My husband and I stayed here 12 yrs ago and decided to go back with our 3yr old since this place was family friendly. We stayed 1/1 - 1/6. We had a 1bdr that had a king bed, bathroom off the hallway and double sleeper sofa in the living room with a full service kitchen. We went on a timeshare preview deal- 6dys/5nights. Since we knew the rooms had been updated we were expecting better than what we saw.
Positives: The room, 131A, did have a flat screen in the living and bedroom areas, granite counters in the bathroom and kitchen. We really enjoyed the fact the kitchen had a dishwasher, full-size fridge, convection/microwave oven, 4 gas-burner stove, garbage disposal and all of the kitchen ware you needed. The shower was large enough for 2 w/ a dual showerhead and seat. The shower also had a clothesline which came in very handy for drying swimsuits. We also had plenty of cabinet space in the vanity. In the bedroom, the closet was spacious, however not a lot of space for storing large luggage. Very nice patio to sit on. The room was cleaned well for the most part.
The pool is large with various places for kids and adults. There is a happy hour 4-6pm w/2for1 drinks at Pata bar.
Negatives: The check-in is a bit cumbersome and not informative of the various events going on. If you see a family checking in, you would think they would give us a list of the kid activities happening at the resort. We didn't find out all of the activities until we went by the Kid's center that afternoon. As we walked to our room, we saw paint peeling off walkways and banisters. The blgd/store right behind the lobby looks old and shuttered. If you are not going to put something in the bldg, dress it up with paint or something. We open the door to our room and immediately I notice the room is being cleaned. Why give us keys and send us to the room if it is not ready. We also notice the veryyyyy dated bedspread. After we got in the room, the bathroom did not have much space to hang towels. The hook on the back of the door was falling off. The mattress/boxspring seemed to be old.
The killer to getting even 3 1/2 stars was service, especially after we visited 2 other hotels in the highrise area. We approached the concierge and they sold us on the Island day $119 per person, our 3yr was free. While there, they told us about a couple of other things but did not give us any pamphlets. We went to the other hotels and they had information kiosks and pamphlet kiosks. I think instead of having Bluegreen people as the concierge they need to have a true concierge. We happened across a brochure at another hotel on our 4th day that had all sorts of information and activites in it. Make sure you get the Aruba activity brochure from the airport or some other hotel.
The service a the Grill was absolutely horrible. Do NOT go there with a hungry child. We ordered the chicken fingers and fries and it took all of 17 minutes to get service and then another 25 minutes to get our food. It appeared as if no one really know who had which tables. So we decided to try it again after being unsuccessful at getting into Las Ramblas. My husband order a hamburger (well done) no cheese and I ordered a Cesar Salad. My salad came with so much dressing on it you barely could see the lettuce. The hamburger had cheese on it and the next one was not well done. This was after we waited 40 minutes for service and food. I will say that service at Pata bar is very good- Go Figure. What really brought the rating dow was visiting other resorts Marriott and Radisson. Marriott the grounds are lush, they have a lazy tube river. Radisson has lush grounds and open air lobby really nice on point staff.
I didn't purchase the wifi after hearing from various people that the signal was bad and some places not at all. Don't bother with the free computers in the upstairs lobby either, they are so terribly slow that your 15 minutes will be up before you can finish a task. Personally, I did not find the lack of wifi/internet a problem. No phone, computer, Ipad- love checking out of the electronic scene.
As others have said you do need to save your chairs and umbrella at the pool by 8am or you will be in the sun. At the beach, you can still get a palapa at 9am. If you get there after 2pm, you can find one too.
If you plan on cooking go to Ling and Sons, $8 taxi, to buy your groceries. Much better selection and cheaper than Superfoods. Superfoods is geared more toward Eastern European, not much selection. To give you some idea of price, bacon was $13
There is a Dunkin Donuts at Tropicana. Mangos has a pretty good breakfast for 2 adults and child it was $40 w/tip.
Would highly recommend the Flying Fishbone in San Nicolas
For those with kids the Kid's Center has beach toys, so no need to bring a bunch from home. There is also a small playground on sight. We also heard from the bellman that the Tropicana has a really good kid's pool area, although we did not go over there.
The bus is very convenient it picks up and drops off right behind the hotel at the beach. The cost is $2.30 one way. A taxi ride to/from airport is $25. I will be posting a the prices of various activities.
1bdr has plenty of space and clean, pool and beach are nice
Service poor, not much dining selection at the resort.
I feel like they need to work on the details since they have updated the rooms. Twelve years ago the service was amazing- now, not so much.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Full service, mixed use 449 room hotel/vacation ownership casino resort. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- La Cabana Beach And Racquet Club
- La Cabana Beach & Racquet Club Hotel Oranjestad
- La Cabana Beach Resort & Casino Aruba/Palm - Eagle Beach