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Las Casitas Village, A Waldorf Astoria Resort
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Reviewed July 12, 2009

My husband and I spent our honeymoon at Las Casitas. We chose the resort because of the beautiful location and the advertised service. Only one fulfilled our expectation. We were supposed to have a butler, but were never assigned one. We could have stayed at the main hotel and paid substantially less. We had to wait on average 45 minutes for our few requests, which should have been taken care of by a butler. We discussed our complaints with two managers and both offered little assistance. One said that he was sorry that they are not as fast as we are accustomed to and the other said that sometimes things start out wrong and just don't get better. He did offer a certificate to return to the hotel for one free night if we stayed for several nights, but we assured him that we would not be coming back.
You can't go wrong with the beautiful scenery in Fajardo, but you can definitely go wrong staying at this hotel.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank angel0909
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ResortManagementTeam, General Manager at Las Casitas Village, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, responded to this reviewResponded September 3, 2013

Dear angel0909,

It has been several years since your review and while it was not answered back then, it is hopefully never too late to do the right thing. It pains us that the experience you had of our resort was not conform to your expectations. There have been many new and exciting enhancements to both Las Casitas Village and El Conquistador since then. It would bean honor for us to welcome you back.

Please do contact us at LasCasitasConcierge@LuxuryResorts.com so we may assist with your return

Warm Regards,

M. Bonnamain
Director of Operations
Las Casitas Village, a Waldorf Astoria Resort

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2009

I went with husband and teenage son and felt I had really done my homework for this much needed vacation, BUT: I looked at the pretty pictures of this "resort" and ignored all the honest reviews here at Trip Advisor and other places. We had a car and drove in from San Juan -- I thought it an easy, although rather slow drive. When we arrived, there is no clear place to go for check-in -- also, there was no place to park. So we sort of asked around and found out how to check in at the Casitas "Manor House." Very unprofessional and lackadaisical staff there. A good deal of the information they provided was untrue or incorrect. Upon entering our room (at 5 pm), we discovered that it was only partially cleaned. Previous guests' food sitting on the kitchen counters; beds not made up, sand all through the living room. We decided to go to dinner and give them a chance to clean it. We stayed at one of the expensive 2 bedroom Casitas, with a beautiful ocean view -- but as son said "There was not a remotely comfortable piece of furniture in the whole place." Plastic (very small) sofa to stick to; one rattan chair that poked you; beds that were hard and uninviting. Even though we were only party of 3, we could not sit together in the living room due to the sparse furnishings. Balcony had furniture that was torture to sit on. Nothing 5 star in the design, decor, or furnishings here. Old fat tube TV's that were placed so far across the room with no furniture near, you could barely see them to enjoy a movie or TV show -- lousy picture too.

There was no internet service available anywhere. They kept telling us that they were repairing the in-room wireless, but that never happened. Our aircard did not work in the room, and in the business center the internet did not work either. Other reviewers here noted the same -- seems they don't really have any kind of service that works much. My husband is total techie, and he couldn't make anything happen either.

We found nearly everything inconvenient. To get to Palomino Island beach, it was like a 45 minute to one hour ordeal. We had to wait for a golf cart to take us to the main hotel. They told us "Whenever you need a ride, just give us a call and we will get a golf cart right away!" Yea, right! Generally, a 15 minute wait in the sweltering heat and if we called and someone else was more aggressive, they just took your place on the golf cart and you wait for the next. (I will say that all the golf cart drivers were friendly -- we always tipped at least $3 for the short ride. I did not see anyone else tipping them.) After they drop you at the main hotel, you have to slog past the huge long line of tourists constantly waiting to check in. I never saw such long lines in a 5 star hotel. The lobby is a low-ceilinged, dark, depressing place. You have to wend your way past all the shops, then wait in line for an elevator to take you down the cliff. Then, you have to walk a long way past all their other shops. Then wait in line for the funicular to take you the rest of the way down the cliff. You get off the funicular, then get to wait in another line until they decide to let you on the boat that takes you to the island beach. Whew . . . carrying all our stuff in 100 degree heat and waiting in all those lines -- no fun. We only did it once.

Their "fitness center" is in the lower shops area. What a joke! It looked like a couple treadmills sitting in someone's garage. Unbelievable -- 5 star??? Seriously, a couple windowless rooms with no towels or amenities -- not even any kind of decent equipment. I checked it out, but obviously did not bother to stop in for my workout.

The beach was underwhelming. Tons of icky weeds washed up on the shore and in the water. I was grateful for my water shoes. The rest was a rocky dead coral reef. We wanted to get jet skis, have banana boat rides, etc. but even though the island is open daily until 5:30 pm, they took all the jet skis and stuff away by 2 pm, so no chance to do any water activities. It was a big bore.

Housekeeping was an on-going ordeal. The first day our bulter "Carlos" left us a voicemail "Hello, just call if you need anything." We never saw or heard from him again. Calling did nothing. We gave our maids $20 - $25 tips daily in hopes of getting something we requested or needed -- all in vain. Requests for hand towels, wash clothes, bath mats were routinely ignored by the maids, conceirge, Manor House staff, etc. Yes, we did our own dishes, and straightened our own rooms. I noted that they recycled the shampoo and lotion bottles -- they had little paper closures on them and they were always broken, so someone used them before me. Ick. 5 star -- Waldorf Astoria should pull their name from this place

Both my husband and I went to the Golden Door spa. I have been to other Golden Door properties and surprise -- this one was least impressive! The girl at reception ignored me for over 15 minutes as I patiently waited to book five hundred dollars of treatments. She was taking phone calls instead -- one of my pet peeves to handle the phones and ignore folks standing in front of you. The fitness center in the spa was small, but nice -- had everything you need for a good workout in a nice atmosphere. I had a massage/body scrub, which was okay, but the masseuse sniffed really loud the entire way through. I wanted to sit up and yell "Take a break and blow your nose!" Not very relaxing.

Husband and son went to the driving range one day -- no particular complaints. Husband said they had great drivers for use. (I am not a golfer, so I forgot what kind he said they were.)

Pools at the property were nice, especially the infinity pool, but no towels. Again, they seem to have service problems everywhere. No one was picking up the used towels, or replenishing the supply of fresh towels. So instead of feeling relaxed, we just were constantly feeling irritated.

Food was very expensive and very mundane at most of the restaurants and bars. However, we had a good meal at the Steak House and good service. I think it cost around $400 for 3 of us -- no drinks, one moderately price bottle of wine. We had a dinner at the StingRay Cafe which was not great. Not really bad -- but overpriced for what we got. The resort does have a great Key Lime pie, so if you can live off that, you are all set.

We had booked 4 days, and I was happy to leave. Naturally, departure was not smooth -- called for bellman, waited; went to Concierge -- she called, we waited, nothing, nothing, nothing. Finally, we carried all our stuff out and left -- good riddance!!

Pros: Beautiful views from oceanfront casita, infinity pool, golf course. Was nice to have a kitchen so we could make our own breakfast and avoid the $100+ we paid for the one breakfast we did buy at the resort.

Cons: The service was shameful! We are big tippers usually and are happy to compliment and reward good service. There isn't enough space in Trip Advisor to document how lousy their service and attitudes are.

In Sum: The views are not worth the money and frustration of being a "guest" here. This is an expensive place to stay, but not much value for the money. This is the first time I have written a negative review -- beware unless you are the most patient and longsuffering type of person.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank sjw11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ResortManagementTeam, General Manager at Las Casitas Village, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, responded to this reviewResponded September 5, 2013

Dear sjw11,

It has been many years since your review. While your review was not answered back then, it is hopefully never too late to do the right thing. It pains us that the experience you had of our resort was not conform to your expectations. There have been many new and exciting enhancements to both Las Casitas Village and El Conquistador since then. It would bean honor for us to welcome you back.

Please do contact us at LasCasitasConcierge@LuxuryResorts.com so we may assist with your return

Warm Regards,

M. Bonnamain
Director of Operations
Las Casitas Village, a Waldorf Astoria Resort

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2009

In March I booked 8 nights at the El Conquistador Resort for June/ July with a very specific Two room request as I had stayed there before and I was traveling with my wife, two kids and 76 year old Mother. After a one hour check in, we were told that our room choices were available, but at different ends of the Resort. You would think the prospect of spending more than $5000.00 for the week might aid in your room choices. As a result we were booked in two rooms (not updated interiors or furniture) at the Las Casitas Village. Both rooms were on the upper floor, but in different buildings. Both rooms while dated, were comfortable and very quiet and ours included a deck with a great ocean and mountain view. The other room had a porch with not enough room to even stand. The staff at Las Casitas was great, Israel, and Alexanader to name a couple as well as the breakfast place just down the grounds from our rooms. Carlos at the restaruant near the Main Pool took great care of us. The grounds, golf course, Coqui Water Park and Palamino Island were all very relaxing and perfect spots for leisure or soaking up the sun. Be prepared to spend a few bucks for food and drink. The resort also levies a 20% Service Fee (tip) at some locations and not others. In my view they could use another casual restaurant within the resort with local food choices. All in all I was very happy with the resort and the vacation. The room issue even with the upgrade still bothers me.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Hemicuda426
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maria V, Manager at Las Casitas Village, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, responded to this reviewResponded November 14, 2017

Thank you for sharing with us your feedback!

Cordially,

Maria Vega

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2009

When looking for a resort I know I wanted something that would be beautiful had the amenities I was looking for example beach, restaurants, fitness center, many pools, casino and club for nightlife plus entertaining things for our teenagers ages 14 and 17. This property had it all. The resort is 60 minutes from the airport to Fajardo. The Las Casitas sits atop a 350 foot bluff and most of the property overlooks the eastern shores of Puerto Rico. Check-in was quick and easy, thanks to Lillian. We had an 1 bedroom suite with a full kitchen oceanfront on the North side of Las Casitas. the view was beautiful from the balcony. Every morning we had breakfast on the balcony. The couch pulled out to a bed where the girls slept. Nice to have separate sleeping space away from the teenagers. Kitchen worked great you save tons of money. We did eat out at the Strip House restaurant one night and Pizza after the waterpark at the Cafe. The food was great at the Strip House we had Steak, Lobster and Scallop dishes. The pizza was great also but you will be paying the price. The property has many 24 hour pools throughout the property, including a water park that closes at 6pm. The pools are extremely clean, and the water is a perfect temperature. The good thing is when the pool between both resorts get crowed you can go to the infinity pool that is very quiet and beautiful. No one from the El Conquistador can come to the Las Casitas side. The waterpark charges $20 entry fee is prohibitive, especially if you've already paid thousands to stay at the resort and only folks staying at the resort can come. The water park has two flumes, and a tall slide, plus a large pool. we all enjoyed until the kids wanted food. Hot dog $9.00 soda $3.50 they they add the tax on it. They only take the check in card that charges everything to your room. You need this card for everything including getting on the ferry to the private island Palomino. The island was beautiful. Had a great time relaxing while the teenagers went jet skiing $75 for 1/2 hr. You must bring water shoes though; the coral and rocks are sharp and will cut your feet. The resort has an Enterprise car rental on-property. I recommend going on-line and reserving the car on the web $29.00 a day, versus walking up to the counter. You can save yourself a lot of money. Fitness center is $25.00 per person a day or you can walk over to the El Conquistador and use theirs for free. the resorts are together but separate at the same time. Just know that a week's worth of amenities, excellent dining, and excursions will probably accumulate an extra $1k of charges on your room beyond the room rate. Be prepared to do a lot of walking. I wanted to thank Ana for setting up everything before arrival for my teenagers birthday. If you have any questions about anything feel free to ask me.

Crystal from Washington, DC

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Thank pepsocola
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maria V, Manager at Las Casitas Village, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, responded to this reviewResponded November 14, 2017

Thank you for sharing with us your feedback!

Cordially,

Maria Vega

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 25, 2009

My family of four enjoyed a weeklong stay in a 2 bedroom oceanview casita. Million dollar view. We enjoyed going to Palomino Island every day and snorkeling--large variety of fish--even sharks, and octopus. There is a pretty patch of staghorn coral and some large sea fans out there as well. Our casita was located by the pool farthest from the main hotel, and during the week we had the pool mostly to ourselves. Staff was friendly and attentive. The waterpark offered reduced admission after 2pm--so we often went there in the afternoon. We rented a car and it was an uneventful drive--lots of huge potholes though--I'd reccommend the damage waiver--and once in Fajardo, the way to the hotel was well marked with signs. We enjoyed going to El Yunque and had the "big tree trail" to ourselves---a new waterfall around every bend--gorgeous! (go early in the morning and avoid the tour crowds)

Ate at the Caribe cafe once--mediocre. The restaurant at the island was good and we enjoyed lunch there twice--expect to spend about $100 for four, including tip. The wood-fire pizza place by the main pool area was good. Had takeout from the Chinese restaurant and it was fine.

Ate twice at El Estacion--turn right after leaving the hotel complex--it's about a quarter mile away on the left. Food and service were excellent in a casual outdoor atmosphere. The shrimp and mahi-mahi mofongo and various pinchos were delicious.

Grounds were immaculate as well as the pools. Kids wished for a larger gameroom, but really enjoyed the waterpark. Had no problems with the golf cart shuttle--and you can always enjoy a lovely walk to the main hotel through the hotel grounds. At the end of the week we did a tally where using rounding, we added up all our charges and the final bill was within 5 dollars---so we had no issues with overcharging.

All around it was a fun filled week for everyone. Lovely, large, clean rooms in the casita, fun snorkeling, great slides at the waterpark, proximity to El Yunque and Old San Juan made it a great trip.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank kaism0m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maria V, Manager at Las Casitas Village, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, responded to this reviewResponded November 14, 2017

Thank you for your Five "5" Star Review.

Sincerely,

Maria Vega

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