We planned a short trip to Puerto rico, and got a good deal with Gran melia resort. Resort was amazing in terms of location and amenities, but cleanliness of the room was alright when we checked in. We had to call the room service in order to get
the room service and the towels were provided only after we requested. Some of staff were very polite and helped us out well but few of them rude when we asked about the directions. There is a parking fee of $15 per night if you plan on renting a car, which we felt outrageous since the resort is located remote from the airport, but overall experience was nice and relaxing.
I went to the Gran Melia with my wife over New Years. We had some good experiences and some bad impressions.
The good: it was absolutely beautiful with stunning views. I think that the rooms were nice for what we were looking for. We didn't need
an amazing room because we wanted to be at the beach and the pool most of the time. The food was great. We ate on site a couple of nights and the food was worth it. The paella from the restaurant Passion was one of the best meals ever.
The bad: bring your credit card. The food and drinks are EXPENSIVE. I live in downtown Chicago and the prices for drinks were exorbitant even compared to city prices. I would suggest bringing a bottle of booze or wine if you plan on drinking a lot at the resort. We ended up buying a bottle while in San Juan and it was worth it. The drinks that were poured weren't that strong to even justify the prices.
-If you are looking to go into San Juan, try to find another couple to share a taxi. It is $80 each way. We ended up sharing taxis and it worked out quite well.
-The beach was not that swimmer friendly. A lot of seaweed and very rocky. We heard that the Wyndham nearby had a much better beach and it might be worth it to take a quick taxi over there.
-There were not enough workers for the size of the place considering how busy the place was. We called the front desk for a simple request and we needed to call back an hour later to check on our request. The lady at the front desk said she would call back to give me an update. The call never took place and our request was never fulfilled. More annoying than anything.
Overall, we would recommend the resort because we did have a wonderful time.
Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Ask the concierge to call the Salty Dog if you are looking for a catamaran tour. The trip was so fun and the price was around $80 per person compared to the $180 the concierge book advertised. When I asked them what the difference was between the two, they said there wasn't any difference, the other company they call was more expensive.
My best friend and I loved this place. We had a fabulous time enjoying the resort but also the local hangouts and the rainforest near by. The pool is amazing and there are a lot of quite little beach spots along hotel property.
The grounds are beautiful (and large) but the staff isn't too swift. We spent a lot of time at the hotel desk discussing our complaints (room, location, charges, etc.). They were courteous but took much longer than humanly necessary to address and
resolve our issues correctly.
After reading all the reviews I did, I was initially scared but when we arrived ( Wife and I 1 Year anniversary), all the worry was mostly gone. The view, landscaping, and hotel were AMAZING. Sights were just inbelievable. I checked in in the Red
Level Lounge and got served with complimentary drinks right there before i was golf carted away on a tour of the grounds and to my room. The Butler service and staff definitly made the trip that much more. Staff was VERY friendly and always ready to give a hand unlike the other reviews stated. Again, this was OFF season so not many guest. Rooms were clean and ready when we arrived and staff kept up on it every day I was there. The only two things I found bad were the lack of beach which was just sand and rocks which bordered the water to protect from hurricanes and flooding AND food on site. The price of food was very expensive and honestly, lack of choices.There was an "authentic" PR, Asain, and Italian restaurant on site. Breakfast was standard continental buffet style. Nothing over the top. $22 per person. Drinks were also expensive and served in small cups. I recommend renting a car and doing some site seeing and outside eating.
Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Short drive from hotel
Go to Richie's Restaurant and enjoy the view. You will not regret it! Food was also GREAT.
When we checked in they didn't have our hotel room so we were upgraded to a Red Level Ocean Front room. This was a major plus. They said the hotel was sold out. Nothing about the hotel seemed sold out. Plenty of lounge chairs, no problem getting
dinner reservations, so who knows.
I would suggest the Red Level if you have extra money, the included breakfast, cocktail hour, and private pool are very nice. Another plus is the ocean, pool, and room were all very close to each other. We were .15 miles from the front desk and restaurants.
The resort is very isolated and not a good location to see the sights. Additionally the beach is a red flag no swim beach. I went in the water anyway, but the currents are strange and there is a lot of coral and seeweed. As a swimmer I was disappointed in the ocean access.
The food on the resort is expensive. The breakfast buffet is 22 dollars a person before tax and tip. The lunch buffet is 25 dollars before tax and tip. Dinner ran us about 100 dollars a night for two people. Drinks by the pool are around $12. Restaurants are okay. I would suggest against the lunch buffet. We were told by the staff to try it and I was disapointed. The pool bar serves sandwiches which was cheaper and tasted better. While we didn't rent a car, I would suggest it if you can get a good deal. It would give you freedom to try out other restaurants and buy liquor and snacks off site.
Overall there is nothing "wrong" with the resort but I wouldn't stay again. My experience is all inclusive are cheaper and better.