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The Condado Plaza Hilton
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4,055 - 4,060 of 4,942 reviews
Reviewed January 26, 2010

Here's my take on Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza.
I went with my family/in laws on a caribbean cruise and decided to stay a couple of nights in San Juan. I booked the reservation on Hilton.com for 3 rooms using the advanced purchase option. I reserved 3 ocean vista rooms for about $224.00 per night, which i thought was very inexpensive. They charged my credit card for only one of the rooms (STRIKE 1) which I caught when I was checking my balance online. I contacted the hotel before I arrived and they charged me for the other two rooms. Got off the cruise ship at 9:00 am January 24 and headed to the hotel. When I checked in only one room was ready (believe me I was grateful, I know standard check in time is 3:00 or 4:00 pm) but all the rooms were in my name. I asked the front desk person if he would like the names of my guests and he just looked at me like, huh? (STRIKE 2) So whatever, we all put our luggage in the one room and went to the pool. Since mine was the only name on the rooms it was awkward getting towels because they ask for your name and room number, and charging drinks/food to room for the same reason. Again whatever, most of the family stayed at the pool, my spouse and I went to the casino. I liked the casino. Checked with the front desk around 3:00 pm and other two rooms were still not ready. Now I have dropped a significant amont of money at the casino and really want to chill in room for a while. I checked again at 4:30 and the guy at the front desk called housekeeping to see if rooms were ready, 20 minutes later he said they were ready. I got the group together and we went to the rooms. Immediately as I walk in I see a dirty towel on the floor. As I look around there is trash everywhere, dirty cups, beer bottles, bed not made, so i call the front desk, no answer. (STRIKE 3) I head back to the front desk, talk to the same guy, he sort of apologizes, and says there are no other available rooms and we would have to wait for housekeeping to clean the room. We headed back up to the room and waited another 20 minutes for housekeeping. So all in all it was about 6:00 pm when the room was ready.

So after all that - I actaully liked the room a lot. I liked the contemporary look of the room. I thought the room was pretty spacious. The bathroom was nice. Bed was comfortable. And best of all, the view. The ocean view is AMAZING. It was so relaxing sitting on the large balcony watching the waves crash against the rocks.

The pool area is very nice. Two pools - one freshwater, one saltwater. Lots of trees and foliage. Plenty of chairs located by the pools, on the grass, in various areas on the rocks. The beach area is small but nice.

The facilities at the hotel are nice. The lobby bar is cool and fun. Japanese restaurant was good as well as room service. Casino was good.

I have stayed at the following hotels an San Juan: Ritz Carlton, El San Juan, La Concha, and Marriott. I would put this hotel in the same category...for a lot less money.

Here is my summary: The front desk guy really upset me a lot, however, I really liked the hotel. $200 a night is cheap for this kind of hotel. That view from the room was the amazing.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank CTPJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 26, 2010

We traveled to and stayed in this hotel for a wedding. Though the ballroom at the hotel was beautiful, the rest of it left something to be desired. The room was not at all what we expected, mainly because it was much smaller than it was made to seem on the hotel's website. We had three adults and one baby staying in one of the family suites, and we were on top of each other. For a suite, and the price we paid for it, we certainly expected a lot more room. In addition, there wasn't nearly enough room to hang clothes in the closet, and we had to put the crib we requested for the baby in between the two twin beds in one of the rooms.

The housekeepers never provided enough complete sets of towels for all of us, despite us asking for them, and the room wasn't as clean as it should have been. The pool area was nice, though the staff threatened to charge $20 per towel if they weren't returned by 7pm, yet the pools and hot tub were open 24 hours. I have never heard of such a thing at any other hotel.

If traveling to this area of San Juan, think carefully before spending a lot of money at this hotel.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
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Thank jandkmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 26, 2010

I was a little worried about our stay due to the mixed reviews, but we personally found this to be a very nice hotel. We were upgraded for free to an Ocean View room and so glad we were. If you can afford the extra money for this type of accommodation, I highly recommend it. It is SO worth it. I'm not sure the city view rooms would be as appealing. We would prop open our door each night and listen to the crashing waves below... it was SO relaxing, and what a view to wake up to!

We were celebrating a 30th birthday, so upon our arrival they had a bottle of champaign and chocolate cake waiting for us. This was all compliments of Jose Padin, the Director of Operations. Thank you so much Jose! It was a great start to the vacation.

HOTEL: The grounds around the hotel are very nice, and the hotel itself is very "swanky". The rooms were very clean and comfortable. They are not huge, but plenty enough space. The balcony was a great size as well with 2 chairs and a little side table.

The pool areas are also very nice and was never crowded. There was only one day (a Saturday) that is was busy, but that's it. The beach is small, yes, however that did not bother us at all. How much space do you need really? It was never crowded, and the water was very nice to swim in. Yes, it is a public beach and yes it is right next to the road/bridge but you hardly notice it all. We snorkeled one afternoon is the lagoon, however if you enjoy doing this bring your own snorkel and fins. The ones we rented at the hotel for $13 an hour were horrible! Water kept leaking in my snorkel making it very difficult to really enjoy it. Also, if you want to enjoy some drinks at the pool go buy your own liquor from the liquor store down the street. The drinks are WAY too expensive and they come in a little plastic cup. I think on average they were $10-12 per drink. You have a little mini-fridge in the room, so we bought some wine/beer to enjoy while sitting on our balcony most evenings before heading out for dinner.

BREAKFAST: we skipped the expensive hotel restaurants and walked 1 block down to Don Jose where you get a decent breakfast for $7.25 including your juice and coffee... and an amazing view. It is outdoor dining. We ate there every morning.

LUNCH / DINNER: there are a couple of restaurants to choose from if you head left down the street out of the hotel. Just walk a block or two down. If you walk down even FARTHER there is another group of nice restaurants to choose from, but they are several blocks down closer to the Marriot. And of course you can go into Old San Juan and find several more places to dine. We HIGHLY RECOMMEND Dragon Fly in OSJ. AMAZING food. Slightly pricey but VERY worth it. We really enjoyed our dinner here very much.

GETTING AROUND: the taxi's are a rip-off but if you want to head into OSJ you don't have much of a choice. It's either that or take the bus. We did take the 75 cent bus once, and it broke down on our way. The taxi is supposed to cost $12 each way, but the drivers love to tell you it's $14 or $15. The zones are clearly published on the door and it's $12. Call them out on it and they will drop the price - MAYBE. It's a 5 minute ride into OSJ, so $12 just seems very expensive to begin with when you're going back and forth.

OTHER:

We visited Del Morro which was pretty cool, but be prepared for a lot of walking. We were going to visit the Bacardi Rum factory but decided we didn't want to spend 2 hours inside on a tour. Don Q seems to be the choice of rum down there anyway, so we stopped in the Don Q Rum "Museum" which is located across the street from Pier 2 in OSJ. Not really that interesting, but you get a free sample drink. We bought some bottles of rum here; HOWEVER, don't buy it there. We found out that it is cheaper (by at least $3 per bottle) at the airport in the Duty Free shop and the bottles are larger! We bought more there before our flight home. Plus they give you a free tote bag if you buy 2 or more bottles. It was perfect for traveling home.

WHAT TO WEAR: I found that you can pretty much get away with anything as long as you look presentable. Before we left I posted a "what to wear" question in the forum. I packed a lot of things because I felt like if we didn't dress up every night we would feel out of place. So not the case. You will see people dressed more casually, and you will see people dressed up very nice. I guess if you plan to go to any of the trendy night clubs then you would need to dress up, however, for just dinner at MOST places as long as you look decent it's not a big deal. You just don't want to wear a T-shirt and dingy looking shorts. But I saw men dressed in khaki shorts and nice shoes or sandals with polo shirts and women in casual sun dresses, capri pants, etc... I could have easily left half of what I packed at home. As long as you have a few "nicer" choices you will be fine.... we didn't want to eat at a fancy place each night anyway. But even at Dragon Fly - which is a very nice restaurant, I saw people dressed "casually nice".

Overall we had a great time. Feel free to contact me with any questions.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank KitKatChicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 25, 2010

Probably deserves a rating of 3.5. The hotel rooms were modern and clean but not very spacious. We had an ocean-view room which gave us a great view of the Atlantic. The pool-area is open 24 hours with 2 pools. The beach area is very small, there's no spa in the hotel, and the restaurants are somewhat pricey. Not your best bet if you are interested in tourist attractions and San Juan nightlife (hotels in Isla Verde are probably better) but there are several good restaurants within walking distance of the hotel. We got our fifth night free by booking through Hotels.com and definitely recommend if you can get a similar package deal.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank oak331
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 24, 2010

Despite reading mixed reviews I was very happy when I was assigned this hotel by Hotwire. I was looking forward to the location, casino and restaurants.

I took advantage of the offer extended by Mr. Jose Padin, Director of Operations to tripadvisor readers to contact him with any requests. He accommodated our preference for number of beds and made sure the rooms were ready upon our arrival. He also extended a late check-out on our final day.

I liked the location. The area is not congested and we were close to Old San Juan, Isla Verde and the airport.

The hotel staff was pleasant and responsive to our requests. The Condado Plaza has one of the largest casinos in San Juan and we rarely had to wait to play blackjack, even at the $5 tables. After going down the street to Hacienda Don Jose for breakfast the first morning we ate the remainder of our breakfasts in the hotel at the Cafe Caribe. For only a few dollars more you get a greater variety of choices, better service and a much nicer ambience. We often came back to the cafe in the late evening for coffee and dessert as they had a large selection of cakes and pies from which to choose. In fact, one evening they reopened for us as we arrived after closing time.

The pool area is spacious with an outdoor bar and restaurant; however, the beach is very small.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank steveref
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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