All of the positive reviews here on trip advisor are on the money. Pura Vida was our first and last stop as well as a midway stop on our Costa Rica honeymoon. It was the perfect place for a "home base." We didn't have to deal with downtown San Jose as the hotel is in the suburb of Alajuela, a close ride from the airport. We left some of our luggage while we went rafting for 3 days which was perfect. Although Berni and Nhi were away while we were there, their other employees (esp. Rebecca) were more than accommodating, giving us room upgrades when available, helping us with dinner suggestions, and serving us that delicious Pura Vida breakfast we heard so much about. The rooms were very nice, EXTREMELY clean- no AC but totally not needed. The gardens are, as others have said, like a little oasis in the city. Read the positive reviews- they say it all. Pura Vida is wonderful.
YES they have dogs- they are big but harmless and we love dogs so we had no problem with them. They wander free on the grounds so if you are deathly afraid of dogs, they could deter you. However, they are not jumping licking dogs and are very sweet.
NO Pura Vida is NOT the Hilton. You can hear street traffic, neighborhood dogs, and roosters. It got pretty cool at night so shutting the window with the ceiling fan on was just fine for us. Pura Vida IS the real Costa Rican experience, with the food, the staff, the artwork, the casitas, and the people. (yes, there are modern amenities- hair dryer, fridge, internet in the lobby, alarm clocks, etc) I travel to experience a country, not to stay in a carbon copy hotel room that I could find anywhere. So, in conclusion, if you want AC, TV, and ugly carpet, stay at a chain hotel. If you want to experience Costa Rica at its best, stay at Pura Vida.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Pura Vida Hotel is located 4km north of the SJO International airport - we provide a free taxi pickup for international arrivals. Breakfast is included and an excellent dinner is available with reservations (or late meals for late arrivals). Touring services include car rentals delivered here, private vans and as much touring advice as you wish - we are experts on Costa Rica. We have arrangements with Toyota Car Rental for deals on car rentals. Our idea is simply that this is a place we would like to stay at when we travel. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Pura Vida Alajuela
- Hotel Pura Vida
- Pura Vida Hotel Costa Rica/Alajuela