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Aruba boasts a dozen casinos, most of them large, luxurious and located within Palm Beach hotel complexes. All offer table games such as craps and Caribbean stud poker alongside hundreds of slot machines.
Stellaris Casino (LG Smith Boulevard 101) is the biggest, with 500 slot machines, 32 game tables and Aruba’s sole sports-gaming kiosks. Live bands play regularly, but head to The Occidental Grand's Las Palmas Showroom (JE Irausquin Boulevard 83) for a greater array of Aruba entertainment. Musicals such as Grease are performed there each evening.
Aruba’s rowdiest nights out are mainly found in Palm Beach, where the main promenade is packed with bars – most haunts have a DJ and stay open until 2am. Happy hour tends to be 9-10pm.
Among the best are Zombie Room (LG Smith Boulevard 54), with its tiki bar and rock music, and trendy Gusto (JE Irausquin Boulevard 348-A) – one of Aruba’s premier nightlife addresses. In Eagle Beach, Hipsz (Pos Abao z/n) has a more chilled Latin and salsa vibe.
Beach bars offer an al fresco alternative for your Aruban nights out. The Hyatt Regency Aruba’s Palms Beach Bar (JE Irausquin Boulevard 85), for instance, serves ice-cold Balashis – Aruba's beer – as the light fades. Open all day, MooMba Beach Bar & Restaurant (JE Irausquin Boulevard 230) is pleasingly liberal with the rum and peach schnapps.
In Oranjestad itself, Urwin, the barman at Shon Gecko Cocktail Lounge & Grill (Italiestraat 50), is renowned for his mixology skills. Get him to recommend something, and line your stomach with French fries coated in peanut sauce.
Nightlife in Aruba also includes various party buses and cruises. Taking to the water is Jolly Pirates: its buccaneer theme means lots of plank walking and yo-ho-ho-ing. And most importantly, there’s an open bar once you’re in.
Back on dry land, Kukoo Kunuku packs in champagne, dinner and drinks at three bars during circuits around Oranjestad in its brightly daubed ex-school bus. Be warned: you’ll be expected to do the Macarena.