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“Lovely place to stay” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of CasaBlanca Hotel

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CasaBlanca Hotel
Ranked #9 of 46 Hotels in San Juan
Certificate of Excellence
Paradise, California
Level Contributor
29 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Lovely place to stay”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 May 2014

We enjoyed this hotel in the heart of Old San Juan very much. The staff was friendly and the rooms and decor were beautiful. Loved the movie Casablanca playing on the back wall! In the morning, we had coffee downstairs in the bar area and had great conversation with our barista.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TamarindaL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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887 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (263)
Date | Rating
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English first
Weymouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 May 2014 via mobile

We stayed for two nights here on our way home after 2 weeks on a yacht. Just about everything was lovely, especially the location. Old San Juan was captivating, a special place to wander round.
Our room was very nice but the floor was a little grubby.
There was what looked like a convivial bar area on the ground floor, but I don't know if it was just at that time, but we never actually saw it open. It would have been good to try a drink there.
There were two outstanding aspects for us.
The first were the 5 stone baths on the roof. What a place to sit and sip a cold beer.
The second were the staff. I can't pick any single person out as the whole team that we came across were universally helpful, cheerful and friendly. They were the best hotel team we have found. Thank you all very much.

  • Stayed May 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank RogerSarginson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 May 2014

First of all I was very impressed by the Hotel capturing the spirit of Old San Juan from the moment of check in to check out. When I travel I like to embrace the culture of the place I am visiting and CasaBlanca Hotel made it happen. It has a sense of old world elegance with a touch of trendy and great choice of colors. Everyone was so warm, friendly and professional when I arrived with my fiance to celebrate our anniversary.

Anna- she was amazing! the moment she checked us in she was so informative about Old San Juan. She recommenced great places for us to visit. We let her know that we were interested in going to the Bio Bay and she set everything up for us and had instructions on how to arrive the next day. She was very thorough and detailed with all our requests. Our flight arrived a bit early ( we got to the hotel around 1pm) and we figured our room would not be available to check in but Anna told me to just give her 15 minutes and she would have the room ready. We decided to check in and go have some lunch. By the time we came back from the room our keys were ready and bags were waiting for us in room 2A (I would mention the bellman but I didnt get his name he was also very friendly).

Miguel- His personality is bursting at the seams! Usually me and my fiance' would arrive late to the hotel after running around Puerto Rico and he would recommend some good places for us to eat late and really good local spots for us to try and experience. We explained we didn't want "tourist" food places but some real authentic locations and he let us know all the great places.

Cindy - She was also very helpful with our bio bay reservation and storing our bags after checkout. Unfortunately the day of our checkout we were woken up by construction going on next door with loud hammering and tools but she quickly resolved the issue as soon as we called the front desk.

The tubs at the top of hotel was a great place to just relax and take in the views. We loved standing out on the terrace and feeling the energy of Old San Juan.

The only part that seemed to be a miscommunication maybe was with the Romantic Package that I didnt know my fiance was E-mailing the hotel back and forth and ultinmatly decided not to do it without me knowlege and I called the hotel inquiring about it without my fiances knowlege but decided to decline. Then the night of our anniversary they set up the romantic package in our room without our knowledge so it was a surprise to the both of us because we discussed passing on it. It was still very beautiful and made our trip better. I was just a bit disappointing when my fiance told me they charged us for 2 packages instead of 1. Although Cindy did say she would look into taking one off, so I did appreciate that.

with everything said and done I loved my experience in Puerto Rico and I am going to return. Honestly I do not see myself staying anywhere else but in this hotel. I loved it and they played a part in my anniversary being one to remember.

Room Tip: Room 2A is a great choice!
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Emmanuel R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco, California
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 May 2014

My wife and I were fortunate enough to spend two wonderful, non-consecutive nights at Casablanca this April. We’re two fairly young, value-conscious travelers, and we’re always interested in delving into what makes a specific destination special. Our visit to Puerto Rico included a late night flight into LMM, a trip out to Vieques, and a return to Old San Juan for touring and food. We selected Casablanca based on location (in Old Town) and insights from Tripadvisor. We were interested in an affordable boutique hotel in Old Town, rather than a beachfront resort to the east.

Before we even arrived in Puerto Rico, the friendly friendly staff at Casablanca made every contact a delight. We called for help rearranging some of our booking details, and they cheerily made it work. When we realized we’d need help getting to the ferry in Fajardo, Juan reached out to a friend of the hotel (Isa) to get us a private taxi.

Upon arrival at Casablanca - well past 10pm - Miguel was there at the desk to greet us. He gave us a personalized run-down of all the best restaurants and cafes for vegetarian folks (like us). Upon realizing that the kitchens at most would have already closed, he helped make arrangements for a special meal from the in house chef. (It was among the most delicious we had over the course of our trip!)

We put our things upstairs and dined in the beautiful lobby space. Each wall and alcove conveyed eclectic yet organized style, and our room perfectly matched it. Everything about the Casablanca was clean, colorful, and inviting. One got the sense that each room was a distinct decorating project, rather than just another copy of the one beside it.

We slept peacefully in a quiet room on the second floor. Though it was near the back of the building and without its own window, in the morning the room was filled with sun thanks to a substantial frosted skylight. We grabbed a light breakfast at a cafe two blocks away before catching our Fajardo-bound taxi. We later called from Vieques to make more taxi plans, and Cynthia helped assure all was properly scheduled.

When we returned to San Juan a few days later, we met Joyce, one of Casablanca’s two owners. It was a weekday morning and the hotel was humming with a flurry of activity. As carpenters worked on fixtures and painters freshened the walls, Joyce described an array of improvements she and her partner had planned to make the hotel all the more inviting for its guests. It was clear they were driven to realize a still-growing vision for what Casablanca could be. It also became evident that their adaptations were in part propelled by welcome feedback supplied by the Tripadvisor community. It was a delight to see how much personal love and energy was being invested in this special hotel.

We spent most of the rest of the day touring Old Town. For this, Casablanca could not have been better positioned. We popped back in in the early evening, recuperated a bit, the popped back out for dinner and drinks. That night, we slept in a gorgeous suite at the front of the building. Though we didn’t take too much advantage, it featured a private balcony seating space that overlooked the street below. The bed was comfy and clean, and the shower was warm and reliable.

For the wonderful staff, the ideal location, and all the charming details, Casablanca gets our most enthusiastic recommendation. We’d love to return, if only to see how it continues to evolve in the months and years to come. Thanks to everyone there for a terrific visit!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank joelw22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
30 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 May 2014

This place is bubbling over with charm and old-world elegance, and the staff truly makes the wonderful experience even better. As other guests have pointed out, there are no elevators, only stairs, but the staff is more than happy to carry your luggage up and down for you. It's fantastic location is convenient to everything. Our room was small but comfortable and the decor was cool and calming. The bed was super comfortable! The lobby is classy and inviting, and they have the movie "Casablanca" playing on tvs around the clock. The staff is incredibly friendly and willing to help and answer any questions you have about the area. It's worth hiking up the stairs all the way to the roof. They've turned the space into a really neat patio and seating area. There are individual, giant stone tubs that guests can soak in. The views of Old San Juan are spectacular from up here! I would choose this hotel again upon returning to San Juan. I LOVED IT!

Room Tip: If stairs are difficult for you, request a room on the 2nd or 3rd floor.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Shanannon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Liverpool
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 May 2014

We chose to stay in this hotel prior to starting our cruise and picked this hotel for its central location. What a little gem! Full of character, brilliant staff who kept the restaurant open for us weary travellers, clean ,quiet. Breakfast buffet was lovely and plenty of it and lovely champagne cocktails. Only thing that would improve this hotel is a lift,but staff are more than happy to carry your bags and won't accept atip they are just happy to help.
We would not hesitate to stay here on our next visit. We cannot recommend highly enough. Well done!

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank doreen_dunmore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oak Park, Illinois
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2014

My wife and I spent ten days in Puerto Rico and Vieques starting in early March. After a wonderful stint at Villa Coral in Vieques (see our 5-star review), we got a private tour of El Yungue with John Druitt (see our 5-star review) and then went to San Juan for the last leg of our trip. Unfortunately, our reserved room (for three nights) in San Juan, at SJ Suites, was absolutely terrible—smelly and unclean—(see our 1-star review) and we left there as soon as we could (still no refund for the third night, by the way).

After escaping SJ Suites, we were blessed with a room at Casablanca, in the center of Old San Juan. We cannot say enough about this hotel. If you are looking for something chic and old fashioned, something with island charm and modern super friendly service, you will be delighted by this one-of-a-kind hotel smack in the middle of Old San Juan.

What charming décor! The antique furnishings and artistic lighting invite you to get comfortable, have a seat, and linger. Everywhere you look the décor is interesting and eclectic, from the varied and exotic furnishing in the lobby to the quirky, whimsical paintings in our room. This beautifully furnished hotel was interesting in so many ways, including the black and white movie Casablanca that’s continually projected on a trio of HD monitors in the lobby as well as on the bar wall.

We had a room on the fifth floor, and as you may have read in other reviews, there were no elevators…yet. They expect to have them in operation this summer or fall, 2014. But no matter. An energetic hotel staff member quickly helped whisk our luggage up the stairs and had us situated quickly. One floor up was the rooftop. There, in addition to an interesting view of Puerto Rico, were several stone bathtubs. The one evening we were there, we filled two with water, opened a bottle of wine and relaxed as we enjoyed Puerto Rico’s nightfall, which was relaxing, quiet, and very romantic.

Our room and bathroom were small but clean and well-kept. The windows in the room opened to let in the lovely breezes, making it feel bigger than it actually was. Apparently, the fifth floor is last on the renovation list, but it didn’t really matter. The bed and bedding were comfortable and we felt we had the perfect accommodation for our last night in Puerto Rico.

And the staff. From the very start, we received impeccable attention. Cynthia and Joyce, at the front desk, answered all our questions with an assurance and friendliness that made us feel right at home. They also straightened out --with care, professionalism, and efficiency--some problems we had with Orbitz and another hotel we stayed out. We were grateful and very pleased with the service.

One final note, on the way up to your room, you’ll see, off the staircase, a sign that reads “Rick’s Office,” which we thought was a play on Rick Blaine, the Humphrey Bogart character from the movie Casablanca. Turns out the owner of the hotel is indeed named Rick, and his wife is Joyce. This is a family-run operation disguised as a cosmopolitan Rick's Café Américain, complete with that hotel’s exotic, eclectic décor. Congratulations, Monsieur Rick, your hotel is a lovely and fascinating gathering place, and we hope to return soon!

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank steveciii
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about CasaBlanca Hotel

Property: CasaBlanca Hotel
Address: 316 Fortaleza St. | Old San Juan, San Juan 00901, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > San Juan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 46 Hotels in San Juan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — CasaBlanca Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
New Elevator is up and running! CasaBlanca is a Boutique Hotel with 32 guestrooms with a lot of character and a personalized experience. We want you to love San Juan as much as we do by making sure your stay is pleasant and memorable. The structure is Spanish from the 1900's therefore rooms are mid to small sized, air conditioned and impeccable. Our beds are comfortable and equipped with microfiber linens and Hypoallergenic pillows, our bathrooms are small but private and unique, with amenities from the organic brand - Archive. Please ask front desk for complimentary items you might have forgotten to pack. Also available are: steamer, hairdryer, in room coffee maker and ice machine in lobby. Our Sun Deck offers guests a memorable experience with magical views of Old San Juan, watch the cruises as they disappear into the bay or enjoy the historical views of San Cristobal Fort next to the open Caribbean Sea. From tanning to reading, enjoy our comfortable lounge chairs, as well as our stone bathtubs provided for a deep relaxation in fresh water at your own desired temperature and time as it is open 24 hrs. Everything from our menu is available with one quick call to guest services from our service phone. Still worried about catching up with friends and family or posting your recent vacation pictures online, or maybe send a late work related email, not a problem, our high speed Internet is available everywhere in Hotel grounds. We are a smoke free, environmentally friendly, historically preserved Hotel where you will find a smiley face where ever you go! Cafe Americain conveniently located in the lobby serves a delicious breakfast every morning from 8 - 12 pm while streaming our favorite Hollywood movie CasaBlanca. Restaurant hours are 8am - 10pm Wed to Sun and 8am-11am for Mon to Tue. Offers a lunch menu selection of local cuisine as well as light options as sandwiches and salads. ... more   less 
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