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Aruba Airport Authority N.V.

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Aruba Celebrates a Century of Aviation Excellence: A Historic Milestone Unveiled on August 18, 2023

Aruba reached new heights on August 18, 2023, as it celebrated a remarkable achievement - a century of aviation. This significant date marks 100 years since the landing of the Curtiss-H116 at Paardenbaai Port, Oranjestad, Aruba, a significant moment that initiated the start of the island's thriving tourism industry.

Since the launch of commercial flights in 1934, carrying just six passengers between Aruba and Curacao, to the evolution of a cutting-edge gateway, connecting Aruba to over 30 cities and facilitating more than 40 non-stop services, aviation in Aruba has thrived. The industry has seamlessly integrated into the island’s economy, making Aruba one of the most popular tourism destinations in the Caribbean.

A Commemoration of Remarkable Achievements

To honor this milestone, various events were organized. In collaboration with local partners, Aruba Airport introduced a remarkable 10-meter-tall public art installation at Linear Park, paying homage to the landing of the first sea plane a century ago.

The festivities also included the minting of a specially crafted silver commemorative collector's coin. The celebrations culminated with a ceremony designating the "Dakota Building," one of Aruba's earliest airport terminals operational from June 1942 to March 1950, as a historical monument. This building now stands as a living tribute to the past, present, and future of Aruba's aviation legacy.

Honoring the Visionaries

In a heartfelt tribute to the visionaries behind Aruba's aviation success, 13 exceptional pioneers were acknowledged during the celebrations, showcasing their pivotal contributions that paved the way for the thriving aviation industry that defines Aruba today.

The aviation industry in Aruba will continue its upward trajectory, with Aruba Airport dedicated to seeking new opportunities to enhance its global reach and further expanding its horizons.

For more insights into Aruba's rich aviation history and the celebratory events, please visit our website at