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“TripAdvisor reviewers were right on, again!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Santo Tomas

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Hotel Santo Tomas
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Avenue 7 Between Streets 3 and 5 | 250 Meters West from INS Building, San Jose, Costa Rica   |  
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Hotel amenities
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Free Hot Breakfast & WI-F
Ranked #9 of 85 hotels in San Jose
Durham, North Carolina
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
102 helpful votes 102 helpful votes
“TripAdvisor reviewers were right on, again!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013

Before we chose the Hotel Santo Tomas, we read all the reviews on TripAdvisor, as we now do before traveling anywhere. Once again, our thoughts on this delightful and inexpensive boutique hotel were mirrored by others who have stayed there and been welcomed by the genial host and owner, Thomas. Rarely do you get a personal welcome from a hotel owner. Thomas, who has lived in North Carolina like us, was there every day of our week long stay to see that everything was good and we were comfortable. (Ask him about his varied life!) He and his staff were always ready with suggestions as to where to sightsee or go for more physical activities (ziplining and white-water rafting are big). The hotel staff were all friendly, the room comfortable and cleaned daily, and the free breakfast dining area provided a nice way to meet some of the other guests each morning and swap stories. The WI-FI is excellent, everyone seemed to have an iPad or laptop. It was great to just sit back and check email, play word games, solitaire, or whatever (while resting up from your sightseeing !).

The location is conveniently within walking distance of most of the interesting places in old downtown San Jose. We recommend the city van tour, also. The front desk folks are helpful with arranging that and any other tours or car rental. The stairs to the second floor rooms are steep, though my wife and I and my brother all made numerous ups and downs over the week and considered that our exercise (didn't go into the nice exercise room!) The upstairs rooms are newer and cost just a bit more, worth it for the nice balcony or terrace you have, with comfy chairs/sofas. The large terrace is covered, enjoys cool breezes, and you don't need AC in the rooms because it's always 60-80 degrees day or night! Thank you, Thomas, Carlos, and staff, for an enjoyable week! Highly recommended as a good value, with great service.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
AdvisorHST, Owner at Hotel Santo Tomas, responded to this review, January 28, 2013
Hola Mr and Mrs Goodwin, It was wonderful having you and friends stay with us here. I really enjoy being there in the breakfast area and meeting clients and hearing their stories , sharing mine and helping in any way possible. Carlos Santana says it the best ( Be nice to Someone) I try to live it everyday !!! It's great you had such a wonderful experience here in Costa Rica and I hope to see everyone again in the not too distant future. A big Thank You from : Thomas
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554 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (157)
Date | Rating
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English first
Sudbury, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

We chose this hotel sight unseen and were very pleased. The welcome received from Miguel-a charming, efficient young man- who checked us in was replicated by other cheerful employees and by the Owner. Our first room was in the historic section of the hotel, after which we chose to move to a balcony room in the new part, overlooking the swimming pool and terrace. The location of the hotel is close to museums, restaurants, and the downtown shopping area. We have previously stayed in several hotels in San Jose, all to our liking, but have booked to return to this one because of its friendliness and its location.
Dr. Joan and Dr. Graeme Mount, Canada

  • Stayed January 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AdvisorHST, Owner at Hotel Santo Tomas, responded to this review, January 28, 2013
Hi Dr. Joan and Dr. Graeme, Well what can I say , thumbs up from two doctors says it all about cleanliness and your other great comments about my staff just tops off your fine review. I genuinely appreciate your kind words about my staff especially Miguel, he is a fine young man providing wonderful service along with the rest of my team. Our balcony rooms located in the new section upstairs, have volcano views and are bright and airy. Free Wi-Fi is everywhere and all guests have to do is log in to the strongest signal from one of four different routers strategically placed through the hotel, all using the same password. Again a heartfelt thank you from Thomas
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Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
42 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013 via mobile

I booked one night in the Hotel Santo Tomas upon my arrival in San Jose. There seems to be a choice of either very expensive or very cheap hotels in San Jose with not a lot of good mid-range hotels.
Pros: It's an older hotel with character - nice old furnishings tastefully arranged. Those used to typical North American hotels will be disappointed. It has a restaurant, gym, pool and jacuzzi. There's also lots of little nooks with sofas or patio space for those looking for a bit of privacy. There's patios on the ground floor, an enclosed patio on the second floor, and balconies on some rooms on the third floor, so one can enjoy the great weather. My single room was small, but had a renovated bathroom, flatscreen TV and lockable cupboard for valuables. Location is good - about 4 blocks to the heart of downtown. While some have said the area is a bit sketchy at night, I would say that that would hold true for most areas of San Jose. There's a gleaming 4-star Holiday Inn a block away, so it can't be that bad an area. Free wifi and friendly staff are also pluses.
Cons: it's located on a fairly noisy street, and walls are pretty thin, so earplugs would be helpful to have. No aircon in my room, just a ceiling fan (I didn't need one, but could imagine a steamy summer's night may benefit from aircon). Breakfast is included but it's pretty sparse. The restaurant menu is unexciting and it's cheaper to eat across the street where there is a local restaurant and a bar that is cheaper. Bring your own toiletries - they only supply little bars of soap.

Overall, I was pretty happy with my choice, and would certainly stay here again if I return to San Jose. It is good value for San Jose.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
AdvisorHST, Owner at Hotel Santo Tomas, responded to this review, January 28, 2013
Hola Rich Peasant from Canada, The title of your review ( “Good value hotel in the heart of San Jose” ) and your Trip Advisor name signify that we are providing a champagne experience on a beer budget. Hey who doesn't want that ! In San Jose, we are located at 3600 ft. elevation and you did stay here during our summer . This is as steamy as it gets. The 15 foot high ceilings along with the fans create just the right temperature. My new rooms located upstairs are just a few dollars more and are very quiet. I was disappointed that you did not find any plates on our menu for the one night you stayed interesting. We offer a broad selection of dishes such as Beef, Pasta, Chicken, Fish and Pork.. Many guests find the prices combined with the portions and quality to be an outstanding value. Manuel my chef of more than 30 years experience has worked at the Marriott and Intercontinental to name two fine establishments. We are not as cheap as the soda in the front, don't load our food with salt and pork fat and clients will have plenty beans and rice before their trip is over. Wonderful to hear that you would certainly stay here again and I hope you will give my restaurant El Oasis a chance next time. Warmest Regards Thomas
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Key West, Florida
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

Stayed at the hotel for 6 days and found every aspect of the service superb from the staff at the front desk to the housekeeping staff to the restaurant staff to the on-site owners. Exceptionally clean. Knowledgeable friendly staff. Short walk to the heart of San Jose. Very safe neighborhood. Very good restaurant on site but large variety close by also. Our favorite ..the Colombian restaurant right across the street.

Room Tip: They're all nice and even the smallest seems very large with the high ceilings throughout. Stay...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AdvisorHST, Owner at Hotel Santo Tomas, responded to this review, January 28, 2013
Hi KWPaul, Your title of ( “Great Location and Great Value” ) I think is something most travelers in my hotel category are looking for and I am happy we did not disappoint you. Again thank you for your most excellent review and safe travels ! Thomas
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Tacoma, Washington
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 21, 2013 via mobile

The owner is an American expat that built it 25 years ago. He has a great knoiwledge of the area for the first timers as I was. It is not a 5 star hotel but the care and kindness of the staff is. The hotel is clean and severs a great free breakfast. I will go back !

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AdvisorHST, Owner at Hotel Santo Tomas, responded to this review, January 22, 2013
All Right my Man in Tacoma ! Thanks so much for the kind words and fine review . Looking forward to your return and we will keep it clean along with the 5 star service. Safe Travels Thomas
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013 via mobile

As a single woman traveling, I was a little nervous of taking off and coming to Costa Rica. The staff at hotel Santo Tomas took all of my fears and hesitations away. Ricardo"s warm welcome and happy personality immediately set me at ease. Doris helped me through a tour mix up and made sure that I was both taken care of and able to go on the tour... THANK YOU! Tomas the vibrant owner who created the hotel has a personality that naturally draws people to him, thorough knowledge of the country and a willingness to share it to make travelers stays both easy and fun.
The food in the restaurant was always fresh and delicious. My only warning is that the servings are big so you had better come hungry.
My room was always clean and obviously well cared for. People here clearly take pride in their work and as a first time visitor that was very appreciated!
As for noise, I slept the first night for eleven hours with no ear plugs and heard nothing.
Visiting Costa Rica was my dream. Thank you to all the staff at the Hotel Santo Tomas for helping to make my dream into a reality and for making me feel at home! I can"t wait to come back and would highly recommend this hotel!!!!!
Monica

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AdvisorHST, Owner at Hotel Santo Tomas, responded to this review, January 21, 2013
Hi Monica, Outstanding ! you had such a memorable and happy experience here with us, exactly what I am striving to do with everyone of our guests. All of my staff works very hard as a team to create the environment that you enjoyed. We are really a safe haven for any travelers that requires assistance of any type and personalized service, something missing from so much of our life today. Everything you described is greatly appreciated by myself and staff. I have alerted them to your fine review and most have read it and send their personal thanks to you . Warmest Regards Thomas
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Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013

I was pleasantly surprised with the hotel and especially the restaurant which is under advertised . Chef Manuel provides a wide array of excellent dishes. A must is the sea bass which is provided several different ways...all delicious!

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AdvisorHST, Owner at Hotel Santo Tomas, responded to this review, January 20, 2013
Hola Freddy, that is a nice term to be pleasantly surprised, many clients say just that , from walking into the hotel to the fine food and drinks provided by Manuel ( 58 years old and has worked at the Marriott and Intercontinental just to name a few ! ) along with Carlo's drinks. We don't want to forget either my well trained front desk staff consisting of Miguel. Jose, Mauricio and last but not least Doris. On service 24/7 to assist with any thing our clients may require from bus schedules to car rentals and full tour services. Again Freddy a big Thank you from Thomas Warmest Regards
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Additional Information about Hotel Santo Tomas

Address: Avenue 7 Between Streets 3 and 5 | 250 Meters West from INS Building, San Jose, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of San Jose > San Jose Metro > San Jose
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Romantic Hotel in San Jose
#7 Family Hotel in San Jose
#15 Business Hotel in San Jose
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Santo Tomas 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Great downtown location in San Jose, Costa Rica . Hotel Santo Tomas provides Free Hot cooked to order breakfast, FREE Wi-Fi 10 Mbps, security box, swimming pool, Hot Jacuzzi, Gym, secure on site parking and restaurant/bar El Oasis ( Happy Hour 4 to 7 PM Carlos Bartender ) closed on Mondays. Only four blocks from San Jose, Central Avenue and an easy stroll to most local attractions. Offering 30 non smoking rooms and has been newly renovated and expanded. Also available 24/7 : tour, travel & car rental services, currency exchange and laundry for our guests. Come and enjoy our wonderful open air gardens,flowers and covered terraces all to enjoy the volcano views here at Hotel Santo Tomas in San Jose, Costa Rica. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Santo Tomas Costa Rica/San Jose

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