Okay, I spent a ton of time online before booking my recent summer trip to Puerto Rico. We took the plunge despite some of the negative reviews and booked at El Con. I'm really, really glad I did. The resort had way more positives than it did negatives and I would absolutely, positively come back, even in spite of the negatives.
1)The views. The views from all areas of the hotel are simply stunning. Take a look at some of the pictures on here from other travelers and know the pictures don't even do it justice.
2)The beach at Palomino island. The ride over on the catamaran is pretty fun, but the beach is just pure bliss. My husband enjoyed some great snorkeling on the island. I enjoyed the sand and the quiet. If you move off the part of the beach where the ferry boat lands, and go around the island, it gets even more quiet and amazing. The price of my hotel room was worth it just for the beach.
3)The location of El Con. My ocean view room was amazing. I could see the bio bay & the island's lighthouse from my room. The ocean went on forever. I watched a moonrise one night, and after a small afternoon rainstorm, saw a rainbow over the ocean. Seriously - the stuff of postcards. Additionally, you're walking distance from downtown Las Croabas, where there are a ton of good restaurants off site. If you rent a car (which you absolutely should) you're 20 mins away from El Yunque and an hour away from Old San Juan and all the attractions there.
1)Food is very expensive on resort. To be expected though. If you go to breakfast and only order the continental, watch that they don't try to charge you for the full breakfast - that happened to us more than once. Absolutely, positively go off site for food. Check this and other travel review sites for places to go. Don't let the language barrier intimidate you. It's necessary if you don't want to keep spending $100+ for dinner each night.
2)Drink is very expensive on resort. Suggest going to the closest Walmart or Walgreens (about 5 mins from hotel) and buy some Medallas or Don Q for your room.
3)Parking is expensive, expect if you rent a car you're paying $17 a day to park it.
4)There's an end of the trip room tax they tag you with, mine was about $40 a day. I'm pretty sure it's a local tax, so there's no getting around it. Didn't make it suck less though. Had to remind myself I was on vacation and to just suck it up.
All in all, don't let the negative reviews send you packing. The views and the beach are worth it bar none. If you rent a car and head offsite each night, you'll truly enjoy the island and your trip will be amazing. I will definitely return.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Award-winning oceanfront resort perched atop a cliff, overlooking Caribbean Sea on one side & Atlantic Ocean on the other. Check out the dramatic views, the private island, relaxing spa golf course or the water park - it's all part of this Caribbean paradise. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- El Conquistador Resort, a Waldorf Astoria Hotel Fajardo
- Waldorf Astoria Fajardo
- El Conquistador Hotel Puerto Rico
- Conquistador Hotel Puerto Rico
- El Conquistador Puerto Rico
- El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort Puerto Rico/Fajardo