The Dive Bar Tourist stumbled upon Gleny’s Corner one evening, while looking for another place in Aruba, and had to stop in. This dive should come with an epilepsy warning. The flashing lights are visible for a block, making Gleny’s look more like a carnival sideshow than a bar.
Also adding to the carnival feel is the glaring black-and-white striped exterior. Don’t bother searching for this place on the internet! They have a Facebook page under the name “Glenis Corner” which hasn’t been updated since 2014, and that is it. It’s nearly impossible for a business to fly so far under the radar these days. No Trip Advisor reviews? No Yelp reviews?
It seems a little suspicious…or maybe it’s just what you’d expect from a classic dive!
This bar sits four or five blocks from the main road downtown, but it seems like it’s in a whole other universe from the high-end jewelry shops and tourist bars. All you need to do is hear names like “Iguana Joe’s” and “Lucy’s Retired Surfer Bar” to know exactly what kind of atmosphere to expect.
A bar called “Gleny’s Corner” could be anything! Luckily for The Dive Bar Tourist, it proved to be a shady and confusing spot. Upon entering, expect to be met with the internationally-recognizable—yet indescribable—dive bar smell that lets you know you’re in the right place. The regulars are primarily Venezuelans and Dominicans who are there to dance to the local music.
The night The Dive Bar Tourist wandered in, the bar was being manned by a friendly bartender named Fernando. In Aruba, the small, 6 oz beers are often bought by the bucket. Fernando left an opener attached to a frayed, potentially finger-sticking, cable on the bar and his job was done! (Don’t worry; The Dive Bar Tourist was not harmed in the making of this adventure. DBT used the can opener on the side of the bucket.)
There were absolutely no tourists present during the Dive Bar Tourist’s visit to this not-so-fine establishment. Even the locals don’t seem to know (or want to tell) about it! When asking them about the place, DBT was unable to find anyone who knew about it, despite Gleny’s close proximity to the main strip of Oranjestad.
The action picked up after a few hours of drinking. The male patrons developed a system of sniffing out the women who wanted to dance by waiting until they asked a certain (dive bar) tourist to dance and then immediately cutting in.
The Dive Bar Tourist got the hint and decided it was time to move on! Luckily, this place is one of few dives that is not cash-only—except the credit card machine may not always connect.
Despite an offer to run to the ATM, the kind proprietor of Gleny’s Corner settled DBT’s bill for $25 less than the check.
If you’re in Aruba and want a true dive bar experience, Gleny’s Corner is the place to go!
Fair warning: Gleny’s is not for the faint of heart. Only enter this psychedelic zebra of a building if you are a true dive bar aficionado who appreciates the diviest of dives.
Location: Oranjestad, Aruba
Be sure to try: keeping the door in sight at all times