View All Hotels in Oranjestad

A1 Apartments Aruba 2.0

Oranjestad, Aruba

Enter Dates for Best Prices

Expedia.com
Hotels.com
Booking.com

Review Summary

Photos and Review by

Pros

  • Within a 10-minute walk of downtown Oranjested's attractions
  • Air-conditioned rooms have full kitchens and Smart TVs
  • Thoughtful little extras like salt-and-pepper shakers and Netflix
  • Bus terminal (for access to Surfside Beach) within a 10-minute walk 
  • Sunny open-air common space with couches, tables, and chairs
  • Free self-parking and free Wi-Fi 
  • Small on-site mini-mart selling practical items

Cons

  • Few on-site amenities: no pool or restaurant
  • Decor throughout is dated and mismatched
  • Rooms are interior-facing and a bit dark
  • Bathrooms are tiny
  • Wi-Fi can be spotty

Bottom Line

With its hospitable owners and charmingly mismatched style, the value A1 Apartments offer an authentic and homey slice of Aruba. Its seven rooms are air-conditioned units with full kitchens, shared terraces, and flat-screen Smart TVs. Decor is dated, however, and reflects its budget status. There are also no extra features on-site. Still, the well-equipped rooms make this a solid, affordable choice for long-term travelers or those who want to be within walking distance of downtown Oranjested. Another alternative to consider is the nearby Camacuri Residences with brighter, modern suites, an on-site pool, and a location closer to Surfside Beach. 

Oyster Awards

Flights for this trip with Skyscanner.com

Oyster Hotel Photos

Oyster Hotel Review

Scene

Apartment-style hotel with the feeling of a cozy, private home

This property appears fairly basic from the street as a low yellow building lined with white railings. However, once inside, it feels more like a ramshackle grandma's house than a hotel. The lobby, for instance, is a small sitting room piled with personal trinkets, potted plants, and family pictures. These touches can either be eclectic and charming or dumpy and unfashionable, depending on perspective. Besides the downstairs lobby, the common area in the upstairs terrace is another breezy and welcoming space for relaxing. It’s partially covered and has a hammock and couches as well as scattered small tables and chairs. 

Ingrid and Stanley, the couple who runs the laid-back A1 Apartments, are known for their sweet, welcoming nature. Former  guests, often families and budget travelers, rave about the way the owners have welcomed them and gone the extra mile, such as loaning out their car, cell phones, and occasionally making an informal breakfast. While their little property is not without decorative charm, the Caribbean hospitality is what makes the place worth revisiting. 

Location

Located a 10-minute walk to downtown Oranjested; near a bus station

A1 Apartments is on a charming, narrow residential street in Oranjested, a neighborhood with a healthy mix of tourists and locals. It’s just 10 minutes on foot to downtown Oranjested, where there are various restaurants, bars, and shops. Mini-marts and a grocery store are also within a five-minute walk, while the bus stop is around 10 minutes away on foot. 

The nearest beach is Drulf Beach, which is five minutes away by car. There's also a handful of other beaches nearby: Surfside Marina (which also offers beachfront restaurants and bars) is about eight minutes by car, while Eagle and Palm Beaches are both about a 10-minute drive. 

Farther afield, the California Lighthouse is a 23-minute drive, and Bubali Bird Sanctuary is 10 minutes by car. The luxury waterfront Renaissance Mall, with shopping and a Starbucks, is about a five-minute drive. The international airport is just 10 minutes by car. 

Rooms

Apartment units with kitchenettes, Netflix, and mismatched decor

There are only seven, air-conditioned apartment-style suites here: three studios, three one-bedroom units, and one large room. Each unit has a kitchenette with a coffeemaker, microwave, full-size refrigerator, and stovetop camping burners, as well as utensils and other useful cooking items. There are also some thoughtful extras, like salt-and-pepper shakers, coffee filters, and dish detergent. Flat-screen Smart TVs with Netflix are in all rooms -- a boon for a budget property -- and Wi-Fi is free, though it's reportedly a bit spotty. 

Decor is far from sparse -- each corner is filled with cheerful items -- though the ceramic lamps and faux flowers are far from upscale. While the tropical colors, pastels, and wood furniture don't match, they make for a cozy vibe. Gently used, mismatched towels and furniture that was likely acquired piecemeal enhance the eclectic appeal (though some travelers will no doubt find this off-putting). Units have either king- or queen-size beds and sofa beds, with the option of adding bunk beds. There's a good amount of storage space. 

All of the rooms face an interior hallway and open to a shared terrace with cushioned seating. Some rooms are relatively dark, despite having several windows. The bathrooms are tiny, but clean, with stall showers and (in most) little counter space. Decor is simple and sweet: white tile and floral-patterned shower curtains. A personal key upon check-in ensures privacy at all times of night.

Features

Semi-covered upstairs terrace and tiny mini-mart, but little else

A1 Apartments Aruba offers little in the way of features. There's no pool and no restaurant or bar on-site. Occasionally, the owners will offer a breakfast, but it's not typically included in the stay. The owners do offer a welcome drink such as coffee. There’s a lovely, semi-covered terrace upstairs that's furnished with a hammock, tables and chairs, and some comfy couches. The hotel has a tiny mini-mart, too, with essentials like matches and bug spray. Wi-Fi, though spotty, is free, as is the on-site parking. 

Customers Who Viewed A1 Apartments Aruba Also Viewed

Things You Should Know About A1 Apartments Aruba

Address

Pagaaistraat 5, Aruba, Oranjestad, Caribbean

Like Us on Facebook! You'll Be Glad You Did