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“Top notch location (if you don't have a car). Horrible WIFI!”
Review of Hotel Belgica

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Hotel Belgica
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Ponce
Reviewed 14 September 2010

Good:
-----The hotels location is great - just feet off the main town plaza.
-----The A/C is the room is individually controlled and robust.
-----I flew into Ponce from another country and needed to do laundry. The hotel let me do it in their washer and dryer for free – they even let me use their laundry soap. This was a very kind gesture and the first of its kind in any of the 90 countries I have visited.
-----The décor is eclectic, charming, and colonial. Rooms have beautiful 15’ tall ceilings. Some have even have balconies.
-----The bed as one of the most comfortable I’ve ever slept in.
-----The lobby staff generally speaks decent English.
-----The continental breakfast is nice (not bad, not good – in the middle)
-----The cost/benefit radio is great for this hotel. Considering what they charge, you get a decent amount.

Bad:
-----The hotels free Wi-Fi Internet is HORRIBLE! It doesn’t reach most rooms, or even most of the lobby. It works for a few minutes, then stops for a few minutes. The hotel manager reset the router but that didn’t fix anything. The City of Ponce has free Wi-Fi but the signal doesn’t reach the hotel. The Burger King right down the street has free Wi-Fi.
-----The hotels water isn’t hot (probably because it’s solar heated). Out of the three days, the water wasn’t warm at all (only “not” cold). Only the last night I was able to get actual warm water.
-----There’s a fair amount of street noise all the time. Personally, it doesn’t bother me. I consider it to be the heartbeat of a town. But many others are bothered by it.
-----The hotel doesn’t promote the tourist activities in the area. Yes, there are some lame brochures in the lobby. But there was nothing about the trolley system the town runs. Nor anything about the old fire house in the square that’s the 2nd most visited place in Puerto Rico. Neither anything at the front desk of the concerts held in the square that evening or the next. They don’t get that they are not just running a hotel, but should enhance their guest activities too.


I would indeed stay at this hotel again.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled solo
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Thank GSTgst
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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253 - 259 of 370 reviews

Reviewed 8 September 2010

Great place to stay! The colonial look, the great service,convenient location and affordability...priceless! We'll be back :)

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Anairene
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2010

I spent three nights at the Belgica and enjoyed the stay. The front desk staff is friendly and very accomodating. I recommend that you have a suitcase that you are prepared to carry up and down stairs because there is no elevator. This was not an issue for me, but other guests had overpacked cases they had trouble getting up the stairs.
Be prepared for warm water and little shower pressure--the water is solar heated, so showers are hot late afternoon, but tepid any other time.
Parking can be an issue, but there is a parking lot behind the Melia Hotel that has manned overnight parking for only $5.
Yes, there is street noise, but remember that it is Puerto Rico and noise around a plaza is a given. Around the corner is a very popular club that gets very loud on weekends. If you get a chance, sit in the plaza and people watch. Lots of fun.
We stayed in room 21. It appears to be a cupboard from the hall, but once you enter, it is a suprisingly large and pleasant room.
Ponce is hardly a tourist destination, but it does have some pretty sites and fairly cheap eats. Right across the Belgica is a small cafe that serves delicious plate lunches and only a short walk away is a great bakery. The ice cream shop across the plaza is crazy good. A good sized portion was about $1.50. Try the parcha ice cream if you have a sweet tooth.
I will stay at the Belgica whenever I need to return to southern Puerto Rico. It was very reasonably priced, very clean, and friendly. I am a frequent traveler and have seen some of the best hotels--Aria, Las Vegas--and some of the worst--Murphey's Lodge, Lee Vining, CA---tjhe Belgica is a winner.

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled with family
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Thank spencersmom59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2010

As a travel agent for more than 20 years, and having travelled extensively, I can say that this place is perfect for the seasoned traveler, who is looking for the "hotel that fits the place". . If you want to be entertained with shows, casino, or looking for a gym, tennis courts, pool, spa, etc. this is NOT your place. Go to the Ponce Hilton instead, and pay the big bucks for these amenities. If you appreciate the history and the architecture that encircles this historic city, and only want the basics, then go ahead and have a feast at the Belgica. My sister and I stayed for 5 nights and loved every minute of it.
The owner did a great job trying to preserve the charm of this historic building and adding accordingly. Kudos to him. (I am sorry to say that I couldn't meet him, since I was on the run every day trying to absorb as much of the culture as possible, and attending to some planned events). The rooms have no telephone, no hair dryer, or iron, and yes, it can get noisy at times. I travel with ear plugs for this reason, so be ready and take yours. At this hotel , you are in the city, so expect noise! The beds were comfortable, the room and bathroom were clean. You will have a fridge, Tv, and place to hang your clothes, but no closet. You can't have everything in life, and a good traveler adapts. The staff was helpful and nice. Much better than at many other places I have stayed in the states, and in several countries in Europe. They are just simple hard working people who wants to be hospitable.. Do not expect a buffet breakfast either. It's very simple, just to get you going. The coffee could be better though. Suggestion to management: Puerto Rico has great coffee, and if you serve good coffee, you can help the economy by telling them what coffee you're serving.. the hotel can even sell it! Just charge it to the room!
There's no elevator, true, but the staff is willing to help out with luggage. I have a herniated disk and was helped. Also, be aware that parking is limited. We had trouble on Saturday night, when the lounges and bars are crowded. Parking is limited at any time of the day around the square, anyways. Avoid parking in dark areas, of course.
On Sunday, July 13th, there was a Santeros Fair, and unfortunately we couldn't stay but a lot of this art was offered, along with typical music. Make sure to have some of the ice cream at King's Cream by the Melia Hotel. Visit the cathedral and the historic Casa Poventud. Admire the old building that housed the Banco Popular and visit the City Hall. You will find souvenir stores but be aware that less then half of the merchandise is locally made.
On a sad note, I was heartbroken to see so many historic houses/ mansions that have been abandoned or vandalized in the area. I can't believe the government have allowed this to happen. Isn't there anyone interested in saving these gems of history? A lot can be said about the people who throws away their own history. People of Ponce, please do something!!!
If you need more info, and if I can help, you can contact me via email..

  • Stayed: July 2010
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2  Thank FranCarrollton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 July 2010

I got here about 3:30am on 6/5/10 to find a very friendly and courteous staff and very helpfull, specially at that time in the morning. (I would be grumpy if you ask me) but no, that set the perfect mood for our staying visit, I had not been to Puerto RIco in over 10yrs and was very pleasantly surprised when I got there, (I'm from Guayanilla,next town over) and I was reluctantly expecting a diferrent welcome and was some what prepared for that, but no, The staff could not be better.; always helpful and making sure that all was perfect. The hotel has this old world style charm that some how reminds you of the old time movies of yesterday, but with a touch of modern times. I'm already making plans for next year, this is the place I will be staying again. You have everything at your finger tips, places to see, eat and shop. Not far from any turistic site and yet able to find other places. You should try a walk in the plaza in the evening, sitting down on the benches while savoring the local natural ice cream across the plaza in front of the old firehouse, delicious and refreshing, and yet a few steps from the Hotel.
only negative thought was the lack of parking for the hotel guest (very few spots in front) but easy to get to start your day, in house room phones could be a plus., but other than that, I would recomend this Hotel to anyone of my friends planning to stay in Ponce anytime or anyone else for that matter.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank edaris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 July 2010

My husband and I stayed here for 2 nights on our honeymoon. The room was huge and gorgeous. We had one with two large sets of doors and a balcony. The furniture in the room and the rest of the hotel was very fitting for the old world style. Everything was very clean. The staff was great, very helpful with giving us suggestions and directions for places to go. There was free parking right in front of the hotel. They only have a few spaces, but there is a free lot around the block somewhere, we never had to go there, we always had a spot right out front. The shower had hot water and ok pressure.
It wasn't all great though. There were a few things that could have been betterw, nothing the hotle could help for though. The hotel is close to the street and in the morning you hear the traffic, its loud. Another thing, there were no windows in the room, just the big doors(you could either open the whole door or half of it which was like a window with slats going across it- you still can't see out) if any part of it was open you end up with mosquitoes in the room, not so fun unless you don't get bit by them.
Overall it was a great place, Ponce is a beautiful city and Hotel Belgica is a great palce to stay.

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Sevilla2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 June 2010

If you look for cleanliness, this is the hotel you are looking for. It's beautiful and clean. As soon as we got there, we felt good. The staff is very, very nice. And the room was really, really clean, I mean it. Not a spot. Big, comfortable beds and pillows. My kids were very happy. As it is located almost in front of the "plaza", we walked around, we ate, we saw the stores, and we took a trip in the touristic bus, without having to move the car. The water was warm, mmm. The breakfast was included, very healthy. The only complaint my kids have is that they wanted to watch TV but the Channels were limited, only five or six, only one for them. But, for everything else, we recommend it.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled with family
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1  Thank JanetteCarrasquillo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Belgica

Address: 122 Villa St, Ponce 00716, Puerto Rico
Region: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Ponce
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Ponce
Price Range: £70 - £118 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Hotel Belgica 2*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are in the heart of the historic district of Ponce. Rooms with cathedral ceilings and traditional balconies. Next to Plaza las Delicias and the Trolley Tour. Family owned and operated. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Belgica Hotel Ponce

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