Despite some recent reviews which praised the hotel, I still went there with some dread, wondering if I would be saddled with a dirty room, etc. I must say that we were very pleased overall and had a great vacation. We chose the Condado Plaza because the rest of the hotels closer to the airport had negative reviews about the noise level of the planes flying throughout the day.
The hotel occupies two buildings on either side of Ashford Avenue, which are connected by a walk-way from the casino. The main building (the one with the lobby) is towards the ocean and the building opposite is towards the lagoon. I asked to be shown two rooms and got to see the City Vista rooms in both buildings. The room in the main building was definitely run-down, with very old carpeting and worn out furniture. I prayed that the second room would be better and it was! I can only surmise that the people who wrote unhappy reviews got to stay in the City Vista rooms in tne main building. FYI, all City Vista rooms face the opposite buliding and from some, you can get a glimpse of the sea.
Like some reviews mentioned, the concierges are not very helpful and are standoffish, but not rude. One gave me false information once - I had asked how much a taxi cost to go to Old San Juan and he said I did not need a taxi and could just walk the distance as it was right around the corner and about a 5-10 minute walk. It was lucky I asked the bellman for specific directions, because it turned out that it was a 5-10 minute RIDE in the taxi!
The Condado beach is a public one and can be accessed by walking through the hotel, past the pools, or by the road. There is a person there to help you with the chairs. If you are a guest of the hotel, you do not need to pay the $4.00 to rent chairs. There are locals, at the beach, but for me, that was a great part of the charm. Puerto Ricans like to vacation with their families and it was wonderful to hear a new language, even if I did not understand it!.
The beach is small and you cannot walk anywhere as there are rocks that form a barrier. On the bright side this is exactly what makes it safe for children to swim in those waters and there are fish that fish that my daughter chased around. Because of the rocks, the sand is not fine and you can get a scratch or two if not careful. It didn't bother me and we all went barefoot.
The pools were on the smaller side and it was difficult to get chairs around the pool if you got there late. But the water-slide was great fun and the size of the pool was not an issue for me. The baby-pool is more like a fountain, but I was happy to have my little one wading in it, while watching my elder one at the water-slide.
Old San Juan is to the right of the hotel. To the left of the hotel a nice walk, with some interesting shops, restaurants and convenient stores. A mile or so down to the left, is a nice, lively area with lots of people and restaurants. That is where the Radisson and the Marriott are located.
Eating out is very expensive. We tried to find cheaper places to eat in, but the price in most places are fairly comparable. Since there is no sales tax on the island (good thing if you want to buy something from the Cartier, Dior close by), I suspect, restaurants make up for it. We were thankful to have Subway round the corner from the hotel and stocked up on snacks, orange juice and milk.
Maid service was regular and a couple of requests we had were met promptly. When we interrupted the service however (we came for a quick change, when the maid was cleaning the room) it never got finished.
Check-in and check-out were fast and efficient.
Sure the Ritz is better, but I would have spent $350 a night there, as opposed to $150 a night at the Condado plaza.
I would definitely stay at the Condado Plaza again, if we were to come back to the San-Juan area of P.R. It's proximity to Old San Juan (a $12 taxi-ride each way), but removed from the hustle bustle of the same, is very attractive. We went there every evening to eat and even tried this place called La Bombonera (unadvertised by tourist guides) which is a great little place with inexpensive and ethnic food; it also had some great pastries.
There is a bus-stop to the left of the hotel, a minute's walk, where you can take a bus to the old city for a mere 75 cents and save yourself a nice bundle if you had the time. I took it twice and the bus drops you off at the pier in Old San Juan. Puerto Rico is a lovely place and we will definitely be back to the island again. It is thanks to my fellow tripadvisors that I got information that was useful and if anyone has any question, please feel free to write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
- 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
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Orbitz, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Cheap Tickets, Priceline, Hotwire, HotelsforEveryone, Cancelon, HotelQuickly, getaroom.com and TripOnline SA so you can book your The Condado Plaza Hilton reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza Hotel San Juan
- San Juan Conrad
- Condado Plaza Hotel San Juan
- Hotel Resort Wyndham