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“good for a layover, that's about it.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton San Jose Airport

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Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton San Jose Airport
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Hwy 1 Airport Blvd, Alajuela 1017, Costa Rica   |  
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Ranked #4 of 31 Hotels in Alajuela
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
40 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 157 helpful votes
“good for a layover, that's about it.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2009

I can't imagine why anyone would stay here for more than a one night layover.
This is one of those hotel complexes that's just outside the airport... In it, you'll find tons of things that cater to Americans who are afraid to venture into the city... There's a Denny's, a casino, a Hampton Inn, a Holiday Inn Express, and some car rental places. If you're not into eating Denny's, they can steer you to a nearby touristy-sounding steakhouse that has a free shuttle.

This hotel itself doesn't even try to hide the fact that it caters to American's... You walk in, and there's the typical "hello" door mat and everything else in English, despite the fact that you're in a Spanish speaking country... CNN isn't CNN International, it's beamed in regular CNN US feeds.

The hotel itself is fairly typical Hampton Inn. I would say it's very overpriced for what it is, though. Our room was upgraded to a "suite" because they didn't have any other non-smoking rooms... But their "suite" was no larger or nicer than any other Hampton Inn room I've seen. Actually I've seen others that were nicer... For the price, this place is a ripoff probably. (about $180/USD or so when we looked... We used points and it was 30,000 or so). But they can command that price I guess to the travelers who are afraid of having to look into unfamiliar territory.

We did stop into the casino. It's worth a visit to the casino, and probably the highlight of us staying here. You can play roulette where it's not a wheel, but rather a bingo ball holder.. It's hours of fun potentially, trying to figure out how the heck you convert $40 USD into a gazillion chips that are no longer valued in USD. They also had electronic roulette, but I'm pretty convinced that was rigged somehow... at least the real bingo ball version is nearly impossible to imagine how they could rig that! There were some friendly people at the casino, too.

Cabs are a flat rate $20 into the city, and it's a quick ride in (but know where you're going--don't just get in a cab and not have a destination in mind). On the return, you can negotiate or pay the meter, but the flat rate doesn't apply. (We paid $11/person=$22 USD total for the return cab). It was well worth it to take a cab ride into the city. And our earnings from the casino paid for it.

Despite being from a big city ourselves, the hotel staff kinda looked at us funny when asking about things to do downtown. Their inclination was to keep us nearby and recommended the touristy-sounding steakhouse that has a free shuttle. One girl did say that one of the restaurants we were curious to try downtown was good, but she disappeared and then nobody else quite knew the block it was on.. It all worked itself out though, the desk staff called the restaurant for us to confirm they were open and what not...

Their breakfast center was barely functional... The computers were slow, loaded with spyware, and the Internet barely worked. Printing didn't work either. Wifi was available in the hotel, but the signal wasn't available from our room.

Their breakfast sounded like the typical Hampton Inn corn-infused food... What I don't understand is.. this is a hotel that obviously caters to people on overnight layovers, yet their breakfast doesn't start until 6am. For an 8am flight (as many are around), you're SOL and have to resort to their bagged meal (which consisted of water that tasted like plastic, a really bad flavored apple, a really bad for you breakfast bar, and a muffin whose number one ingredient was sugar).

The desk staff was very friendly here though.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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836 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (74)
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English first
Denver, CO
Level Contributor
90 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 198 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2009

My husband and I stayed here 2 nights total - 1) our first night since we arrived in san jose late and 2) our very last night since we had an early flight back to CO the next morning. It is very conveniently located 5 minutes from airport. The hotel offers a free shuttle to and from airport that comes every 10-15 minutes. Front desk was friendly and all spoke English very well. There is ample parking out front and an outdoor pool. In the dining room by the front desk, they serve free breakfast every morning and it is plentiful - eggs, sausages, bread/bagels, pastries, juice, fruits, beans, rice, etc. I believe they serve free coffee and fruit all day and night.

Rooms are nice and clean. We had a king-size bed that was rather bouncy, but had clean sheets. Rooms were fairly new-- carpet was in great condition. TV with movie channel, coffeemaker, microwave, hairdryer, clock, and phone in room. They offer FREE LONG DISTANCE CALLS from rooms. No safe box in rooms. Heater/A/C in room. Weak wireless signal in rooms but strong wireless (free) in lobby area. They do have a business center with 2 computers that guests can use for free. Fitness center inside hotel as well. There are 4 or 5 floors - for more quiet rooms, ask for a room that faces the back.

Threre is no restaurant in the hotel, but believe it or not, there is a Denny's restaurant (pricey for a Denny's) and a casino right next to the hotel. The casino has a restaurant as well. Remember tap water is safe to drink. You can change currency at the hotel - slightly better rate than san jose airport. Casino also has an ATM machine you can use to take cash out. We did not venture out to downtown San Jose except to find a gas station near the hotel. It didn't look all that safe around the hotel area.

Great place to unwind from your flight before you start out on your adventure. I highly recommend it for an overnighter. If you want to rent a car, try Sixt - we used them and we were very pleased with their staff - very professional, all spoke English, and helpful. We had our car delivered and picked up from Hampton Inn - no hassles. They even give you a free cell phone to use -- only cost is 50 cents/minute if you use it. Get a 4x4 if you're going to venture out to monteverde area- you'll need it! We recommend buying their insurance just in case something happens to the vehicle.

If you're going to drive, beware of cops in and around San Jose. They like to pull over tourists and ask them for money. If you get pulled over, ask the cop to see mileage reading on their radar gun and REFUSE to give them any money. If the mileage is over 10 miles over the speed limit, just ask them for a ticket. We got pulled over on Highway 1 by cops and luckily, we got off on a warning even when my husband did not have his driver's license. My husband asked to see mileage on radar gun (which was way over what cop 'claimed' the speed limit was). He also just demanded a ticket from the cop so the cop just let us go.

One more thing, my husband left his pillow behind on our first night at Hampton Inn. We called the hotel 2 days later to hold pillow until our last night in Costa Rica. When we checked in on our last night, they had his pillow in storage ---- we were very pleased with most of the staff.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montana
Level Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2009

This was the perfect place to stay for our last night in Costa Rica! It is very close to the airport and the shuttle runs 24 hours a day. We had to leave too early to have breakfast at the hotel, but it looked like they had a very nice dining area. The rooms are very clean. The beds are comfortable. The staff was very helpful. I was concerned about the early wake-up call..... the front desk called our room 3 times until my husband spoke into the phone. (He was just lifting up the receiver and dropping it). So, just know...the front desk WILL make sure you are awakened. There is a nice business center and the rooms are equipped with a good size desk for those that need to work. We chose to go downtown San Jose for the first two nights so we could see the city. If you are just flying in or out and need a great place to stay, the Hampton Inn is great!

  • Liked — Convenience to the airport
  • Disliked — Lack of restaurants nearby. Just a Denny's which surprisingly had high prices.
  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West of Boston
Level Contributor
46 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2009

We stayed here when we arrived at San Jose at midnight. Free shuttle bus from the airport was easy 5 minute drive. The staff were friendly and the room was clean and comfortable.

  • Liked — convenience to airport
  • Disliked — N/A
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow, Scotland
Level Contributor
83 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 153 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 26, 2008

Look no further if you need a comfortable and convenient place to stay near San Jose International airport. The Hampton Inn offers spacious and modern rooms with comfortable beds and all the amenities you need for a short stay. There is no room service, but there is free WiFi and internet access, complimentary coffee 24/7 and an excellent complimentary breakfast which is more extensive than it's "continental" description. Shuttles run every 10 minutes to the airport throughout the day, taking 5 minutes at most and there is extensive free parking, as well as being immediately adjacent to most of the major car rental offices. Staff are friendly and helpful and overall, the hotel provides tremendous value way above its rating.

  • Liked — Convenience and amenities
  • Disliked — Location in industrial area
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wichita, KS
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2008

Staying at the hotel for one night to leave in the next morning by private transport to Manuel Antonio. The hotel really is in an excellent location with very close proximity to the airport. There is another Holiday Inn property close by. And yes, the Denny's is in walking distance within the properties' grounds. There is also a casino in the same area with other restaraunts.

The room is no different than any other Hampton Inn hotel that you would stay at in the US. If you are a frequent traveler, you may not realize you're in another country when you wake up in the morning until you turn on the television (although you can find US stations, such as CNN). Room was clean and as expected. There was also a note addressed to me in my room from the manager informing me about my ability to 'double dip' with miles and hotel points since I had listed my airline frequent flier but not the hotel rewards number when I booked the room.

Staff were very helpful and friendly and are fluent in English. There is a small selection of snacks, drinks and toiletries available for which you can pay with US or Colonies at fairly reasonable prices (for a hotel).

The only downside of the hotel is the cost of the room. With my AAA rate, the base was $131 and with taxes it was $154 for the night. This is the same that you would pay in the US and there are far many less expensive hotels in the area (or much nicer for the same price).

Overall, if you are looking for comfortable and familiar surroundings in a hotel with a decent 'free American style' breakfast buffet and don't mind the price for the sake of convienence, then this is a good choice.

  • Liked — Meets brand expectations; good location to airport and within walking distance to restaraunts
  • Disliked — cost/value relative to other hotels in the area
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Level Contributor
62 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2008

We stayed at the Hampton San Jose Airport location on the last night of our Costa Rican trip - mainly because we had an early flight out the next day.

The hotel was clean and appeared to be well-maintained. The front desk staff was outstanding - they checked us in promptly and assisted us in ordering room food delievery for dinner. We had a refrigerator, microwave and coffee pot, plus wired internet service. The internet service functioned well during our stay.

The area around the hotel is nothing exciting. There is a Rosti-Pollo Chicken restaurant (very good, great prices) and a Denny's. We had lunch at Rosti Pollo and Denny's delivered dinner. There is also a casino but we decided not to donate to their coffers.

The free shuttle to the airport took 5 minutes. We were able to eat breakfast before we left, which was well-done. Overall, the Hampton is a great place to end or start a vacation - as usual, the Hilton standards are observed.

  • Liked — Close to airport and great staff
  • Disliked — Scary neighborhood to walk in
  • Stayed November 2008
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton San Jose Airport

Address: Hwy 1 Airport Blvd, Alajuela 1017, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Alajuela
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in Alajuela
#3 Romantic Hotel in Alajuela
#4 Family Hotel in Alajuela
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton San Jose Airport 3*
Number of rooms: 100
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
An airport hotel with everything you need...welcome to the Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton San José - Airport. If you're looking for a hotel in the Central Valley, home of San José, Costa Rica’s capital city, look no further. Our Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton™ is the most conveniently located hotel in the area, just five minutes away from the International Airport, one block away from rental car return centers, and with easy access the Inter-American Highway (which transports you to beautiful beaches, national parks, and free trade areas). ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hampton Inn & Suites By Hilton San Jose Airport Hotel Alajuela
Hampton Inn And Suites By Hilton San Jose Airport
Hampton Inn Alajuela
Alajuela Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn San Jose
San Jose Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn & Suites By Hilton San Jose Airport Costa Rica/Alajuela

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