We stayed 4 nights at the Renaissance Marina (the adults-only side of this hotel) and were very happy with our experience. Even though they're working on renovations in the lobby, it didn't get in our way. The hotel did a great job of minimizing the impact on its guests.
My friend and I loved the pool area and the private island. The pool at the Marina is pretty tiny, but we were able to find a spot (shade for me, sun for him) each day. Poolside cocktail service is attentive, but not overbearing. Usually you have to hunt them down to get your check. The only complaint was there is no hot tub. One might argue, why do you need a hot tub in the tropics? But we always like to sit in one for a little bit at night to relax...ah well.
The private island is a gem. As noted elsewhere, George the boat driver is a riot. Also, one of the other boat drivers stopped underneath the approach to the airport so we could watch a plane landing from underneath - pretty awesome! However, there is a lot of jet noise at the island, which detracts from the otherwise relaxing nature of the island. There are iguanas and flamingos which will beg for food, but they're harmless and it's pretty neat to see these animals up close. The beach is pretty rocky, so it's hard to get in the water comfortably, but once you're in the water is perfect. Since you're sheltered from the ocean, it's calm and easy to swim in. The island wasn't crowded any of the days we were there.
To respond to some earlier reviews - yes, you do have to take a boat, which is a pretty short ride (less than 10 minutes with a stop at the Ocean Suites). But they run every 15 minutes or so, so you're not out much time if you have to wait. In my mind, it's worth it.
Also, the only mosquitoes on the island are in the mangroves on the nature trail. I didn't see any skeeters on the beach.
The island is worth the price of admission - I highly recommend the Renaissance just for this.
As mentioned above, renovations are in progress. They're starting on the rooms soon, and they need it. Our room was clean, if slightly worn. We had a great view of the marina, but that was the best part. I wish we had a full balcony. The bathrooms were the biggest disappointment - so small and the bathtub/shower was lacking in size, lighting and water pressure. Tile floors would be an improvement over the current carpeting - I hope they replace that component. There's even carpet in the area of the bathroom where the sink is. Ugh!
A couple of other notes:
Compared to other Marriott properties I've stayed at, the bar pricing seemed pretty reasonable. There's even a happy hour from 4:30-6 - 2 for 1s! (But do not try to order 2 for 1s at 6:01 - it ain't gonna happen and they won't be apologetic, even if you tried to track down your server at 5:55 and she said she'd be right back. Bypass her and go to the bar!) Try the mojitos! The ones I had at the Blue Bar at the hotel were the best I had on the island! Food seemed pretty decent in price and quality as well (I like the Bento box concept by the pool), but not a lot of options for a vegetarian.
Marriott platinum members - beware. A lot of the things we take for granted are not available here, including a free breakfast. You can get a discounted breakfast if you stay for 3 days and pay in advance, but it's still $15/person. The buffet is pretty good - well stocked, fresh and has a build-your-own omelet station. Also, the business center is a $5 minimum charge, no matter your elite status. I was bummed about this, as email is the only way I communicate with my boyfriend when I'm out of the country - so I hooked up my phone to wifi in the lobby instead (which I didn't want to do - I'm on vacation!)
All in all - I'd stay here again, but will wait until the renovations are done before booking my next vacation!
- Also Known As:
- Renaissance Aruba Resort And Casino
- Renaissance Aruba Hotel Oranjestad
- Renaissance Aruba Hotel
- Renaissance Aruba
- Renaissance Aruba Resort Casino
- Renaissance Hotel Aruba
- Renaissance Oranjestad
- Renaissance Aruba Resort
- Oranjestad Renaissance
- Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino Oranjestad
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The wonder of Renaissance Aruba isn’t just white sandy beaches, or crystal blue waters. The chance to discover something wonderful is all over the island, and we can show you the way. Our location in Oranjestad’s vibrant downtown gives you endless opportunities to indulge your inner shopaholic, get the thrill of a hand of poker in our two casinos, or take in Aruban culture from the beating heart of Aruba’s capital city. For an escape within an escape take a water taxi to Renaissance Island, Aruba’s only private beaches. Its pristine, secluded shores offer peace and solitude simply not found anywhere else in the world.We offer two hotels each with their own unique experience, but still allow you to enjoy the amenities of both. The Renaissance Marina Hotel was especially designed to be an intimate couples escape, and features a water launch to Renaissance Island from inside the hotel itself. Renaissance Ocean Suites is perfect for families so the littlest ones can discover the wonders of paradise for themselves. No matter where you go with Renaissance Aruba Resort and Casino we will be your guide to finding everything this happy island has to offer. ... more less
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