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Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

Rural MN
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Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

Hi, I would like to stay in San Jose the night before we fly out of CR. The web site for the Gran Hotel sais this:

WE NO LONGER TAKE RESERVATIONS FOR THIS HOTEL. WE RECOMMEND YOU LOOK INTO OTHER OPTIONS FOR YOUR STAY IN SAN JOSÉ, COSTA RICA.

Although expedia is still taking bookings. Does anybody know what is going on?

Tampa, FL
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for San Jose, Costa Rica
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1. Re: Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

I know the Gran Via, which is across the mall from the Gran, HAD closed but has since reopened under new management. However this is the first I've heard anything about the Gran itself closing. In fact, when I was in SJ just a couple of weeks ago, I went by there a few times and the place always seem to be jumping. If they are closing, I doubt they'd be closing for good. It could be closing for a LOOONNNGGG overdue remodeling if they haven't taken care of that already. The place has long had a reputation of faded glory and being really run down inside. In fact, why even stay there if there's any doubt with so many better places to stay downtown?

The other possibility is that it is transitioning to new management just as the Gran Via did. In fact, I've heard that a local company representing Rainforest Resort & Casino had made a $15 million offer with the owner of the 76-year-old Gran Hotel which he turned down. That group is also trying to gain approval to put up a gargantuan, 18-story, $200 million “Las Vegas style” luxury resort on the site of the current commercial center that is nearby on the north side of the plaza, which would be really horrible if it went through since it would overshadow the historic Gran and Teatro Nacional. Here is a link to the story in the December 8-14 issue of the Tico Times (not sure how long the link will be good for):

www.ticotimes.net/business.htm

San Francisco...
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2. Re: Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

It's a FAKE website. The real web address for the Gran Hotel is http://www.grandhotelcostarica.com/

Tampa, FL
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3. Re: Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

This is getting a little more interesting. Although Frozen didn't specify exactly what website he visited, I did my own google search and came up with www.granhotelcr.com. I visited that site and saw the same message he referred to at the bottom (also curiously, the phone numbers given were 506-000-0000). The fine print at the bottom also listed Calypso Corp. as the copyright holder and ActiveInternet.com as the site designer. So I did another search for Calypso Costa Rica and came up with one for a Calypso Tours that turned out to be also designed by ActiveInternet.com.

Finally I also checked out the link that Sean just provided. Besides the fact that they indeed seem to be taking reservation at that site, I noted their announcement on that site that they recently "signed an agreement with one of the best and most experienced Tour Operators in the country, Swiss Travel"

I suspect that this is not so much a case as the other site being a fake as this just being a change of 3rd party agents who handle the reservations for the hotel. That old site seems to be more of a "ghost site" than an outright fake since it probably once did handle reservations. The curious thing is I'm not sure why they didn't just take it down or if they left it up why they changed it to just cryptically say they weren't taking reservations (which is true as far as that goes) rather than being a bit more helpful and mentioning the new site that was.

This goes to show that even when you visit what seems to be a hotel's website, you still may not really be dealing with that hotel directly but a 3rd agent middleman that handles the on-line reservations for them. I've run into this before at another downtown SJ hotel. In that case, reservations taken on-line were not always recognized when the visitor showed up. For all I know it may have been similar problems why Gran is no longer using Calypso. I do know that I never rely purely on on-line forms and try to call the hotels I plan to stay at directly in advance to confirm any reservations.

San Isidro de El...
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4. Re: Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

I found the same infof as Prolijo about the Calypso tour company not taking reservations anymore.

Darn......I was hoping they were going to do a much needed renovation. I love sitting in the sidewalk cafe but wouldn't stay there.

Back in Costa Rica
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5. Re: Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

I think it would be great if someone bought it and converted it to really nice apartments. San Jose would be so much better if people actually went back to living in the city. Just a thought.

6. Re: Gran Hotel, San Jose-Are they closing or something?

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Removed on: 12:23 am, August 19, 2009