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Thread: Very late story--11/15/21 thru 11/22/21!

  1. #1
    Member TravelNLesa's Avatar
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    Very late story--11/15/21 thru 11/22/21!

    My apologies for not posting this sooner but we're headed back to Aruba on 8/8/2022 and wanted to get this past trip out there!

    We own a 1 BR OV at the Marriott Aruba Ocean Club and took our IA nephew and his girlfriend with us on this trip. They had never been out of the US and were happy to sleep on the LR sofa bed, lol! They flew into FLL on the Thursday before our Monday departure. We live about 35 minutes northwest of that airport so picked them up and had a few days to do last minute shopping, mani/pedi's, ED cards and the Covid testing required at that time. We also had fun in our pool, visiting the local restaurants and just catching up!

    We flew American, on points, out of Miami. We used Alpha 1 Limo and our driver was wonderful. We would use her again. We don't like MIA but use when we need to. Seems like it is always a madhouse, LOL! We got to Aruba on time and through all hoops with no problems. Rented a car with AVIS because our first choice, Tropic, and the other recommended companies were fully booked. Car was so sketchy/beat up our nephew took a video of every piece of that car. It did get us where we wanted to go!

    Check in at the OC was smooth and we had a top floor unit in the section parallel to the beach. We've been in that section before but never, ever been assigned to the top floor on the property! It was a pleasant surprise after missing our Aruba trip for several years. The "kids" said the sofa bed was comfy and they weren't limping or complaining of back problems or falling asleep on the beach either! We managed the 1 bath just fine but took some planning!
    --
    So before I go into brief details about what we did and where we shopped/ate, our nephew planned to proprose to his girlfriend during the trip. He was very afraid that TSA would mess up the suprise proposal by inspecting his carry on luggage and dig out the engagement ring that he had hidden in a sock! Wasn't a problem leaving IA and I ended up with the engagement ring in my carry on for the Aruba leg of the trip AND kept it with my wedding/engagement rings (in a drawstring bag) in our safe once we got to the OC. He proposed on Tuesday, 11/16, in front of the docks between Moomba and the Surf Club at sunset. She said yes and they're getting married in September of this year. We're so very happy for them! We thought they might like a little privacy that night so booked a Surf Club studio for them. They liked the studio but said that they preferred the OC decor--such a personal choice and my husband and I don't really care as long as the unit is functional and clean!

    Tours and such: We've been going to Aruba for over 20 years and don't tour so much. The 4 of us did the Tranquillo day trip on Tuesday and fun was had by all! The youngun's did an ATV trip to the Natural Pool and loved it! I do not remember who they used but the OC concierge hooked them up. We ususally drive around to Baby Beach, Arikok, the lighthouse, etc. in our rental car but my husband and I didn't even do that this trip! It was huge sand gravity for us but we did visit Arashi and Eagle Beaches a few times with and without the nephew and his fiance.

    Restaurants/Food: On engagement night, the kids dined at Atardi and enjoyed the food and ambiance. We went to The Chophouse at Manchebo and enjoyed our alone time and food but there was a big, noisy group seated close by that we didn't care for. We also ate at Hadicurri, Champions, Twist of Flavors, Azurro, LaVista, Nos Clubhous, Fisherman's Hut, Linda's Pancakes, Iquana Cantina at Paseo Herencia. All were mostly very good. Twist of Flavors special mashed potatoes were a bit too spicy for me. Visited LaVista for breakfast and brunch and brunch was crazy busy so service was a bit off. Fisherman's Hut was very nice and the food and service was outstanding. I ordered tres leche cake and they told me they were already out but they found me a slice, lol! I guess a worker wasn't taking a treat home with them because it was delicious!

    Gambling: We play table blackjack and video poker. Odds on VP weren't in our favor so we stuck with BJ and did a little better than break even for the week and we never ask for more than that! We also prefer a $10 or $15 BJ table with 3:2 odds and they can be hard to come by. We played mostly at Alahamra (I think that is the name--at Eagle Beach?) and at Xanadu at the HI. Xanadu only had a few tables in the former poker room but it was very laid back and kinda nice! The sports bar is behind this area and was doing a soft opening. They were happy my husband wanted to check the scores on college FB and NFL games when we were there. Nephew only played roulette when we arrived but we took a night out in the unit to teach them how to play blackjack. That was a really fun night for us and we continued into the wee hours!

    The OC: I've already mentioned our top floor assignment. I'm an early riser so have no problem heading to the towel hut, Yeti filled with coffee in hand, to get a palapa. We're good with a middle of the pack spot but I did get a first row, for the first time ever, one day. Now I know why--it was all the way over by the Stellaris and the OC's wifi doesn't reach, LOL! On our first morning on the beach, we had a row 2 palapa and there was a large group in front of us--like 8 adults with a bunch of small children/toddlers/babies. They were encroaching upon our area but the chair guy handled it for us. All but 2 of those folks had Surf Club towels and while I know family/friends groups want to be together, it takes away from our R&R a bit. We like the new decor at the OC. The pool deck resurfacing was going on but wasn't an issue for us as we like being on the beach more.

    Our return home went well. We were at our gate and America notified us that our flight was delayed, then cancelled. We looked up the flights on Flight Aware app and our plane was still in route to Aruba? Asked and gate agents didn't know what we were talking about, lol! Our driver picked us up at MIA and had us home with no issues. Took nephew and his now fiance to FLL the next day and they were home that night with no issues.

    Husband and I are returning to Aruba, on our own, in 2 weeks! We always enjoy sharing Aruba with friends and family but are really looking forward to this just us trip! Will try to post a more timely trip report when we return home.
    Last edited by TravelNLesa; 07-23-2022 at 05:45 PM.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Pegmeister's Avatar
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    Better late than never as they say. Enjoyed your report and glad the proposal went well. Enjoy your upcoming trip!!

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  3. #3
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    thanks for sharing your stay with us!!

    what a wonderful proposal!!!

    getting back to your return flight to Miami...was it cancelled or was the text in error?

    we had a situation with our returning flight on July 2 to Miami.
    I got an email saying it was cancelled as we sat at gate 2 at the AUA airport.

    then I checked the flight departure/arrival board and it said gate change to gate 8

    AA was kind of a mess for us, but we made it home and we really only fly AA if the price is good.


    again, thank you for sharing and happy travels in August
    THINK.. is it Thoughtful? Helpful? Inspirational? Necessary? Kind? sidtm
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  4. #4
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    I enjoyed your report and am looking forward to reading your next report in a couple of weeks! Safe and stress free travels!
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  5. #5
    Senior Member cpjones's Avatar
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    Never too late for a trip report.... thanks for sharing.
    A wise man never knows all......only fools know everything!
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  6. #6
    Senior Member ArubaAce's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing and I look forward to your next trip.
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    Thank you for your trip report! Sounds like added excitement with the engagement!
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Aruba4ever's Avatar
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    Thanks for wrapping up last trip before starting one in 2 weeks! Sounds like you and the family had a great time. No place better to be proposed to than on a beach in Aruba- nice!
    Trip 38 booked for Feb! Cant wait.







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  9. #9
    Member TravelNLesa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrea J. View Post
    thanks for sharing your stay with us!!

    what a wonderful proposal!!!

    getting back to your return flight to Miami...was it cancelled or was the text in error?

    we had a situation with our returning flight on July 2 to Miami.
    I got an email saying it was cancelled as we sat at gate 2 at the AUA airport.

    then I checked the flight departure/arrival board and it said gate change to gate 8

    AA was kind of a mess for us, but we made it home and we really only fly AA if the price is good.


    again, thank you for sharing and happy travels in August
    Andrea, it was an error! American isn't our favorite either BUT I'm not sure we have a current favorite at this moment in time. We flew Delta from BHM to PBI last week and it was a fiasco! We were stuck in a hot plane on the tarmac at BHM for almost 3 hours because of thunderstorms. Flight from ATL was delayed for 3.5 hours for crew issues created by bad weather. Fingers crossed our Aruba flights are much better!
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  10. #10
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    Great report...thanks! Wishing you safe and hassle free travels for your return to the island! Congrats to nephew!
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