Clean, updated rooms with a choice of soft or firm pillows
Five-minute walk to Condado Beach
Around the corner from Ventana del Mar Park and nearby shops
A modern lobby with lounge area and business nook
The bathrooms are tiny with inches separating toilet, sink,
Breakfast is served on Styrofoam plates and cups, not very
The location is drab, surrounded by buildings and a parking
The closet doors are difficult to open and need updating
Parking adjacent to the hotel or in a garage for a fee
Breakfast can become crowded and noisy during peaks hours
Check in is a late 4:00 p.m.
Renovated in 2014, the Holiday Inn Express San Juan Condado is a 115-room budget-oriented
chain hotel that caters to tourists and businesspeople, some on extended
stay. While not directly on the beach, the hotel is located in San Juan's
upscale Condado neighborhood, around the corner from luxury shops and
restaurants and just a block from Ventana del Mar Park and the path that leads to Condado Beach. The hotel delivers amenities
expected by the Holiday Inn such as free breakfast and rooms equipped with coffeemakers,
Wi-Fi, and two types of pillow choices. Those looking for a smaller, boutique
experience might consider Casa Condado. You'd be hard-pressed to find a beachfront hotel in Condado in this price range (La Concha is twice the price), though Hosteria Del Mar in Ocean Park often isn't much more expensive.
Located around the corner from Ashford Avenue's big-name luxury shops, this budget chain hotel appeals mainly to businesspeople and vacationers wanting to be close to the beach and lifestyle of Condado.
The Holiday Inn Express is a safe, familiar option for
travelers, many in town on business, spending the night before embarking on a cruise, and those looking to stay close to the
beach and the nightlife of Condado without paying beachfront hotel prices. The 2014 renovation introduced a bright, cheery, and modern style with lime green
chairs and orange accents popping against neutral whitewashed tile floors (made
to look like wood) and furniture, delivering a look that's part corporate, part beach-inspired.
From the street, the entrance to the bunker-like seven-story building is uninspiring, but the lobby
is spacious, offering a sleek front desk, a small concierge desk where guests can book excursions and gather information,
and a lounge that is ideally suited for waiting and meeting. Guests looking to linger outside the rooms seem to prefer the cozier lobby area near the
breakfast room where an oversized flat-screen TV is set to cable news. Also near by is duo of computer stations, offering guests the convenience of printing walking maps or boarding passes.
Glass doors at the back of the dining room open to a courtyard
pool and hot tub, a well-used space by families and guests in the late
afternoon, pre-dinner hours. While there is no restaurant or bar on-site, it's an easy walk to nearby restaurants and cafes, bars, and lounges.
On a nondescript side street, across the street from a gated
building and a parking lot, around the corner from Ashford Avenue's luxury shops such as Cartier and Gucci and the artful Ventana del Mar Park park
that leads to Condado Beach.
Just over the bridge from Old San Juan is the trendy, Miami
Beach-like Condado. The area has a handful of casinos, restaurants, and lounges
that attract a crowd that likes to party but it also delivers an artsy
cosmopolitan vibe. At the Ventana del Mar Park, visitors can take a morning
Zumba class or enjoy live music on some evenings. A small stretch of
restaurants with outdoor dining faces the park and pathways run along the
oceanfront, delivering breezy views of Condado Beach, a stretch of sand that's
ideal for walking or jogging.
Five-minute walk to Condado Beach
10-minute drive to Ocean Park Beach
10-minute drive to the San Juan Cruise Port
15-minute drive to Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport
Modern rooms with cohesive modern color palettes, two pillow choices, working desks, and tiny bathrooms
Brand loyalists know what to expect when checking in at a
Holiday Inn Express. The rooms are equipped with standard amenities such as
flat-screen TVs, work desks with ergonomic chairs, coffeemakers, safes,
mini-refrigerators, and a choice of two types of pillows -- firm and soft.
The hotel's 115 rooms, updated in 2014, come equipped with
either one king or two double beds all finished with three layers of white
sheets and a coordinating color palette that's heavy on the lime green. The floors
are covered in basic ivory ceramic tiles while the walls are painted pale green
and finished with framed panoramic images of the sea in coordinating colors of green,
taupe, and blue. Furnishings include basic
honey-colored wood dressers and tables, lime-green side chairs, white reading
lamps, sheer window treatments, and white leather headboards.
Rooms vary slightly in size and view with the king rooms
offering more space to maneuver than the rooms with two beds, which offer
little space between the side of the bed and the wall. Some rooms on
the first floor look directly onto the street and the waiting cabs, offering
little privacy, while some rooms on the upper floors offer peaks of the sea
through corridors of nearby buildings.
The bathrooms are neatly aligned with single-vanity sinks,
plenty of white towels, and a trio of toiletries. Oversized gray tiles with
strips of glass accent tiles in muted shades of green and taupe give the rooms a
modern look, but they are tiny in size and offer little space between the
toilet and the wall of the shower.
A courtyard pool with a hot tub, a small fitness center, and a busy breakfast buffet
The breakfast at the Holiday Inn Express delivers a variety
of breakfast items from eggs and sausage to bunches of bananas to sugary,
carb-fueled treats such as flavored yogurt, Fruit Loops, and mini pastries, all
which can be washed down with Puerto Rican coffee. Also within reach of
the buffet is a business nook with two computers, and a
small gym with adequate cardio equipment to get in a decent work out. The
courtyard pool, surrounded by a lime green concrete walls, blocks out the
surrounding towering buildings and offers a relaxing spot to sink in the small
hot tub or chill with a book in one of the many lounge chairs.
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