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Staying at the El San Juan - New Years Eve restaurant recommendation?

villager21 Nov 6, 2012 02:09 PM

Hi there -

I'll be staying at the El San Juan for New Years this year and am looking for recommendations for dinner. We want dinner to be the main event. What are the top restaurants in the San Juan area (including Old San Juan)?

Open to all cuisines, looking for something relatively upscale so we can dress up for the occasion. Entrees can range anywhere from $20-$40.


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  1. w
    williamsonoma Nov 12, 2012 03:01 PM

    I'm pinning this thread. I'll be in PR for NYE also.

    1. g
      GreekChorus Nov 12, 2012 03:14 PM

      We were in PR two years ago and went to Marmalade in Old San Juan and ordered the five course tasting menu. My husband is vegetarian and I'm not and Marmalade had brilliant menus for us both. Definitely the best meal of an eight day golf vacation.

      2 Replies
      1. re: GreekChorus
        villager21 Nov 26, 2012 09:54 AM

        Thanks! I scooped up a 9:45pm reservation at Marmalade on OpenTable. Their site doesn't say anything about a special menu for New Years Eve so I wonder if they will eventually be doing that.

        1. re: villager21
          williamsonoma Nov 26, 2012 10:12 AM

          I will be there at 7. There was no mention of a special NYE menu when I spoke to them. Assume it will be a la carte regular menu.

      2. phelana Nov 26, 2012 02:26 PM

        Not for NYE but another night, cross the street and eat at Metropole. The stuffed chicken with rice and beans is delish.

        1. w
          williamsonoma Dec 18, 2012 11:21 PM

          what's everyone doing for new years eve?

          3 Replies
          1. re: williamsonoma
            brewco Dec 28, 2012 12:58 AM

            We are traveling with kids in their early 20s and land 12/29. It seems like all of the action is at the hotels for NYE - which are all over $100pp. I hear that there are fireworks in Old Town and Condado, but have been looking all around for the right thing to do. Ideally, we would have a nice dinner then stroll (or cab) over towards Condado, spend a few hours bar hopping or entering a party and watch the fireworks at midnight. Not sure how to make that happen. You?

            1. re: williamsonoma
              GreekChorus Jan 10, 2013 06:10 PM

              So, how was it? How was PR during the holidays? I'm really looking forward to our next trip

              1. re: GreekChorus
                brewco Jan 11, 2013 04:01 PM

                NYE was a blast! Rather than spend a fortune at a hotel, we went for a nice dinner then spent the night at a place called the Mansion at Oceano in Condado - 2 blocks from the La Concha hotel. There was no cover there and drinks were really reasonable by SJ standards. On 3 floors - the first floor had a salsa band and dancing, the 2nd floor had club music and a dance floor and the third floor was open to the elements. They did charge to reserve tables on the first 2 floors, but we found tables on the third floor that were fine, and at midnight were right below the fireworks. At around 2 after dancing on both floors of the Mansion, we went to La Concha to gamble a bit and somehow made it into their party - which was rocking - full of beautiful people and a great band (which stopped pretty quickly after we got there and was replaced with club music). The drinks were expensive, but well worth it for the atmosphere. Judging by the other parties we saw and heard about, we might be tempted to pay the freight and party there for the night. I'd definitely spend another NYE in Condado if I had the chance! We had a fantastic time throughout the Island - we stayed in Isla Verde for 4 nights including NYE, spending a day in old town, a day at Bacardi and some time on the beach and then rented a house near Fajardo on the east coast (called "Casa Gardenia" through HomeAway). There we hiked the rainforest, kayaked the biobay and chartered a sailboat (the "Erin Go Braugh") for a day, saling to a few small islands. If we had more time, we would definitely have taken a ferry to Vieques for the biobay (great places to stay there I hear) and/or Culebra (for the beaches).

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