ORANJESTAD (May 19, 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.

Subscribing to my newsletter is an ideal way to stay up to date with what’s going on in Aruba – whether you’re living on the island, miles away or your first visit!  

If this is your first time reading my newsletter – welcome!

The First Island Festival in San Nicolas

One of Aruba’s local festivals is back again this summer.

With a fresh new name, Island Festival, is totally revamped!

Previously dubbed as Carubbian, the new festival has a different concept.

This time, Island Festival will be a 3 street festival in the promenade of San Nicolas.

Each street will represent an island with its own theme: local island, multicultural island and historical island.

Walk the trio streets and experience their local and multicultural food, drinks and vibe.

Island festival will also have live shows.

Local actors will illustrate the Aruban way of life back in the days and how the lifestyle developed until today.

Two local bands will be playing live groovy Aruban music.

There’s also going to be different kiosks with local arts and crafts for sale made by Aruban artists.

Island Festival will be organized once a month in San Nicolas.

The first edition will be on May 29, 2019.

Locals will be there. You are also invited to visit San Nicolas.

Come and eat our food, taste our drinks, mingle with locals and experience the Aruban way of life!

Aruba Summer Music Festival

Summer time is around the corner, and one of the islands hottest music festivals is getting closer.

This year is going to be the 5th edition of Aruba’s Summer Music Festival.

It’s the largest festival in Aruba featuring Latin artists.

Who’s performing this year?

  • Silvestre Dangond
  • Farruko
  • Manuel Turizo
  • Ala Jaza
  • Jeon
  • Local Bands: Solo Banda Show & D-Licious

Aruba Summer Music Festival takes place 28 – 29 June, 2019.

Caribbean Sea Jazz Festival 2019 Canceled

The promoters of Caribbean Sea Jazz Festival recently announced that the event will be canceled for September 2019.

It would of been the 13th edition of the local festival featuring local Jazz artists.

The event was canceled, because the main sponsors did not want to fund it anymore, due to the decline of visitors to the festival.

After Soul Beach Music Festival, the Caribbean Music Festival was one of the most longest running festivals on the island.

The promoters are looking at the bright side and focusing on revamping the festival for 2020.

Fortunately the Caribbean Sea Jazz Festival will be celebrated in smaller fashion at Casibari Music Cafe on September 20 – 21, 2019.

New Boutique Hotel in Oranjestad

A new boutique hotel was announced this week by tourism minister.

The boutique hotel will be located in the beautiful main streets of Aruba.

It seems to have everything: 27 rooms, pool, rooftop bar, restaurant and parking.

This boutique hotel is part of future projects in the downtown area with a mix of commerce and accomodation.

Moratorium on Hotels in Aruba

Aruba has a pending moratorium on large resorts, with the exception of smaller boutique hotels and resorts that were already approved by previous governments.

According to the tourism minister, this boutique hotels fits perfectly within the Government’s vision for sustainable tourism development.

The boutique hotel is financed by local investors.

The same investors also plan to construct a smaller boutique hotel in Noord with 15 rooms, but this is still pending.

Constructions for the new boutique hotel in the downtown area could start by the end of 2019.

Hyatt Plans New Adult Only Pool

Hyatt Aruba Resort Spa & Casino is planning a mayor upgrade.

After spending over 21 million US dollars renovating their guest rooms, suites and regency club lounge, the resort plans to renovate its beachfront area and introduce an adults only pool.

The adult only pool will be an addition to the multilevel pool complex with three story water slide and swim up bar.

Expect the adult only pool to have 10 new private pool cabanas, each with private entrance to the pool. And a private hut for beach towels and outdoor showers.

Renovations will start mid 2019 and completed late 2020.

New Aruban Banknotes For 2019

Central Bank of Aruba revealed the new banknote designs for 2019.

Aruba’s new paper bills have 5 denominations: 10, 25, 50, 100 and 200.

The 2019 series of banknotes doesn’t include a 500 bill anymore, this will be replaced by a 200 florin bill.

Here’s a view of the new design for bills.

New Aruba Banknotes 2019

All designs were made by a local artist (Nigel Matthew).

The new series of banknotes have a main theme – “Life in Aruba”.

New banknotes contain elements of the Aruban flora, fauna, cultural heritage, monuments, and landmarks.

The new banknotes are very colorful, and contain the most advanced security features available on the market.

The old banknote series were designed back in 2003.

All the current banknotes will be replaced by the new designs as of June 3, 2019.

You can exchange the old banknotes for new ones between June 4 – December 4, 2019 at all commercial banks on the island.

After December 5, 2019 all old banknotes can only be exchanged at the Central Bank of Aruba.

Here’s a timeline for the emission of the new 2019 series florin banknotes:

June 3, 2019
Official emission of the new 2019 series florin banknotes

June 4 – August 11, 2019
Co-circulation of the 2003 series and the new 2019 series florin banknotes (10 weeks)

August 12, 2019
The 2003 series florin banknotes is taken out of circulation and is no longer legal.

June 4 – December 4, 2019
Exchange of the 2003 series for the new 2019 series florin banknotes only at the commercial banks.

December 5, 2019 – August 12, 2049

Exchange of the 2003 series for the new 2019 series florin banknotes only at the Central Bank of Aruba.

Moratorium on Supermarkets in Aruba

The Government recently announced an extension for moratorium on supermarkets. This includes mini-markets.

Moratoriums on new supermarkets are already in place until May 23, 2019, but this will be extended for 2 more years. Until 2021.

This means no permits will be granted by the government to construct any super or mini-markets.

The majority of supermarkets and mini markets on the island are Chinese stores.

According to a recent study performed late 2018, there’s a total of 187 supermarkets and mini-markets on the island.

The capital of Aruba, Oranjestad has 78 supermarkets, and is the region with the most markets on the island.

Here’s a breakdown of the total amount of supermarkets and minimarket around the island:

  • Noord & Tanki Leendert – 36 supermarkets
  • Paradera – 20 supermarkets
  • Santa Cruz – 16 supermarkets
  • Savaneta – 19 supermarkets
  • San Nicolas – 18 supermarkets

The most popular supermarkets on the island for visitors and locals are Superfood, Ling & Sons and Save More, which are all located in the hotel area.

All other supermarkets are scattered around the island.

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