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“Beautiful View! Perfect resort for family with teenagers.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

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El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   1000 El Conquistador Avenue, Fajardo 00738, Puerto Rico   |  
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Rates from $179
Ranked #2 of 3 hotels in Fajardo
Jacksonville, Florida
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
“Beautiful View! Perfect resort for family with teenagers.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2012

Let me start out by saying that we had a really nice time for our two night, three day visit. We used our Hilton Honors points and were given a fairly large beautiful room down near the Marina in the building right next to the water- park. ( Room 1243) It had a beautiful balcony and the only thing it overlooked was the water! I would agree with other reviews that the resort is dated and could use some updating however you can not beat the scenery! The main part of the hotel is on the top of a cliff with numerous pools, restaurants,casino, Starbucks, ice cream parlor etc. To get to the bottom of the resort you take a glass walled elevator and then funicular( tram) to the bottom of the resort where you will find the Marina, water-park, ferry to Palimino Island, Outdoor Bar and another restaurant and additional rooms in various buildings. The resort is spread out so you WILL do some walking. The ferry ride to Palimino Island took about 10 minutes and we had lunch at the outdoor restaurant. We did not wait long for the ferry. The beach was nice and you could rent jet skis, kayaks, and other water toys. We had two teenage girls with us and this was the perfect resort for them as felt like they had a little independence with so many places to wander. You can take a five to ten minute walk outside of the resort to the the area where all the Bioluminescent Bay tours leave from. You leave the resort through a gate right near the Scuba building and follow the road along the water to a little town where you will find MANY companies to chose from. You can make reservations with the hotel however it will be cheaper to make your own. I would recommend making reservations ahead of time. Since the tours are in the evening and it is dark you would NOT want your teenagers to venture out of the resort by themselves and walk back from the tours by themselves. There are areas that are not well lit and lots of people hanging out in cars and partying. Although the resort really could use some updating, I noticed that there were always workers cleaning windows, sweeping walkways etc. It is somewhat dated so know this when you book. It is easy to find things that need improvement but it really is beautiful! Just go and enjoy the scenery!!

Room Tip: The rooms near the Marina and Water-park looked on the outside as if they were updated. The lower l...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 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 (840)
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English first
Allentown, Pennsylvania
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2012

As many have said, "beautiful hotel", after that not many more positives to add. The beach on the private island is beautiful and a fun ride on the ferry. Dont bother with the horseback riding as it is a ripoff!!!! $69pp for a ride up and down the hill, which you can walk! We had a very confussing time with breakfast as a Hilton Diamond memember I was told at checkin all of us were included, however each day that seemed to change. There were even days where my 12 year old was charged as an adult.
Excursions are expensive so look to outside places which might offer a better buy. Our favorite was the Biobay with East Island Adventures, a short 15 minute drive from El Conquistador. A bit expensive at over $100pp (includes dinner) but well worth it, especially the bus ride ;-)
The guide on the plantoon boat was very knowledgable and friendly and you get to have water poured over you which will just make you glow-cant do that on the kayak trips!
The other two places we visited was the rainforest and Old San Juan. Rent a car for both as i understand the excursions are way overpriced and if you book with Enterprise Rent a Car on line only $50/day-we rented form2 days which we drove to the rainforest the morning of the Biobay tour at night. Oh yea, the printed directions from the concierge are terrible so keep your eyes open and use common sense. The big plus is that the pools are open 24/7 but all the other activities end at 5pm-private island and waterpark.

Chuck A from PA

Room Tip: We had ocean view near the Funicular which was a but noisey.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
west hartford, ct
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2012 via mobile

My friend and I stayed here for vacation in June 2012. I was a bit worried after reading some of the recent reviews but am very glad we didn't listen and went anyway. The hotel is huge and is absolutely gorgeous! The front desk staff was helpful and let us check in early and even upgraded our room to ocean view. The room was clean and very modern looking. Bathroom was clean and very spacious. The pools were very nice and the prettiest one was in the la casitas portion of the hotel. They had an Infiniti pool and hot tub in that section. Lots of shopping options for souvenirs beach wear etc. but like any resort was overpriced. Many dining options but the only restaurant of the fancier options that we ate at was the Italian restaurant. It was very expensive and although the food was ok it was not worth the price. Again this is expected at a resort. Heard many complaints about the food being overpriced in other reviews as well.
There are cheaper options and for breakfast there is always the Starbucks option if you don't want to spend an arm and a leg for breakfast (I heard the breakfast buffet was 25 dollars each).
Now on to my only true complaint about the resort. There is almost nothing to do at night. There is a small casino in the resort but during the week it is only open till midnight. There is a bar inside the casino but there was never anyone in it. They also have what they called a sports bar which consisted of a small tv and 2 tables in the side of the lobby! There was a martini bar which also closed early which no one was at when we went either. They really need some nightly entertainment like dancers and Spanish music to liven up the place. Because of the location of the resort there really is no options nearby for nightlife so this is the one thing they can improve on. I was happy to hear that the pools were open 24 hrs which was good. Overall beautiful resort and would stay again although next time I might want to try out san Juan area. I also want to state that I never saw a bug the whole time I was there which was good. It must mean they really keep on top of cleanliness.
Some other suggestions worth noting. I would try not to stay on the marina level. It is away from the main part of the resort and require you taking the tram down which can be time consuming. Plus it's so disconnected from everything. Palomino Island is absolutely gorgeous and i definitely recommend spending atleast a day over there. And if you are looking for a good excursion do the bio bay kayaking and rainforest hike!

  • Stayed June 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2012

Excellent: Location away from crowds, golf,views, private island, restaurants, food, family friendliness.
Good: The property and the Spa while acceptable in general, could certainly use some updating and renovation for the room rate they are charging.
Overall, it is a great and picturesque resort to spend a week and has some unique features such as a private island (Palomino) with nice beach and water sports; a gondola like vehicle (similar to what you find in ski resorts) called "Furnicular" which transports you from the main resort at the top of hill to the private waterfront and docks where you can take the free ferry every 30 minutes to the private island. Ferry ride takes about 10-15 minutes. There are restrurants and bars at the waterfront as well. All the restaurants are great. You have ample choice of various cuisines. It is about an hour or so away from San Juan airport. Winding roads, so going into town and back should be done during daylight hours. Somewhat overpriced but still a great vacation experience and I would say worth the money if you can work a good room rate deal by doing some research.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Glen Ellyn, Illinois, United States
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2012

First off, I would recommend you stay at the lost casitas village(part of the resort). The infinity pool was great and so where the rooms and views. They defiantly beat the other rooms at the main place. The resort was large and you had to be shuttled by golf cart everywhere. The beach was on its own island. The pools where okay. The restaurant choices where minimal. The water park was GREAT but crowded. It was an okay place to stay.

Room Tip: Las casiatas village
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Memphis, Tennessee
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2012

In a word - fantastico!  After the tribulations of travel from San Juan airport which involved a liberal interpretation of traffic laws (or fun games, as I like to call them),  such as "Red rover, red rover, I'm coming the heck over", Chicken (aka merging), and "Who can drive slowest in the fast lane" (no real equivalent), El Conquistador was a balm for my wounded spirit.  The incredibly lush, manicured grounds welcome you into paradise...until you get to the front desk on a Sunday afternoon.  Apparently there was a huge promotion for PR residents who I would hazard a guess weren't paying the nearly ~$200/nt I was! I stood in line for over an hour as the amazingly long line wended its way slowly to the front.  Off to the side is a small desk for Hilton Honors guests to check in...it wasn't mentioned by the bellman when I arrived, and I didn't spot it until I was in the geographical vicinity, which was 45 mins into my wait.  I couldn't remember if I was a member (I was), but I had time to sign up on my phone and accumulate some points by the time I got to the main desk.  Sign up for the plan if you don't have it...well worth it!  The desk staff were great and once checked in, we got to the room to see the most incredible view!  The room was clean and well-appointed, although the hallway noise was a little loud.  

Palomino is the resort's private island and is beautiful.  We saw baby sharks swimming along the shallows and the water was crystal clear.  They accept nothing but room charge on the island, so be prepared.  Also, no outside food or drink...not even a bottle of water, and they search your bag to be sure.

The breakfast buffet at Las Brisas is $24 for adults/$12 for children, but has a ton of food, so if you are a big breakfast person, go for it.  All the casual restaurants are decent, about what you would expect for resort prices.  (Since my husband refused to set foot off the resort until we left, we got to try them all.)  The Stingray is the only fine dining place we tried.  I had a $45 lobster tail that was worth every penny...highly recommend it!

I had the opportunity to venture out ino the local area as I was here for work and was always excited to return to the resort.  Not very much to do that I found, but probably more if you speak Spanish.

I travelled the length and breadth of PR on my visit, and this is the one place I would return to.  You feel pampered and catered to and it's gorgeous.  A++

Room Tip: We stayed on the 2nd floor of the main building and the views were beautiful. Little noisy with doo...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Charleston, South Carolina
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2012

We stayed here the week before memorial day. The entire hotel is beautiful and all the people are friendly. It's true you don't have to leave the resort for anything but after a week it gets a little expensive. They have a golf course, we got massages at the spa, took the boat ride to Palomino Island. We loved it and will go back again someday. The Italian restaurant and the sushi restaurant are both excellent.

  • Stayed May 2012, 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

Address: 1000 El Conquistador Avenue, Fajardo 00738, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Fajardo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 hotels in Fajardo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Award-winning oceanfront resort perched atop cliff, overlooking Caribbean Sea on one side & Atlantic Ocean on the other. Check out the dramatic views, the private island or the brand new water park - it's all part of this Caribbean paradise. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Conquistador Resort, a Waldorf Astoria Hotel Fajardo
Waldorf Astoria Fajardo
El Conquistador Hotel Puerto Rico
Conquistador Hotel Puerto Rico
El Conquistador Puerto Rico
El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort Puerto Rico/Fajardo

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