Puerto Rico’s capital San Juan is a historic and vibrant wonderland that radiates a modern, up-to-the-minute vibe. San Juan boasts of timeless history and is the Americas’ second-oldest European-founded settlement. A striking shoreline and a marvelous cultural mosaic make this place a top Caribbean destination. What’s more, of all the islands in the Caribbean, Puerto Rico is also one of the friendliest LGBTQ destinations. Gay hotels in San Juan, Puerto Rico have been around for a long time and range from quaint guesthouses to bigger and luxurious digs. So, it’s easy to see why LGBTQ travelers absolutely love this wonderful beach getaway.
San Juan’s gay scene is a well-developed one, with inclusivity seeped across the city. The city is the queen of the Caribbean’s LGBTQ+ nightlife, which is centered around Old San Juan, Condado, and Santurce neighborhoods. True to its fame as a beach getaway, the island boasts of two gay beaches, the Atlantic and Ocean Park beaches. San Juan even has two annual LGBTQ Pride celebrations. Moreover, there are also gay cruises that sail from San Juan, which happen to be the biggest floating parties on the ocean.
Clearly, San Juan makes for a fantastic LGBTQ cultural destination in the Caribbean. Take your pick from the top 11 gay hotels in San Juan, PR to make your vacation memorable.
Coqui del Mar
Coqui del Mar guesthouse is perhaps one of the most well-known gay hotels in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The gay-owned guest house is big on local charm and is super gay-friendly. In fact, it hosted the country’s first-ever Naked Weekend celebrations in 2019. It’s also the best place to stay during San Juan Pride for its clothing-optional events, themed, and pool parties. What’s more, they offer a whole lot of extra gay tour activities during this period too.
The intimate, six-room property features homey decor and an excellent staff armed to dish out lots of travel tips. The rooms feature cozy seating areas, charmingly mismatched furniture and fabrics, and artwork by local artists. They’re surprisingly great on hi-tech mod-cons like Apple smart TVs, DVD players, and iPod docks. The attached full kitchens are great for whipping up quick and cheap meals.
The rooms are set amidst lovely green gardens peppered with Adirondack chairs, cutesy, hand-painted signs, and potted plants. Lounge around at the patio tables shaded by beach umbrellas, or relax at the tiny hot tub. With Ocean Park beach a street away, the umbrellas, beach towels, and boogie boards provided by the guesthouse are perfect. Plus, you don’t need to worry about sanding up your room after a trip to the beach. You can simply wash down in the outdoor shower.
The extremely alluring Numero Uno Guesthouse lives up to its name and is one of the most beautiful accommodations in San Juan. The gay-friendly boutique hotel lies right on Condado Beach and features merely 14 rooms, giving a new meaning to the word ‘intimate’. The quaint, yet excellent Pamela’s Caribbean Cuisine overlooking the ocean is famous for its creative take on island fare. It’s also where a lip-smacking Caribbean-fusion breakfast is served in the mornings.
Guests will love the uncluttered, elegant, and artful look of the rooms at Numero Uno, which feature garden and sea-view rooms. If you’re looking to splurge, the luxurious and spacious penthouse with high ceilings, a fully-stocked kitchen, a private balcony, and sweeping ocean views is worth every dollar.
The hotel’s location is equally enviable, for right behind its walls sits the Ocean Park Beach. Apart from lounge chairs and umbrellas, Numero Uno even has a daytime beach waiter service for its guests. Also, some of San Juan’s best gay bars are within walking distance.
Serafina Beach Hotel
Nestled right on Condado Beach is the gay-friendly Serafina Beach Hotel, which boasts of a stunning beach-chic aesthetic. The adults-only, design-centric hotel features towering ceilings and bright-white decor peppered with shades of blue. They are the perfect infinity-like frames for picture windows overlooking the ocean.
All rooms at Serafina boast of incredible water vistas, which are accentuated by the white and seafoam-green color palette. Some of them even boast of terraces. Plus, a slew of mod-cons like minibars, smart TVs, and high-end toiletries make for great perks. However, its the array of amenities at Serafina that is truly mind-boggling. The stunning infinity pool is the center of all action, with the cocktail-sipping, Instagramming crowd swaying to the DJ’s tunes. There’s no better a place to dig into San Juan seafood than the aMare restaurant, a place patronized by locals as well. There’s even the craft cocktail bar Surf Caffè is the ideal setting for a sundowner cocktail. For those interested in exploring San Juan, the hotel is more than happy to arrange for the same.
If that wasn’t enough, Serafina sits right down the street from some of the best LGBTQ nightlife in San Juan. The Coeano and Oasis gay bars, for instance, are right down the street.
The LGBT-owned gem of an Andalucia Guesthouse is a charming, gay-friendly inn boasting of gorgeous Moroccan-Spanish flair. The cutesy inn lies is the perfect value-for-money, authentic Puerto Rican stay in San Juan.
Housed in a Spanish-style house, the decor is inspired by Andalusian and Moorish cultures, as is evident in its name. The guesthouse boasts of homey touches like ceramic pots filled with greenery and foliage and hand-painted tiles that evoke the spirit of its namesake region. Rooms are simple but attractively furnished and feature private baths. In fact, the largest studio room with two queen beds and a kitchen is great for splurging without burning a hole in your pocket. Plus, the guesthouse doesn’t skimp on amenities. The sundeck is perfect for relaxing with a cuppa in the mornings. For a heavenly soak, head to the Jacuzzi tub on the secluded patio.
The Andalusian guesthouse lies just four streets away from Ocean Park beach. For gay travelers who don’t wish to head to Condado’s gay scene 10 minutes away, the fetish-friendly Bear Tavern is a mere three-minute walk.
Condado Plaza Hilton
LGBTQ travelers looking for frill-full gay hotels in San Juan, Puerto Rico will love the Condado Plaza Hilton. The lagoon hotel sits right on a gorgeous oceanfront section right next to the bridge to Old San Juan.
The decadent main pool area at the hotel is perhaps the most favorite with guests, as it features a gorgeous pool and swim-up bar and tons of loungers. A fun addition is a waterslide which lies within a castle-like tower. Plus, the hotel has San Juan’s only saltwater pool, which boasts of stunning ocean views across a verdant lawn. There’s even a pool overlooking the lagoon and the Old City, with white loungers lined up in the shade.
Guests can choose to dine at any of the nine bars and restaurants at the hotel. Gym rats will like the idea of a 24-hour fitness center with a whirlpool, steam room, and sauna. Do book a romantic couples massage at the open-air treatment room overlooking the shoreline. If you’re the intrepid kind, the boat and bike rentals will appeal to you. If that wasn’t enough, the hotel has a small beach that sits on a cove-like inlet with umbrellas and loungers which is the perfect way to end the day.
The best feature of the rooms is private balconies and floor-to-ceiling windows. The hotel is extremely welcoming to LGBTQ travelers and has even offered anniversary and romantic packages to LGBTQ couples. For couples looking to splurge, the Coloring San Juan With Love package with an LGBT itinerary guide, full breakfast, a multi-course feast, welcome drinks, and turn-down service is perfect. It’s aspects like these that make San Juan one of the most welcoming gay-friendly islands in the world.
La Concha Renaissance Resort
The hip gay-friendly La Concha Renaissance Resort draws the younger LGBTQ set like a moth to a flame. The hotel overlooks the gay-friendly Atlantic Beach and is much loved by beach bums and water babies. It’s also a favorite with party monsters delving into Condado’s gay scene at SX Club and Circo Bar, which lie within walking distance.
The sleek hotel boasts of striking views of the white sands and turquoise-azure waters of the Atlantic Ocean. A soothing fountain and upbeat tunes welcome guests into the hotel’s utterly contemporary lobby. This is where lies the amazing 24-hour casino as well as the buzzing lobby bar. The bar serves coffee and salads during the day and sees people dressed to the nines partying at night. It begins the day as a buffet breakfast-serving place with killer ocean views. Guests will love lounging around in the adults-only infinity Suite Pool. There’s also a multi-tiered neon-lit pool and a smaller infinity pool, and all three of them boast of superb poolside service. The fitness center with views of the ocean could inspire you to possibly work out on vacation. Plus, the beachside service with umbrellas and white lounge chairs is just what one needs for a great beach day.
The two towers, the Suite Tower and Ocean Tower are where most of La Concha’s rooms are located. Lightwoods and gray carpets are the perfect canvas for green-blue ocean-inspired bed runners. Apart from a slew of mod-cons, Ocean Tower rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows with sliding doors leading out to patios with partial/full views of the ocean. For those who want luxury, the deluxe pool cabanas in a poolside low-rise structure are perfect.
LGBTQ culture buffs looking to delve into the rich, long history of Old San Juan will love the convenience that the gay-friendly Gallery Inn offers. The hotel is located in the heart of Old San Juan and is surrounded by some of the city’s best historic attractions. These include the 16th-century San Jose church, Museum of Art & History, and the ‘El Morro’ world heritage site. We’d recommend this wonderful and exhaustive 4-hour walking tour of Old San Juan which will give you a fantastic insight into the history of San Juan.
The Gallery Inn is not just known for its location, but also for oodles of old-world charm radiating from its every facet. The hotel is housed in a 200-year-old mansion, with the oldest structure dating back to the mid-18th century. The roof, staircases, hallways, and even rooms are peppered with plaques, ceramic busts, bronze sculptures, paintings. An endlessly favorite activity for guests here is to wander the stunning porticos, parlors, patios, and gardens which dot the property.
Each of the 25 rooms is akin to a museum and features Bohemain antiques, handwoven tapestries, paintings, sculptures, and stunning four-poster beds. While there isn’t a TV, the balconies with views ensure you won’t need one. The panoramas of the dark old fortress walls and the turquoise ocean beyond are better than what you’ll ever see in your life.
Hotel El Convento
There’s plenty of hotels in Old San Juan with character and charm, but none can match that of the opulent Hotel El Convento. The hotel is housed in a former Carmelite convent and is one of the most culturally-unique gay-friendly hotels in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The bright-yellow Spanish Colonial exterior is the perfecting setting for art and furnishings from the conquistador era, white-and-black floors, and towering, arched doorways. A romantic courtyard in the shade of a 350-year-old Nispero tree is the centerpiece, under which you can begin your day with a lovely breakfast. The bar has a very romantic evening setting with Spanish music and candles flickering in the Caribbean breeze. The terrace is the perfect setting for a nightly cheese and wine reception where fellow travelers can mingle amidst sweeping ocean views. It has a hot tub, plunge pool, and lounge chairs which makes it the perfect lounging and relaxation spot as well. Plus, there’s even a lovely herb garden on-site.
Austerity is history in El Convento, whose rooms boast of mahogany furniture, plush, luxurious beds, modern marble bathrooms, Andalusian tiled floors, and private terraces or Juliet balconies. Views are equally stunning, either overlooking the ocean or the San Juan Cathedral, which is one of the oldest ones in the Western hemisphere.
Apart from its own unique history, the El Convento lies in Old San Juan, one of the most historic parts of the island. In fact, most of the best places to see in Puerto Rico are in San Juan‘s Old Town area and include centuries-old churches, fortresses, and even a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
O:live Boutique Hotel
One of the more romantic hotels in the Condado neighborhood is the gay-friendly O:live Boutique Hotel. The hotel blends Mediterranean luxury with amazing service to create digs so alluring that one will forget that it doesn’t face the beach.
The décor is a marvelous mélange of contemporary Spanish, Moroccan, Italian, and French flair. The hotel is peppered with contemporary and antique curios, chic-distressed wooden walls, wrought-iron furniture, and modesty-damning all-glass bathrooms. While the entry-level standard suites are a bit small, all rooms are remarkably comfortable. Flowing white drapes, sleigh beds, and earth tones dot every room, all of which boast of a slew of hi-tech -cons.
While O:live lacks fitness facilities, it does have a lovely ground-floor garden and a striking rooftop terrace and bar-café. The jacuzzis and plunge pool on the rooftop is the ultimate place to relax, complete with sweeping ocean views. Guests looking for excitement don’t have to look far, for Condado’s dazzling gay scene is right around the corner.
Caribe Hilton Hotel
LGBTQ travelers seeking decadent luxury should look no further than the gay-friendly Caribe Hilton Hotel. There aren’t many hotels who can lay claim to the presence of a fortress on their premises, but Caribe Hilton is one. The historic Fort San Gerónimo del Boquerón lies on the grounds of this gorgeous resort. The 17th-century fortress once guarded the entrance to San Juan Bay. Also, Condado and its fabulous gay scene is a five-minute drive. Even the other gay bars in Santurce are a mere 10-minute drive away.
The hotel’s first impression makes for a lasting impression. Rippling white tiles and curved, floor-to-ceiling windows, and jaw-dropping vistas of the ocean make for a gorgeous welcome. Satiate your hunger and drinking pangs at any of the seven restaurants, including the supposed birthplace of the piña colada, Caribar. The hotel also treats its guests to multiple outdoor spaces, a spectacular pool complex, and a wonderfully secluded beach. Gym rates can head off to the fitness center, while leisure lads can unwind at the Zen Spa.
The rooms at Caribe Hilton reflect the oceanic vibe with a bone-white canvas and pops and splashes of seafoam. Plus, all rooms boast of balconies and views or either the lush tropical gardens or the mainstay of San Juan, the Atlantic Ocean.
A vacation in San Juan is to be enjoyed in a slow, laidback manner, and the gay-friendly Dreamcatcher Guesthouse channels this very ultra-relaxed vibe. Set amidst green gardens, the lovely guesthouse lies just a block away from Ocean Park beach.
It’s difficult to not fall in love with the vintage art and furniture, eye-catching fabrics, and vibrant colors that dot each room. Most rooms feature a greenery element like potted cacti or hanging vines. Plus, each room features at least one eponymous dreamcatcher, lending them a dreamy, Bohemian vibe. What’s more, some rooms even have lovely outdoor wooden showers on patios, along with hammocks and chairs for lazy days.
Communal areas of the guesthouse feature the same easy-going vibe. Guests can curl up with a book or a cuppa in the quiet sitting areas with hammocks or chairs peppered all over. Two well-stocked communal kitchens are great for whipping up quick and cheap meals, and maybe even impress a cute fellow traveler. The artistic lobby is where guests can find locally-made jewelry and knick-knacks. It opens up to a common area stocked with board games and is perfect for striking conversations with fellow travelers. What’s more, the guesthouse even offers free beach gear, yoga classes and bike rentals for a fee, as well as dinner parties with local musicians and salsa classes. Clearly, the Dreamcatcher guesthouse is one of the best gay hotels in San Juan, Puerto Rico to be living life as a local.
Just So You Know:
- San Juan hosted its first trans pride day in 2019.
Get Some Culture in San Juan:
- San Juan Condado Pride: San Juan’s Pride Festival is one fun-filled weekend of shows, special events, and raucous, wild parties. During the festival, Condado’s gay bars have their own set of events and parties going on. In fact, Condado beach clubs like the Oasis bar even host afterparties following the parade. Since 2019, a fabulous clothing-optional event called the Naked Gay Weekend was also hosted at the Coqui Del Mar guesthouse.
Best Gay Bars / Clubs in San Juan:
- Oceano: This open-air, upscale, gay-owned place is the perfect place to grab a drink and dance right opposite the gay beach.
- Circo Bar: This is a dance/video bar and hosts popular drag shows.
- El Chinchorro de W: This gay-owned LGBTQ-friendly club is where the late-night dancers head to San Juan.
- SX The Club: This is hands down the best gay stripper bar in San Juan. It features super-hot and super-friendly guys, a pool table, and videos.
- Oasis Tapas & Lounge: Killer happy hours and great go-go dancers make this bar a go-to spot for the LGBTQ public.
- The Bear Tavern: This fabulous bear bar welcomes cubs, otters, bears and is extremely popular with locals.
- Zal Si Puedes Mini Bar: This gay bar attracts 40-plus men and their young admirers.
- Temptation: This LGBTQ dance club boasts of a sexy, steamy vibe, hunky go-go boys, backroom, and a weekly bear party.
Best Gay Saunas in San Juan:
- Xteamworks: This gay sex club features a steam room, sauna, sling, darkroom, gym, and even a labyrinth.