Puerto Rico Trip Report – Arrival To SJU & Drive To St Regis Bahia Beach


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For us, it’s hard to resist jetting down to the Caribbean for a long weekend. So when we saw Delta offer a low priced L class coach ticket from ATL to SJU, we were off to Puerto Rico in a heart beat. We chose the new St Regis Bahia Beach and the Ritz Carlton San Juan. A long weekend in Puerto Rico was a perfect way to reconnect. We spent three nights at the St Regis using free night certificates from SPG’s 2011 promotion, explored a new part of the island and then spent the last 2 nights at the Ritz Carlton in Isla Verde.

Trip Report

  1. Delta Flight to SJU & Drive to Bahia Beach
  2. St Regis Bahia Beach
  3. St Regis Bahia Beach Continued
  4. El Yunque
  5. Ritz Carlton San Juan

Flight To San Juan Puerto Rico

We purchased two coach class tickets and gambled with elite upgrades to first class. I am a Delta Diamond member and Mrs Weekly Flyer is a Gold member. Both upgrades cleared at the respective upgrade windows. We selected seats 2 C and 2 D on Delta’s 757. It was a quick 3.5 hour flight down to SJU, and was especially easy with the upgrade to first class. We took advantage of the in-flight entertainment with Mrs Weekly Flyer watching movies and the moving map for yours truly. We had a nice view during approach to the SJU airport.

Seat

Leg Room

Moving Map

Entertainment

Arrival

View On Arrival

Arrival 2

View On Arrival

Drive To Bahia Beach

If you go to the St Regis Bahia Beach I would highly recommend renting a car. It is a very easy drive and you’ll have the added benefit of being free to roam the island.

We rented a car from the Avis airport location. The shuttle is a quick 2 minute ride directly to the off site car lot. After a car change we took off on 66 East towards Fajardo. The drive was a very easy 35 minute highway drive.

Drive

Drive To Bahia Beach

Happy Hour Provisions

You have to be prepared for Happy Hours on long weekends. We anticipated an upgrade to a room with a balcony at the St Regis to enjoy sunsets. So we decided to pick up some Champagne and wine to enjoy Happy Hour on our balcony (in case we were upgraded, which would be determined at check in).

There are a few convenient options to stock up on provisions. The best option is the big box store once you exit the highway. We picked up a nice bottle of rose Veuve Cliquot since we enjoyed it so much during our visit to the champagne caves in Epernay on our last visit to France. We also picked up a bottle of red and a bottle of white at a decent price.

Store

Bottom Line

Puerto Rico is a convenient Caribbean destination, even for a long weekend. Starwood has expanded their footprint with one relatively new and another renovated property, the St Regis and the W Hotel Vieques island. We will share perspectives on the St Regis Bahia Beach in our next post.

The Delta Diamond and Gold elite status paid off with an upgrade to first class for our 3.5 hour trip. I highly recommend renting a car if you go to Bahia Beach. You will not only have an easy highway drive to Bahia Beach but you’ll also have access to explore the entire island.

If you are short on elite status, consider the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from Amex which gives 5 elite qualifying nights, and 2 stay credits just for having the card. The Platinum Card from American Express offers complimentary annual SPG Gold status just for having the card, so that is something else to consider.

If you are looking for Marriott points, remember, Starpoints are valuable and made more so by the Marriott Starwood merger last year. You can transfer 1 Starpoints to 3 Marriott points. Consider Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express.

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IMG_0336

Beach View From Estate Building

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. This post was accurate at the time of posting, offer may be unavailable on this site at a later time. For details on current offers visit the card issuer’s site.

About The Weekly Flyer

The Weekly Flyer writes about travel from a business traveler perspective. He travels the world every week accumulating points and miles along the way. Feel free to reach me at theweeklyflyer@gmail.com

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Comments

  1. Love Puerto Rico! Got engaged there and was married 2 years later. I’m hoping to save enough miles to go back and stay at a decent hotel. Love your blog! 🙂

  2. I am going there for Easter weekend and would love to know some tips on what to see and where to eat. I am staying 4 nights at El Conqisitador near Fajardo and 2 nights in San Juan. Seems like St. Regis is very near to the hotel I will be staying in.

  3. I also picked up a T fare via JFK and I am a Delta DM and Mrs. Ikonos is a GM. Hopefully our upgrades clear as well.

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