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Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort Aruba
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A TripAdvisor Member
Closter, NJ
13
Reviewed October 9, 2004

We stayed at the Bucuti from 9/28-10/5 for our honeymoon. We did alot of research before finally deciding to stay at this resort and it was the best decision we could have made. The staff is so friendly and nice and willing to accomodate you in any way possible. The rooms (except the Tara Suites) are average but that really didn't matter to us. We loved the large balcony overlooking the beach and ocean....the sunsets are amazing.
We went to the high rise area to check out all the hotels along Palm Beach and nothing compared to Bucuti's Eagle Beach. Palm Beach is very narrow and looks like people are laying out on top of each other (we were there in the low season and I can't imagine what it would be like in the high season). Bucuti's beach is so big and has dozens of palapas spread out all over the beach so that you didn't feel like people are all around. (We could never hear what the people closest to us were saying to each other.)

If you are looking for a relaxing environment, lots of privacy and no kids, then Bucuti is the right choice.
We plan on going back!!

  • Stayed: October 2005
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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3  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Howell, NJ
13
Reviewed October 1, 2004

My husband and I just returned from a 6 night stay (9/20-9/26) in a Tara Suites penthouse at the Bucuti for our honeymoon, and it was absolutely perfect!!!!!! When we arrived, we were kindly welcomed and given a complementary glass of champagne. When we got up to the penthouse on the 4th floor, we were awed by the spectacular views of the beach and ocean. Bucuti has the best beach in Aruba by far!! One day we walked down by the beaches of the highrise hotel section, and were counting our blessings that we decided to stay at the Bucuti instead of one of the highrise hotels. The beaches were small and extremely congested. Many people mentioned the inadequecy of the pool at the Bucuti, but the way I see it...who needs a pool with a beach like that? If I wanted hot weather and a nice pool, I'd go to Florida. I went to Aruba for the white sand and beautiful clear water. The Bucuti has PLENTY of that. I've heard stories from friends about waking up at 7 in the morning to get a chair and a good spot on the beach at the highrise hotels. There is none of that at the Bucuti. My husband and I went down to the beach anywhere from 9 to noon, and always found a hut near the water.

We felt that the service at the Bucuti was second to none, and having stayed at numerous 5 star hotels, I consider myself pretty hard to please. Service was so personalized that one of the front desk employees even offered to drive us to a restaurant for our dinner reservation after her shift was over. Amazing!! Our flight was 7 hours after checkout, so the Bucuti was kind enough to offer a hospitallity room for a half hour before we left for the airport to shower and get ready for the trip home. This was a very nice gesture. We did note however, that the rooms in the "old" section of the Bucuti are not nearly as nice as the new Tara Suites. If staying at the Bucuti, we highly recommend staying in one of the suites.

Food at the Pirates Nest, the hotel's restaurant, was good, but nothing special. We had a honeymoon dinner on the beach, which was very nice and romantic. Other than that, we ate a couple lunches and breakfasts there, and the food was defintitely good enough to take advantage of the convenience of eating there. As far as service on the beach, the Bucuti uses a system where you stick a red flag in the sand where you are sitting to indicate you want food or drink, and a waiter comes to take your order. We utilized this feature several times, and the longest we ever waited was about 10 minutes, which was perfectly fine with us considering that we never had to get out of our chairs. If you chose not to eat at breakfast/lunch at the Bucuti there is a little bagel shop, Dushii Bagels, just a short walk down the road. We also went to the grocery store and bought some food to take advantage of the kitchen in the suite.

Overall, we were extremely happy with everything at the Bucuti. If you want a party atmosphere, with crowded beaches and big pools, Bucuti is not what you are looking for. But if you are looking for a romantic vacation, with an opportunity to enjoy the Island's most beautiful beach, you HAVE to go to the Tara Suites at the Bucuti!!!!

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Harrisburg, Pa.
12
Reviewed September 27, 2004

After reading all of the wonderful reviews we decided to stay at Bucuti in the new Tara Suites. The beach is fantastic. The water was so clean it was almost scary. The Tara Suite rooms are very nice. However, almost everything else about Bucuti was a hugh disappointment. The service at every level was bad. The restaurant food was Ok but service so slow we stopped eating there. The hotel next door, I think it was the Divi, was excellent. The staff at Bucuti was no where to be found on the two occasions we needed help. The check in was long even after I took advantage of the on line check in before we left. We did not get any welcome drink as advertised. We got there at 4pm after traveling since 4am only to find that there is no food service until 6pm. The bartender would wait on any young lady and studiously ignore anyone over 40. Beach service was next to impossible to get. We also got the feeling that the staff of Bucuti is not crazy about Americans. They do love our money.

We loved Aruba and plan to go back but not to Bucuti.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 23, 2004

We returned last night from a week (9/16-9/23) in the Tara Suites at Bucuti. In a word, superb.

The room was wonderful, the view simply awesome. At the Tara only check-in we were advised that as the building was new they needed to alleviate humidity from the moisture emitting from the building materials. We were asked to keep all lights on when we were out of the room, a very "ungreen" request from this very "green" hotel. And yes, there was a dehumidifier in the room, but it was not huge, and we had absolutely no problems with mold, humidity, smell or anything else. We slept very well, and enjoyed just staying in the room for a respite from the heat. No tradewinds just now due to all the tropical storms. Having the small refrigerator, microwave, sink and accompanying glasses, dishes and silverware is a very nice amenity. I guarantee anyone that if you have an issue with your room (or anything), all one needs to do is mention it and the problem will be resolved immediately, if at all possible. Why would you NOT mention it?

The beach is as fine as you will ever experience. The water is wonderfully calm and clear, a nice sand bottom (no coral or such on the bottom to scrape your feet), the beach itself so huge, as the hotel is so small, that you can walk right to a hut at any time of day, many times with no-one else within 50 yards of you. Be advised, this is a European hotel, and on any given day a few ladies were sunbathing topless, but in a very normal and tasteful fashion. This is not Club Med or Sandals, this is a class property.

Our only less than stellar comment is about the Bucuti food. The lunch menu is limited, generic, and frankly the food not all that appealing. All dining, whether on the deck or in the Pirate's Nest, is al fresco, and after a full day of soaking up Aruba sunshine, we found we wanted the comfort of air conditioning within which to enjoy our meals. The beach dining experience is very nice, the food was good. DO NOT let this keep you away from Bucuti. There are cafes and other places to grab lunch within a 2 minute walk of Bucuti (even a Subway>>>). Try the bagel stand for pestachi (sp?), an Aruban treat. There are many fine places to eat supper, all an $8.00 or less cab ride away, two just next door at Manchebo and Costa Linda.

This is a place for adults who both want and know how to entertain themselves, and to largely do it alone. If you want the party scene, stay in the High Rise area. There were no children at Bucuti at all during our stay. The pool is Holiday Inn, the hot tub superfluous, but frankly we never even thought about visiting either, and for the most part neither did anyone else. Bucuti is about relaxation, personal service, the beach, and either kindling, or as my bride of 20 years and I just did on our anniversary, rekindling the spark of romance. Of all the places we have stayed all over the world, Bucuti ranks first.

  • Stayed: September 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank WarHokie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
New Orleans, Louisiana
18
Reviewed September 19, 2004

Just returned from a wonderful Sep 12-19 honeymoon at Tara Suites. First the bad. The newly constructed Tara Suites wing suffers from severe humidity problems and lack of air flow which results in mold growth. This issue has become more common in the States, but I'm not sure how seriously it is being taken at Bucuti. I knew something was wrong when we entered our room (champagne in hand) and there was a dehumidifier the size of a dorm room refrigerator. The room was hot and sticky (I am not whining -- I live in New Orleans so I live with this stuff) and had an obvious stench. We ended up buying incense and scented candles (from King Hong, where they also have a good selection of pate, cheese and everything else we have in the States) to mask the smell. Two illustrations -- one night my wife asked whether I spilled my dink on the floor because the tile was so wet (I hadn't that time); in another instance we had to wash clothes because mold literally started growing on anything damp.

Did we complain? No. I guess we could have, but the beach got in the way.

Although the decor of the rooms is fabulous, Bucuti is not about the hotel or the service. Bucuti is about the most relaxing time you may ever have with your significant other. Bucuti is about laying on the beach, looking at the endless ocean and hearing the waves. Think Corona commercials. Really. There were no children to speak of. The happy hour steel drummer was appropriately low key. No one pushed timeshares, got drunk and belligerent, or really bothered any one else. Of significance is what I noticed on the various outings we had -- couples at other resorts seemed to have forged relationships with other couples they met at their hotel. The guys started talking sports, the women shopping. The couple were totally distracted from one another. Bucuti's magic, on the other hand, is so awe inspiring that I would never have thought of striking up a conversation with anyone other than my wife, made even more beautiful by the perceived solitude of Bucuti.

Despite the room issues, the fact that I had difficulty sleeping due to air I had to chew and ice skated at night on my floor, I am tempted to rate the experience a 10. That must speak volumes. If the room issues are properly addressed Bucuti will be way off of the charts.

Quick notes -- we did the AGA dine around plan which worked out ok, but most of the good restaurants are a cab ride away. Red Sail Sports was suspect, De Palm Tours was great. There does seem to be a certain expectation that the tour guests are familiar with whatever adventutres they try -- first timers will not find much if any instruction on the basics of snorkeling or horseback riding. Stay away from the downtown tourist traps (Carlos N Charlies, etc). We went our last night and it almost ruined our mood. Aruba is extremely elegant if you stay off of the beaten path. Pago Pago, The French Steak Knife, Chez Mathilde, Amazonia, L.G. Smith Steakhouse offered up some of the best meals we've had, including meals in the Big Easy. Sunset sails of any type are a must. The Spa is good, but you have to walk next door to the new spa on the beach at Manchebo. More Corona commercials. Also, someone posted that you should bring an insulated cooler -- great idea for the beach, although there is a refrigerator and microwave in the room next to the dehumidifier. We went to the grocery early and picked up several bottles of champagne, OJ, pate, etc. Every moring was a beautiful present, and every sunset devine.

Again, there were some issues with the facilities, but if you understand why you're at Bucuti - to be, stay and/or fall in love - it will be background noise drowned out by the ocean...

  • Stayed: September 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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