I booked the Hilton for the week of North Sea Jazz, an excellent jazz festival - which I can highly recommend!
To start - I booked a Junior Suite through Expedia for 4 nights - and decided to stay another night in same room type, which I booked through the Hilton website itself. I e-mailed the hotel in advance to make sure these two bookings would be treated as a single booking, but the hotel unfortunately never responded.
When I arrived to the hotel, they could not find my booking - even though I had a printed confirmation. The person who checked me in was not very friendly and went to the back room for about 40 minutes (!) to try to sort things out. They did not offer us a drink, or even to sit us down somewhere while they sorted the things out – we not even an apology was made! He basically just came back with the room keys. Very unwelcoming. No information was given about Wifi (paid access? come on, we’re in 2014), breakfast, lounge access (which is given with the room type we booked), etc. I had to ask about everything. Not a good start.
When entering the room, I noticed that they actually gave us a full suite - rather than Junior. Very spacious, but with kind of a weird design - a kitchen type of corner, but without any actual kitchen equipment - but there's a random stereo on the bar - large walk in closet, but no shelves, etc. But the room itself was quite nice and bed very comfortable. The rooms are recently refurbished - but it still felt done a bit cheaply - some tiles were loose, electrical cables tied together with duct tape and some cracks and holes in the walls - minor things, but for such new rooms you expect a bit more eye for detail like this and I seriously doubt how well these rooms will age – but time will tell. The (ocean) view from the room (4th floor) was great and definitely one of the highlights.
The room gave us access to the executive lounge as well. The lounge itself is very, very minimal; simple breakfast and choice of few soft drinks. Alcohol is not free (also not during happy hour), but offered at slightly reduced prices. Snacks are pretty much inedible. The whole lounge would have been a big disappointment, if it would've have been for the lovely ladies working there - specifically Dawn & Kareen. These two ladies were the absolute highlight of our stay at the Hilton. They were so friendly and welcoming, great for advice and arranging things on the Island. Hilton - whatever you do (and there is a lot to do to improve) - keep these ladies!
Back to the property itself - the grounds are nice, good pools and the beach is great. Much nicer than the next door Marriott in my opinion - as it has a more relaxed vibe. The gym is good too. Definitely a good spot to relax for a couple of days.
My main issue with the hotel is the food. I was expecting it to be expensive - and it was - but the quality was poor (as mentioned in many other reviews). For that kind of money you really expect a better quality and choice of food. Room service pricing was insane - 22 USD for a chicken sandwich plus 4 USD delivery charge plus tax!! That totals over 30 dollars for a simple sandwich! Being rather isolated (taxis into town will cost 15-20 USD each way) you rely on the food of the hotel - Hilton, you have a lot of work to do here.
Another issue I had on the extended day of my stay (which I regret I did). They told me I had to move the room (as they never responded to my e-mail to join the two bookings). Which was fine to me. I checked out at 12 (as they requested), and the day before they told me they would have a room ready for us quickly. In the end we had to wait for over 3 hours to move to our new room. Front desk didn't care at all - one lady specifically had an attitude problem (and kept saying - check in time is 3 PM - you have to wait, even though were not checking in, but moving rooms). I wish the front desk attitude (and I am taking several people here over several days) was anywhere near the friendliness of the lounge - unfortunately it was the exact opposite.
Would I stay here again? Not sure; the location is very convenient for North Sea Jazz, the beach and pool is great – but staff really a mixed bag and the food and restaurants (including the BBQ) were really not good enough. I moved to the Santa Barbara hotel after my stay – where I paid less for the room and food – and both were so much better, you can’t even compare the two properties, so for my next visit it will be an easy choice.
The only thing I will really miss is the great team in the executive lounge. Dawn & Kareen, thanks a lot for making our stay still great!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Set in 23 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds and built on an historic 18th century Fort, the Hilton Curacao hotel boasts two private white sand beaches, infinity and freshwater pools and a PADI Gold Palm dive center on the property, and is one of the leading Curacao hotels. Located just ten minutes from Hato International Airport and five minutes from the center of Willemstad, the Hilton Curacao is an idyllic spa retreat. A Las Vegas-style casino and LivingWell Health & Beach Club are available on the property, and Guests enjoy immediate access to a range of watersports and Willemstad activities. The Hilton Curacao resort is charming, picturesque and perfectly placed for an active or relaxing visit to the Caribbean. Conferences and events for up to 400 can be easily accommodated in this Curacao hotel’s range of event spaces, making it the ideal destination for corporate functions, social events or intimate destination weddings. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Hilton Curacao Hotel Willemstad
- Hilton Hotel Willemstad
- Hilton Hotel Curacao
- Hilton Willemstad
- Willemstad Hilton
- Hilton Curacao Willemstad