My partner and I stayed at the Casablanca Hotel for a total of 4 days during November and December 2013. The first 3 days were prior to a cruise and an extended trip to the island of Vieques and the last day was a farewell to San Juan before heading back home.
As others have stated, the basic rooms are very dark with only a small window opening to the corridor. We opted to pay approx. $20US more each night for a balcony and this was substantially better. There are also some rooms without balconies that open to the outside instead of a hallway, but they are few and far between. The balcony facing the street was a bit noisy in the early morning (due to construction), but the light and patio chairs for enjoying an evening cocktail far outway the disturbance.
The rooftop patio is disappointing, but could be spectacular if the hotel management spruced it up and perhaps offered a cocktail hour a couple of days a week. I think it could be a real money maker (hint, hint!) Otherwise, it's unremarkable and not really worth the trek up the stairs.
Breakfast was adequate the first day but thereafter we ventured out to local places and REAL coffee. Warning***the coffee at the Casablanca left a lot to be desired. However the hotel offers 20% discount to guests dining there so it is worth it.
While in Viejo San Juan:
Do check out the El Convento Hotel. It is beautiful architecture and a great spot for an afternoon cocktail.
Do visit El Morro and the adjacent cemetery. Stunning headstones and infinite views make for a true "Rican" experience.
Do dine at Café Puerto Rico around the corner from the hotel. Good food, unpretentious and honest prices.
Do visit the Botanical Gardens for a wonderful treat.
Do wander the streets with no explicit destination. You will find great shops, cafes and one of a kind photo opportunities.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- No Elevator. CasaBlanca is now a family owned hotel, with a lot of character and a personalized experience. We want you to love San Juan as much as we do by making sure your stay is pleasant and memorable. Back to basics; our rooms are very clean, our beds are comfortable, and yes, we do have hot water now! We offer 20% discount at our restaurant Cafe Americain conveniently located in the lobby, past guests insist it is the best breakfast they have ever had! We listen! Since we took ownership in December of 2012, we have taken the time to read all your valuable reviews and see all the wonderful pictures you have posted online. We take action! Thanks to your reviews we have been able to fix many of the problems guests were experiencing in 2012 and before. We now have free WiFi in the rooms. We have worked very hard and are very proud about our progress!We believe the building was built sometime around 1910 and therefore rooms are not quite what we are used to these days in terms of size, but you can feel the charm of Old Town for sure. It is a great experience!We have begun to undergo a study to the infrastructure of the building to see in what ways we can improve our rooms in terms of space, noise reduction and extra windows. We will keep you posted! Please make CasaBlanca your traveling choice when visiting Puerto Rico, we would love to have you! Mr. & Mrs. Oller ... more less
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