ORANJESTAD (November 18, 2018) – Once a week, on Sundays I write about the most relevant and interesting happenings on the island in my weekly 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!
From Cunucu To Table
Aruba plans to offer visitors a new gastronomic experience by combining two industries together: tourism and agriculture.
The concept is a growing trend around the world, known as agritourism.
Agritourism is where local farmers open their doors to the public in order to teach more about what they do, and give you a taste of what’s growing in their cunucu (local yard).
Local farmers grow up in the tradition of farming. Inland you’ll find natives growing different type of produce in their yard, from peanuts, watermelon, melons, beans and small cucumbers. That’s not all, they have all sorts of fruits and vegetables that you are going to try in the future as the agritourism project becomes a reality.
The project is collaboration with the islands agriculture department (Santa Rosa) and the islands tourism board. And they named it “from cunucu to table”, a catchy name!
By creating synergies between the hospitality industry and local farms, visitors will be able to capture the authenticity of Aruba’s food culture straight from the cunucu!
Aruba already has the beautiful beaches, amazing landscape, and the top restaurants in the entire Caribbean. Now we’re working on bringing visitors closer to local farmers, creating a whole new level of culinary experience.
This will create new things to do on the island, for example:
- Agricultural museums
- Exotic herb gardens
- Agricultural fairs, festival and markets
- Farm tours
- New bed and breakfast accommodations
There’s going to be new reasons for visiting Aruba in 2019 and beyond.
New Baggage System in Airport
Aruba’s airport signed an agreement this week with BEUMER Group to design and install a new high-speed baggage transportation and sortation system.
The agreement was signed with BEUMER Group, a leading supplier of baggage handling solutions for airports worldwide.
The new high speed baggage system including screening and a weight identification system will streamline the US preclearance process at the airport.
It will also eliminate the requirement to reclaim checked luggage and undergo the second passenger screening process which is currently in place for the U.S.
Pre-Clearance operation. Additionally, the new system will also allow for U.S and non-U.S. bound flights to operate from a common-use check-in facility.
The modern baggage system is perfect for the airport’s Gateway 2030 expansion and modernization program.
According to CEO of Aruba’s airport, “The new baggage handling system is the centerpiece of the airport’s redevelopment project, and will allow for the modernization and streamlining of many of our passenger processes, most notably, a significantly more efficient U.S.”
Installation will begin in Q3 of 2020, and completion is expected in the Q2 of 2021.
Crossing For Hope Results
Five athletes made history on November 11, 2018 by swimming from Venezuela to Aruba.
The journey had one purpose, to collect funds for the Dutch Cancer Society (Koningin Wilhelmina Funds) – a non-profit organization that offers support to cancer patients.
Preparations started over a year ago, as the team trained under the supervision of the first swimmer (Roly Bisslik) who completed the same journey in 1988.
The journey: from Cabo San Roman, Puerto Escondido, Venezuela to Aruba. Estimated to take them at least 9 or 12 hours to complete, but they did better than expected and broke records!
After 8 hours and 20 minutes, the first swimmer (Davy Bisslik), the son of the Roly Bisslik, reached the area of Savaneta.He covered a distance of 36.06 kilometers.
Here’s a list of the time and distance covered by the rest of the swimmers.
- Stephan Thijsen – 8 hours and 41 minutes – 37.37 kilometers
- Romar Arendsz – 8 hours and 47 minutes – 40.92 kilometers
- Wendy Kock – 10 hours and 2 minutes – 43 kilometers
- Deaxo Croes – 10 hours and 20 minutes – 42.42 kilometers
In 1988, Roly Bisslik completed the swim from Venezuela to Aruba in 10 hours and 28 minutes. His son, breaks the record with 2 hours and 8 minutes.
Two other swimmers made history on their own. Stefan Thijsen, now the youngest to complete the journey at 22 years old , and Wendy Kock, the only lady in the group became the first woman to swim across the ocean between Venezuela and Aruba.
They managed to collect over $20.000 for the Dutch Cancer Society.
As of now, the team has a more ambitious dream, to organize a swimming competition around the island.
New Eco Friendly Aloe Mineral Sunscreen
Aruba aloe revealed its brand-new line of natural, mineral-based sunscreens.
The new sunscreen is completely developed by Aruba Aloe’s local in-house Research & Development team.
One of the most significant benefits of the new mineral sunscreen is that it’s eco and coral friendly. It’s a perfect alternative for the upcoming ban on sunscreens that contain harmful ingredients like oxybenzone.
The new sunscreens by Aruba aloe do not contain oxybenzone, the minerals are not harmful to corals and are not linked to coral bleaching. It also doesn’t contain nanoparticles, this prevents minerals from going into your skin. Additionally, the new sunscreens still promise Aruba Aloe signature coconut-vanilla sunscreen scent.
Side note, before the official ban on single use plastics and harmful sunscreens in 2020, all non-mineral sunscreens will be phased out and no longer available in stores or online.
Interested in seeing how Aruba aloe makes their sunscreen and various other skin products? Take a tour!
The tour at the museum and factory provides insight into the Aruba aloe production process, along with the 160-year history of aloe cultivation in Aruba.
New Carnival Jingle 65 & Caiso & Soca Monarch
Carnival 65 was officially inaugurated on November 11, 2018 with the revealing of the new jingle for the season and a music festival in San Nicolas.
The official organizing body for Aruba’s carnival also announced the schedule for Aruba Caiso & Soca Monarch 2019.
Caiso & Soca Monarch 2019 is the biggest music festival event during carnival season featuring local musical creators and bands.
Here’s the schedule for Caiso & Soca Monarch 2019:
- Preliminary nights – February 4 – 6, 2019
- Surprise Event – February 7, 2019
- Final Event – February 9, 2019
The surprise event promises special acts by local & international artist, on a never before seen stage set up.
This musical event is certainly worth attending if you’re looking to experience the local music feeling in Aruba.
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