This was our 4th trip to Aruba, but our 1st stay at the Radisson. As we have done in the past, we booked our trip through Guy Gemore at MCM Tours (a/k/a Player's Choice) in March 2013. When I told him that we would be celebrating our "37th" Anniversary and my husband's "67th" Birthday during our stay and would like a room with a nice view of the ocean, he suggested a "Deluxe" Ocean View Room in the Aruba Tower, which was the most expensive category and ended up costing us $400 more per person than the standard "Guestroom" would have cost us. I requested a "Deluxe" (EVEN #) room on a "Higher" Floor (6th Floor) - closest to the "Beach" end (1618 - 1616 -1614) of the building. Our reservation confirmation stated: "Deluxe Ocean View - Aruba Tower - 37th Anniversary", but said nothing about "6th" Floor or "Beach" end as I had requested, and left that entirely up to us upon check-in.
I took the advice of other TA members and sent an email to both Germaine Wever, Guest Relations Manager, and Mark Frances, General Manager, 10 days prior to our arrival to request 6th Floor - Aruba Tower - either 1618 - 1616 - 1614. Germaine responded that she had our room reservation in for a "Deluxe Ocean View in the Aruba Tower" and she and Mark would do their utmost to have one of the requested rooms (1618 - 1616 - 1614) assigned to us. I also sent Germaine another email a few days prior to our arrival to remind her that we would be arriving on 8/26 and were looking forward to meeting her in person.
Upon check-in on 8/26/13, I was advised that we were assigned to Room 1308 in the Aruba Tower, even though the reservation form Louella was holding stated that we were to be assigned to Room 1614 (which is on the 6th floor) - not 1308 (which is on the 3rd floor). Room 1308 is not closer to the "Beach" end - is not on a "Higher" floor - is the total opposite of what I had requested. The 3rd floor is directly above Sunset Grille and, in addition to the "Deluxe" Ocean View being blocked by the roof of Mira Solo Martini Bar, that particular room also overlooks the roofs of smaller structures close to the Main Lobby instead of the tropical pool grounds the rooms closer to the "beach" end overlook. Room 1308 should not be classified as "Deluxe" at all. When I told Louella that Room 1308 was not acceptable to us because I already knew that the view was less than "Deluxe", which is what we paid for, and we requested to be on a "higher" floor and not a "lower" floor, she called Rosita over to speak to us, who in turn spoke to the Manager (I am not sure which Manager she spoke to), and offered us Room 1716, which is on the 7th Floor of the Aruba Tower. She told us that Room 1716 had 2 "Queen-Size" Beds instead of a "King-Size" Bed as we had requested, which would have been acceptable had they really been "Queen-Size" instead of only 2 "Doubles". We only found this out upon entering our room and by then we were exhausted from transporting our luggage by ourselves because no one at the Front Desk even bothered to offer us any assistance, despite the fact that we are a couple in our late 60s. I found this to be rather disrespectful and not the best way to welcome a "1st" time visitor if you would like them to return in the future.
Needless to say, after paying the top price for a "Deluxe" Room, and reminding them well in advance of our arrival of our request, we were given a choice of either a room with a "terrible" view for a premium price or that of either being cramped sharing one "Double" bed or sleeping separately, which is not the best way to celebrate your Anniversary.
Manager's Cocktail Party: We attended the Manager's Cocktail Party on Wednesday, 8/28, but were unable to stay for the entire time due to our dinner reservations. I wanted to meet Germaine and Mark to address the above issues. I was told that neither of them were in attendance - Germaine was on vacation - Mark had a doctor's appointment = Manager's Cocktail Party with no Guest Relations Manager or General Manager = very interesting.
While standing on the balcony of our room getting ready to go out to dinner, my husband heard his name being called as the winner of a "Couples Massage", but could not collect it as he had to be present to win. Another name was picked and it was given to someone else instead.
Casino: Upon check-in we were supposed to be given $200.00 Match Play to be used in the Radisson Casino. The Casino Host (Orlando) was only willing to give us $100.00 because he claimed that was all we were entitled to. When we told him that Guy Gemore of MCM Tours told us that we were entitled to $200.00 Match Play when we made our reservations, he told us that Guy tells everyone that so they think they are getting a better deal than they really are and that is the way he does business. However, Orlando told us that if we provide him with a copy of our confirmation, he would be glad to give us the additional $100.00. We went to the Front Desk, but no one could help us as everyone had already gone for the day.
Since our return to New York, as a result of reading additional comments regarding Radisson Aruba on TA, it appears that most people who book the Radisson, especially those who go through MCM Tours (a/k/a Player's Choice), book the standard "guestroom" (cheapest category), and when they check-in and are not satisfied with the location of their room, which is usually on the ground floor of the Curacao Tower facing the Riu Palace, they are offered an "upgrade" to a higher category room for an additional charge. I believe that may have been exactly what happened to us. Radisson gave the room that was supposed to be assigned to us (1614) to someone else who was willing to "upgrade" from a "standard "guestroom". Now that room was no longer available to us so they offered us whatever else they had available, regardless of whether or not it was what we had requested. We met another couple who booked a standard "guestroom" (cheapest) room through MCM Tours and were offered a room on the 4th Floor (TOP) of the Bonaire Tower with a view of the ocean at no additional charge.
I guess that's the way the Radisson does business - offer an "upgrade" to someone who was only willing to pay the "cheapest" price hoping for a "FREE" upgrade, and then offering someone who was willing to pay the HIGHEST price to begin with less than what they paid for.
Maybe I should have been informed by MCM Tours that this is the way Radisson Aruba operates at the time I made my reservations and I may have been better off with more $$ in my pocket.
The best rooms are the Deluxe Ocean View (EVEN #) in the Aruba Tower (1618 - 1602) which overlook th...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Thank you for your review. We were in fact 'notified' by Players Choice that this review would be forthcoming. I appreciate the time that you have taken to write your comments. I receive 20-30 emails a week requesting specific floors, specific rooms etc. I respond to all in the very same way, and this is, that we will do what we can. At no point was there ever a guarantee given to you that you would get the specific room requested, and this is evident by the fact that even Players Choice noted this on their confirmation to you. In fact our Deluxe Ocean View category stretches across a number of floors. The hotel is extremely busy year round with occupancies in excess of 90% daily during the summer, and this is why we just cannot assign rooms in advance to specific guests. Had we had a King Bed on a higher floor available, we most certainly would have offered this to you, and not the two Queens as described. Finding that exact balance is difficult, particularly when the hotel is full with Club Carlson members and multi repeat guests. We do the best we can to give you the room category booked, which I believe in this case we did.
Having said all of this, I am sorry that the initial room assigned did not have the view you had expected, however room 1716 has a spectacular view, and I hope made up for the inconvenience.
I note your interest in the fact that I was not present at the cocktail on this particular day, and although my medical situation would be a private affair, I am sure that guests would not have appreciated having me in attendance after a minor surgical procedure. Our Director of Operations was there however and would gladly have had a chat with you. I was available for all other parts of your stay, and would have welcomed any conversation at your leisure. It is a shame that you didn't make contact at the time.
I'm sorry that you were not present to collect your raffle prize, however the whole point of the cocktail party is to bring guests together, and prizes are raffled to those present at the time.
I'm not sure about $200 in casino vouchers, I certainly have no recollection of this offer being available over the period you stayed, and I would suggest that you take this up directly with your Travel Agent, especially as this was done verbally.
I am not sure where the free upgrade comments come from, however I am sure that if this is the case, then these folks would have been Club Carlson members who qualify for one based on availability. Free upgrades are very rare, and usually offered when the hotel has the space to do so, as mentioned above the hotel was almost at capacity during your stay, and a free upgrade would not have been available i'm afraid.
I am sorry again that we failed to meet your expectation, and would be happy to take up your situation personally. Please do not hesitate to contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.