After two back-to-back hurricanes, San Juan, Puerto Rico, is ready for visitors. Once you book your flight, the next step is finding the ideal place to stay — hotel options in the capital city are endless and range from boutique beauties to sprawling beach accommodations. Here are some of our favorites.
For Excellent Nightlife
One of our favorite neighborhoods in San Juan is Condando. It feels a little bit like Miami, a touch Cuban, and features all of our favorite things about San Juan. The Condado Vanderbilt Hotel is a Spanish Revival stunner, built in 1919, stacked with modern interiors. Guests will be hard-pressed to find reason to leave the property: There's an adults-only and a large family pool, multiple eateries, a gorgeous bar, and a world-class spa. But when you do venture out, the neighborhood is brimming with fantastic restaurants, nightlife, and a beach—all at your fingertips. Plus, it's an easy bike ride to Old San Juan (bikes are complimentary with stay).
We found rates starting at just $160 per night for a Heritage Queen room on a weeknight in August.
For the Ultimate Old San Juan Experience
You can't go to San Juan without visiting its charming historic district. Here, you'll find loads of cruisers who stop for the day to sip mojitos and buy souvenirs. But for those who can stay a night or two, Old San Juan is truly a gem, and it's worth exploring every nook and cranny. Stay at the Hotel El Convento, housed in a former convent, built in the 1600s. The hotel maintains its historic charm (the original structure remains intact on the first two levels) and the rooms boast charming checkered flooring, antique furnishings, and balconies. Don't leave without enjoying a cocktail in the courtyard and a swim in the rooftop plunge pool. Bonus: There's a complimentary wine-and-cheese happy hour daily.
We found that weekday rates consistently hover around $180 through October.
For Proximity to the Beach
The beaches in San Juan are beautiful, which is rare for a major city. One of the finest is Isla Verde, known for its warm waters and gentle waves. The Courtyard Marriott Isla Verde Beach Resort, located in the heart of the district, is the kind of property that comes to mind when you picture a classic beach vacation. Set alongside the ocean, the hotel features all the trappings of an island getaway: a swim-up bar, hammocks dotting the sand, and beach-chic decor. The oceanfront restaurant not only has pinch-me views, but it serves high-quality seaside fare that goes beyond the standard burger and fries. And for those who like to gamble (another reason many come to San Juan), this Courtyard has a casino.
Rates run about $350 per night.