Santaella

4.8
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1723 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Puerto Rican
Chef José Santaella has trained with some of the best chefs in the world, including Ferrán Adriá, Eric Ripert, and Gary Danko. His apprenticeships and successful catering career paved the way for Santaella, his signature restaurant in Santurce's La Placita Marketplace. The decor is rustic yet elegant, with exposed walls, Edison light fixtures, an interior garden, and a sparkling bar. Chef Santaella fuses local and international ingredients to perfectly execute Puerto Rican nouvelle cuisine. The menu is dominated by tapas, which you can easily make into a meal. Favorites include the ahi tuna skewers, goat cheese quesadilla, 'alcapurrias' topped with crab, and foie gras terrine with fruit jelly . The cocktail bar is one of the best on the island, so don't leave without trying one of the concoctions by Santaella's mixologists. -Fodors
What 1723 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.7
service
4.7
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Caribbean
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Anniversary and biethday

OT
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It's always a pleasure when I get to eat at Santaella

FO
New Orleans
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food and attentive service. We will be back soon!

OT
New England
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 4

Great food
Too much noise
The place was fool with good ambient
Service took too long

OT
1 review
Dined on 11 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We loved everything. Specially the team singing happy birthday.

SG
Caribbean
2 reviews
Dined on 10 October 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Santaella seemed more promising at first .than we eventually thought to be the case! Great ambiance and a very exciting location in the market area of La Placita in Santurce - an enticing menu ..what more,could one want?! Our appetisers, avietnamese steamed bun with shrimp and something else delicious, were delicious.
However we made the mistake of ordering a main course each - we also didn’t realise how enormous and how locally Puerto Rican they were! My husband ordered the fried snapper - huge and no doubt full of calories, which was accompanied by many tostones - again deep fried, plantains and a huge mound of mashed yam..
WAY too much food. Mine was similarly enormous and off putting. Santaella is a very popular restaurant and does serve some great food but be careful with what you order as it is very local in the tastes it caters for, . and consider sharing dishes (which is what most of the other diners were doing!)
We will definitely visit Santaella again!

SL
Birmingham
3 reviews
Dined on 10 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent restaurant

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OT
Orlando
7 reviews
Dined on 9 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service, excellent food

M
Caribbean
1 review
Dined on 9 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a great dinner experience during my date night. The Sandía Mojito was deliciously refreshing and tasted superb. My favorites are, their amazing truffle cheese quesadilla with honey & balsamic vinagrette and the shrimp Bao. Aaaamazing! Highly recommend.

LB
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 8 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food at Santaella is spectacular. The best restaurant in Puerto Rico!

b
1 review
Dined on 8 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place for any occasion! Cocktails were amazing to start. Bacon wrapped dates, shrimp buns, sliders were very good, and some of the best croquettes I have had. Got the veal cheek for dinner and it was on point. Team members enjoyed their meals as well including a caught that day full red snapper.

CZ
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on 5 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of the best restaurants in Puerto Rico - creative, flavorful, inspired and chic. Chef Santaella stopped by the table and was incredibly gracious. Our waiter, Alejandro, and the whole team that helped him, was spectacular. They worked tirelessly while making it look effortless.

RP
Caribbean
2 reviews
Dined on 5 October 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

Local food with a twist, well elaborated and tasty !! It was surprising how good it was.

MR
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 5 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, ambiance and service! Looking forward to returning

OT
Orlando
8 reviews
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service

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OT
1 review
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great dinning experience! Excellent service! Delicious food! Will continue to dine at Santaella!

OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 3 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As always very good

OT
1 review
Dined on 1 October 2019
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 5

Had to wait about 40 mins for a table even though I had a reservation. once seated, i was told they were out of several menu items one of them was what I wanted to order. Waiters and bar tenders were nice though. Not sure if I’d be returning.

OT
1 review
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was very good and the service was excellent.

OT
Orlando
8 reviews
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service

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OT
Orlando
8 reviews
Dined on 25 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on 25 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Try the Goat Cheese Quesadilla and any of the cocktails!

F
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 21 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Will definitely go back next time we visit Puerto Rico. Truly loved it.

JP
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on 20 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food
Lot of people in the bar
Makes it noisy
But the food was excellent

FP
Caribbean
3 reviews
Dined on 20 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Cocktails are excellent, the food was excellent also. Service was very good, it’s a little noisy but manageable. I recommend it!

RT
Miami
8 reviews
Dined on 20 September 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

The restaurant is busy and reservations are needed. The food was very good and the service excellent. A bit expensive.

OT
1 review
Dined on 13 September 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Great food, amazing drinks service was very attentive inside. My only issue was with valet parking, took too long and jumped customers to serv others...

DI
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 13 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always delicious

OT
1 review
Dined on 12 September 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Bday dinner

OT
1 review
Dined on 7 September 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Fabulous food and servers, but took longer than expected.

MG
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing experience. They created a perfect coursed menu for our crew. Thank you.

JC
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was our second time returning to Puerto Rico and we knew we couldn’t visit without a trip to Santaella. The cocktails, entree, and service is always phenomenal. We tried the foie gras special - amazing! Thank you for taking such good care of us, we can’t speak more highly of you!

JR
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Outstanding service and great food.

OT
Caribbean
2 reviews
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service, presentation and ambience, however kind of loud.

M
Caribbean
15 reviews
Dined on 4 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always amazing service and fantastic food! Thanks to Jaime, Christian and Rafael!!!

DC
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on 31 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome as usual!

JC
Atlanta
9 reviews
Dined on 31 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, great service, and a vibrant crowd

OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on 31 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding service and menu selections. Best dining experience in San Juan during this visit

OT
New York Area
15 reviews
Dined on 30 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fun delicious and memorable

DB
Caribbean
4 reviews
Dined on 30 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We visit Santaella every time we vacation in Puerto Rico, it's a must. Some years we go to PR twice a year. Each time Santaella is on top of our list. The General Manager, Ray remembers us each time we visit and even where we sat the time before. Quite amazing actually. We've tried different items on the menu, everything has been over the top delicious. The wait staff is excellent. We've never had a bad experience in many years of visiting. The turn over rate is very low, I recognize the same servers year after year. Even the door man has been there for 6 years. Please go, experience the great food and service. Santaella is easy to find, while there walk around LaPlacita and enjoy the culture. Don't forget a reservation is a must, trying to visit without a reservation is next to impossible.

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