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“Beautiful vacation on Bonaire”

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Plaza Resort Bonaire
Ranked #7 of 21 Hotels in Kralendijk
philadelphia
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Beautiful vacation on Bonaire”
Reviewed November 20, 2007

Just came back from beautiful week in Bonaire. One of the best vacations I had ever had. Scuba diving is the best ever. Snorkeling (surface interval) was very good too. For scuba diving, take my advise, South side. Don't bother with North and the island, the as good as South side but a lot more hassles. You can dive the same dive site on the south all day long, sites are huge and you will never get bored.
Food - Casablanca is the best. If you are party of 3-4 ask for mixed grill. Enough meat for six adults easily. Breakfast - french place in downtown. Ask to bring eggs first and coffee the last. They don't know the sequence. The hotel's breakfast buffet is very nice too.
Temperature : sunny all day long, sun is above your head all day long - near equator. Bring lots of sun lotion and use it. Cover yourself even in the water. Even in November sun is very active.
Hotel: we stayed in Plaza Resort in Villa. Villas are the way to go.
We stayed in two bedroom one, two huge bedrooms, two bathrooms and large leaving room / full kitchen. Service is great.
Villas have problem with pluming. My bath tub was leaking, had to use second bath tab all the time. They offered us another villa, but new one had very loud air conditioners in the bedroom. Decided to take turns taking showers rather than not sleep.
But hotel itself is very nice. Pluming did not spoil.
People are very nice, you'll have a good time there.
Beaches: the island does not have beautiful beaches like Mexico or Dominican Republic. That's price you pay for beautiful reefs close to the shore for shore diving. Have a rubber shoes to get in and out of the water. But once you are in the water you are in paradise, the water is extra salty, warm and as clear as I don't know what. Have some bread with you and you'll be surrounded by fish in a minute.
In few word : you will enjoy it, as to hotel it seems to be the best on the island. If you want to spend more money rent a villa (I mean one of the beautiful houses on the North side, six bedroom villas).
But all considered, Plaza is the best option for reasonable budget.
Enjoy.

  • Liked — roomy
  • Disliked — pluming problems
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
6 Thank m_m507
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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york pa
Level Contributor
76 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 168 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2007

the ads say there is a casino and while that may be true, it isnt open...the ads say there is a pool bar and while there is a pool bar in the pool it isnt open..the bugs eat you alive even with bug spray on.. the restaurants are super expensive and the food is not good at all compared to the U.S. there is nothing to do but dive..the place was filthy the week we went..i dont know if it is always like that but it was when i was there..the pool was never clear and there were no pool floats at all..most everyone spoke dutch or papieamento at this resort, but at the buddy dive, most people spoke english..even though there was over 100 dive sites, you soon realized that they all looked the same and you might as well have stayed close to your resort and saved driving..
on the good side, the diving is as good as it gets for both the freedom and life aquatic, but for any other measure, this is not the place to go for vacation as it is overly expensive, boring to the point that you would put a gun in your mouth, the food is terrible and the variety stinks, the natives are rude,and the island is dirty.
if i did go back i would choose buddy dive for several different reasons, but i probably would not go back....and to compare, i have been to excellence resort in cancun, riu palace in cancun, hotel cozumel and the iberostar in cozumel and have been very happy with all of those resorts, so please do not think i am hard to please..i only want you others to know that the ads for this place must be old as it does not even come close to the written or pictorial portayal...doug

  • Liked — very attentive staff
  • Disliked — dirty grounds and pool
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank dougthebarber
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
nashville tn
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2007

Just returned from a week at the Plaza Resort. If your standards for hotel accommodations are low, then you will have a ball. We found the facilities to be shabby (Friday night with no electricity and the staff refusing to take our calls was interesting...never thought I would use my dive light to find my way around the hotel) and the staff COMPLETELY unhelpful. If you like to be ignored by the front desk or the bar staff, this is your place.

Bonaire itself if quiet and slow. If you want topside activities, this is not the place for you. The diving is well above average and the opportunity to set your own pace due to the accessibility of shore diving is positive, but I don't think it outweighed the two days lost in travel.

I probably won't go back to Bonaire. But its worth going once...just don't stay at the Plaza Resort if you expect a pleasant hotel experience. Try out Buddy Dive Resort...all the locals said is much better.

  • Liked — Dive Center
  • Disliked — Staff
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank jpfeiffer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Kralendijk hotels

Massachusetts
Level Contributor
32 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2007

Just back from 7nights 8 days at the Plaza. Too bad that you give up two days entirely for travel. Arrived at 10:30 PM 10/2 left at 5:30 AM 10/9. The diving was spectacular and Toucan Diving could not have been more helpful to a couple of rookies. The resort is showing signs of aging and was renovating during our visit and we had to ask for a room change due to noise. They were accomodating and upgraded us to a grand suite however this suite was about 100 yards from the airport runway. Oh well there were only a few flights. Both suites were immaculate which cannot be said for the walkways and Caribbean Point restaurant for breakfast. The restaurant was not very clean especially the fabric chairs and the breakfast buffet was like a cafeteria both in appearance and food appeal. For the daily charge of $15.00 each it was a disappointment. The beach bar was great try a Tosti for lunch. We ate at some wonderful restaurants, Richard's, Cactus Blue, The Brasserie, City Side Grill and make sure you get some Lover's Ice Cream.
Look for Dive Packages as without it can get pricey!

  • Liked — Spotless suites, wonderful Dive shop
  • Disliked — Level of cleanliness outside the suites, airport noise
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Globe58Trotter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ohio
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 8, 2007

Contrary to some of these reviews the place treated my wife and I well. Nice grounds and staff and the diving was unbelievable.

Stayed July 2007
Helpful?
1 Thank willp1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GEORGIA
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed June 18, 2007

We just returned from a week's vacation to the Plaza Resort Bonaire. The only problem with the vacation was that we had to come back home. The hotel is a destination within itself, sitting on 12 beautifully landscaped acres. It was a little bit of a walk from one end to the other, but it was not a problem at all. We stayed in an Oceanview Grand Suite, but after looking at the property, I believe that any of the rooms would have a beautiful view (lagoon or ocean).

The beach at the Plaza looks like a postcard setting with large coconut trees and thatch umbrellas to get a break from the sun, and beautiful white sand. The shore diving couldn't be easier, and the house reef (Eighteenth Palm) was just beautiful. We also had a rental truck so we could do other shore dives. I would highly recommend getting the book, "Bonaire Shore Diving Made Easy" ---. It was a valuable reference, and made the trip even better. We completed our Nitrox certification and our Advanced Open Water certification with Toucan Diving while we were there. As the saying goes, "It's SO easy!".

The people at Plaza Resort Bonaire and Toucan Diving were absolutely wonderful. Everything was nice, but the people there really made the trip exceptional. They treated us like we were family, and I cried when we were saying goodbye to everyone! We booked our vacation through bonairepros.com, and it was the best vacation we have ever had. I am counting the days until next year's trip.

Helpful?
6 Thank DIXIE B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Texas
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed May 27, 2007

This is our second visit to Bonaire in less than a year. If staying in a Plaza Villa, requests an ocean view. There are only a couple Villas that have a partial view of the ocean. Other wise, you will be facing the airport or hotel rooms across the water way that leads to Toucan diving operation. We stayed at Divi Flamingo last year and this is my comparison:

Plaza and Toucan Diving:
Small dives lockers, 1/3 size of Divi, solid floor with no drainage. You must share this locker and it barely holds 2 people’s gear, minus the wet suites.
You have to hang your wet suites along side everyone else’s, not under lock and key. No way they can dry between dives because of tight fit. We took ours back to the room everyday.
They will pack 13 divers on one boat, only one way off and on boat. Can take forever to get everyone into the water to go diving.
Dive shop is located a good walking distance from Villas. If you select to drive from the Villas to dive shop, you must exit the Villa parking lot and drive a couple of miles around other hotels and reenter the resort through another security gate.
The airport traffic noise woke me up on numerous occasions. One plane land’s in the middle of the night and another early in the morning.
You have to rent an in-room safe key. Some people said they ran out of locks.
We had to wait until 2 PM to check-into our room although the front desk said it would be 12 noon. We arrived at 5 AM. Front desk has a lot to learn about customer service.
The upside to Plaza is the one bedroom Villa is large. Twice as large as the rooms at Divi. Great balcony.
Both hotels have great satellite TV. You can keep up w/ world news and programs, no FOX network.

Divi:
Full length lockers, well ventilated. You bring your own lock.
Dive shop is next to one-bedroom apartments.
Big pontoon boat with 6 areas to enter the water from. You do not have to wait for fellow divers to enter the water.
GREAT location. Near downtown.
Both hotels have road traffic noise. Divi has no airport noise.
The kitchen has a blender for those all-important frozen drinks, but small. The room can collect a kitchen odor. Bring some air freshener.
At check-in they gave us a hotel room to hang out in until our apartment was ready.
The downside to Divi is the place is getting old. The apartments are small.

If we return to Bonaire, we will look into renting a house. See Sunbelt Reality listing and visit bonairetalk web site.
Carib Inn is a good place for any repairs.
Warehouse Grocery has a better supply but the bread selection was better at grocery store in town.

Do pay the extra money and hire a dive master to dive the Salt Pier, it’s worth it. We were told they have arrested divers who dive it on their own. USA demands a secure port. We did see the authorities checking. You take your chances.

The only restaurant we have ever returned to on Bonaire is RumRunners. The setting is wonderful, the food is OK. Have a bottle of wine and a pizza (I like the chicken pizza, it is different). If I’m on an island I want to eat where I can see the ocean. Cactus Blue, Casablanca… they have good food but, I can get good food and street noise in any USA restaurant. I’m on Bonaire for the ocean sun sets.

  • Stayed May 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
6 Thank scubanir
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Plaza Resort Bonaire

Property: Plaza Resort Bonaire
Address: J.A. Abraham Blvd 80, Kralendijk, Bonaire
Location: Caribbean > Bonaire > Kralendijk
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Kralendijk
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Kralendijk
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Kralendijk
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Plaza Resort Bonaire 3.5*
Number of rooms: 126
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoyment without limits, an all-inclusive vacation at Plaza Beach Resort Bonaire. This resort offers 126 spacious air conditioned oversized Suites, both Junior Suites and Grand Suites located either next to the Caribbean Sea or next to the marina laguna. Everything is included: from a delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner buffet in our restaurant with sea view to water sport activities, a diving school and a cozy beach bar. With the best beach on Bonaire and a beautiful swimming pool, there is nothing that will stop you from having a vacation to always remember. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Plaza Resort Bonaire Hotel Kralendijk
Plaza Hotel Bonaire
Plaza Hotel Kralendijk
Plaza Resort Bonaire Kralendijk

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