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In Aruba, the Beach, the Palms and the Perfect Caribbean Boutique Hotel 

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A plunge-pool casita at Aruba's Boardwalk Boutique Hotel.

“It’s like Narnia once you come through the gates,” Trisha tells me. 

And she’s right. 

The moment you walk through the gates and past the sparkling lobby at the Boardwalk Boutique Hotel in Aruba, it’s as if you’re manuevered into some kind of space-time portal to find yourself in a leafy, lush, tropical jungle filled with pools and palms and colorful casitas. 

The Boardwalk, home to 46 casitas in a setting just across from Palm Beach in Aruba, is nothing short of a marvel in its own right, a meticulously-run, lovingly-appointed hotel that exemplifies the best in boutique hospitality. 

The family-run hotel on the grounds of a former coconut plantation now in its fourth decade of operation (it began life as a retreat for windsurfers), does everything well, with a guest-focused, innovation-heavy approach that should be a lesson for the rest of the region.

lobby at boardwalk
The lobby.

It’s one of those hotels that manages to achieve a transcendent kind of gestalt, where luxury is delivered in an unpretentious, always sunny package. 

It’s pervasive, palpable while you’re here, the easiness of everything, the calm, the endless comfort. The grounds are manicured just so, the rooms sleek and bright; the outdoor showers delicious. The new on-site restaurant, the Coco Cafe, is outstanding, perched a few steps from the quiet pool. 

One of the 46 casitas.

If you need tips on where to go or what do, you can talk to one of the team members like the aforementioned Trisha Reinkemeyer, who works in marketing and guest expreience for the hotel.

It all adds up to a perfectly executed hospitality experience, as good as you’ll find anywhere in the Caribbean, and that’s something we wouldn’t throw around lightly. 

But the luxury here is really in the details. 

aruba outdoor
An outdoor shower in one of the casitas.

The way the TV spins around to switch places with the mirror; how when you reserve your beach palapa your name is hand-painted on a wooden sign; murals in the rooms; the honor-bar grab-and-go in the lobby; the pop-up cocktail cart that shows up at the pool at happy hour every day; 

These kinds of little touches only deepen the enjoyment of an experience rooted in the unique natural environment that’s been cultivated in typically, dry, hot Aruba. 

pool in aruba
The “quiet” pool at the Boardwalk, a haven for afternoon naps and good books.

Whether you’re on the porch of your casita or tucked away in the corner of a pool, you’ll find abundant shade, cool breezes and the intoxicating sound of birdsong. 

When you find the urge to leave the hotel, which, you will quickly find, is easier said than done, you can make a trek on the little shuttle to the hotel’s own beach club, with exclusive chairs and palapas right on the white sands of Palm Beach. Even better? You can order food and drink from the adjacent Ritz-Carlton. 

happy hour
The happy hour pop-up cart.

What you begin to realize after a day or two at the Boardwalk is that its location, a few minutes from the beach, is actually an asset – you begin to look forward to returning each day to the quiet, the shade and the waving palms of this tropical oasis, walking through that metaphysical doorway. 

This is the land of the Boardwalk; all that lies between LG Smith Boulevard and the edges of the great coconut plantation on the eastern side.

“It’s all in the wardrobe, just like I told you.”

For more, visit the Boardwalk Boutique Hotel in Aruba

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