17 Replies Latest reply: Feb 19, 2017 3:32 PM by nitelite RSS

TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??

nismoztuner Platinum
Currently Being Moderated

Hello,

 

My GF and I are planing on a trip to San Juan, Puerto Rico during September (15-24) for our one year anniversary, 2 years ago i went with a buddy to PR and we stayed at ritz and i loved it there. The employees were very friendly and nice, somehow i was impressed that they knew our names even tho we didn't really talk to them much.

 

Okay... so i have been thinking where to stay at, my two options are Ritz Carlton or La Concha- my first pick was Ritz but I felt like i should try something new thats when I found La concha. At La Concha I was going to get a Jr suite but yesterday when i was ready to book the trip all the Jr suites were taken, I was also reading that La Concha is kind of noisy and that the employees there arent that good with customer service. I was going to get a cheap room and just hope for an upgrade but I have been roaming around forums and others are saying that its not that easy getting any upgrade from them- that just made me lean more towards Ritz again.

 

Last year i went to Hawaii and stayed at the Waikiki Marriott- I was a silver elite back then but they sure knew how to spoil me- the elite lady who helped me upgraded my basic room from floor 5 to floor 30 that was facing diamond head with partial ocean view, she also gave me free coffee cards to use at a coffee shop in the hotel(**** load of them), and  breakfast (28 value) free!! but had to pay for my GF meal ** Im sure that upgrade was a good $600+ (8 day stay..)

 

A month ago i was approved for the Ritz Carlton CC and remembered that i have 3 club level upgrade certificates-  I have been trying to read more about them, but to me it seems like its just a lounge with free food and drinks.. hopefully im wrong


If i book my trip and stay with ritz and also use those certificates...

Does my room get upgraded?

What is Club Level?

Has any one stayed at SJ Ritz using the upgrades/ Club Level??

what do you guys recommend?


Another thing that I found out about the SJ,PR Ritz earlier today is that during our trip the pool will be closed... My trip dates Sept 15-24th

  • Renovation Information – Kindly note-To ensure a luxurious experience, the pool will be closed for resurfacing September 6-October 20 2016, however, guests can enjoy a range of upgraded beach activities.

 

Thanks!!

(For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

Location Brand Hotel
San Juan, Puerto Rico Renaissance Hotels La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort
Ritz Carlton- San Juan
  • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
    iahflyr Platinum 26 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated

    Never having been to either property your last paragraph would be a deal breaker for me.  No pool no stay!

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
    clebert Platinum 21 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated

    I stayed at Vanderbilt Condado which is right next to La Concha.  Didn't love the beach there, but it was ok.  Better beaches elsewhere in Puerto Rico.  But Condado has good shopping, restaurants, and nightlife.  I'd call the Ritz and ask about the club level and certificates.  One of the RCs in Puerto Rico is a Reserve and I don't think it allows use of those certificates, but I could be wrong!

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

    • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
      nismoztuner Platinum
      Currently Being Moderated

      I have been reading about the bad beach at La concha, Im leaning towards Ritz right now. I was checking the prices now and the price bumped up $200 more to stay at La Concha- the only issue i have with Ritz is the pool will be closed all September.

       

      Im going to call ritz later and ask them if i can use the certificates. I talked to my friend yesterday who i went with 2 years ago- he told me that he booked the cheapest room ritz had, once we got to ritz they upgraded him to pool view, BUT there isnt going to be a working pool to view (hahhahaha). I also asked him about the upgrade certificates and he told me that he wasnt able to use them because the Ritz phone rep kept having issues. 

       

      (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

      • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
        clebert Platinum 21 Reviews
        Currently Being Moderated

        Here are some pics of La Concha in case it helps you determine if you like the beach area.  It's not a bad beach, but it's not that light blue calm Caribbean beach you can find elsewhere in the Caribbean (including some parts of PR).

        2015-09-16 14.48.24.jpg2015-09-16 14.47.38.jpg

        (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

        • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
          clebert Platinum 21 Reviews
          Currently Being Moderated

          The beach pic above is right along La Concha, and you can see the Marriott Stellaris in the background.  Also you can see some of the run down, shelled out concrete buildings along the Condado beach area.  The beach area is very urban with lots of high rise condos and hotels along the strip and some very sketchy looking areas mixed in with the nice hotels.  It's not secluded and didn't feel particularly relaxing to me, but it's great if you want to be in the middle of the action for shopping, nightlife, etc.  The weather can be bad during hurricane season (June through Nov) so buy trip insurance.  I was there in Sept and got the gray ugly weather you see in the pics.  It was hot and muggy.  I was also there end of April and got gray skies on the main island but sun on the outer islands.

          (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
    702rugbyref Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Never been to Ritz in PR.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
    jorgeh Silver
    Currently Being Moderated

    I really like the Ritz Carlton.  Used to work their back in the late 90's.  And yes, we memorized guests names as a sign of respect, show of friendship, and welcoming to our hotel, beautiful people, and island.  I hope you can switch dates so you and your GF can enjoy the pool.  Since the Ritz Carlton is part of the Marriott chain, you can try to see if they are willing to let you use the Stellaris swimming pool as a courtesy...  But, I rather go to the the beach instead and enjoy it...  .  Last time I was in PR was for a wedding at La Concha Hotel few years ago and the service can NOT be compared to the San Juan Marriott and the Ritz Carlton...  Just saying!!!  Have fun in PR and Happy Anniversary!  Cheers!

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
    nismoztuner Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    @ Clebert  Thanks for the photos!

    @ Jorgeh Ritz has my vote when it comes to customer service in the hotel- its awesome!

    -----

    I called Ritz to have my reservation upgraded to club level but was told that there arent any more spots for club level. the first rep when i called wasnt being helpful and kept telling me that i am not able to use the upgrade certificates in San Juan. Then hours later (felt bugged) i called again and a rep that was more helpful told me that i can use them in san juan but not the reserve. but either way all club level spots were taken for my dates.


    ----

    Most people are telling me to go it Ritz carton, and im going to go with ritz... now my only issue left is how to book my trip.

    --


    My booking options:

    Booking Direct

    Ritz $2,219.72

    Airline $ 1,043.60

    Total - $3263.32

    Pros- get Marriott points and nights

    Cons- too expensive compared to Expedia and even Vacations by Marriott

    ---

    Booking with Expedia

    Airline and hotel (ritz)

    Total $2632.53


    Pro- Super cheap compared to Marriott and Vacations by Marriott

    Con- no credit for nights nor much points.. but will get some points with my Ritz Card 


    -----

    Booking with Vacations by Marriott

    Ritz and airline

    Total- 2890.15


    Pros- 5,000 booking points (nothing more)

    cons- Expedia is cheaper

    ************

    What do you guys suggest?



    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
    nismoztuner Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    I have been to PR twice, the first time my buddy and I rented a car. while we did have the car, the hotel charge for parking was not cheap. Also, the drivers there arent the best and even the police doesn't do anything (depending on the officer).

    so the 2nd time i went was with my GF (like the post), during this time UBER was launched at the island. I made plans to only use UBER while there but days later it was shut down due to the taxi people being too violent.

    so days before leaving California i found out that uber was relaunched due to the taxi people and uber coming up with an agreement. so back to my plans with uber.

    when i got there had no option but to get a taxi since uber is not allowed to pick up at the airport ONLY drop off. ($15-20 from the airport to Ritz Carlton on a taxi NOT CHEAP). unless you manage to have the Uber driver pick you up somewhere outside the airport, then when the driver calls you just let him/her know where you are inside the airport. JUST pretend to know each other if taxi people are there.

    ***not sure how the uber taxi thing in PR is right now***

    so while in PR My GF and I would request Uber from Ritz to take us anywhere we wanted which was cheap compared to renting the car (hotel parking fee, car fee, gas insurance fee,looking for parking). I ended up going with uber and use the parking fee to use uber

    instead. all the uber drivers that helped us were very friendly and very helpful to the point where on day i forgot my phone on the back seat of one of them. I freaked out when i noticed my phone was missing. so i called uber and then uber had the driver contact me on my Gf phone. i told him how i had left my phone on his back seat. he told me that he was going to look for it (he found it under the seat) then he said that he will go back to where he dropped us off to give me the phone but that first he had to pick up another client. so while waiting for him my Gf and i started to walk around to kill time but then got busy. we headed back after a while and noticed that a car was driving slow (it was him) he gave me back my phone and told me had been looking for us for the past 20 minutes and even walked around for a bit. I tried to give him money as appreciation but he would not take it. he said " youre in my homeland youre visiting please enjoy your stay here in Puerto Rico and use that money to have fun, it was no issue for me to bring back the phone besides that i like to work for my money".. I say go with uber!  

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: TRIP TO SJ PUERTO RICO- Stay at Ritz Carlton(Club Level) or La Concha??
    nitelite Gold
    Currently Being Moderated

    Just came back from San Juan Puerto Rico stayed at the Ritz Carlton nice hotel nice pool great people gave me no benefits for being gold had two drinks by the pool  $40 total a whole hotel nickels and dimes and $40 a day basically for a resort fee $50 on the last day again nice but never will stay there again just to costly for what you get. Used uber everywhere just leave hotel property taxis twice different price to same place another rip off

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

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