Aruba Trip Reports

Bucuti Beach Resort

April 29 - May 5, 2002 by Ron in Houston

We left Houston on AA and traveled to Aruba via Miami arriving around 2:30PM. Passing through customs was a breeze and we arrived at the hotel at 3:20PM via taxi ($12.00). While checking into the Bucuti we were greeted with a glass of champagne. Susan Biemans, co-owner, greeted us with a smile and nice chat. Susan is a California native who has been in Aruba for over 15 years. She and the entire staff were a pure delight.

We checked into our room on the second floor corner, checked out the beautiful ocean view (looks just like the Bucuti Cam shot), unpacked in a hurry, threw our swimsuits on and headed to the beach. Eagle beach has to be one of the most beautiful beaches we have ever seen. It is a paradise for the over-40 crowd, with no crowding, no beach sports equipment around (water skis, banana rides, parasailing, etc.). We liked the quiet atmosphere.

While on the beach we were supplied with a flag to stick in the sand should we want to order something. Stick the flag upright in the sand, and a waiter comes to take your order. We recommend the "Sex on the Beach" and "The Aruban Pina Colada".

The first evening (Tuesday) we dined at La Dolce Vita. Great atmosphere, good food, skimpy wine list. We enjoyed it and will go back.

On Wednesday, we rose early and headed to the beach. As we are typical "beach bums", we spent most of the day in lounge chairs soaking up the sun and reading. Every hour or so we took a dip into the ocean. Again, there were relatively few bathers and virtually no water skis or other water machines to look out for. We ate lunch at the Turtle's Nest (connected to the Bucuti), which looks for all the world like an old Pirate Galleon that beached itself in front of the hotel. The food was good and the service excellent.

Wednesday evening we took the Kukoo Kunuku "Drunken Bus" tour and had the time of our lives. The bus picked us up in front of the hotel ($50/person with a 10% discount from the Visit Aruba Plus Card), and whisked us away to a sitdown dinner at the Minister of Tourism's home. Included for the evening were a drink and dinner at the Minister's home (he and his family were not there, dinner included a salad, chicken breast and a chunk of filet mignon with veggies and a sweet for dessert), and stops at five local bars (including the last stop at Carlos and Charlie's). The first drink at each bar was free. We had a WONderful time, ended up drunk (as were all on the bus [27]). The bus poured us out in front of the Bucuti around 1:30AM.

We snorkeled with Jethro and the Octopus. Met in front of the Holiday Inn at 8:30am. Set sail at 9:00am. Included juice and pastries on the way to three sites. Snorkeled over the WWII wreck, at Malmok and one other site. Very enjoyable with a sandwich lunch on the way back.

Other restaurants visited: Madame Jenette's (wonderful), Jakarta (had indonesian rijsttafel, very good).

All in all we had a wonderful time. And to top it off, we were pleasantly surprised that U.S. Customs is located at the airport in Aruba. Therefore, we went through U.S. Customs on-island and didn't have to mess with it back in the states. This was great as we were exhausted after the whole trip and the flights back to Houston.

Bon Bini!!

Ron in Houston