HOTELS: The Key Man

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Puerto Rico's historic capital of San Juan busily prepared for a fiesta. At Governor Muñoz Marin's mansion, servants made ready for a party, washing the fine crystal, putting a high polish on the silverware. On traffic-jammed Ponce de León Avenue stood a huge welcome sign: Bien-venidos. In the plaza, the excited chatter was all about the opening this week of Puerto Rico's finest hotel, which islanders hope will be a rich new source of revenue and prestige for their economy.

The new, ten-story Caribe Hilton stood dazzling and white on a...

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