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“Very medicore and poor customer service”

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The Condado Plaza Hilton
Ranked #24 of 48 Hotels in San Juan
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
37 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Very medicore and poor customer service”
Reviewed January 10, 2013

The staff here is absolutely terrible. Nobody takes ownership of an issue and solves a problem, they just look to pass you off to someone else.

Since we've been here the following things have not worked:
-A/C in the fitness center
-An escalator
-WiFi
-One of the pools (is closed for work--which is going on all day on the pool deck)

On the first night we were here, we noticed (very quickly) that the temperature in the fitness center was sauna-like. We called the front desk and got transferred no fewer than 4 or 5 times before being finally hung up on "by mistake" (though it happened twice in a row, so...). We walked over and spoke to a front desk manager who assured us she was going to send someone over right away. A man in a working uniform came in, walked over to a closet, opened it, saw it was the wrong closet and walked out of the room. Never saw anyone again, and the AC wasn't fixed.

The next day, we again inquired about the AC and got the same runaround before being hung up on.

The following day, the third of our stay, we spoke to someone who finally admitted that it was broken and they were going to "buy a new AC" for it. I asked when--would it be today--and she just laughed as if to say, "yeah right." So now that it's acknowledged that the AC was broken, I asked what's being done to accommodate guests, can we go to other Hiltons nearby, a private facility with vouchers, what? This question baffled them as accommodating guests is not part of their MO. They said they'd find out from a manager if they could get vouchers for the place up the street, but they didn't call back to let me know... shocking...

So we've been going up the street to International Fitness and paying $15 each every day. It's a fine facility and we'd be fine with the walk up there as things happen, but the hotel needs to make an effort to accommodate guests.

The wifi doesn't work very well (maybe 20% of the time), and when it does it's slow. Since we've been here they're also doing construction/remodeling/something on one of the main pools. It's drained and caution-taped off, and of course the other pool is crowded as a result.

While minor, I also want to point out that our room is advertised as having a 42" TV, and the TV in our room is 32" at a maximum. Not normally a big deal in a hotel, but we were here during the national championship game.

Also, don't eat at the Denny's downstairs. It's horrible. Ben & Jerry's nearby (seriously) has great food and very reasonable prices and farther down we also really liked Pure & Natural juice bar--though they have good food as well.

In sum, this hotel would be fairly good if the staff took any interest in guest comfort--but they don't. The rooms are of decent sized, well-furnished and clean. The bathroom is nice and the porch is sizeable. But I simply can't recommend anyone stay here as disinterested staff, broken amenities, and no ownership of problems seems to be business as usual here.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank SoundGuyDC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
145 reviews
60 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
Reviewed January 9, 2013

We checked into a room on the 10th floor. Very nice room! Very expensive room! It was our anniversary so we splurged! The problem was the street noise. We felt like we were at street level and not on the 10th floor. No sleeping that night at all. So much traffic and yelling from people below us. Horrible experience! Also when you check in they hit you with a resort fee - 16% of your room rate. The internet was terrible - so not sure what we were paying for. Also the food at the Caribe Cafe is not very good at all. Dinner was so expensive and certainly not worth the trouble. On our return trip we requested a room not on the street side - so much better. Also I would suggest skipping eating at the hotel and just eat at the Denny's that is onsite. The food was so much better.

Room Tip: Request a room that does not face the street!!! Also - eat at Denny's and not the hotel!
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank travel4funRA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MichelleBurn, Guest Relations Manager at The Condado Plaza Hilton, responded to this review, January 21, 2013
Dear travel4funra,

First of all, thank you for your candid feedback of your stay with us. I thank you for selecting us for such a special occasion as your anniversary and truly apologize that we did not meet expectations. I was extremely disappointed to read from your review that you had some issues at our hotel. I am sorry if you encountered some noise issues during your stay. I also regret that you were not satisfied with our food selection during your dinner and that you had problems with our internet connection. I can assure you that our main priority is for our guest to have an exceptional stay with us and we will do everything we need to do to ensure that these issues are corrected. Thank you again for your feedback and I invite you back to stay with us the next time your travels bring you to the area.

Kind regards,

Michelle Burn
Guest Relations Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 7, 2013

if it was not for the good location, the single usable tennis court (not 2 as advertised!) and the nicely landscaped pool area this hotel would have nothing going for itself.

stayed there four nights over NYE. our pre-paid room type (Ocean View King) was not available upon check-in even though we had called two days prior to re-confirm and were only brusquely informed of this after a 15 minute check-in procedure during which the front desk agent (a trainee as are most employees at the desk) had to ask the manager Mr. Almonte for assistance who was not any more helpful other than able to offer vouchers for the casino and f&b outlets and given a room with ocean view for the first night with a move planned on the second day to a higher floor. we were eventually escorted to a freight elevator because the only guest elevator serving the 2nd floor was out of order (and stayed this way on and off during our stay) which we shared with garbage cans and several hotel staff!
the 'concierge desk' is equally a joke - it's barely a tour desk, the team there do not know anything beyond the products they sell
the tennis court located on the bay side of the complex are first come first serve although the water sports cabana staff may try to tell you otherwise, is well maintained
the most professional staff we found to be the 'pool concierge' - efficient and friendly, these girls should train the rest of the hotel's staff.
on the second day we got stuck in the pool side elevator along with 5 other guests around 5pm. thankfully it took only about 10 minutes to get us out. as opposed to an apology, the men letting us off the elevator in the basement were just cracking jokes. we later noticed that on some floors there were signs that the elevator was out of order but we had still been able to call it!
the Cafe Caribe on the mezzanine level resembles a Cafeteria, it is bare of any tasteful decor and service is completely hap-hazard, Pikayo seemed to be better run because it was so busy throughout our stay that there was never any room for us, Eight Noodle Bar opposite the Casino offers quick service and snacks in an airport-like ambiance, Aqua Bar seems to be run by amateurs, Starbucks on the street side and out the door of the hotel is a gods end, the pool bar is fine when you absolutely don't want to leave your chair
the rooms were spacious and fairly clean, if a bit shabby

in summary a shockingly poor experience - most likely our first and last in a Conrad - expect to deal with lots of amateurs - expect to wait for most service and having to prompt/demand everything - not what one seeks when on vacation!

one day we strolled down the avenue to the (beautiful and modern) Marriott, what a difference! a friendly and helpful staff member took us by elevator to the beach side restaurant and when she realized that it was not serving at that time she showed us to the beach bar and offered along with the rest of the team there a great experience, the concierge team and the (separate) lady at the tour desk were also very switched on and offered a lot of accurate and valuable tips

Room Tip: try the Marriott Hotel!
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank ursnyc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2013

This is one of the worst hotels I have ever stayed at.

The experience from the beginning of the stay, until the end, was very disappointing. Upon entering the hotel, we could smell mold. It was amazingly strong. We proceeded to registration (it was 3:45pm and check in was at 4pm), but were unable to get into our room until 5:30pm. When we entered our room, I was appalled at how dirty and poorly maintained it was. The bathroom was filthy, had prior guests old shampoo container left in the shower, had mold in almost every corner, including the shower curtain, and had rust and decay on the sink base and bathroom scale. The fridge exterior was dirty, as was the couch in the room. The couch had so many stains I would never sit on it. The windows to the small balcony were dirty as well. A light was out in the bathroom, the safe didn’t work and the fan in the second AC unit did not work.

During our weeks stay the cleaning staff showed 3-4 times. Each time the room was left almost as dirty as before they arrived. They never cleaned the bathroom counter, only adding a shampoo or 2. The soap dish was never cleaned and bathroom drinking glasses never replaced. The shower was barely touched as well. The counter in the main area was also never cleaned and the few glasses (that were used) were not replaced, but appeared to only be wiped out.

All common areas were just as dirty. This would include the main lobby area, deck overlooking the ocean and pools. Rust and decay could be found everywhere, on pool chairs, umbrella stands, railings, etc. The pool bar was so bad it had pieces missing. The pool itself had debris everywhere.

We did complain several times but nothing came of it. Cleaning service did not improve and there was no attempt by the hotel to make amends of any kind. The room, with taxes included, was $2,900 for the week. One would think the hotel, a “Conrad”, would be more concerned about its appearance and the feedback from the guests. It wasn't.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
9 Thank Chicagoan-28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Hamilton, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2013

We had booked this resort after researching the property on line. It is advertised as a 4.5 star resort. We had 2 rooms as our adult children joined us. One of the rooms reeked of mold. We asked to change due to allergies. The second room was not available until 12:15 AM. We kept being told it was being cleaned. (for over 4 hours). When my family was allowed to occupy the room, the bathroom was filthy with vomit and excrement. My family was disgusted, but cleaned it up. We were sick of waiting. The next day the manager told us that he would issue a $150 credit which was not acceptable. Our travel agent managed to obtain that first night for no charge for one of the rooms. The beach was okay, but small. The casino was nice. We were there over New Years Weekend. There is also no express check-out. At check out time on January 2nd, there were 25-30 people in line being serviced by only two employees. I was told that we could lock our travel bags in lockers for the afternoon as we had a late flight. None of the locks were operational. I managed to convince an employee to allow us to leave them in his office. More than one employee told me that if they were traveling, this would be the last place they would stay.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank JAS1954
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
43 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2013

The Conrad in Condadado Plaza is has some of the best views on the island. The lobby and restaurants are very nice. However, the hotel staff is awful. The rooms are nicely furnished but poorly maintained. During a one week stay, I needed to change rooms because of all the minor maintenance issues. The new room also had problems. I was so fed up, I checked out and switched to the Doubletree down the street. For future reference, the Doubletree is cheaper, nicer, and has excellent staff.

Room Tip: There are 2 towers, the ocean view side is preferable.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank tjshem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MichelleBurn, Guest Relations Manager at The Condado Plaza Hilton, responded to this review, January 8, 2013
Dear tjshem,

First of all, thank you for your review of your past stay at our hotel. We always appreciate hearing from our guests - including when comments help identify ways we can improve. I understand that you thought that our property was somewhat dated and that there were some maintenance issues that needed to be taken care of. I sincerely appreciate your feedback and I can assure you that our maintenance crew is working on these issues. I especially wanted to apologize if you felt like our service was not up to your expectations. I can assure you that our main priority is for all our guests to experience an exceptional stay and I have personally spoken to our staff regarding your feedback to ensure this does not happen again. Again, I do apologize for any inconveniences you may have had and I hope the next time you return to the area you consider staying with us again.

Wishing you a Happy New Year!

All the best,

Michelle Burn
Guest Relations Manager
michelle.burn@conradhotels.com
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ithaca, New York, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2013

I stayed at this hotel with some friends from December 28th to January 5th 2013. After three or four days, the staff at the desk, restaurants and bars greeted us like family and were always ready to answer questions or give advice about local shops or sights. The beach is small but the water is beautiful and there are larger beaches only a short walk away. Taxi service was always reliable and well staffed, and the hotel is basically equal distance from old San Juan and Isla Verde, which has great parasailing and kayaking opportunities. There were several weddings during our visit with receptions at the bar that were open to hotel guests, so it had a very festive atmosphere on most nights. The New Year's Eve party was expensive yet worth it! $90 for an open bar, live music, and all you can eat breakfast buffet at 4 am. In addition, the information desk helped book tours for us to all parts of the island. Lovely trip, largely thanks to this hotel!

Room Tip: You can choose either ocean or lagoon side. We stayed by the lagoon where it was a little quieter, b...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Juanita M
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

Property: 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:
#6 Spa Hotel in San Juan
#8 On the Beach Hotel in San Juan
#11 Luxury Hotel in San Juan
#15 Business Hotel in San Juan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
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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