InterContinental San Juan Resort & Casino (5961 Avenida Isla Verde, Isla Verde) — A blue neon light envelops you as you enter this casino, which draws locals and visitors with its elegant decor. Live music is usually available on Saturday nights.
El San Juan Hotel & Casino, The Waldorf-Astoria Collection (6063 Avenida Isla Verde, Isla Verde) — Neither the clangs of the slot machines nor the sounds of the salsa band disrupt the semblance of Old World. The polish continues in the adjacent lobby, with its huge chandeliers and mahogany paneling.
Plaza del Mercado (Calle Dos Hermanos e/Calle Capital, Santurce) — Though mostly overlooked by tourists, the Plaza del Mercado is one of the most charming corners of San Juan. At its center is a market hall dating from 1910. Inside you’ll find bushels of fruits and vegetables, many of which you probably haven’t seen before. […]
Plaza de Hostos is located near La Casita, features artisan displays, snack stands, and traditional piragüeros, who sell shaved ice topped with tropical fruit syrup.
Plaza de Colón (Old San Juan) — The tallest statue of Christopher Columbus in the Americas stands atop a soaring column and fountain in this bustling Old San Juan square, kitty-corner to Castillo San Cristóbal. What was once called St. James Square was renamed in 1893 to honor the 400th anniversary of Columbus’s arrival in […]
Teatro Tapia (Plaza Colón, Calle Fortaleza, Old San Juan) — named for Puerto Rican playwright Alejandro Tapia y Rivera, this theater hosts traveling and locally produced theatrical and musical productions. Matinee performances with family entertainment are also held here, especially around the holidays.
Old Harbor Brewery (202 Calle Tizol e/Calle Recinto Sur, Old San Juan) — Serious beer-lovers know to head to this authentic microbrewery and restaurant close to the harborfront. More clubby than pubby, it packs in locals as well as tourists who come to taste the five delicious German-style beers, brewed in European-style open fermentation tanks. […]
Nuyorican Café (312 Calle San Francisco, c/Callejón de la Capilla, Old San Juan) — There’s something interesting happening at this hipper-than-hip, no-frills, wood-paneled performance space nearly every night, be it an early evening play, poetry reading, or talent show or, later on, a band playing Latin jazz, Cuban son, Puerto Rican salsa, or rock. During […]
Mist (San Juan Water & Beach Club, 2 Calle Tartak, Isla Verde) — On the roof of the San Juan Water & Beach Club Hotel, this sexy spot offers some of the best ocean views anywhere in Isla Verde. On the weekends there’s a DJ, and locals pack in to relax at the bar or […]
Le Lo Lai (Festival) (Old San Juan) — The year-round festival called Le Lo Lai celebrates Puerto Rico’s Taíno Indian, Spanish, and African heritage. Performances showcasing island music and folklore take place Tuesday and Sunday around Old San Juan. It’s sponsored by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company.