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Hosteria Del Mar 3.0

Ocean Park, San Juan, Puerto Rico

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Gorgeous beachfront location on Ocean Park Beach
  • Laid-back restaurant, bar, and lounge on-site all facing the ocean
  • Breezy rooms with cool-hued beachy decor, minibars, and flat-screen TVs
  • Some rooms have balconies with ocean views and the sound of crashing waves
  • Beachfront bar has daily happy hour specials
  • Ocean Park Beach, known for onshore winds, is popular for kiteboarding and wind surfing
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout

Cons

  • Built in the 1970s and is showing its age in places
  • Some rooms open directly onto the terrace of the restaurant
  • Music from the lounge can be heard in some rooms
  • Hallways are narrow and dark
  • No on-site parking 
  • Rooms in the back of the property are small and lack ocean views

Bottom Line

This hotel has reopened following the impact of Hurricane Maria in September 2017. Travelers should note that the island wassignificantly impacted by the storm. The 23-room Hosteria Del Mar is a laid-back, mid-range boutique property with direct beach access located in the upscale residential enclave of Ocean Park. Guests have easy access to a one-mile stretch of golden sand that's popular with locals and kite boarders. The low-slung property mixes artifacts from the owner's travels to Morocco, Thailand, and the Mediterranean with casual, beach-inspired style. The property's restaurant, bar, and lounge all face the ocean and some rooms also offer sea views from their balconies. Despite its stellar beachfront location, the 30-year-old property shows signs of aging and lacks the resort-style amenities found at larger hotels such as La Concha in Condado or the Courtyard by Marriott in Isla Verde. 

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Scene

An off-the-beaten-track beachfront boutique with the atmosphere of a casual, quirky retreat

This established 30-year-old property was once a private home before becoming a hotel. Located in the quiet residential area of Ocean Park, the mid-range Hosteria del Mar sits behind a white decorative concrete wall shaded by a canopy of mature trees. The entrance immediately announces the hotel's Zen-like vibe -- a narrow bridge crosses a stone-bottomed pool with a rain-shower waterfall; a bench invites guests to sit; and a carved Thai figurine hangs on the wall, one of many items collected by the hotel's owner during her travels. Inside, the small lobby is wrapped in shiny wood paneling. An arrangement of rattan chairs and an intricately carved wooden bench topped with tangerine cushions is set on a sea-grass rug. Azucena flowers (a strongly fragrant flower popular in Puerto Rico) are arranged in a tall vase and an ornate gold mirror masks the paneling and flooring that hints at the building's 1970s birth.

The lobby opens directly into the property's restaurant, Uvva, a breezy space with vaulted ceilings, white marble-topped tables, and dark wood shutters tilted at open angles to reveal peeks of the aquamarine water of the sea. A curvy bamboo-fronted bar is decorated with colorful glass lanterns from Morocco. The outdoor bar and terrace has a stretch of wooden deck built around trees and is outfitted with silver tables and blue chairs set with simple vases of flowers. The sounds of crashing waves and the breeze make the deck an enticing spot for lunch or cocktails. In the evenings, the hotel's lounge, a tent-like space with a bar and beachy furnishings covered in bright blue and green striped fabric, turns up a selection of relaxed music. Guests are drawn here for the laid-back, slightly unkempt, beachy vibe that allows visitors to mingle with locals and take leisurely walks on the beach. 

Location

On the beach in Ocean Park, about a 10-minute drive to the San Juan International Airport

Set between Condado Beach to the west and Isla Verde to the east, Ocean Park is a tranquil residential area with tree-lined streets and a beautiful stretch of golden sand. Formerly a private residence, this hotel is set in a particularly peaceful location with direct and easy beach access. 

  • 10-minute drive to the San Juan International Airport
  • 12-minute drive to Condado Beach
  • 20-minute drive to Old San Juan
  • 35-minute drive to El Yunque National Forest
  • One-hour drive to the Fajardo Ferry Terminal
  • Two-hour drive to Rincon

Rooms

A selection of recently renovated rooms with beach-cottage style facing the ocean or the interior courtyard

This hotel features three categories of rooms distinguished primarily by the view. The Interior rooms, located in the courtyard at the rear of the property, are the smallest (161 square feet) and come equipped with either one double or single bed. The hotel's Ocean View rooms feature either one king or two double beds and are much larger (323 square feet), offering views of the sea from balconies and terraces. There's also an apartment for longer stays.

The rooms underwent a recent renovation, upgrading the decor to a casual, beach-inspired style. Some rooms offer king-size beds with tufted ivory headboards and matching slipper chairs while other rooms are furnished with more traditional style wood furnishings plus simple headboards and armoires and a color palette of taupe and sea-glass blue. Floors are finished in terra-cotta tiles while the walls are white and hung with canvas artwork that depicts beach scenes or wood-framed prints of flowers. 

Flat-screen TVs are hidden in armoires or mounted on the walls, and minibars with soda, water, and wine are set on floral trays or stocked in mini-fridges. The bathrooms have white-tiled single vanities and shower/tub combos lined with decorative shower curtains in floral and striped patterns. The ocean-facing rooms have small terraces with a table and two chairs, ideal perches for watching the waves and kite boarders.

Features

Three bars, a restaurant, and a laid-back lounge all within a few steps of Ocean Park Beach

The lounge at Hosteria del Mar exudes a beachy, surfer style designed to make guests feel at ease. Chill music sets the tone in the tent-like space with concrete floors built around existing palm and almond trees. Tables and chairs are scattered around and there are also plenty of chaise loungers, daybeds, and sofas finished in peppy lime-green and blue stripes to entice guests to sink in and relax, cocktail in hand, while listening to the crashing surf. The property also has a full-service restaurant and a terrace bar that holds daily happy hour specials. Wi-Fi is free throughout. 

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Address

1 Tapia St, Ocean Park, San Juan 00911, Caribbean

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