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Wayne Piersanti May 17th, 2002 02:08 PM

Normandie Hotel in San Juan
Our holiday club has a destination at the Normandie on Muniz Rivera and Calle Rosales. Is that in "old San Juan". we like restaurants, jazz, salsa music, museums. Does anyone know if this location is near any of the things we like to do? We also love the beach-How is the pool/beach? we are going in november. Thanks-Wayne

Ronnie May 17th, 2002 02:28 PM

It's right after the Condado, after you cross the bridge going towards Old San Juan. It's the one that looks like a ship. Recently restored, piece of PR history, a graceful old lady!<BR>Ronnie

Wayne Piersanti May 17th, 2002 02:37 PM

Dear Ron, we have never been to Puerto Rico. i just found out that the Normandie is a Radisson, so it should be pretty nice. I assume from that location we should find lots of museums, restaurants, nightlife? do you like that area? Wayne

Ronnie May 17th, 2002 04:40 PM

Sorry Wayne, did not realize! It's pretty much centrally located to all sorts of activity. You should have no problem!Old San Juan is about 5 minutes away, i in itself is a museum! El Morro castle is woth a visit. Lots of restaurants in the Condado section, which is the other way away from the hotel. So, you have Old San Juan on one side and the Condado on the other.Just as many restarants in Old San Juan too! The same goes for casinos.<BR>Ronnie

???? May 17th, 2002 05:29 PM

but think that they share the Hilton beach. Could be wrong but don't thnk that they have one of their own. The last time we were near there it was still closed and undergoing renovations and it is a really neat building. Supposed to resemble a cruise ship hence the name, I understand.

rqf May 17th, 2002 07:09 PM

10 minutes from OSJ and five minutes from the Condado. Beach is small and not ver ygood. Pool is quite small. They do not share a beach with the Caribe Hilton. A chain link fence separates the two hotels.

Emily May 19th, 2002 12:12 PM

Yipes Wayne. We stayed here 4 years ago and it was awful. The rooms were shabby and service was terrible. Worse of all, the pool is tiny and it was filthy, the beach was chock full of dirty diapers and broken glass. I hope that it's not too late for you to change your location. I hate to be negative, but maybe this will spare you a lousy time.

ss May 20th, 2002 04:51 AM

The location is fine but if you intend to swim and sun the hotel is a poor choice. The pool is very small - the size is what you expect to find at a low price motel. Also the beach is not good at all - small and poor quality sand. You might consider a hotel in either the Condado or Isla Verde. A good hotel, on the beach, in the Condado is the Marriot. There are three good hotels on the beach in Isla Verde. Two, El San Juan and the Ritz Carlton are expensive. The Intercontinental would be less expensive than the other two.

emily May 21st, 2002 04:49 AM

Dear Emily, many thanks to you and others. we did not realize the situation concerning the beach and/or pool and my wife and I are both beachgoers. You and several others have saved us from what could have been a mistake of time and money! We still would like to go the Puerto Rico, but will look for something more our style. Wayne

kt May 21st, 2002 10:38 AM

I think you may want to look into the Caribe Hilton. It is next to the Normandie, but they have built the only private beach in PR by building it themselves. Both properties are close to Old San Juan, so if you're interested in the cultural sights, restaurants, museums and shopping but also want to go to the beach- that would be my pick. <BR><BR>If beach isn't so important, go with the Wyndham Old San Juan or the El Convento, both very nice Old San Juan properties. <BR><BR>If the beach takes precedence, I like the Water Club in Isla Verde or one of the mega-resorts like El San Juan. <BR><BR>Have a cuba libre and some mofongo for me!<BR><BR>KT

xx May 21st, 2002 01:03 PM

KT: The beach at the Hilton is not private. It is public like every other beach in PR. This was ruled on by the Supreme Court of PR sometime in the 90's. But in a sense it is "private" in that you have to swim in to gain access if you are not a guest of the hotel. There is no other public access and so far as I know the ruling did not specify that public access from the land side had to be provided.

sharon May 22nd, 2002 02:31 PM

Just returned from PR. Stayed at the Caribe Hilton. I was there for a convention and had written in to this forum before going. The reviews weren't that good. The result was that I was very pleasantly surprised by the pool areas and beach of the Caribe. (I thought the hotel was very nice as well.) It's not like other Caribbean beaches in any way, but it is very nice in its own way. Easy to find a relatively isolated spot on the stretch nearest the Normandie. (We had a drink in the bar there. Thought it was unfriendly and not island like.)The Hilton has constructed a sea wall so that you can swim in the ocean with no 'fear'. One of my lasting memories is our 7:00 a.m. swims (in the pools)with no one else around. And I'm NOT a morning person. I had one of the best spa experiences ever. I definitely recommend that. It's very inexpensive to cab to OSJ. We went every evening and just wandered. The Parrot Club is a great restaurant in OSJ with live jazz and a terrific atmosphere and food. We loved it.

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