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.
- 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
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- Also Known As:
- Gran Hotel San Jose
- Gran Hotel Costa Rica San Jose