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Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

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Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

Thinking of going to San Juan in the fall. After going to Aruba 3 times, I'm thinking of something different and also a bit less expensive! Does anyone have any suggestions on where to stay? We have been to the Hyatt and the Surf Club and love them and their locations; I'm hoping to find something similar in PR but it's so hard to figure out just by looking online!

I know this is the Aruba forum, and I come here almost daily, so please forgive the "non-Aruba" post. I'm just asking here because you all know the hotels and Palm Beach area I'm used to, and just hoping that someone will have recommendations on the San Juan area that would be comparable to Aruba.

Thanks in advance! :-)

Boston...
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1. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

Stayed at the Ritz in San Juan on a company trip and it was really nice. I did not like the area much though, It was too much of a city. The beaches were pretty but not as nice as Aruba IMO. Good luck.

New York City, New...
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2. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

I love San Juan and think it's one of my favorite Caribbean destinations. You should obviously post on the PR forum, however, I will say that you should realize the beaches in San Juan are not like Aruba. The sand is more golden and water not as blue, so be prepared for that. In addition, keep in mind that San Juan is a big metropolitan area. At night, people dress up to go out, it's not the laid back shorts and flip flop style of Aruba. However, what you will find is fun nightlife, friendly locals, delicious food, a varied topography (including a rain forest) and the beautiful little historic city of Old San Juan (Oranjestad is bland and boring compared to OSJ). There is much more to PR than San Juan, so if you want a more secluded and quiet setting look outside of the San Juan area.

Regarding hotels on the beach in the San Juan area look at places in Condado and Isla Verde. I personally like La Concha and El San Juan with a slight edge to El San Juan because the beach is a bit better. El San Juan also has great nightlife right in it's lobby. Locals of all ages (seriously I would say 18-80) love to come there to party and the dancing goes on in the lobby all night long. I love the vibe in San Juan.

New York City, New...
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3. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

BTW- I should mention, San Juan is our kids-free long weekend trip. So, I am looking at it from that angle. Aruba is our place to go with the kids although I could see us bringing the kids to PR one day as there are lots of great places on the island to explore.

Astoria, New York
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4. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

We stayed at LaConcha and loved it but not for the beach. It can't even be compared to Aruba. The pools are fantastic. It's in a great location walkable to restaurants and bars that are open all hours. It is a very lively hotel and just a short taxi ride to Old San Juan.

Cleves, Ohio
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5. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

jamsmom- We love PR. We stay in Luquillo and rent a car and apartment. If you don't want to rent a car the Isla Verde, Condado area are very nice... like Triz said, very walkable. Want to move there eventually

Woodbridge, New...
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6. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

We also stayed at El San Juan Hotel and Casino (after we couldn't get into the Ritz) but we ended up loving it! We stayed in one of their ocean front suites which was beautiful and the pool, lobby (had latin dance and live band performance almost every night) and casino were always a great time! Even though the beach here could not be compared to Aruba, it was always clean and the hotel always had staff waiting on beach goers from the hotel so you didn't even have to get up from your chair to get a tropical drink! (although i would suggest bringing a small portable cooler with your own alcohol since it would be much cheaper! lol) And the hotel location was wonderful as you are close enough to walk (safely) to many restaurants/shops on the main drag and even down and up one of the other streets to the local supermarket to buy liquor, snacks, whatever. Also it's a short cab ride away to Old San Juan which is must to check out, with soooo many different restaurants, bars, and just beautiful architecture to see and take pictures of. And DEF go to El Yunque, the rainforest on the island- it's awesome and one thing Aruba def doesn't have! lol Have a great trip!

New Jersey
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7. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

No, to much like a beach in a city. To much industry going on.

New York City, New...
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8. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

I forgot to mention that you should check out Guavate on a weekend afternoon. It's a town in the hills about a 45 minute drive from Isla Verde where they have these great pig roasts and other food stalls along with music and salsa. It's mainly locals but it is definitely tourist friendly too. Another similar but more urban experience in San Juan is to go to La Placita (Plaza del Mercado) on a Thursday or Friday evening. It's a small plaza around a market filled with little bars and restaurants where locals come to hang out after work. The music is loud, people are dancing outside and it's crowded but it's a fun evening. Generally it's a casual affair but there are two upscale restaurants in the area. Staying in Isla Verde gives you access to the beach, the city and mountains.

Edited: 27 July 2014, 19:21
New Jersey
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9. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

Thanks for all the replies! I'm noticing that this forum is much more chatty than the San Juan one ;-) Ugh, such a tough decision to make; pros and cons for both. It looks like we'd go to the Intercontinental in Isla Verde, which looks very beautiful; but no lazy river like the Surf Club and I absolutely love the lazy river! Decisions, decisions..... Thanks!

New Jersey
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10. Re: Anyone here love San Juan, PR as well?

If you really need a good vacation and don't feel like rolling the dice then go for what you know!