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“Bucuti & Tara ... Awesome”

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Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort Aruba
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Seattle, Washington
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Bucuti & Tara ... Awesome”
Reviewed October 23, 2012

My wife and I just spent a wonderful 8 days at this resort. We were extremely pleased with the facilities, and level of service. Of special note were the hotel’s cleanliness and the staff’s attention to our every need … and the “no kids” policy!

The beach is pristine and well maintained. The rooms have a euro-style simple elegance. The new exercise facility now under construction looks to be first-rate. A pleasant surprise was that food & beverages on the property were very reasonable.

I highly recommend Bucuti & Tara to anyone that wants first-class faculties and service on a perfect beach.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Bob B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Newburgh, New York
Level 4 Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2012 via mobile

My husband & I celebrate our anniversary. every year in the Caribbean. This year we chose Aruba and the Bucuti & Tara beach resort. I can't begin to put into words just how wonderful the staff is. This resort is what other resorst should strive to be. Bucuti & Tara set a high standard and they do fantastic job of it. This is from the genuine and kind staff, to the cleanliness of the property. I can say without any hesitation, that is the best on the island of Aruba. My husband and I can't wait to get home, to book for next year!!! I would like to thank the fallowing staff, Mary Ann , Omar,Natasha,Margarita,kamush, Angelo,Derek,Madelin,rayland,and Michelle.God bless you all, you all lovely and

  • Stayed October 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank nylovetotravel307
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Liverpool, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed October 21, 2012

Stayed at the Bucuti in 2010 and could not wait to return, the repeat return visit did not disappoint. Adults only resort so no screaming kids running around, while we have & like kids its nice to get away from them every so often !!!
Rooms are spacious and immaculately cleaned. The beach at the hotel is amongst the best three in the world and is worth a visit all by itself. The hotel bar is situated on the beach, 20yrds from the ocean, prices during happy hour 4-6pm are reasonable with spirits $3.50 and cocktails $5. Hotel concierge team are very helpful and will arrange all your restaurant or excursion reservations throughout Aruba.
RESTAURANTS- Carte Blanche, Passions, Windows on Aruba ALL excellent (see separate reviews)
ARASHI BEACH- small beach with reef for snorkelling, don't pay for excursion as the local bus takes you there and snorkelling equipment is available from reception. Well worth a visit but no need to pay out for it.
BARS- Sopranos, Señor Frogs, Gusto all worth a visit.
Airport is 15 min transfer $22 by cab.
This hotel is not the cheapest on the island but is definitely the best.

Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
9 Thank The-Allfords
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed October 20, 2012

Just returned from our honeymoon. This was our first visit to Aruba. Very happy we chose the Bucuti. We were greeted by very nice people when we arrived. They greeted us as we pulled up and offered champange as we checked in. Our room was great. It was not super fancy by any means but perfect. Clean, nice size and a good view even though it was the garden view room. We were very pleased. The beach is beautiful and we always found chairs. We got down to the beach around 10 am each morning and never had an issue. Breakfast is great and plenty of food to choose from. There are 2 locations for breakfast. The Tara Lounge is air conditioned so that was our main location to dine. The Sand Bar was fab for happy hour or a snack if you were looking for something while at the beach. We loved our stay and would recommend it without hesitation. I would also comment that most of the people we met there were repeat customers. We will be a repeat customer as well. Plan to book in the coming months for our 1st anniversary, Overall just a fantastic place with really nice people waiting on you. Looking forward to our next visit.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank SJFK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 20, 2012

My husband and I visited the resort for our honeymoon. I'm so happy we decided on this place, we stayed in a beach suite which was beautiful. The staff is so friendly and nice. By the end of our stay they started to know us by our name which is nice.They were so eager to help you with any of your needs. One day I wasn't feeling well my husband asked if he would take breakfast back to our room for me which of course they said yes. That day I received calls to my room to see if I was ok or needed anything. Next morning they sent me a beautiful fruit basket with a get well note. Overall cant wait to go back beautiful resort awesome staff .

  • Stayed October 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Thatlovelygal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anniston, Alabama
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed October 19, 2012

My wife and I got married in Aruba. Since it was a destination wedding, we left our wedding party at another hotel and stayed here for our Honeymoon. We were greeted with nice cool towels and champagne. Our room was not ready right away, but they gave us access to the hotel. They stored our luggage as we went to the beach, which was perfect. It was so quiet, in July, and relaxing that we fell asleep under umbrellas and were not bothered.
When we got to our room they had a shell on the door that said just married! and a complimentary bottle of champagne and cheese.
I have to say we were looking for a quite, clean, and relaxing place to stay. The Bucuti exceeded our expectations.

Room Tip: Try and get a room that faces the courtyard. The balcony overlooking the courtyard is nice place to...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank W_Will
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Albany, NY
Level 5 Contributor
41 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
Reviewed October 17, 2012

My husband and I stayed at the Bucuti on our honeymoon 9/18 – 9/25/12. We have stayed at several five star all-inclusives and were a bit worried about staying at a 4 star resort with just breakfast included. September is hurricane season, so we selected Aruba due to the weather. We selected the Bucuti because it was an adults only resort with an exceptional beach and top reviews for service on Trip Advisor. In 2 out of 3 of those key areas, it did not disappoint.

TRANSPORTATION: We took a cab from the airport to the hotel. It was easy, safe and just $20. This is the first time that we did not order a private car to pick us up and it was not needed. We walked outside to the taxi line and were on our way in less than one minute. This is the only airport in all of our travels where we did not have people aggressively approach us.

CHECK IN: The Bucuti is located on a circle, at the end of a dead-end street. Someone immediately came out to take our bags and escort us to the front desk, where we took a seat. The cool, scented washcloth and champagne appeared about half way through the check-in (I was actually wondering whether we were going to get it). I noted that the same person who took our bags also had to go get the washcloths and then pop open the champagne, while 2 others just sat at the front desk and didn’t help him. This was the least impressive check-in out of all of our travels. Inez never smiled or welcomed us to Aruba or asked how our flight was. She immediately was down to business, asking for my credit card, and flew through a list of so many things that I actually had to ask her if they were in writing somewhere. We were given our stainless steel water bottles and escorted to our room. I thought it was a fast and highly impersonal check in and wondered if this initial impression was a reflection of the type of service the Bucuti provided. The grounds are clean and basic, with cactus gardens. There is a covered walkway between the lobby and the rooms. The phone card that we purchased in the lobby gift shop did not work in the phones in the lobby and they allowed us to use Skype in the office to call home, which was an impressive experience and great service.

ROOM: We stayed in Tara Suites, room #334. We booked it 9 months in advance at a rate of $400 per night. We had requested and received a room on the 3rd floor (the penthouse in on the 4th floor). I literally said WOW when I saw the view from the balcony. It is simply magnificent and by far, the best view we have ever had. Pictures do not do it justice. The beach is literally right under the balcony! We received a complimentary honeymoon welcome basket with a bottle of champagne, champagne glasses, Gouda cheese, water crackers, chocolate and a congratulations card. It was the nicest welcome basket we’ve ever received. There was a Honeymoon sign and heart hanging on our door. The handle on the toilet was broken and the first thing that my husband had to do is take the top off the tank and reattach the handle. Thank you to the Trip Advisor reviewer for warning us that the balcony door locks behind you and you should remember to bring your key when you are out there. This should absolutely be mentioned to guests or even better, eliminate this feature. We were always afraid that we would forget to bring the key out there or one of us would go back inside and the other would be locked out. The water from the faucet was never cold (we asked about it and was told that this is the way the cold water is in Aruba), so we ended up filling a bottle with water and leaving it in our refrigerator so that we did not have to drink warm water.

FOOD: The air conditioning was broken every day in the Tara Lounge, so we ended up eating breakfast outside at the Pirates Nest, rather than sit in the hot lounge with fans and open windows. Seven days is an unacceptable amount of time to have broken air conditioning in the only indoor restaurant in a place this hot and there was no alternative provided. We asked about it several times and were told that they were “working on it”. One day, we ordered lunch at the Sand Bar and they had to deliver it to our room because we had to get away from the heat. The Bucuti should provide tops for their disposable coffee cups, to allow guests to safely carry coffee from the lounge. We were pleased with the quality of the food at the Pirates Nest. Seating is outside and you walk through a curtain of hanging beads to enter a room with the breakfast buffet. We had dinner there 3 nights and the food was excellent. They even have lighted menus, which was quite impressive. Janice was our waitress for dinner one night and she is a true example of exceptional service. We were looking forward to the Jamaican dinner and the salad with raisins in it. We received a standard salad. Janice went to investigate and was told that they were out of raisins. Our dessert was supposed to be grilled pineapple. It arrived cold. Janice said that wasn’t right and took them back in to be heated up. She then went on to give us a complimentary drink. When we pointed out how she stood out as the best service we had received all week and she told us how much she loved her job. Kay also stands out as a friendly, personable waitress at our breakfast.

DRINKS: The drinks at the Sand Bar were always strong and tasted great, but again, the service was fast and impersonal. We actually started counting to see if we would ever get acknowledged when we went to the bar to get a drink, but it never happened. We would stand there, someone would quickly come over and set a coaster in front of us and wait for the drink order. There was no greeting, no smile or any small talk about your day. We just received the drink and the bill. The bartenders would then go back to watching the game on TV or chatting with each other. Beach service wasn’t any better. Most days, we did not receive the flag on the beach to order drink service. We asked the waiter when we got up to grab him and he apologized and said he kept forgetting to bring it over. In all of our other resorts we have stayed at, the bar was the fun place to be and had highly personable bartenders. We never saw it here. We were surprised to see that a 15% gratuity fee was automatically added to every drink and food purchase, yet there was also an additional line on the bill for another gratuity. When we asked the bartender what the difference was (our only conversation with anyone at the bar all week), he said that the automatic deduction was shared with all of the staff and the additional gratuity was specific for his service. We have traveled to several 5 star resorts and have never seen this done and it was not explained to us when we checked in. I can certainly see this type of process for food orders, but not for bar service where there is only one person serving you. It left us thinking that perhaps this was why the service was rarely friendly; a guaranteed gratuity is already there.

BEACH: The beach is the crowning jewel of this resort and is absolute perfection in every way. It clearly ranks as one of the best beaches in the world. We always had chairs available under an umbrella in the back row (4 – 5 rows from beach). We enjoyed very long walks in every direction. It was peaceful and relaxing. There was a big age range of guests and all were quiet and respectful (there was no loud partying here). There were topless women every day on the beach. The lady at the towel hut was very friendly and personable.

MISCELLANEOUS: There was outstanding security on the resort and I always felt safe. There was no one on the beach trying to sell you things, although, interestingly, we had 2 men come every day to do cartwheels and flips on the beach for a few hours to get tips. There is a gift shop in the lobby that sells alcohol and snacks. The champagne was less expensive here than at the duty free shop in the airport. There is a small grocery store within walking distance in the mall next door that has better prices, but you can’t beat the convenience of having this in the resort. We watched the deconstruction of the outdoor gym hut. They moved all of the equipment inside and cut down trees. Construction of the new restaurant is underway, so we did see yellow tape and privacy boards up next to the walkway to the building. Weather was always very hot. It rained 3 times, a sudden strong downpour of rain that leaves you no time at all to run for coverage. Guests crammed inside the Pirates Nest by the breakfast buffet and ended up eating next to condiment containers at makeshift tables in the back of the room one day, waiting for the rain to stop. Our movie night was rained out twice.

CONCIERGE: This was a mixed experience. I was very impressed with the concierge service prior to our arrival, when I emailed them to make dinner reservations with friends staying at a nearby resort. I’ve never had a concierge do this prior to my arrival and thought this was an exceptional service. Once we arrived, however, the concierge desk in the Tara building was almost always empty and there was no sign saying when they would return. We were left thinking that we paid for the upgraded Tara Building and didn’t even have our own concierge. When we asked, we were told that the desk was closed due to the broken air conditioning in the Tara lobby. We thought it was interesting that the guests had to sit in the heat every day to have breakfast, but the concierge did not. We did have one experience with the concierge in our building the day we arrived. We asked for dish soap for our kitchenette (to wash out our stainless steel water bottles, which had a paper in them saying they should be washed before use) and asked to modify the dinner reservation that was previously made. We had to ask a second time for the dish soap the next day, because it never arrived, and the dinner reservation was not on file when we arrived at the restaurant, so this experience was not impressive. We booked one excursion through the concierge in the lobby. Again, service was fast and efficient, but not at all personal. She booked what we asked for and that was it. This is a huge opportunity for improvement for the Bucuti. We’ve stayed at large resorts (like Iberostar, Excellence and Secrets) where the concierge remembers you and greets you by name. In a building as small as the Tara Suites, this should be a simple task. We have always been greeted when we walked by the concierge desk in other resorts, but this was lacking here too.

ISSUE: We had one occasion where we asked to speak to a manager and the situation was handled extremely well. When we woke up, there was no running water in the sink, toilet or tub. We assumed it was due to the construction and used the bathroom in the main building. That day, the urinal in the men’s room by the beach overflowed and the soap dispenser fell off of the wall and went all over the floor. We returned to our room and I was taking a shower when the water stopped and I was unable to rinse my hair. Of course, there was no one at the concierge desk in our building, so we went to the front desk. They said no one else had reported an issue. At this point, it was the second time in one day that we had a water problem, the beach bathroom was disgusting, we had called twice to have the TV in our sitting room fixed and it was still broken, we still didn’t have the dish soap in our kitchenette and someone had taken our complimentary champagne flutes. That, on top of all of the numerous examples of impersonal service at $400 a night took its toll. We asked to speak to a manager and Francis immediately appeared. He apologized for all of the inconveniences, fixed every problem within hours and gave us a complimentary dinner at the Pirates Nest in one of the best seats. The chef came to our table to ask how our meal was. Francis stopped by to check in that every problem had been resolved and even included our drinks in the complimentary meal. We were thoroughly impressed and just wished that the Bucuti had provided that type of service consistently throughout our stay without us having to complain to get it.

SERVICE: Service is the key to having an exceptional vacation. I read reviews on Trip Advisor complimenting the service at the Bucuti and was impressed that the owner replied to any issues. So I was absolutely shocked that the bulk of the day-to-day service we received was so impersonal and it is the reason for my 4 star rating. We would pass employees on the grounds and they would not greet you. I had an employee pass me on the path to the building and then let the door slam in my face, rather than holding it. The bartenders, the wait staff and the concierge did not greet you, rarely even smiled at you and just had a fast and impersonal style, like they were just doing their job and had zero interest in you. As we noted, Francis is a strong manager, but there were only 3 employees (Janice, Kay and the lady at the towel hut) who ever went out of their way to engage us in personal conversation all week. I’m from New York and I’m used to that style, but don’t expect to see it when I’m on vacation paying this price and I have NEVER seen it in any of the other resorts we have gone to. We still talk about the best check-in that we had with Vanessa at the Iberostar Grand Bavaro and remember our favorite waitress, Maria, at Excellence in Mexico. What people remember about their vacation is service. The Bucuti has a lot of work to do with service if they want to rise to this level. I do note that we met Deborah, the manager, on the day we were leaving. She came to greet all of the tables at breakfast and it’s clear that she strives to deliver high class service. We noted how improved the service was just by her being present (e.g. the person opening the beaded curtain to the buffet actually said good morning to us for the first time). We were left thinking that Deborah must have been away the past few days, because we couldn’t imagine her tolerating mediocre service. We mentioned that we had read the Trip Advisor reviews and had been looking forward to meeting her or the owner. She indicated that the owner had been out of town for a few days. When checking out, she came over to say goodbye to us. I asked if she knew the name of the scented oil by the elevator because I loved it so much and wanted to get some at home to remind me of my honeymoon. She said she had some herself and would look into it and email me the name. We thought this was an impressive way to end 7 days of primarily mediocre service; however, three weeks later, we are still waiting for the email. This sums up the Bucuti – great intentions, but inconsistent delivery.

OVERALL: We had a great honeymoon at the Bucuti, but it was not exceptional due to the service. This is a 4 star resort with 3 star service. I still think the Bucuti is the best place to stay in Aruba if you want an adults only resort with great food and a perfect beach, but I was disappointed with the service we received for the bulk of our stay. We did meet several people who have returned to the Bucuti for years, so it is obviously very popular. We had considered staying at the Hyatt and stopped there to make a comparison. The grounds of the Hyatt are gorgeous, but the beach is terrible. There are a lot of water sport vendors located there and the water is filled with boats. We also saw the Riu Palace, when we went on our snorkel excursion and it has barbed wire on the side of the resort, leading up to the same crowded beach! The resorts next to the Bucuti all allow children and were very populated.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
14 Thank MexicoCat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort Aruba

Property: Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort Aruba
Address: L.G. Smith Boulevard 55 B, Palm - Eagle Beach, Aruba
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Aruba > Palm - Eagle Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#1 Luxury Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#2 Family Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#4 Business Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort Aruba 4*
Number of rooms: 104
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This adults-only, romantic resort, located on Aruba's spacious and beautiful Eagle Beach, is award-winning and owner-operated. The 4-star and 4-diamond resort receives high satisfaction ratings and recognition that includes #1 Hotel for Romance in the Caribbean 2017, Top 3 Beach Destinations in the World, Conde Nast Gold List, and Green Globe High Achievement Award. Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort is eco-friendly and offers a tranquil boutique experience with friendly service. The intimate atmosphere is exclusive and relaxing to couples seeking tranquility and romantic experiences. No groups and no all-inclusive packages available. Two top restaurants available on property and romantic beach dining. Breakfast is free daily.Resort's website offers you the Best Available Rate including all taxes and fees, free breakfast and free WiFi. (Not all-inclusive) ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bucuti & Tara Beach Resorts Aruba Hotel Palm/Eagle Beach
Bucuti And Tara Beach Resorts Aruba
Bucuti Beach Hotel
Golden Tulip Palm Eagle Beach
Golden Tulip Oranjestad
Aruba Bucuti Resort
Bucuti Beach Resort Aruba
Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort Aruba Palm - Eagle Beach

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