Once we hit the pool... ...the trials of the last two years washed away. Our first trip to Aruba - to celebrate my husband's 60th birthday - and we couldn't have had a better experience. The owners and staff were warm, kind and generous with help and advice. Their Dutch background lent a European feel to the accommodations. Even the fellow guests, a varied, international group, were welcoming and helpful. Conveniently located, we took a mere 10-minute drive up the road to greet the sunrise at the lighthouse. Across the street, the turquoise sea. Where else would you be invited to the owner's poolside birthday party? Should we return to Aruba, there is no doubt as to where we will be staying.