Aruba resorts are known for indulging guests. All-inclusive family packages include endless activities, food, and drinks throughout the day. Couples and adult friends often opt for less expensive resorts without a meal plan, all the better for restaurant and bar hopping.
High-rise big-name properties on Palm Beach offer nonstop action — with watersports, casinos, shops, and top restaurants onsite or nearby. The downside? Sharing the beach and amenities with lots of visitors.
To avoid the crowds, book a room or suite in a low-rise complex just south of Eagle Beach, where stylish resorts boast the same white-sand beaches but fewer activities and nearby restaurants.
Palm and Eagle beaches are on the island’s popular northwest coast. Most accommodations line up along the waterfront or lie directly across the main road. There are advantages, though, to staying in the capital of Oranjestad or inland at a guesthouse or vacation rental.
The Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort and Casino is a high-rise with sunlit rooms, large bathrooms, a huge swimming pool, eight restaurants, and direct access to all that Palm Beach offers.
Marriott has three resorts on Palm Beach, each of which is family-friendly with its own appeal. The Marriott Resort and Stellaris Casino is all-inclusive with an enormous pool, an arcade-type game room, and a separate teen center. Rooms have modern video centers. The Marriott Surf Club has spacious suites with kitchens, balconies, and a living area. In addition to being on the beach, the landscaped courtyard has a lazy river pool with rafts, a waterfall, and swim-up bars. There are also three on-site restaurants and a kids’ club. The Marriott Ocean Club is smaller and quieter but its rooms are apartment-like suites with a large living area, a balcony, and a full kitchen. A nice-size pool (and separate kiddie’s pool) sits in the garden courtyard. On-site dining is limited to a pool bar and grill, a sports bar, and two small snack bars.
The Ritz-Carlton is luxurious and family-friendly. Highlights include oversized guest rooms with balconies, two swimming pools, and four on-site restaurants. Guests may use non-motorized watersports equipment including standup paddleboards and kayaks.
Boardwalk Small Hotel Aruba is tucked away on a former coconut plantation across the road from Palm Beach. Each of the fourteen casitas has a living area, kitchen, patio with an outdoor grill, and one or two separate bedrooms. There’s no restaurant on lush site and the communal pool is small, but it’s a short walk to the sea and dozens of restaurants and watersport vendors.
Divi Aruba Phoenix is one of three Divi resorts on Aruba, but the only one on Palm Beach. The all-suite resort has two pools and two full-service restaurants as well as food service on the beach. On-site features include a spa, fitness center, and a kids club with a separate swimming pool. Vendors rent watersports equipment on the beach.
Bucuti & Tara Beach, on 14-acres of white sand, is a 104-room adults-only boutique resort built for privacy, romance, and solitude. Guests enjoy an on-site spa and an infinity pool with views of the sea. Breakfast is complimentary and optional meal plans allow guests to dine on-site or at a variety of top island restaurants. While the resort has lots of garnered international awards it remains unpretentious and friendly.
Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort is a cute boutique resort with Dutch Colonial architecture and a family-friendly vibe. There’s no kids club, but there is a separate pool for kids. The resort also offers bicycle rentals, movie nights on the beach, and non-motorized water sports equipment. Two on-site restaurants have kids’ menus and theme-night specials. Rooms and suites are newly updated and have full or mini kitchens and free Wi-Fi.
Manchebo Beach Resort and Spa is a small luxury resort (with 72 rooms) that caters to couples and honeymooners with personal attention and impressive amenities. In addition to three on-site restaurants, guests enjoy a fitness center, spa, yoga classes on the beach, and nightly entertainment. All-inclusive packages are ideal for romantic getaways.
Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino, a Marriott property in the heart of the main town of Oranjestad, has three pools and seven restaurants. But the standout family amenity is free ferry rides to the resort’s private Renaissance Island. Ocean Suites are designated for families and separate from the adult-only side of the resort.