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“All's well that ends well”

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Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed June 6, 2005

We recently returned from seven nights at the Amsterdam Manor, which we picked based on the reviews here at TripAdvisor. We returned mostly happy with our experience at AM, which started out poorly but ended well. For me the most important thing to point out to future travelers, which some of the previous reviewers hinted at, is how different the rooms can be at AM. When you stay at a Motel 6 you can probably guess that the most expensive room there is not going to be a whole lot more luxurious than the cheapest, just as at a Ritz-Carlton the cheapest room is still going to be very nice. I don’t think these kinds of generalizations hold up at AM.

We went in just in search of a comfortable room and booked the standard studio, preferring to spend our money on activities and good meals. (From reading the other reviews it was obvious that this is not the place to stay if you want a water view as the hotel is too low to the ground for a good view.) The room we were given at check-in was really horrendous. It was very small, dark and so hot (because it had two sun-exposed walls and a high ceiling) that the ac couldn’t keep up with the temp. The worst thing was eye level windows which, if you closed the blinds for privacy, blocked out all daylight. It was tired, depressing and just an unhappy place to be. I would rank it below basic level hotel rooms such as Hampton Inn and Comfort Inn—not a bargain at any price. Rooms of this type are not seen on the hotel’s webpage either. Because I “kept complaining,” in the words of the manager, we were given a superior studio on an upper floor, which is more of what I had imagined based on the hotel description and prices. This studio had updated fixtures, a balcony, natural daylight—it was fine but not luxurious by any stretch of the imagination. I think the folks who were so enthusiastic about AM must have booked suites—but be warned that you may not get the suite you book—at the time we were checking in a group of 4 that had reserved the two bedroom suite was not going to be able to get that particular room until the following day because as the clerk said, “we regularly overbook.” If you read the other reviews this seems to happen on a regular basis.

Some things I did like about AM: the grounds were lovely and well-maintained; the atmosphere was European with lots of Dutch guests, not American so you really felt like you were faraway from home; it was very quiet at all times which made for good sleeping and napping; I loved having the kitchen to store drinks, restaurant doggie bags and make am coffee (if you are a coffee drinker bring your own to Aruba—we could not find decent coffee in the stores, as well as basket-type filters); the location was very convenient—near mini-golf, bowling, better restaurants. Beach was great and use of hotel floats is free. The room was kept very clean by housekeeping.

Some miscellaneous things I didn’t like: the food at Mangos is terrible—stay away; if you care about having alcohol in your cocktails avoid the bar as well—I am a drinking lightweight and could have three in an hour on an empty stomach without any effect; the bed was one of the worst hotel beds ever—extremely firm and the cheapest bedding ever (on a positive note it appears they wash the whole set between guests including mattress pad and bedspread); the smell—we noticed it about 10% of time we were there but it just wasn’t on AM’s beach but everywhere in the general area.

Finally, a note about service: some people were helpful, others weren’t. Make sure you follow up if you rely on them to confirm your restaurant reservations, in some cases they didn’t do as we asked or didn’t bother to let us know that they had been successful in confirming. The little touches other people mentioned we didn’t experience either—we were on their beach every day and never saw a fruit kebab or cool cloth, we never had a welcome bottle of champagne (we were on our honeymoon and they knew it) as some did and the turn-down service was pointless in comparison to what I’ve experienced at other hotels—they just left a chocolate, didn’t straighten up rumpled bedding, fill ice buckets or do anything else.

  • Stayed: June 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
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7  Thank booklover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,926 - 1,932 of 2,334 reviews

A TripAdvisor Member
new york, ny
19
Reviewed May 26, 2005

Me and my husband stayed at the amsterdam manor from 5/19-5/24. The hotel was very nice the only compliant was the smell which breezed by every now and then. Overall the landscape of the hotel was lovely and very well kept. The staff was very friendly and helpful i would recommend this hotel. the food at mangos was excellent. we stayed in a standard studio, although it was a little small we had great views of the ocean which is just across a narrow street. overall me and my husband had a very pleasant stay.

  • Stayed: May 2005
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9  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
252
Reviewed May 19, 2005

My husband and I just returned from 6 days in Aruba and we stayed at the Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort. We chose Amsterdam Manor because we did not want to stay at one of the larger chain hotels, hoping for a more personal and relaxed vacation. We made the right choice. While the Amsterdam Manor does not have all the amenities of a larger hotel, it is not lacking in personal attention or luxurious accommodations. We stayed in the 1 bedroom suite with ocean view, but were placed in the standard studio for 1 night at the beginning of our stay. I would recommend staying in a 1- or 2-bedroom suite period. The studio is small and uninviting. The suite was spacious and well appointed, featuring a spacious living room and kitchen, and a large bedroom and bathroom with Jacuzzi tub and shower. The linens appeared to be high quality, and we especially loved the orange sorbet comforter on our king size bed and the accompanying velvet blanket underneath. Each room of the suite is equipped with ceiling fans for comfort and the dual air conditioning system (with thermostats in the bedroom and living room) made our suite nice and cool on the hottest of days.

We enjoyed the patio for breakfast and an evening drink. The rattan patio furniture and glass-top table were quite accommodating, especially with the canvas umbrella shade that could be extended to block the sun on steamy mornings. We did not eat at Mango’s, the hotel restaurant, but found their coffee and pastries to be a delight in the morning on our patio. The breakfast buffet is not really a good deal for the money; the fruit was warm and the flies were impossible to battle. But, you must try their coffee---far better than anything available in the States.

The kitchen in our suite was fully stocked with china cups and plates, silverware, serving utensils, toasters, and more. We visited the local Kong Hing supermarket (on the way into Oranjestad) and picked up some groceries for breakfast each morning. Unlike most hotel minibars, our suite came stocked not only with the usual accoutrements in the refrigerator (such as beer, sodas, bottled water, juice), but also a selection of dry gourmet items (such as chocolates, truffles, candy, and nuts). Because we were on our honeymoon, we were also treated to a bottle of wine and a bottle of champagne on arrival, free of charge. The display was lovely; the hotel staff brought in a chilled bucket with two wine glasses and fresh picked flowers nestled in around the bottle.

Speaking of flowers, the landscaping at the hotel is immaculate. Their exterior appearance is by far the best on the island (rivaling the big chains further down the street). When you walk through the entryway, you will notice several round concrete planters filled with palm trees and varieties of exotic blooming flowers. Many of the flowers have small signs to identify them by name, which we found interesting .

The front desk staff, overall, was extremely helpful and accommodating of our requests. After a few days, most everyone knew us by face if not name. The lobby is stocked with plenty of brochures on activities and events available on the island, as well as a menu book including detailed menus for most, if not all, of the major restaurants on the island. Most of the hotel staff were quite willing to make reservations for rental cars, activities, and restaurants, which was extremely helpful because you cannot make local calls from your room without being charged. We bought the Ventaha phone card in the mini-market for $10, which gave us 1 hour of talk time. A helpful tip: be sure to notify your bank that you are leaving the country, and note that 1-800 numbers cannot be dialed from any phone on the island or through the Ventaha phone card.

Eagle Beach was quiet and relaxing. Crossing the narrow street is not a big deal, as other reviews have suggested. For one thing, the street is not a busy one, and even when there is light traffic, we found that most drivers were more than willing to stop and allow us to cross.

We would recommend the Amsterdam Manor to travelers who are looking for a quaint hotel with personal service and comfortable well-appointed rooms. We relied heavily on reviews from TripAdvisor to book this hotel for our honeymoon, and we are so glad that we chose the Amsterdam Manor. We were not disappointed.

  • Stayed: May 2005
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22  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2005

First off I should mention that we are a family who has not travelled for 5 years. First there was a very needy Rhodesian Ridgeback who graced our lives and now a baby boy. As our child has turned 1 we decided to get back into the swing of travel and chose Amsterdam Manor & Aruba because we don't like large hotels and we needed a vacation somewhere we could be assured of great weather. As for the weather it was 90 degrees and sunny every day! As for The Manor, it's a good hotel, it definitely gets the job done. The restaurant is average at best but pulls off a very nice lunch which can be delivered to the beach and there's an above average wine list which is price friendly. The only real drawback is the sweet smell of sewer which can descend upon the hotel with just the slightest wind shift. We became quite good at watching the flags for clues as to when the smell would arrive. It's not enough of a problem to stop us from going back but it takes away from the idealic Caribbean experience. Overall we would suggest getting the 2 bedroom ocean view no matter what your party size, they are the farthest from the waste water treatment plant and have good airconditioning and hot water.

  • Stayed: May 2005
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6  Thank largeman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
New York, NY
15
Reviewed May 11, 2005

My boyfriend and I stayed at the Amsterdam not only due to its price, but b/c it looked adorable and quaint. However, the service left much to be desired. I realize we went during low season, but to wake up to construction at 6 am is ridiculous. Also, we had trouble w/ the hot water and called about it assuming it would be taken care of in a timely manner. The next morning, once again, we had trouble w/ the hot water and when I called, the host at the front desk actually asked if I wanted maintenance to come (indicating they hadn't the previous day). I said "Yes! I would like a hot shower." The furniture was incredibly cheap. i.e.) headboard of the bed was simply propped against the wall. It wasn't even attached to the frame! There were days when I knew for a fact that our towels were simply picked up off the floor and hung back up on the racks in the bathroom. As well, we never received new bars of soap, nor were our water glasses in the bathroom cleaned or replaced w/ new ones. When I went to the front desk and asked for fresh towels, she simply handed over two beach towels, requiring us to drop them back off at our room before we left for our dinner reservations that evening. Additionally, the restaurant Mangos was horrible! They had decent sandwiches, but the entrees were downright poorly prepared. I feel awful for anyone who went all inclusive and honestly, it is beyond me why anyone would go all inclusive at any resort in Aruba when there are so many good restaurants to choose from! Overall, it was OK. I'd give it a 5 on a scale of 1-10. If you are not concerned about luxury in any sense of the word and just want to save $, by all means stay here. It def. wasn't horrible, but I will be willing to pay twice as much a night to get better service the next time I visit Aruba. P.S. Mysteriously, the postcards we sent out through the Amsterdam never arrived to any of our friends or family in the states. I really wonder if they even sent them out.

  • Stayed: April 2005
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5  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2005

My husband and I and our 2 college-age sons spent a week at Amsterdam Manor from March 19-26, 2005. We had a wonderful time there and throughout the island. We found AM to be comfortable and convenient, with a beautiful beach, good happy hours, and a nice restaurant.

Check-in went smoothly. Sasha was so helpful explaining what they had to offer.

Our room (208) was a 2nd story 2-bedroom suite w/ well-equipped kitchen, dining area, living room and private balcony with a great view of the pool & ocean. Our bedroom had a queen size bed, firm but comfortable, & bath w/ large whirlpool tub, but little counter space. The boys had twin beds and a smaller bath w/ shower. Other than the lack of bathroom counter space, our only other complaint was having ants in the kitchen by the sink. My husband thought they were attracted to the caulk. He got a can of bug spray from housekeeping and that took care of the problem. The air-conditioning worked just fine and there were ceiling fans in each room.

Beach – AM has a beautiful beach with jet ski & boat ride rentals. The chairs have standard vinyl strips, but are plentiful & comfortable. There also is a lot of shade from trees & palapas. We didn’t have any trouble crossing the street to get to the beach because it’s divided with a large median. We enjoyed walking south on the beach going by other low-rises and a public camping & beach area. I loved to sit in the shade at our beach reading & watching the pelicans dive into the clear water – very picturesque. At check-in we each received a pool towel card and never had a problem getting a towel.

Pool – nice size, waterfall, plenty of chairs, even had some morning water aerobics classes. However, we preferred relaxing at the beach which was gorgeous.

Staff – Front desk people were very helpful – Sasha, Janine, Illis, Christy, Julio - good about making restaurant, taxi or activity reservations. Good service at Mango’s & Alex, a waiter there, danced with me at the manager’s party (my husband doesn’t fast dance). Filo, the main pool bartender, poured great drinks and was very friendly. .

Housekeeping – Generally good except for sometimes having more than enough bath towels, but only 1 washcloth for the 4 of us. Or 3 spare rolls of toilet paper, but no hand towels in bathrooms. Otherwise, it was kept clean.

Restaurants – Mango’s had good food at reasonable prices. Excellent burgers and a nice buffet breakfast. Because it’s covered, but open air, there were some pesky flies. Other places we enjoyed – El Gaucho in Oranjestad – we had an 8:30 reservation but got there a bit early, they gave us a pager and sent us to the cigar bar across the street, but that was too warm & smelly, so we waited outside which was pleasant because the weather was beautiful. They paged us around 8:40. Restaurant was busy, a little loud, but we got used to it. The steaks & my fish took awhile, but they kept us supplied with their delicious bread. The food was outstanding, the steaks done to perfection and my fish (grouper) meal superb. By Appleton WI standards it was expensive ($22-$29 for steak; $19 for my fish), but it was excellent and the portions were generous. What really added to the meal were the 3 sauces available – butter/garlic, marinated onion & bbq. Laguna Fish Market at the Radisson – excellent Italian buffet served Tue & Th. ($21.50 pp) with protected outdoor seating on a small manmade lagoon; also, a good guitarist played. After, we went to the Radisson casino where our younger son won $120 after playing $3 on a nickel slot. Pasta & Pastabilities at La Cabana, next to Am. Manor, has great pizza at very reasonable prices – deluxe 16” for $15.50. A front desk person recommended The Old Cunucu House (east of high rises) for its authentic Aruban cuisine. My husband said the ribs he had were tough and not tasty. However, the goat stew and keshi yena the rest of us had were excellent. Also, it was very unbusy that night which made it almost too quiet.

Shopping – We didn’t do a lot of this, except for groceries at Kong Hing supermarket where prices and selection were quite good. The edam cheese there was cheap and delicious. I did buy some local aloe vera hand lotion as gifts and, surprisingly, it was cheaper at the AM mini-mart than at La Cabana’s stores.

Location - The hotel is in a great location at the north end of the low rises, next to a bird sanctuary. There’s a bus stop right in front of the hotel with fares at $1.15 one-way or $2.00 rd-trip. It was convenient having La Cabana right next door because it gave us access to their shops, restaurants and casino without having to stay at such a big place.

Activities - Julio arranged a good snorkeling trip on Red Sail with transportation from AM to the dock included. The catamaran went to a reef and the WWII German sunken ship Antilla. Both sites had good snorkeling although the surf was rougher over the ship. They had an open bar with a good assortment of drinks and some snacks, too. We rented 2 motorcycles (more like overgrown mopeds) for 2 days and tooled around the island - Cal. Lighthouse, Natural Bridge, Casibari Rocks, Arikok National Park and went south to St. Nicolas stopping at Charlie’s Bar – overpriced food, so we each just had a Balashi beer.

Airport – We left on a Saturday, so there were lines for security, immigration & customs. It took us just under 2 hrs to get through all that. We found good prices on a lot of liquor in the duty-free shops – they all seemed to have the same pricing. Although the airport was renovated a few years ago, there still weren’t enough women’s restrooms in the gate areas.

Other – It was so convenient having 2 computers available for free outside the office and a laundry room with 2 washers/2 dryers at $2.00 per load. We were able to save 15% ($6/ticket) on our Red Sail snorkel trip using a coupon in one of the books available at the front desk. That Thursday evening traffic was stalled going south right in front of the hotel due to Easter weekend travel. Good Friday is a national holiday so many local families head to campgrounds further south for the weekend. That happened again Fr. evening, but we ate right at the hotel for their buffet and folkloric dance performance so we didn’t have to worry about getting anywhere. Happy hours are 2 for 1 on everything. Every Th. evening there’s a Managers Party with a live band, some snacks & special drink prices. The band we had was super – a man on keyboard & his teenage son on percussion. Because the drinking & casino age is 18, both our sons were able to go out on their own to clubs & casinos. They said that Carlos ‘n’ Charlie’s in Oranjestad was loud ($5 cover charge) and that Crystal and Alhambra casinos were OK. The buses only run until midnight, so they had to take a taxi back on nights when we didn’t have the motorcycles. The Royal Cabana casino right next door at La Cabana was fine and so convenient.

Overall - We had a great vacation with Amsterdam Manor contributing so much to our enjoyment. We would love to return and would stay at Amsterdam Manor again. We really recommend it.

  • Stayed: March 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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20  Thank runner45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2005

Congratulations Amsterdam Manor; This was our first trip to Aruba, we were also not all-inclusive(but it was available). What a wonderful place to stay, friendly,helpful and professional. Always willing to go the extra mile to make your stay relaxing and fun. Did I mention the STAFF, oustanding. well-done, from the front desk, to housekeeping, servers, grounds and managment.Juergen(Manager)Kristie,Sasha,Ilis, (desk) Filo(pool bar),George and Klaus(Mangoes)Maria(housekeeping) and all the other staff. Our stay was restful, fun and we cannot wait to go back.
We stayed in a standard studio, lovely, very clean, well stocked , nice kitchenette. and beautiful view.
Mangoes Restaurant, good food, reasonable and well presented.
Our time was spent on the beach, lots of lounges,nice beach bar, good swimming for all. Nice long beach to walk.
At all times we felt safe and welcomed by all.
A wonderful spot for couples, families or singles looking for a peaceful,beautiful and safe place to stay. There is lots to do everywhere you look and the staff are willing to set anything up for you including Dinner reservations.
Thanks again to all of the staff at the Manor.
You must go to Aruba and the Manor you will not regret it.

Stayed: April 2005
21  Thank greendo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort

Address: J.E. Irausquin Blvd 252, Palm - Eagle Beach, Aruba
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Aruba > Palm - Eagle Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#6 Family Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#6 Romantic Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
Price Range: $250 - $600 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 72
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The difference will be felt the moment you set foot in the Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort. The hotel’s unique Dutch colonial-style architecture and Caribbean flair make it a special place. A small hideaway with the luxuries of a large resort, located on the world’s most beautiful beach, Eagle Beach. The warm, friendly, and personalized service along with the finest facilities on the island will give you an unforgettable vacation. Visit the resort’s website for the best available rates including taxes and fees (excluded service charge). It may occur that the resort appears to be sold out online on your preferred date. If this occurs, please contact us directly. We will be glad to find a solution! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Amsterdam Manor Beach Hotel Palm/Eagle Beach
Hotel Amsterdam Manor Beach
Amsterdam Manor Aruba
Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort Aruba/Palm - Eagle Beach

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