Puerto Rico’s West Region: Porta del Sol

We interview Tomas Ramirez, owner of Combate Beach Hotel, a former pharmaceutical executive who fell in love with the West and bought this boutique hotel on the beach. He speaks to the laid-back, chill nature of the region.

The Island’s Relaxed and Laid-Back Side

To stand at the edge of the sea; to sense the ebb and flow of the tides; to feel the breath of moving water, to watch the flight of shorebirds, is to have knowledge of things nearly eternal as any earthly life can be.

This is a place that whispers to the soul, imploring mind and body to relax, to let go and be at peace again. The needle of serenity follows its own magnetic north here, and points to the fine sand and radiant sunsets.

This is the Gate of the Sun, the least spoiled and most uncrowded sanctuary of the island. The long fetch of the peninsula makes the surfing unreasonably good.

Tomas Ramirez, owner of Combate Beach Hotel, is the man to see here. A former pharmaceutical executive, he fell in love with the West and bought his boutique hotel on the sand. He speaks to the laid-back, chill nature of the region, and will give insider tips on the best places for red snapper, conch and lobster; the best places to ride the waves and dive beneath them; the wildlife refuges; the Guánica Dry Forest, the legendary lighthouse; and where to best see and feel the salt flats.

This is the place to toss the cell phone, to bury the digital devices, and just surrender to the senses, the present and the frisson of being. Connectivity is as useless and fugitive as necklace beads without a connecting chain, and we are so much better for it.

At the end of the day, it is here you will delight in the magic and thrills of paradise; it is here you can find your real self. Simple and grand; timeless and radiant—this is the West of Puerto Rico.

For more tips on what to see and do in Puerto Rico, click here.