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“Great for families with young children, with a couple of caveats”

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Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton
Ranked #25 of 47 Hotels in San Juan
Franklin, Massachusetts
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Great for families with young children, with a couple of caveats”
Reviewed 15 March 2012

My husband, two children (ages 4 and 7) stayed at the Condado Lagoon Villas and felt the space was ideal for families. The villa consisted of one bedroom with two double beds, a bathroom (with tub), a small kitchenette, and a balcony. The adjoining room had a full kitchen, updated bath (with stall shower), living area with pull-out couch, and another balcony.

There is a small pool for Villa guests only, but we didn't use it; the kids loved the larger main pool. You can access the main pool/beach and lobby either by walking inside or outside, and we didn't feel the separation from the main hotel was an issue at all.

We were generally happy with our stay, and would most likely stay again. Having young kids, our biggest concerns were adequate space and beach and pool areas, and we were happy with all of these.

Here are our highlights and things we didn't love:

Pros:
-The view of the ocean from the balconies was fabulous.

-The front desk told us the hotel was sold out, yet we never felt it was overly crowded.

-The two rooms (with door between) was ideal for us. After the kids went to bed, we still had tons of space we could utilize.

-The pool area was beautiful. The pool water was on the cool side, but there is a swim-up bar (on a different level than the regular pool so you *can't* sit at the bar and still watch your kids swim, and many lounge chairs.

-The beach is private and very clean. It was extremely windy when we visited and the ocean was rough, but there is a breakwater for the beach so even when there were high-wind warnings, the water was calm. If it's not too windy, you can request the staff bring an umbrella to you.

-You can walk to Condado in 15 minutes, where there are several restaurants. (We ate at Ropa Vieja and Casa Lola; both were excellent -- far superior to the hotel restaurants. There is also a Denny's and Chili's for pickier eaters.)

-The gym is a true, full gym, not your typical hotel "fitness center."

Cons:
-Housekeeping was inconsistent. They did come every day but sometimes they would restock supplies (like coffee and dish soap) and other times they didn't. We found leaving a daily tip and note with what we needed (e.g., extra towels) worked well.

-Staff were fine, but not amazing. We had a couple of specific issues:

When we first arrived, the door to the LR/kitchen was locked, and we thought the bedroom with the kitchenette was our "suite." The second day, housekeeping left a note saying they realized we had both rooms and unlocked the door. We called management to get a one-night refund of the difference in price (not a full refund; we just wanted to pay for the one room that night, instead of paying for the suite). Over the course of 4 days, we called 4-5 times and no one ever called back. Finally, my husband held for 20 minutes until a manager came to the phone. He said he would get back to us after checking with housekeeping and did eventually credit us.

The website and promotional material says kids under 5 eat free and kids 5-12 eat for half-price at "select restaurants." (Also, one said "does not include room service" and another says "including room service.") We asked the front desk and two different concierges what restaurants these were, and no one could tell us. One concierge suggested we call or visit each restaurant and ask them. (We never figured it out.)

-The restaurants, including the grill by the pool, were extremely expensive and the food was unhealthy and unappetizing. For instance, two turkey sandwiches with fries was $28. We ended up not ever eating at the pool grill. We did eat at the "Italian" restaurant but ended up ordering traditional PR food. It was fine but not worth the money; there are better options in Condado or Old San Juan -- ask the concierge for recommendations.

We ate one day at the Pina Colada Club by the hotel entrance. Even though we were "the first customers of the day," they were out of several menu items. My kids each ordered a kids' burger. My daughter got a regular burger and my son ended up with a chourico burger. He ate it, so we didn't complain, but for a $60 meal, we expected more.

-Don't eat at Morton's. While it's the Morton's prices you expect, it's not the typical good Morton's service and food.

Tips:
-Have the cab driver stop at the grocery store on the way to the hotel from the airport. He only charged us an extra $8 for the extra stop and 20 minute wait. We got breakfast food, milk, snacks, beer, wine, and rum at the grocery store. The rooms have a full kitchen with stove, oven, full fridge, microwave, and dishwasher so you can save money (and eat healthier) by eating some meals in your room. (We decided to forgo the hotel breakfast buffet and eat breakfast in the room every morning.)

-Buy lunch at Starbucks in the hotel lobby. They have hot and cold sandwiches, yogurt parfaits, drinks, etc. at a much better price than the hotel restaurants.

-Walk into Condado or cab it into Old San Juan for dinner.

-Take advantage of Happy Hour specials at the hotel restaurants. For instance, the hotel bar has $5 veal sliders and $3 hummus and $5 drink specials from 5-7.

-Take the free pilates and yoga classes at the beach in the morning.

-Visit Castillo San Felipe del Morro. It's a $14 cab ride from the hotel and $3 admissions (kids are free). We all loved it, and then we walked into Old San Juan for lunch and sightseeing.

-We all loved the half-day excursion to El Yunque rain forest. We heard great things about the full-day trip, but thought it would be too much for the kids.

Room Tip: Be sure you get a villa with the adjoining room (or you can have two bedrooms adjoining the kitchen...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank kellieander
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LGMarcano, Manager at Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton, responded to this review, 10 April 2012
Thank you for choosing the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton as your “home away from home” during your visit to beautiful Puerto Rico.

We appreciate you taking the time to share your experience while at our property. We hope to see you back in the near future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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English first
Ottawa, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 March 2012

The hotel was nice. The rooms are a decent size but could be cleaner. There is a kitchenette in the rooms and there was still food in the fridge from the last guests, as well as food in the cupboard.

The resort is lovely. Large pools and a nice beach. The service was good, the food was only average. I'd try another hotel in San Juan before going back to this hotel, at over $300 per night.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank smitch1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LGMarcano, Manager at Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton, responded to this review, 16 April 2012
Thank you for sharing your comments on your recent stay at our property. I will share your comments with our Management Staff and take your comments in consideration to take any corrective action possible. We hope you give us the opportunity to serve you in the near future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 March 2012

Fantastic place to relax and have fun. The walk to the main portion of the resort is very pleasant along the sea and past an old (closed) heritage site, with views of the Condado area. Has it's own swimming pool and spa for Lagoon Villa guests only. Also different kinds of birds, including peacocks roam the the grounds, adding some colour during the day. We had a seaview room, which overlooked the Lagoon and the sea, with the Conrad right across the lagoon. Beautiful sunsets and sunrises can be watched from the balcony.

Had a couple of issues which were promptly resolved, one was with a tap in the bath no running properly and the guys from engineering, although they took a little while to arrive, after all this is the carribean, then proceeded to take care of it efficiently. Another was the the door covering the minifridge whcih could not be opened as no key could be found, but this was evetually sorted.

It is a little out from all other resorts and from the Old San Juan, although you can take a bus or taxi, although taxis are more expensive. If you fancy a walk, the it is very pleasant to walk across the bridge to Condado, whe there a many restaurants and bars, as well as other resorts. We walked to La Concha resort and back.

The breakfast in Giardino's is ok, but not good for this quality of hotel, unless you want to pay extra to eat at one of the other restaurants, which is even more expensive, but much better quality breakfast.

Overall, a great place to stay, staff made our stay wonderful.

Room Tip: Ask for an upgrade to overlooking the Lagoon with a sea view, fantastic sunrise and sunsets can be o...
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank GeoSA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LGMarcano, Manager at Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton, responded to this review, 10 April 2012
Thank you for choosing the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton as your “home away from home” during your visit to beautiful Puerto Rico.

We appreciate you taking the time to share your experience while at our property. We hope to see you back in the near future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montana
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 March 2012

We booked rooms 7101 and 7102 for one night which included a two queen bed villa with attached parlor adding an extra queen pull out sofa bed, kitchenette and dining table.

Booking Process - The on-line booking was simple enough, however, when we received the confirmation email it only showed the parlor room with 1 queen pull out sofa bed and didn't give any indication of it being attached to the first room which had the two queen beds. Each room had its own booking number, but the first room with 2 queen beds showed a zero $$ amount which made me nervous that it wasn't actually reserved. It took no less than 6 or 8 attempts to contact Hilton whose staff kept saying I needed to speak directly to the on sight hotel. However, every time I called, I was referred back to the Hilton line. Finally, after 6 or 8 attempts, I was able to reach someone who could verify that our reservation was, in fact, for the 3 queen beds. It took over 3 hours to get that straightened out which was frustrating to say the least.

Check-in was very efficient and simple. We were pleasantly surprised that our room was ready early which made for a very nice start to our stay since we could take all of our luggage directly to our room rather than having to put it in the baggage holding area.

Room - Upon check-in, we were told our room had a "very nice ocean view" so imagine my surprise when I pulled back the curtains and was met with a view of a service building of some sort directly out our patio door. The ocean view was only a narrow glimpse to either side of said building. The rooms were spacious and clean with very comfortable beds and pillows.

Food - The food prices are probably about right for a hotel of this nature, but they were more than we wanted to pay for our family of six. We asked the front desk for a suggestion for ordering in pizza. We were referred to Charles Pizza with whom we placed our order and were told it would take 40 minutes. After an hour, we called again and were told the delivery man was waiting for us out front. My husband and daughter went out to get our pizza, but the pizza man was no where in sight. We called again, and were told he would be there in 10 minutes. By the time our pizza arrived it was cold and over 30 minutes late. The pizza itself has nothing to do with the hotel other than we ordered based on the recommendation of the front desk so we were disappointed there wasn't better service and that we had to pay to make 2 additional phone calls beyond the initial order.

Pool area - was very nice and clean although some of the chairs were soiled. The area was monitored by a very friendly and helpful man who passed out the towels and kept an eye on the entire area. If you like your hot tub water "hot" beware that the water in this hot tub is only luke-warm. I'm referring to the smaller pool area around the corner from the main pool area which we chose because it was much quieter and had far fewer people.

Beach area - the scenery here was beautiful. There is a nice area to walk out and feed the fish which also had a light shining down into the water so you could seem some night time fish activity as well. There were plenty of options for resting including nice hammocks in a sandy and shady area which looked lovely, beach chairs in a circular cement area which went out into the bay area, as well as chairs/umbrellas all along the sandy beach. It also looked like there were little huts of some sort for rent.

Recreational Activities - We were excited to try out a few of the water activities offered through the hotel. The night before we asked what time the rental area opened and we were told 8:00. So, we showed up at 8:15 and were then told by the towel person that the rental lady wouldn't be there until 9:30. After she arrived, we wanted to rent 2 stand-up paddle boards, however, even though they had two on site we could only rent one because they only had one paddle. BUMMER! So, we then started with a 2 person pedal boat which ended up breaking 45 minutes into the 60 minute rental. Another BUMMER!! Additionally, there was a basketball area which the kids would have enjoyed using but there weren't any basketballs......

Check-out.... There was a very long line which took at least 15 minutes to get through. After getting all the way to the front of the line then a man came around asking if everything was correct on the bill then we could just leave our keys with him. It would have been nice to have had a separate line for that type of check out. The bill they delivered to our room was what I expected to be billed for (other than the water activities rental which wasn't on there yet). However, after getting home I checked online and see that we were charged $135.30 more than what it should have been after adding on the water activities rental and I'm still waiting for someone to call me back to itemize those charges. After the lengthy run around I had trying to get confirmation of our reservation during the booking process, I have my doubts that I'll actually get hold of anyone regarding these charges.

In summary, the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton is in a beautiful ocean front location conveniently located near the cruise port yet not too far from the airport with wonderfully spacious grounds with a nice mix of water, sand, grass, walking paths, etc. However, given the above issues with booking, billing, and amenities, I feel the hotel was not a good value for our money.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Cynthia362
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LGMarcano, Manager at Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton, responded to this review, 16 April 2012
Thank you for choosing the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton as your “home away from home” during your visit to beautiful Puerto Rico. We appreciate your feedback as it is important for us in order to better understand our customer’s need and where we can improve. We aim to exceed your expectation and will continue working very hard every day to ensure a great customer experience.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hollywood, Florida
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 February 2012

If you like to go to San Juan and don't want to rent a car, this hotel is just perfect. You can share all the amenities of the next door Hilton Grand, but the rooms are bigger. More like an small studio with kitchen, table and chairs. Full refrigerator with ice maker, coffee maker, and else.
The Hilton has a private beach and a beautiful swimming pool area. Enough restaurants and short trip to Old San Juan, Condado and Isla Verde.
Staff very helpful. Rooms clean and well maintained. Maybe needs some renovations but nothing too big to complain about.
Internet is by cable and with a charge. You only have free wireless access in the lobby area.
There is a Starbucks in the lobby, I Giardino for italian food, Morton's, the bar on the swimming pool and inside the lobby for burguers, fries and other simple food and other options if you don't like to go out on the city (I recommend to go out and enjoy it. But if you prefer, you can stay in the hotel and you will find everything there).

I really enjoyed my stay and will be back as soon as I can to San Juan, and specially to this hotel, because it's the best choice when it comes to price-service-quality.

Room Tip: If you ask for Oceanfront, the best ones are on second floor or higher.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Pitbull954
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LGMarcano, Manager at Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton, responded to this review, 10 April 2012
Thank you for choosing the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton as your “home away from home” during your visit to beautiful Puerto Rico.

We appreciate you taking the time to share your experience while at our property. We hope to see you back in the near future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Yonkers, New York, United States
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 February 2012

I have been to Puerto Rico at least a dozen times and I have to say that this was the best experience that I have ever had. When we first arrived Omar and Maria at the front desk were very helpful. Pedro was also the best!!!!. When we went to the pool Augustus made sure we had everything we needed!.I loved the pool area because it was away from the main pool and very quiet. This hotel is absolutely beautiful! We rented a two room Villa (#7314) and it was GREAT!! I would definetly recommend the Villas for anyone traveling with a family. The resturants were good! Ate at the Italian and the Pina Colada Club which were very good. Overall we ate in the room as we had a full kitchen. They even supplied pots, pans, silverware and glasses. The view of the lagoon and the ocean was beautiful!!!! I will definetly be going back!!!!!!!!

Room Tip: The lagoon villas are very quiet.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Lynn T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LGMarcano, Manager at Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton, responded to this review, 10 April 2012
Thank you for choosing the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton as your “home away from home” during your visit to beautiful Puerto Rico.

We appreciate you taking the time to share your experience while at our property. I will share your comments with Omar, Maria and Pedro as well as with the rest of the staff. We hope to see you back in the near future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 February 2012

Our 2nd time to the Condado Lagoon Villas, and probably our 5th or 6th time to the Caribe Hilton. We find it to be exactly what we need each time for a very easy and pleasant long week end in San Juan.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Refs09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LGMarcano, Manager at Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton, responded to this review, 16 April 2012
Thank you for choosing the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton as your “home away from home” during your visit to beautiful Puerto Rico. We are delighted to read that you returned to our property and had a pleasant stay. We appreciate your loyalty to our property and our brand and hope you continue choosing the Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton as your preferred hotel in Puerto Rico.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton

Property: Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton
Address: 1 San Geronimo Street, San Juan 00901, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > San Juan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Spa Hotel in San Juan
#9 On the Beach Hotel in San Juan
#12 Luxury Hotel in San Juan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Condado Lagoon Villas at Caribe Hilton 4*
Number of rooms: 96
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Peaceful and set aside, the Condado Lagoon Villas are close to all the Caribe Hilton resort amenities and can enjoy the flexibility of our villa accommodations, each divisible into three separate units or combined into spacious suites, perfect for families or groups. Guests at the Condado Lagoon Villas can also enjoy the convenience of a separate check-in exclusively for Villas guests. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Condado Lagoon Villas At Caribe Hilton Hotel San Juan

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