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Solar Villa 2.5

Oranjestad, Aruba

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Bright, welcoming rooms include mini-fridges and flat-screen TVs
  • One-Bedroom Apartments offer kitchens and sofa beds
  • Intimate hotel with cheery contemporary design throughout
  • Courtyard with rectangular pool, lounge chairs, hammocks, and weight-lifting machine
  • Quiet, residential location
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout
  • Free self-parking
  • Breakfast is available (for a fee)

Cons

  • No direct beach access
  • A 20-minute walk to the nearest shopping and dining hub
  • No on-site restaurant, and breakfast is an additional fee
  • Queen and King Rooms run small

Bottom Line

Solar Villa is a two-and-half-pearl hotel a short drive from downtown Oranjestad. The hotel’s seven guest rooms are quaint and colorful, with some featuring kitchens, sofa beds, and separate living areas. The dining and entertainment of downtown Oranjestad is a 20-minute walk away, and the beaches are even farther, making this hotel best for guests with their own transport or those who don’t mind relying on the bus to get around. Budget travelers might also want to consider Beach House Aruba, which offers the same intimate ambiance along with easier access to the beach.

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Scene

Charming and homey guest house with cheery, colorful decor

With just seven rooms laid out around an attractive central courtyard, Solar Villa exudes a low-key, peaceful atmosphere. The bold yellow building exterior complements the courtyard’s shimmering blue pool and green plants. Especially discerning guests might notice buzzing fans and bits of sloppy paint work here and there, but those seeking a cozy, home-away-from-home are likely to be pleased. In terms of its location and decor, Solar VIlla represents a 180 from the mega resorts in the area, and it attracts couples and families looking for an intimate stay.

Location

Secluded location in a residential area, just outside downtown Oranjestad

Solar Villa is set on a quiet back road, a 20-minute walk or short bus ride from buzzing downtown Oranjestad, packed with shops, bars, and restaurants. It's not walking distance to the beach, but Eagle Beach and Palm Beach are a 10-minute drive away. Arashi Beach, Malmok Beach, and the California Lighthouse can be reached in about 20 minutes by car. Queen Beatrix International Airport is a 12-minute drive away.

Rooms

Bright, homey rooms with flat-screen TVs and mini-fridges

Guest rooms at Solar Villa are cheerful and inviting. Queen and King Rooms are small, but all rooms are big on personality with lime green accent walls and zigzagging bedspreads. Decorated with delightfully kitschy lighthouse lamps and artwork with inspirational quotes, rooms have the feel of a quirky friend’s guest room. All include flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and little baskets filled with welcome candies and snacks. One-Bedroom Apartments feature separate living areas with sofa beds, dining tables, and kitchen areas. They also have kitchens with stoves, full-size refrigerators, and cookware. Simple bathrooms include colorful shower curtains and dispensers stocked with shampoo and shower gel. Reed diffusers sit on small countertops. 

Features

Serene garden courtyard with outdoor swimming pool

The hotel's star feature is its pleasant courtyard with a lovely lap pool, trees, and potted plants. Decorations ranging from stone Buddhas to Southwest-style sun art give the courtyard the same friendly, informal feel as the guest rooms. The pool is surrounded by patio tables and lounge chairs with comfy cushions. A raised platform at one end features two hammocks and more lounge chairs set under a shelter supported by graceful pillars. A single weight-lifting machine is designated as the hotel’s “mini-gym.” Free self-parking is offered on site, and free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property. Breakfast is available, for a fee, but there's no full restaurant serving other meals.

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Address

Driemasterstraat 40, Oranjestad, Caribbean

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