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Get me out of that San Juan Caribe Hilton

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I will be in San Juan for three nights this weekend. Most of my events are all planned out but I always find when staying at some big resort that the food is strikingly expensive and completely mediocre. I am wondering if there is a place to get a nice evening snack nearby as I will be dining late. Also is there a place off campus for lunch. I usually like a fancy meal here and there but I want non-fancy. I don't want the 20 dollar hotel lunch but would love a Cuban sandwich or some plate lunch. Is anything within walking distance or at least a quick taxi ride away? And, if I wanted to skip the breakfast buffet one morning and just get coffee and a pastry, is there anything close to the hotel? I hate to be totally stuck there.

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  1. We stayed at the Caribe in Feb/13 - it's kind of isolated. There is a Subway sandwich shop right outside the main gate if you're desperate. Actually, it's not that bad for a quick and cheap lunch. That's about the only dining option within walking distance.

    Or...take a taxi to Old San Juan and go to Café Puerto Rico for a 'local' lunch and another taxi for coffee and pastry at Hacienda San Pedro. I recall that there was a Starbucks in the hotel lobby.

    1. Get in a taxi and head to Old San Juan for sure. Sorry but Subway? I'd rather starve..lol..

      I used to go to OSJ 8 times a year but have not been back in a few years so defer to others to chime in with more recent updates.

      2 Replies
      1. re: phelana

        I disagree about subway - just get the vegetables on a whole grain roll - worked for us on our trip to the Grand Canyon and San Juan -

        1. re: phelana

          Phelana, I agree. I lived in Old San Juan and there are lots of wonderful places there, I actually worked at Barrachina's which has great pina coladas. I can't believe we are talking about Subway and Starbucks on this board, crazy!

        2. Kasalta is probably the closest but on your way back to the airport, try España (on the south side of the road in Isla Verde...the cabbies will know it). The Cubanos and Media Noches are the best as is the octopus salad and Caldo Gallego (a chicken soup of sorts). All of the pastries look great but not as sweet or moist as they look. You can sit down and eat or take food with you. Cubanos are $8.50 and Media Noches $7.50. Lots of good eats and drinks.

          1 Reply
          1. re: elonmba

            Is this the same España you are talking about? http://www.laespana.net/