Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. UponArriving has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. UponArriving and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.
The Junior Suite at the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino is one of my favorite rooms that I’ve stayed in while visiting the Caribbean. The suites are extremely spacious corner rooms with brilliant floor to ceiling windows and come with a wrap-a-round balcony that overlooks the bright turquoise Caribbean waters and resort pool. Here’s a review of my recent stay in a Junior Suite at the Aruba Marriott Resort (full hotel review to follow).
As soon as you enter the suite, there’s a hallway that leads to into the room.
Directly to your left is a good-sized closet with plenty of room for your luggage and where you’ll find robes and slippers. Further down you’ll see the mini-fridge and coffee maker. The mini-fridge is quite small but has enough room to store a hand full or two of beverages.
The bathroom has two separate semi-vessel sinks and vanity mirror areas with a magnifying mirror as well. Several different switches control the lighting in the bathroom so you can set the bathroom to different levels of brightness.
The shampoos, soaps, and other amenities are issued by Thann, which is common in Marriott properties in the US and Asia. We brought our own amenities, but I’ve used Thann before and thought they were of good quality so you should be covered if you don’t have your own.
The toilet and shower walls are made up of privacy glass and come with two swinging doors that swing both in and out.
The toilet area is very big.
And the shower area is pretty spacious as well. I had no issues whatsoever with water pressure or hot water as can sometimes happen in the Caribbean, even at large resorts and hotels. I’d recommend pointing the shower head toward the wall though because there’s no raised flooring to keep the water from spreading onto the bathroom floor.
The Junior Suite
The room is labeled as a “Junior Suite” but it is designed more like an extra large corner room, since junior suites often come with partitions. Yet, it still feels much like a junior suite due to all of the space and the views that the wrap-a-round balcony offers. With the curtains closed, the room is pretty simple but still elegant, with hard floors and again tons of room.
The king bed was a little firm but still very comfortable. The room stayed a little warm at first but by closing the curtains and turning down the temperature, you should be able to keep the room very cold if that is your preference. On each side of the bed, there are reading lamps and larger lamps, along with power outlets.
There’s a nice work station near the windows with some tropical artwork hanging on the wall. I noticed some input jacks there that might allow you to hook up electronics, but I didn’t try them out so I’m not sure exactly what their function was.
The office chair is comfortable and if you ever need a quick cool down from being outside, roll the chair out to in front of the bed, and the AC’s cool stream will hit you square in the forehead and give you a break from the heat.
There’a also a 42-inch LCD TV which sits up on top of a dresser. We didn’t try out the TV while there but it does come with popular networks, such as HBO, ESPN, and CNN.
The furniture in the room is pretty simple but it’s nice to have an area to relax when ordering room service and the set-up was perfect for that.
And now for the best part of the room: the view.
The Junior Suite transforms when you when you pull the curtains back and the floor to ceiling windows reveal a brilliant view of the turquoise ocean and lush palm trees.
During the early afternoon, the sun hits the water and creates vibrant blue and green colors in the ocean that make this the corner suite ideal for views. You get to look out and watch palm trees sway in the wind as kite surfers and parasailers soar in the distance. I’ve stayed in some rooms with great Caribbean views, but I’ve rarely been able to look out a corner room through floor to ceiling windows at such a mesmerizing view. And that’s what makes these suites special.
The floor to ceiling windows also let in a ton of natural light into the room, making the room feel much more wide open and relaxing.
There’s a single swinging door pictured below (on the left) that gives you access to the balcony, so if your curtains are closed up, you can still easily get out.
The long wrap-a-round balcony adds a whole new dimension to the room and adds 200 square feet. It’s a great way to soak in the views of Palm Beach. A lot of activities like jet-skiing, parasailing, paddle-boating, and other activities take place right in front of the hotel so even if you’re not joining in on the fun, it’s still fun just to watch from your balcony.
Here are some photos from our view from the fourth floor.
The balcony gives you views of both the ocean and the resort’s main pool area.
On the side facing the ocean, you have a table with two chairs to relax on. For every level below the top level, you’ve got extra shade from the balcony above you. Also, Aruba is known for its windy conditions, which often create a blissful temperature out on a shaded balcony even on a hot and humid summer day.
On the balcony side facing the resort, there are two lounge chairs which are perfect for relaxing in the shade.
In the evening, it felt even better to be outside as the breezes blew in from the ocean. During the Caribbean summer you often have to sweat it out at night, but due to the wind you could actually feel great while outside.
Another huge plus for this hotel and these rooms is that they all face west so that the sun sets right in front of you. This is an ideal time to be out on your balcony and watch the Sun dip below the horizon. If you’re in search of something romantic, this is perfect.
Our first night there, we caught a magnificent sunset.
The resort’s pool lights also add their own ambient touch to the scenery at night. Although you can’t see it in the photo below, they continuously change colors throughout the night.
The views of the beach and evening sunsets from the 4th floor were fantastic. But the views are from the top floor are even more dramatic.
Here are some shots of the view from a junior suite on the 8th floor at the Aruba Marriott Resort. They are absolutely incredible, and I heard that they look even better at different times of the year as the water changes color.
From up there, you can really see everything that’s going on down on the ocean like the kite surfers and paddle boaters seen below (on the right).
The only drawback to the very top floor is that there’s no shade above you, so it can get hotter. That can be great if you want to do a lot of sun tanning but could be an issue if you wanted a cooler experience while out on the balcony.
The Junior Suites start off around $488 for Marriott member rates during the off season but can also be redeemed for 45,000 Marriott points. During peak season (the winter), the prices climb towards $930 per night. I made my initial booking through Bonwi.com and earned over 15,000 points for about $150 back on a two night booking.
I love hotel rooms that offer something unique. Sometimes that’s the design of the room, sometimes it’s the furniture, and other times it’s the view. In this case, both the design (with floor to ceiling windows) combined with the magnificent view set this hotel room apart from many others that I’ve stayed at. It’s both gorgeous and romantic and can serve as the perfect room for a couple’s getaway to paradise in Aruba.
UponArriving has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. UponArriving and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.
Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. His content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.