While I am not going to say anything about the cornerstone laying ceremony of November 14th at Seroe Colorado, there is a lot to say about the Ribbon Cutting at the Boardwalk Boutique Hotel on Malmok, November 15th, 2019.
Under a perfect blue sky, owners, twin-sisters Kimberly and Stephanie Rooijakkers flanked by a number of our tourism officials cut the blue shiny ribbon strung across the freeform pool into confetti, snip, snip, and the Boardwalk Boutique Hotel was open for business.
What started in 1989, when Julia de Ruiter and Geert v/d Berg transformed Plantage Tromp into a custom surfboard workshop with economic beach accommodations, is today a property like no other on the island.
Even the construction-team, at the Wrap-Up BBQ declared it to be the most beautiful project ever built in Aruba, and they should know, they are insiders.
What makes it so unusual, is the fully grown landscaping on opening day, which we rarely see. The sisters had the trees set aside years before construction started.
According to me, two principle guided the creation of the project: Aesthetics and Ethics.
Unafraid of maintenance and wear and tear, or our notorious salt air, they created beauty everywhere, throwing caution to the wind.
A tree grows in the lobby, under a skylight, and every guest must walk around it, to transverse the cathedral-ceiling lobby.
Every wall, window, gingerbread trim, light fixture and gate, are painted another bold, fantastic color.
More practical souls would never have planted a tree inside where it might shed a frond or two, and no hired-hand could keep track of the many paint numbers on the Pantone color chart, when re-touch is needed.
An ordinary developer would say: Trees, plant them outside, encased in easy-to-clean concrete, and let’s paint the whole thing white, it’s more practical that way.
At the Boardwalk Boutique Hotel, I saw zero practicality, just immense beauty, and pure design.
As for ethics. The building carry 25cm of foam insulation, and are made of the latest environmentally-friendly materials, no money spared.
Best of all, the bankers called it their Signature Project. They were proud.
The accountant who helped create the business plan called it his Signature Project, as it came in right on the dollar.
Compliments to the Female Power driving this unusual undertaking. The formidable twins. Their mentor and girlfriend Karin Swiers, designer Claudia Ruiz-Vasquez who helped create the unique Boardwalk Boutique Hotel concept and design, since 2011. A female architect from the Dominican Republic who drew the plans. Coburg’s construction supervisor Joanna Mei, who with focus and patience, set the pace, in an ordinarily male-dominated environment.
I hear the beds are heavenly, the showers super luxurious, the hammocks large enough for two, and that a boutique, light food concept is coming!