Lately, I’ve been joking that I don’t like to get on a plane unless I get to use my passport. Everyone’s travel style is different, but for me, the lure of foreign cultures -  infused, of course, with a healthy dose of luxury – is my idea of a great trip.
Last December, I visited Aruba, and was in my element because the polyglot of cultures – Dutch, French, British, Spanish, Papiamento, and a slew of others – colliding on the island was my idea of heaven.

I stayed at the Bucuti Beach Resort in their recently renovated Tara Beach Suites. All rooms are oceanfront one-bedroom suites and come with a terrace or balcony and a decent-sized living area with a wet bar, but for me, the best part were the private palapa huts right on the beach. A palapa hut is a variation of a thatched tiki hut, and at Bucuti you can camp out all day if you want and you’re never too far from the water, or an attentive waiter who will bring you a variety of tropical drinks – a pina colada, one for each hand if you want – all day.

There are 36 suites and four penthouses in the Tara wing, and even though the Suites are part of Bucuti, they’re set apart from the main resort, and guests enjoy the convenience of a private reception area, concierge, a lounge where a tropical breakfast is served only to Tara guests each morning, and access to spa facilities on the premises.

I also spent a good amount of time hanging out on the balcony because sometimes you just gotta get out of the sun. The rest of the time, I explored the island, including Arikok National Park, the Aruba Aloe Factory, and we took a snorkeling trip with the premier cruise company Tranquillo.