ORANJESTAD (September 23, 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.
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New St.Regis Hotel in Aruba
After much anticipation, the government announced a new luxury hotel will be opening in Aruba – St.Regis Hotel.
St.Regis Hotels & Resorts is a luxury hotel chain part of the Starwood hotel group, which is now owned by Marriott International.
I know what you’re thinking, another hotel in Aruba?
There’s an ongoing dispute for moratorium on hotels on the island, but this resort was already in the pipeline for decades, according to the government – a promise that needs to be fulfilled.
The project was approved because it fits within the government’s vision to create a balance within economical development and environment despite the moratorium on hotels.
No more big hotels and resorts in the future, but quality over quantity.
According to the government, the project will open the door for more luxury resorts on the island and move away from the idea of too many resorts and mass tourism.
St.Regis will be constructed on Palm beach, between RIU Antillas & Divi Phoenix. Very close to the butterfly farm (on the other side of the road).
This is one of the last locations on the island close to the beach, and if there’s going to be a hotel on the island – the Government demands quality and luxury!
St.Regis was supposed to be at least 300 rooms, but the government reduced this to 220 rooms and residences. The resort will have restaurants, spa, pool and all the amenities you would expect from a 5 star hotel.
There’s a police outpost on this beach, but it will be relocated to another place.
Construction will start the first quarter of 2019 and will take about 2 – 3 years.
It’s estimated that it will be a investment of about $170 million dollars.
Desarrollos Hotelco will guide the construction of the hotel.
The resort will be one of the few in Caribbean.
Experience San Nicolas
There’s something new to do on the island, and it’s in San Nicolas.
San Nicolas is Aruba’s second largest city and known as the culture and art city of the island.
Every last Saturday of the month there’s going to be an “experience San Nicolas”. This is where you can go to get a taste of what San Nicolas has to offer.
What can you expect to experience?
A truly local feel for the island beyond the beaches and resorts.
Local artist are going to be making handmade jewelry right in front your eyes – and you can buy the one of a kind pieces..
There’s also going to be free arts and craft workshops for kids.
A guided art walk tour through the streets of San Nicolas so you can admire the murals created by Aruba’s talented locals and international artists. The tour also includes the museum of industry in San Nicolas and Cosecha Art Gallery.
A perfect combination to learn more about the islands history and art scene.
The museum of industry in San Nicolas will also host “comparti cumi” (in Papiamento) which means “share with me” in English.
During this trading of knowledge, local baristas will be sharing the history of coffee industry in Aruba. And of course you can sample the best coffees produced on the island.
There’s also going to be live music.
Experience San Nicolas will take place on September 29, 2018 from 9:00 AM to 1.00 PM (and every last Saturday of the month).
New Update on Parking Rules in Aruba
If you didn’t know it yet, you have to pay for parking in the main street of Aruba.
There’s parking meters and special lots assigned for locals and visitors.
The update on parking in downtown of Aruba is – cars will no longer be towed or booted, but a parking fine will be implemented. And more parking spaces will be turned into free spots.
At the moment the downtown area has about 1500 parking spaces, both paid and permits. According to the minister of transport 500 parking spots will become free of charge.
Between 1995 – 2005 there were 30.000 cars on the island.
Now in 2018 the amount of cars on the island has doubled to over 70.000 cars. And the government is investing in the islands infrastructure with several new roadways.
There’s also plans to make the main street accessible for cars.
The minister of transport didn’t mention any specific date for these changes to take effect.
Coastal Cleanup in Aruba
Aruba Tourism & Hotel Association will organize another coastal clean up!!
Our beaches will receive a well deserved clean up on October 27, 2018 from 8:30 AM – 10:30 AM.
Last year there were a total of 1898 volunteers and they managed to fill 7 containers full of waste that doesn’t belong on the beach.
The first edition of AHATA’s coastal cleanup was back in 2001 – this is the 17th edition!
This year’s theme is going to be “pa bienestad di Aruba” (in Papiamento) which means “for the wellbeing of Aruba” in English.
Here’s a list of popular beaches that will benefit from the coastal cleanup:
- Santana di Cacho
- Baby Beach
- Bachelor Beach
- Boca Grandi
- Grape Field Beach
- Santo Largo
- Eagle & Palm Beach
- Boca Catalina
- California Dunes
- Urirami Beach
- Guadirikiri & Boca Prins
- Fisherman’s Hut
- Linear Park
You can sign up at vanessa @ ahata.com
If you can’t make it to volunteer at this years beach clean up, you can also give a helping hand by keeping our beaches clean when you’re on the island.
Aruba Reef Care Project
The members of Aruba reef care project is calling all the heroes to help clean the islands reefs.
Aruba reef care project is an annual marine environment awareness campaign that focuses on the preservation of clean underwater sites and beaches.
They bring together certified divers, snorkelers and topsiders for a clean-up of underwater sites and beaches.
There’s a strong reason to clean the islands reefs and ban most plastic items in Aruba.
This will be the 24th annual Aruba Reef Care Project.
Event will be help on September 30, 2018.
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