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“Relaxing Honeymoon” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino

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Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   John F Kennedy Boulevard, Piscadera Bay, Willemstad, Curacao   |  
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5th nt free & $50 daily
Ranked #5 of 29 Hotels in Willemstad
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Raleigh, NC
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Relaxing Honeymoon”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2010

We used TripAdvisor to help us decide on our honeymoon location and hotel, so we thought it only fair to write a full review for those who came after us. We include plenty of pro's and con's so that you can be the judge, based on what your top vacation priorities are:

-Beautiful weather -- never rained; sunny and around 85 degrees every day. Just what we were hoping for, coming from an East Coast (US) winter.

-Hotel lobby, pool, and general landscaping -- when you pull up to the hotel, a calm breeze hits you and you see a great view of the pool and ocean. The lobby is all open-air with big fans and couches to relax on. The pool is big and clean, with a swim-up bar and lots of seating. Never felt over-crowded, and made for good photos. This hotel takes great pride in their "curb appeal" so you'll see people trimming the bushes and keeping things nice each day.

-Free upgrades -- because it was our honeymoon (and my husband is a Platinum Marriott Rewards member), we asked for a room upgrade (from resort view to ocean view) and were able to get one the 2nd day. They also gave us free champagne on ice because it was our honeymoon! Don't forget to mention this when you check in!

-All-Inclusive Option -- we narrowed down our own honeymoon hotel choices based on who would allow us to use Marriott points for an All-Inclusive food & drink option. I really can't imagine a true relaxing vacation without doing this. All of our meals and drinks any time of day were free. We had to pay tips at each one, but for 8 days this only ended up being less than $100 total - not too bad. The food and drink would have been QUITE pricey (we are a couple who is used to spending $20 on a typical meal for two, not $70!), so this put us at ease. Go for this option if you can, even just to spare yourself any unnecessary stress.

-Breakfast & Dinner at Portofino --lots of options, an attentive staff, more formal atmosphere

-Lunch & Dinner on the deck at Seabreeze -- if you can get a table up on the deck, you get a nice breeze and eat overlooking the ocean; the picturesque sunset dinner on an island vacation.

-Tiki huts on the beach -- Marriott provides all of the chaise lounges on the beach and there are a number of tiki huts you can sit at for shade and somewhere to put your drink. Get out on the beach early to claim one (by putting your stuff there) or try for one later in the afternoon. You don't reserve them formally, but they are definitely hot commodities.

-Proximity to ocean -- this hotel is RIGHT on the water. Couldn't be closer - just what we wanted!

-Free shuttle to downtown Willemstad twice a day -- good for 3-or-4-hour excursions into the city.

-Theme Buffet Nights -- every night but Saturday, the hotel has a Theme Night for dinner. We were skeptical of this at first, but it turned out to be great! Monday was Italian at Portofino, Tuesday was American (steak) night at Seabreeze, Wednesday was Mexican Night at Portofino, Thursday was Mongolian Stir Fry at Seabreeze, Friday was Secrets of the Sea at Portofino, and Sunday was Local Fare at Portofino. These dinners started at 6, and we were usually one of the first ones there. As a side note -- you need reservations for dinner at Portofino and Seabreeze if you want one of the best tables (see Seabreeze sunset on the deck comment above, ha). I think the busier dinner times are after 7pm, so we were pretty much always taken care of getting there at 6, but it's a good precaution to take. Food was great and it was fun trying new things!

-Snorkeling - there is snorkeling equipment available at a business run off to the side of the hotel, and this also came free with our All-Inclusive package. You can snorkel right in the water off the beach at the hotel; this was an easy and fun way for us to try snorkeling for the first time!

-Boardroom Beach Bar -- there is a bar right on the beach that serves food and drink from 11am to 7pm. Super easy and very convenient when we were out reading under our Tiki Hut.

-Language - English is one of the 4 primary languages of Curacao, so that was great. But you also had tourists and staff from all over the world there, so it was neat getting to hear other languages and learn about other cultures vicariously. Watch out for foreign men in speedos though :)


-Emerald Lounge -- right off the hotel lobby, this restaurant got it all wrong: the service was unbearably slow and the food wasn't great. They served me undercooked chicken the first lunch we had there. I sent it back and the second was fine, but even the pizza we had there was sub-par. I'd skip this one for anything but a quick drink sitting at the bar or going there to listen to music on the weekends.

-Hit-or-miss service -- We had some very nice, attentive staff in Curacao. We also had some slow, rude, or "huh? didn't we call for those towels like 45 minutes ago?" moments. As typical Americans, I'd say if we didn't care about super-fast service at meals or in our room, this would be a non-issue, but we did get a little annoyed at times. If you're in a rush to eat, don't go anywhere but Portofino -- they are the quickest. Everyone else seems to be on island time. For a husband who has to take insulin shots for diabetes 15 minutes max before eating...we had a couple of touch-and-go moments where if his food didn't arrive when it did he might have passed out. Just a precaution, especially if you have any health issues yourself.

-Very average room -- for as beautiful as the hotel lobby, pool, and grounds are, when you enter the hotel rooms (even Ocean View like ours), you can't help but be a little disappointed. They look like outdated Marriott rooms you'd find anywhere in the country. Small, a little musty, old AC units, and tiny bathroom. I was expecting something a little more "Wow" from a RESORT's rooms, but if you didn't look outside your window, you might have never known the difference between Curacao and Tennessee.

-Casino -- the casino was also very average -- smokey and not completely updated; the staff there was also a bit hover-y and/or rude, depending on the person. Not the best vibe there. But they did give us some free money to play with (you pay $10, they give you an extra $2.50) and we ended up winning some! We're not big casino people, but I still can't imagine this would be considered one of the best on anyone's list.

-Internet isn't free -- again, I'd expect for the price people pay to stay at a resort, the internet use should be free. It is in Charleston and other cities we've stayed at. But here you had to pay $5 for 25 minutes of use. Not ideal.

-Tourist trips not offered every day/consistently -- there is a Yellow tourist station right in the lobby which is great, but the trips they list aren't always offered, which left us disappointed when we wanted to go see the dolphins at the aquarium and they weren't even offering the trip on its scheduled day because they didn't have a driver. Bummer.

-Airport experience -- the airport itself was quaint and just fine. But having never traveled internationally, we weren't sure what to expect. Customs never looked at our bags coming into the country, which we felt weird about, and all they were really concerned about was that you filled out this survey about your reasons for coming there and how you liked your trip and gave it back before leaving the island. When we were returning to the US, we bought a water bottle at the airport AFTER security, but they had ANOTHER security check point as we boarded the planes. They frisked everyone (awkward) and took our water bottle - even though it was sealed and we bought it there! This wasn't like a US airport and I thought that was a bit odd.

Overall, our trip was great. If you're going for RELAXATION and pretty beaches/scenery - Curacao is great. If you're looking for a hotel room you never want to leave, then the Marriott isn't your best pick. They have more food options than the normal hotel, but I would say go for the All-Inclusive package so you're not thinking about what you would have been spending. Weather was ideal, we got to try a few new things and explore. I would recommend it, but we'll probably never return because there are so many other places we'd like to travel around the world! Maybe we'll go back once we're retired :)

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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2,199 reviews from our community

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  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (491)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
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English first
Atlantic Beach, New York
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
83 helpful votes 83 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2010

This hotel is really just a facade. It reminded of times when I was dating. I would get all excited about meeting someone because they looked beautiful, but when you tried to have a meaningful conversation with them you would find out that they were just a shell with nothing of substance inside. They recently spent a lot of money at this resort upgrading the lobby and the pool area, and it is truly beautiful, but when you go inside the rooms you realize what a 2nd class hotel this place really is. The rooms are very dated and worn, and so are the towels. The staff for most part tries to be nice, but you can tell that it is an effort for them, and there are even some that are a bit surly in the restaurants. It's obvious that they do not enjoy what they do, and no one gave them the message that they are in a service business and should be encouraged to be nice to the guests. On the plus side for this resort. The beach and pool area is really lovely, and it is a reasonably priced resort for the Caribbean. In general we have stayed at a lot of Marriott resorts around the globe, and this one is probably the worst of the bunch. It is just not up to snuff with other resorts in their chain. I personally think that when the Hyatt opens up this March they will pose a serious threat to the survival of this resort.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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New York City, New York
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2010

We just came back on Monday, January 25th. The Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino Curacao in the Netherlands Antilles was a well kept resort. Upon arrival we were greeted by the staff with a nice cold fresh fruit juice. It was nice and refreshing after traveling from New York City via Miami to Curacao. We were given a resort room on the Ground Floor. When we arrived in the room our view was a little obstructed by the trees. We called from the room and asked if we could be moved a few floor up. The staff was able to accommodate us to a room with a wonderful view of the Portofino Restaurant, Pool and Beach. Our balcony was right under a coconut tree, where the birds met us every morning. We slept most evening with the balcony door open, falling to sleep with the sounds of the ocean crashing on the beach. Speaking of the beach, the ocean current is strong and there are rocks in the water. I would strongly suggest wearing swim shoes. The pool was brand new and a nice x-perience. The Seabreeze Restaurant was a nice place to eat lunch. My favorite was frozen “virgin” mojitos made by staff member “Elvis” and the salmon salad was out of this world. The meals took time to prepare so just bring some good conversation and enjoy the view while you wait (about an hour). The food was good so it was worth it. He was a lot of fun! Everyday we did the “Spa” x-perience, Jacuzzi, Steam Room & Sauna. Staff member Gregor was always accommodating to our needs. The Portofino Restaurant was a little pricey but the Risotto was very good and so was the breakfast buffet. The resort had a lot to offer, activities, pool, beach, restaurants and a “FREE” round-trip shuttle twice a day into town (Punda & Otrabanda). It’s not a lot to do in Curacao. Come to this resort ready to rest and relax. We chilled out for 8 days and were not bored. Overall our x-perience was fantastic and I would defiantly come back to this resort again.

Stayed January 2010, traveled with friends
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1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2010

Curacao is a nice island but only average compared to the rest of the Caribbean. The Marriott itself was not up to Marriott standards. The food was overpriced and I did not have one good meal- take this with a grain of salt, I don't eat seafood. The pool was ok but small. The rooms need to be renovated badly. There was a giant water stain on our ceiling. The staff was not very friendly and seemed put out when you asked them something. The hotel staff lead us awry multiple times. Once we were given wrong directions to another beach on the island. Another time we were told ,inncorrectly, that a restaurant we were going to was Indonesian but it turned out to be mediterranean- not good for a non-fish eater. The casino was small but cute. Benjamin the black jack dealer was the friendliest person at the hotel and a pleasure to loose my money to. Overall the place is pretty but not anything special.

  • Stayed January 2010
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2010

We just returned from the Marroitt Beach Hotel in Curacao January 2010. We found the rooms badly in need of a upgrade. They were clean but old. The beach front room was nothing special but the view was wonderful.The staff is wonderful but the servive is really slow and unorgainzed. We stayed in a hotel in this same caliber in Costa Rica. The bathroom was out of this world, we had a small fridge and all the furniture and decor was new looking.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Hilton Head Island, SC
Top Contributor
102 reviews 102 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2010

We just spent the last three days of our eight day Curacao visit at this wonderful hotel. The grounds were beautiful and impeccably maintained. The beach was great , but you are smart to wear beach shoes to get over the coral/rock zone, common on most beaches we went to, at the edge of the water before you get to the sandy ground. You can snorkel well out by the rocks 50 yards from shore and I saw lots of beautiful fish, even some cuttlefish. Pool, complete with in water bar seating, was very nice, and well laid out. We had lunch at the pool restaurant each day and enjoyed all of them. Saw 20+ iguanas at the 1:00pm feeding spot, but the large lizards kept better time than did the person responsible for the feeding who had not shown up by 1:30 when we left. The rooms were very clean, but could probably use some updating in the near future. This comment is partially based on brand new rooms we had at the Renaissance for the first 5 days of our trip. Staff, particularly at the pool bar were very friendly and helpful. My only real complaint was with the Portofino restaurant, where we had a very poor quality meal compared to other similarly priced meals we had on the Island.
I have traveled the world extensively during my working career, having spent 60-80 nights per year in hotels(most were obviously not in tropical resorts) for over 30 years, and I felt really comfortable and relaxed here and would stay again on my next visit to Curacao.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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12 reviews 12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2010

Just returned from the Curacao Marriott having traveled to more than 10 islands in these waters in the past decade - would love to return! This Marriott's property was visually gorgeous but it was the attitude and friendliness of the staff that really distinguished our stay from others. Spent several sunsets w/ Cerita (the best!) @ the Boardroom and particularly enjoyed speaking w/ TJ, Humphrey and the congenial gentleman at Voila. Food and service were both very good; would highly recommend this spot for lovely beach/location. Rented a car, toured Willemstad, the Rif Fort & Renaissance, Le Bistro Clochard (v good food/service uneven) and Cru (well prepared steak and sides w/ very friendly/classy staff), Mambo Beach barbecue Sunday (delicious!), and Bounty catamaran/snorkeling short day sail (v windy that day but a great trip/crew/ best barBQ ever! and snorkeling was varied and abundant. Recommend spending time @ Cas Abou (best bitterballen/great w/ Amstel Bright!) and Porto Marie - this is an island that knows what swimmers, snorkelers, divers crave! Though dusty and dry in the interior, the coastal delights are many; if we had another week would have checked out the museums, had dinner at other fine dining spots, hit Hook's Hut, found the blues club @ Avila or some salsa. We happily ran out of time & would recommend this island w/ the Dutch touch - not as American as Aruba - and we liked that. B&B Boston

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Additional Information about Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino

Address: John F Kennedy Boulevard, Piscadera Bay, Willemstad, Curacao
Location: Caribbean > Curacao > Willemstad
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Willemstad
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Willemstad
#3 Spa Hotel in Willemstad
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Willemstad
#4 Romantic Hotel in Willemstad
#5 Family Hotel in Willemstad
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino 4*
Number of rooms: 247
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Bay Casino are located directly on a private beach in Willemstad, Curacao. Spend your days basking in the sun at our resort pool or beach, or experiencing all history and adventure Curacao has to offer through our on site Tour and Car Rental desk. Once the sunsets, you will experience amazing dining by sea at our beachfront restaurant Seabreeze. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Hotel Willemstad
Curacao Marriott Beach Resort And Emerald Casino
Marriott Willemstad
Curacao Marriott Beach Hotel Emerald
Marriott Curacao
Willemstad Marriott
Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino Willemstad

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