First of all, please note that the Marriott & Stellaris Casino, the Marriott Surf Club, and the Marriott Ocean Club are all on the same property. If you are staying at any one of the three, you will have access to most amenities at the other two except there is a lazy river and large pool at the Surf Club that only surf club visitors can use and another "adult only" serenity pool at the Marriott Hotel that only those guests can use. Besides that, all visitors can feel free to go to any of the three properties if they choose. Marriott Surf Club has only a pool bar and I don't think they have any other restaurants - we barely went through this property.
Stellaris Casino: This casino is just ok. It seems clean and nice enough but it's mostly filled with slots. I saw a few $10 blackjack tables and one or two roulette tables but no craps and the electronic poker/blackjack machines were limited. However, the casino had a special going on where if you sign up for the VIP card and play for at least 30 mins on the slot machines then the next day they will reimburse you for up to $50 of losses per person. We both lost $50 the first night so we were down $100 but then the second day we cashed out around $175 so it wasn't a bad deal for free entertainment.
On Property Food: The food on property is pretty expensive. The first day here we spent $26 just to get two bagel & egg sandwiches with a bottle of juice. I strongly recommend driving down the street to the Super Food grocery store and stocking up your fridge with breakfast and lunch supplies. There's a sports bar with decent (but still expensive food), a sushi bar (around $12-$15/roll), a Ruth's Chris steakhouse, an oceanfront seafood restaurant and a few other places you can get sandwiches.
Beaches & Views: The beaches here sure are beautiful and clean! The sand is very fine and soft yet somewhat hard packed near the surf so it's easy to walk along the beach for a while. All the beaches in Aruba are public beaches so you can go wherever you want. This also means there are many vendors for snorkeling and such all along the beach - these are not affiliated with the hotel but most of them seem really good. The views from this hotel are on the side of the island such that the sun SETS over the water so you don't have to get up early to watch the sunrise, yay!
The Rooms: The lobby and hallways at the Ocean club are in the process of being remodeled but right now they aren't very impressive and the hallway was a bit smelly. Approaching our room I was a little nervous but I was pleasantly surprised when we entered. the rooms are nicely remodeled with clean updated furniture. The couch isn't the most comfortable but the beds and pillows were fine. The kitchen appliances are new and clean and the cabinets were all stocked with pots and pans (we are in a one bedroom interval timeshare exchange room - not sure if all the rooms are like this). However we sadly have no view, our windows look out onto a sidewalk between two resorts and we are on the ground floor. Try to ask for a room higher up, it's a bit noisy from the ground floor (although it is nice not having to wait for an elevator).
One more note about the resort: don't feel obligated to go through the hotel to book anything. You can easily find pretty much everything you want to do either online through Trip Advisor or right on the beach. I do recommend renting a car here if you don't want to have to take a $30 cab ride to and from the airport plus to each activity.
Overall a pleasant resort, Aruba is a fun and safe place to visit
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Set among beautiful Palm Beach is the immaculate Marriott's Aruba Surf Club. With a variety of on-site activities, filling your day with fun is no obstacle. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Marriott`s Aruba Ocean Club Hotel Palm/Eagle Beach
- Marriotts Palm Eagle Beach
- Marriotts Aruba Ocean Hotel
- Marriott Palm/Eagle Beach
- Marriotts Aruba Ocean Club
- Marriott's Aruba Ocean Club Palm - Eagle Beach