We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
WINNER WONDERLAND
Win Big When You Book on TripAdvisor

“A fading beauty” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of Gran Hotel Costa Rica

Best prices for -
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Gran Hotel Costa Rica
Ranked #38 of 84 Hotels in San Jose
Hayward, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
113 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“A fading beauty”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 27, 2013

We booked this hotel with "rewards" points. It sounded glorious, and it probably was in its day. We arrived around midnight -San Jose is almost completely empty after dark due to high crime - so it was eerie from the get go. The desk clerk seemed completely indifferent to our arrival - kind of a "bummer" when you're beginning a vacation. We needed different sleeping arrangements which the evening male staff was quick to handle - The wake up call I requested didn't happen - significant as I needed to catch an early morning flight. The excuse given was the room change; however, the desk clerk was aware of the room change the night before. The rooms reminded me of an historical version of The Shinning - long, dark, empty hallways, with handsome, though worn, furniture. Now the upside: wonderful, varied buffet breakfast on the balcony overlooking the courtyard. The reception area and first floor restaurant were quite nice with beautiful antique brass lamps, period decor. There is a sectional sofa blocked off with a picture of President Kennedy who appears to have stayed there. This hotel is right in the middle of town - shops and museums. There is upgrading going on (e.g., A/C units in rooms). I hope the restoration continues as hotels like the Grand are rare and too beautiful to allow to become dilapidated.

Room Tip: An historical gem, but there's much needed updating.
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank LeeB13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, General Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, August 29, 2013
Thank you for your much appreciated comments. We are constantly upgrading our property and will take your comments seriously to keep them in mind. We hope to have you back soon to experience our newly upgraded rooms with A/C
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

893 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    118
    294
    273
    131
    77
See reviews for
148
348
84
64
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 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 (140)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Mexico City, Mexico
Level Contributor
142 reviews
50 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 25, 2013

If you go to Costa Rica, don't waste your time and money in San Jose. Go to many of. the breathtaking national parks and countless beaches Costa Rica has to offer, and if you must stay in San Jose, stay in the Escazu area., it's very nice and affordable. San Jose's downtown area is dirty and lacks colonial and modern architecture, as well as good restaurants This hotel had is charm in the 1940s, I'm sure, but now is just another hotel over rated hotel in need of renovation It's not a four star hotel. I should know, I spend half of my life in hotels due to my line of work. and on the weekends, you won't rest well. there is a lot of noise on the street and the rooms lack window noise isolation. The staff is friendly, the place is clean, and the breakfast, which is included is good, not great, but good enough.

Room Tip: choose a standard room for the $78 fee, and don't waste your money on the $138 deluxe or the mor...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank celta r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, General Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, August 29, 2013
Thank you for your most appreciated comments. Our hotel is undergoing a major renovation and upgrade starting next year and we hope to have you back one day to get to know our property from a different angle and show you some nice things to do in San Jose Center.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these San Jose hotels

New York City
Level Contributor
74 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 25, 2013

Beautiful upkeep, classy hotel, good breakfast buffet, clean rooms, great water pressure, pretty outdoor restaurant, live music. Didn't go to the spa but it looks nice. Free wifi. Right in the middle of downtown San Jose. ATM located on the premises.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank FinickyNewYorker
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, February 28, 2013
Thank you very much! We hope to have you back with us soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chapala, Mexico
Level Contributor
36 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 25, 2013

We stayed in this hotel for 3 nights, 2 in December and 1 in January 2013. It probably is not up to western 4**** standards, but we liked it a lot anyway. You can not beat the location, right in the center, walking distance everywhere. Plus it has excellet views from the restaurant. The breakfast was OK, and so was the WiFi. And it was nice to be part of the history, JFK stayed there among other famous people. We booked it through Choice Hotels web-site, so the price was OK for what we were getting. I do recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank samykovac
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, March 6, 2013
Thank you very much! We certainly appreciate your kindness review. We hope can have you back anytime soon,

Regards
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Somerset, New Jersey
Level Contributor
158 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 25, 2013

I was traveling with a group and we stayed here upon arrival in Costa Rica. It's right in the heart of the city, lots of "characters" hanging around, and we didn't feel real safe letting our 13 and 14 year old kids walk around the hotel, let alone the surrounding area at night. My room was old, dark and dingy, but the shower was hot. I was kept awake by pigeons cooing outside my window most of the night night. I think the staff tries their best though; for example, the towels were folded into decorative swans on the bed. We had a buffet dinner and breakfast at the hotel (in our own dining room), and the quality and quantity was very good. The servers were very friendly as well. It was "traditional" Costa Rica food, and gave our group a nice intro to the country. At night, the adults I was with went outside and sat on the main porch and had a few (non alcoholic) drinks. This was very nice and relaxing.
I wouldn't stay here again - although the people were friendly, the interior of the hotel needs a huge makeover!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank cpgz
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, March 6, 2013
We appreciate every comment. Thank you for taking the time on writing a review. Every word is being saved and we are working on making a our Hotel in the best choice in downtown San Jose.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Medford, OR
Level Contributor
42 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 15, 2013

I definitely have mixed reviews about this hotel. It was very charming and really cool to see all of the antiques and original character. There were lots of different rooms and areas for seating and eating but it all seems a little uncared for. Like they didn't have enough staff to keep it all clean. The rooms were very small, the carpets were a bit dirty and the bathrooms were a bit gross and smelled bad. The toilet was a commercial toilet and had hard-water stains on the porcelain. The bathtub was also stained. Lighting in the bathroom was poor - probably for the best.

The rest of the hotel was beautiful though and although I'd probably not stay again as it is, I would if it were remodeled a bit.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank moonovrmiami
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, General Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, August 29, 2013
Thank you for your comments we hope you visit us again one day.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Matino, Italy
Level Contributor
37 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 14, 2013

Bad experience for a 4**** hotel
Slept 4 nights, room with no view, noisy on the second floor.
Wifi low always problem of connection.
Fitness with a running machine but out of order
Breakfast poor with low quality of product
For the final touch, we came back two nights later to spend our last night and by changing one of our reservations, the lady at the reception misunderstand us and canceled it... with a big smile, she was sorry but not giving us a solution. finally she send us in an other hotel of the group, with rooms without windows...
I recommend you to never go to Grand Hotel Costa Rica

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank SevD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, General Manager at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, August 29, 2013
Thank you for your most appreciated comments. We are actually undergoing an upgrade of our property and hope to have you back one day to experience our historic hotel from a different point of view.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these San Jose hotels
0.2 mi away
Balmoral Hotel
Balmoral Hotel
#12 of 84 in San Jose
4.0 of 5 bubbles 1,041 reviews
0.2 mi away
Hotel Presidente
Hotel Presidente
#7 of 84 in San Jose
4.0 of 5 bubbles 1,234 reviews
0.0 mi away
Hotel El Maragato
Hotel El Maragato
#44 of 84 in San Jose
3.5 of 5 bubbles 99 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.2 mi away
Hotel Santo Tomas
Hotel Santo Tomas
#6 of 84 in San Jose
4.5 of 5 bubbles 853 reviews
0.4 mi away
Hotel Fleur de Lys
Hotel Fleur de Lys
#21 of 84 in San Jose
4.0 of 5 bubbles 439 reviews
0.3 mi away
Hotel Dunn Inn
Hotel Dunn Inn
#14 of 84 in San Jose
4.5 of 5 bubbles 375 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Gran Hotel Costa Rica? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Gran Hotel Costa Rica

Property: 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 Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in San Jose
#7 Casino Hotel in San Jose
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Gran Hotel Costa Rica 4*
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 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Cancelon and Travelocity so you can book your Gran Hotel Costa Rica reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Gran Hotel San Jose
Gran Hotel Costa Rica San Jose

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing