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“Super Time, Super Little Beach Hotel” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel La Playa

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Hotel La Playa
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   6 Calle Amapola, Isla Verde, Carolina 00979, Puerto Rico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 14 Hotels in Isla Verde
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Super Time, Super Little Beach Hotel”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2011

Stayed at the Hotel la Playa for two nights in late March and would have loved to have stayed longer. We came in a little late at night but Julio was hanging out on the patio just off the street and knew right away who we were. He was very accommodating and had us checked in and in our room in very quickly. The room we had opened to the inside patio area, was very neat and clean, and was very comfortable for two kids and two adults. Not huge, but for us it was perfectly fine.

We woke to some street noise the first morning, but was only temporary so the kids doze back off. I got up and had some coffee on the deck out the back of the hotel which is right over the ocean. They have a nice little continental breakfast with bagels, some danish, fruit and cereal. A wonderful picturesque start to any vacation day.

We spent a full day on the beach across the street from the front of the hotel. Its is a super nice beach. We just grabbed some beach towels and walked a couple hundred feet up the beach and rented chairs for $4 a day. Super deal!. There are a few food stands right there, so we snatched a few empenadas sodas for lunch. to have a beer or pina colada you need to go back to the hotel, but it is so close that it only takes a few minutes to be there and back. Was easy and the bar staff was very helpful putting drinks in a plastic glass. Our day on the beach was wonderful.

Drove to old San Juan at other end of town after beach. It was easy and we really loved El Morro. We kept the shopping brief in Old San Juan but there was plenty if that is what you are into.

Back at the hotel that night we went to eat at their restaurant. The place was full with a wonderful mix of folks. We had our first taste of Mofongo along with some other wonderful dishes. The food was really wonderful and the waitress was very sweet. Candle lit, right next to the ocean, wave lapping up under you. What more could you ask for. Bar was hop'n but was didn't go so late as to keep us up.

This just a terrific little hotel with a great staff. I have traveled to all types of places and stayed in all type of hotel and this a place I would love to return to. Not for you if you want resort type amenities or in house casino, but wonderful if you are into relaxing on the beach and some sight seeing. Remember Puerto Rico does have some poverty but the people are wonderful and there is a lot of beauty to behold.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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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108 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
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (29)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
New York, NY
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2011

Hotel La Playa is a simple, small, clean hotel right on the beach, and 20 minutes from the airport. If you want a no frills experience with very friendly staff and very easy beach access, this is a good bet. Our double room had two double beds, A/C, ceiling fan, and a large bathroom with a stall shower. Plenty of towels, shampoo, and soap were provided, as were beach towels (those we had to ask for).

Beach Access: You actually have access to two different beaches. Picture the coastline as a "W" -- Hotel La Playa is located at the tip of the middle apex of the W. Across the street from the front of the hotel is one long stretch of beach, but if you exit the hotel via set of steps and hop off of a rock on the restaurant side, you've got access to the other stretch of beach.

Bar/Restaurant: La Playita, open to the public, is the open-air bar/restaurant on the ground floor, overlooking the ocean. It's a beautiful spot, save for the abandoned building next door that's a bit of an eyesore. Drinks (prepared by Blake, the bartender) were great, and the food was pretty good too. A plentiful continental breakfast (juice, coffee, bagels, cold-cuts, sliced cheese, scones, cookies) is included with the room rate. On our last night, a Saturday, the bar area had a musician singing and playing guitar in the evening.

My one complaint about my experience at Hotel La Playa is that there was quite a bit of noise coming from the courtyard late on a Saturday night such that my sleep was disturbed (but then again, I'm a light sleeper).

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2011

We've heard of this hotel from friends that I gone there previously and said they loved it! Also, after looking at many different hotels that were on or close to the beaches, we realized that they were extremely expensive (200-350) and they didn't even include continental breakfast! So we reserved the playita hotel for 2 days and then took a cruise from san juan.

The hotel is literally located at the end of a street that is on the beach. This hotel is a hidden jewel. There is only one narrow street that directs you to the hotel so mark sure to rent a small compact car if planning to. There is very limited parking so you must speak with the valet driver to reserve a parking spot.

At the register we were welcomed by a loving staff. We checked in but the only thing that was somewhat strange was that they charge ur credit immediately there when u first arrive and not at check out. Also, I had many visa mastercard gift cards from my wedding, and they couldn't use them because they were not familiarize and their credit card machine wouldn't process them. So, we paid for our room for 2 nights and it came out to a grand total of $205 with continental breakfast that would include bagels, cream cheese, fruits, cheeses, lunch meats, cereal and juices ( better something than nothing ).

Our room was small, with modern wooden and eco-friendly furniture. The only down fall was that the queen size was harder and stiffer than a theraputic bed, but we couldn't complain bc we were only there for a short stay anyways. The ac at night made a lot of noise which made it hard to sleep at night but if u tell the front desk they will fix it. The resturant/bar area was located downstairs in an open area that had views of the ocean and live music at night. The restaurant had affordable and reasonble items on the menu. The kitchen was open until 12am. When u exited the hotel to go outside, you literally stepped onto the beach.

At night I would strongly recommend for people to stay at the hotel or the beach near the hotel, and not wonder off. The streets leading to the main street off the hotel are dark. If you plan on wondering off and discover the night life, take ur rented car or more preferably a taxi which only ran$ 5 dollars on the isla verde street, or $10-15 to old san juan area. But honestly there is no need to wonder off but you have everything at this hotel. We would only go sightseeing during the day which was amazing because we were close to everything. It is located 5minutes from the airport, 10 minutes from san juan/old san juan area, 20minutes from the rainforest el yunque, 20minutes from plaza americas.

I strongly recommend this hotel to everyone for a short stay just at the fact that the beds are hard and that it is not ur average huge commercial resort. It is a peaceful small boutique hotel meant for relaxation. I loved it, its afforable and welcoming. Next time we plan on going to pr for another short trip before a cruise or before another destination

  • Stayed April 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Medford, New York
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2011

I have been to la playa hotel several times and I always seem to go back since they have such nice staff family owed hotel and well kept.
I love the pina coladas and the foodis very good the breeze feels so good and the people here are even better. This place is just steps from the beach and also walking distance to all the main hotel and restaurants. If you would like a nice quiet place to relax have a drink and get some sun and get some fresh air this is the place to be . we are going back in august cant wait.

  • Stayed March 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2010

My mother and I stayed at this hotel after a week long business trip. The previous week, we stayed at the home of local friends in Caguas while traveling around the island. We decided to have one night of a vacation experience before flying home to the states. So, we stayed here, sight unseen, because of the strong recommendation of several Puerto Rican friends. After seeing the bad experience described on Trip Advisor, I was a little wary, but we decided to trust the locals. And boy were our friends right about this place. It's just lovely.

Since we came during the off season, we were able to arrive without a reservation and check in to a room immediately. For just under one hundred dollars, we rented this lovely room and received a fresh continental breakfast in the morning. Incredible value for the super touristy Isla Verde. The rooms all open to not a drab carpeted hallway but to a central beautiful courtyard, with pretty landscaping and high quality patio furniture. The rooms were on the smaller side, but beautifully furnished with dark wood furniture: two queen beds with four pillows each, central nightstand, a large closet with a safe, a comfy lounge chair, lovely tiled bath, and a flatscreen television carrying many English channels. And yes, it was so incredibly clean!!! I can't emphasize that enough. Our room was on the second story with a side view of the ocean. We left the windows open (they do have screens) to smell the sea air as we were sleeping. I really appreciated the eco-friendly nature of the hotel, even the soaps were labeled to be organic and without animal testing, I believe. The hotel is literally steps from the huge beach, with jet-ski rental, para-sailing and surfing lessons within walking distance. I especially appreciated that the whole place displays local paintings and sculpture. I even saw that there were hosting an art opening at their space within the next couple of weeks. It's so wonderful to see a hotel supporting its local arts community instead of using the same old generic mass produced prints in its decor.

Yes, the service was incredible. Everyone made an effort to speak some English, smile and offer suggestions to you. The hotel even has access to a roof deck with incredible beach and ocean views. I imagine it would be a great place to bring a nice bottle of wine and watch a sunset.

I think this wonderful restaurant is really what makes La Playa a truly unique in Isla Verde. I did not see any other hotels on the strip that had a restaurant literally on the water. Even if you don't stay here, come for at least one meal. As others have mentioned, part of the restaurant is a patio built on piers. The waves splash underneath you as you drink you coffee in the morning, you look out on the ocean, and see, yes, manatees! playing in front of you. It is undergoing a menu change into a wine bar with 70+ different bottles and live local music on the weekends. Their bottled beer selection was also impressive. I just enjoyed sitting on this patio feeling the ocean spray, drinking coffee, and watching surfers. perfect.

This is not where to go for a traditional, never leave the premises resort experience. What it is, is a perfect place to relax and enjoy the beach for a few days; or a great home base as you explore the island. I could see spending the day snorkeling in Culebra, hiking El Yunque or shopping in Old San Juan, then coming home to this beautiful spot, close to the airport.

In short: lovely decor, great service, beach access, free parking, comfortable rooms, and a wonderful daily breakfast. I almost didn't want to write this review because I don't want it to become so busy and expensive I can't go back! Enjoy it while you can. Nos vemos pronto, Playita!

Stayed December 2010, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2010

The little restaurant had an incredible view. Price was a little high, but we crowded 5 people into one room to cut down on costs a little. Great access to the beach. The staff was very helpful. We even left our tennis shoes and they saved them for us to retreive after a week away to Vieques.

Stayed February 2010, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Raleigh, NC
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 20, 2010

We had a great stay at La Playa hotel for the two nights we were in San Juan before heading off on a cruise. I chose this hotel because, unlike the other beachfront (and not so beachfront) hotels on Isla Verde, this looked to be the best value for location.

The location was excellent. While there was no accessible beach area directly at the hotel, the beach was across a small street- no dodging traffic or anything. The rooms weren't fancy, but who's going to spend time in the room? Our room (a double) was very clean, very quiet, and very comfortable. The bathroom looked like it had been updated and we even had a side view of the ocean.

The hotel bar and restaurant was beautiful- it was an open area that was right on the ocean. And I mean right on top of the ocean. If you were on the deck and the sea was a bit rough, you definitely got at least sprinkled whenever the waves crashed. The food and drinks were a little overpriced, but pretty much in line with any of the other beachfront restaurants in the area. The service was a bit slow, but we were never in a rush, so it didn't bother us. Food and drinks were very good, too.

It was an easy walk to the main street of Isla Verde, where there are lots of restaurants, bars, and shops. We ate at a restaurant one night, but didn't go to any bars or clubs, so can't really offer any views on that.

One note is that the service at La Playa was excellent. It is a small hotel (15 rooms, I think) and has the feel of a family run place. Everyone we interacted with was very helpful and nice. We had to have a package overnighted to the hotel and the front desk was gracious enough to call us at 8:30 in the evening while we were out to dinner to let us know that it had arrived.

This is a place we will definitely stay at again without any hesitations!

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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.
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Additional Information about Hotel La Playa

Address: 6 Calle Amapola, Isla Verde, Carolina 00979, Puerto Rico
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Carolina > Isla Verde
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Best Value Hotel in Isla Verde
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Isla Verde
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel La Playa 3*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Newly renovated 15-room motel-style hotel, restaurant and bar in Isla Verde - only 5 minutes from San Juan's airport. Only 10 steps to the best beach in San Juan from our front door. La Playita restaurant and bar on ocean-front deck for fantastic views. New 'Miami-style' design and decor feature new beds, flat-panel cable TV, air conditioning, new bathrooms and complementary continental breakfast every morning. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
La Playa Hotel
La Playa Carolina
Hotel La Playa Puerto Rico/Isla Verde

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