Old Feb 24, 10, 1:55 pm
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Connecticut
Programs: SPG-PLT, DL-PLT, AA-GLD (1 MM)
Posts: 141
Ouch - Rough Stay

Here's a trip report from my stay February 15-23, 2010

Hotel is in a great location. Nice pool. Beautiful beach. Nice restaurants. Nice, friendly staff. I was there with my wife and 3 young children for a February break vacation. Booked using points. Called in advance and they let me upgrade a suite for a couple of hundred bucks a night. Would have preferred a free upgrade, but happy to pay to guarantee a suite during a peak period.

Here's the problem. The Westin is the tallest building on the island. There are only 4 elevators. The whole time we were there at least 1 elevator was inoperable. At times TWO of the four elevators were out of service. We were on a middle floor and were forced to wait over 20 minutes for an elevator on multiple occasions. Horrible! Would have taken the stairs but had kids/strollers/etc... To the hotel's credit, after complaining I was comped a lunch and a breakfast as well as two nights of my paid suite upgrade. But the problems with the elevator really put a damper on the experience. There was constantly a line of guests at the front desk waiting to complain to management about the elevator situation.

We were informed of, and given, the dining passport (which results in cumulative discounts for subsequent meals) only after we heard about it from someone else - and after many meals without being able to apply the discount.

We asked the concierge for directions to Madame Janette's (one of the best restaurants in the Caribbean, and likely the best restaurant in Aruba) - and the concierge couldn't provide directions and didn't have a decent map. We got lost and found a friendly local who let us follow her to the restaurant.

Room did not have a hotel directory or room service menu anywhere to be found.

Hotel policy was for PLTs to get 2 bottles of water in their room. Delivery was spotty at best. Some days none at all. Other days we had to call to have it delivered.

Tough stay. Would probably go back to the hotel again because of its great location...but would NEVER go during a peak time like February break again. The hotel was full and it didn't seem like they could handle it. I like the property. I loved the view from my room. Great beach. Just a rough experience traveling with the little ones. If it was just my wife and I stairs would have been a better option.
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