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“Favorite Family Beach Vacation Destination”

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Marriott's Aruba Surf Club
Ranked #16 of 24 Hotels in Palm - Eagle Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 30 March 2012

We've owned at Marriott's Aruba Surf Club since 2005 and travel there one or two times per year. Our unit is a spacious three bedroom/three bath...it can be "locked off" into a two bedroom and a studio unit. Most years, we opt to lock off and either spend two consecutive weeks or divide our weeks into a family trip and a "mommy and daddy only" getaway. The Resort is great for either experience. Through Interval International, for a fee ($119), we've been fortunate to trade our locked off studio for a full two bedroom...a great perk for traveling families.

The Surf Club is located at the far end of Palm Beach, Aruba and is part of what is commonly referred to as "marriottville" which include the new Ritz Carlton (still under construction), the Marriott Hotel and the other timeshare Marriott's Ocean Club. The complex boasts several restaurants (including a Ruths Chris), shops, a popular casino, car rental desks and a red sail sports. The Surf Club consists of three high-rise buildings surrounding three large pools and a lazy river. The largest pool has a zero entry area, a water fountain and a slide, making it a favorite for families. The smallest (and newest pool) is for adults only and boasts a view of the beach. The middle pool offers a volleyball net and swim up pool bar complete with tv featuring sporting events and a fun happy hour from 3p-5p daily. The lazy river is a blast for everyone including the occasional iguana that you're sure to spot swimming across the current. There are two large hot tubs, as well. In addition to the swim up bar, food and drinks may be purchased onsight in the Marketplace. There is also a game pavillion and on sight fitness center, as well as twice weekly craft fair.

The beach, while crowded, is deep and offers plenty of palapas and chairs. The palapa issue is really only an issue if you require front row seating. Otherwise, most days, you can arrive at the beach anytime of day and get a shady spot to sit...just rarely in a "prime" location. Play the line up game only if a front row palapa is a must.

Palm Beach is long and lined with several high rise resorts. It is terrific for a family that requires activity and dining options. Not so great if you are looking for tranquility (try Eagle Beach Aruba if that is your ideal.) Most days we walk the length of the beach to the Divi Phoenix where we enjoy a dip in the calm sea and a drink. Sometimes we stop at Bugaloe for lunch on our return trip...a great little bar on a pier about midway down Palm Beach. We also enjoy windsurfing and always find the people at Vela, located near the Marriott, very helpful and accomodating. Highly recommend them for beginners through experts.

The Palm Beach area also offers many great evening activities. There are two malls with shopping, dining and movie theater options...as well as a modern (and clean!) bowling alley, flow rider experience, several casinos and bar options. All are within walking distance from the Surf Club, but taxi's are readily available, as well.

The units themselves at the Surf Club are fantastic. Each is equipped with washer/dryers, balconies, flat panel tv's, comfortable furniture and nautical decor. They are bright and clean and maintained nicely. A truly great location to relax after a day of exploring...or floating on the lazy river. Enjoy!

Room Tip: Ask for a high floor facing the pool for the best view.
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  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled with family
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6  Thank Lisa H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 29 March 2012

Spent a week there from March 16 thru 23 2012. Had a 2 br unit and a 1 br unit. My daughter, son in law and two grandsons stayed in the 2br. Very clean, everyone was extremely friendly and the swimming pools---zero entrance, lazy river and slide were ideeeeaaallllllll fro kids. It was simply great. Walking distance to restaurants---about 1/4 mile. The restaurant on the premises (outdoor dining) was adequate but our only complaint was that the food was sub par and the menu choices lacked healthy offerings. Do not ever order the pizza rolls----fried junk. But, eat off site or in your time share. This did not detract from the overall great management of the property. Well taken care of, clean, clean, clean and a very pleasant staff. The beach is very nice and the water perfect. It is spoiled only by the commercial activities that take place there (very noisy at times) that are not owned by nor part of the Surf Club. Beaches are open to all of the public in Aruba. Overall, my wife and I rate this property a class act. Great for the whole family.

Room Tip: Ask for the higher rooms. The lower rooms are subject to the beach activity noise and other traffic...
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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4  Thank Mike W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2012

A friend owns a time-share at the Surf Club in the Lighthouse Building, and I went March 9 - 16. We had a high floor and a view of the ocean and the California Lighthouse. This was my first time-share experience and I was very impressed by the quality of the room accommodations - we had a large one-bedroom with a "lockout", and it was more than enough space for 2 people. Could have easily accommodated 4 or 6 people. The fitness facilities were well-kept, as was pretty much the entire resort. It is a big place, so expect to get up early to get a palapa or a spot by the pool. Seems to be an ideal location for families, since you can cook and eat in your room to save money. There are activities every day for kids, and there is a lazy river and a water slide. If you're a grown up like me, you'll enjoy lazing by the beach during the day, and heading out to great meals in the evening. I didn't have one bad meal the entire week! Ate at: Papillon, Barefoot on the Beach, Moomba, Amsterdam Cafe, and BurgerBurger. : ) Heard that Two Fools and a Bull was great, but couldn't get a reservation. Also heard great things about Salt and Pepper, but didn't make it there either...guess I'll have to return next year. : ) It was veryyyy windy when we were there, so be mindful of that if you plan to dine alfresco.

Room Tip: try to get in the Lighthouse building, on a high floor, facing the Lighthouse.
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank FairNew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 March 2012

This is a great resort. Of course, just being in Aruba is a good start. But the Surf Club has wonderful facilities that are kept spotless all the time. There are plenty of pools including one for adults only. And the beach is amazing. Lots of new paloppa's (who knows how to spell this?, basically thatched umbrellas to get out of the sun) and plenty of Bimini chairs. The beach is gorgeous, no waves because of the prevailing winds and you can walk for miles.

They say that Aruba is the last island that you visit because once you go there you keep going back. The Surf Club is a great place to go back to.

Room Tip: South facing in the Spyglass or Compass buildings above the 4th floor will give you ocean views and...
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank D053004
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 March 2012

We just returned from 10 days in Aruba at the Surf Club. We traded our timeshare for this location and it was a great choice. To anyone nervous about going so far to Aruba, the high rise area is very much like American vacation spots. From American restaurants to almost EVERYONE speaking English, it was very similar to our annual Marriott Vacation Club vacation in West Palm Beach at Marriott Ocean Pointe. If your staying in the high rise area, it really does feel like Florida.

Weather: Fantastic! Mid 80s all week and only one day was overcast. They get very little rain each year, but it will rain for a minute or two every few days. Most people just stay in the pools and ocean. There is just trace amounts of rain. The weather is perfect. You will burn, so be careful.

Surf Club: The lazy river is amazing. A very relaxing river that is perfect for all ages. We brought our own tubes after reading reviews that tubes are sometimes sold out and we didn't want to take that chance. Turns out they had tons of tubes available. 36 inch tubes were $9 and they also sold all types of children tubes. Only bring your own tube if you want an extra large one or a louge tube. The 36 inch tubes they sell are just fine. P.S. They have a sign that the biggest tube allowed is 36 inches, but that is NOT enforced. All loungers, large tubes, noodles, are just fine.

There was a few pools at the resort not counting the lazy river. There was one connected to the lazy river with a waterfall and water slide. There was another near the restraunt (Captains Galley) that had a swim up bar and volleyball net. And there was an adults only pool closer to the ocean. Zero entry pools are at this resort if that's important to you.

There were 2 hot tubs near the pools and they were very nice and big.

Resereve chair at 7 am and you will have no problems. The 2 hour rule isn't enforced strictly. The chairs along the lazy river are the busiest. Try to avoid the chairs farthest from the ocean. It's very windy because of the opening between the towers.

My only complaint at the resort would have to be the pool and spa hours. All the books in the room and the hotel staff say the pool is open till 10 pm, but the not so friendly "security" staff enforce an 8 pm closing. Way to early and really affected evening plans.

The security is absolutely not needed. There is no crime, no unwanted visitors, no problems. The 2 hour pool chair is HARDLY enforced. Marriott is simply staffing 5 locals a day to do nothing. Don't think the resort is unsafe or anything like that because of the secuurity, as Arubans say: its "one happy island". You're right next to the Holiday Inn where tragedy struck a handful of years ago, but that was was an extreme exception to the safety on the island. Just be smart.

The ocean is great. You can reserve palapas up to 3 days at a time for $15. There are plenty of chairs that aren't hard to reserve. Water is very clear. Plenty of activities. There's a subnet cruise for $30.

We stayed on the the 4th and 14th floor during our stay, one week was our timeshare. The views are great on the higher floors. Ocean Front, Ocean Side, and Ocean View rooms can all see the ocean and they won't disappoint. Garden View means Garden View.

Internet is available at the resort with WIFI at the pool and lobby. Ethernet cables are in the rooms if you bring a laptop. Annoying for tablet users, but it gives you something to do when lounging at the pool.

Groceries: As expected, the Marketplace is very expensive at the resort. We eat out every night, so we didn't go to the grocery store. We paid high prices at the Market Place, like $7 for Wheat Thins. The Market Place had a deal on Coffee though. You can purchase a souvenir Surf Club travel mug for $15 dollars and then get refills for a dollar during your stay. Tip: In the Gym, soda and other drinks are much cheaper in the vending machine. Coke was only a dollar.

Ocean Club and Stellarris Hotel: Both are right next to the resort and they had great shopping and food. The casino at the Stellaris is very fun, but it is smoky from cigarettes. They have penny slots, if you don't want to spend a lot.

Restraunts: There is only one restraunt at the Surf Club. Its called Captains Galley and it serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. An all American Breakfast special for 12.95 and a 13.95 pizza special every morning and night provides some cheaper meals. They had a late afternoon happy hour specials if your into that. Other food included was salads, burgers, chicken strips, some fish, etc. Every Marriott has a restraunt like this. Clones of this restraunt are at the Ocean Club (Pavillion) and at the Stellarris (Waves). Champions at the Ocean Club is just like Applebees. And the Steallaris had two very nice restraunts. They had Simply Fish right on the beach for around $40 per entree. Very good fish and steak. They also had a Ruth Chris's near the casino. They have amazing steak. La Vista was also at the hotel and they have fantastic buffets every night.

Other restraunts we ate at we're:

Hyatt's Ruinas del Mar: Great food and a great setting. The Hyatt is the only resort on the island that can give the Marriott a run for its money in my opinion. Very nice resort.

Hadicuari: Right next to the Surf Club beach,which had a good weekend seafood buffett and a great view. Worth going.

Smokey Joes: 5 minute walk, great street view with a fun island feel. Ribs, burgers, and fish. Worth going.

Casa Tua Pizza: 7 minute walk, great pizza, cheap prices. Worth going.

Pelican Pier: You can see the pier from the resort. You're on the ocean, but the food was nothing special. Not worth going.

Activities: We did an ABC tour and we had it to ourselves for some reason. A private tour was very nice and the guide was great. You see the whole island for $90. Your best money spent will be a tour or taxi to baby beach. Amazing water and greats depths. Our taxi to the airport said it would cost $44 each way to Baby Beach. Definitely worth going. The Natural pool is great and has many fish, but it's very hard to get to.

We also did the Atlantis submarine. $100 per person, but you go 150 feet underwater. I'd do it again. It was at the downtown Marina, near Louis Vuitton..

Downtown: Every luxury store your could imagine. Very busy feel and plenty of flea markets with knock offs and other Arubans souvenirs.

Overall, this was a great vacation. It's a long day of traveling if you dont have a non stop flight, customs got long on the way home, but it is worth it. Extremely nice people, a great resort, great food, and great weather.

Room Tip: Ask for a high floor with a pool and ocean view.
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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12  Thank Langgggg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 March 2012

Spent five nights at the Surf Club in a one bedroom villa with garden view. If you are on a higher floor (5 and up) you can catch a glimpse of the ocean from your balcony. The lower floors are obstructed by palm trees and vegetation. The place was almost filled to capacity with lots of families with young children. Both the pool areas and the beach were crowded. There are simply too many apartments in three different towers to share too little recreational space. The pools and lazy river are very nice, however, you had to get up early in the morning and put a chair tag on your lounge if you wanted a good location. To float in the lazy river you have to buy a tube for $7.00. The serenity pool (adults only) filled up quickly with tagged chairs and was packed by mid morning. If you want a beach palapa you have to reserve it the day before for $10.00 or take your chances and get up at 7:00 am to get a free one if one is left. There are plenty of beach lounges (some with attached sun shades), however, space is limited so they are lined up very closed together. Again, if you want a lounge in one of the first couple of rows by the ocean you have to get up early and tag it. Who wants to do that on their vacation? There are staff people that walk around and supposedly remove tags from lounges that haven't been used in two hours, but it didn't seem to make much of a difference.

The apartment was clean, well laid out and featured a full kitchen with all appliances, including a washer and dryer. The bed was very comfortable; a bathtub and vanity area are part of the bedroom, the attached bathroom has a shower, toilet and another vanity. There were some stains and nicks and scratches on the furniture, but everything worked. There is a public bus stop right outside the building at the far end of the parking lot. Take the bus to one of the local supermarkets and stock up on food and drink, it'll safe you some money. The elevators were fast, never waited longer than a few seconds. The exercise room on the ground floor was surprisingly large and featured lots of different equipment. If you want wi-fi you have to go to the lobby, none in the rooms. There is a National Car Rental desk, you can rent a car for about $50 a day plus insurance. Be prepared to wait in line, there is only one agent who does all the paperwork and then shows customers to their cars.

The Surf Club is connected via walkways to the Ocean Club next door and then on to the Stellaris Hotel and Casino. The casino is about a five minute walk away. Overall, the Surf Club is a well maintained facility and a good fit for families and if you travel there during the off season it will probably be less congested. For us, it was a so-so experience and we will probably pick a different property next time we return to Aruba.

Room Tip: Get ocean front if you can. If you get a garden view, insist on a higher floor.
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank BeeUpstate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 March 2012

My wife and I look forward to our annual trip to Aruba more that anywhere.The Surf Club is our home away from home for three weeks every year. The three resort (soon to be four) complex provides all the ammenities we could possibly want. The staff is exceptionally well trained and always greet us cheerfully. A special thanks to Jayna and Alix at the hotel's Lobby Bar for your exceptional service and friendship. You bring extra joy to our visits! Make sure to go to Simply Fish on your first night. There is nothing like getting your feet in the sand with an Aruba Ariba to get your vacation rolling!

Room Tip: Don't miss the hotel's Lobby Bar for your favorite cocktail with Jayna and Alix!
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank LakehouseNH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Marriott's Aruba Surf Club

Address: 103 LG Smith Boulevard, Palm - Eagle Beach, Aruba
Region: Caribbean > Aruba > Palm - Eagle Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#14 Family Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#18 Romantic Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
Price Range: $393 - $947 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Marriott's Aruba Surf Club 3.5*
Number of rooms: 450
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Also Known As:
Marriott`s Aruba Surf Club Hotel Palm/Eagle Beach
Marriotts Palm Eagle Beach
Marriotts Aruba Surf Hotel
Marriott Aruba Surf Club
Marriotts Aruba Surf Club
Aruba Surf Club
Marriott Palm/Eagle Beach
Marriott Surf Club Aruba

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