¡BIENVENIDOS!

Welcome to Puerto Rico!

La Isla del Encanto is a beautiful Caribbean island rich in history, culture, exceptional food, pristine beaches, and majestic mountains, perfect for relaxation and adventure.

We highly recommend extending your stay for a few days before the wedding festivities in order to take advantage of all Puerto Rico has to offer!

The bride will arrive on Wednesday, so count on organized group activities Thursday including a daytime beach excursion and a fun evening out in historic Old San Juan!

Below are our family-favorite recommendations to make the most out of your time on our beloved island! Please feel free to reach out to any Picon or Olmedo family members for questions or more information.

Sample itinerary:
Wednesday
Arrive to Puerto Rico, settle into hotel, catch sunset on the beach then head to dinner at any of the recommended restaurants!
Thursday
Join us for a daytime beach excursion, then a fun evening out in Old San Juan!
Friday
Go sight-seeing in historic Old San Juan, enjoying unique Spanish architecture, glorious ocean views, and the impressive 15th century El Morro fort and San Cristobal castle --- OR --- Rent a car and head to El Yunque, the nearby lush tropical rainforest to hike and swim in waterfalls! Just be sure to head back in time to enjoy music, drinks, and dancing with us at the Friday night Welcome Party
Saturday
Wedding Festivities!
Sunday
Brunch, lounge by the beach or the pool before checkout!

Travel

Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport
Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU), Av. Aeropuerto, Carolina, 00979, Puerto Rico

This is the main airport in Puerto Rico, located 3 miles southeast of San Juan and 15 minutes from the Caribe Hilton hotel. Uber is not allowed at the airport for pickup but there are plenty of taxis. Flat rate to Condado or Old San Juan should be @$12-$15.

No passports are necessary for a U.S. citizen or national traveling to San Juan.


Prior to entering Puerto Rico, please review the Covid-19 travel requirements and fill out the travel declaration form:
https://travelsafe.pr.gov/#tra...

General Travel Information

Check the official Tourism website for updated coronavirus-related travel guidelines and for additional information: https://www.discoverpuertorico...

Getting around San Juan is easy with taxis and Uber. There is no need to rent a car unless you want to go explore the island on your own.

The "headquarters" hotel will be the Caribe Hilton, located between Old San Juan (less than 10 min.) and the Condado area (less than five min). Isla Verde beach is 10-15 min away. These areas have resort hotels, boutique hotels, guest houses, Airbnbs and VRBOs for all budgets and are conveniently close to everything.

Guest Accomodations

Caribe Hilton
Caribe Hilton, 1 Calle San Gerónimo, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
787-721-0303
Check-in: August 15th, 2021 | Check-out: August 24th, 2021
Use Code:  POWE21

Home of the main event!

The Caribe Hilton closed for almost two years after the hurricane and had just reopened before the pandemic. It has been an iconic property in San Juan since 1949 for tourists and locals. We're so excited to have both the wedding and the welcome party here!



To reserve a room at the Caribe Hilton with a wedding block discounted room rate,

click BOOK A ROOM below, or use this link:

https://book.passkey.com/e/50169132



You can also reserve a room at the discounted room rate by calling:

Hilton toll free number - 1-800-HILTONS

Caribe Hilton reservations - 787-721-0303 x 2156

Please refer to your group code POWE21

Hotel El Convento
100 Calle del Cristo, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
787-723-9020

Legendary and Old San Juan. A favorite, steps away from the ceremony site at the San Juan Cathedral.

OTHER HOTELS

We have a block of rooms with a special rate at the Caribe Hilton Hotel, where the wedding reception will take place. We will provide round-trip transportation to the wedding ceremony in Old San Juan and back to the reception at the Hilton. From wherever you stay, you can taxi, Uber or drive to the Hilton and ride our shuttles. We compiled a list of hotels nearby to give you choices and/or comparisons and/or reasons to come back another time or extend your stay now! There are also plenty of AirBnB and VRBO options. (Don't delay!)


CONDADO AREA:

Condado Vanderbilt Hotel -- Historic and gorgeous! ($$$)

https://www.condadovanderbilt.com/?utm_source=google-my-business&utm_medium=organic


La Concha -- Fabulous resort! ($$$)

http://www.laconcharesort.com/?utm_source=google-my-business&utm_medium=organic


Olive Boutique Hotel-- Ultra cool & rooftop, Condado Lagoon view! ($$$)

https://oliveboutiquehotel.com/


Serafina Beach Hotel -- Beachfront and fabulous! ($$$)

https://www.serafinabeachhotel.com/


AC Hotel by Marriott -- Rooftop in Condado! ($$)

https://www.marriott.com/


San Gerónimo Hotel -- Brand new, literally steps from the Hilton! ($$)

https://www.elsangeronimohotel.com/


Casa Isabel Bed & Breakfast - A Budget Bungalow ($)

http://www.puertoricobedandbreakfasts.com/casa-sol-bed-and-breakfast



HISTORIC OLD SAN JUAN:

Decanter Hotel -- Rooftop view, by San Juan Cathedral ($$)

https://www.decanterhotel.com/


Casa Sol Bed and Breakfast - Beautiful B&B in El Viejo San Juan ($$)

http://casasolbnb.com/


352 Guest House - Rooftop pool in El Viejo San Juan! ($$)

http://www.352guesthouse.com/


Casablanca Hotel - In SoFo (South Fortaleza Street) ($$)

https://hotelcasablancapr.com/


Villa Herencia - B&B across La Catedral ($$)

https://villaherencia.com/


Fortaleza Guest House - Inexpensive El Viejo San Juan Digs! ($)

https://www.hostelworld.com/hosteldetails.php/Fortaleza-Guest-House/San-Juan/39468


ISLA VERDE AREA:

Fairmont El San Juan Hotel - Gorgeous beach & hotel, beware the beach traffic! ($$?)

https://www.fairmont.com/puerto-rico/


DORADO

Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve - Go early and go for it! ($$$$)

https://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/puerto-rico/dorado-beach


NY Magazine article with hotel options - all prices (June 2018)

"WHERE THE LOCALS WOULD STAY IN SAN JUAN IF THEY WEREN'T LOCALS

http://nymag.com/urbanist/the-best-hotels-in-san-juan-for-every-budget.html

AIRBNB and VRBO options

There are many AirBnB and VRBO options in the Condado and Old San Juan area.

Ashford Avenue and streets nearby are good options close to the beach; you'll probably find an apartment in this area. Ocean Park is also close to the beach and may have both apartments and houses as AirBnB options. Isla Verde is @ 15 min away (if no traffic) and has a gorgeous, wide beach. But traffic in the area on a beautiful Saturday beach day could make you miss the wedding.


Feel free to run your findings by us! We have a few phone numbers from friends for direct bookings for apartments and will continue to gather more. We will be happy to share those with you. See below!


https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/16266324?source_impression_id=p3_1565637926_Qor7JFaqOkr8rQmm


http://www.dreamcatcherpr.com/rooms-1


https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/23326272?s=67&shared_item_type=1&virality_entry_point=1&sharer_id=46457139


https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/31351886?s=67&shared_item_type=1&virality_entry_point=1&sharer_id=46457139


https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/28861977?s=67&shared_item_type=1&virality_entry_point=1&sharer_id=46457139


https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/31113942?s=67&shared_item_type=1&virality_entry_point=1&sharer_id=46457139


https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/23245171?s=67&shared_item_type=1&virality_entry_point=1&sharer_id=46457139



Things to Do

El Viejo San Juan

The historic district of the capital city of San Juan. A National Historic Landmark District listed on the National Register of Historic Places and a UNESCO World Heritage Site!

Spend an afternoon wandering the cobblestone streets and visit the many museums, art galleries, shops, and local restaurants and bars.

Castillo San Felipe del Morro San Juan
501 Calle Norzagaray, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico

Famous fort from when Puerto Rico was first settled. Tour the fort and the surrounding area!

Playa El Escambrón
Puerta de Tierra, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico

Home to La Ocho surf spot!

Playita del Condado
Playita del Condado, San Juan, 00907, Puerto Rico

Small beach with swim area overlooking El Boqueron bay and the Caribe Hilton!

Laguna del Condado
Laguna del Condado, San Juan, 00910, Puerto Rico

Take a kayak or standup paddleboard tour from la laguna all the way to El Morro!

Playa Último Trolley (Playa Ocean Park)
Calle General Patton, San Juan, 00911, Puerto Rico

Swim, soak up the sun, play some beach volleyball, or sign up for a kitesurfing lesson. If you're lucky you might see Dr. Olmedo zooming by while windsurfing!

Playa Piñones - La Pocita - Chatarra
PR-187, Carolina, Loíza 00983, Puerto Rico

Great escape from the city. Beautiful beach with relaxing swim area, epic surf spot, and plenty of kioskos with great food to eat!

El Yunque National Forest
Puerto Rico

The only tropical rainforest in the national forest system of the USDA! Beautiful hiking trails that lead to scenic views, spectacular flora and fauna, waterfalls, and more!

La Placita de Santurce
179 Calle dos Hermanos, San Juan, 00907, Puerto Rico

Former town square that is now filled to the brims with bars, restaurants, live music, and more!

Royal Isabela Golf Course
396 Ave Noel Estrada, Isabela, PR 00662
(787) 609-5888

Slicing into the Atlantic Ocean has never felt better! Come for the golf and stay for dinner and drinks with a view over the course AND the ocean!

Toro Verde Adventure Park
PR-155, Orocovis, 00720, Puerto Rico

Zip down The Monster and The Beast!

Playa de Luquillo
Playa De Luquillo, 00773, Puerto Rico

Worth the drive to check out Rosa Olmedo's childhood beach of choice!

Playa Escondida
Fajardo, 00738, Puerto Rico

A short hike through the mangroves gets you to a long stretch of gorgeous, uncrowded beach.

Vieques, Puerto Rico

Travel by small plane or ferry, Vieques is home to oustanding white sand beaches, serenity, and the Bahía Bioluminiscente!

There are five bioluminescent bays in the world: Luminous Lagoon in Jamaica, Halong Bay in Vietnam, and Puerto Rico's Laguna Grande, La Parguera, and Mosquito Bay.

Las Paylas
PR-983, Luquillo, 00773, Puerto Rico

Water has carved a natural slide into river rocks at the edge of El Yunque Rainforest! Off the beaten path but well worth the adventure!

Caño Martín Peña Bicycle Tour
Martín Peña Channel, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Learn about urban sustainability and environmental justice through BiciCano's bicycle tour of the Martín Peña community of San Juan

La Fortaleza/Governor's Mansion

May have to book as part of an organized tour...


Food!
RESTAURANTES

If you have a few extra days, bring your appetite! Puerto Rico's Caribbean cuisine is exceptionally delicious!

Marmalade - El Viejo San Juan - Fine Dining

Exceptional spot for romantic dinner. One of Francisco's favorites!

https://www.marmaladepr.com/


Don Ruiz - El Viejo San Juan - Breakfast

Delicious coffee and outdoor seating


La Taberna Lúpulo - El Viejo San Juan - Bar

Bar specializing in craft beers and snacks. Great late night spot!


La Factoriía - El Viejo San Juan - Bar & Dining

Michelle Marie's favorite bar in EVSJ. Live music (salsa!), delicious cocktails, dining options, and multiple rooms all within one space.


Al Fresco Rooftop Wine Bar - El Viejo San Juan - Bar & Dining

Grab drinks and dinner on the roof!


Punto de Vista - El Viejo San Juan - Bar & Dining

Another great rooftop option. Located on top floor of Hotel Milano. Spectacular views!


La Bombonera - El Viejo San Juan - Breakfast

Since 1902. Try a mallorca with café con leche o chocolate


ChocoBar Cortés - El Viejo San Juan - Chocolate

4th generation chocolate makers, new generation chocolate space


La Vergüenza - El Viejo San Juan - Bar

3 floors of music, drinks, bar food, and a rooftop bar overlooking La Perla and the ocean!


Verde Mesa - El Viejo San Juan - Pescatarian/Vegetarian

Just down the block from where the engagement took place! Delicious seafood and vegetarian options.


El Hamburger - San Juan - Hole in the Wall

Cheap eats that hit the spot after surfing La Ocho


Ceviche House - Isla Verde - Hole in the Wall

Francisco's favorite stop for...ceviche! Fresh ceviche and delicious tostones!


Jose Enrique Puerto Rican Restaurant - Condado - Local Flavors

Spectacular Puerto Rican cuisine, reservations required!


1919 Restaurant at Condado Vanderbilt - Condado

Fine dining & extensive wine list with ocean views!

https://www.condadovanderbilt.com/condado-1919-restaurant


Tresbé - Ocean Park - Casual Lunch

Inexpensive sandwiches, coffee, and smoothies in a casual atmosphere


Pinky's - Ocean Park - Breakfast/Smoothies

Inexpensive breakfast outpost specializing in breakfast sandwiches and smoothies!


Kasalta Bakery - Ocean Park - Breakfast/Lunch/Repostería

Where Obama had a Medianoche sandwich (Think Cuban sandwich but with sweeter tasting bread). Try the quesitos, Dr. Olmedo's favorite treat!


Hacienda San Pedro - Ocean Park - Coffee Shop

Coffee shop specializing in local roasts


La Penultima - Santurce - Bar

Great bar just outside of La Placita de Santurce

CHINCHORROS Y LECHON

Holes in the wall. Chinchorros by the beach have the best seafood fritters, and in the mountains, the best roasted pig aka Lechón.

Piñones Kiosks - By the beach in the Piñones beach area.

Luquillo Kiosks - At the foothills of El Yunque rainforest, next to stunning Luquillo Beach.

Guavate - This is the area you'd go to eat the best lechón.

Organized Tours
"Luxury" excursions

If you want to explore but without hassles and in comfort, this is the ($$) way to go!

https://www.viator.com/tours/San-Juan/Private-Driving-Tour-of-San-Juan-Highlights/d903-9406P7

https://www.viator.com/Puerto-...

AirBnB Experiences & Culture and History Tours

Although we haven't taken these tours, they seem fun and adventurous, show the real Puerto Rico, and they don't seem too touristy. Prices seem to be lower than the more traditional tourist tours ($). But bear in mind that they're geared for the AirBnB tourists -- may not be for everyone! Some tours may require your own travel by car - check first.

https://www.airbnb.com/s/Puert...

https://www.airbnb.com/s/Puerto-Rico/experiences?refinement_paths%5B%5D=%2Fexperiences%2FKG%2FTag%3A1428&search_type=section_navigation

Bacardi Rum Distillery Tours

About 20 min from San Juan, or you could take the ferry across the bay to get there.

https://www.bacardi.com/casa-bacardi/tickets/

Architecture and History Tours - Old San Juan and beyond

This FABULOUS local non-profit run by architects has access to areas and historic buildings that not even locals typically get to see. March dates will be posted later.

http://9lrn.mjt.lu/nl2/9lrn/m6vw0.html?m=ANEAAFz4hIoAAchWV-gAAASwFwUAAAAzxMcAAD7PAAwHMQBeDH7n6nZMDVxbTGSY2nAWyk1qfgAMFMA&b=5d7acc47&e=b45cc6a7&x=yh8zoBGicldRXxUMIcJsZGWBTBFM3kQjGH_vU6Msetk

https://www.airbnb.com/experiences/174126

Puerto Rico Conservation Trust / Para la Naturaleza

Puerto Rico's premiere nature conservation organization saves lands, habitats and historic properties. Need car for tours.

Historic Sugar Plantation Tour

https://reservaciones.paralanaturaleza.org/event/a053900000OVA0LAAX

Historic Coffee Plantation Tour

https://reservaciones.paralanaturaleza.org/event/a053900000OV8KIAA1/?lang=es

History and Nature in Old San Juan

https://reservaciones.paralana...

Be a manatee caretaker for a day

This center is affiliated to one of the private universities, and no it is not by the ocean. Featured on a PBS special on PR just before the hurricane. All the money goes to help the center.

https://www.airbnb.com/experiences/173531

https://www.pbs.org/video/nature-meet-manatees/?continuousplayautoplay=true

Catamaran sailing

We like these guys! Boat leaves from Fajardo, an hour east of San Juan

https://saltydogcatamaranpr.com/

Bioluminescent Bay

Lots of good companies; we've used this one (owned by marine biologists) many times. Bio Bay is in Fajardo, an hour from San Juan.

https://www.pureadventurepr.com/tours/bio-bay-kayak-tour-puerto-rico/

What the Press Says..
OFFICIAL PR TOURISM

Here is a link to the official Puerto Rico Tourism website.
https://www.discoverpuertorico.com/island
But first, one of Mrs. Michelle Picon's favorite Puerto Ricans, Lin-Manuel Miranda, offers a few video tours (8 cool short videos!) of the island's vibrant culture.
https://www.discoverpuertorico.com/lin-manuel-miranda

Travel Blog - 5 days in PR - Updated April 2021

Five Days in San Juan, PR: The Perfect Caribbean Getaway

https://www.dangerous-business...

Conde Nast, Aug 19, 2019

Three day trips from San Juan

https://www.cntraveler.com/gal...

TRAVEL AND LEISURE, July 13, 2019
New York Magazine

How to shop like a local

(They forgot to add Plaza Las Americas, the shopping mall, plus Playero and others)

http://nymag.com/urbanist/how-to-shop-like-a-local-in-san-juan.html

New York Magazine, June 2018

Day Trips (FYI Parts of El Yunque Rainforest may still be closed...)

http://nymag.com/urbanist/rainforests-rum-castles-and-other-day-trips-from-san-juan.html

New York Magazine, June 2018
What to Wear

WEDDING RECEPTION

Although we're in the tropics, weddings in Puerto Rico tend to be very formal. Most guests wear tuxedos and long dresses.

BEACH WELCOME PARTY

Cocktails by the beach in shades of white! Think linen shirts or guayaberas for the guys, dressy casual outfits for the ladies.

GENERAL EVENING ATTIRE

Evenings out tend to be dressy. Take a shawl or light sweater to a restaurant - air conditioning is often on full blast!

SIGHTSEEING

Be cool and comfortable during the day for sightseeing or the beach. Take a hat, sunscreen. and plenty of water.

(WEATHER)

Temperatures in November range from 75 to 82 degrees and humid. Thankfully there's usually a cool breeze, and most indoor places have A/C.