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“Very nice experience but - unfortunately - it did not WOW me” 3 of 5 stars
Review of W Retreat & Spa Vieques

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W Retreat & Spa Vieques
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   State Road 200 Km 3.2 - HC1 | Box 9368, 0000765, Puerto Rico   |  
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4th Night Free & Credit
Ranked #3 of 6 Hotels in Isla de Vieques
Brussels, Belgium
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
78 hotel reviews
Reviews in 67 cities Reviews in 67 cities
609 helpful votes 609 helpful votes
“Very nice experience but - unfortunately - it did not WOW me”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2011

I am a bit puzzled about writing this review.

First of all, let me tell you that I travel a lot (and like high end places) and I am a huge fan of the W brand.

I had looked forward to my stay in the W Vieques, and I did have a very nice holiday. However, would I go again after having visited the resort ? Probably not, because I was not WOW-ed at all.

First, the pros :
- very clean resort grounds with a very nice pool area
- nice, spacious and trendy rooms (as one would expect from a W hotel)
- excellent and friendly staff
- the outdoor campfire in front of the lobby is a nice touch
All in all a very nice 4+ star hotel in my opinion.

But, there were some contras :
- no matter how nice the resort was, I did not have the feeling at all of being in the Caribbean. The vegetation on the resort is not lush at all (maybe it is still immature) and the 2 beaches - although taken well care of - are not your typical exotic dream beaches. In fact, you have to go to other side of the island to convince yourself that your are in a tropical hideaway.
- the restaurant does encounter too many problems (we were there in November ; maybe things worked out since then). Service was too slow (and we are Europeans, so used to slow service), one evening they forgot the meal of my partner, the menu is too limited, and portions rather small. Food is very good (but not memorable). Of course, nothing stops you from eating in a restaurant outside the resort, but still, a hotel that claims to be 5 stars should have an excellent trouble-free restaurant. However, I am confident that the restaurant will be solved in the future.
- what would really have added some extra value for me, would be the presence of some outdoor hottubes, so that one could take a dip after sunset (like most high end beach resorts have these days).

Don't take me wrong. I loved my holiday. And I liked the resort. But I was simply not wow-ed as the W brand claims to do.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,074 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (320)
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English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2011

Our vacation at the W in Vieques was so amazing and relaxing. We have been to several islands and many luxury hotels and this place had such a wonderfully luxurious, but laid-back vibe that we loved. We would return in a second if we could.

We stayed at the resort the first week of May, which apparently is a shoulder/off season, and therefore, thankfully missed many of the crowds that were there just a week or two prior. Maybe that helped to ensure we were better taken care of, because we had amazing service the entire trip. Some people who were particularly great were Imelda, Bree and Rodrigo at the front desk, Mari in the restaurant, a cute petite woman at the bar/living room in the evenings whose name has escaped me (apologies), Ricky, and the crew at Blackbeard Sports who helped us with our gear and diving needs. Others were very good, too, but we didn’t always remember to get names.

The grounds are beautiful and we loved the main pool. We had no wait at check-in and received a great tour of the property. Our room was spectacular (pretty sure that’s also what it was called) :) and overlooked the ocean and pool. It was very large, had a great balcony and that horse trough tub which was wonderful for a long soak. I loved all the little decorative hooks on the wall to hang your clothes, beach bags, etc.- very nice touch. I think my only small complaint was that we never seemed to have enough shower gel for all the showers we take on beach vacations-ha. Another nice touch is the free water (with citrus fruits) all over the property.

We thought that most of the food was wonderful. Breakfasts were always great. We ordered the buffet once, but since we don’t tend to eat so much in the morning, we started ordering off the menu and that was much better. Some of the best dishes are only available from the menu. Dinner there was also great both times we went- the specials, in particular, were always perfect. We also recommend going to dinner off-site- there are some really great restaurants on the island (which we found, of course, by reading the tripadvisor forums). We only did lunch a couple of times and they were pretty good- salads and sandwiches. Not too heavy which is great when by the pool. Oh- and the smoothies/shakes are great!

The folks at reception were helpful in setting up our biobay tours and anything else for which we needed assistance (restaurant reservations, etc.) And everyone was so friendly. We really felt we had received great service the entire trip.

Also, we always dig the music played at W Hotels and one expects that as part of their brand. It’s a hip, loungey feel and the Vieques resort seemed to also have an added island vibe to the music. It was perfect for us when laying by the pool or in the living room. But if that is not your scene, you may not enjoy it as much. But you should know that it’s part of the W experience.

We did yoga two mornings and really enjoyed it. The rest of the days we used the fitness center which met all of our workout needs (weights and cardio). We also had some spa time (massages and mani/pedi for me) and enjoyed all of it. Really great people in the spa- so friendly.

As for the rest of Vieques, definitely try to rent a jeep/car! We read all the forum posts and got one for a few days. It made a great difference to be able to drive to the beautiful Caribbean beaches (particularly those little ones where barely anyone else is- so lovely), to tour the rest of the island, and be able to dine off the resort. Yes, you need to book the jeep very early- as soon as you book your stay. But it’s definitely worth it for a few days.

All in all, our Vieques trip was amazing. We are hooked on this little island and the W there and can’t wait to return!

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2011

We came for a wedding and while the pool area was nice, the food was mediocre and the drinks were way overprice! $13 for a rum punch, $20 for a mezze plate, etc. We ordered ceviche and it was rancid, so we sent it back. We paid $55 a person for a "fish fry" as the front desk explained it, but there was not fire or whole fish frying; just one piece of cuttle fish, three prawns and a 1x2 inch piece of overcook tuna. The sides were dry -- a guest choked on a piece of yucca! The food for the wedding was average, typical buffet quality.

We had a room off the pool, our room was clean, but not consistently. The cleaning staff didn't take empty glasses on some days and on another took a half full corked bottle of wine (we had recorked it and set it aside by our nighstand).

The staff was super nice though! Love love love the bartender at the pool!

I'd like to see how this resort adapts once there is more competition.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Miami, Florida
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2011

Vieques is definitely worth a visit & the W really compliments everything Vieques has to offer.

I LOVED the way this hotel was designed! The furniture is spectacular! The entire reception area is made of local recycled wood. The living room was my favorite! All the open space with direct view to the ocean. The sheer curtains & hammocks throughout the resort were such a nice touch.

I stayed here for a business trip but will definitely return with my husband for a personal stay.

The hotel has 156 rooms but you feel that you are in a small boutique hotel. There are 2 bars, 3 pools, 2 private beaches (1 for adults), kayaks/foating tubes to use for free during your stay, tennis court, gym & spa.

The rooms are extremely spacious and almost all of them have ocean view. I really liked having a tub & rain shower. The tub was very cool, shaped like an oval bucket where the horses would drink water from in the stable.

Vieques is known for it's wild roaming horses. It is common to see the horses on the property. They are gentle and will not bother you. The people throughout the island feed them and take care of them as they belong to the island/people. The island of Vieques only has 9,000 residents.

Be sure to wake up early for yoga, go horseback riding, rent a jeep to explore all the untouched beaches throughout the island & go to the bio bay. The bio bay is really worth the visit.

I highly recommend this resort & island if you are looking for a very relaxing retreat.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Connecticut
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2011

My husband and I stayed at the W from Tuesday - Friday of Holy Week. We arrived at the airport, were met by a van rather quickly, and arrived around 2:00. It had been a long day, and the wait to get to our room after check-in was quite long and I wished they had just let us walk there ourselves and not made us wait for the guided tour. However, the grounds are beautiful and the staff is accommodating and lovely. Our room was fine - we didn't have a view, but then again, it was quiet and close to everything. I do wish they had explained that we needed to put our room key into the charge outlet to get the electricity to come on because it was pretty dark! We headed to the pool as soon possible. It was busy that day, and it took awhile to get our food order at the bar, but it was so gorgeous outside that it was easy to be forgiving. We didn't rent a car, so we needed to take a taxi (not individual, but a publico) in the lobby to get to our dinner reservation. All went fine until we tried to get back and the driver never responded. It seems they have specific drivers that they call upon, though some people we spoke to had arranged their own transportation. If I were visiting more than a few days, I'd definitely rent a car so I could have visited many of the Caribbean beaches - apparently that needs to be done months in advance. After an hour wait, and 3 phone calls to the hotel, we made it back. but again, it's the island and it was warm and beautiful outside, and the wait wasn't so bad. The next morning we went to the cafe for coffee and pastries, (not realizing there was complimentary coffee in the main "living room" ). We spent much of the day on the beach, which we found to be great. Most people gravitated to the pools, and it seemed that they also plopped their beach towels on the most coveted floating lounge chairs quite early even if they were nowhere in sight, pretty tacky. There weren't many children there; I don't think I would want to have had young kids there - not a lot to do for them, and when they take over the pool, it is kind of annoying if you're there to relax. It was mid-week, so it wasn't as busy as it appears to have been on the week-end. Only once did we need to move our chairs to the end of the beach where there wasn't a speaker in our ears with the resounding bass so often complained about in reviews. We took a kayak out and also took advantage of the inner tubes. It was glorious to bob in the soft waves. The bar staff was great - as was the red sangria. We also enjoyed the solitude of the plunge pool. My favorite time was 7 a.m. once I knew I could grab some coffee and just sit and enjoy the quiet and the view of the ocean. We had a glitch with our biobay reservation, but the concierge was accommodating and made it right. I truly think they want to do the best for their guests, but sometimes island time and lack of resources may prevent that from happening 100%. When we were there, there was a gas shortage, and one of our publico drivers told us he had been up at 4 a.m. to get gas. I did find that different staff gave different advice, and that was confusing at times. But all in all, our stay was glorious. We ate at the breakfast buffet one day, no complaints there, and mostly just enjoyed the beauty of the island. We also took a public to Playa Caracas one day - the place was hopping as it was Holy Week and the locals were partying. It was great to witness the culture, maybe like coming to the states on the 4th of July. I do think they are reading these reviews, because there was a sunset "happy hour" with free cocktails from 6 - 6:30, and the music was only intrusive one time. Great weather, great locals, great views, great sleeping (comfy bed), great cocktails, extremely relaxing. All in all, a wonderful place. I'd return in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Naples, Florida
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2011

Getting to Vieques will need some planning ahead, however once there you leave everything behind... the experience begings at the airport lounge with complimentary drinks and a concierge that will assist you with the transportation. While waiting for our transportation we met Bree (Guest Manager) we shared that it was my birthday weekend and we were looking forward to a relaxing and enjoyable time. Emilda was our front desk agent, great check-in experience asked questions to learn what was important to us. Bree came to the front desk and share with Emilda that it was my birthday, that evening a Happy Birthday chocolate cake came to our room, It was a very nice surprise and it showed their attention to detailed. We also got a personalized tour of the property and the same person took us to our room and explained all the room and resort amenities. This property is located on top of a hill with amazing views and beach access. It is not like any other resort, it is a place that will make you want to visit again and again, for sure if you are looking at a relaxing, romantic and very secluded place.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Bronx, NY
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2011

ok so first let me say that we are cutting them a lil slack & grading them on a curve because it was a holiday weekend & the place was PACKED. Having said that we ran into some problems. we were able to check in early (great) we asked to be upgraded to a beach view(we would pay of course) we were told no, only to find out that another couple we flew in with was upgraded without asking. Duvet in room was dirty, toilet-dirty, faucets dirty with toothpaste, & lotion. DvD player broken, problem logging into w-fi. Went to bar was ignored by bartenter, waitress was nice enough to make our drinks (left her a big tip, & preceeed to deal with her for the most part for the rest of the stay). Waiter spilled a tray of Mimosas on my husband at breakfast (he was very sorry, but kept saying"what can I do to make it right" well if he doesn't know than who the heck does) he later compted us on two mimosas after careful consideration. 3 days in a row I ordered a tray of Happy Birthday cookies to be sent to the room in honor of my husbands birthday..finally rcvd them on the 3 day. Laundry was not picked up, had to call twice for that. Specifically told room service and front desk that I wanted my breakfast at 6:45 am SHARP as we were checking out early , breakfast arrived too late so I went to the airport hungry. Also due to a mix up at check out, our driver that was supposed to take us to the airport removed our luggage from the shuttle without telling us & just left us..so there was a last minute scramble for the hotel to provide us with trasportation to the airport. There were several other mishaps, but I'm exhausted. I will say that the W lounge @ the airport is STELLAR, most of the staff at the hotel were very kind, & polite. Just not equipt to handle any kind of problems at all, & rooms (once cleaned) & grounds (make it very relaxing) were nice, spa was FAB, & the view Outstanding. I think we will give them one more chance on a slower weekend, & see how it goes

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
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Additional Information about W Retreat & Spa Vieques

Address: State Road 200 Km 3.2 - HC1 | Box 9368, 0000765, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Isla de Vieques
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 6 Hotels in Isla de Vieques
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — W Retreat & Spa Vieques 4.5*
Number of rooms: 157
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on two private, secluded beaches, the W Retreat & Spa Ð Vieques Island in Puerto Rico provides the perfect getaway for a relaxing and luxurious villa-style vacation with infinite indulgences. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
w Retreat & Spa Vieques Hotel Isla De Vieques
w Retreat And Spa Vieques

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