What if I told you that you and your family could have a beautiful family vacation with guaranteed perfect beach weather of sunny and 85 degrees with almost no chance of rain the entire time? Sounds unbelievable doesn’t it? Welcome to Aruba my friends!!Aruba is a tiny Dutch island located in the Southern Caribbean off the coast of Venezuela. Arubas white sand beaches, cooling trade winds and gentle surf make the island enjoyable for people of all ages. Aruba is probably the safest island we have ever been to which one of the reasons why our family keeps returning. Once you decide Aruba is going to be your next vacation get-a-way you may hit a road block deciding where to stay if you have never been there.
Having vacationed in Aruba several times we had the pleasure of staying at the Aruba Holiday Inn Resort & Casino for the first time recently. I was a little reluctant with the name Holiday Inn and kept thinking cheap hotel. Ladies and gentlemen, I was wrong….please don’t tell my husband I said that.The Holiday Inn Resort is located on one of the best beaches in Aruba, Palm Beach. Palm Beach is popular with the tourists as it is the only area in Aruba to have high rise hotels. Directly across from The Holiday Inn is Aruba’s largest shopping mall, Palm Beach Plaza. Also within walking distance are many delicious restaurants if you choose to go off site to eat, a movie theater and a bowling ally as well as some local vendors set up in a little market in the evenings.
Let me start with the booking process. I was able to book our 10 day vacation via email with Eva. I had tons of questions and a couple requests while trying to book our winter blues get-a-way. Eva and her team were quick with their response emails and were able to fulfill every request I had asked for.
After arriving at the resort by taxi we were quickly greeted by bellmen that grabbed our bags for us. Rene asked us about our flight and helped us find our way to the front desk to check in. The check-in process was a breeze with Joseph. He gave us two complimentary water bottles, a map of the resort, explained where things were, that there were three sections of the resort, Peace & Harmony, Action & Play and the Chill & Mingle, and how to find our room. While walking to our room I could tell the staff of the Holiday Inn Resort & Casino took great pride in the resort as it was well maintained throughout and everyone was super friendly.We had two rooms that adjoined with an ocean view. As soon as I opened the door to our room I was impressed. Everything was very updated and clean.The crisp clean white bedding looked so inviting.
A 37″ lcd flat screen tv was in each room that stood on a large dresser with three drawers to store clothing during your stay and also a mini fridge. There was also a large closet with hangers, although not enough for everyone. There was also a safe in the closet to store your valuables. A small table with two chairs sat in the corner of each room should you choose to have room service. House keeping did a fantastic job cleaning up after us each day. The only thing that could be improved on is house keeping could be a little more generous with towels. On occasion we would only receive one or two wash towels with four people staying in each room.
During our 10 day stay at the resort we spent the majority of our time at one of three seaside pools located on the premises or at the beach. The pools were clean and well maintained and never crowded.The “chill & mingle” pool area of the Holiday Inn hosted several pool cabanas with two lounge chairs you could reserve that were perfect for shading you from the sun during the day. The only downfall of the lounge chairs is they are first come, first served and they were only at the chill and mingle pool. Luckily I have a husband that is an early riser and volunteered to go down every day by 5AM to put our towels out to reserve the hut. There were plenty of lounge chairs located around the pool for those wanting to bake all day in the sun. The white sand beach is just steps away and we had fun playing in the sand and splashing in the waves while watching the iguanas run around the resort. You were also able to reserve a palapa on the beach to give you shade during the day and those too had two lounge chairs. Reservations for these were done daily at one of the towel huts.There are several places located along palm beach to rent water toys. We were lucky enough there was one right in front of the Holiday Inn. We rented paddle boards…went parasailing…
and then the kids went tubing, which was a blast!The resort has four restaurants located throughout. Corals is centrally located and is a breakfast buffet (you can order a la carte if you choose) with a made to order omelet station, fresh fruit, pastries and cereal as well as other hot food items. Da Vinci is open for dinner and is a delicious Italian restaurant and is next to Corals. Oceanside Bar & Grill is a great place to grab a burger, fries and a cold drink while in your bathing suit while sitting on their patio by the ocean. Enjoy lunch or dinner at the open air Seabreeze restaurant offering fresh seafood, steak and pork chops. Or you could order off their delicious pizza menu. Your eyes and ears will be thanking you as you enjoy the view and sound of the Carribean at every table at the Seabreeze. The service at all four restaurants was impeccable and was always given with a smile. One of the great option Holiday Inn Resort offers is an all inclusive package if you choose to purchase it. You don’t have to leave the resort if you don’t want to. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and drinks (all non-alcoholic and most alcoholic) are included with the all inclusive package. One of the great things if you are traveling with children is at Holiday Inn kids under 12 eat free with a paying adult!!!
The Holiday Inn Resort offers a daily kids club program free to its guests. It had a daily activities schedule which included crafts, games and sports. We couldn’t convince our kids to stay though. Also located on premises is a fully equipped fitness center which is open 24 hours. We didn’t make use of that either as we were too busy enjoy the beach and pool.There are several stores located directly off the main lobby area offering anything from sunscreen, bags of chips, liquor, swimwear, shoes and much much more.
We were able to stay connected with family back home with the free wifi located throughout the resort. Log in was password protected for each room and worked well.
The Holiday Inn has several security officers on the premises 24/7 walking around making sure everything was ok. Even though I already knew Aruba to be a safe island it helped me stay at ease during our vacation. They are by the pools during the day making sure everyone follows the rules and walking around at wee hours in the morning making sure those that gambled the night away make it safely back to their rooms.
Although some probably think The Holiday Inn Resort & Casino is just a mid range hotel situated along one of the best beaches in Aruba I would have to disagree. The Holiday Inn Resort is just as high as the other five star resorts that sit along Palm Beach but for a fraction of the price.We are looking forward to our yearly return to One Happy Island and staying at our new resort, The Holiday Inn Resort & Casino. For more information on The Holiday Inn Resort & Casino please click here. Or by visiting their facebook page.