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“Central Location” 5 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 #44 of 86 Hotels in San Jose
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
90 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Central Location”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2013

We stayed at the Gran Hotel on 3 separate nights on our recent trip. Each night we were a different budget priced room but each time the room was very clean and comfortable. The price included a breakfast buffet which was very good. Location wise you couldn't ask for more, close to museums and restaurants and right across from the Teatro Nacionale we could walk wherever we wanted to and feel safe. Definitely a good place to stay.

Room Tip: We had 3 different rooms on 3 different sides of the hotel, all were fine.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank westcoasthiker1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexander M, Guest Relations Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
Thank you very much for writing your review about our hotel. The next time you want to stay again in our hotel, you can contact us to: mercadeoyventas@grandhotelcostarica.com with great pleasure I will help you personally with the theme of the rates so you can choose the one that suits you in your next stay.
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840 reviews from our community

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Espoo, Finland
Level Contributor
63 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

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.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Jukka1961
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexander M, Guest Relations Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
Thank you for share your review. There are two important things that is good to know for the next time you want to visit us; all our rooms have the particularity that are different even in the same category as it is the case of the Standard room where you stayed. Moreover, the hotel possesses portable air conditioners in selected rooms. Next time you want to visit the city of San Jose feel free to contact me at this email address: mercadeoyventas@grandhotelcostarica.com and gladly I'll get you a more spacious room with air conditioning in Standard category.
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Egham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
26 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

This hotel is perfectly situated for exploring San Jose. It backs onto Central Avenue which is the main street of the city. There is a beautiful plaza just outside the hotel which contains a lovely old theatre and is always buzzing with life. Most of the city sights are within an easy stroll.
The hotel staff are very friendly and helpful, the breakfast room is on the 5th floor with a great view over the city and the breakfast itself is very good. There is free internet access and a free gym near the breakfast room.
The hotel overall has a vintage feel to it which I found refreshing - the downside is that there is no built-in air conditioning and, if you need it, it consists of a very noisy plug-in unit. All the rooms we used were clean and of a decent size.
There is a piano bar and restaurant by the hotel lobby, I did not use it but it appeared to be popular.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Joe H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexander M, Guest Relations Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
Thank you for sharing your review, the next time you want to visit us enjoy a lunch or dinner or our restaurant shared with the best live music (piano - Jazz) with a unique and very relaxing atmosphere.
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New York City, New York
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2013

We stayed in downtown San Jose for one day and this place was the perfect hub for a quick lap around the main tourist spots; Teatro National, Mercado Central, and Correos de Costa Rica.

The rooms we small but comfy. We did not have a/c but were able to open a window and had a ceiling fan that worked fine. There was also hot water for a shower.

There is a great restaurant/cafe on the ground floor to have cocktails and good food. Breakfast was served on a higher floor that had a lovely view of the city and the food was perfect (eggs, meat, fruit, etc).

Everyone who worked here was really nice. In general, the downtown area was a little shady but we felt safe at this hotel.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank KAJ K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexander M, Guest Relations Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
Thank you for writing your review about our hotel, do you know that Yes we have portable air conditioners in selected rooms of our hotel. The next time you want to visit us, if you wish you can send an e-mail to this address: mercadeoyventas@grandhotelcostarica.com and I'll happy get you a room with air conditioning to make your stay as pleasant as possible.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
89 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2013 via mobile

I know this hotel was only 100$ for the night but it really isn't even worth that much. First off the rooms smell like old mold. Our tv is plugged into the wall with a faulty extension cord that is wrapped in duct tape, can you say fire hazard. The walls are so thin that you can hear everything. We can hear the conversation not only next door but across the hall. Our room has zero AC just an old fan that sweaks every time it goes around. Glad that our stay here was just for one night.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank P0LL0RIC0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexander M, Guest Relations Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
Thank you for your review, we are going to keep in mind your complaints and to take action as soon as possible repair the facilities in the room and that this does not happen again. I know that the hotel has Yes portable air conditioners in selected rooms and in addition our rooms have the particularity that all are completely different
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Boston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2013

We stayed here recently and the hotel is as described, step into the past. Our room was comfortable although the stand alone air con unit was extremely noisy. We were part of a large group and the buffet meals provided left a lot to be desired, we then tried the a la carte restaurant and found the food excellent, perhaps our tour group were too keen on price and therefore the buffet was done down to a price and not up to a standard.
We overlooked the plaza and found the bustle of the entertainers and hawkers a delight to watch and hear. We would certainly stay here again for the atmosphere which is lacking in most modern hotels.

Room Tip: If you don't like noise use the provided ear plugs
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
Helpful?
1 Thank Don D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexander M, Guest Relations Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
We thank you for taking your time and write a review of our hotel. Regarding to the breakfast buffet I am very surprised of your description since our breakfast buffet is one of the best in the area which offers a wide variety of fruits, typical food of Costa Rica, cheese, granola, cereal, oats, milk, chocolate, pancakes, eggs, jams, tea, coffee, etc. In addition our guests support the high quality of our breakfast buffet in this page of Tripadvisor. Do you know that our hotel was named historical - architectural heritage and for this reason we must retain its classic and elegant style without changing your infrastructure. At the same time we invite you to staying with us the next time you visit the city of San Jose.
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Telford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
93 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2013

We visited The Gran Hotel on the first day of our holiday in Costa Rica, having visited once before for lunch. The hotel is over 80 years old, elegantly designed and authentically finished. The location, overlooking the National Theatre has to be the most endearing aspect of San Jose. Our rooms, which overlooked the city/square/theatre were tastefully furnished and impeccably clean. The hotel overall was just what it said on the tin - grand. We had dinner despite arriving late, a mixture of seafoods, salads, meats and salsas - absolutely delicious. If you like sterile new Holiday Inn style hotels, this is perhaps not the hotel for you and you could stay at an airport hotel. If you love fine architecture, great views, period features and great food the the Gran Hotel is perfect. It was very noisy outside the hotel but it is in the absolute epicentre of Costa Rica's capital city - so a little less sleep was a small price to pay for the wonderful experience and morning views.

Room Tip: Superior rooms on the 3rd floor were spacious
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank GeorgieGirl0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexander M, Guest Relations Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
Thank you very much for your review, which describes very well not only our hotel but the large environments and life that you can breathe in the unique surroundings of the hotel. Now we invite you to stay with us at the hotel on your next visit and thus you can enjoy our music concerts live instrumental (piano - jazz) in a spectacular and very relaxing atmosphere.
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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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