Puerto Rico Hotel Guide
Throughout Puerto Rico the accommodations range from grungy to luxurious with the prices to match. The higher-end hotels will ensure you have air conditioning and cable TV, while the most discounted places don't guarantee a private bathroom. For a more rustic feel, several experts suggest you stay in one of Puerto Rico's paradores, the small independently run inns located close to (but not on) the beach. Though sites like Concierge.com warn that you might sacrifice top-notch quality service, these rural inns are government sponsored, with fixed rates even in the peak travel season. Most recommend looking for paradores on Puerto Rico's west coast.
- Most options are guesthouses, inns, hotels and paradores (midrange to high-end hotels that get regular surprise visits from the tourism board). … Rentals are a good idea for long-term guests or big groups." -- Lonely Planet
- Puerto Rico has a wide range of accommodation options, from rustic mountain cottages to fancy beachfront high-rises. … For lower prices, you'll have to settle for a fan and share a shower in typically basic and dingy surroundings." -- Rough Guides
- A single room [in a paradore] usually runs about $50-75 and the PRTC dictates that rates cannot change by season, making west coast paradores an excellent bargain during summer months (the high season on that part of the island." -- Let's Go Puerto Rico
Although there are hotels all around Puerto Rico, travel writers agree that staying in San Juan guarantees you'll be in the thick of it all. Within San Juan, many say the best lodging is near the Condado and Isla Verde beaches. Several of the area's resorts feature casinos on the premises. If you want more of an urban experience, book a room amid the shopping, sightseeing and dining of Old San Juan.
- Beach-bordered Isla Verde is closer to the airport than the Condado and Old San Juan. The hotels here are farther from Old San Juan than those in Miramar, Condado, and Ocean Park. It's a good choice if you don't mind the isolation and want to be near fairly good beaches." -- Frommer's
- If you want easy access to shopping, dining and nightlife, then you should stay in San Juan, which also has decent -- though by no means the island's best -- beaches." -- Fodor's
The more secluded lodging in the western town of Rincón is popular with couples and surfers looking to while away the winters riding near-perfect waves. Here, you'll find a small assortment of high-price resorts and über-cheap inns.
- Rincón Surf & Board … It's a favorite haunt of the 'surf trolls' who show up to ride the waves all winter and the guesthouse offers 10 to 15% discounts if you stay a week or more." -- Lonely Planet
Culebra & Vieques
For a more remote feel, some travel writers suggest leaving the main island for either Culebra or Vieques. Both islands are smaller than Puerto Rico (main island) and are known for their calm waters good for snorkeling and scuba diving. These islands don't offer as many accommodation options, so if you want to stay here make sure to book well in advance.
- To reach the islands, catch the ferry or a plane from San Juan or Fajardo. Públicos meet you at the airport and ferry dock (posted rates US$2-5, but some drivers will try to overcharge you, ask the price first), or let your hotel/guest house arrange transport for you." -- Footprint Travel Guides: Caribbean
- Bananas is Esperanza's original cheap guesthouse/restaurant and it's a classic, in the mold of a backpacker's hostel in Thailand or a beach bar in Jamaica. … Great prices, a lively downstairs bar; a funky and relaxed atmosphere; and basic but adequate rooms that receive the odd nightly visitor from the insect kingdom." -- Lonely Planet
Plan Your Trip to Puerto Rico