I just returned home from a trip to Aruba. This was my first trip to the island and I am positive there will be many more. You will see “One Happy Island” everywhere and that is so true.
Where did we stay?
We stayed at The Renaissance Aruba. The Renaissance has an adults only building( marina side) and a family building ( Ocean suites). There are not many adults only properties in Aruba so this was a great perk not having children running around the pool or halls. The Renaissance also has an all- inclusive option but we did not book that package.
Thoughts on the hotel:
The hotel looked like it has been updated in the recent years. You can tell it is a older property but it is well taken care of. The only downside is the room sizes. I cannot speak to all of the room sizes but we booked the junior suite and it felt very small. The toilet, sink and shower were all in a tiny space which wasn’t ideal. The room is really just a typical hotel room with no fluff. Thankfully we didn’t travel to Aruba to hang out in the room so it wasn’t a huge deal. The hotel is connected to a large mall with luxury brands, casino and restaurants. It is also walking distance to many great places to eat. The staff was amazing and I was impressed with the food. This has nothing to do with the quality of the hotel but there was definitely a older crowd. We were celebrating a 40th birthday and we were absolutely some of the youngest people at hotel. If you are a younger crowd looking for a hip and trendy resort…. this is probably not a fit for you.
The best thing about the resort or trip experience was the renaissance private island. It is INSANE! They have daily ferry’s that take you to the island. The island is not over crowded, lots of chairs, restaurant, bars, water activities. It also has flamingos roaming around… YES FLAMINGOS. It felt like heaven every day we were there. They also have over water cabana’s that can be rented. This was the best part of the trip. They welcomed you with your name in the sand, champagne, cooler, butler, floats and snorkeling gear. If you are going to the island you MUST book a Cabana as it was such a memorable experience. Now I am wondering how I can ever travel to another destination without over water cabanas!
Other good news! They host weddings on the PRIVATE ISLAND. If you are wanting a destination wedding you must consider this location.
A few favorite experiences that are a must have for all travelers:
Sea bob- This was so so cool. It cost $125 a person and was worth every penny.
Octopus Sunset Cruise– This was a very romantic and cool experience. Highly recommend!
Aruba almost felt like Destin, FL to me but in a Caribbean island and WAY better. They had a Harbor walk area that had TONS of restaurants, Hotels, Condos. If you were to bring your family it feels so safe walking around at night. Also, they take the American dollar everywhere which is very convenient. The water was the MOST beautiful I have seen. I have traveled to Jamaica, Mexico, DR, Bahamas to give you reference.
If I knew what I know now:
Make sure to apply sunscreen often even after lots of champagne. Seriously… set a reminder.
I would of packed some alcohol in my bag. Because this wasn’t an all -inclusive we went to the market to purchase alcohol and it was OVER PRICED (x4 what we would pay in the states). I actually had a few couples tell me they did this.
Stay 2 additional days because 5 wasn’t enough
How much can you expect to spend on a trip to Aruba-
I know everyone that is reading this is thinking about $$… its not a cheap trip. We had a great travel agent rate at the hotel and free flights( because of points) so we were lucky. I would say if you are traveling to Aruba and want to do it right you should expect to spend 5-6k for 2 adults with hotel, flights, food, taxis, etc. If you are interested in booking a trip I would love to send you some quotes!
I am so thankful for have another amazing trip with my husband.
Take the Trip,