Hotel El Convento

Hotel El Convento
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Address
100 Calle Cristo
Old San Juan
Puerto Rico
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Reviewed by Gary Chandler

Even though Hotel El Convento is not on the beach, no list of San Juan's top hotels is complete without mentioning it. The hotel occupies a 350-year-old former Carmelite convent in an attractive part of Old San Juan. Its present-day splendor is all the more impressive given its history: after 250 years as a nunnery and cloister, the structure served less and less reputable functions, from retail center to dance hall and finally a flophouse. Nearly demolished in 1959 to make room for a parking

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Gateway Town
Closest Airport
Located in the heart of Old San Juan, El Convento, a member of Historic Hotels of America and Small Luxury Hotel's of the World, has set new standards of luxury, comfort and service while preserving the unique character and mystique of the hotel.
A former Carmelite convent built three hundred years ago, El Convento was completely refurbished with special attention given to the preservation of the original structure. Each of the 58 rooms and suites recreates Spain's golden age while the entertainment system, multi-line telephones and modern bathrooms fulfill the needs of today's traveler. Relax by the pool and enjoy the magnificent view from the terrace while you sip a glass of wine. Dining is delicious at El Convento, from the casual patio restaurant, Patio Del Nispero, to the tapas bar, El Picoteo, and Italian dishes at Pizza E Birra, to the regal splendor of the Jose Campeche ballroom where galas are held you will enjoy a true culinary delight.
Designated as Puerto Rico's official guesthouse for visiting heads of state and other dignitaries, the hotel contains sections dating to 1651, when a three-story Carmelite convent opened on the site across from San Juan Cathedral, the Western Hemisphere's oldest. The convent housed nuns for 252 years until closing in 1903. In 1959, the building was converted into a hotel, with two stories added to the original three. Entertainment, government, and social notables made it their San Juan destination. Pablo Casals played his cello in the courtyard.
Under a succession of operators, the hotel fell into disrepair until San Juan investors restored and reopened it in 1997 as a boutique hotel with contemporary amenities. Guests enter on a black-and-white marble floor amid Spanish antiques and tapestries and take an elevator to a third-floor, open-air reception area. Popular with guests wishing to explore Old San Juan, the hotel is also family-friendly, providing children with easy access to the Puerto Rican Children's Museum just outside the entrance. Guests lounge on a rooftop sundeck with potted flowers overlooking Old San Juan, cool off in a plunge pool, soak in a bubbling spa, and work out in an air-conditioned fitness center. After strolls through the old city, the hotel's spacious interior courtyard provides shady respite under a 350-year-old tree. Afternoon wine-and-cheese reception is offered for guests on a third-floor, open-air terrace overlooking San Juan Cathedral.
The well-appointed guest rooms at El Convento reveal their distinctive character and convey the spirit of the Old World with handcrafted furniture, mahogany beams, Andalusian tiles, elegant marble bathrooms, and vistas of Old San Juan and its bay. Other property amenities include: afternoon wine reception every evening (with an array of international wines and cheeses), complimentary Wi Fi internet access in all of our rooms as well as the hotel's air-conditioned library, unlimited complimentary beach club use at a sister hotel, 24-hour concierge service, complimentary newspaper in lobby, bar/lounge, parking (valet), shuttle vans or private vehicle services available, security personnel, complimentary fitness center use with modern equipment, variety of restaurants, conference room, porter, doorman, safe-deposit box, ATM banking, babysitting, dry cleaning service, patio bar, wheelchair accessible. FEES MAY APPLY TO SOME AMENITIES.
**Note - A Mayor Credit Card will be needed at Check-in for incidentals**

Expert Review of Hotel El Convento

Gay and Lesbian Review of Hotel El Convento

By Away Travel Expert : Matt Link
LGBT Expert Favorite
LGBT Expert Rating 5.0 out of 5
Recommended for:
Bisexual,Gay,Lesbian,LGBT Family,Straight-friendly,Transgender
Deep within the cobblestone streets of historic Old San Juan is this gem of a property, a luxurious AAA four-diamond property actually housed in a former convent with sections dating back to 1651. A pastel yellow stucco colonial exterior harbors 58 elegant rooms adorned with rich wooden beams, handcrafted tiles, carved chairs, velvet settees, and antique chests. Opened in 1962, you needn't worry about any nuns when staying here—past guests have included such bohemians as Rita Hayworth,

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