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“Very nice resort” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa

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Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   6000 Rio Mar Boulevard, Rio Grande 00745, Puerto Rico   |  
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Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Rio Grande
New york
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Very nice resort”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2006

My wife and I just returned from a four day stay at the the Westin Rio Mar. We were overall pleased with the resort and the properties. When we checked in we requested an upgrade to a suite, and it was granted with a smile. Nice room with a great view no bed bugs to be found anywhere. The only negative was the congierge, every time we asked for advice on what to do, once we mentioned that we had our own car they lost interest in talking to us. I got the feeling that they were working on commision for these tours. Overall it was a great trip. I would stay there again.

  • Stayed June 2006
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,103 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (937)
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New York, NY
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2006

Me and my two friends (all women, mid-twenties) went to Puerto Rico in the middle of May. After reading previous reviews, I was very hesitant about staying at the Westin. But it ended up being GREAT!!! We ran into some bad weather, scattered thunderstorms, but we managed to get some sun. As recommended, we did not eat at the hotel (for the most part). We at the pool bar once and that was decent. Generally, we went into San Juan to eat. The Oof Restaurants are excellent! We visited the Parrot Club, Aqua Viva and Dragonfly. They were all wonderful, and I would consider myself a "foodie" from NYC. Both the service and the food were of high standards and I would highly recommend going there. We also went to the Puerto Rico Cafe, where we had seafood gumbo, which was YUMMY!

Like others, I recommend renting a car. It's very easy getting around the island and we never missed a step in our travel plans. Parking was very easy at the hotel and in Old San Juan (park in garages).

We visited the El Yunque Rainforest and loved it! If you enjoy hiking and being outdoors, this is the perfect place for you. They have quite a few trails for you to pick and is very easy to walk through. If you do enough research before you go, there is no need to go to the visitors center (you have to pay). We chose to go right to the trails and explored the area ourselves.

On one of our days, we went snorkeling on the "Spread Eagle II." The group provided snorkeling gear, lunch and complimentary drinks (alcholic and non-alcoholic) for $65. We had such a great time! The staff was very nice and we didn't run into any problems.

Our room at the Westin was very comfortable and was kept very clean throughout our stay. The concierge was very helpful in recommending local restaurants and was accomodating when it came to reserving a shuttle back to the airport for one person in our group. The check-in and check-out process was very easy. I'm not sure why the folks who gave bad reviews had such terrible experiences. I couldn't have asked for a better stay at the Westin!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NY
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2006

I thought this one one of the nicest hotels for a long weekend away from NYC... not too far and you could catch a flight late friday night to get there. The service was great, the room, beach and food were lovely but the last two nights i noticed bites on my body...... thought it was mosquito bites.............. I WAS WRONG>>>>>> BED BUG BITES!!!

TALK ABOUT A HEAVENLY BED!!! WITH BITES TO GO WITH IT!!! Wish I read the trip advisor reviews before we went....

BEWARE OF BED BUGS AT THE WESTIN RIO MAR!!!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2006

My wife and I and our 10.5 month old daughter Just returned from a 7 night stay at the Westin Rio Mar with much of our extended family and truly had an absolutely wonderful family vacation. I was nervous after reading many of the reviews...but was very pleased to find that the negative reviews were dead wrong, as was everyone on our trip! The hotel and its grounds are beautiful, the staff was extremely nice and helpful, the beach and pools perfect, our weather excellent, and the food was VERY GOOD! I do not understand the complaints of many on this point...as I thought the food was diverse and high quality.

We booked through custom classic vacations and booked the All-Inclusive Option at the Westin Rio Mar, which it sounds from many of the reviews and the complaints about high food and drink prices, that many people do not choose, perhaps because they do not realize that it is available...I'm not sure. Anyway, we found this to be the best decision we made because it allowed everyone to eat and drink as much as they wanted (and we did!) without the stress of high prices adding up! We travelled with 3 children in our group and the all-inclusive option was perfect for those travelling with little ones whose eyes are alway bigger than their stomachs.

In short we will return to the Westin and would recommend it without hesitation to anyone especially those with children who want the perfect family caribbean vacation.

Rememeber to consider the All-Inclusive Option...it will pay for itself in the end!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2006

Wow,
Just returned from a fabulous trip to Puerto Rico and the Westin Rio Mar. I cannot say enough about this resort. We were skeptical about staying here, due to some of the reviews, but are so glad we did. Upon arrival, they upgrated our room to a Ocean Suite, since it was our anniversary and because the shuttle from the hotel never showed up at the airport. We did not wait but 15 minutes and caught a cab. It was $50., but keep in mind this hotel is 19 miles away and we spent more than that from our house in Spring Texas to IAH airport. (15 miles) They took care of our luggage right away and we were given four drink tickets to use during our stay at any of the bars. Since our arrival was late, (8:30pm) there was all kinds of nightlife going on when we arrived. Music and dancing in the Main Lobby bar, a movie at the Pool with popcorn and drinks, a fire pit with Smores near the beach, a piano player in the downstairs bar, and finally a DJ next to the Casino, playing all types of music. I was totally impressed and excited. We stayed here only two nights before our Cruise and wished we had been there a couple of more days. The beach is gorgeous and the staff we so accommodating. As far as the room goes, it was large and the bed indeed was heavenly. My husband is a light sleeper and he had the best rest he has had in a long time. Thanks Westin for the wonderful weekend and for a Anniversary that will be never forgotten. Stay here and enjoy.
Cat from Spring, Tx

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, AL
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2006

My wife and I just returned from a 4 night stint at the Westin Rio Mar. We booked our room for an insanely low rate on hotwire, so we were expecting below average service and a room next to the broom closet. We could'nt have been more mistaken. Check-in was a breeze and our room was excellent (Not ocean front or ocean view, but on the first floor and overlooking a tropical lagoon that was home to the resort's iguana population). The bath was spacious and the bed was very comfortable. The rooms have very nice/new in-room safes that easily accomodate Laptop PC's and other valuables.

The hotel was not very crowded at all. Perhaps it is because this is Puerto Rico's down season. That was fine with us. It was basically "no line, no waiting" wherever we went.

The beach at the Rio Mar is beautiful. The beach is actually adjacent to the well known Luquillo beach that you may read about in travel books, etc. The Rio Mar's beach is just as picturesque. More on Luquillo later.

The pools were uncrowded and the kids stayed in the activity pool while we enjoyed a quieter time at the quiet pool. As long as you were poolside by 830-900AM there was no need to fret over getting a lounge chair. Finding chairs on the beach was never a problem.

SOME CAUTIONS: As with any other resort and as other reviews have stated, food and drink here are a rip-off. I guess the resort figures that they will make their money back on your stay by assuming you will eat there. Well, we did not. We stopped at the corner grocery (at the corner of PR 3 and 968) and stocked up on Medalla (local light beer), Cokes, and other snacks all for about $25. I kid you not in stating that this would have cost uus at least $150 at the hotel. This tip leads me to the most important tip of all...
RENT A CAR!
If you don't rent a car, be prepared to be held prisioner at this resort and held subject to their high prices. We rented a car with GPS navigation from a national chain at the San Juan airport and could have not been more glad that we did so. I cannot tell you how many hotel guests we talked to that regretted not renting a car. If you want to go off resort you are subject to the resort's shuttle bus (at a fee of course). Same goes if you want to do any daytripping.

Speaking of which, this hotel is a perfect location to day-trip from. El Yunque is literally 2 miles away, Old San Juan is approx. 45 minutes and Fajardo is about the same distance as Old San Juan. We spent a whole day in Old San Juan and had a blast. Parking is a bit difficult to find. My advice is to head straight to El Morro and park there. It may cost a bit more, but the lower cost lots are obscure and hard to find. Some places to stop by and see are El Catedral de San Juan. Not only is this a beautiful church, but Ponce de Leon is buried here. El Morro is really cool, definitely worth the $3 admission (kids get in for free I think). As far as eating goes, stopping by the El Convento Hotel (right across from the cathedral) to eat at El Picoteo is a must. The fare here is Spanish tapas. Their mojitos are excellent as well.

El Yunque is a true treasure. We spent two half days here and are glad we split it up. The first day we dedicated to La Mina falls (a must do) and the second day we dedicated to hiking to the summit of El Yunque mtn. ~3600ft. The views up here are spectactular, you can see St. Croix and St. John from up here on a clear day (we had a clear day and did see the USVI). A disclaimer is that if you are moderately physically challenged you might have a hard time hiking these trails. The trails are well kept and actually have paved mini-sidewalks to prevent trail wash out, but they are extremely steep in places. Also do not wear flip-flops or else you will slip and fall. Buy a pair of teva's before you come.

The last excursion we took was to Fajardo one evening to take the bio-bay kayaking tour in Las Cabezas de San Juan nature preserve. This experience is not to be missed. It is truly a once in a lifetime expierence. One benefit to doing the trip here is not having to take a ferry to Vieques to the Mosquito bay. See las tortugas adventures for more info. Other companies offer similar trips as well.

As far as eating goes, my advice is to be brave. Authentic Puerto Rican cuisine is a wonderful blend of Puerto Rico's cultures. It mixes Creole, with Spanish and Native cuisine to create a truly unique culinary genre. The food of Puerto Rico was the favorite part of our trip. Specifically, Don Pepe's and Antonjito's are both excellent for traditional Puerto Rican Cuisine. Both are also less than a mile from the hotel and would be suitable dinner locations. Kiosk #2 at Luquillo Beach serves tradtional PR cuisine as well and is very good. Kiosk #52 is excellent for a quick bite such as a shrimp, fish, crab or chicken fritter and other traditional PR fast food. If you rent a car, TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE LUQUILLO KIOSKS at lunch time FOR CHEAP AND EXCELLENT FOOD all in an awesome environment. Luquillo beach is right down hwy 3 from the hotel (10min drive) and you can park right in front of the kiosks and walk right up to the kiosk of your choice.

So basically, for us, the Rio Mar was a place to lay our heads, lay by the beach and pool and to take a shower. We really did not gamble or shop, but that is not why we came to PR. The casino was very unimpressive, small, etc. as others have mentioned. We came to Puerto Rico to expierence and immerse ourselves in local culture and had an excellent time doing so. The people here are extremely friendly and willing to help just as long as you are not obnoxious. We saw so many demanding an rude Americans who I think forget that they are on vacation. If you are'nt going to chill out why go on vacation at all?

Safety was never a concern for us when leaving the resort. The police are literally everywhere. Every half mile we passed a cop. If you do drive in PR, it is not any different than in the US, except the max speed limit is 50mph. Do not speed as I have heard that citations were very costly. Also one more thing, the cops drive around with their light bars on at all times so if a cop comes up behind you with its lights on just let them pass.

In closing, have fun in Puerto Rico and experience as much as you can!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new york
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
94 helpful votes 94 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2006

We stayed at the Westin Rio Mar for 5 days. You definitely need to rent a car to get there because transportation by taxi ($60-70) or by shuttle service is too expensive. Getting to the resort was not a problem--go by Rt 66, make a right at Belz Factory Outlet onto Rt 3 and you'll see the sign for the Westin on the left. However, finding the main building in the resort was difficult, especially at night. We saw all the signs telling us, "Caution: Iguana Crossing" but no clear sign directing us to the hotel. Eventually we hit a deadend and a staff member helped us out.

Check-in: Very fast, very smooth, and very patient to answer all our questions. We also had a fridge request (no extra charge) and that was brought to our room in 10 min. Self Parking is very efficient but pricey $10/day.

Room: The first thing we did was check for bedbugs after all the reviews we read about that. We were in total paranoia, but we were lucky and there were no bugs in our beds. We were on the first floor...very high ceilings. Standard room, no frills, nice balcony...comfortable. Housekeeping wasn't always reliable. There were days when we didn't get face towels, then the next we didn't get new soap. We literally walked up to the cart and picked it up ourselves because they never delivered it to our room even after we called.

Grounds: Very beautifully kept. The maintenance starts early and everything is very organized. There were plenty of towels, pool balls, lounge chairs with umbrellas around the pool. The beach is "eh", not the golden sand or clear blue water you imagine of the caribbean but it's still nicely kept. there are cabanas and plenty of lounge chairs there too. They have 2-3 jet skis, kayaks..but all for a price ($60 jet ski for 1/2 hour).

they have activities planned everyday that are listed on a bulletin board in the lobby and outside area by the pool (power walk, iguana feeding, dancing). the casino is not very large but it's still fun to just wander around. they have a very large conference room...was not able to see inside, but we did see the outside grounds set up for a wedding. The grass in that area was extremely brown, not exactly pretty. Oh..bugs galore...must wear bug spray everywhere you go.

Cannot comment on the restaurants in the hotel except for David's Cookies. We picked up something there for breakfast a couple times before going out. We mostly ate outside of the resort. We went to Las Vegas, which is en route to El Yunque on Rt 191. (El Yunque is literally across the street from Rt 968 and follow the signs to Rt 191). Isamar's bakery on the corner of Rt 968 is very good...their Cuban sandwich is really good. Along the way to Luquillo, we saw all the kiosks numbered but we didn't get to try them. We went to dinner at Sandy's Seafood, really good seafood, large portions of everything. There are plenty of fast food places around especially KFC/Taco Bell and Burger King. We also ate at Antonino's and Taco Maker along Rt 3 (east of resort). If you continue on Rt 3 to Fajardo, you'll hit a shopping plaza with sizzler, metropol, many other restaurants.

Concierge: I think this was the best part of the hotel. They have directions to everything, preprinted cards. They were very helpful. However, booking through them, especially tours looks extremely overpriced. Call the tours yourself, it's a better deal.

Around the Area: El Yunque is right across the street. Luquillo is a 5 minute Drive and is an overall nice beach. Not sure why it's rated as a great beach but, it is still a nice place to relax..Parking is $3. They have kayaks for rent there and it's only $5 per person...much much cheaper than the resort which was around the range of $45 for 1/2 hour.

Check out: bill sent to room with easy check out form. We weren't charged a 13% resort fee--maybe it's a deal they cut out with priceline. I don't know...but i'm not complaining.

Overall, this was a very enjoyable resort. It's not a 5 star resort but it was still worth visiting.

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa

Address: 6000 Rio Mar Boulevard, Rio Grande 00745, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Rio Grande
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Rio Grande
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 600
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled between the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean National Forest, The Westin Rio Mar Beach Golf Resort & Spa in Puerto Rico presents the ultimate Caribbean resort experience! This luxurious resort is secluded on a 500-acre estate framed by lush green mountains and a mile of palm-lined beach. From the moment you arrive, you are reminded that The Westin Rio Mar Beach sets the world's standards for hospitality service. Richly appointed tropical luxury makes each guest room a welcome, private haven. Spectacular views of the sapphire blue Atlantic or the majestic El Yunque, the Caribbean National Forest, complement the island-styled décor in our 600 guest rooms and suites, all featuring Westin’s renowned Heavenly Beds® and Heavenly Baths®. Rich, natural woods, Italian tile, plush fabrics and preferred amenities surround each guest with privileged comfort. A beachfront paradise for recreation, the resort offers an array of pleasures from championship golf and extensive watersports to night-time excitement at the Rio Mar Casino. Amenities include two beachfront pools, two world-class golf courses, the exclusive Mandara Spa with fitness center, 11 Har-Tru tennis courts, water sports center, scuba diving, bicycling and a variety of specialty shops and boutiques. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa, a Wyndham Grand Hotel Rio Grande
Rio Mar Beach Resort And Spa, a Wyndham Grand Resort
Wyndham Rio Grande
Rio Del Mar Puerto Rico
Rio Grande Wyndham
Rio Mar Puerto Rico
Westin Rio Mar Puerto Rico
Wyndham El Yunque National Forest
El Yunque National Forest Wyndham
Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa Puerto Rico/Rio Grande

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