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Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino
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Reviews (6,333)
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Reviewed September 23, 2007

We booked this hotel through Priceline for just $100/night. When we arrived, we were promptly greeted at the front desk and immediately checked in. It's located at the end of the hotel strip, so you have more privacy and a really awesome beach. The water was very warm and you can take rafts in with you and just lay out for hours. The palapas were always available, no matter what time you got there. We never actually paid for one during our entire stay there, we just brought chairs over and sat down. There is a water activities tent on the beach and you can reserve just about anything through them. We went parasailing and loved it. When you're walking around the grounds, you will see full size iguanas as well as smaller lizards of many colors. Just watch out for the lizard poop.

One of the bar guys mentioned that the hotel is undergoing 24 hr renovation in the South tower, but if he hadn't said anything, we wouldn't even know. They kept the construction confined to one area and you won't even notice it going on. The North tower is set to begin construction at the beginning of October and will be completed by December. Even though those rooms haven't been renovated, they were spacious and very modern. They don't look like they need renovating.

The entire staff is extremely friendly and accomodating. Pool is open 24 hrs as is the fitness center. The fitness center has all the equipment you would find at your local gym so you can work out even when away from home. It was always at least half full during our stay.

To get free wireless internet, just simply go downstairs and log on that way. You can get one free day. They don't tell you that, but instead say you have to pay to get it.

We ate at La Vista a couple of times during our stay. The breakfast buffet is fairly priced at $18.95 per person and had many different choices. They have a different dinner buffet every night. We only went to the Italian buffet, but they also had Mexican and Oriental buffets during our stay. They are priced at $38.95 per person. Once you're at the resort, you won't want to leave, so consider all the food options available. We did venture to El Gaucho one night given their hight reviews, but were disappointed. The filet was extremely tough and chewy. Don't know what all the hype is.

Overall, Aruba is an amazing place and the Marriott makes your experience that much better. It's amusing to see people posting pictures of toilets on balconies in their reviews. If that's all you saw on your trip, you need to open your eyes and see what Aruba is all about. These are the people that see the negative in every place they visit. Aruba is a beautiful place, friendly people and gorgeous beaches. Do not hesitate to stay here and feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank OceanLove3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 13, 2007

Rennovations:
I really didn't hear much of the rennovations (even though those toilet bowls were still on the facing balconies) because Aruba is pleasantly windy and the pool bar played latin music. Be aware though that rennovations went on at all hours. A lot of hotels on Palm Beach were going through rennovations and were much more noisy when I walked by. Overall the rennovations probably had a positive affect on my stay - didn't have to pay for the palapas, always got a palapa in the first or second row, empty chairs at the pool, etc. The hotel was by no means empty, but it was much less crowded than other hotels in Palm Beach.
Ocean Club:
I really didn't like how you weren't "allowed" to use the Ocean Club's lazy river/pool yet they really treat the three Marriott properties like a campus...your room charge even works at their swim-up pool bar. That's garbage.
Marriott Rewards:
I'm a Platinum Marriott Member and I didn't use points on this trip. There was an elite service desk for rewards members in the lobby but it was rarely staffed to assist with my vacation as the welcome email I received a week before my stay indicated. I don't feel like I received any special treatment which was somewhat of a disappointment.
Rooms:
The rooms are going through major overhaul probably to keep pace with the Hyatt. The Hyatt lobby & outdoor areas are beautiful. The Marriott rooms do need rennovation but also seemed like a good cleaning would help. Overall, good sized rooms & bathrooms and it was nice having a mini fridge.

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank VAtraveler57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 24, 2007

Pleasantly surprised at the little impact of the renovation!! No noise at all in room and very little noise by pool..There on Sunday and Monday..maybe we were just lucky!!!Really had serious doubts about changing 2 night stay 8/19-8/21 due to renovation, following 5 night stay after Surf Club,but very glad I stuck with original plan!!!!!!!Stayed with husband, 2 sons, one college age and one middle school!!! Actually liked the Stellaris beach a little better as it wasn't that far to walk back and forth from Palaypa to pool...Enough younger people for my sons to enjoy some fun volleyball games going on!! Had oceanfront room which was gorgeous and spacious!!! View was breathtaking! Service was very attentive!!..Toilet problem resolved in 20 minutes and rollaway request about same amt of time!!! Rollaway quite comfortable for my younger son by the way as compared to some!!! Loved the walk in closet(we used it as changing room!!!).Bathroom situation was so spacious!!! 2 sinks and very large vanity area..Due to low occupancy, beach/pool area not that crowded!! Didn't pay extra for palyapa..went down for free one at 7:30!!! Loved the climate..the tradewinds really keep you so cool!!! So deceiving..apply plenty of sunscreen often!!! Loved Waves Beachbar for lunch!! The caesar salad with grouper is delicious and big enough to share for light eaters! The buffalo wings are also really good!!! Ate both mornings at LaVista...very nice presentation..made to order eggs, ommelettes, tons of food, cereals, pancakes, etc!!! Had breakfast included in our rate which was nice..I think otherwise it is $20 for adults and $10 for kids..Excellent quality though!!! Concerned about smoke from casino, but due to health concern of asthma assigned very far away from casino..Not a trace of smoke in our wing!!! For a hotel guest room, felt rooms were very spacious!! Marriott grounds/pool were kept immaculate!!! Will probably return next yr!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled with family
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8  Thank jerseygal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 1, 2007

2nd Trip to Aruba and our family (like usual) had a ball. The first year we stayed on Eagle Beach so we wanted to try something different this year. The Marriott is at the end of the strip so we decided to book there. We figured being @ the end would allow us more beach and easy access to the North end.

Check in - We asked to be close to another family we were traveling with and at first we weren't. The agent spoke with her manager and they were able to put us all on the same floor. She was very cordial, polite and seemed to really want to make us happy. Our rooms were ready just a bit before 4 which was nice.

Room - Our travels have taken our family of 4 to quite a few places and we have seen many different types of rooms. This one didn't disappoint. We had plenty of space with 2 full beds, huge bathroom with double sinks and a walk in closet. Inside the closet there were two bath robes and a heavy duty safe. We took advantage of both.
The beds were some of the most comfortable I have ever slept on. My children even commented on them several times. Each day they were cleaned put back in perfect condition by the room attendant.
Our fridge was about the size of your typical dorm room fridge but it certainly did it's job. We packed it with food and drinks and never really had any space issues. Everything stayed cold as well.
Our balcony faced directly towards the ocean and what a view it is. You can see for miles and the water is very tranquil. It is without a doubt one of the highlights of being on this island.

Overall, the room was above average and we were very happy with our choice. I have nothing to complain about in this aspect.

Elevators - VERY slow. I bet we took the stairs down more times than we took the elevator. I believe even a few days it was actually broken. We saw workers tending to it at least 2 days we were there. Being that or room was in the middle of the resort and the South Tower elevators weren't working the North Tower elevator was the hotel's only option. I don't mind taking the stairs but a 4 star hotel should be able to get this issue fixed in a timely manner.

I think one of my favorite parts of this hotel are the pool loungers. They are padded full length chairs that you can just melt away in. The pool has plenty of shade and most of the chairs even have your own personal shade umbrella hooked onto it. You can raise it or lower it to what you want.

The beach was very clean and we never had an issue with getting a palapa. Though we had a hard time getting one in the first two rows we never had to go without. Maybe this was because of the construction. I bet if it were busy season and filled to capacity that getting a place could be very difficult.

The towel tent was always very accomodating and they had an adundance of clean towels. They do ask your room number before giving you towels but you don't have to check back in before putting them in the laundry cart. I personally saw them bring clean towels to the beach 2 or 3 times a day. You can switch out your used ones at anytime.

Our casino experience wasn't the best. We aren't big gamblers but we do like to try our luck at Blackjack. No mercy here folks. The dealers are fast and as personable as the drink cup you use to hold your beer. The lowest table we saw all week was $10.00 and we never saw anyone win money. It pretty much took the fun out of playing.

The restaurants all looked very nice. Tuscany was a bit out of our budget so we didn't visit. We did get breakfast most mornings at the cafe on the first floor. They serve donuts, bagels, ice cream and coffee. No complaints here. Decent prices as well.

Workout facility was absolutely awesome. Don't let people tell you they don't workout on vacation. Everyday we would pop in to get a good run in or lift some weights and it was always at least half full. I think they have 12 treadmills that are all on 25 minute timers. If you want to go longer you need to make sure no one is waiting for one.
The 2nd floor features stair climbers and rowing machines. Each workout station has your own headset and volume changer for the many TV's they have. The TV's are also closed caption so you can read what is being said as well.

Now to the construction. Yes, it goes on everyday from 8 a.m. until about 5-6 p.m. I'm not going to lie and say it doesn't bother you because it does. We heard a wide variety of tools being used from jackhammer, drills, sledgehammers and saws. There is also the occassional slamming of tile into the dumpster bins. It isn't something I looked forward to hearing while on vacation.
You have to ask yourself, is this really going to bother me to the point of wanting to move our stay? I think if I were on my honeymoon the construction would bother me more. Actually, if I were on my honeymoon I think I would stay somewhere else entirely. But for a family vacation where you probably spend more time on the beach or outside the resort the construction is fine. It was noticeable but I never thought we should leave. It is a necessary evil in order to improve your future stay.

Overall, we had one of the best trips ever. In todays day and age it's hard to get your whole family together and agree on things such as where to stay, eat or play. This resort has everything we are looking for and I'm sure we'll be back. We felt very safe and never had any major issues. This also goes for the whole island in general. You won't find a place in the Carribbean as safe as Aruba. Which is one of the main reasons we can't wait to get back.

Happy Travels! Make it a good one.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled with family
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17  Thank OhioStateFan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 28, 2007

We stayed at the Marriott from 19 through 26 July 2007 and absolutely loved the property, the people, and the ambiance of the hotel. Great fitness center too. They are undergoing major renovations through September and although the noise was not as bad as I expected, it was noisy. I enjoyed the quiet of the beach each morning until 8:00 a.m. when the construction began but found that I got use to it once the day started and I became occupied with the beach. In fact, I think we benefited from the construction because there was ample room at the pool and beach. It was funny to see a toilet on the balcony of each room under renovation. Once I saw a construction worker taking a break on one. Wish I had my camera at the time. The people there are great; always happy and smiling – ready to do whatever is asked. Special props to Leslie, one of the managers, for helping me with a self induced room problem - - Thanks Leslie! My only complaint about my experience at the Marriott, construction aside, was the drinks at the pool bar. They were the weakest I have ever had! We were sure they were all virgin something or others. At $8 to $9 each I expect a decent drink. Believe it or not, that is the only thing that stands out in my mind about the hotel. Other than that I highly recommend it.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
6  Thank kacclt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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