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“The most ridiculous dinner I've ever had!” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Grand Tara Hotel

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Grand Tara Hotel
Ranked #12 of 15 Hotels in Escazu
San Jose, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
21 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“The most ridiculous dinner I've ever had!”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 15, 2014 via mobile

I stayed with my boyfriend for one night and they offer us to dinner at the hotel. The waiter said they didnt't have menu just one option. The total price was $200 ! The worst was that the dinner didnt't worth it at all! They also had mosquitos all over the table! Any other place near the hotel would be better and not a ridiculous dinner of $200 for 2.
The bedroom was no had but looks old, needs definetely changes.

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
5 Thank YourEcofriend
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Front D, Director de Recepción at Grand Tara Hotel, responded to this review, February 20, 2014
Hello YourEcofriend
Thanks for your comments, this will help us to improve our customer service
Best Regards
Grand Tara-Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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39 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    11
    11
    6
    1
    10
See reviews for
2
24
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7
Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (10)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Level Contributor
17 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 5, 2014

The Grand Tara hotel is located in the area of Excauzu just outside Costa Rica's capital of San Jose. Situated on a hill, the hotel offers panoramic views of the entire city. Enjoy a wonderful meal while taking in one of the most amazing views you can imagine. Once a majestic plantation home, the estate is now home to one of Costa Rica's most exclusive hotels. Boasting a full service spa as well as restaurant and casino, this hotel has it all. This recently remodeled hotel is under new management and with renovations ongoing, gets better by the day. While a currently a solid 4 star hotel with service and amenities to match, the Grand Tara Hotel is a beautiful treasure. Come visit this majestic hotel and experience luxury firsthand.

Room Tip: Call ahead and speaking with the hotel receptionist and ask about specials and room selection
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Rye L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Meriden, Connecticut
Level Contributor
49 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 23, 2014

It must be said first and foremost: This hotel is nothing like what it is advertised to be. There is NO casino. There is NO spa. The restaurant is only open part of the day and the menu is limited. You must ask for ice. The wifi may or may not work depending on where you are. Our wooden floors were bowed. The lock on our door didn't work well and had to be jimmied every time we left. There were no close by restaurants. It was a fair drive up a mountain away from shopping or any main roads. Although we had booked a junior suite online, when we got there, we were placed in a very plain room away from the main house, as if the front desk people didn't pay attention to the reservation. This was solved with an inquiry to front desk, however, we should not have had to make this request had the front desk done their job in the first place. Now, there are some good things. For one, the room we did end up with was HUGE. Far more room than you would get in a typical junior suite. There were windows throughout and trust me when I say the views are spectacular. That 20 minute drive up the mountain does have a flip side. There was a flat screen with cable...if you're planning on watching tv. The bathroom had warm water, which for anyone whose been in Costa Rica before knows is not entirely commonplace. The people working there were very friendly and were always ready to help. I will be honest here and say that I would not stay here again, although this particular trip was certainly not negatively impacted by the lack of amenities; you just simply cannot stay at this hotel expecting it to be something it's not.

Room Tip: Get at least a junior suite and make sure you get the room you reserved.
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Patricia K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Front D, Director de Recepción at Grand Tara Hotel, responded to this review, February 20, 2014
Hello Patricia K
Thanks for your comments, this will help us to improve our customer service, I would like let you know, we open our Restaurant & Spa already for everybody, from 7:00 until 23:00

Sincerely
Your Grand Tara-Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 9, 2014

The good:
Beautiful place, inside and out.
Warm, friendly, helpful, fluent in English staff.
Good wi-fi.
Good coffee.
Provide taxi rides to town for tour pickup.
Quiet.
Clean.

The meh:
It's far away from anything meaning taxis...or rent a car.
The tours won't pick you up from the hotel.
Restaurant didn't open for us to sample.

Details:
Soon after finding a great package deal on Orbitz I discovered the rafting tour I wanted to book would not pick us up at Grand Tara (because it's way up a hill - about 3 miles out of town), but they would pick us up at the Beacon Escazu (who also own Tara).

NOTE: Orbitz will not honor the information given about the tours. I strongly advise checking with any tour vendor whether they pick up at a particular place ahead of time. I specifically asked Orbitz if we could be picked up at Tara before booking (they assured me we could be picked up) and then wouldn't do anything about it after I found out this wasn't the case.

The reservation manager, Dayanna, was very easy to reach and communicate with via email before leaving the US and agreed to provide a taxi for us to Beacon for our tour(s).

Upon arrival in San Jose Tuesday night we picked up a taxi (bad idea...Taxi rides to Escazu from SJO airport are about $33...should have rented a car) to Grand Tara. It's cold there at night as it's on a hill- bring a sweater!

The hotel was as pictured- beautiful, stately ... indeed, the rooms are named after US Presidents. The floors are a highly polished dark wood, and the rooms are high ceilinged, simple and elegant. The front desk clerk on duty was named Katya- a very high energy, smiling, chatty woman. Outside the hotel the grounds were neatly manicured.

Apparently, the hotel is under new ownership as of the end of 2013, and operations were still ramping up. I'd guess the hotel has 9-15 rooms total, and it felt mostly unoccupied. The restaurant wasn't opened on the day we arrived (but it was when we left) so I can't comment on the food. They do use cafe Britt- which I found to be one of the better coffees in Costa Rica.

Both Katya and Dayanna treated us like family, which was appreciated. Dayanna even made a stop at a bakery for me to grab a surprise birthday cake for my girlfriend- and Katya delivered it with lit candles after we arrived that night, singing a Costa Rican version of happy birthday. I couldn't thank them enough for that small gesture.

Would I stay there again? Yes.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank EJM91206
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego
Level Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 18, 2013

It was probably a beautiful property eight years ago. We upgraded to the penthouse which had beautiful views, but that's it. The beautiful wood floors hadn't been mopped in months. The toilet area is open to the entire guest room so it is very uncomfortable to say the least. We were woken up every night by echos of other guests leaving to catch early morning flights, clanging loudly up and down the wooden stairs (no elevator) with their bags at all hours of the night. Many weddings take place at Tara and can be heard throughout the hotel. The gate is rarely open so sometimes you must break into the gatekeepers stand and open the gate yourself. THE HOTEL IS GROSSLY UNDERSTAFFED and the hotel is suffering due to this. NO AMENITIES WERE OPEN DURING HIGH SEASON. They did not have a restaurant open for dinner. Good luck getting a drink at the bar. Everything was shut down and not stocked. We stayed over a four day weekend and only saw two staff members. The internet rarely works and when our toilet overflowed they told us, no problem, the plumber can come the next morning to fix it....

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank marcie87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Front D, Director de Recepción at Grand Tara Hotel, responded to this review, February 18, 2014
Hello dear marcie87
Thank you for your review,
I really apologize about your inconvenients in our Hotel, I just would like let you know that we open our restaurant already, from 7:00 until 23:00 for everybody, we also offer room service without extra charge,
Best regards
Your Grand Tara-Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Escazu hotels

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
84 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

Let's see.... The spa, restaurant, casino, and bar were closed. The hotel is on a mountain away from everything. We seriously had to take a $20 cab ride to get food. I mean NOTHING but a room. That's not even the worst part. The hotel was taken over by a wedding band that had 8 bass drummers pounding, while 8 women in "carnivale" costumes, screamed at the top of their lungs. With the guests blowing on whistles all at the same time. I am NOT joking. At 3 am several guests including us ran from the hotel to another one down the mountain another $20 cab ride to get at least 2 hours of sleep. It was awful. Oh and the view is of local slums. I posted a video of the noise. It's unbelievable

Room Tip: Don't stay here lol
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank shanchicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Front D, Director de Recepción at Grand Tara Hotel, responded to this review, February 20, 2014
Thanks for your review, this will help us to improve our customer service.

I really apologize about your inconvenient in our Hotel, Let me tell you that we open our restaurant already, from 7:00 until 23:00 for everybody, we also offer room service without extra charge,

Sincerely
Your Grand Tara-Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Tara Hotel

Property: Grand Tara Hotel
Address: Mts West 800 Mts South From San Antonio de Escazu Church 300, Escazu 10201, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of San Jose > San Jose Metro > Escazu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 15 Hotels in Escazu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Tara Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The three-story, 23-room hotel is adorned with ornate white pillars, a spacious balcony and floor-to-ceiling windows. Inside, hardwood floors, natural wood accents and a winding staircase give the hotel an elegant appeal. The Grand Tara offers plenty of places to unwind from a day of business negotiations or sightseeing. Guests can lounge by the pool or Jacuzzi, enjoy a cocktail on the veranda or take in the view on the terrace. The on-site spa offers a variety of treatments, including massages, facials, manicures and pedicures. Cosmetic surgery can also be scheduled after a personal consultation with the on-site doctor. The aptly named Grand View Restaurant, headed by an executive chef, whips up inventive international fare and is open to the public for breakfast, lunch and dinner, although reservations are recommended. The spacious, stylishly appointed guest rooms feature king or queen-size beds and old-fashioned charm, but with modern amenities such as mini fridges, flat-screen televisions and wireless Internet. Rooms differ in size, but all have views of either the Central Valley or the mountains. A few rooms contain immense walk-in closets. For families or groups, the hotel has nine suites that each contain a large living area, fully equipped kitchen and a varying number of bedrooms. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Grand Tara Hotel Costa Rica/Escazu

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