The most I know about Puerto Rico comes from that time I stayed at the El Conquistador Resort with an ex (ahh…memory lane), and getting drunk at the airport on a four-hour layover.

So I was pretty excited to head to a luncheon today hosted by San Juan Marriott Hotel & Casino. I wanted to know a little bit more.

The luncheon was held at Bobby Flay‘s Manhattan restaurant, Bar Americain (a restaurant I had once visited with said ex…what is is about Puerto Rico and Bobby Flay?).  As I scarfed down steak tartare and several glasses of white wine, I learned a few things about the hotel that you may find of interest.

First, the hotel has installed its own “YouTube concierge,” as part of its “Wish You Were Here” campaign. This takes postcards to the next level. Guests can professionally record 30-second clips of themselves at the hotel and stream it on Marriott’s YouTube channel. I’d rather watch my friends getting drunk than read about it on a smeared postcard that arrives two weeks after they have already returned home.

Guests can also book a kayaking trip in one of Puerto Rico’s three bioluminescent bays. These bays give off an eerie blue light created by living organisms. It’s a surreal experience to paddle through dark caverns while your kayak is halo-ed in a shimmery-turquoise glow.

If you’re looking for a little nightlife, you don’t have to go much further than the hotel’s Lobby Lounge. On Thursday nights through Sunday nights the hotel serves cocktails against a backdrop of live music. The director of sales for the hotel put it best, ” The Lobby isn’t the prettiest girl at the party, but gosh she knows how to party.”

Finally, the general manager of the hotel offered me a little tip on a favorite spot of his for travelers looking for a taste of Old San Juan. Mallorca is a coffee shop for an excellent cup of something hot, a great atmosphere, and a tasty Puerto Rican breakfast.

On my next trip to Puerto Rico, hopefully I’ll make it off the resort and away from the airport bar.

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