This hotel has seen three U.S. presidents, Pele, Tyrone Power etc. It was built in a grand style of the 1930's and is located smack bang in the centre of the city, within a very short walking distance from the main attractions of the city, Teatro National, Mercado Central, post office and the Gold Museum. Also it has the pedestrian shopping streets just around the corner.
The breakfast buffet, included in my rate, was the best during my whole three week trip in Panama and Costa Rica.
So far, so good.
I guess the main issue is that the hotel, being so old, had small rooms. Of course I could have booked a larger room but then the price became an issue. I had booked a "standard room". Guess you do get what you pay for. It is also pretty big so the staff remained somewhat remote compared to smaller places. The biggest problem was the non-existence of a/c. It did have one of those propellers (ceiling fan in the official lingo) in the ceiling which helped a bit. But overall the nights were pretty uncomfortable.
As a whole I would say that it was fine for maximum three nights, not for longer stays. (One can of course ask if there is any need to stay in San Jose for any longer period?) The location and breakfast sure made for some of the downsides but all in all I just might look for a smaller alternative the next time I stay in the city.
- 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