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Old Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, 05:01 PM
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Default A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

by chaleco111 on Wed Jun 30, 2010 2:58 pm

Several days ago, some associates of mine were in a discussion about the RITZ CARLTON and the pros and cons of this project. Since the "pro-RITZ" group sort of puttered out, they came up with one last point for their cause. It was that the new hotel will bring a "Better class of visitor" to our island. He went on to say that the RITZ CARLTON guest was from a different "Ilk". --- Interesting word (ILK) and interesting point of view.

Here is my take on it:
Aruba and its' tourism grew from the common person that was looking for a home away from home. Yes, there were very rich folks that came here and they still do, however they do not come here to be rich. If they did, we would look different. No simple Wacky Wahoo - good food places - no - we would have limos taking the visitors to the SCALA or some such rot. I am willing to bet that the rich come here to get away from being rich.

Give me the people that will drink a beer at sun set and smile as they think about the folks back home. Give me the family that really had to save to make it down here. I'll take the common guy that not only has never been to a RITZ but (even better) doesn't miss the experience and does not give a Ritz (Pun intended) if he ever does. Aruba is now a MECA for repeat visitors unlike anywhere else within the II or RCI systems. People want to come and be a part of the way we are now.

Did you know that families have come here with their kids.
Did you know that those kids looked at each other and fell in love
Those same dewy eyed kids got married and had kids of their own kids
That last group of kids now come to Aruba every year to be with their friends

We have become something slightly different than many other destinations. We are a loosely knit family that is tightly bound during the week to our vacationing "friend-relatives" . And this has worked just fine and a different "ILK" or the place to house them, is really not needed.

Aruba is all about the people on this BB and the many others like it. There seems to exist a true fear of not being in touch with each other. Can you imagine this BB or any other one having as a topic "My martini was not dry enough"

Balashi comes in cans and is pretty damned good

Trust me on that

be well
charles
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Old Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, 05:12 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Bravo, well said. Why don't they take the Ritz and shove it and the different "ilk" they'll attract on an island of their own. Leave us "commoners" alone. I don't think Aruba wants or needs different ilk. Our ilk is just fine, thank you. The Ritz is the Pits.
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Old Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, 05:46 PM
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I Love Aruba Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Quote:
Originally Posted by roschone View Post
Bravo, well said. Why don't they take the Ritz and shove it and the different "ilk" they'll attract on an island of their own. Leave us "commoners" alone. I don't think Aruba wants or needs different ilk. Our ilk is just fine, thank you. The Ritz is the Pits.
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Old Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, 06:29 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

charles, you have been missed. nice to see you return with a vengeance.

when that 'ilk' becomes the typical aruban tourist, there will be a mass exodus of all of the people that make aruba the wonderful place that it is. that would include 99% of the people on this forum.
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Old Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, 06:34 PM
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One Happy Island Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Aruba doesn't have to be "Puttin' on the Ritz" for anyone, in my book! We've been extremely happy with the way things have been....even before the Riu!!
There is something for everyone already; no need to change that. But, I guess the 'powers that be' feel differently. As far as we are concerned, the Hyatt, Marriott, Renaissance and Westin cover all the bases, as do the many wonderful lo rise (time share properties). "Puttin' on the Ritz" isn't really necessary at all!!
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Old Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, 10:01 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

There is much truth in Charles' words. But, Aruba and all of us should be careful. There are many Caribbean destinations that have already priced themselves into the "ilk-only" price range. Playgrounds of the Rich and Famous make their incomes from the very few who can afford to spend very much. The rest of us can please stay home.
Aruba has always served the unwashed masses as well as the perfumed aristocracy, making a living from volume as well as exclusivity.
However, I am hearing more negatives about the costs associated with an Aruban vacation. It starts with "gotcha" airlines prices that rob the captive timeshare owners. New taxes and fees take some burden from Arubans by shifting it to tourists. Tourist don't vote. Unfortunately, they just don't return when prices go too high.
If hotel room price jumps, annual fees, special assessments, taxes and fees are added to the high costs of all imported goods, Aruba will be losing the "Balashi on the Beach" vacationer.
I wonder what the "ilk" drink?
Bravo Charles! Point well made.
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Old Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, 10:51 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

I live in Naples Florida and we have 2 Ritz Carltons in our beach town. I come to Aruba to get away from the people that think they have a since of entitlement. I am one that has saved for the last year to come to Aruba, we have missed it the last 2 years because of the economy. People always ask, why Aruba? My answer is because I can be myself, I can go out to dinner dressed how I want without feeling the need to impress anyone or be turned away because I don't look good enough. Our beaches and hotels are just as nice and if I really wanted to I could convince myself that every weekend I am on vacation living in paradise here but it is not the same. I leave in less than 48hrs and I cannont wait, we have rented a house and Jeep this year to do things we never have before. Usually we rent at the Marriotts and park ourselves on the beach every year, take the occasional horse back ride and parasail but that is it. This year we are looking forward to expanding our horizons. If anyone one has any ideas on what to do with a man that is really anxious about not sitting on Palm Beach all week, I welcome them. This is our 7th year and we have never been out of the highrise area!!!
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Old Thursday, July 1st, 2010, 07:49 AM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Aruba is an amazing island to take a jeep and explore! It has so many diverse places to see. I often think about how much people miss out by staying at the hotels only because it is such a beautiful place.

I love the tourists of Aruba. It's not 'girls gone wild' and very family oriented. Sure you get your share of tourists who might be rude but
you can't avoid that. I think Aruba has it's prices just right. It's not
cheap so the kids can't just fly in to party. I love how as others have stated that people who come here have been coming for years and have passed it on to their families. It's safe and has the option of the high and low rises depending on your taste.

I just moved to the Naples area and having lived in other 'high class' neighborhoods in NJ can tell you that just because people have money does not mean they are better behaved or even better dressed. Actually it seems to be the exact opposite. People with with money (in general) seem to be cheaper at times and seem to be unhappy with something... be it service, price or they didn't get exactly what they wanted.... JMO - no flaming please!!

So I say - "Mr Marriott tear down that wall! Stop destroying a special spot in Aruba that means so much to it's people, wildlife and environment!"
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Old Thursday, July 1st, 2010, 09:39 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Please tell me there will always be more of "us" than "them" - I'm starting to get depressed about our future here. I NEED to know that Aruba will always be in our lives. Maybe we need to send the message that we're all here to STAY, and no stinking high-falootin' Ritz S*h*i*t*s are going to drive us out! Maybe they'll all just stay in their glitzy world holed up in an over-the-top monstrosity of a building and we'll NEVER have to even SEE them. Or maybe, and boy is this a stretch, maybe they'll come around to our way of thinking and become tourists of our "ilk". Maybe they'll like the way we are and want to be like us. It could happen, right? Right?
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Old Thursday, July 1st, 2010, 10:31 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

ro, i wouldn't worry about them. for now we are safe. if in the future they take over, then there will be other places and times. the world evolves and as it does we evolve with it. aruba has my heart but it won't if our ilk isn't accepted. i honestly can't picture that happening because the arubans would not be happy with the others.

Quote:
Originally Posted by roschone View Post
Please tell me there will always be more of "us" than "them" - I'm starting to get depressed about our future here. I NEED to know that Aruba will always be in our lives. Maybe we need to send the message that we're all here to STAY, and no stinking high-falootin' Ritz S*h*i*t*s are going to drive us out! Maybe they'll all just stay in their glitzy world holed up in an over-the-top monstrosity of a building and we'll NEVER have to even SEE them. Or maybe, and boy is this a stretch, maybe they'll come around to our way of thinking and become tourists of our "ilk". Maybe they'll like the way we are and want to be like us. It could happen, right? Right?
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Old Friday, July 2nd, 2010, 11:27 AM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Sherry, once again, thanks for reeling me in.
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Old Friday, July 2nd, 2010, 12:40 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Never stayed at a Ritz...probably won't.
Retired almost 8 years and consider ourselves lucky that we can still afford an Aruba trip each year...our 20-something visit happens in September.
Financially, we're not in the snooty class. Our lifestyle in Florida is even more casual than it ever was when we lived in NY...Aruba is an extension of that. Never been to those few restaurants in Aruba that had a dress code.
If other people want and can afford a "Ritz-lifestyle", it's fine with me. Just don't bother me or look down at me. I guess I'd prefer a limit to new building, but I really don't have a vote.
Aruba has changed over 20+ years, but I still find it great for a vacation in my style.
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Old Friday, July 2nd, 2010, 01:59 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

When I originally wrote this, I could never have guessed at the response and interest it would receive. I am grateful that it did.

Will we be able to stop the Ritz? Almost for 100% the answer is no. HOWEVER, allow me to share the following with you.

When my daughter Shauna, (now a mom and made me a grandpa) was much younger, she dated this one guy that I found to be a jerk. Only thing he ever did that I liked is that he proved me right. Anyway, he was an eventuality, however I never hid it from him that I did not like him. It was not a secret. He was moving into my turf to mow my lawn with a TORO mower and I did not approve. He knew it from day one. They eventually got married and then not.

In that experience, as it touched me, there was an honesty and a truth that made life bearable when he was within miles of me. It was clean, clear, honest and up front.

Yeah, the Ritz will most probably end up here, but Mr. Marriott know this - "If my behavior was good enough for my daughter, then it is good enough for you" I sure wish you were not going to infest our island.

That said

be well
charles
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Old Saturday, July 3rd, 2010, 12:32 PM
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Smile Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Quote:
Originally Posted by charlescroes View Post
When I originally wrote this, I could never have guessed at the response and interest it would receive. I am grateful that it did.

Will we be able to stop the Ritz? Almost for 100% the answer is no. HOWEVER, allow me to share the following with you.

When my daughter Shauna, (now a mom and made me a grandpa) was much younger, she dated this one guy that I found to be a jerk. Only thing he ever did that I liked is that he proved me right. Anyway, he was an eventuality, however I never hid it from him that I did not like him. It was not a secret. He was moving into my turf to mow my lawn with a TORO mower and I did not approve. He knew it from day one. They eventually got married and then not.

In that experience, as it touched me, there was an honesty and a truth that made life bearable when he was within miles of me. It was clean, clear, honest and up front.

Yeah, the Ritz will most probably end up here, but Mr. Marriott know this - "If my behavior was good enough for my daughter, then it is good enough for you" I sure wish you were not going to infest our island.

That said

be well
charles
This new fancy hotel for the elite will only have a few hundred rooms, so there wont be a major problem with snobs. It probably will not achieve 100% occupancy either. The clientelle the Ritz is looking for are more interested in St Barts or one of the BVI exclusive resorts than Aruba. These people will not find the level of pampering they are looking for when they come. It may be a good thing for some of them. They may actually find out they enjoy less pampering and more freedom.
We love Aruba for what it is, a great place to relax and enjoy life with friends and family or just by ourselves.
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Old Saturday, July 3rd, 2010, 01:23 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

I don't think adding a high-end resort is bad in itself. As stated, it can only add a few more guests and will provide a few more jobs. What would be unfortunate, would be seeing the island evolve into a rich persons only destination, as have some other places in the Caribbean.
Fortunately for us, there are enough properties in place that will probably remain reasonable and continue to court the Balashi crowd that has paid their bills for so many years.
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Old Sunday, July 4th, 2010, 03:43 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh


I will basically use the same answer as I did on the other board and add a little

Since I am a Low Riser anything that happens on Palm Beach is really not my concern. I am on Eagle beach for choice and I am very happy with that choice. Plus I am also into AI so I wonder what they think of us that enjoy that part. I guess we are just Trailer park visitors (strictly low rent)

But I never worry about what others think or say if they are not paying for my vacation they really have nothing to say to me at all.

But I do wonder wasn't the Hyatt suppose to be the top High Class resort in Aruba (getting some competition). And I wonder what those who stay there would think of those at the Ritz and vice versa. The Good thing is I won't lose any sleep over it. As long as they keep that nonsense in the High Rise section.
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Old Tuesday, July 6th, 2010, 09:35 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Ritz v. Hyatt.....FOOD FIGHT.......picture that! Caviar and king crab legs flying about; Dom Perignon all over the floor.....I'll stick with Smokey Joe's and Tomato Charlie's. Another thought...can you see the people of that "ilk" at Charlie's Bar in SN? And encountering the car wash boys in their Hummer rentals. The Aruba I know will never die because it's in my heart; and the hearts of my children.

This year, when we return to the USA, we will have an Aruban visitor with us- my 14 year old daughter befriended Mikha from Noord on the Mi Dushi when she was 7 and they are very close friends. We are good friends with Mikha's parents and they are letting 15 year old Mikha come to stay at our house in MA for 3 weeks. Does that happen in St. Bart's? Or Anguilla?

I'd say Aruba, and its people, are of our ilk. And if it takes a few of their ilk to travel to Aruba to get an ilking, so be it. I'm betting in a few years the Ritz will be bought out by The Mill!
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Old Tuesday, July 6th, 2010, 09:44 PM
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Default Re: A BETTER CLASS OF TOURISTS?? naaahhh

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnL View Post
Ritz v. Hyatt.....FOOD FIGHT.......picture that! Caviar and king crab legs flying about; Dom Perignon all over the floor.....I'll stick with Smokey Joe's and Tomato Charlie's. Another thought...can you see the people of that "ilk" at Charlie's Bar in SN? And encountering the car wash boys in their Hummer rentals. The Aruba I know will never die because it's in my heart; and the hearts of my children.

This year, when we return to the USA, we will have an Aruban visitor with us- my 14 year old daughter befriended Mikha from Noord on the Mi Dushi when she was 7 and they are very close friends. We are good friends with Mikha's parents and they are letting 15 year old Mikha come to stay at our house in MA for 3 weeks. Does that happen in St. Bart's? Or Anguilla?

I'd say Aruba, and its people, are of our ilk. And if it takes a few of their ilk to travel to Aruba to get an ilking, so be it. I'm betting in a few years the Ritz will be bought out by The Mill!
You are so right John. We too have hosted visitors from Aruba in our home - so much fun to have them here. Every single person who met them loved them, and every single person they met they loved. We took them to the Empire State building, Statue of Liberty, Chinatown and we weren't the only ones that they visited either. They stayed up in New Hampshire with other people they met from the U.S. And others from Boston. I would rather have them as house guests than some of my own family. Hell, they ARE family.
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