My husband and I went to the Wyndham El Conquistador for our 10-year anniversary. We had a really wonderful time. I did so much research before hand, especially this website, which was so helpful. I hope my recap helps...
So... Everything you've written about this resort is true (good and bad).
- (bad) Unless you are situated in Las Vistas or Las Casitas, expect a musty outdated room. We joined Wyndham by Request before arriving, and thank goodness we were upgrated to a beautiful, fantastic room with an ocean view. No complaints from us, but you should have seen the facilities on the lower levels.
- (good) The spa was FANTASTIC! We went twice and had great experiences (massage, facial). They even gave us 20% off for messing up our reservation (worth the inconvenience of rescheduling since everthing at the spa is expensive).
- (bad) And speaking of lower levels, the funiculars (two) were often broken down. One night after raining (they break down more often in the rain), we turned around and decided not to chance it because one or both were often out of order.
- (good) The beach on Palomino Island is incredible. You feel like Gilligan himself. It is definitely worth the ferry ride! Do NOT miss the horseback ride. The views are spectacular, and the guides are super friendly (and knowledgable).
- (bad) The staff is a little confused. I asked the CONCIERGE if I could purchase wine to bring back to my room. I was told no, then walked about 100 yards and found wine being sold in the lobby store!
- (good) The shops were great. Don't miss the jewelery store on the way to the funicular. It just looks expensive. They have very reasonable items that make impressive gifts. Tell Robert Kelly from New York says hello! Great swimsuit stores, too, suits that you don't find in every department store. I wished I'd waited to swimsuit shop there (and comparably priced).
- (bad) The food. Although the food at the fancy restaurants is great, and you feel it's worth the money ($25+up entrees), you just cannot get an inexpensive meal. The $13 salad from the Iguana Cafe was one of the blandest plates of lettuce I've ever eaten. After reading TripAdvisor, I had the foresight to bring a box of granola bars and some snacks for midday, so we got off easier than if we had to eat 3 meals, but even a quick lunch was ridiculously expensive ($12 hamburgers poolside). I'm accustomed to paying a lot for food, living in NY, but I actually felt taken advantage of paying this kind of money.
- (good) Other than the staff being confused, they were all very, very nice and attentive. Any requests for service were met quickly (don't forget to tip).
- (bad/good) Happy Hour was the best value around. 1/2 price drinks poolside from 2-3! Great value. But I do have a complaint about the drinks. Okay, Pina Coladas were supposedly invented in Puerto Rico. Yet, the drinks were made from prepackaged mixes, made here in the states! I felt sort of gyped, like it wasn't really an authentic Pina Colada.
- (good) Great casino! The people could not be nicer, and they had plenty of $5 Blackjack tables.
- (good) The airport transports were a breeze, but a little slow. Figure about an hour in transit from the airport, but the bus waits until it's full, so it might take up to 2 hours to finally arrive.
Here's an extra tip: If you want an authentic Puerto Rican meal (you simply CANNOT find one at any of the restaurants at this resort!), here's what we did: On the day of our departure, we left early, checked into the airport about 4 hours before our flight, then took a 20 minute cabride to Old San Juan where we toured the forts and had a fantastic (authentic) lunch. We also had time to souvenior shop before jumping into a cab (lots available) back to the airport.
Well, that's all I can think of for now. Hope this helps.
Good luck and enjoy!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Award-winning oceanfront resort perched atop a cliff, overlooking Caribbean Sea on one side & Atlantic Ocean on the other. Check out the dramatic views, the private island, relaxing spa golf course or the water park - it's all part of this Caribbean paradise. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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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