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Standing watch over the Curaçao harbor, this 14-story, 252-room resort rises from the waterside ramparts of a colonial fort built in the 1700s. An aerial view reveals why this is the only hotel in the region with marine collision insurance: The Plaza hugs the shoreline of a finger of coastal peninsula, with little between it and Venezuela but the big blue Caribbean Sea. If location is key, you can hardly do better. The Plaza is just a stroll from Willemstad's top historic attractions, restaurants, and shops. If that doesn't suffice, the hotel complex itself is a small village of restaurants, bars, shops, and a casino. The Plaza dates from 1954, and despite complaints that the hotel and rooms feel somewhat anachronistic, everything is well-maintained, and room renovations are underway. The big lobby is sunny and sweeping.