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“Perfect hotel for us - Reviews need more context” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Caribe Hilton San Juan

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Caribe Hilton San Juan
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1 San Geronimo Street, San Juan 00901, Puerto Rico   |  
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Ranked #15 of 47 Hotels in San Juan
Westminster, Maryland
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Perfect hotel for us - Reviews need more context”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2011

Context:
Couple (40 yrs old)...trip alone without our 2 young children. We both have traveled all over domestically and internationally for work and leisure.
Looking for: Great location, clean hotel, great pool(s) / beach, good food.
Not looking for: major entertainment, party scene, and lots of kids / younger crowd.

Facts:
1. If you care about the exterior of the actual building, it does look a bit dated architecturally (but I thought it was fine).

2. Room: We were in the Hilton Honors Tower with ocean view / balcony. Room was large with king bed (one of the most comfortable beds ever), it was clean, air conditioning worked well. Bathroom was large (large walk-in shower with overhead rain shower head and also wall shower head). Were there some minor knicks in the walls from wear? Yes. Did I care? No, I had no plans to BUY the property.

3. Food and drink: Good options? Yes. Good quality? Yes. Expect to spend an average of $60 per meal for lunch and dinner if you're going to have a couple of drinks (beer: $7 / frozen drinks: $12). We ate at Mortons one night for dinner for a splurge - it was $200.

4. Property: LOVED the grounds and pools. You could lay out in well maintained grassy areas, sand/beach areas, or by the pool. A lot to look at and enjoy. The inlet water area was clean and beautiful - many fish to see in the water.

5. Service: Service was perfectly fine in the restaurants (top notch in Mortons). If you needed something, the hotel staff was helpful.

6. Location: Felt very safe (most times you feel unsafe beyond the fenced in property). Close to Old San Juan, which is lovely. It's an easy drive to the Rainforest (we spent the day hiking around).

Some observations from previous posts:
"It rained our entire vacation" - you can't blame the hotel. Yes, it does rain, but it clears away as fast as it arrives.

"Poor service" - if you want an activities director and you're looking for tons of entertainment, pick a different type of hotel (e.g., all inclusive).

We got a very good deal on this hotel that included full breakfasts. We didn't have huge expectations based on the reviews, but the negative reviews were off base, in our opinion. Again, know what you're looking for before you book. I scoured TripAdvisor for this trip and have never seen such contrasting positive and negative reviews for hotels as I did for Puerto Rico.

Room Tip: I sent an email ahead of time about why we were visiting, our late arrival, etc... (they replied &a...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,725 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (841)
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English first
Boston, Massachusetts
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2011

We stayed there for our annivesary and had a excellent stay. We went as part of a JetBlue vacation package so we got a good deal. On our fist day we we're taken care of by Genaro Rivera, Manager on Duty, who helped us to get an early check in and a free breakfast coupon. He and the entire staff were very friendly and accomodating. Housekeeping even gave us 2 free bottles of water on the day we checked out! That was right on time after an morning walk. Food on the resort was very pricey. There is a subway nearby for inexpensive lunch. Take a nice walk over the bridge to Condada for a variety of restaurants. Resort has hammocks, private beach, swans, peacocks (I didn't know that they fly), iguana, fish, birds in a cage in the lobby and much more....

Room Tip: Ask for anocean view in the towers. You can see the private beach and the lagoon side.
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dayton, Ohio
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2011

My girlfriend and I stayed here for 5 nights(4th night free deal with free breakfast buffet and $50 total casino credit-booked through Expedia.com). Cab ride from hotel was $19 plus$1/bag-15 minute ride-we did not rent a car. People drive nuts there, especially the cab drivers.

We arrived at the hotel three hours before check-in and the staff was able to get us a room right away. But when we got into the room in the main building it was not a renovated room like we hoped. The room wasn't very clean and the bathroom was falling apart with cracked tile and water pipes coming out of the wall. Thankfully I read a ton of reviews(good and bad) and remembered that people loved the renovated rooms in the tower buidling. The staff was very kind and got us the room we came for-no problem. The room was on the 17th floor and was awesome!!! It was everything a nice hotel room should be at a resort. Finally we were able to start our vacation! By the way the maid staff in the tower did a great job for us.

The lobby is very nice with an open air feel to it, and there is free wifi in the lobby.
We visited during the rainy season which wasn't bad. It would rain for about 10 minutes every two hours but the sun would come right back out. During the week was my favorite time because it was empty. The weekend did pick up but I never felt crowded.

We had the breakfast buffet which is about $22 if not included-the meal was amazing and made to order omletts were great. Most days we had lunch at Subway across the street. Friendly people there and the price is right on...cause it's Subway. We had dinner twice in Old San Juan, once at Senor Frogs and once at Sophia's Place(an Italian resturant named after Sohpia Loren). Good food and staff at both places. We ate the rest of our dinners at the hotel and they were good but very pricey. I understand it's an island and they have to ship in most of the food, but come on now. I'm not a big sushi fan but the sushi resturant in the flower garden was awesome. Great service and food there. We didn't eat much local food but plan on it next time. Had a hard time finding a place to go dancing, which I am kinda glad cause I dance like a white guy anyway. She was kinda bummed though. Senor Frogs only had club music to dance to but no Salsa or anything else.

We walked to the San Cristobal Fort in Old San Juan http://www.nps.gov/saju/index.htm and we loved it there. The history of that place is pretty amazing and an eye opener. The walk there was just over a mile. We took the bus back to the hotel which was 75 cents compared to $12 cab ride. Next time we may rent bikes and get around that way. We felt safe in Old San Juan but stuck to the tourist spots and dind't go off the beaten path too much. There were cops there blocking traffic for pedestrians and showing force. Thank you San Juan police! There is a trolly that will take you to many stops in Old San Juan for free.
The souvenir shops in Old San Juan were all about the same with similar prices and product. The hotel actually had better prices on some things like T-shirts and shot glasses.
This hotel used to have a casino back many moons ago. But now the nearest casino is only a 10-15 minute walk across the bridge to the Marriott-Condano Casino. Our hotel gave us $25 casino credit each. We won some money while playing with their money-gotta like that!!!
For the most part we stuck to the private beach at the hotel and enjoyed the swimming pools and hot tubs. The pools were of great size but the hot tubs were small. Bartenders Jose and Fernando were great to us! We enjoyed the hammocks and slept half a day away in them with shade from the palm trees. Both of us snorkled in the water and found two small reefs with tropical fish in them. Copy and paste this link into YOUTUBE if you wish to see a short clip of the fish http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWWt2SUKXCg We also had a visit from a small but friendly lizard http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AL5-RnmyZGQ again copy and paste if you wish to see the lizard. Drinks were about $10 each so be prepared for that if you are going to drink. There is a small shop across the street that sells water, beer and ready to drink rum. Both of us used this shop often, but it was kinda dirty.
Overall we had a great time and will come back here. We found it to be family friendly, with nice guests and the service was right on point. I loved Puerto Rico because most people spoke English, there was no currency exchange, they fly our American flag, and no passports needed.
Hope you found this to be helpful. If you have any questions feel free to email me at my youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/klarock03?feature=mhee Thanks!!!

Room Tip: Tower room or Villa
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
nj
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2011

Ok so where do i begin, we stayed from July 28 to July 31 and i have to say i was alittle skeptical, because of the reviews I read of all of the horrible experiences, but I must say, check for yourself so not listen to reviews. We arrived and were immediatley approached by valet and bellman. The car doors were opened for us and we were escorted to check in. Check in took about 15 minutes. We were then taken to our rooms which were in the tower building we had room 864 it was beautiful and the view from this room was amazing!!!!!!! Evertyhing was perfect from the bathroom to the balcony. The only one complaint I would have is about the restaurant and food within the hotel it is very expensive and the chef should make arrangements to retake some culinary classes beacuse the food was not very good at all. We ate majority of the time outside of hotel because it was cheaper and much better quality. Try ROpa Vieja on he other side of bay and go to Viejo San Juan and eat at Raices Restaurant.

RESORT---- The resort was amazing, get a map because it is huge.. The grounds are extremely well kept. The beach is beautiful and the view from this location was magnificent. We were able to see the entire hotel area coastline from the beach. There are 2 jacuzzis and one huge infinity pool. Several beach beds and enough hammocks to fill 2 resorts. All in all I have no complaints. It was very quiet , but on Saturdays beach DJ comes out and it becomes a lil beach party which was great as well.
I cant say enough about the resort it was AMAZING!!!

ROOMS-----Bed was very comfortable, bathroom was spectacular our maid was so so nice. If you get a good maid please please tip there are very few of them...

All in all I can go on talking about the resort forever it was very nice , you will encounter some rude staff and some very very nice staff.
Oh you might smell some musty smell sometimes in the lobby but if you have traveled before to any island this is not unusual it is very common because of the proximity to the ocean.

This concludes my review....

IT WAS AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!

Room Tip: tower building is beautiful
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2011

I brought my boyfriend to Culebra for his birthday, and on the morning of our last full day there, our rented villa flooded and we decided to head back to the mainland a day early. My boyfriend used his Honors points to book us a room last-minute here. It was a very nice stay.
As with all Hiltons I've been to, the bed was super comfy. The bathroom was big and fancy.
Outside, there are a lot of activityoptions. There is a private area of beach for hotel-stayers, with rental options for kayaks and other goodies. A pier that you can walk out on to. There are two pools to swim in, hot tubs, outdoor bars.
We picked up a cab to Old San Juan the next morning and took a 10-minute drive over there, You could probably walk if you had time and energy!
The only complaint I had was that the drink prices at the indoor bar were steep - $11 each for a rum & coke and jack & coke. Other than that, a nice hotel. Would stay here again!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas, Texas
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2011

I usually stay at this hotel before departing San Juan.. It's just about 15 minutes from the airport. Yes, it's a little pricey, but service is important to me, as well as cleanliness and I always get it here. The small beach is very private and the gardens are inviting. Free Wi-Fi at the Starbucks at the lobby. Security is excelent. Ask for a room with a view or you'll get one that looks at the back of the building..

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Poughquag, NY
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2011

Just got back from a week's vacation at the Caribe Hilton. Although the reviews state that the hotel restaurants were pricey, the prices were about average for the area. You have to remember it's an island and many food items are shipped here. The hotel was "dated" but was not a bad experience. Typical Hilton Hotel that is sprawling, reminded me of the Hilton in Hawaii. As for the room, we had a room in the Hilton Towers that was clean, modern with a huge bathroom shower. Our view was ocean view but it seems all rooms overlook a "roof" area down below. The beach area is a nice "cove" that isn't too far from the pool with hammocks nearby. One downfall is that there is an abandoned "Normandie" hotel next door. Boarded up windows and broken windows you could view from the beach area. Hilton should but that property as it's an eyesore to their hotel. If you want hustle and bustle, get a hotel in the "hotel zone" just down the road. Many restaurants to go to at night and people walking up and down the street. We had the breakfast buffet which was always very well stocked. I didn't find any problem with service at the hotel, everyone seemed very accommodating, no wait for check in at all and we came in on a Saturday. If I were to go back, I'd probably stay somewhere in the hotel zone as this hotel with it's abandoned neighbor hotel was a bit creepy!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Caribe Hilton San Juan

Address: 1 San Geronimo Street, San Juan 00901, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > San Juan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in San Juan
#5 On the Beach Hotel in San Juan
#8 Luxury Hotel in San Juan
#11 Romantic Hotel in San Juan
#12 Business Hotel in San Juan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Caribe Hilton San Juan 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Caribe Hilton hotel, one of the most luxurious hotels in Puerto Rico, is set on an exclusive peninsula, made up of 17 acres of lush tropical gardens. This Puerto Rico Hilton is ideally situated between historic old San Juan and the exciting Condado area, offering a secluded beach, lavish accommodations and amenities tailored to families, couples and business travelers alike. This San Juan hotel is just a 15-minute drive from Luis Munoz Marin Airport and five minutes from San Juan's new Convention Center. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Caribe Hilton San Juan Hotel San Juan
Hilton Hotel San Juan
Hilton Hotel Caribe
Hilton San Juan
San Juan Caribe Hilton Hotel

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