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“Very Accomadating” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel

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El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   6063 Isla Verde Avenue, Isla Verde, Carolina 00979, Puerto Rico   |  
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Special Rate
$159 (USD)
Ranked #9 of 14 Hotels in Isla Verde
East Hampton, New York, United States
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Very Accomadating”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2012

My wife and I spent 4 days @ the resort...she suffers from a spinal cord injury and they couldn't do enough to make her stay comfortable. Carlos @ the front desk is a gentleman and all in all a good person. i would recommend this resort to anyone who is looking to have some rest and pampering. Cant say enough about how nice everyone was too us and everyone around us.... hope you have as great a time as we did.

Room Tip: ask for odd number room they face the ocean
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  • Stayed January 2012, 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
    • 4 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.
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2,042 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (645)
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English first
Germantown, Tennessee
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2012

We anticipated that the ownership of Waldorf would ensure a top-rate hotel and were sorely disappointed. While the lobby and the casino had been renovated, the amenities were lacking in the rooms, especially the bathrooms. Also, there was no view of the beach from rooms ....no balcony.......and the poolside cabanas were worn and tired looking. On a plus: The brunch was phenomenal, (but we were pestered by table-top birds on the patio) and we loved the rooftop BBQ open air restaurant. Needs a sprucing up!!

Room Tip: I go to the beach for a good surfside location and there were no rooms that we saw that fronted the...
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Charlotte, North Carolina
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2012

Based on my stay at El San Juan 10 years ago, I was excited about getting back. The lobby is one of the prettiest you'll see with marble and hand carved mahogany adorning it. It looks like the kind of place that Frank Sinatra would have loved while smoking a cigar and leaning on the lobby bar. Unfortunately, this is where the positive comments end.

The rooms like they were decorated with furnishings from Target. I think they were going for a minimalist, white theme but what they got was a sterile, plastic feel. The room was not soothing to say the least.

We had a weird security issue where we returned after dinner to find our hotel room door wide open....anyone walking by could see our entire room. As far as we can see nothing was taken, thankfully we had our valuables in the hotel safe. We called security and got a very unsatisfactory outcome as their equipment was down and they were unable to tell us whose room key was used to enter the room. We demanded a room change and were given it but I can tell you that the front desk treated it as more of annoyance to them than an issue of concert to me.

The grounds are in need of clean up as we saw common areas that had standing trash that had been there for sometime.

We enjoyed Puerto Rico, but next trip, we'll be choosing an alternative hotel.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 21, 2012

We needed to do our annual winter getaway and decided to go to Puerto Rico this year. We spent 3 days outside of San Juan and then 3 days in the city. We chose the EL San Juan for our time in the city. And WOW, what an awesome hotel.

From the moment you walk in to the hotel, you feel engulfed in classic old world charm. The ambiance of this hotel is incredible. One of my sons said this is the Waldorf Astoria of Puerto Rico. And I must admit, I think he is right. The design elements and architecture of this hotel are really cool. The lobby is fine. Many evenings they have live salsa/Puerto Rican music in the lobby. Many folks get up and dance and the ambiance is great. The exterior areas of the hotel are also stunning. The pools and pool areas are magnificent and very well kept. And then there is the beach…. it seems to be about a mile long and was great for swimming and some body surfing. Just in front of the hotel, you were able to rent jest skies ($40 per ½ hr). We did twice and had a blast. While this hotel is in the city, the outside areas and beach never felt that way.

The hotel service was excellent. We found the front desk staff, the bell staff and our housekeepers to be excellent. Service was definitely part of the hotel culture. We had reserved two adjoining rooms and the front desk upgraded us to a two room suite – it was awesome! We had great views of the pool area and the ocean. Our beds were great and we also enjoyed the bathroom amenities (Clear was the brand).

While we were in the city, we toured El Morro in Old San Juan. We also checked out a really cool ocean front cemetery in the same area. Near the hotel there is a cock fighting arena – yes, cock fighting. In Puerto Rico, this is considered a gentleman’s sport and has a very active following. We went one afternoon (with some hesitation) and actually found the whole experience very interesting. All bets on the fights are done by agreeing with someone near you on the amount and who you are betting on. Then a hand shake seals the deal. We ended up winning about $20 (which we later lost in the hotel casino). While the sport is very unusual, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves – ladies and children were permitted.

The El San Juan was a great hotel and a great part of our vacation. Our boys (14 & 18), as well as my wife and I, would definitely stay here again!

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 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.
Torrance, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2012

My friends and I stayed in this hotel in January. There are some positives to the hotel such as the location on the beach is absolutely beautiful and the main lobby area is gorgeous. The chairs provided on the beach is a paradise for beach goers.

For a Hilton I was surprised by the upkeep and service of the hotel.... Let me paint a picture. On arrival we had a room on the third floor and had to drag our luggage up three flights of stairs due to the elevator not working in our portion of the hotel. That's fine we can totally handle that. Then we showed up in our room and it was pretty but there was an open bag of chips that was left with crumbs in our closet. After discovering that we asked the front desk to double check the mini-bar to make sure nothing else was missing. At check out they tried to charge me for a few different items from the mini-bar, which we did not use. They thankful took the $50 purchases off my tab.

Another disappointment was the jacuzzi heaters were down for three nights. My friends and I had a few active adventures and all you want to do is rest and relax in the jacuzzi. We had to contact the concierge to figure out what was going on and they had no idea when the heaters would be back up.

We stayed 7 days at this hotel and had to deal with a leaky sink for about three full days. We originally thought that we had dragged the water into the bathroom somehow only to find the puddle in our bathroom every afternoon and morning after getting in from the beach. I informed the front desk and they sent someone to look who said they couldn't fix it till morning. Morning came around and the people who were suppose to fix our sink left and didn't do anything... I had to remind the front desk that our sink was leaking quite a bit of water onto our tile. It was just disappointing to have to deal with a leaky sink while on vacation. There wasn't even an offer to change rooms and the hotel was definitely not full.

FYI it is a $20 cab ride to old san juan and the airport. So if you want to head into town make it a day event otherwise you are wasting $40. Puerto Rico is awesome enjoy your vacation!!!

Room Tip: Garden views were nice and quiet.
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Cleveland, Ohio
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2012

My boyfriend and I stayed at the El San Juan 5 nights over MLK day weekend. We had a room on the 7th floor with a view of the pool and ocean. The sliding door didn’t open (it had a sticker saying do not open) which was disappointing, but at least we had a nice view. We didn’t hear any noise from the lobby or club downstairs. The hotel and grounds are beautiful (I’m a sucker for a good swim up bar). The staff was friendly and accommodating – just the right amount of attention. The lobby bars and casino were lively and crowded – it was entertaining to watch guests from other hotels gasp at the beauty and energy of the lobby scene during the weekend. The beach was nice, but not beautiful. The drinks were SO EXPENSIVE. Two vodka tonics cost $30. The food was good – we ate at The Palm for bar bites ($5.50 happy hour menu weeknights) once, again for a delicious steak dinner, and at the sushi restaurant – all fantastic. There are two great beach sports bars just past the Intercontinental with cheap, good food. For breakfast we either had a bagel from Starbucks (located within the hotel) or walked down to the two breakfast places nearby. We also ate at the Meixcan Restaurant next door once. If you want to spend the money, there certainly is not a lack of dining options at the El San Juan. Brava, the nightclub, was small but fun. Also, I think it’s important to point out that there’s really not much around the resort. The airport is literally 5 minutes away, but you don’t really notice it. We had a great escape from snowy Cleveland and loved the El San Juan.

Room Tip: 7th floor was great! Wish they had a balcony, but there's no shortage of places to sit by the po...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
Connecticut, USA
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2012

The most disappointing thing about this hotel is that there are no balconies (unless you are in the garden or ocean lanai)! So that means no afternoon cocktails on your balcony watching the sunset...a huge negative in my opinion. Like 85% of the other reviewers, I had to request a room change during our stay. I am a Hilton Honors Gold member and upon check-in I am supposed to automatically receive an upgrade. After confiming this with the person who checked us in, we were given a room on the 7th floor with a view of a TREE! You couldn't see anything else, how is that an upgrade???????????? We went to the lobby, where we stood in line behind numerous other guests who were there to complain about their rooms as well. Even after expressing our disappointment in the view, we were only moved 2 rooms over so we got a slightly better view. We stayed M-F and the hotel was definitely NOT at full capacity. You would think being a HH Gold member that they would of gone above and beyond to please us.

If you are a frugal consumer like myself, then DO NOT order drinks from the hotel. We ordered a pina colada and margarita from the hotel bar and it cost $27. These were very small plastic glasses. Instead, walk to the Pueblo grocery store (walk past the Chili's approx 1/2 miles and pick up your beer/wine there). There are no rules against BYOB to the beach. If you really want to plan ahead, pack a little lunch cooler from home that you can fill up with ice in the hotel and pack your refreshment of choice.

Was also disappointed/astonished with the breakfast offered. Again, being a HH member I received vouchers for free continental breakfast. Even with the voucher, you have to pay an additional $10 to receive any hot items (eggs, pancackes, etc). If you are not a HH member, the cold continental breakfast will cost you $15/pp...if you add hot items it goes up to $25/pp. However, if you walk about 1/4 mile to Don Jose's Restaurant you can order pancakes for $2.95!!

Speaking of food, we ate a La Piccola one night. Food was good, however very $$$$$. Don't expect to leave for under $100-$125 for 2 people. Our server Michael was very very friendly. To save some money go eat at Platos restaurant (again, only 1/4 mile from the hotel). We ate there 2 out of 4 nights. Great local Puerto Rican cuisine and really friendly staff.
To get to Old San Juan, be prepared to wait up to 30 mins for the bus outside the hotel. But for only $.75 is worth the wait (you must have exact change). The ride takes approx 45 mins.
To address the noise complaints I will say this. Monday through Wednesday we didn't hear a peep. However, on Thursday around 1:30 am I woke up and could hear the music from the lobby (all the way on the 8th floor)!!

Bottom line, there is a reason why Hilton HAS NOT put their name on the property even though they own it. If you are use to a typical Hilton hotel, then don't stay here! From what we heard, Hilton purchased this property some time back and bc of the recession they have not put money into much needed repairs!

Room Tip: ask for a room that is higher then 129, 229, 339, etc (i.e 135, 235, 335). Rooms that end in "x...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
susanwilkerson, Front Office Manager at El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel, responded to this review, January 16, 2012
Thank you for taking the time to share your review, and on behalf of our family, I truly apologize for the inconveniences that you experienced in our hotel. I would like to contact you to hear in more detail these unfortunate events in order to improve our service and product. I will share your comments with our leadership team. Rest assured that we will take immediate action to solve these opportunities.

I remain at your service.

Susan.wilkerson@hilton.com
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel

Address: 6063 Isla Verde Avenue, Isla Verde, Carolina 00979, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Carolina > Isla Verde
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Luxury Hotel in Isla Verde
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Isla Verde
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 386
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Oceanfront hotel surrounded by 15 acres of landscaped grounds in fashionable Isla Verde district - 15 minutes from Old San Juan. El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel presents a perfect blend of tropical splendor, Old World elegance and vibrant culture. Redesigned guest rooms are bright and inviting- ideal for a retreat. Lounge at the beach or on the expansive Encanto Pool Complex featuring flowering gardens, and spacious sundeck, Olympic-sized pool, Fantasy swimming pool with swim-up bar, waterfall and whirlpools, private cabanas for rental or relax and rejuvenate at the Edourad de Paris Day Spa. Enjoy a vibrant and varied nightlife, choosing from nine on-site award wining restaurants, a world-class casino, plus 15 lounges, bars and nightclubs. One life to live? Live it up at El San Juan! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El San Juan Resort And Casino
El San Juan Hotel Isla Verde
El San Juan Hotel Casino
The Waldorf Astoria Collection Carolina
El San Juan Hotel Puerto Rico
El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel Puerto Rico/Isla Verde

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