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“Rooms are clean, nice, but not what I would consider "4-star"”

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The Condado Plaza Hilton
Ranked #22 of 47 Hotels in San Juan
Reviewed January 6, 2012

Maybe it's just me, but I feel like the hotel room that we were in is very comparable to other "3 star" places I've stayed at. Our room was clean and spacious, and I loved the white tiled floors, light colored walls, minimal dark furnishings. I am not a fan of carpet, dark colored floors, and walls because I am bedbug paranoid. The City View room had your typical queen bed, two dressers, desk, desk chair, chaise lounge, small closet, balcony and small fridge. The free electronic safe was very cool and useful. The location is awesome - super-duper close to the Beach, Walgreens, restaurants/bars, bus stop, and 15 minutes from the airport. We stayed at the tower where the pool is. The walls were a bit thin because some nights we could hear music pounding from one of the corporate event rooms down on the first floor (our room was on the third floor).

As a gym rat, I was very impressed by their fitness facility. They had nice commercial grade elliptical machines, stationary bikes, and treadmills. They had weight machines, free weights, medicine balls and even kettlebells! There's a steam room, sauna room, and even indoor jacuzzi. Interesting thing to note is everything inside their fitness faciltiy is co-ed. The indoor jacuzzi was awesome to have because the outdoor one was too freakin' hot! We asked the pool guy working there if he could turn down the temp on the outdoor jacuzzi and he told us he couldn't and that it was just one temperature. Hmm..odd...since it was perfect the first day we were there. Just glad there was an alternative.

The best thing about our hotel deal was the $30 a day voucher for two people for breakfast at the Cafe upstairs. Technically you could be very well fed and just pay the tip! Food in PR is expensive and having a free hearty breakfast is a great way to start off the day and allows for a light lunch (which can be bought a nearby Subway)!

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank lisacat l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 6, 2012

The hotel was okay but nothing special. The food was pretty crappy and overpriced too. The staff, however was quite pleasant. I reserved two rooms for six days and Hilton emailed me a confirmation. The confirmation contained a Total cost, including taxes at the bottom line. When I checked out, they said I owed an additional 14% for a resort fee. Sure enough, buried in the fine print several pages down, was the 14%. This was not included in the original Total. It was DECEPTIVE and left a bad taste. Hilton also double billed my credit card. They did fix the double billing but I really didn't want to spend my time dealing with that sort of thing, nor should I have had to. I will not be doing business with Hilton ever again.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank chjerseyman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LeahRossi, Front Office Manager at The Condado Plaza Hilton, responded to this reviewResponded January 11, 2012

Dear Chjerseyman,

I am happy to see that you enjoyed the service from our staff; we expect nothing less. In response to your comment about our resort fee, I am sorry that this fee came as a surprise to you. Many properties do not have a resort fee, therefore, one certainly does have to read the entire confirmation letter for properties such as ours, where additional charges may apply; e.g. resort fees or parking, etc. that are not included in your offer price. Our Resort Fee includes internet services, newspapers, unlimited local phone calls, 24-hour access to our Casino, Business Center, Fitness Center and outdoor facilities. It also includes complimentary activities such as yoga and other fun events depending on the time of year. I am sorry this has left you with a bad perception and hope that you may re-consider in the future.

Thank you for posting your comments following your stay with us and I hope you enjoyed your visit to Puerto Rico.

Sincerely,

Leah Rossi
Concierge
Guest Services Manager
leah.rossi@conradhotels.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2012

It was my second stay at the Conrad...... this time, on the Lagoon side. It was just as beautiful, as the ocean side! Sunrise was gorgeous. And the different water sports... were fun to watch.
I enjoy this hotel, for many reasons.. There's so much to do, on the property! Great pools, restaurants, decks on the Lagoon side, excellent snorkling on site, gorgeous scenery, excellent service, great lobby bar, nice gym, casino, gift shop... you never have to leave! But if you do... you're close to everything!

Room Tip: I always ask.... "any upgrades available?" Sometimes, they want to show off the nicer roo...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with friends
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3  Thank TexasTravelChic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LeahRossi, Front Office Manager at The Condado Plaza Hilton, responded to this reviewResponded January 5, 2012

Dear TexasTravelChic ,

I really enjoyed reading your review of your latest stay with us. It is nice to see that you enjoyed your stay in one of our Laguna View rooms, which differ from the Ocean, but has much to offer as well. We would be more than happy to accomodate you again in the near future.

Always at your service,

Leah Rossi
Concierge
Guest Services Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2012

The pros: Excellent service, very clean rooms, great views (we had an ocean view and it was gorgeous), large casino, modern design, convenient location. Excellent restaurant in Pikayo.

The cons: Our room had no drawers! The hotel only has two main elevators per tower, and they broke down often. We had to factor in elevator waiting time when making plans.

  • Stayed: December 2011
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1  Thank bmartin94
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2012

Before you read this review I wanted ti give you some background information. I traveled to this property from Christmas day until New Years Day with my wife and two year old daughter. I am also from a "snob" town in NJ and I own several vacation clubs with 5 star resort company's hence when I travel I expect only the best.

My family and I were beyond apprehensive/afraid to travel to this hotel after reading the comments that have been posted by previous guests. By writing this review I intend to provide you with the real truths about this property and the area so you can travel with some ease. Understand that people who review hotels on this or any site come from various areas of the country where the dollar goes farther and some who are not used to traveling at all. I have also learned and witnessed first hand that certain individuals will write a really poor review because they did not get something that they wanted from the hotel such as an upgrade.

Having visited this hotel I can clearly say that I really cannot validate any of the comments that were listed by disgruntled unhappy guests.

Understand that this property is at the far end of Condado Beach so you do have to walk approx 10 mins to get to the main area where the restaurants are. Keep in mind that several restaurants are within 3 mins of the hotel including Ropa Vieja and Chilis which I provided more information on below. If walking is an issue that you need to stay at a hotel that will better service your needs. Also understand that Puerto Rico is an Island and that almost everything needs to be brought in. Hence the fact that things cost more! See food area below.

I attempted to give you a background on my trip and I also hi-lighted key areas below.

When we arrived at the Condado Plaza we were greeted promptly by Andres(bell hop) who said they he would take care of our bags and have them up to our room in no time. Andres had a smile the entire week and was always there for us opening the door as we came back to the hotel from our daily walks.
Next, we had the pleasure of meeting/dealing with Jaminelly who checked us in immediately(bare in mind we arrived on Christmas day and it was packed). I asked if we were able to get an upgrade and Jaminelly was able to take care of that for us without question. Her personality and willingness to help was infectious. We checked into the room and were pleasantly surprised and happy to be at this property. We stayed across the street in the building that sits on the lagoon side. The buildings are connected via a sky walk across the roadway. I still had an ocean view and a lagoon view. The room we were given was tremendous to the tune of a NYC apartment. We did not have the glass enclosed shower however we did have a tub and an enormous bathroom. This suited us better as we had a two year old with us who only takes baths. The room had two rooms for lack of a better description each of them with flat screen TV's. We had a fridge and microwave and enough closet/draw space for a huge family.

All of the individuals we encountered during our vacation were polite, had smiles on their faces and went out of their way to ensure we had a great week. We always felt welcomed no matter where we were in the hotel. The hotel was manicured perfectly and members of the staff were always cleaning the various areas of the property on a daily basis.

It seems as if others complained about the aesthtics of the building. When I travel I never have taken aesthetics into account. Yes the building is older. Yes they have completely redone the lobby and other areas. But who cares what the building looks like? Are you buying a condo or office across the street? No your their for a vacation and only should worry about service and amentities, not the fact that the building is getting worn.

Activities/Amenities:
As for activities, my wife and daughter loved the morning zumba and the activities for the kids were a nice thought including the movie by the pool, the feeding of the fish and the jump/bounce castle. Even the little things such as the ice pops and the starbucks samples were a great addition to a warm afternoon. The hotel also had great hammocks right by the ocean wall to lay on in the afternoon. I am not sure what else people would want from the resort. The hotel has three pools. The main pool is a huge L with a swim up bar (that has 20 seats) and a water slide. No its not typhoon lagoon at disney but it has several turns and is still fun. The beach is small and borders the road however, that is what you get where the location is in Condado. The beach had approx 250 people on it the day I was there, if thats not enough space for you I am not sure what is. I never had a problem with towels or chairs. In addition, the hotel instituted a security bracelet system to avoid anyone coming up from the beach that did not belong.

The casino is small but has over 200 machines and 10-12 tables. Since you can only occupy one sit I am not sure why there is an issue.
Cab ride to Old San Juan is $18-20 or you can take the bus for .75 Yoou can't blame the hotel for the bus not coming on time. Ashford ave gets backed up hence the buses get backed up.

Food:

Everything will cost you more in Puerto Rico. Even starbucks and dunkin donuts will be approx 50 cents to 1.00 more at least per item. There is a Walgreens approx 10 min walk down Ashford Ave. Walgreens is 24 hours and has everything from bottled water to liquor to a grocery section that has frozen aunt jemima pancakes etc. Go there get some basics to avoid having to get nailed for it everyday.
The first day in we went to Chilis as we arrived late. What I can tell you for at least lunch there was only a difference of approximately $2 dollars per dish. To me it was worth it to just eat at the hotel for $2 more. The hotel was in line with every other restaurant in the area of the same quality. Yes, it is expensive for a burger 12.95 but its inline with other restaurants. It seems as if an average lunch will cost two people $30 with a tip. Dinner with two drinks, appetizer, two entrees and a desert in most restaurants will cost $100-110.

Ropa Vieja: a must go to. 3-5 minute walk from hotel. Puerto Rican cuisine. Order the sampler platter and a must have is the ropa vieja which is shredded steak. I also had the seafood risotto which was amazing.

Miro: Seafood approx 10 min walk from hotel. This was one of the best meals I have eaten and I am from the NY area. we had the calamari which was amazing and seafood paella for two. The profiterole we ordered were all eaten by my two year old before we could get to it.

Tijuanas: 10 minute walk down ashford one block past miro. This is the best mexican food in the area and great prices. Be careful if you order the madre magarita as it will cost you more than your entire bill and will make you so drunk that you will not get home. Its a huge huge punch bowl! However the meals here are within $14 to $20 range.

Voga: this is located 5-7 minutes down ashford ave in the renaissance hotel. It was an upscale italian meal. I ordered the lasagna which was pasta noodles made fresh. My wife had the chicken marsala which was huge. We ordered spinach dip as an appetizer and sharerd the cheesecake lollipops. This restaurant was really good. Service was great and food quality was very good.

Al Dente: We originally tried to eat at Raices both of these are in Old San Juan. Unfortunately Raices was way too busy but if you have the opportunity go eat there. Al Dente was great food, reasonable prices but slightly high. Service was great.

Dannys International and Mike's Pizza good for lunch or pizza.

Breakfast we ate twice at the hotel and it was approxiamtely $30 for two omlettes and juices and a muffin. slightly expensive but if you eat off site its approximately $10 per dish plus tax and tip.


The only issue that we had was that Aqua the restaurant by the pool was unable to handle to amount of people that came into the patio restaurant one day and it take forver to get food. However, Julio took care of our bill because we waited too long. This problem was corrected the next day and food and beverage managers were onsite to make sure things were going smooth.


The following individuals made our stay:
Aqua: Ninatoshka was a great server who always went out of her way to see my daughter Maya whether we ate at the restaurant or not. She always had a smile on her face and spent time talking to me and my wife while we sat down to eat.
Housekeeping: Norma who serviced the room was great. She made sure we had anything we needed and the room was always in perfect clean order.
Activities Staff: Both of the activities personnel who conducted Zumba(I don’t remember their names)were great. They always went out of their way to ensure guests were having a good time. One morning our chairs were in the way of Zumba and needed to be moved. These individuals did not let us move our chairs, they insisted that they took care of it. They also made sure to come and get my two year old daughter to do zumba as they saw she really enjoyed it. Again, going above and beyond.
Bell Hop: Andres
Pool: Locastra was always asking how she could make things better.
Monica at the towel desk always had a smile on and made sure to tell every guest to have a great day and enjoy the weather.

We will definitely be coming back to the Condado Plaza in the near future. You will not be disappointed.

Room Tip: ask for an upgrade, if you don't ask you probably won't receive.
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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19  Thank brad7815
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2012

Spent New Years Eve - Dec 31 - Jan 2 here in an ocean view room. We asked for a high floor and we were on the 9th floor (10 floors in hotel) We loved our room! there were 4 of us travelling together and all found the room to be very spacious and most importantly the room had great air conditioning and comfortable beds. Will stay here again - felt very safe here, great pools and a snorkeling beach on site plus we were close to Old San Juan. Even though it was New Years Eve, with a big party going on downstairs, the room was quiet. Would recommend this hotel to anyone

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Rhonda N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2012

My boyfriend and I checked into the Condado. We immediately disliked it from the beginning. Pigeons will attach you at the pool, the beach is disgusting and open to the public! The girl at the from desk i think Yahitza Flores wasn't the brightest bulb. We stayed one night and switched to the Ritz where our vacation then started!

Absolutely hated this hotel and would not recommend it at all.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank foodiejsg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Condado Plaza Hilton

Address: 999 Ashford Avenue, San Juan 00907, Puerto Rico (Formerly Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > San Juan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in San Juan
#7 On the Beach Hotel in San Juan
#12 Luxury Hotel in San Juan
#15 Business Hotel in San Juan
Price Range: $202 - $345 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Condado Plaza Hilton 4*
Number of rooms: 572
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Condado Plaza Hilton, the only hotel overlooking both the Atlantic Ocean and Condado Lagoon, is an enchanting alternative to typical San Juan hotel. Our unique location boasts cool ocean breezes, breathtaking sunsets, and a shimmering, protected beach. Whether you're traveling for work or play, this sparkling hotel offers it all, superb dining options including the award-winning Pikayo restaurant, elegant event venues, three glistening pools, water slide, waterports, 24-hour fitness center, tennis, poolside massage and bustling nightlife. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza Hotel San Juan
San Juan Conrad
Condado Plaza Hotel San Juan
Hotel Resort Wyndham

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