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“festivel of lights parade” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Gran Hotel Costa Rica

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Gran Hotel Costa Rica
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Central and Second Ave. Between 1 & 3, San Jose 527-1000, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #40 of 85 Hotels in San Jose
Cartago, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
40 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“festivel of lights parade”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2012

stayed from dec 14-16. overall, i enjoyed my stay. i just love old hotels. such character,well perserve. the only problem i had was a constant noise outside due to a damage crosswalk single. i enjoyed the food,especially morning buffect. also enjoyed my dinner in their resturant. upkeep for this hotel is reasonally good since it was built around 1930. i would like to suggest they open the fifth floor so all the guests can enjoy the parade. good view to see the parade.

Room Tip: to view the parade,i stayed in room 439. i believe room 440 has a better view
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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745 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (130)
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colorado
Level Contributor
51 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2012

This is a Grand OLD hotel. If you like the charm of the old hotel you will like this one. This is not the modern chain where once inside you no longer remember what city you are in. The bath is old but works properly. A little more water pressure would not be amiss.
The National Theater is across the square. Last night we were treated to the Festival of Light Parade outside our window. A lot of noise but is was wonderful. We were dog tired but watched until we could no longer keep awake. Excellent location to serve as a base to see the city. The buffet breakfast is very good,even though they don't have decaf coffee in this country. If you can sit is a section being cared for by Sr. Alexis Pereira. He is an old style gentleman who is a master of his trade. He makes you feel that you are his only concern.

Room Tip: we liked our room overlooking the square but there may be city noise.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Level Contributor
32 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 13, 2012 via mobile

I got into the hotel at about 10:30 pm after flying all day. It was unique in the sense that they still used old fashioned keys in lieu of cards. It was nice sleeping with the windows wide open and hearing the sounds of the plaza below. The National Theatre next door is beautiful. Contrary to what the website said, they do have A/C, but it wasn't needed this time of year. In fact, I prefer the ceiling fan the room had. Breakfast was decent, served on the 5th floor and I sat at one of the tables outside, which was quite refreshing. I would stay again for a night, but not an extended stay.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
31 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2012 via mobile

Central location, free wifi + computer room, free gym, fridge in room, cable tv, a/c, great buffet breakfast, reliable hot water, nice and clean old fashioned hotel. (thumbs up)

Apart from the enthusiastic guy who took our bags to our room when we first got there the service was minimal. The front desk refused to hold our bags for the day when we did a trip, unless we paid full price for another night ! They laughed when we asked for the hair dryer that wasnt in its holder in the room then gave us one from under the front desk and forget getting help from the depressed, too-busy-doing NOTHING-to-deal-with-tourists in foyer tour agency (she missed our business).
(thumbs down)

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

We stayed in this hotel for 5 nights and loved it. It was within walking distance of the gold museum, jade museum, market, church and numerous other attractions along with shopping, It was about $4 - $6 in a cab to the mall depending on traffic.
The lady at the tour desk went above and beyond to arrange tours for us and all the staff were great! We found it noisy on the first night which was Saturday night but after that the square was a lot quieter in the evenings for sleeping. The room was great and had windows facing out in two directions which was wonderful for watching people in the square.
If I am ever back in San Jose you can be sure I will stay at this hotel again.

Room Tip: If you have problems sleeping with noise pay a little more and get a room with a/c. The location of...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Kitcat22
Level Contributor
97 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

I love classy old hotels, and this 1930 Historic-Architectural Landmark should have been one of them. Gran Hotel was THE place to stay in early San Jose. It is located amid national monuments, museums, squares, and pedestrian streets (read no night traffic noise).

I've posted pictures that show my main objections: The promised "Bedroom with one or two Queen size beds" had double beds with remarkably old, worn, hard mattresses.

The wall over the headboards is dirty, like years of dusting the headboards has led to buildup of grime. It shows up in the pic as an inch of brown/black filth, wipes off with damp washcloth.

The bathroom light switch is grimy, as is the door casing near it going into the bathroom.

Desk staff, esp Mr. Luis Martinez, was surly. First, they couldn't find my registration. I provided them the confirmation #, and they said to come back at 2pm. Told me I could NOT check in early. When I got to my room (they eventually did find one for me with early check in), my sink's hot water faucet spun freely, not turning on the water. I reported it to Mr. Martinez, and went out for 3 hours, came back and the faucet was still not fixed. As I walked out of the room to see him again, I came across two service staff, told them the problem, and within 5 minutes a maintenance technician was fixing my faucet. I give the service and maintenance staff 3 or 4 stars. Mr. Martinez gets zero stars.

I'd expect this lack of attention to detail from a 1 or 2 star old hotel in el centro, but surely not from a hotel that brags about being the nation's only Patrimonio Historico and charges 4 star rates. I should have read addie00063's review.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
72 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2012 via mobile

The hotel is clean and has a lot of history. Our room was small but ok by Costa Rican standards. Had an AC unit and was comfortable.

Location is good for access to the main museums etc, but feels really unsafe in general. 3 different tour reps told us to be wary of our belongings when out in the day, and definately not to leave the hotel at night!!!

The major complaint I have is the set of traffic lights right outside which made a really loud chirping noise every time the lights are in red! Our room was on the front of the hotel and the windows wouldn't shut properly so all you could hear all night were these traffic lights which made it a terrible nights sleep!

The hotel is great for a couple of nights, but any longer than that and you'll need to make sure you get a room at the back if the hotel.

5th floor breakfast restaurant has amazing views over SJ.

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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 Gran Hotel Costa Rica

Address: Central and Second Ave. Between 1 & 3, San Jose 527-1000, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of San Jose > San Jose Metro > San Jose
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Casino Hotel in San Jose
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Gran Hotel Costa Rica 3*
Number of rooms: 107
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the absence of a major first-class hotel in the country, the Constitutional Congress of the Republic of Costa Rica enacted the law number 34 on November 22, 1928, which was actually a contract subscribed on October 3, 1928, by and between the first owner of the hotel, Dr. Luis Paulino Jimenez Ortiz, and Cleto Gonzalez Viquez, President of the Republic. It granted a series of fiscal benefits to the contractor, in exchange for the construction of the hotel. There was also a provision according to which the Government was granted for twenty years the right to have at their disposal for free two apartments at the hotel for lodging foreign diplomatic representatives of extraordinary nature. Grand Hotel Costa Rica is today operated by the Elite Hotels and Resorts Costa Rica hotel chain. It is the only hotel in Costa Rica that was declared a historical and architectural monument by the government of Costa Rica. Located in the heart of the San Jose between national monuments, squares, museums and pedestrian streets, the Gran Hotel Costa Rica is just a few steps away from the cultural landmarks and entertainment venues. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gran Hotel San Jose
Gran Hotel Costa Rica San Jose

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