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“Lovely place to stay”

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La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort
Ranked #7 of 48 Hotels in San Juan
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 21, 2013

We stayed here for a week in April 2013 for our honeymoon. When we checked in and mentioned our honeymoon, they immediately gave us two complimentary flutes of champagne. We thought that was a nice touch, however, it was really difficult to carry the champagne and get our suitcases up to our room. It probably would've made more sense to send the champagne up to our room.

Overall, we enjoyed our stay and would recommend it to others. Here are some minor areas where the hotel could improve:

We got a suite overlooking the ocean, right above the adult-only swimming pool area. It came with a private balcony and a hot tub. We used it almost every day. There were detailed instructions on how to fill it up, but no instructions on how to drain it. We had to call in an engineer which took two calls and over an hour. The balcony also had a patio table, two chairs and a lounge chair.

Housekeeping was really inconsistent. Some days we would get complimentary bottles of water; sometimes we didn't (BTW, you can ask for free bottles of water at the front lobby. When the housekeepers didn't leave any, we would go down and ask for 3-4 bottles at a time. Do not waste your money buying bottled water at the bar, gift shop, or at Walgreens). Sometimes, we would get 3 towels, sometimes 4. Sometimes, they would clean the hot tub; something they didn't. Overall, they did a solid job. It was unclear whether we got new sheets or they just re-made the bed all week.

During the week, our air conditioner broke. Neither of the two Engineers who came to our room spoke much English. It was really frustrating. A hotel that caters to tourists should hire employees who speak English and can communicate with guests. They never fixed the A/C. Since it was near the end of our trip, we just endured the hot room instead of calling in a third engineer.

The hotel lobby and pool area are beautifully decorated. There are two pools -- one for everyone and one for only adults. We didn't go to either one since we preferred to be in our private hot tub, but they both seemed very nice and were pretty crowded whenever we walked by. The adult swimming pool area isn't always available since it can be reserved. We watched a wedding ceremony and reception there. It was also shut down another evening for a private business event.

We were on the third floor and on the night of the wedding, our room was literally vibrating and shaking because of the bass from the DJ. If you're in the suites tower, definitely request a room on a higher floor, especially if you're planning to spend a Saturday night.

We ate at the hotel restaurants twice. Once for dinner and once for lunch - both times at Solera. Try to avoid going during the lunch rush. Service is painfully slow. There were a ton of servers that all seemed overwhelmed. Just watching them made me stressed out. When we went, the only table we could find was right next to the kitchen. We sat there and watched all this food come out and sit there waiting for someone to run them to the tables. My husband ordered sliders and we were commenting on an order of sliders that had been under the heat lamps since before we arrived. More than half an hour later, we saw a server finally pluck it off the line and bring it to us! We pointed out that he had substituted cheddar so that wasn't the correct order, but even if it was the correct cheese, we would've sent it back since it had obviously been made well before he ordered it. It makes me wonder how often they serve food that's just been sitting there for a long time.

Fortunately, La Concha is located within walking distance to many local restaurants. We recommend Pelayo and Pinky's for breakfast (avoid Orozco's); Di Parma for lunch; and Jam Rum and Casa Lola for dinner. If you're going to Old San Juan, the best fine dining restaurant is Marmalade. I'll review these restaurants on TripAdvisor separately.

Another place to avoid for breakfast is the hotel lobby coffee/pastry bar. We went there twice and both times, the employees seemed frazzled and overwhelmed. The line was moving so slowly even though there weren't that many people that we finally gave up and left. I honestly cannot comprehend what the issue is and why the employees seemed so confused. The pastries and coffee are overpriced anyway. You can get a much better and cheaper cup of cafe con leche just about anywhere.

The concierge service at La Concha is pretty good. There's almost always someone at the desk who can make dinner reservations for you or sign you up on tours. We did the El Yunque rainforest hike, which they booked for us. We also had them make a couple dinner reservations for us before we realized we could book it on OpenTable on our phones.

Again, this is a solid place, especially because of its location. If I came back, I'd probably try the Ritz Carlton.

Room Tip: Pick a higher floor room overlooking the ocean. Get a suite with a private hot tub - totally worth i...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Wen T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,955 - 4,961 of 7,705 reviews

Reviewed April 21, 2013

Totally amazing place. Absolutely beautiful. Our room was a city view room which didn't bother us but the bar across the street that had about 300 people partying outside until 4:00 a.m., did bother us. The area is very vibrant and close to absolutely everything and anything you would want...all within walking distance. I don't know if it is always windy but it was like gale force winds with 3 to 4' waves..definitely not swimmable. The pools, however, are out of this world. We were only there for one short day/night so I don't have a lot to offer. Skip the casino...spend the money on a great souvenier or a good dinner. Staff was so helpful, I would rate them a 5 out of 5. Considering the beauty of this place and the chic feel, I was a little weirded out by the odd artwork. Simple photos of cranes standing in the water and in the room, I could not figure out what the photos were. Oh yeah...our room also smelled musty and the carpet did not feel very clean. I informed the clerk when I left but he just said "oh really?" Maybe I should have complained to begin with. Oh well! We were highly impressed with the kitchen in the room which had a fridge, stovetop, microwave, dishes, silverware, etc. That was an awesome touch.

1  Thank Cinderbug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 21, 2013

Wonderful experience. Three days and nights while waiting for a cruise. Excellent location and service. Friendly helpful staff - good area of San Juan. Beautiful beach and pool areas. Close to good restaurants (good recommends by staff) - try Ummo!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Lindan44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 20, 2013

We just returned from a five day stay at La Concha and we had a REALLY good time! La Concha has a neat location with the entrance facing a fairly upscale street for easy access to restaurants, shops, etc. The rear of the hotel is literally on the beach, and this beach is wonderful. There is plenty of wave action for those who like to go into the water, the breezes are constant, and the sand is easy to navigate. The presence of friendly security at all times is reassuring, though the beach seems very private, with only resorts and their guests on either side of the hotel. A short cab ride took us into San Juan and all the major tour buses pick up from La Concha. The pools, outdoor café and restaurants are all beautiful and the food is very good, particularly Voga which isn't as pricey as the unique Perla, but relaxing and lovely in its own right. Go in the morning for a luxurious breakfast and sit out on the balcony overlooking the pool area and city buildings beyond. You'll feel you are at an escape, but not far from the beat of the city. The décor throughout the lobby and the hotel is sleek and upbeat. We had an oceanfront room with an outstanding view of the beach and ocean. It was very spacious and comfortable, but if you can swing it, take a room in the newer all-suites building. These rooms are special. Above all, the staff at this hotel cannot be topped. Everyone from the front desk, concierge, wait staff, cleaning services, etc. wore a smile and had a genuinely accommodating spirit. The only little annoyance happened with our keys that periodically did not work and we had to go down to the desk to exchange them 3 times. Again, this is a very good all-around hotel - not the newest, not the most exquisite, but an excellent choice and we are glad we made it!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Angel54046
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2013

Had a great experience at this hotel! Stayed in the Ocean Tower in a King Oceanfront room. Room was very cleaned and maintained throughout our stay. The balcony isn't so much a balcony, as in there aren't chairs and such to sit out on. However, it has a sliding door with a step out balcony to stand on, which really works out fine. Just nice to be able to open the door up and listen to the ocean! Tried the breakfast buffet in Voga (~ 25/person) and while good, not really worth that. Dunkin Donuts right down the street can be had for ~ $7 total! Also had dinner within Voga, and it is very pricey, but not a lot more than normal prices for this area.

Overall a very nice hotel, with a very hip environment in the lobby. Loud music is played at night, so if you have any issues with that, then probably should look elsewhere. A fantastic experience, and we hope to be back very soon!

Room Tip: Make sure to get a high room to get away from lobby noise. Most rooms within Ocean Tower have a step...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Jonathan S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2013

I stayed for 6 days in March with family. It has its pros and cons, as most places do. However, for the amount I paid each night (including resort fee) I definitely expected more.

Pros are - beautiful central location, minutes from airport and Old San Juan; wonderful staff in all areas of the hotel; beautiful lobby and even more beautiful pool areas; nice beach. Definitely get an ocean view room and you'll wake up each morning to the beautiful crashing waves right at your window. Even though its on a crowded street once you enter the lobby you are in another world. Nice casino. Ocean view rooms were very quiet - I did not hear any street noise or noise from adjoining rooms.

Cons - 1) the bathroom. Not only was the shower stall extremely moldy (literally - black mold everywhere), but instead of a shower curtain or sliding door to seal the shower area, the step-in shower only had a fixed glass wall that covered half the length of the shower area. So half the shower stall had nothing to prevent water from seeping out all over the bathroom floor. Making matters worse is that there is a large rainhead showerhead in the middle of the shower (not at the end of the shower) so water was more apt to collect and spill out. The first night we used the shower it flooded out of the shower onto the bathroom floor and seeped outside the bathroom door into the corridor, soaking the carpet - someone came up with a plunger and determined the drain was "clogged." However, we continued to flood every day, using most of our towels to sop up the water on the floor. Between the mold and the daily flooding, it really took away from our hotel experience.

2) General dinginess of room - dirty and worn out carpet. Needs updating. Refrigerator door fell off and was hanging by one hinge. However beds were comfortable.

3) Housekeeping - very unreliable. Most days did not come until around 5 PM, just when we were arriving back at our room to shower for the evening and for dinner. One day they didnt' come at all.

4) Wifi - was terrible. Even though I called several times about the Wifi and was told by their "tech support" person that they needed to fix a router, this never happened in my entire 6-day stay.

5) Elevator - 1 of 3 elevators was broken for almost our entire stay.

6) Extremely expensive food - I know its a hotel but the prices were ridiculous, particularly the continental breakfast. Go to Ben and Jerry's next door instead - great prices and great food. (yes they serve breakfast and lunch at this Ben and Jerry's)

7) Beach - I don't know if its supposed to be a private beach for just hotel guests but the 2 days we stayed at the beach area people who clearly were not hotel guests were on the beach, using the hotel beach chairs, umbrellas, and even brought their dogs.

8) Wait staff - we ate many times at the hotel's restaurants. While the wait staff was without exception friendly and charming, at Solera (the poolside restaurant) it always took an inordinate amount of time to actually receive our food and drinks. At one point, we received our DINNERS before our first drinks had arrived, even though the bar area was literally next to me. It seems like the waiters do not fill the orders as they take them, but gather up many many orders and fill them all at once. So a drink or appetizer that should take about 5 or maybe 8 minutes to arrive takes 20 minutes or longer. Or maybe its the kitchen's fault, I don't know. It was annoying and detracted from the experience.

9) for those with kids - the pools are nice but on the smallish side - and there is no "fun" pool with a slide or anything of that nature for those who look for that sort of thing in a hotel pool. I had older kids so they didn't care.

Overall - the property is so pretty that its a shame these drawbacks diminished from the experience. It would be worth the $$$ if they updated the rooms and bathrooms, upgraded Wifi, improved service at Solera, etc. Next time I will try somewhere else.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank NassauMom_418
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jose C, Guest Relations Manager at La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort, responded to this reviewResponded April 21, 2013

Saludos NassauMom_418,

Thank you for your review and expressing the positive and negative. I always say that our guests are the voice that allows us to become better at what we do. We are committed to ensure that each guest has a wonderful experience. I do regret that this was not so during your stay and for this our management team will review your comments and make certain the proper changes are executed to ensure these cons are converted in pros. We have begun these changes with our wifi connections. Individual modems have been placed in each room to widen the room bandwidth for speedy service. The beach itself is public as are all beaches in PR, however our hotel guests are not charged for umbrellas or beach chairs.
NassauMom_418, thank you again for your review. We do hope that you could give us another opportunity to prove to you the true service offered at our hotel. Please contact me if that opportunity should be granted.

At your service,

Jose Cepero
La Concha Resort
jcepero@laconcharesort.com

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 18, 2013

We booked this hotel as an "After honeymoon" getaway before heading back home. Online it looked fabulous and received all great reviews but in reality it is not what is appears. Our suite had a great ocean view but if you turned off the air conditioner and opened the patio door with in a few moments the room smelled of mold. As I walked around the room I looked up and the ceiling was full of mold. The bathroom tiles had mold all along the base all the way around the shower and bath tub area.

If we had been staying more then one night I was have demanded to change rooms but that wasnt the case. One night is all I could stand.

There are 3 small pools, one looks more like a water feature then a pool. The food is over priced and not worth the price. Save your money and walk down the block and experience one of the many good restaurants in the neighborhood.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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5  Thank Stephyne W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort

Address: 1077 Ashford Avenue, San Juan 00907-1128, Puerto Rico (Formerly La Concha Resort: A Renaissance Hotel)
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) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in San Juan
#2 On the Beach Hotel in San Juan
#3 Romantic Hotel in San Juan
#5 Family Hotel in San Juan
#5 Luxury Hotel in San Juan
Price Range: $243 - $589 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 483
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort, a stunning renovation of one of San Juan's most elegantly chic properties. On a sun-drenched corner of Caribbean beachfront in the most prestigious Condado district, our hotel in San Juan, Puerto Rico is an icon of modernist architecture replete with spacious exhilarating decor and detail. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
La Concha Hotel Renaissance
Renaissance San Juan
San Juan Renaissance

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