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“Amazing 5 days in Paradise”
Review of Malecon House

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Malecon House
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Isla de Vieques
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
“Amazing 5 days in Paradise”
Reviewed 19 December 2013

We've both traveled the world and enjoyed every minute at Malecon House. The owners went above and beyond to make sure our trip ran smoothly. We happened to arrive in San Juan during a day long torrential downpour with all the commuter flights cancelled. Everyone at the hotel stayed in touch with us to make sure no matter what time we finally arrived at the island there would be someone there to welcome us to the hotel.

We had everything we needed in the room. The refrigerators were great to keep drinks cool for the beach days and there are many convenience stores in walking distance to pick up basic supplies. The hot water and water pressure were fabulous (unlike some other hotels on the island) and we had a lovely patio on our room. On rainy days there were umbrellas available and on sunny days there are always coolers, beach chairs, towels, ice, beach umbrellas, swimming noodles, etc. for you to pick up and use.

We loved the location. Waking up to the ocean every morning and being able to walk to numerous restaurants for dinners. We are counting down the days till we find another opportunity to stay at Malecon House again! Don't even think twice. Just book it and you will love every minute on the island and hope you get stranded here again.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Rachael B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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English first
Dulles, VA
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 December 2013

My wife and I stayed in the 'Buena Vista' for three nights back in January of 2013. Sure -- I agree with the BrooklynTraveller (even a year later) that the place is "expensive for what you get," but that's because I've never before dropped nearly $900 for that short a stay on the island -- and we've been visiting since the "navy days" ...long before the corporate "W's" and "boutique" crowd moved in.

BUT, we are still impressed with Marsha & Robin, as managers -- especially Marsha's recent effort to reply to a negative review. We enjoyed meeting them both, even though there was rarely an opportunity to properly "chat them up." It was an extremely busy time for them, and we know what a tough gig it is to run a place like that. They both handled the daily stress and little hassles (guests who carelessly left the gate open!) with grace and humour.

I appreciate how they designed the Malecon House and had no problem with the bed or anything else, really. I understand the tourism biz as a typical supply & demand situation, where a "fee" charged for a "service" might seem quite high; but there's usually a competitor offering something a bit 'lower.' I can choose the less expensive, but I may still leave feeling like I overpaid "for what you get."

All-in-all, we would recommend the Malecon House. If you desire a more laid-back (and affordable) beach island getaway -- hop over to CULEBRA! That, for us, is much like Vieques USED TO BE :^) No one there, for the most part, is trying to out-posh the next guy.

One personal peeve I had with our stay was really the actions of other guests -- always stepping just outside their ground-level room to suck on their damn cigarettes. Marsha & Robin politely and rightfully request that their rooms be kept smoke-free; but having that stench wafting up to one's $300 balcony every day, courtesy of the sophisticated NY couple below, was enough to keep me away next time. The 'smoke-free zone' should be required throughout the property. After all -- it's literally steps across the street to the seaside MALECON, where young couples can snuggle and romantically smoke their lives away!

Cheers to the Poms! Well done.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Miss_Mud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brooklyn, NY
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 December 2013

Our stay at the Malecon House was the disappointment of our trip to Puerto Rico, especially after reading all of the positive reviews online. These reviews rave about the owners, but never once did they introduce themselves during our entire stay. The people who otherwise work there were not helpful in providing information, seemed more preoccupied with their own personal calls than with answering questions, and did not even take the time to show us around the property when we arrived. We were very disappointed as this claimed hospitality is why we chose the Malecon over other impersonal properties (i.e. the W).

The good news: the location is great and the common areas of the building are very clean and beach-appropriate as are the bedrooms. The items left for guests to use (coolers, chairs, umbrellas) were very helpful, though it would benefit Malecon to also have snorkeling stuff, just as many other island B&Bs supply for guests. Similarly, it would be nice if they had some sort of "honor bar" for guests to use (or room bar) so that guests do not have to go out to buy every item each time s/he wants something to drink.

The bad news: the beds are incredibly uncomfortable and cheap, which they try to mask by putting on thin egg crate mattress toppers and breakfast is abysmal with bruised old fruit (in the tropics? how can they not get fresh fruit?) and granola/cereal (but not even yogurt as others have pointed out).

We really wanted to like this place - and were very excited about it. And, while it looks nice from afar and it is well-located, it just didn't have the warmth, hospitality, or special touches that elevate a property like this from something average to something truly special. For what it is, it is definitely overpriced.

Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank BrooklynTraveller30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ViequesPom, Owner at Malecon House, responded to this review, 7 December 2013
We are sorry that we did not live up to your expectations. It’s hard to understand that you stayed at the same place as the many positive previous reviewers- all senior reviewers with many detailed reviews to their name. However, a poor review is bound to happen and the solution is to accept with grace – apologize, then make ourselves even better…… and enjoy being on the beautiful island of Vieques.
At check in (3–6pm) guests are guided to their rooms and given an introduction to Malecon House. You arrived about 9 pm and as arranged there was someone here to greet you. It also means that we would tend to leave a tour of the property until the next day in the light. Important in-room items are noted- AC, hot-hot water, safe etc. Also pointed out are ice machine, hot/cold water dispenser, the gate (to keep the wild horses out of the garden and off the plants at night) and late serving restaurants that guests can easily walk to. If Robin or I missed making sure that you were properly welcomed the next day and we did not connect altogether, we do apologize. Sometimes on short stays our paths do not cross for a proper introduction and perhaps you hadn’t realized the grey haired guy working in the garden every morning is Robin and Marsha is the one walking around with a cheery/goofy smile on her face. Perhaps we need to update our old website photos- or not…... Robin’s been a little out of things this past month with an old back injury and flu. We’ve also had no phone line for most of November and the staff has been on their cells a lot doing all of the concierge things we do. We are blessed with truly wonderful staff- they are a great asset.
Regarding the scarcity of good, locally grown fruit, I think the TA forum posts are helpful- link below.

http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g147326-i649-k4539927-Where_are_all_the_local_fruits_and_veggies_in_Vieques-Isla_de_Vieques_Puerto_Rico.html

Please note that the political comments are not mine but I think the forum posts give a fair picture of the fresh local fruit situation on island. We grow some of our own but it’s not always in season.
We take to heart your comments- and others- about breakfast yoghurt and will be including this in approx. two weeks (subject to availability as we are an island off an island and virtually everything is imported via the inconsistencies of the ferry service). However, we inform on our website what our simple continental breakfast contains and it is not intended to be a major meal. We are lucky to have great restaurants very close by who serve a delicious cooked breakfast and soft and hard drinks. Whilst we love to do things as nicely as humanly possible, I’ll let you into a secret: after close to 40 years in the Caribbean we follow the KISS principle. (Keep It Simple Stupid)……..it works.
The bed in your particular room is called a platform bed- it is solid wood and believe me- much to my husband’s chagrin- I have never picked out anything cheap in my entire life!. The eggshell topper is on to keep you cool- I really don’t think you would of enjoyed sleeping with the sheet directly on the waterproof mattress pad we are required to have on the mattresses. We do have rooms with more traditional – king sized 4 poster and sleigh beds that you might of been more familiar with.
Today is a beautiful day in Vieques- a lovely fresh morning. The rain that we’ve had for much of November and during your visit has blown itself out and the gardens at Malecon House have never looked better. The hummingbirds are filling themselves from all the flowers and I am amazed at all the different colors of green there can be. I enjoyed a lovely walk on Esperanza Beach and the water was crystal clear; the sky blue with clouds of fluffy white. I wish you would visit us again- we would pamper you and show there are so many simple wonderful things to enjoy at Malecón House and Vieques.
Marsha
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Chicago, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
17 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 November 2013

This is a spectacular property in Vieques. If you have not been here, stay here.

The Property: One thing that doesn’t come through in the reviews is how lush the area is just to the east of the property. It has a rain forest/Costa Rican feel to it and the smell from all the surrounding foliage and flowers is intoxicating. The cocqui frogs at night are not quiet but if you complaining about frog noise then perhaps you should vacation in a large metropolitan area rather than Vieques. The property is well-maintained and very clean. The pool is a little gem. It is not a token pool and the website photos simply cannot do it justice. It is set among the lush edge of the property and offers you a quiet place to relax after beach hopping.

The Rooms: Our room (Mar Azul) was very clean and simple. The highlight was the terrace which faced the sea. It had comfortable chairs and came equipped with a mini-fridge. The beds were comfortable and the view overlooking the Caribbean Sea was extraordinary. When we stayed air conditioning was a must, so we heard very little street or bar noise over the noise of the air conditioner. The rooms were cleaned daily; no complaints.

The owners: Marsha and Robin are gracious hosts and very knowledgeable and helpful.

The Location: Malecon House is near the edge of the strip on Esperanza. It was so convenient to walk to the restaurants down the street and not have to drive or park. We were a 1 minute walk from Belly Buttons which was our favorite bar on the whole Esperanza strip. It was great to enjoy an evening drinking Pain Killers and then be in our room 2 minutes later. The Green Store around the bend from the strip is stocked with food, beer, wine, drinks and toiletries. We were able to stock up on our beach needs such as beverages.

The Fringe Benefits: one of the unsung benefits of Malecon House is that it offers ice, plastic coolers, comfortable beach chairs, beach towels, beach toys and equipment and umbrellas for beach hopping. We came to Vieques for the beaches and Malecon House did more than enough to equip us to enjoy them. We were able to pack up our Jeep and have everything we needed to spend an entire day relaxing on the magnificent Vieques beaches.

The Breakfast: suitable. Sure, the fruit could be fresher and more offerings made. Even some yogurt would have given us a little protein. If you want a more elaborate breakfast, Belly Buttons (adjacent to Malecon House) can meet your needs.

Nitpicks: the room could use a little more color and perhaps some artwork to make it more warm. The bathroom lacked sufficient counterspace even though it was just two of us. The air conditioner was a touch on the loud side. The wi-fi only worked in common areas. We understand the ownership’s desire to encourage “unplugging” when on vacation, but we needed connectivity to research beaches, restaurants and activities on the island and wished to do so from the comfort of our room. If it’s a cost issue, we would have paid a small fee to have had that option. Lastly, the toilet paper was institutional.

We originally had reservations at the W Resort, but our desire to be closer to the restaurants, beaches and activities made our decision even easier. Malecon House offered us all of that. We were glad we made the switch. We look forward to our return trip to Vieques and Malecon House.

Room Tip: Fantastico and Mar Azul offer the best ocean views.
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ChgoDiver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 November 2013

My friend and I stayed here for a few nights and really enjoyed it. The location is perfect - a short walk down the road to rent snorkel gear and then a stroll along the beach and quick swim across the bay for some awesome snorkeling. The hotel had boogie boards and other beach toys we could borrow, and the hosts were very knowledgeable and friendly. It is right across the street from a board walk featuring amazing sun sets, and roof access makes for a nice view of the stars.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ronetwo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington, District of Columbia, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 October 2013

My husband and I last minute decided to go to Vieques for the biobay and Malecon House was essentially the only place willing to accommodate us on such short notice, even though it was the slow season (in October). I'm SO glad they did because we loved our stay there even if it was only for one night. The room was minimally decorated but stylish and clean, and the shower was awesome. All of the employees were immensely helpful and I felt went beyond my expectations for great customer service. And the location was *perfect*. When we go back to Vieques we will make sure to stay at Malecon House.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Melissa B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ViequesPom, Owner at Malecon House, responded to this review, 29 November 2013
Thank you for your review and your positive comments on the Malecon House location and style. We have great staff and I know they try very hard to please. You probably noticed the solar panels on the roof which amply heat the water for the entire hotel and give us great showers.
We hope we have enticed you back for a longer stay next time.
'Till then, best regards, Robin
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Greensboro
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 October 2013 via mobile

My wife and I heard about Malecon house from some friends who had visited Vieques. Boy are we glad they told us about this wonderful guest house! Located directly across from the water, Malecon House offers AMAZING views, especially at sunset. Robin and Marsha are outstanding hosts/owners! They provided us with lots of info on where to go and how to get there. The Verde room was so nice! Plenty of room for two and spacious enough for three. Breakfast was great with a wonderful scene of life on Vieques. It's also located within walking distance of several a bars and restaraunts. Minutes from the beach and other fun activities!! I HIGHLY recommend The Malecon House to any traveler!! My newly wife and I can't wait to come back! Thanks to Robin and Marsha for the memories and hospitality!!

Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Josh Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ViequesPom, Owner at Malecon House, responded to this review, 29 October 2013
How wonderful that you chose Malecon House to help celebrate your honeymoon!. Thanks so much for staying with us and being such positive guests. Word of mouth is definitely our best and most satisfying advertising. Hope to see you back soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Malecon House

Property: Malecon House
Address: 105 Calle Flamboyan, 00765-4003, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Isla de Vieques
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Isla de Vieques
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Malecon House 3*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The recipient of TripAdvisor's 2015 Excellence Hall of Fame Award, Malecon House is a 13-room inn situated on the Malecon, a fun, picturesque Caribbean seaside boardwalk in the charming village of Esperanza, Vieques, Puerto Rico. Stroll to interesting beach bars, a variety of restaurants, boutiques and exciting island-style activities. Close by, enjoy fine dining, upscale shopping, funky exotic nightlife, exhilarating ocean sports and beaches of unmatched natural beauty. Or enjoy peaceful seaside relaxation in the hotel’s beautiful gardens and oasis pool. The bioluminescent bay tours pick up right down the street where you can also rent snorkel gear, kayaks and jet skis. Free onsite parking though a car is not essential. We offer a complimentary continental breakfast on our sea view terrace where you can savor Puerto Rican coffee, tea, cereal, fresh fruit and homemade muffins. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Malecon House Hotel Isla De Vieques

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