Stayed from 3/29 to 4/1
The hotel is in excellent condition (like new). The lobby is spacious and nicely landscaped. The level of cleanliness everywhere in the hotel was remarkable. Service was extremely efficient, very courteous and helpful. Always a smiling face.
The included free breakfast was very good, but I strongly suggest ordering an omelet (very good) rather than taking the eggs from the steam table (well, they _are_ eggs on a steam table). The made-to-order pancakes were also very good. There was also this white gooey stuff that my wife thought was grits and I though was cream of wheat. Most of the local guests were scooping it up like crazy, so I broke down and tried it. It was really excellent, but I still didn't know what it was. I finally asked, and it turned out to be oatmeal, but I certainly didn't recognize it as such. It was very good, but it was loaded with sugar (which, I suppose, is why it was so good). Avoid if dieting. There is also an assortment of cold cereal, freesh fruit and the usual bagels, muffins, toast, etc. Several juices, yogurt, American and Puerto rican coffee, etc. The Puerto Rican coffee in the rooms is better than that served at breakfast.
The included nightly manager's cocktail reception si also excellent. Pretty much anything you want in the way of drinks. Alcohol was not scarce in them! Contrary to other reports, there are no hot hors d'ouerves (at least not during the week), but they are available for a modest price. Corn chips witn salsa and cheese, Chex mix, and pop corn are included. Have drinks served in plastic if you want to drink by the pool, which is also very nicely landscaped.
The room was in excellent condition and smelled fresh. No great views from any side, near as I could tell. Bands play till 9 or 10, or sometimes 11 just outside the casino, so if you go to bed early, ask for a room as far from the casino as possible. The bands ranged from good to excellent. A salsa band played on Thursday night, and we would have gladly paid to hear them.
Computer access- in room data lines, in-room TV internet surfing at $9.95/day, or there are three free internet-connected, printer equipped computers in the lobby. They were usually occupied (by kids) till about 10 PM, but if you really need to use one it isn't a problem.
Location is convenient, and though across from the airport, there was almost no noise. There is a small strip mall a block away with fast food, a local restaurant, a bakery/coffee shop, and small supermarket. Charlie's Car rental (another excellent value) is less than two blocks away, as is the beach.
Security is pretty good- a room card is needed to use the elevators. In general, security seems to be an issue in Puerto Rico. Everywhere we went (not just the cities), there were bars on windows, and walls with barbed/razor wire. Mall parking lots have guard towers (not a bad idea, actually). Another thing to watch out for- parking in Old San Juan is non-existent. After finding the municipal lot filled, I found what I thought was a legal spot near El Morro. It was one of two available spots on the street, no yellow curb, no tickets on other vehices, no signs in sight. You guessed it. Turns out there _was_ a sign, but it was on the wall of a building, not on a sign post, and only at one end of the street. $25 lesson learned. Another warning -fast food isn't. Burger King, 12:30 PM, lunch crowd. One employee taking orders and serving them (at a snail's pace), one employee cooking, one working the drive-thru, and two eating lunch. Took us 45 minutes.
Anyway, back to the hotel- the only negative comments I can make about the hotel is that the shower head did not provide the amount water pressure the I like- but almost no hotel does, so that really doesn't count. The other one is that they did not have hair rinse conditioner for my wife, which is strange, as that always seems to be one of those little botlles in the bathroom. Oh well...
We would definitely stay there again.
Good place to stay
We (a family of five) stayed from March 19 to March 27. The hotel was fine. The airport was close but you can't hear the planes from the rooms. The pool was lovely. There is a nice exercise room and having the laundry was a bonus when traveling with a family. The teenagers loved the breakfast buffet. The rooms have a fridge and microwave so you can buy some lunch items. The only negative was the band that played late on the weekend nights. The music was good but loud. In addition to the supermarket in the little strip mall near the beach, there is a bigger one to the west of the hotel - take the road to the right of the hotel exit. You have to walk as the road is a one way ramp off the freeway.
The location of the hotel is good - easy access to freeways to go to the rainforest and caves.
Having a suite was a real bonus for a family - nice to be able to close the door to the bedroom if some want to sleep earlier or later.
The neighborhood was safe. I felt fine letting my teenagers walk to the beach or the shops during the day.
Great place to stay
I just got back from five days at the Embassy Suites in San Juan. Everything about the hotel is excellent. The rooms were spacious and clean and perfect for four girls. We loved the daily breakfast and happy hour each night. The selection at both was amazing. The drinks they make during the cocktail reception are strong. You can get two at a time and go back as many times as you want. I'm hooked on Pina Coladas. The pool area is fantastic. It's a large, lagoon-style pool with palm trees and flowering bushes. The pool and hot tub were both extremely clean. There are lounge chairs at the pool that come with a canopy for those that want to get some shade.
The location is perfect. It is only a short 10-minute walk to the beach. The beach is wide and you can rent chairs for $3 or umbrellas for $10. The water was crystal clear and the surf was calm.
We took a 15-minute walk to a nearby restaurant, Metropol. The food is a mix of Puerto Rican and Cuban. We really enjoyed the local flavor. There is also a Pueblo supermarket nearby. Be sure to stop there and buy coffee to take home. It was much cheaper than at the airport or other tourist shops.
To get to other areas within San Juan, you can walk towards the beach and pick up the bus. We took several rides to Old San Juan for just a quarter each. Taxis are faster but you can't beat the price of the bus. You can take the A5 bus into Old San Juan and then catch the ferry to Catano to visit the Bacardi Rum Factory. I would recommend it highly. The ferry is only 50 cents each way and the factory is free with two free drinks included. Don't miss El Morro, the 500-year-old fort at the tip of Old San Juan. The views are stunning.
Also, don't miss the rainforest, El Yunque. We rented a car at the Holiday Inn next to the Embassy Suites for $30 per day. We drove to the rainforest, hiked to La Mina falls, and swam underneath it. It was a super hike and the water was refreshing.
Another "must see" is the bioluminescent bay at Fajardo. It's one of the most amazing things you'll ever see. We went on a kayaking tour with Eco Action Tours. I had never kayaked before and it was so much fun. They take you out in 2 and 3-person kayaks through a mangrove swamp and into a lagoon filled with the glowing plankton. The highlight of the trip is getting into the lagoon and swimming. The faster you swim, the brighter the plankton glows. I've never seen anything like it. Be sure you try it, you won't regret it. It costs $40 for a two-hour adventure. Totally worth it.
Since El Yunque and the Biobay at Fajardo are so close to each other, you can rent a car and see both in one day. This was much cheaper than the excursions offered by the hotel and you could customize what you wanted to see and where to stop.
Have a great time in Puerto Rico, there's a lot to do.
Great Place to Stay
I was in Puerto Rico from April 20 to April 24th. I booked this trip last minute so my choices in hotels were a little limited but I'm happy I stayed at Embassy Suites. The major perk of this hotel are the rooms. You can't beat the luxury of a full two room suite. The second room comes with a work/dining table, sofa and another tv with NYC channels and a kitchen area with microwave, sink and refridgerator. This hotel also has a free breakfast buffet with made to order pancakes and eggs. There is also a happy hr with live music from 5:30 - 7:30. very nice! there were light snacks and unlimited drinks for kids and adults. Theyalso have a small business center with 3 internet ready computers.
This is not a beachfront hotel so if you're really set on staying right on the beach and walking back and forth to your hotel, this might not be for you. I went to the beach but it was not the main part of my trip. It's an easy 5 minute (2 blocks) walk. Embassy's pool area is very big and they have shady spots too. I loved their hot tub which is a little secluded from the main pool area. While you're out, you might hear a plane or two, since the airport is near. It is not deafening, so don't let that keep you from staying here. Once you're in the room, you don't hear it at all.
We rented a car from holiday inn (next door and on the way to the beach) for about $49 and we got a mustang convertable since they didn't have any other cars left. renting a car is a good idea bc you can drive along the coast and see other areas. Be careful when you're on the road. PR drivers are a little rough.
After we gave the car back, we took advantage of the bus (25cents) and took the A5 to Old San Juan. The fort is a must see bc the views are just fantastic. The buses run until 9pm.
Embassy's casino is nice but a little small. You can use 5cents here so I was a fan. and i think players get free drinks. There is also live music playing from 6ish on. It wasn't so loud that I oculd hear it in my room. I stayed on the 7th floor.
Also shopping is tax free. They have a pretty American mall. We hit this up on a rainy day.
My only gripe about the hotel is that the concierge wasnt always there during her hours and it's hard to find a parking space in the garage bc so many people come for the casino and outback steakhouse (which is inside the hotel).
Convenient place to stay
We stayed here one night pre-cruise. We had 3 rooms for a family of 12. We were able to relax the night before the cruise, and enjoyed a cook-to-order breakfast before we caught a taxi to the cruise pier. Hotel was convenient to both the airport and pier. There is also a local supermarket nearby (within walking distance). Although we didn't get to enjoy all the amenities of the hotel due to time constraints, we did enjoy our short stay there. I would definitely stay there again!
3 days in San Juan
This coming June im planning a short trip to San Juan.Does anybody know about this hotels listed below: Embassy Suites San Juan-Hotel&casino
Isla verde Carolina,Puerto Rico,00979
Hampton Inn&Suites SanJuan
6530 Isla verde Avenue
How far this hotels from the airport of San Juan?Thank you for your help..
Re: 3 days in San Juan
Both hotels are less than 5 minutes from the airport. You will have to walk a little to get to the beach but both are located in nice areas.