My husband and I just returned from our weeklong honeymoon in Curacao and had a blast! The Marriot, as the reviews say, was great and by far is the only place I would stay on the island (it is only one of two high-end resorts it seems).
The staff was very accommodating, nice and welcoming - we had no problems with the staff at all. The property itself is beautiful - just like the pictures on the web site. We were offered an upgrade to a beachfront room for $75/nt and it was well worth it. Rooms were typical Caribbean decor, could be updated, but we had no complaints about anything being dirty or poorly maintained. The beach is rocky only in one area, but we managed to swim just fine on other parts of the beach and the snorkeling there was great, but bring your own equipment because renting can add up and the snorkeling is that great that you'll want to do it more than once or twice. Just down from the Marriott is a path that takes you to the Hilton (which looked like a DUMP), but the snorkeling off that area was awesome too!
We were also very impressed with the food at the Marriott. For hotel food, the burgers, salads and sushi we had while we were on property were very good. The food around the island was also very good, however, there were a few places I wanted to drive to for dinner but it is very difficult to get around the island at night (no street signs) so I am disappointed we were not able to try a few places I had on my list. We dined at the Governor downtown which was very good and decently priced for a nice dinner out and we tried a few cafes downtown, which were great and very cheap! We also tried Hook's Hut at the recommendation of an article I read in the NY Times and the food was the least impressive we had on the island. The environment is great, but the food was not that great and overpriced.
We rented a car for 4 days, which I highly recommend as taxi prices are very very expensive and some of the most fun we had was driving around and exploring. We had a wonderful time driving around the island finding beaches and different places we came across, although there is not much, it does take a sense of adventure to enjoy the island in my opinion. The island is not very touristy, which was a plus for us, and we were only two of a handful of American tourists which was very neat.
We visited Cas About a beach about 20 min from the Marriott, which I recommend, and took the day trip to Klein Curacao - a deserted island 1.5-hours off the coast. The island is literally deserted, not much shade or much of anything there, but the water was crystal clear., some of the clearest I have ever seen. I however, felt a day trip here was a bit too long for me, but my husband really enjoyed it.
Overall, I think the Marriott is THE place to stay in Curacao. We had a blast on the island and are anxious to see the Hyatt and Westin that we heard are being built. We'll go back, but not for 5-plus years or so.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Bay Casino are located directly on a private beach in Willemstad, Curacao. Spend your days basking in the sun at our resort pool or beach, or experiencing all history and adventure Curacao has to offer through our on site Tour and Car Rental desk. Once the sunsets, you will experience amazing dining by sea at our beachfront restaurant Seabreeze. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Hotel Willemstad
- Curacao Marriott Beach Resort And Emerald Casino
- Marriott Willemstad
- Curacao Marriott Beach Hotel Emerald
- Marriott Curacao
- Willemstad Marriott
- Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino Willemstad