San Juan prides itself on its plentiful clean, comfortable accommodations, and hoteliers, by and large, aim to please. All rooms are now no-smoking. Big hotels and resorts, several with casinos, and a few smaller establishments line the sandy strands along Condado and Isla Verde. If you want to do little but relax on the beach, enjoy ample resort amenities, and partake in lively nightlife, either
is a good option. Between these two neighborhoods, the Ocean Park area has homey inns, as do the districts of Miramar and Santurce, although the latter two areas aren't directly on the beach. Independent travelers, artistic types, and anyone who wants to stay a little bit off the beaten tourist track might prefer these areas. Old San Juan has fewer lodging options, one of which has a casino, but most of the city's best boutique hotels are here. If you’re a history or architecture buff or looking for a unique romantic experience, definitely stay in one of these colonial inns; many of the structures date back several hundred years, and will make you feel as if you’ve been transported to another era, even though most have flat-screen televisions and Wi-Fi. (Also consider the Old City if you’re in town for a cruise, since the ports are within walking distance.) Keep in mind, though, that these buildings are old, and Puerto Rico has a tropical climate, so minor inconveniences like room mustiness or ongoing repairs might be possible.
Staying in a self-catering apartment or condo has advantages over a resort, especially for families. You can cook when and what you want, and you can enjoy considerable autonomy. Several companies represent such properties in San Juan. When booking, be sure to ask about maid service, swimming pools, and any other amenities that are important to you.