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Reviewed 10 November 2012

This hotel has excellent service and offers more options than most all inclusives. The rooms are average and the bathrooms need updating but who spends much time in their room when there is a private island with a shuttle boat that comes into the hotel lobby.The food is top notch with lots of seafood included in the all inclusive as well as the steak house.

My only issue is there are limited options if you are vegetarian. The soup and tomatoe sauces are beef stock based. I had to eat out a couple of nights but there are lots of salad and fruit. Overall a great location, clean with great service

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Bobolas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 November 2012

The resort is OK; not very big and with very little activities. The beaches on the island are great and the restaurant on the island comes in very handy. I suggest all inclusive option since the food is so great and is the only option on the island. Overall good vacation but more internment and activities would be nice.

Room Tip: Ocean View suits have two rooms for comfortable quit sleep and nice ocean views
  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Andrey B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 November 2012

Check-in and check-out at the Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino (the suites) can be very time-consuming. Three busses with (apparently time-share) guests arrived just prior to our arrival, causing a delay of approx 45 minutes at check-in. No elite check-in at this hotel, nor elite check-out. On top of that a suite was assigned which was already occupied, forcing another trip to the front desk. Be prepared and be on time!

During our stay we experienced water leakage from the ceiling of our bathroom, including water dripping from the overhead lights. Being afraid this might cause a short circuit (I once experienced a hotel fire and it was not a very nice experience), I asked maintenance to fix the problem. It took two phone calls and one personal visit to the front desk before an engineer arrived (after approx 1 hour). The water drain of the airco unit was clogged, and a vacuum cleaner solved the problem. According to the engineer this was a common problem throughout the hotel. However, water leaked onto a ceiling tile where a terminal block of the lighting was located, potentially causing a short circuit (photo’s available). The engineer explained that this was no problem since the automatic fuse would cut out. This approach did cause some furrowed eyebrows on my part, especially since he insisted on switching off the power of the lighting before tile removal. If someone unfamiliar with the problem would have decided to remove the tile one can only hope the automatic fuse would indeed cut out.

The hotel advertises the normal suite sleeps 4 people. The couch that folds into a sleeper bed is not suitable for normal size adults (springs completely worn out, resting on the framework). My 11-year old daughter was able to sleep in it, but I would not have been able to get a good night’s rest in this ‘bed’.

Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino front desk staff attitude varied. Whilst the majority of staff is still very friendly and helpful, unfortunately an unusual number of staff appeared disinterested (chewing gum, consistently providing inaccurate information, disinterested, etc.).

Housekeeping is very good: friendly, efficient, and clean. Rollaway beds were brought and made promptly.

The island is still magnificent: gorgeous beaches, very well organized, including the transport to and from the hotel. Very nice staff (maybe a bit ‘hungry for tips’, while a 15% service charge is already included in the bill). The only possible comment one might have is that the beds are slightly sagged, but that’s about it. All in all: Very good.

Breakfast was enjoyed at the Renaissance Marina Hotel across the street. An absolute delight: good food, friendly staff, and an absolute joy to start your day. In one word: excellent!

During the last day of our visit the warm water system was malfunctioning throughout the entire hotel. Despite frequent promises of the problem being fixed ‘very soon’, there was no warm water the entire day until our checkout (finally at about half past two). We therefore had to use a cold shower before commencing our long return flight.

I asked for a late checkout as advertised and regularly provided by Marriott (for elite members). I was informed that this was not possible due to hotel bookings (the hotel was full and room was planned for another guest). It was possible however to book a half-day room use in a different room ($138). Having no alternative (children) I reluctantly accepted the offer. IMHO offering a half-day room use for a regular late checkout is not up to the Marriott standards of implementing an advertised late checkout policy. No warm water in this room as well .. a very expensive 2.5 hours.

I do not know whether the problems mentioned are time-share related, but the combination of technical issues, check-in/check-out problems, and front desk staff attitude forces tends me to advise against purchasing a time-share at the Renaissance Ocean Suites.
As a regular hotel guest, I would certainly advise against staying at the Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino and would advise to stay at the Renaissance Aruba Marina just across the street instead. I stayed there numerous times for business and have never once had a negative experience.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank Robennoor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 November 2012

There was no water in the rooms for almost 24 hours one night! It was only fixed the following day when my wife finally reached the GM’s assistant. She was promised that it would be fixed and that the GM would meet her for coffee to discuss the water issue as well as the following problem.

The staff member that planed the wedding we attended for our friends was ridiculously indifferent perhaps even incompetent and was on the edge of being cruel! In the first few days leading up to the wedding she was unavailable. And, then at the wedding she delayed the wedding for no apparent reason, telling the Groom that the Bride was not there, when in fact she was. They were slow to set things up, and grumbled and shifted blame to the customers for their slowness. Her delay caused the Bride and Groom to have to finish their wedding photos on another day, which cost them more for having to rehire the photographer. Personally I witnessed the most audacious thing I have ever seen, or heard of, out of the wedding planner. When my wife complained that she was being served the wrong food at the reception, the wedding planner went and pulled the Groom away from his bride, brought him to our table and proceed to scold him like a child in front of his guest! Saying, that it was his fault that the order was messed up. To top the night off the wedding planner left the wedding an hour earlier than planned so that she could attend a costume party! Later, my wife wrote a review here on Trip advisor about the hotel and the wedding planner. The following morning the wedding planner went to the groom to ask, “Who my wife was” by name. And, then made the groom feel like he was being strong-armed to stop his guest from complaining anymore. We know this because he asked us to please stop writing complaints until all the things left over from the wedding were done and they no longer need the planner.

Also, the GM never met with my wife. Even after she wrote her complaint on trip advisor and asked the GM's assist for the promised meeting over coffee to discuss this strong-arm stunt the wedding planner pulled with the groom as well as other short comings. Over all there were some bright spots with hotel staff (mainly the bar staff), but Management really needs to take a long hard look at the GM and the wedding planer and staff in general. I would never recommend this hotel for a wedding; at best it is only good for the kind of vacation where one does not ask much of anything of the staff.

  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Zachary W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 November 2012

I had a really good experience in Aruba but when I arrived I was shocked at what the hotel was, as were many of the other people who arrived on the plane with me. Reading the ads and the web site it sounded like the Renaissance resort was 2 buildings, an adult oriented (marina) and a family oriented (ocean view), on the same property. Actually there is a nice resort (the family one) with palm trees, pools, and a man made lagoon which is really quite nice, the rooms were one bedroom suites with a kitchenette. About 3 blocks away is the Adult building which is really just a nice, but standard, hotel such as you'd find in any city attached to a shopping mall and casino - small rooms, french (unusable) balconies, fridge didn't work, 1 chair, not enough storage, view of a parking lot/construction site. We were so disappointed! After 2 nights I paid a $420 upgrade and moved to the family building and the vacation was fine from then on. One note, there could not have been more than 10 kids in at the family resort probably to do with the time of year.

We were on the all inclusive option which worked well for us, the food was really quite above adverage, there are 6 restaurant/cafe spots, 4 in the adult/marina hotel and 2 at the family/ocean resort. Oddly, something I haven't seen before, you gave the waiter or bar tender your room key and after the meal you signed off a recipt (tip included) and it was all free. Typically the receipts added up to 2 to 3 hunder dollars each day which gives you some idea how much extra not being on the meal plan would cost. One thing I did note was that the bar tenders at the pool bar "Sole" routinely included more drinks on my bar bill than I drank sometimes extra rounds and sometimes different drinks entirely. It didn't cost me anything but after the 5th or 6th time it happens you know there's some sort of scam happening that the management should take a look at.

Service at the hotel was really quite good. The couple things I needed (lost key, room move, check in/out, taxis) were taken care of at once with no hassles at all.

The hotel has a private island that is a 5 minute boat ride away that's really quite nice too. It also has a restaurant and two beaches. The boat trip was fun and it provided more beach and swimming options. Also, there were plenty of chairs on the all beaches, there was never any problem find the perfect spot either in the sun or in the shade. No one was staking out all the good chairs at 7 in the morning because there was no need.

The Hotels are right in town so there's plenty of shopping within a few blocks. The real Aruba award winning beaches are about 4km down the road - what they call the high rise hotels. That's where you'll find miles of really great beachs and all the name brand hotel options.

In summary, I enjoyed my stay there and I think I got great value for my money. If you go, I suggest you book the ocean view (family resort) unless you really love casinos (and if you do I don't know why you're going to Aruba since the inside of a casino is the same everywhere you go). The room was clean, the food was great, the view was good, the staff were friendly,

Room Tip: Ocean view, the higher the floor the better.
  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled with friends
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3  Thank JohnGfromVanc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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