Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino
10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Best Vacation in Years
"We had heard about Aruba as a great vacation destination for years. Ourselves and two other families chose the Marriott Resort and Stellaris Casino as the place to celebrate high school graduation for our three boys, as well as two of us celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. We were there in mid-July and even though this is supposed to be "off-season", the hotel was at 90% occupancy. Aruba is becoming popular year round. Temperatures were great...high 80's and low 90's. The hotel is A+. Clean rooms, friendly staff and excellent service. EVERYONE on the island was very friendly. Before the trip we heard that the food was very expensive. Local restaurants that are not to be missed include El Gaucho for great Argentinian steaks, Papiamento, for romantic cuisine and seafood/steaks you can cook tableside, Solamare for reasonably priced Italian food, and Nos Canucus or Que' Pasa for local flavor. We found that you could spend as much or as little as you want to spend. For breakfast, we usually went down to the lobby at the hotel and got fantastic fresh bakery (muffins, sticky buns, pecan rolls, apple turnovers, etc). All the bakery was made fresh at the hotel and it flat out delicious. And....it wasn't expensive either. We are all trying to figure out when we'll return to Aruba AND to the Marriott Resort and Stellaris Casino. It was our best vacation in years....don't hesitate....GO!!!!!!!! Once you visit Aruba, if you live in the Northern USA, you'll be asking yourself the same question we've been asking since we returned....Why do we live where it snows???"
- Travel date: 3rd August 2004
"Me and my family spent one week there, and we were very disappointed. We had been the week before on Radisson, and it was way better. Room: Large, comfortable, the best part of the hotel, but the TV is small and far from the bed. We had a huge balcony, island view. Staff: Bad. Very different from the staff on Radisson. Beach: Anyone who wanted a hut should wake-up early and stay in a line for half an hour. No way! The breakfast was awful, we always had to wait at least 5 minutes to be seated. The fitness center is great. We had a very unpleasant week. Stay away from Marriott!"
- Travel date: 31st July 2004
Lovely place , great staff
"First I wanted to thank folks for adding to these reviews - it always helps us plan our trips. We returned recently (Aug 8-14, 2004) from a lovely stay at the Marriott in Aruba and just wanted to echo the mostly very positive reviews here. The place was lovely, the rooms, large, clean, and pleasant, the food - well, the breakfast was what we had most experience with because our summer special included it, was excellent -- opulent buffet that was continually refreshed right until it ended at 11 AM. (The menu said it was about $17.00 if not included in a package) But they had other breakfasts from the menu which were more modest. We also ate dinner in the same place several times and it was fine. The Italian restaurant looked lovely, too. Beach was pleasant, clean and, as many have said, you felt safe. We swam early and late -- so did not get into any hassles with palapas (some could be reserved - some were first come)- but the hard working beach staff were always there to help if you wanted it. As a mid age couple (who have visited many Caribbean islands) we were not into all the extreme water sports but there were plenty. Children and young people seemed to all be enjoying themsleves with their elders. As others have said - just relax - if you have an attitude others will too. WE walked thru the Casino and that's fine for diversion but not our thing. We took the 4.5 hr tour of the island in a comfortable air conditioned bus with a great driver/guide that included many stops (except the Aloe place) and a swim at Baby Beach and that was well done and arranged easily by a very helpful staff member of Palm Tours in the lobby. It was just a perfect overview -- the folks in the open jeeps etc looked pretty blown around. Ironically while an oil refinery looms over the baby beach in the backgound -- the water actually seemed a bit clearer than that near the hotel ! But our early am and sunset swims each evening at the hotel beach were lovely non the less. Two incidents highlight how helpful the staff were- my husband jogs and one day he set off down the beach and walkways that run south as I waived from the balcony. I sat down to enjoy the view and relax and did not notice when he returned. He knocked and knocked at the door and got no answer (he did not have his key knowing I would be there). The patio, I should note, has a very good glass door (no sleezy screen slider) which made it impossible for me to hear his knocking or phoning. He alerted hotel security - thinking perhaps I had passed out/heart attack - who knows!! and they came came VERY quickly to let him in -- and they were as concerned as he was!!. Much to everyone's relief I was alive and well and surprised/embarrassed to have caused such a stir. The other example was when we asked to be shifted from our first room. It was fine really - nice view toward the lighthouse and the kite surfing area but there was a roof just below the patio that was undergoing major re surfacing and made it a bit unpleasant to sit on the patio. The front desk staff worked with us on the phone and shifted us for our last 4 nites to the other side of the complex -- identical room - just so much more pleasant to sit outside. (From elevator conversation we gathered others had done the same and were accommodated when possible) Jan or Feb this might not be the case but in July it was appreciated. (BTW -The famed wind was not as strong as many say - but again that may be a summer thing.) The Arubans are wonderful people (diversity really works) and so hard working. We felt guilty when the same friendly wait staff served us dinner (we ate very late each evening) and then were also on hand to serve us breakfast. Even if just a buffet - they constantly checked if we needed water, new plates etc and truly earned a good tip The folks who make up the rooms were so attentive and a modest tip - 3-4 dolars assured us an evening turn down - more fresh towels and always a friendly papiamento lesson. We are evening people and altho the pool was technically closed at 7 PM-- no one seemed to mind if we quietly enjoyed a later evening swim. Again, security folk were always unobtrusively but helpfully on hand when we walked late on the beach- or jumped in the ocean at 2 AM (No sun burn worries then.) The 24 hr a day lobby bar was always there for goodies -- coffee, sandwiches, fruit, cookies ice cream etc. The gym and stores and even a sports bar throughout the complex were handy.The outside dining on the beach for dinner looked lovely but we were always swimming at normal dinner times. There were lots of different kinds of tours etc but we were content to relax at or near the hotel. One minor note - as you walked from the lobby area toward the beach towel pick up area there was a slight smell - but since the two restaurants were near there and it IS warm in Aruba I can imagine it is hard to control that. My husband said once or twice he noticed it when in the ocean, too. Our next to last day - lobby staff confirmed our outgoing flight for us and our bus (Palm) to airport was right on time. The airport was a little confusing but after several different lines and re gathering of bags etc we realized we had gone thru US customs as well, so on our return to US all we had to do was collect our bags and leave. Aruba is a small place with great people who are making great efforts to make their arid island with lovely beaches a lovely restful spot for others. I wish the Marriott could stay smaller - when all those Marriott time shares are full - the beach will be crowded but somehow I think the people will make it all work. Next time we will venture out - maybe with a car and try some of the really nice restaurants that were described in a great island publication called Island Temptations-- Brises Del Mar, Marina Pirata, Gasparito's, and Driftwood and the Buccaneer - were featured in the Summer 2004 edition all sounded really great. Be as polite and kind as the Arubans when you are there and you will be sure to enjoy your stay."
- Travel date: 30th July 2004
2nd trip to Aruba and the Marriot
"My husband and I were in Aruba last week for the 2nd time and we loved it once again. Our first visit was for our honeymoon and I highly recommend it as a honeymoon destination. Having said that, I will now note the following changes/differences/things that stayed the same. Property: exactly as we remembered four years ago, picture perfect and the sunsets are AMAZING. The property is u-shaped and both times we stayed in the base of the U...perfect location. Rooms 835 and 733. Floors 5-8 provide the best view..we think the higher the better! Staff: WONDERFUL! WONDERFUL! WONDERFUL! Room: clean and comfortable Beach: the best beach in Aruba. The huts are reserved by 8:00am, so make sure to go down to the towel hut and get a reserved card. Otherwise, when you finally get out of bed and stroll to the beach at the late, late hour of 9am, you will not have a hut and you will be subjected to the Arubian sun and sand glare. (think bad, bad, sunburn) Marriot Restaurants: SIMPLY FISH is on the beach, the tables are set in the sand right at the water's edge and you can't beat the ambiance of mother nature. CAUTION! The food is NOT what it was four years ago. $104 for bad food but a very romantic setting and great pictures. You be the judge! Next time, we will go for the pictures and skip the diinner. The fire alarm went off "Accidently" twice and assured us that our hearts were in good condition. Take the bus and go in to town...have lunch at Igauna Joe's! Fun! Over-all, Aruba is a fabulous place to relax, get a tan, snorkel, relax, watch amazing sunsets, and relax. If we go again, we will stay at the Marriot."
- Travel date: 28th July 2004
I LOVE ARUBA!!
"I've been going to Aruba every year since 1997. I have always stayed at the Marriott, most recently a week this past May, with absolutlely no regrets! The hotel staff are extremely accomodating, the rooms are spacious and clean, and the beach is great. I've seen rooms in some of the other hotels along Palm and Eagle beaches and they don't compare. The restaurants range from reasonable to pricey, but each offers something for everyone. Aruba itself is great and I definitely recommend going there. The American influence is there, but the Aruban culture is as well. Go and have some fun!!"
- Travel date: 26th July 2004
Loved this vacation!
"Loved this hotel and this vacation! The Aruba Marriott has spacious rooms and a beautiful lobby and grounds. I highly recommend this hotel for everyone of all ages. The food was fine at the hotel, but there are also many restaurants nearby. The staff was friendly. The pools and beaches at the hotel and along with the time share next door are very nice. You have access to both. I went ove the easter/spring break and it was not overcrowded, but busy. I would return tomorrow."
- Travel date: 10th July 2004
You'll love the Marriott
"You never know until you actually experience an island and a hotel whether it will meet with your expectations. In the case of Aruba and the Marriott, both exceeded our expectations. The water and the beaches of Aruba are beautiful. Our accomodations and the staff at the Marriott couldn't have been nicer. We checked out many of the other properties along Palm Beach and feel that we really made a good choice with the Marriott. If you're into snorkeling, I'd recommend taking the Mudishi excursion. The crew was a lot of fun, the food on board was great, and seeing the Antilles shipwreck was one of the highlights of our trip. The food in Aruba, although expensive (due to the 15% tax) was very good. I don't think we had a single meal that we weren't very satisfied with. Recommend Iguana Joe's for Caribbean Jerk Chicken or Ribs. Ruines Del Mar at the Hyatt for sea bass or grouper (the black swans swimming nearby was a nice added touch.) The fish at Salt and Peppers was also very good and not quite so costly. A romantic suggestion is Azull at the Wyndham. Eat right on the beach. I enjoyed the Aruba beer called Balashi. We rented a car for a day. Cost just $30. I believe it was Hertz and we coordinated it through the Concierge at the Marriott. Drove over to the east coast and viewed the Natural Bridge. Bring your camera, the landscape and ocean is spectacular. The weather in Aruba is pleasant. Be sure and wear extra sunscreen in the beginning. The sunsets in the evening are very nice. The water temperture in the ocean is very comfortable. You can walk out a great distance and still stand in water less than neck high. Cabs will indicate up front how much a destination will cost. Otherwise, bus transportation is $1 one way or $2 round trip if you're going downtown. Aruba is truly "One Happy Island.""
- Travel date: 30th June 2004
Elegance on an island
"Okay, this will be kinda short and sweet. I stayed at the Aruba Marriott in November 2002. Beautiful! Aruba is great and so is the Marriott. Loved every minute of it. Make sure you get the breakfast buffett at LaVista's included in your package. Completely worth it! Hotel is wonderful. Always had fresh towels, bed was always made. We stayed in just a standard room and were impressed. Every room has a balcony. Beach is incredible and the pool is amazing! (Pool was my favorite, even though we were on an island)! :) Downtown is a lot of fun. Definitely go to Carlos & Charlie's... and ladies, TONS or jewelry shops! (and for a considerably lesser price than what you would pay in the States) And, lastly, do not listen to people when they say there isn't a lot to do in Aruba. Everyday we were involved in some kind of water activity or a day/evening cruise. Also, on the other side of the island is very rural. The natural bridge is beautiful and you can horseback ride or take ATV's to go to the natural pool. (Great snorkeling). However, we did the ATV's and as fun as it was, it is a bit scary since you're going up and down very steep gravel hills. You've been warned about that. I definitely recommend this resort to anyone. Have a great time if you choose to stay here! :)"
- Travel date: 28th June 2004
Fantastic stay at the Aruba Marriott
"My son and I just got back from a 7 day, 6 night trip to Aruba and we stayed at the Marriott. I have stayed at some beautiful resorts all over the world and this one is right up there. The entire staff is extremely accommodating and polite. They routinely ask you if your trip is going well and they smile a lot. The food is not spectacular, but it is fine, especially the morning buffet at La Vista, which we enjoyed every day we were there. One notable thing about the Marriott is its location on the end of Palm Beach. This is critical, because it means the beach is less crowded than those in the middle of the resort area with walkers parading back and forth all day long. It is also right next to the Vela Windsurfing location, the primary (perhaps sole) windsurfing location on the island. It is a blast to watch the windsurfers and kitesurfers do their thing. The pool is fabulous and the daily appearance of several large iguanas is really fun for the kids. I would recommend any snorkelers consider taking a private trip with their family as opposed to booking one of the big catamarans through Red Sail. There are so many people on the boat that the staff has to spend half the time moving people around, handing out snorkeling gear, and giving instructions. Then when you are in the water, you are constantly having to watch out for other snorkelers instead of looking at fish. Spend the extra money. You're on vacation. It's worth it! As far as restaurants on the island go, my highest recommendation definitely goes to El Gaucho. There is something on the menu to please everyone. The steaks are spectacular. Just don't expect much in the way of service. Back to the Marriott, I would say it is definitely the nicest resort on the island. We will be back next year! Just ignore the multiple requests to look at the time shares next door."
- Travel date: 22nd June 2004
Loved this Place!
"My husband and I went to Aruba for our 1st anniversary. We had originally checked into the Hyatt and left after only 1 night. For about the same amount of money we got the an beautiful suite with an incredible view. The staff was friendly and polite. We loved the breakfast buffet and the restuarants on the beach. We spent 6 days on the island and never left the resort. Everything was great! I would highly recommend the Marriot Resort in Aruba for anyone that wants to have a perfect island vacation. Also note that Vela Windsurfing is right next door and Aruba is a great place to learn how to windsurf or kiteboard."
- Travel date: 16th June 2004
Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino is also called
- Aruba Marriott Resort Hotel
- marriott palm eagle beach
- marriott aruba