Friday, August 29, 2008

Review Passions at the Amsterdam Manor Aruba

A friend as well as my parents, had recommended Passions on the beach at the Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort for dh and my anniversary dinner.

When we arrived we were immediately greeted by Diana the hostess/maître d' and everything from the food to the service, it was nothing less than perfect and a wonderful evening. Our table was closest to the water with torches and a lantern on the table. I can imagine how nice it would be at sunset, however since we can view that from the comfort of our patio, and like to eat later, dining under the stars with the Aruban tradewinds are just delightful in my book!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Aruba Hyatt vs. the Radisson vs. the Westin

Dh and I have stayed at the Hyatt once. Very nice resort, top notch as a matter of fact. Beautiful swimming pool with waterslide and swim up bar (if that is a deal maker or breaker for you).

Downside is the beach can get crowded and the rooms have only step out balconies, unless you go for the very big bucks and book an oceanfront suite.

In recent years, we have also stayed at the Radisson four times and the Westin when it was still the Wyndham, three times. The rooms at the Westin have all been renovated since we stayed there.

The free form pool is not as modern as those at the Hyatt or Radisson, but as of this writing, is scheduled for renovation in the upcoming month. The beach at the Westin is admittedly windier than that of the Radisson and Hyatt. With that said, if we could not afford the Radisson, and the Westin were cheaper, we would definitely stay at the Westin.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Review Kini Kini Tours Aruba

This trip to Aruba, we had decided to take dd to see the Natural Pool. Dh and I had driven there twice previously on our own via 4 x 4. Dh hated driving there and did not want to do it again. He is allergic to horses so that was out. The new Tom Cars looked cool on the Aruba Off-Road website so we decided we would give that a shot. The day before we left for Aruba they emailed a confirmation and substituted Baby Beach for the Natural Pool. The reason we booked the tour was for the Natural Pool, so we cancelled.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Q. & A. Radisson Aruba Bonaire Suite vs. Curacao Suite

Aruba Bound

Q. What is the highest floor of the Radisson's Bonaire and Curacao Towers?
A. The Bonaire Tower is four floors and the Curacao Tower is six floors.

Q. What are the differences between the balconies of the Bonaire Suite and the Curacao Suite?
A. For the Bonaire Suite, there is only one standard size balcony and it is off of the bedroom. There is a "Petite" Bonaire suite, but it does not have a balcony, it is "French" or step out balcony. (far left side of photo).

For the Curacao Tower, there are two Curacao Suites on each floor. Each suite has two balconies: an oversized balcony (or first floor patio) off of the living room and a standard size balcony off of the bedroom. The oversized balcony directly faces the ocean and overlooks the swimming pool.

Q. What is the difference between the Bonaire and Curacao Suites?
A. The Curacao Suites are a step up for sure. Curacao Suites: two balconies vs. one, bedroom slightly larger, a little further from the ocean, but less restricted view. There are 2 of these suites on each floor.

The Bonaire Suite in my opionion has a nicer bath. The Bonaire Suite offers a separate full size stall shower and separate whirlpool tub.

Bonaire Petite Suites offer a wet bar as well as an oversize "power shower" in lieu of the full suite's stall shower and whirlpool tub combination.

The Curacao Suite bedroom is a slightly bigger and the living room has a wet bar. I did not like the bathroom quite as much as the Bonaire Sute.

Depending on personal preference, the Curaco Suite has a slightly larger sink counter than the Bonaire Suite's.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Review Jolly Pirates Aruba

Aruba Bound
Along with our friends and their two daughters we took the "Sail, Snorkel and Swim" excursion with Jolly Pirates. It was a nice day and the kids especially had fun. Most of our boat was filled with a family attending a wedding in Aruba and they were having their own little party, but not rowdy or drunken. We did the normal snorkel stops of Arashi and Malmok. Unfortunately there was a great deal of moss like seaweed, part of nature, but just kind of creeped me out swimming amongst green blobs.