I stayed with my family and extended family at the Hyatt Regency in Aruba for Christmas of 2022.
I’ll start with the best part. The Camp Hyatt staff was amazing. And relative to Boston child care costs, it was not overpriced, especially with the quantity discounts when you bring multiple kids. $95 for the first kid then $60 (not sure if that is per additional kid or for all of the additional kids). We didn’t plan to leave the kids there long, but they never wanted to leave. The staff did a great job playing with them, working on craft projects, bringing them around the resort to feed the fish/birds, go swimming, scavenger hunts, etc.
Ok, now the worst part. We stayed in room 315. Unfortunately, this was overlooking the outdoor lobby bar. The bar stayed very loud until 1am every evening. I think it is great that they provide venues for fun, however, they need to be further from the rooms. They have a beach bar available that is further from rooms that they could use for late night instead along with tons of indoor lower level meeting space 2 floors below rooms that could be converted into evening revenue space. There was never even more than 20-40 people at the bar, so certainly not enough revenue to justify harming the experience of the guests in the rooms. Laughably, they put signs in the halls claiming quiet hours are from 8pm to 8am. They clearly don’t follow their own rules. Certainly avoid a pool view if you go to bed early.
The Wifi was terrible over christmas week. You could connect to wifi but the internet connection would get lost every few minutes. Seemed to be off about half the time like a rolling blackout. It was not a DNS issue as i couldn’t even ping an ip address during the blackouts. Like most hotels, they use a captive portal meaning that it is nearly impossible to get an independent apple watch working on their network. Luckily AT&T’s international day pass was affordable and Setar roaming data was decent so could use the hotspot when needed.
Rooms and Housekeeping
The rooms were nice and our basic 2 queen room handled a couple of adults and 2 kids without too much trouble. We had them deliver a medium size dorm fridge which we used a bit. Had a Keurig type device. Housekeeping was fine. Only issue was proximity to the bar (see noise).
Elevators & Access
The elevators (at least the ones near our room) were quick and efficent. There was bay of 3 elevators from the lobby (2nd floor) to the guest rooms (I think up to floor 9) on my wing. One of the elevators accessed the 1st/Ground level. The only annoying part was that you needed to use your RFID card to press the floor button and the reader didn’t work that well. The design of the pool area can be a bit of a challenge to get from one side to another, but not a real issue, especially if you don’t mind getting wet.
There is a nice looking adult pool area but as I was with kids, I didn’t spend any time there.
The family pool area was very nice and surprisingly not crowded on Christmas week. There was a significant water slide that the kids enjoyed. Pool lounge chairs weren’t overly abundant but not impossible either. See below for pool food and drink.
The hotel is directly on the beach. Walk right out from the pools and you are on Palm Beach. The hotel has Palapas (thatched umbrella that fits over 2 lounge chairs) on the beach with lunge chairs. To reserve in advance, you must pay.
Red Sail Sports
Red Sail is the onsite water sports and gift shop vendor. Not sure how closely they are affiliated with the Hyatt.
For $60pp they have a few hour catamaran trip to two snorkel spots. Not amazing snorkeling but a fun family excursion for the day. Includes a few little appetizers and an open bar. The boat docks right in front of the hotel.
There is great daytime casual food options onsite along with a great fine dining restaurant for the evening. However, you need to go offsite for casual dining after 7pm.
Runias de Mar
Great fine dining restaurant in the hotel’s lower level surrounded by the coy ponds. Nice atmosphere and mostly great food. The barata salad ($21) was amazing. The Chilean sea bass ($47) was very good as was the asparagus side. “The Good One” drink (Hennesy VS, dash of blackberry liqueur, fresh lime juice, simple syrup and muddled blackberries) was wonderful. However, the burger ($25) was not impressive at all. Kids meals were a small notch up from the standards. Service was great. Didn’t notice a strict dress code, but I would avoid beach wear. Nice shorts or jeans should work.
Kadushi Juice Bar
Excellent and affordable smoothies and fruit bowls. They use lots of real fruit in everything. My daughter loved the Bernardo’s Blend (Banana, Pineapple, Strawberry, Watermelon, Melon, Papaya). Staff was very nice and acommidating to the kids particular orders. Located between the pool and the beach.
Palms Beach Bar / Palms Beachside Grill
Lower bar has a late afternoon happy hour with ~$6 margaritas and the like. The beach bar served food from the Palms Beachside Grill. We really liked the garden wrap ($13 with a side) and had it a few times. The kids had the cheese pizza ($13) fairly often. I thought it was just edible, but the kids loved it.
Balashi Bar & Grill
There is a seperate kicthen for poolside delivery and the swim up bar with its own slightly different menu, however, the pool servers are happy to grab any food from the beach bar menu. The Spicy Tuna Bowl ($15) was wonderful and had it multiple times. After thinking about how much tuna I was eating, had to switch it up for the fried grouper taco which was also very good.
Breakfast Buffet (in Runias de Mar)
I didn’t try it. Seemed reasonable if you are looking for a huge breakfast, but expensive if you want something light.
Shoco Coffee Bar & Market
Fine place to get a coffee or snack. Somewhat starbucks like Single shot of espresso was $4 (ok, note that they use pods).
Alfresco Bar + Bites
The Upper bar between the lobby and pool area was my nemesis (see noise above). They also had a very limited menu of “late night bites”. Unfortunately, this was the
Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort Spa and Casino
J.E. Irausquin Blvd 85, Palm Beach, Aruba +297 586 1234
Hotel Carribean Hyatt Aruba Palm Beach