Puerto Rico TR

Reply

Feb 17th, 2015, 04:14 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,725
Puerto Rico TR

Hello all,
Over New Years, my family of four, mom, dad, and two college aged daughters spent a week in Puerto Rico! We stayed using points at the Marriott Stellaris Hotel located on the Condado in San Juan.
The hotel is a very nice resort hotel. We stayed on the 15th floor in a two queen bedded room. Although were located right by the elevators, I never heard any dings or people in the hall. Our room had a side ocean view, sitting on the balcony gave us the best view. The rooms are comfortable and clean. The baths are relatively new. One thing, there is so much humidity in the air, that the clothes never seemed to dry and even the dry clothes felt damp at times. I think it is just the island's high humidity. The room temps never got really cold, which I like a cooler room so I was always fiddling with the a/c.
The hotel has security that walks the floors and checks on things. I think, just like any island in the caribbean, there is crime, drug crime, but the Marriott does a good job of having security check around to make sure everyone is safe. New Years Eve, there was a ton of security and you couldn't get near the elevators without a wrist band saying you were a guest.
The hotel has a very nice pool area with live music in the afternoons. You can get a drink poolside and beach side. We dined often in the open air oceanfront lunch/dinner place at the Marriott. Food was very good and offered everything from hamburgers to salads to fish sandwiches.
We also attended the hotel's new years eve party. It was expensive, but what isn't on new years. The hotel threw a great party with fantastic salsa music! My husband met one of the band members on the elevator and said we were going to the party and the band leader gave him his band's cd. We listen to it and love it! They offered a few bands that night. I was so impressed with the elderly Spanish couples. They danced all night and were so good! The party had quite the variety of ages and my college kids had fun learning new dances with local girls their age.
The hotel also has a casino. It was fun for a night.

The hotel concierge offers day trips to different activities.
We did :
The bioluminescent kayak tour. They pick you up and take you to the eastern shore of PR, Fajaro area and have the tour all set up. This made it all very easy for us. It was very windy, but we were able to kayak across open water, (I credit my very athletic daughter on my kayak to smoothly getting us across the bay in record time!) to the mangrove trees and out into the quiet bay to experience the illumination. It was very fun and I liked kayaking through the mangroves most of all. It is like going through a long tunnel of trees, ( the kind you would see in a Disney movie). Use bug spray.
We also did the catamaran tour out in the Fajaro area. The Marriott took us by van to the area where we hopped on a very fun catamaran. The weather was windy and the water was choppy, but no one got sick and we actually were taken to a quiet cove area to snorkel. The food was very good that they provided for lunch and the crew was fun!
We also did the horseback riding tour and the Marriott again took us by van. We rode on a ranch near the rainforest. The guides were knowledgeable and the horses very tame. They provided helmets with a hair net (to prevent lice I guess). We enjoyed our trip to the horse farm in the country.
We did a walk around Old San Juan on our own and it is a lovely port city with many shops and also the fort to see.
Restaurants: Since we were at the Marriott, we enjoyed walking to several restaurants. Bar Gitano, which had small plates and I really enjoyed my meal with steak, my husband and one daughter shared a seafood platter. The pizzas looked good as well. They also have entertainment on different nights. The Crepe restaurant next door was great! and reasonably priced. We had dinner there once and dessert twice. The crepes were delicious and it was not pricey at all and very walkable from the Marriott.
Another restaurant we really liked was Oceano. Oceano, we sat outside and had delicious fish dinners. The waitstaff was excellent and I recommend getting a reservation ahead of time!
We ate at Casa Lola which was not that good and it was expensive. I don't mind paying a premium for a good meal, but not happy when the food was just lousy.

Puerto Rico was a fun in the sun destination. The beaches on the Condado were rough, but great boogie boarding waters. Just be careful of the undertow. The food is good and the people were very friendly. I like the area of the Condado because you can really walk around and just walk into restaurants and even to the CVS for some wine and snacks for the room.

Everyone speaks English, but there is that wonderful Latin music and island pulse that makes you feel as if you are in a foreign land! We enjoyed our trip immensely and would return again!
girlonthego is online now  
Reply With Quote
Feb 17th, 2015, 04:34 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,111
Really enjoyed your report. We, too, have enjoyed staying at the Marriott, with its oceanfront location and easy access to so many restaurants within walking distance. We're eager to return. Thanks for posting. Glad you had a nice trip.
tomarkot is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 17th, 2015, 04:44 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 317
Glad you enjoyed your trip. I didn't stay at the Marriott but I went to the casino. They gave you juice and sandwiches . I want to go back so I can do the bio tour and rain forest. Thanks again for the all of the details.
tch912 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 17th, 2015, 07:19 PM
  #4
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
Thanks for the great report. We are going in May and staying at the Marriott Stellaris. Just a couple of questions. Are we able charge food/drinks at the pool to our room? Is their nightly entertainment in the hotel? Glad you had a good trip and was happy with the hotel. We are really looking forward to our trip.
KVR is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 17th, 2015, 07:49 PM
  #5
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,725
Thanks everyone!
KVR: Yes you can charge drinks and food to your room from the pool and from the beach.
There was entertainment on most nights in the lobby lounge. I think one night was quiet. They had usually had some sort of salsa band playing and I liked hearing it as we walked by . We even danced through a few times!

tch, we wished we had done the rainforest as well. Next time I guess.
girlonthego is online now  
Reply With Quote
Feb 17th, 2015, 07:54 PM
  #6
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,725
KVR, there is a cvs and a walgreens one block from the hotel. So, waters, wine, beer, soda, chips, sunscreen, can all be bought on arrival. The marriott has a mini fridge and we did breakfast (yogurts/cereal) in our room as well as snack items.
girlonthego is online now  
Reply With Quote
Feb 18th, 2015, 05:54 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 25,953
So glad you enjoyed your trip!
tom42 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 18th, 2015, 07:30 AM
  #8
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
Thanks so much for the response. We are used to AI vacations, but if we can charge to the room and pay at check out that will be just as good. I went to PR back in the 80's, but DH hasn't. I loved the rainforest then and it's a definite must do this trip. I looked at the bioluminescent bay tour and decided not to. We will also do the catamaran trip. I love to snorkel. We are big on guided tours so I have a few other things planned too.
KVR is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:50 PM.