The Condado Plaza Hilton is a trendy, four-pearl hotel located on a peninsula that juts off San Juan’s Condado district. The hotel’s 572 guest rooms are sophisticated and modern, with elegant (if small) bathrooms and eye-catching artwork. Facilities, which are spread across both sides of the street, include four attractive pools, nine independently owned restaurants and bars, a practical fitness center, tons of meeting spaces, as well as access to an uncrowded beach. But travelers could always compare rates and amenities with La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort, which has a more central location in Condado and a better beach.
Fashionable and fun hotel with tons of activities and dining options
The Condado Plaza Hilton’s entrance doesn’t exactly wow, with guests entering the lobby via a dark, parking garage-like area with a low ceiling. Fortunately, this less-than-stellar first impression is immediately replaced with the hotel’s swanky lobby, where pops of red and orange contrast against bright white floors and walls. There’s a sitting area with modish furniture backed by a huge fish tank, and the illuminated reception desk is anything but bland.
Guest rooms are set in a pair of mid-rise towers located on either side of Avenida Ashford, with a covered walkway over the street connecting the two. Most of the hotel’s amenities are found in the Ocean Tower, including the main pool complex, restaurants, and reception. The Laguna Tower houses the fitness center and business center, along with the lounge pool.
Guests are a mix of couples, families, and business travelers. Strong Wi-Fi and tons of meeting spaces make it a convenient base for business travelers, while the relaxed atmosphere and stylish decor offer plenty of appeal for couples. Large suites plus ample kid-friendly facilities make the hotel an equally good fit for families. While the hotel’s location isn’t terrible, it’s nonetheless the main drawback here.
On a peninsula on the outskirts of the buzzing Condado district
The Condado Plaza Hilton is set in a somewhat isolated location, on a peninsula nestled between Condado Lagoon and the Atlantic Ocean. There’s little of interest in the area immediately around the hotel, but it’s only a 10-minute walk to central Condado, which offers lots of shops, restaurants, and bars. Condado Beach (which is nicer than the hotel’s own strip of sand) is a 15-minute walk away, while the Museum of Contemporary Art can be reached in 20 minutes on foot. The Puerto Rico Convention Center is a five-minute drive away, and it’s a 15-minute drive to Old San Juan. San Juan’s airport can be reached in about 15 minutes by car.
Pleasant rooms offer mini-fridges and coffeemakers
Guest rooms at the Condado Plaza Hilton are tastefully modern, with white tiled floors, dark wood furniture, and platform beds with soft, white linens. Some rooms feature serene blue, yellow, and green color schemes, while others are decorated in bold tones of red and orange. Black-and-white photos of orchids hang on the walls, and wooden wardrobes hold personal safes, mini-fridges, and coffeemakers. Flat-screen TVs and free Wi-Fi are standard. Almost all rooms have private balconies furnished with simple plastic chairs and tables. Some feature lovely ocean views, while others have uninspiring city views.
Sliding frosted glass doors lead to bathrooms that are sleek but small. All bathrooms have walk-in showers and Peter Thomas Roth toiletries, as well as roomy vanities with square sinks. Upper-level room categories have much larger bathrooms, with Ocean Suites also featuring separate whirlpool tubs.
Deluxe Rooms add workstations, while Junior Suites and Ocean Suites have comfy sitting areas. Ocean Suites also feature iHome stations and Nespresso coffee machines. Family Junior Suites include wet bars and microwaves. There’s also a Penthouse Residence Three Bedroom Suite with a full kitchen and room for up to six people.
Four pools including a swim-up bar; nine dining options; and access to a modest beach
The Condado Plaza Hilton’s main pool area features a freeform pool with a swim-up bar, as well as a waterslide set inside a castle-like tower. The hotel has the only saltwater pool on the island, which offers distant views of the ocean across a green lawn. There’s also a kids’ pool with a cute seal fountain sheltered by a tall tree, as well as a capsule-shaped whirlpool. White loungers are found throughout this large pool complex, with neatly-trimmed bushes and palm trees softening the wide deck’s appearance.
The hotel’s fourth pool is located at the Lagoon Tower, where it overlooks the lagoon and city. White loungers are lined on either side of this rectangular pool, shaded by the hotel building on one side and open to the sun on the other. There’s also a separate whirlpool.
The Condado Plaza’s small beach is pleasant enough but it sits on a cove-like inlet instead of the open ocean, with a busy pedestrian bridge bordering the sands on one side. Loungers and umbrellas are provided for guests, and nonmotorized water sports like kayaking, paddle boarding, and snorkeling are included. Massages can be arranged in a compact, open-air treatment area overlooking the coast.
The hotel’s nine restaurants and bars are all independently owned venues. Headed by celebrity chef Wilo Benet, Pikayo is the highlight of the dining options, specializing in fine-dining fusion cuisine. Aqua Bar and Grill offers light meals and snacks by the pool, while Eight Noodle Bar serves up sushi and casual Asian fare. Café Caribe features pizza and pasta, or grab-and-go eats are available at Viaggi. The property also includes a Starbucks and a 24-hour Denny’s. Moon Bar and Eternal Lounge offer drinks and cocktails.
While the hotel’s 24-hour fitness center isn’t particularly big or flashy, it covers a good range of cardio and weight-training equipment, plus free weights, exercise balls, and mats. The fitness center also has a sauna, steam room, and whirlpool. Other work-out facilities include a floodlit tennis court.
There’s a basic kids’ club with some board games, toys, and a TV. Kids can also participate in a self-guided scavenger hunt, called ScoutAbout, with numerous Points of Discovery marked around the resort.
The hotel has over 41,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting spaces. There’s a large, 24-hour business center that offers a handful of cubicles with PCs, along with printers and copy machines. Free Wi-Fi is offered throughout. Valet and self-parking are both available for surcharges.
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