your first Aruba visit

  1. #1
    Aruba since 1979
    Andrea J.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Tell us of your first Aruba visit

    Please, tell us of your first Aruba visit.
    Have you visited more than once? why? what was so special about that first visit? how long ago was that first visit?

    Our first visit was in January 1979 or 80.
    We were on our way to a SCUBA trip to Bonaire and had a pre Bonaire and post Bonaire few nights on Aruba.
    Loved it! (obviously )
    The beaches = magnificent and the lovely hospitable residents made us feel welcomed and appreciated.
    Few years passed and then we stopped in Aruba a few times on cruises........then by 1998 or so became land based Aruba vacation addicts.

    Last edited by Andrea J.; 08-21-2013 at 11:03 AM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member AndyM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Paradise Beach Villas Eagle Beach
    It was the year 2000 and I had been dating a woman for about a year and we planned a week in Aruba for our first "real" vacation together. We bought a package at the Manchebo and flew down on a charter.

    The beach at Manchebo is the best on the island and we were surprised to learn it is topless. I don't have to tell you the weather and water were perfect.

    We ate a meal at the French Steakhouse buying some full course special with a coupon my girlfriend had found. We were not impressed with the meal. Another night we walked to Le Dome and enjoyed an excellent dinner. We gambled at Alahambra and did a dinner and show at the Royal Cabana theater behind Paradise Beach Villas. The show as excellent. A daytime cruise with snorkeling on the Jolly Pirate was another activity I recall.

    We had brought a bottle of Dom with us and sat in the gazebo and watched the sunset one night drinking champagne to toast that our relationship was moving to the next level.

    Near the end of the week, some guy approached us on the beach offering a cornucopia of cheesy gifts if we would listen to a timeshare presentation the next day. We showed up at Paradise Beach Villas, still under construction for Phase 2, and had a breakfast and tour of the facilities. We bought our first timeshare week that day and still have it. We later added a second week so now our vacations are two weeks long in the thick of winter.

    She's not my girlfriend anymore. She's my wife now.

    I don't regret one bit of it.

    I've gone back and edited this post three times as I remember another thing to add. I think I'll stop now.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Chrisvec's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Eagle Beach to relax / Malmok, Boca Catalina & Arashi for snorkeling / Carte Blanche, Zeerovers, Sopranos Piano Bar, Kuku Kanuku & The Pata Pata Bar / The weekend flee market.
    About 8 years ago we were booked to go to Antigua. (Traded our week in Orlando and that came up so we took it.) There was a robbery & killing at the resort next to where we were slated to stay. Can't even remember the name of it. We got spooked, call Interval and they happen to have a unit at the Surf. We went, and the rest is history! Been back every year since, one year we went twice. I have to say it was everything about it. The people, beach, food, the pace, not to mention feeling safe. The island is small enough that we could navigate it and still feel like we were being adventurous. It is also a pleasure to be meeting such nice people on this forum. Cheers!
    9th trip to Aruba in

  4. #4
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Any Aruba beach...
    With which husband?

    Trip #1, husband #1, was a one day stop while aboard a Royal Caribbean cruise ship while on our honeymoon.
    Rainy season, the week of December 10, it POURED most of the day and when it wasn't raining it was cloudy. Reminded me a lot of Florida and Grand Cayman. Really felt NO NEED to ever return.

    Trip #2, boy friend whose parents had given us a week through a timeshare exchange into Playa Linda. Spent the first couple of days before that week at Caribbean Palm Village. This trip in June, the weather cooperated, and with MUCH better company, grew to love Aruba- her weather, her beaches and restaurants.

    Trip #3, boy friend was now husband and we were honeymooning in Aruba after marrying on Paradise Island in the Bahamas. LOL, we are so old those were the days before non-Arubans could marry on the island. 16+ years and 20+ visits later, the Flame and the Steamboat Restaurants are no longer around, but we have found some new gems. Except for my first unfortunate visit to the island, the weather has never disappointed

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Our first visit was our honeymoon, May 1976. Stayed at the Americana which is now the Occidental. Then we did not return for 25 years. What a difference.!!!! We have returned for the last eight years straight and will continue to vacation in Aruba every year.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Pegmeister's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Any beach!!
    After 25 years of refusing to fly, DH's friends talked him into flying to VEGAS!! So, my reward was for us to fly anywhere I wanted for a vacation and I chose Aruba. We stayed at the Divi AI and once I saw that beach I knew I found heaven. That was in 2009 and we've gone back twice a year since, some years 3 times. We've always stayed at the Divi but this upcoming trip we're giving the Radisoon a try. We've made many friends and have always had a relaxing wonderful vacation.

  7. #7
    Senior Member SuperBunches's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    I love the beach (who doesn't?), anywhere that I can snorkel, The Donkey Sanctuary (much to the dismay of my daughter), the lighthouse.
    Our first visit was for our Honeymoon 7 years ago. We had already purchased at the Marriott Surf Club after upgrading prior to settlement from the Seaview Resort in New Jersey (what were we thinking...New Jersey??? We live 2 hours from New Jersey, we can visit there anytime). We decided to visit Aruba and stay at the Stellaris, just to see if we liked Aruba. We didn't like Aruba, we LOVED Aruba. We went back three months later and we have back every year since. In hind site, had we visited Aruba first, we may not have purchased at the SC due to its immense size and over-crowded beach. Surf Club is what we have, though and we love it. Our unit is very spacious (three bedrooms) and always immaculately clean and well-maintained. We have never had a desire to trade our Marriott TS for another locale.

    We love the people, the safety, the beaches, the food and the Balashi! We visit many of the same restaurants year after year, but always try some new ones. I love this forum and reading the information and stories that all of you contribute.

    My dream is to be able to spend two weeks in Aruba; one week on Eagle Beach and the other at the SC. That probably won't happen for many years because my husband will not take two consecutive weeks of vacation.

    I should probably stop reading this forum and start packing...only five days to go!

  8. #8
    Senior Member cpjones's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Eagle Beach, Glitz Casino, Manchebo Beach Resort
    First visit was in 2003 at the Hyatt Regency. Having been married in 2001 we decided that a Caribbean beach vacation was a great choice to get away. I extensively researched all Caribbean islands over the winter of 02/03 with the criteria being great beaches, good food and a couple of casinos (my vice... not DW's). Aruba kept coming up and we made the plans based on a recommendation of a co-worker who had multiple trips! The first visit was a toss up between the Radisson and the Hyatt. We chose the Hyatt for our first 3 visits before we switched to the Radisson which we now consider home. We loved Palm Beach from the minute we arrived and with the exception of one year, keep going back every summer for a week. Really wish we could do more time, but too many other things eat our time.

    Aruba exceeded our expectations for the beaches and restaurants, but the thing we loved best during our first visit was the relaxing atmosphere of the Hyatt lobby, regardless of the time of day or night. It was always a great place to relax and people watch!

  9. #9
    Member MAZOO's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Palm Beach, Eagle Beach, Downtown,Casinos,Lighthouse, "other Side"
    I think the first time we were there was in 1994. It was the last summer the whole family would be together before our son went off to college the next year. We stayed at La Cabana in the back time shares (now Tropicana?) because they lost our reservation. Hey but we made the best of it. I remember going to the Buccaneer for our big dinner that week. We liked it so much that we extended our stay for another three days. Back then it only cost $25 a person to change your flight. I miss ArubaAir. Then in 2000 we went again with about 20 other Land Surveyors from NJ and stayed at the Allegro (now Occidental). We still talk about me sliding off the swim up bar stool at 11 in the morning –to many Green Iguana’s. And since 2002 been at the Radisson every year. Can’t make this year, I’ll relate under separate post. Maybe we’ll have to go twice next year.
    Last edited by MAZOO; 08-19-2013 at 09:51 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member arubacandy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    First time, Jan 2005, we were invited down to my cousins timeshare at Casa Del Mar. Loved it ! Great weather, people and food. Due to a large snow storm in NY, our flights were cancelled for 2 days..Bonus time in Aruba !! Months later we purchased a week at CDM! Next year another week and the following year another week !! 3 glorious weeks in Aruba !! And now I'm counting the weeks till October !! And I owe it all to my Cousin ...Thanks !!!

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