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“Not worth the money” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of El San Juan Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton

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El San Juan Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton
Ranked #9 of 13 Hotels in Isla Verde
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Not worth the money”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 6, 2011

I will simply say for the money spent on the ocean front lanais room, I was extremely disappointed. It was out of date, one of the lamps did not work, the shower dripped water, their were gnats in our room, the bed was NOT comfortable, the lanais below us was more than an eye sore...dirty, rusty view looking below. For over $500/night, i have received WAY more in a room. Not to mention the fountains on the resort property were not turned on for a portion of our stay (however, i was mindful that hurricane Irene passed thru the week prior) the pools were dirty and not updated in my opinion. I could go on about the disappointment but I am going to exert the rest of my energy on writing an awesome review on the Ritz Carlton, San Juan. We checked out on 9/2/2011 and into the Ritz....and what a beautiful and near perfect experience! I am so glad we did!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank katie h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (842)
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Kansas City, Missouri
Level Contributor
33 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 6, 2011

We go regularly to the El San Juan and it is always pleasing. I am always swept away into a world of elegance upon entering the hotel. Immediately in front of you are two gorgeous and inviting bars. The lobby area is kept spotless and invites you to relax. The staff greet you and are anxious to please. Checking in was a breeze. The room was Spartan and I do believe it is time for the Hilton to update their room decor. However the room is nice in size and very clean. Comfortable beds, small bathrooms and good amenities. We spend our days by the pools and they are gorgeous. The pool service was a bit spotty on this trip. We veered away from the beach because of the "no see'um" bugs. However they do offer bug spray and numerous guests took advantage of the gorgeous beach. The hotel was filled with families and they all seemed to be having a great time. After a hard day of working on our tans, we took advantage of the bar scene. Wow! They have Latin music in the lobby area of an evening and it feels like the entire city turns out for dancing and drinks. Everyone dresses smartly for the evening and by 10:30pm the place is hopping and I do mean hopping. It is exciting and fun! The casino was full. The slot machines are a tad old so if you are used to the latest equipment, you will be disappointed. We took a cab down to Old San Juan one evening for dinner. Cab rides average between $20-25. Always a fun adventure. Old San Juan really gives you the experience of being in Spain or Portugal and is full of excitement. The hotel with it's polish and vibrancy is always inviting and we are making plans for our spring visit.

  • Stayed September 2011
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kacee25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
22 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 5, 2011

The grounds of the resort at the pool and beach are very nice. One of the nicest of the resorts that I have stayed at in the local San Juan area. Location wise...the hotel is close to the airport, and a good distance to Old San Juan. The restraurants within the hotel have excellent dining and are pricey. Some evenings there is a band in the main lobby and bar area. The main lobby is pretty amazing. The casino off the lobby is small, but fine. The rooms were adequate with a nice tropical feel, a little worn but no complaints....its not plush if that is what you are looking for. Enjoyed my stay here....it was for business travel. I could see this as an excellent hotel for honeymoon or couples of all ages. My only negative is that the front desk is extremely slow.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank GA_Modine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2011

We booked our vacation to the El San Juan resort from Jet Blue vactions and got an excellent deal! Price around for the best price before booking!
We stayed at the resort for 6 days....we received a call from jet blue 2 days before our trip advising us that the resort had no electric and had some minor problems due to Hurricane Irene. We were in contact with the El San Juan and the day before we were supossed to leave the electric was back on so we decided to take our trip as planned. I was a little worried about going to the resort right after the storm and also concerned about the negative reviews. I did not find most of the negative reviews to be true ...... and the resort was up and running. From the minute we pulled up to the El San Juan and opened the taxi door we were greeted by the friendly staff. Angelo was one of the first staff members that we met. He was outside and had another member of the staff take us to the front desk. The front desk staff was amazing.. We had a early flight and arrived at the resort at about 10:30 am...they checked us in and we were in our room within 5 minutes. We had the City Vista Room...which looks exactly as it is posted on the web site...the room was white with tropical bright colored decor. I was not crazy about the bathroom...it was small and I thought it should have been nicer for a top rated resort, We did have a problem in the shower when some tiles fell off the wall along with the entire shower bar and shower head that was attached to the wall...my poor son was in the shower when this happened. We reported it to the front desk and it was fixed very quickly..Thank God nothing too serious happened to my son...we were offered another room but decieded to stay. There was also alittle mold in the bathroom....they were having some problems at that time because the hotel was without air for a few days before we arrived..but other than that the room was always kept clean and Isabel our maid was great. she tried to give us all the comforts of home during our stay. The hotel grounds were beautiful and well kept...the pools were great...alot of lounge chairs and sun decks...and if you donot like the they had plenty of shaded areas too. The beach was also nice and clean, although I never found Puerto Rico to have the nicest ocean water. The had a pool bar and other bars outside....a little expensive, but we were not surprised not much different than New York prices. If you wanted lunch when u were at the pool you could also order it..I had a greek salad outside one day and it was great..It was $10.00. This is not an all inclusive resort so there is nothing really going on by the pool or beach...no activities at all. They had a D.J. at the pool on Saturday that played great music....It was very relaxing!
We went to a supermarket called Publeos and bought some water, beers, snacks etc...the liquor was cheap in Publeos. We even bought a cheap foam cooler and I also brought a cooler bag from home to bring to the pool/beach. We did not eat in any of the resturants at the resort...just at the cafe where my son had pizza and a burger for lunch and they also had great gelato. We loved the resturants that were in walking distance...: these are to the left when you walk out of the el san juan: Plato's was our favorite (we ate there twice) , Metropol(next to the cock fights) was great too, Don Jose(we had breakfast..it was ok) and Pia Bella(breakfast,,it was ok) to the right of the resort across from the Intercontinenat Hotel Mi Castia....it was greast for breakfast and dinner..we had Ruth Chris at the Intercontinental it was great too. Chillis across the street. Carols, Martin at Kamil and all of the front desk staff were great including the managers. They always answered any questions and gave us great tips about the area. The towel girls were also nice. The concierge staff was great Carlos, Raphael and the rest of the concierge were always helpful too. The lobby was beautiful and the weekened parties in the lobby were amazing...Jimmys BBQ resturant was closed due to damage from the Hurricane and they had the 3 year anniversary party on a Saturday night in the lobby...omg..what a great party...D.J.'s, bands playing and dancing all night..it was amazing!! The Casino was also great alot of slot machines and game tables. We never heard any noise in our rooms from the lobby or disco.
****The only major problem we had was when we booked a tour to the Rain Forest which should have included 3 stops to local beaches and unlimited beers, soda, water , rum punch , pina coladas and a lunch. When my husband and I were on the elevator in the El San Juan we met a man from HIGHLANDER TOURS. He was getting on the elevator from the 6th floor...he said he was a tour guide looking for his guests that were going on a trip that day. Since he was in the resort we thought that he was part of the tour company at the hotel...he gave us the information and everything sounded great so we booked a tour for the next day. It was $75 per person and let me tell you it was a horrible experience. He told us that we could go on a 15-20 minute short tour of the rain forest since my husband had a problem with his leg and that we still could see the rivers and the pool river . After a long ride he took us to some area that I don't even think was the rain forest..some private area...there was another couple in the van..to find out later that they were staying at another hotel. He told us that if we didnot want to take the long tour we could take the short one and then have coffee and pastries.......My son who is a teenager wanted to go on the long trail..donot ask me why but we made him go...the tour guy then tells us to wait where he dropped us..we thought it was going to be a tourist waiting area and go to find out it is someones house up in the woods....he said it was his Aunt's house...the lady was very nice...she didnot speak much english...but we did not pay to sit in some strangers house with roosters and dogs running all over...she had no electric and no water due to the Hurricane...He had the nerve to leave us with an opened bottle of water that was maybe 1/4 filled. The lady offered us fresh coconut water. We waited there for 2 hours in the heat, praying that our son would return safe...which thank god he did. I begged my husband not to fight with this man because we did not know where we were.Before we got there Alex told me that we were about 53 miles away from the resort. It was some experience..we travel alot and never experienced anything like this before. He took us for lunch and then he wanted to get paid....he stopped on the way to pick up a 6 pack of beer....then he took us to Loquillo beach...omg what a slum it was...I donot even think it was that beach..it was dirty...disgusting...a disgrace! No signs saying the name of the beach...no chairs to rent like we read on line....he had his own folding chairs in the back of the van. When we asked him where are the pina coladas, rum punch etc...he said he never told us that (but he said he had rum in the back of his van if we wanted some..lol..crazy)..my husband finally couldnot control himself and had words with him.....my son was looking forward to swimming in that beach and he was even upset about it. Finally when we left that beach he said that he would take us for pina colada's since we must have misunderstood him...which we didnot misunderstand anything...he said he was insulted that my husband told him that we didnot pay to sit by someones house for 2 hours..he said it was his aunts house and it wasnot..the lady told me he was just a friend (I understand some spanish..which he didnot know..he even thought that we whould give him extra money so he could tip her because we stood with her..can u imagine the nerve of this guy!) Well we went to someplace for pina colada's...big deal and it was near a beach..but not a swimming beach..we were just able to look at the view of the beach and we never went near a 3rd beach. It was just a disaster. We advised the resort and made a complaint....we also felt that this man should not have been able to be on the resort property and that he lied and also put us in danger!
The hotel manager said that some areas of the resort are opened to the public..which we knew but what was this man doing roaming aroud trying to book tours when the hotel has their own tour company and we only booked the trip because he was on the resort property....security was also contacted and it was the talk of the resort...we were just happy that we returned to the resort safe..his driving was also a horror...most of the time he wasnot even looking at the road...and he also had 2 beers and even stopped for gas on the way back...some tour guide. So please be so careful when booking a tour..thank god we were lucky and returned ok...but some other family may not be as lucky .
Well other than our tour experience ...WE ENJOYED OUR STAY AT THE EL SAN JUAN RESORT.... we were even able to get a late check out.....many people from New York also had their flights cancelled due to the Hurricane Irene and were unable to fly back to New York because no flights were available due to the damage in New York ..they said the the resort was very helpful and gave them good rates to stay a few extra days until they were able to return home. My family and I were lucky because our flight was not canceled and we were able to return home as planned. (They also kept us informed on the weather and Hurricane Irene that hit in New York etc)
If you plan a vacation to the El San Juan Resort I am sure you will enjoy it...have fun and most of all relax and enjoy spending time with your family or friends!
Feel free to contact me if you need any other information!

Room Tip: Our room was on the 7th floor. View was not great overlooking the top of a building, if we opened th...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank RORO0565
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Worth, Texas
Level Contributor
28 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 1, 2011

After visiting PR last year, and making ,multiple trips to this hotel to party, I knew this hotel was the place to be for my trip.

I actually found an amazing deal on Expedia and I was able to book a room for very reasonably priced. I saw that a hotel employee (Susan Wilkerson) was responding to reviews on trip advisor,so I sent her an e-mail to check in on my reservation and to find out what additional fees,if any, would accrue during my stay. She was very accommodating and quick to respond.

We arrived just a few days after Hurricane Irene and we were able to get a room upgrade to the main tower. Oblivious to me,my Expedia reservation included a daily resort credit,so my friend and I put that to good use at the swim up bar lol

Our room was pretty nice. We were upgraded from a garden lanais to a vista room. Obviously white furniture doesn't stay white forever,but I wasn't too picky about my room because I was in freaking puerto rico! I did not visit the island to stay cooped up in my room all day! Housekeeping was pretty thorough and my bed was always made and towels always replenished.

I never ate at any of the restaurants on site (plenty of others nearby that are much cheaper) and the drinks at the bars can get a little pricey. Thursday Night-Saturday Night the lobby of this hotel and Brava Nightclub are the hottest place to be! I was very happy to be there in the middle of all the action and only have to stumble a few steps back to my room after a few cuba libres :)

The hotel served its purpose for my vacation. I'm a fun-loving 23 year old girl that was looking for some good drinks,good dancing and good company in PR. El San Juan Hotel delivered.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Dimanchewb88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
fmagriz
Level Contributor
78 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 1, 2011

I would stay there over and over again. People are so friendly in Puerto Rico and especially the staff. The atmosphere is vibrant, it is elegant with such great energy. The lounge has spanish music and it gets so busy on the weekends. The people in Puerto Rico know how to party. I am thinking that is where everyone goes on the weekend. Instead of a club they hang out at this 5 star (actually I think it's diamond) hotels. The pool....OMG gorgeous and the service spectacular. I highly recommend this hotel, it is exquisite but expensive. You get what you pay for and you will have a great experience there. I know I did.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank fmagriz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
nyc
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 1, 2011

I just got back on Wednesday 8/31....The staff was superb...Some people complain about the staff...I can't see how. Everyone bent over backwards to make your stay enjoyable....Make sure you meet Angelo(bellman)...great guy...Carlos(bellman)...great guy also....Carlos and Kamil at the front desk also excellent.....Michael in security...another stand up guy....Enough about the staff...The hotel....for a 5 star hotel and the price you pay for everything at the resort....I felt the rooms should have been nicer...The only thing that did upset me was that when you did complain to the hotel about the mold growing within the room ceiling and the tiles that fell off in the shower that hit my son.... they didn't compensate anything for that....Other than that, it was an overall good time.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank TwistedInNYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El San Juan Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton

Property: El San Juan Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton
Address: 6063 Isla Verde Avenue, Isla Verde, Carolina 00979-5706, Puerto Rico (Formerly El San Juan Resort & Casino, A Hilton Hotel)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Carolina > Isla Verde
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Isla Verde
#4 Casino Hotel in Isla Verde
#4 Luxury Hotel in Isla Verde
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Isla Verde
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — El San Juan Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton 4*
Number of rooms: 386
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Oceanfront hotel surrounded by 15 acres of landscaped grounds in fashionable Isla Verde district - 15 minutes from Old San Juan. El San Juan Hotel presents a perfect blend of tropical splendor, Old World elegance and vibrant culture. Redesigned guest rooms are bright and inviting - ideal for a retreat. Lounge at the beach or on the expansive pool featuring flowering gardens, and spacious sundeck, Olympic-sized pool, Fantasy swimming pool with swim-up bar, waterfall and whirlpools, private cabanas for rental or relax and rejuvenate at the spa. Enjoy a vibrant and varied nightlife, choosing from nine on-site award winning restaurants, plus lounges, bars and nightclubs. One life to live? Live it up at El San Juan! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El San Juan Resort And Casino
El San Juan Hotel Isla Verde
El San Juan Hotel Casino
The Waldorf Astoria Collection Carolina
El San Juan Hotel Puerto Rico
El San Juan Hotel, Curio Collection By Hilton Puerto Rico/Isla Verde

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