My husband and I just returned from an amazing six days at the Rio Mar Beach Resort. We found a great price on Hotwire ($114/night + $15/day parking). The resort is close to the rainforest which was a plus for us because we enjoy hiking. This well-developed National Forest is very user friendly. We especially loved the La Mina waterfalls. It gets a bit crowded on weekends so a mid-week hike might be preferable. We enjoyed staying at the Rio Mar. All the staff were genuinely friendly and helpful. We ate only two meals at the resort because we enjoy local restaurants more. There is a great, tiny bakery/restaurant, Isamar, at the turn off the main route into the road for the hotel. We had breakfast there one morning, got takeout sandwiches for a picnic lunch on another day, and twice we picked up pastries to enjoy on our balcony overlooking the ocean. The people who work/own the bakery were very welcoming.
In addition to hiking and enjoying the beach at the resort, we spent one very hot but fun day in Old San Juan. The view from the fort was breathtaking. We escaped the heat and had lunch at the Cyrus Persian Grill at 156 Cristo. You go through the gift shop and arrive at a small, cool enclosed courtyard restaurant. The fresh lemonade and spinach 'omelette' (tiny cakes topped with a yogurt dressing) were wonderful.
This trip was a welcome respite from our long and bitter New England winter!