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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Small inns offer an ‘oasis’ amid post-hurricane emergency

Puerto Rico’s small inns, or “paradores,” are open and ready to receive visitors, tourists, and Hurricane Fiona victims and first responders.

By The Star Staff

The Puerto Rican Small Inns and Hostels Association announced Wednesday that they are prepared to receive visitors, tourists, victims and first responders.

“We checked with the inns in the association and they are already operating at capacity with all their rooms ready to receive them,” said Xavier A. Ramírez, president of the association. “So far, all the inns are generator operated and have fuel. Although most already have water from the city, and some have wells, we all have large capacity water cisterns, air conditioning, hot water, refrigerators in the room, satellite TV, and swimming pools.”

The restaurants at Villas Sotomayor in Adjuntas, El Buen Café in Hatillo, Guánica 1929 in Guánica, and Combate Beach Resort at Playa El Combate are operating as scheduled, and many other restaurants in those tourist regions are already operating.

“We make this communication, given that, during the most recent emergencies, we become relaxation and rest centers for the Puerto Rican people, and we are receiving many calls and messages from past customers looking for an oasis of peace to pause and distract themselves for two or three days, after the events of this past week,” added Ángel “Cucho” Rodríguez, owner of Parador Boquemar in Boquerón.

Ramirez noted that internet service is still difficult and intermittent, given power outages. However, that has not been a difficulty for the hundreds of guests the island’s small inns, known locally as paradores, have had since most cellular systems are working and provide them with the communication services they need.

“This weekend, our inns were at 90% occupancy, and the restaurant is giving the quality service accustomed to the community,” said Héctor Martínez, owner of the iconic small inn and restaurant El Buen Café.

Regarding beaches and attractions, Ramírez said the wildlife refuges, and the beaches in the southwest and north of the island, are ready for the enjoyment of activities including water and outdoor sports, although some museums and attractions remain closed due to lack of energy.

In October the inns will be celebrating their 49th anniversary with an offer to “stay two nights or more and receive $49 off your stay,” which they have decided to apply now to help mitigate the post-hurricane situation. Prospective guests can call the numbers that appear on the internet and social networks, except for the Parador Guanica 1929, which is operating with an alternate telephone number: (939) 213-6021.

Combate Beach Resort opened its doors to house several families of employees with young and elderly children who were greatly affected by Hurricane Fiona and even lost everything.

“We stand in solidarity with the thousands of Puerto Ricans who still continue to suffer the effects of this event across the island, while we recognize the complexity of the moment we are living, and we know the tension caused by the lack of energy and drinking water among our people,” Ramírez said. “We invite you to visit us to recharge your energies, enjoying a mini-vacation of relaxation and rest in one of our inns. We are waiting for you, we are families serving other families in the world.”

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