This charming, intimate hotel is perfect if you like uniqueness at every turn. It blends in perfectly with the cobblestone streets and old buildings, and unlike most hotels, things aren't where you expect them and that's the fun of it. The outdoor seating areas are large and spread out over two levels. The wine and cheese hour is fabulous, with unique wines I had never tried before - not your typical "whatever is cheapest" you find elsewhere. Some thought actually went into this which I find refreshing. Staff keeps the bottles coming too, and mixes them up so there's always something new to try. There is a laid back graciousness that prevails here. You immediately feel at home, you want to linger. Each floor has an open air walkway that overlooks a tree filled courtyard. Two restauraunts (on two different floors) adds to the uniqueness. Unlike some commentors, we found it perfectly quiet. There is a special, sound proof door 5 feet inside your room that closes off the bedroom. Once closed, you hear nothing. Perhaps not every room had this? I thought is was quite novel actually! I could stay here a month and feel right at home...
Now the drawbacks... The ridiculous "resort" charge. First of all, this is not a resort. They are quick to mention you can enjoy resort like properties at their sister property, but that is simply wrong to charge people for something that isn't even there. Sorry, it just is. The resort charge is percentage based too, so, if you are paying more for your room, it becomes a more expensive resort charge. Secondly, I realize and appreciate that this is a SLH hotel and historic property, but at NYC prices, I'm not quite sure it's worth the price. Especially considering the room sizes are really quite small. Lastly, and this could have been just our luck, but we sat at their bar for 10-15 minutes and nobody acknowledged us, or took our order, or said I'll be with you in a minute. So we left and drank elsewhere. There were THREE people behind the bar too.
All in all we loved this place, but pricing is a little off for what you get, and the sky high resort charge for nothing gives you that "gotcha" feel. Too bad...
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in the heart of historic Old San Juan, Hotel El Convento has set new standards of luxury, comfort and service while preserving the rich character of this former 16th century convent. This landmark treasure, a member of Historic Hotels of America and Small Luxury Hotels of the World, has earned four diamonds from AAA each year since its opening. This is the exclusive hotel experience to indulge the most discriminating of travelers, and is a hotel like no other. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- El Convento San Juan