ORANJESTAD (July 7, 2019) – Sundays I write about the most relevant and interesting happenings on the island in my newsletter.

This weeks edition features the top news headlines in Aruba.

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Aruba Ariba Celebrates 56 Years Anniversary

If you’ve been to Aruba before, you’d agree with me that Aruba Ariba is the signature drink on the One Happy Island.

Not familiar with Aruba Ariba?

Created on July 1, 1963 during a mixology contest at the Bali Bar, inside the Aruba Caribbean Hotel, now known as Hilton – it’s a must taste!

The cocktail was made by a local bartender, Juan Kock, at the Bali Bar.

Every year on July 1, the island celebrates this famous drink. And this year marks the 56th year anniversary since this cocktail was made up, on a piece of paper.

Juan Kock, now a taxi driver, still has the paper with the recipe for one of the most famous drinks in the Caribbean region.

Originally dubbed as, Ariba Aruba, the recipe has 9 ingredients – white rum and vodka, creme de banana, grand marnier, fruit punch, grenadine syrup with juice: lemon, pineapple and orange.

Not to forget, a cherry and orange on top to give the drink a beautiful appeal.

Aruba Ariba looks beautiful and taste delicious, and the rum really hits!

Visit the One Happy Island and try the iconic Aruba Ariba.

The New “Happy Community Initiative” in Aruba

Visitors can now contribute to good causes in Aruba after a new partnership was announced this week between local community organizations and tourism authorities.

The new program called, Happy Community Initiative, is geared toward supporting the youths in Aruba.

All the funds that are collected will be used to support local organizations to help youths with after school programs, homework assistance and mentorship activities.

Anyone can donate by using the new digital “donation kiosk” available at many timeshare resorts on the island. You can also ask for other possibilities to donate at your resorts front desk.

Happy Community is an initiative by CEDE Aruba & Aruba Timeshare Association. CEDE Aruba is a foundation that supports non profit organization in Aruba since 1986.

With just one act of kindness, your contribution can do good for youths in Aruba.

The New Public Bus & Paid Parking in Aruba

A total of 15 new public buses are on the way to Aruba from Brazil.

All with a bright yellow paint job that is visible at night, including the Aruba logo on the sides.

The first six buses are scheduled to reach Aruba end of July and the other buses in August 2019.

By the end of 2019, Arubus should have a float of 30 new buses.

All new buses have air conditioning, free wifi, charging stations and wheelchair accessibility.

Paid Parking in Aruba
Parking in Aruba was always free, but it all changed in 2016 when paid parking was introduced in the downtown area.

However, in 2017 paid parking became a suggestion, not a must. And the yellow car wheel clamp was removed. But parking in permit spots (marked with yellow lines) is still not allowed, and your car will be towed.

Aruparking plans to introduce new rules: parking close to the downtown area will have a price. And free parking will be allowed, but further away from the main-street.

In total there will be 555 free parking spots, 496 permit spots, and 584 paid parking spots.

The payment system at the parking meter will also be expanded by adding debit and credit cards.

Official date for new changes will be announced at a later date.

New Culinary Experience in The Downtown Area

A new style of dining and hanging out was introduced this week at this local spot called, Jimmy’s Kitchen, in the downtown area.

The food concept is all about easy way of eating.

Finger foods on sticks!

A wooden board made by an Aruban artists is used to serve the food. Six food sticks are fixed upright on the board, which makes them easy to grab and eat.

The boards are made from recycled trees like the watapana and kwihi into pieces of art on their own.

You can choose between 60 different snacks on the menu, including meat, fish, vegan, vegetarian and desserts. Each food stick ranges from $2.50 and $4.50 per stick.

The new spot is part of a cool lounge called District 7, known for DJ’s and groovy tracks. You can even enjoy the new stick snacks during club hours, which is until 4:00 AM.

Jimmy’s Kitchen is located in the downtown area. Close to the public square, Plaza Nicky Habibe (Address: Windstraat 32)

Opened 6 days a week (closed on Mondays), from 6:00 PM until 4:00 AM.

The First Sport Hotel in Aruba

The Aruba Racquet Club, one of the islands premier tennis facilities will renovate into one of the first sport hotels in Aruba.

The new resort will be named “Daher Sport Hotel”.

Daher Sport Hotel will have a private clubhouse, restaurant, a bar, gym, tennis court and pool. Guests can also enjoy first class spa & salon services, free tennis clinics, and different sport packages.

The sport hotel will have different accommodation types: studio’s, one bedrooms, and two bedroom units.

Located close to Hadicurari Beach & Malmok, the hotel is close to the hotspots in Palm Beach, including restaurants, bars and malls.

More information on the new resort will be released soon.

Constructions start August 2019.

Protecting Our Shoco’s in Aruba

Owls are beautiful and mysterious!

You might have seen one on your trip if you go to the national park in Aruba, or drive along the north coast of the island.

Unfortunately, one quarter of the world’s owl species are considered endangered. The owl population in Aruba is also considered vulnerable.

But a change is happening, thanks to Aruba Birdlife Conservation.

The organization partnered with National Park Arikok and global owl project to help promote the conservation of Aruban owls.

One of their projects is using artificial owl nests to stimulate the owls to produce more baby owls. Together they already installed 30 nests around the island. The goal is to reach 500 nests.

We can also help when it comes to conserving the islands owls by not driving on the beach or sand dunes. And be careful when driving on the north side of the island, which has habitats belonging to lizards, iguanas, crabs, owls, and other small animals, even indigenous plants.

Aruba’s owl population will continue to thrive day by day, as the project advances.

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