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“Nicest hotel in San Juan...” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan

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The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan
Ranked #6 of 13 Hotels in Isla Verde
Certificate of Excellence
Pittsburgh PA
Level Contributor
368 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 478 helpful votes
“Nicest hotel in San Juan...”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 June 2014

Previously stayed at the Conrad, Hilton Caribe, Embassy, El San Juan and Double Tree. This time I wanted a nicer hotel experience since I was spending the entire week yet still 5 miles from my hospital I was working at. First off, it was hard to find coming from the airport and not in the proper lane (better signage would fix) after a circle around I arrived. The entrance landscaping and first impression was nice, I self parked in the garage ($17+tax/ day). Check-in area is small but they helped me right away and I was in my room within 5 minutes.

Room: standard king room with ok view from large window and no balcony, plenty of drawer space and nice size closet, small wall safe (iPad size not laptop size), marble bathroom w/shower-tub combo, separate room for the toilet, single bowl sink, fluffy newer towels. Good lighting in the room for late night work, the bed was comfortable. The room did look worn, nothing that new carpet and fresh paint wouldn't take care of...the carpet is bad but the carpet everywhere except the lobby needs replaced. Housekeeping was very good.

Pool and beach: pool was nice, the loungers were packed tight, plenty of pool staff to get drinks/ food, pool bar had limited menu, tons of kids...I mean tons. Cabanas $250/day and set off to the side which was nice but they are also tight together, I was looking for a quit area. Beach sand was tan colored and manicured well, warm ocean, palm trees for shade, tons of chairs with pads and umbrellas.

Gym: very nice but small, good selection of equipment, towels, water

SPA: got a mani/pedi- was very good, I was the only one in their at the time, used steam room, offered me wine, soda or water, coed jacuzzi and sauna.

BLT: 8oz. Filet, grilled asparagus and creamed spinach, everything was very good, sat at the bar- great service, 2 Martini's, $118 plus tip. The bar and restaurant was packed so very loud. If I was here for a romantic dinner with my wife...I might have a different opinion.

Casino: tables and slots, not too smokey, not too crowded.

One evening I drove over to the St Regis to visit that hotel and dine at Fern as I am bringing my wife back in 2 weeks, so I wanted to see which hotel she would like...hands down the St Regis and "service" is the reason. I told both hotels I was bringing my wife back for a week vacation and I'd like to pick a constant hotel for my 4x a year I travel to PR... The St Regis did back flips to earn my business the Ritz Carlton passed me off to 3 different employees including a manager/supervisor and they offered nothing. Not that I was looking for freebies...but a better view in the room or free breakfast...something for my upcoming loyalty.

Won't be back but would recommend if needing to stay in San Juan.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank elf.dml
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RCSJU, General Manager at The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Dear guest,
I appreciate the feedback you posted on Trip Advisor regarding our resort. Thank you for experiencing all our facilities while on property and for sharing the nice comments about the pool, beach, spa and restaurant. I am sorry that we did not go the extra step to win you as a future guest for your next vacation with your wife. Even though all areas may have been busy, there are times of the year when we are not in school vacation breaks and you have a much quieter pool and beach ambience.
We would love to have a chance to have you back as our guests for you to enjoy our resort.
Please feel free to reach out to me directly.
Warm regards,
Jackie Volkart
General Manager
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
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (675)
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English first
East Meadow, New York
Level Contributor
60 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 June 2014

We just returned home from spending 6 days there. The staff is attentive and the service above and beyond our expectations, but the hotel is far from what we expected. The rooms are run down, the pool is old and dirty. We talk to other guests and they were equally disappointed. Breakfast was ok but it lacked the tropical fruits that I was expecting to see and it was very expensive. We ate outside the hotel very day since the restaurants in the hotel were quite expensive also. Definitely this hotel does not meet the standards of a 4 start hotel and we will never go back. There are more beautiful and less expensive hotels to go to in Puerto Rico.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank alicea97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RCSJU, General Manager at The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan, responded to this review, 14 June 2014
Dear Lydia,
I appreciate you taking the time to post your comments on Trip Advisor. I am happy to hear that our Ladies and Gentlemen provided you with attentive service above and beyond your expectations. The hotel has a continued focus on improving and as part of our renovations and we will remodel all our ballroom spaces this fall. Over the next weeks we have plans to update our breakfast buffet to give a more tropical, Island feel to it. I wish you would give us another chance in the future.
Warm regards,
Jackie
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
44 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 June 2014

This Ritz property is great for a quickie luxurious vacation. You get the service you would expect from a Ritz with proximity to the airport that makes it ideal to start your vacation as soon as you land. But when I say, "close to the airport" I mean if it wasn't for a runway and a two-lane road you could walk to this hotel. And that is both a plus and a minus. Being so close to the airport means airport noise. From the beach and the pool it was only somewhat disruptive. You could watch jets take off all day. But if you're on the street-side of the hotel you'll need to scream in to your companion's ear to be heard. It was that loud. We found the front desk and concierge staff to be very gracious. Formal restaurants not as much. They seemed detached, aloof, and generally not very attentive. Just calling it in. The pool-side restaurant where we spent most of our time was great and very accommodating for our 9 year old. As for family travel, this was not the best place. It had a very nice pool but not much else for kids.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 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 A H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NJ
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 June 2014

If you are looking for a “near” Ritz experience @ Marriott prices, this hotel is for you.
My wife and I just completed a five night stay at this property. I am Marriott Platnium (10+ yrs) and have the opportunity to stay in many Marriott and non-Marriott properties every year. With that said, the RC-SJ is not a “Ritz”. It is a nice Marriott, trying to be a Ritz. Don’t get me wrong, it is a good hotel, but far from world-class.
Pros-The staff was wonderful. Form the front desk personnel, to the servers and the pool staff, everyone was very nice. Not over the top nice, but genuine. The doormen and the pool staff were great. The breakfast buffet was very good. The beach area was nice and plenty big. The bathroom in our room was nice. The pool was ok, not great. The gym was nice and well equipped.
Cons-The lobby is very unimpressive. The two rooms we had are in need of a refresh. The property itself is in a dated section of the island, although most of the island (Old San Juan, Condado and Isla Verde) is rather dated. The property itself is condensed between some older buildings and offers very few, if any, spectacular views.
The bottom line is that you never really felt like you were at a “Ritz”. It is clear that this property cannot command a standard “Ritz” rate ($150+ more a night then full service Marriott) which clearly dilutes the overall experience. I will admit, I was attracted to the price-point, but realized quickly that, you get what you pay for. While the staff was mostly comprised of “Ladies and Gentlemen”, they weren’t always serving “Ladies and Gentlemen” as the Ritz Carlton motto states. This was most evident at the pool area, which included a group of foul mouthed, rowdy drunks being served multiple rounds of shots at the pool bar and in my mind was a direct reflection of the price point.
It is my understanding that this property is slated for a $75m overhaul, which is much needed. And while they may be able to spruce up the lobby and the rooms, the less then desirable location and surroundings will not change. However, if they are willing to sell a few less rooms each nights at a higher price point, they may be able to create a “boutique” type environment that would be worth revisiting.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Bob090
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RCSJU, General Manager at The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan, responded to this review, 12 June 2014
Dear Guest,
I appreciate you taking the time to share your experience on Trip Advisor. I am happy to hear that your overall stay went well; unfortunately I hear that you were not very impressed with the overall resort. We are in the continued process to improve our facilities. Last year we renovated our Spa, the Ocean Bar and Grill, the Club Lounge and this fall we will renovate all our Ballroom spaces. Thank you for being a loyal Marriott Platinum member and your feedback is much appreciated.
We will continue working on training to ensure each of our guests has an experience, where we truly follow our philosophy of “Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen”.
I hope to have an opportunity to welcome you back to our “Enchanted Island of Rhythms and Flavors”, an Island with so much to offer. Our concierges are experts and they can guide you to see all the beautiful places in Puerto Rico.
Warm regards,
Jackie
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 June 2014

Just got back from staying at the Ritz & I miss it already. I can't say enough how attentive the staff was here. ALL of the staff, from the doormen to the front desk to housekeeping, everyone!!! Hotel is exteremely close to the airport & suprisingly you don't hear planes like you'd imagine. Property itself is beautiful - great scenery, great pool, & connects to a beautiful beach. I was so worried about selecting the right tours, etc & they had someone on site to assist.

Now my fave part of the hotel: FOOD!!! First off Guillermo in Mares restaurant is by far the best server I've ever encountered & I've dined in many places all around the world. Jeremy makes one hell of an omelet. We had breakfast here daily & you can opt for the buffet or order of the menu, both were equally delicious. Quality options at the buffett & unlimited mimosas! :) I also dined at BLT - a steakhouse, very pricey but great food that was close and convenient.

Overall, I'd definitely come to stay at this property again. There isn't much in the area but a short cab ride (or walk to ESJ) will take you to some action. And lastly, to the housekeeping lady that followed me outside to hand me my iphone 5 - You rock!!!!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank NikkiG510
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newark, Delaware
Level Contributor
57 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 June 2014

This was my second stay at the San Juan Ritz Carlton. Was there for a "girls weekend" - had a great time, didn't leave the resort for three days ! I have nothing but good things to say about this hotel - the service was excellent - they take every opportunity to make you feel special - the pool attendants were great - they always remember your name, where you like to sit and are attentive to your wishes when setting you up for the day. They also send around little treats and water throughout the day poolside, which is another nice touch. The breakfast buffet was delicious and a good bargin for us, as our rate came with breakfast for two every day - so we only had to split the third breakfast -which amounted to @$11.00 each. Breakfast comes with champagne, which you can serve yourself. Our server Guillermo - was awesome - he brought us everything we could need before we knew we needed it. Had dinner at BLT and Il Mulino - both were excellent (BLT was the pricier of the two) and again the "extras" (appetizers/desserts) helped to round out the experiences. FYI - Il Mulino has a Sunset Menu - a 3 course pre-fixe dinner for $43.00 - which was great. Prices at the Ritz are expensive - so be prepared. Our room was nice - we had a partial view of the beach and of the apartments across the street - but it was very quiet. My only "complaint" would be the bath towels/robes in the room weren't up to the usual Ritz luxury level that I've come to expect - they either needed to be replaced or could use some fabric softner to make them "fluffier/softer" - especially after a day in the sun.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a beach or pool view - gives you something nice to look at. Although the city vi...
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Gayle H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brooklyn, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 June 2014

We Stayed at the Ritz Carlton during the Memorial day weekend. It literally was a 15 minute ride from the airport. We arrived very early and they could not have been more accommodating. We were greeted with guava mimosas and big smiles. A special thank you to Jacqueline Torres, Lobby Concierge, who went out of her way to make us feel special. We booked an ocean view room, and my husband was hoping for a balcony. Not only did they check us in early but we were upgraded to a junior suite with a balcony, for a small increase. The room was beautiful, well maintained and very comfortable. The pool was beautiful however we prefer the beach. Drinks and food from the poolside restaurant were great and the wait staff were extremely friendly. As with most Ritz Carlton hotels, the staff is well trained, polite and very warm. We dined at BLT Steak, it was fabulous. We ate at Mares for breakfast and it was fine, however there was lovely woman at the coffee bar. I am a coffee fanatic, she went out of her way to make a great cappuccino for me. On our last night Jacqueline Torres and many of the staff sent us a bottle of champagne and a beautiful card. I must say I was concerned when I had read some not so favorable reviews, and we were already booked. Thankfully I experienced none of what I read. Overall this was a perfect get away. Quick plane ride from NYC, 15 minute ride from the airport to the hotel. The hotel was beautiful and the staff was the best.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank LoisAnneT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan

Property: The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan
Address: 6961 Ave of the Governors, Isla Verde, Carolina 00979, Puerto Rico
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Carolina > Isla Verde
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Isla Verde
#2 Casino Hotel in Isla Verde
#3 Luxury Hotel in Isla Verde
#3 Business Hotel in Isla Verde
#4 Family Hotel in Isla Verde
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Isla Verde
#5 Romantic Hotel in Isla Verde
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan 5*
Number of rooms: 416
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Ritz-Carlton San Juan Hotel Isla Verde
Ritz-Carlton San Juan Hotel, Spa And Casino
Ritz Carlton Carolina
Carolina Ritz Carlton
Ritz Carlton Puerto Rico
Ritz Carolina
The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan Puerto Rico/Isla Verde

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