The Aruba Grand is Beautiful
My husband and I stayed at the Aruba Grand for 7 nights for our honeymoon from Sept. 5, 2004-Sept. 12, 2004. Everything about our stay was wonderful. The rooms were clean and comfy and the service was awesome. The beach was not crowded at all. We were always able to find a spot on the beach even if was after lunch time. We also noticed that the Aruba Grand has a lot more beach than the other resorts. I highly suggest a deluxe oceanview room because the view is breathtaking. We really enjoyed the separate comfort controls of the bed as well. The hotel staff were very friendly. The only negative part of the trip was the stormy weather we received from Hurricane Ivan but it didn't ruin our trip at all. We look forward to visiting the Aruba Grand in the future!!
Honeymoon at the Aruba Grand
My wife and I spent our honeymoon at the Aruba Grand, Sept 19-26. We had none of the major problems that other reviewers seem to have had. Our room was perfect (7th floor Oceanfront Deluxe), always cleaned promptly, all amenities in the room worked perfectly, and the view was beautiful; the staff was always helpful, courteous and friendly; we had NO problems getting towels, huts or chairs on the beach at any time of day. The only negatives we experienced were the spotty Internet service (wireless was down all week, and the two PCs in the lobby didn't work all the time) and the hotel restaurant (we found better deals elsewhere on the island). High rollers won't enjoy the casino, but that wasn't a problem for us. There may not be much nightlife at the Aruba Grand, but it's a short walk to other hotels, and the bus to downtown is frequent and cheap. The week we were there, we were contacted ONCE by the hotel about timeshares; walking along the sidewalks brought a few other timeshare hawkers but a simple "no thanks" is enough to dismiss them.
All in all, I would stay at the Aruba Grand again. It may not be a 5-star, but I left satisfied.
Very Nice Stay
I have stayed at some Marriott and Hilton resorts in other areas including Hawaii. The Aruba Grand in some ways lives up to that experience but in other areas seems to fall short.
- Room... My wife and I stayed on the 7th floor. The room was extremely nice. It was probably nicer/as nice as any I have stayed in. Apparently the 7th/8th floors have been recently remodeled.
- Friendly Workers ... I found all the workers to be very friendly and helpful... we even had a nightly turn down service in our room... much like they do on cruises
- Beach ... The Aruba Grand beach was never crowded
- Exercise Room ... Looked to be brand new and had lots of nice equipment only downside was that it closed at 4PM.
- Wireless Network... Their is actually a wireless network that is at the Aruba Grand... I could see it in the Lobby... in my 7th Floor room... and even at the Pool.... problem... it wasn't working while I was there ... the desk told me that they were having problems with it and couldn't figure out what was wrong ... They do have 2 computers with Internet Access in the lobby area you have to pay to use. I found a free wireless network between the Radisson and Allegro to check my email on.
- Pool area... not nearly as nice as the other hotels... Not hot tub/jacuzzi that I could find. This area hasn't been upgraded like much of the rest of the hotel
- Smoking.... the 7th floor and much of the hotel seems to permit smoking... this can be annoying
- Room Availability... We had requested a king room... our first night they only had a double available..
The Aruba Grand aspires to be a top-notch resort but falls slightly short. It is clear that they have spent alot of money upgrading various parts of the hotel but others they haven't done yet. For the money you get a good deal. I was satisfied with my stay but not over-awed. I would definitely recommend that you get one of the redone rooms if you stay at the hotel.
This is our first trip to Aruba and we had a marvelous experience. We started off at the hotel with the wrong room but management fixed the problem and gave us 2 complmentary dinners with drinks in the hotels restaurant. Not only were they superb but the view while dinning is just breathtaking. The entire wait staff is attentive, warm and friendly. The Aruba Grand, elegant, convienent to everything and just a perfect vacation.Great views.
A five star hotel it is not. A great, relaxing place for a honeymoon it is. If you are looking for non-stop entertainment, stay at another hotel. If you are looking for a nice, quiet beach with plenty of room and privacy, this place is for you. We were in a Lanai suite, just inches from the beach. The service and staff was nice. You have to remember you are not in the US, the environment is much more "layed back." All and all I would definetly go back to Aruba, and have no issue's staying at the Aruba Grand.
Unbelievable. I can't understand why other people had bad reviews of this place. When we came, it was right after Hurricane Ivan had rained on the island, and so the Mill Resort's guests were staying at the Aruba Grand Beach Resort. SO, when we arrived at the AGBR they (since we had booked with them) bumped us up to the 8th floor, free, to one of the best rooms.
The beach in front of the AGBR, now that the Holiday Inn's beach is destroyed, is the best on Palm Beach. Tiki huts galore...no getting up at 6am to snag one -- usually you can get one if you are out there by 10am. Yeah, they allow smoking in the lounge/bar area (so it kind of has a residual smell), but whoT* cares? All rooms are perpendicular to the beach, meaning when you go out on your balcony you turn and voila -- there's the beach.
It's got a nice location, a bus stop just a few feet away, it's next door to the Wyndham which has amazing restaurants in its lobby, and a beautiful beach. Why pay more when you can get this? OH, and could I mention that their desk people are among the most polite people I've experienced?
Color me satisfied. Book it.
It Never Rains In Aruba
There are some fairly good reviews on Trip Advisor about this hotel so maybe my experience was out of the ordinary but if you want to stay in a dirty, cheap, smokey hotel right on the beach in Aruba then this is your place. Keep in mind during our stay hurricane Ivan drifted through but in my opinion the very worst day in Aruba is leaps and bounds above the best day at home. We stayed in one of the Lanai units away from the main building until they moved us to an 8th floor room during the storm. I normally don't stay in rooms as filthy as the lanai room was but didn't plan on being in the room much anyway. Houskeeping was spotty at best, every two or three days whether we needed it or not. Had to call to get towels and was told they'd be right there...they never came so we just used the robes that were in the room instead. Had to ask for the tv remote control, toilet doesn't flush, fridge doesn't cool, bed frame was broken and leaned to one side and you'll need to wipe your feet when going out of the room the carpet was so beyond filthy, oh and the phone in the room is just for display as you cant really call anyone with it and they never send you your messages, no matter how serious they are. There really isn't enough room here for a complete review and I will not bag on the hotel for problems brought on do to the storm as they simply aren't prepared for anything of that magnitude.
Our second room was very nice for the night we stayed in it, during the rain the roof began leaking, luckily it was right in the middle of my bed so I moved the bed and we listened to the drip all night. We moved back to our original room the next day. Thank goodness all I wanted to do was relax under a hut on the beach because this was truly the only good thing I found about the whole resort. They really seem to rely on the fact that their beach is bigger and less crowded than all the good hotels on either side of them. I guess you cant have everything. In summary, I would return to Aruba tommorow if possible but never to the Aruba Grand, I travel as much as possible so this certainly was not my first trip to Aruba nor will it be my last so I try and base my review on things most folks would find helpful. If money is an issue try them out just stay away from the lanai units. Don't eat in this resort under any circumstances...it should be illegal to charge that much for chicken....or to even call what they serve chicken for that matter. Walk out to the road and you'll find good places to eat or go next door...just stay away from their food, or take plenty of Pepto Bismol...you've been warned.
You have to go to Aruba once in your life though and even this resort can't spoil it...no matter how little the try..:-)
A relaxing and excellent hotel and experience
Reading the previous review, its hard to believe we stayed at the same hotel!!! We arrived just after Ivan and there were no problems.
We booked the Aruba Grand from 9/17 to 9/24 and after reading reviews here, booked the upgrade to the Oceanview Deluxe room via Expedia (we were on the 8th floor). The room was marvelous--clean and nicely appointed, and the bed was great with the firmness controls--I got my "rock hard slab" and hubby could keep his side softer as he prefers. We slept like hibernating bears every night. Bathroom was spacious and the marble was very nice. Housekeeping for us was very good--towels were often changed more than once a day if you set your "turn down" service light. Same with the trash, emptied with regular service and at turn down. The walk in closet was also nice.
The beach was excellent, far less crowded than at most of the other hotels, and even if all the chairs were occupied, Anthony and crew would get one for you and set it where you like and attach your towel firmly. The resort restaurant is so-so, I wouldn't recommend the all inclusive package with all the other better restaurants nearby. The pool bar is fun, serves a great cheeseburger and has the local beer, Balashi on draft, a savings over the little "pony" style bottles and cans you'll get elsewhere (8 oz. servings). The Dutch Pantry on site has sodas, cheese, crackers, snacks and other foods. We went to the small donut/bagel shop on the KaKoa beach bar across from the hotel on the beach for most breakfasts as their bagels and other options were yummy and inexpensive.
Overall, the resort is very low-key. Much of the clientele we were with were older than us (we're in our forties) so its not a party place, but there's plenty neaby if you want more excitement. Everyone we met, guest or employee was unfailingly nice. The resort has a clientele of regulars who return again, and again. Service was first rate, no complaints there. My only aggravation was spotty internet service. If you really need to check your e-mail seriously, bring your laptop. There is a timeshare option, they don't bug you about it, you're free to ask for info without having to go through the annoying presentation. You'll be left alone on the beach, no braiders, hucksters or tour salespeople, a real plus about Aruba.
Some other helpful hints:
1. If you're very young and require a party atmosphere, this resort is not for you--try the Allegro or the Wyndham or one of the others.
2. Recommended restaurants nearby: Gilligan's Beach Bar, Sunset Beach Bistro, Texas De Brazil, Aqua Grille and especially Sunset Grille at the Radisson, a truly lovely experience. KaKoa Beach Bar has great sandwiches and snacks, as does the Pool Bar at the Aruba Grand.
3. There are many shops and restaurants surrounding the other hotels within easy walking distance, as is the Butterfly Farm which is worth the trip. Bus fair into Oranjestad is a buck--don't bother waiting for the big public buses. There are "bus vans" that will beep at you on the main road for pickup, and they cost the same. They're perfectly safe and run a lot more often. We never used a single cab, which can be expensive.
4. One aggravation: Despite the Grand requesting that guests don't behave this way, many will immediately run out in the morning and tag the little thatch cabanas and beach chairs with their towels and beach bags, and then not use them for hours. If you want one of the shady areas, go early. This applies to any hotel on the beach. The pool is a great hangout for good coversation.
5. MOST IMPORTANT: Booking the upgrade room (Oceanview deluxe) on the 7th or 8th floor is a very good idea--it cost us a grand total of about 200 dollars more for the entire week and was worth every penny. They're remodeled and kept very well and housekeeping service is excellent, not to mention the great beds. You will get a coffeemaker in these rooms along with a fridge which worked quite nicely. I heard from other guests that some other rooms are old and tired and need work and they are remodeling. Between the Dutch Pantry downstairs and the French Market down the beach at the Divi Phoenix, you can get cheese, crackers, wine, beer sodas and anything else you might need at not too exorbitant prices.
7. The dive shop on the resort, Unique Sports of Aruba, is excellent. In our exhausted state, we packed all the dive and snorkel gear and forgot hubby's "C" cards. No problem, the Dive Shop contacted our dive shop for his info and he was diving the day after we arrived. Emmit and his crew are first rate, and you can snorkel on afternoon dives if you a non-diver like me (the Pedernales wreck is a great dive or snorkel).
ANOTHER GREAT IDEA: Order an "Aruba Plus" card from ---------------- This card cost us about $12.50 with shipping and saved us about $65 in discounts, including 10% off of my husband's dives.
Overall, we got a lot of bang for our buck--first class accomodations and service for moderate prices. We will definitely be back. Service, attitudes and atmosphere on Aruba is far superior to anything we've seen in the Caribbean save for the Caymans. It is indeed a "happy island" and Aruba Grand made us very happy, indeed!
Great for a honeymoon
We stayed for 6 nights at the end of august and early september as an all inclusive. The food was excellent and the service was great. It is a very quiet hotel. The rooms on the 8th floor were real nice. We will definitely be back.
Nice hotel, bad manager (Mr. Fazel)
When I booked this hotel I paid for an upgrade to the higher floors. This was not our first time in Aruba, and we were very much looking forward to the beautiful sunset from our hotel balcony.
The afternoon we checked in (5:00pm) we were given room #642 which faces the sunset. We soon discovered that the previous people had not yet moved out. The desk apologized and gave us room #627 away from the sunset and told us that they would move us to the other room in the morning. The next morning I went down to the front desk and spoke with the day manager Mr. Fazel; he told me that the Hotel had met its commitment of our upgrade to a higher floor. I told him that I learned from the chambermaid that room #642, and many others, were vacant; he would not even consider moving us to any other room on that side.
He just kept telling me that the Hotel had met its upgrade commitment.
I hope FAZEL's supervisor see this review.