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“Paradise in Costa Rica: one of the highlights of our trip”
Review of Hotel Buena Vista

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Hotel Buena Vista
Ranked #4 of 27 Hotels in Alajuela
Certificate of Excellence
Flossmoor, Illinois
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Paradise in Costa Rica: one of the highlights of our trip”
Reviewed July 10, 2011

Costa Rica is a beautiful country with so many choices of things to do. Unfortunately, many of them involve 4-5 hour road trips, which will provide spectacular scenic views, but many opportunities for car sickness. Flying in to Juan Santamaria Intl Airport, taking a 15-20min shuttle to Hotel BuenaVista, and daytripping from there to Poas, Irazu, coffee plantations, San Jose, etc would be one way to avoid the road trips. Not to mention the spectacular views the hotel has to offer itself. I definitely will consider this for our next trip. Consider the villas (completed 11/2010) for more luxury, definitely a balcony room for the best views. 2 parents, 2 ACTIVE boys, 6&8, balcony room 213/215. Restaurant is excellent, tambien!!

Room Tip: Pre-book shuttle service, excellent place for first/last nite stay
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  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank tamarap12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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675 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (129)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Frankfurt, Germany
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed July 10, 2011

A nice and clean hotel which is the best choice for your arrival in San Jose as it is very good located in the mountains over SJA and comes along with very friendly and good service orientated stuff. Rooms are clean but could need as the rest of the hotel and restaurant some new decoration. The tours you can do here organized by the hotel to the canopy zip lines and the vulcano Poas as worth doing it. The shuttle service to the international airport is complementary by the hotel. The breakfast is very good and allows also special wishes. The lunch and dinner menue looks a bit simple but the food is excelent. The hotel is very close by the DOKA coffee plant and you should not miss out a tour to this as well.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank cori2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed July 4, 2011

The location near the airport (but not near enough to hear the planes) is great for a last night/early flight place, or to get to easily for a rest stop after an overnight flight. I've stayed here first and last nights on two Costa Rica trips, many do just that.

They do airport transportation (but see below). The view of the Central Valley (they're near the top of a mountain) is superb. The grounds are lovely, as is typical in Costa Rica.

This place is nicely positioned between American style, and Costa Rican style. The bathrooms have shower doors and towel hooks. The rooms are well lit. Food is mostly familiar. Reasonable amenities, etc. Nothing too strange.

But with a Costa Rican flair. Most of the staff is Costa Rican. Here's my airport transportation story. The first time I stayed here I flew in I waited over a hour for the van. It was a bit nervous, first trip to Costa Rica, I didn't have a cell phone. Eventually, I met up with a couple who'd just arrived and was also looking for the Buena Vista van, which pulled up right after I met them.

It then dawned upon me, and made perfect sense. If you have one guy arriving in the early morning and then a couple arriving about an hour later, why would you send the van (it's maybe a 15-20 minute drive if it's not rush hour) twice? Burn the gas, etc.? What difference does it make if he arrives at the hotel at 9AM or 10AM? My introduction to "Costa Rican time".

Note that they'll get you TO the airport in time for your flight. They're smart about that.

Bottom line. This hotel is an excellent place, with great friendly service. If you stay at a more typical Costa Rican place, things will get stranger. See "shower door, towel hooks, lighting", above. But it IS Costa Rica. Expecting everything to be just as it is back home is a sure way to make a trip to an astounding country (Beauty like California, but better. Friendly, helpful people.) less pleasant.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Denverreviewer2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alvarado
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed June 26, 2011

If you need a place to stay close to the airport in San Jose try the Hotel Buena Vista. It is located above the city on a coffee plantation. They have a free shuttle that will pick you up or take you to the airport. The hotel is VERY clean and also quiet. The grounds are beautiful and have a nice view of the city and the surrounding mountains. The staff is very accomadating. You can have your rental car delivered or picked up at this hotel.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank seblair
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
1 review
Reviewed June 16, 2011

We had a lovely stay at the Buena Vista Hotel! The food was great, the room was comfortable, clean, roomy, and the grounds we very well kept. The staff were very friendly and helpful!!

Room Tip: Book on the website
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  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank johnsoncm8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brunswick, Maine
Level Contributor
25 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed May 26, 2011

My 2 college-aged sons and I spent 2 nights at the Buena Vista before flying home from Costa Rica. We chose it for its proximity to the airport (and free airport shuttle) and because the boys wanted to go ziplining before leaving CR and this activity was possible from the Buena Vista. It turned out to be a perfect choice. The guys had lots of fun doing the canopy tour at the nearby Collinas de Poas, and all three of us enjoyed a morning at the Poas Volcano. In between, we enjoyed relaxing at this very beautiful, well-maintained, and well run hotel.
Although the facilities and location are praiseworthy, the thing that really set the Buena Vista apart for me was the staff. Everyone went out of their way to make us feel comfortable and to help us in any way we needed. Christian arranged our excursion, David drove it ably and competently, everyone answered all our Spanish language questions, and Harlem, upon learning that I was interested in ornithology, shared his considerable knowledge and experience of the birds of the area. The trail through the small coffee plantation at the hotel offers a perfect place for bird-watching, and I spent several pleasant hours strolling there during my stay.
I recommend the Buena Vista enthusiastically!

Room Tip: Request a room with a balcony
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank EminMaine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed May 24, 2011

The view was lovely, the food was tasty, the room was comfortable, and the staff was really nice and helpful. It took a long time to get a ride from the airport would be my only complaint.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Melinda030
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Buena Vista

Property: Hotel Buena Vista
Address: Across from catholic church, Pilas, Alajuela, Alajuela 4050, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Alajuela
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Family Hotel in Alajuela
#7 Romantic Hotel in Alajuela
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Buena Vista 3*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The comment ofter heard in this hotel is, "We feel like we are at home." This is exactly the impression the management and staff of the Buena Vista strive to create. We are high on the summit of a mountain with a climate of eternal spring yet only fifteen minutes drive from the International Airport below. We will pick you up there and show you the wonders of this exotic country. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Buena Vista Hotel
Buena Vista Alajuela
Hotel Buena Vista Costa Rica/Alajuela

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