The San Juan Marriott Resort is perfect for families looking for a full-service luxury resort in Puerto Rico. In this full review, you will find out how the San Juan Marriott caters to family travelers with its friendly staff, generous sized rooms, extra amenities, and water activities for kids. Visitors to the property will love the location, as it is conveniently located between the airport and Old San Juan.
Puerto Rico is a perfect family destination because it is easy to travel to from the United States and doesn’t require a passport. Earlier this year when Chicago was covered in snow we were desperate for an escape and Puerto Rico fit the bill. We chose the hotel for several reasons: 1) we had stayed there before, 2) it is centrally located between the main airport (Luis Muñoz Marín) and Old San Juan, 3) it has a great pool for kids and a prime beach location, and 4) there are many restaurants on property and nearby.
What Works for Families at the San Juan Marriott Resort
- Spacious rooms with comfortable beds, some with ocean views
- A private beach with lounge chairs, food and beverage service, and beach toys for the kids
- A relaxing swimming pool with a waterslide, as well as a smaller pool for younger children
- Tour group arrangements on site making it easy for families to plan adventures around the island
- Several on site restaurant options, room service, and a reasonably priced convenience store
- Easy access to the airport and Old San Juan (via bus and taxi service)
- A laundry room, video game room, fitness center, and tennis courts for guests to use
What Doesn’t Work for Families
- The beach does not have enough lifeguards, and while we were there the water was very turbulent. There were many riptide warnings and we even saw a water rescue. The kids were upset they didn’t get to enjoy the ocean as much as they wanted.
- Rooms can be a far walk for kids. The hotel is quite large. Tired kids may be dragging their feet after a long day at the pool or beach and you may end up carrying them back to the room.
- If your family is larger, you will need to book adjoining rooms or a junior suite. This might be cost prohibitive for some families.
- The waterslide was only open until 4pm. If you spend a day out touring and sightseeing and then want to go to the pool, it can be a bummer for kids who want to play on the slide.
The San Juan Marriott Resort is a four diamond, full service property located in the beautiful Condado neighborhood of San Juan, with the ocean on one side and the restaurants and shops of Ashford Avenue on the other.
Higher floors in the Tower Building have ocean views from the balcony, lower ones may look straight into palm trees. This happened to us, but we called the front desk and informed them we had paid for an “ocean view” room and so they quickly addressed the issue. There is also a Cabana Building, where many of the rooms have ocean views. The property features 513 rooms and 12 suites, and I would highly recommend paying for the upgrade to an ocean view room.
The hotel does have a casino on site, but it is separate from the majority of the hotel. I don’t think our kids even realized what it was when they walked past it, because it’s tucked away to the side of the main lobby.
There are daily scheduled activities for the kids such as volleyball and ping pong games poolside as well as cookie baking and decorating. There is a giant chess set for the children to play with as well as board games for them to check out. The daily schedule is located next to the towel hut.
The resort is luxurious, but not pretentious. Guests will feel just as comfortable wandering the property in shorts and flip-flops as they would in sun dresses and suits.
Rooms at San Juan Marriott Resort
We stayed in an ocean view corner room with two queen beds and a sleeper sofa. The beds and pillows were extremely comfortable, the room was spacious and clean, and the balcony was perfect for relaxing. The bathroom had a shower/tub combination and plenty of counter space around the sink for us to spread out our toiletries. All rooms have wi-fi connectivity, coffee makers, mini refrigerators, and flat screen televisions. We had everything we needed for a comfortable stay.
Dining at San Juan Marriott Resort
The hotel has three main sit down restaurants on site: Red Coral Lounge, La Vista Latin Grill & Bar, and Wan Chai Noodle Bar. Unfortunately, we were unable to try any of these because they were packed every night we were there. This was ok because there are many restaurant options within walking distance along Ashford Avenue. In the morning the hotel offers a breakfast buffet at one of the restaurants or take away at the Coffee Merchant and Bake Shop located in the lobby. There is also a Starbucks directly across the street where we ate breakfast several mornings. In the pool area, there is a swim up bar, La Isla Beach Bar, that serves cocktails, and has light food options. We did not eat there, but we certainly enjoyed their adult beverages and friendly service.
The resort is comparably priced to many properties of its size and quality. Price can vary based on location in the hotel and the time of year you visit. If you are looking for a discount, make your reservation early. The hotel also offers bed and breakfast packages for families as well. Note there is a mandatory resort fee of 18% per day added to your bill each day of your stay.
The San Juan Marriott really does make sense when it comes to family accommodation in Puerto Rico. Our family enjoyed our stay and we look forward to returning again in the near future.