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“Mixed Feelings” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Gran Hotel Costa Rica

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Gran Hotel Costa Rica
Ranked #39 of 85 Hotels in San Jose
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
116 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Mixed Feelings”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 6, 2014

The hotel is beautiful, at least the shell of it. very impressive building with original 1930's features, but the interior leaves a bitter sweet taste.
First, the lighting does not feature the fittings and makes the lobby and foyer look boring and tired, very dark too.
In the room, beds are comfy with nice bedding but the AC unit is a standalone unit and makes an awful noise that doesn't let me you sleep. Sadly, you cannot move it as it's vent is attached to the window so it blocks the access to the window.
Had a beautiful view of the Plaza de la Cultura and the National Theatre which was a plus.
The bathroom.. as charming as it was (original period features) doesn't have a window and the only two lights in there came from the mirror, so light was poor and very dark in there.
Breakfast is delicious and there are plenty of options to choose from, plus a good view of the city.

Overall, I enjoyed my time here, but I do think the hotel needs to be redesigned or at least refurbished as it looks very tired and dull.

the only problem I could think of is that my room door didn't have an electronic lock and it is really hard to lock the door, to the point that the cleaning lady couldn't do it (or didn't bother) and when we arrived in the evening the door was wide open. all valuables in the safe so nothing to worry, but still... it was a bit of a shock. Ah, the when closing the curtains at night the whole rail came off (detached from the wall and we had to improvise a way to close them and report it the next morning)

Staff delivers an amazing service. very nice people.

Room Tip: rooms don't have double glazing and if you have a theatre view it will get noisy from 5am (peopl...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Josh M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, Director General at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, June 2, 2014
Thank you for your much appreciated comments. We have taken notes of each and every comment of your and we have included your observations in our upcoming hotel refurbishment master plan. We hope to welcome you back soon at our historic property.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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895 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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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
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English first
Downey, California
Level Contributor
27 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 5, 2014

first time in costa rica read the reviews about this hotel and was a little scare about some of the negative comments here. we love old properties this hotel is classic old hotel love it. stay for 9 days here arrive on the 14 of april at 11 pm front receptionist big smile , my room had amazing view love it. in the night you do hear the chirp from the street light it did not bother me at all. breakfast was very good i really enjoy it. the staff was always smiling love the service. this hotel is in a super great location. let me only say what is wrong the maid left my room unlock one time the rug seems like it needs a good vacuum the water shower has problems water flow is small i always had hot water. hotel smells old but is a classic hotel no problem for me .the bed was not soft it was a hard mattress , if this hotels invest a little more on simple things it will be even better . i am going to come back here cause i love this hotel i have other choices but this hotel i would come back again give it a try if you dont like old classic hotel and dont mind little faulty things then this is the place for you.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank everardo a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, Director General at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, June 2, 2014
Thank you for your much appreciated comments. We will consider all you comments and suggestions in the upcoming hotel renovation. We hope to have you back soon at our property.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Merritt Island, Florida
Level Contributor
122 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 1, 2014

A classic European themed hotel located next to the National Theater, museum (underground) and major shopping and dining areas. The hotel is clean and a very convenient site for tourists who want a great location down town at a fair price. The outdoor French style cafe, overlooking the National Theater is a great place to enjoy a good lunch.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • 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
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Don L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, Director General at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, June 2, 2014
Thank you for your much appreciated comments. We hope to welcome you back soon at your home away from home the Gran Hotel Costa Rica.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philipsburg, St. Maarten-St. Martin
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 26, 2014

It was my first time in Gran Hotel Costa Rica but is was simply fantastic. I sent an email to the hotel the day before my arrival requesting a room with plaza view and A/C. The hotel responded super efficiently informing me that although I had booked an ordinary room, they were pleased to give me an upgrade (probably hotel will not always be able to meet guests' requests). I had a great room with wonderfull view of the Plaza and A/C. Some comments complain about the A/C but it functions as it should. I stayed in Costa Rica for two weeks and stayed in many different hotels. This one was absolutely the best. Great service, great staff, excellent breakfast, beds were fantastic, outside gallery is amazing and you simply stay in a hotel with a soul. Don't miss Gran Hotel Costa Rica!

Room Tip: Sending an email to the hotel with your requests, will enable the hotel in advance to anticipate you...
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Reinoud_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandor T, Director General at Gran Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, June 2, 2014
Google Translation
Muchas gracias por sus valiosos comentarios. Esperamos poderles dar de nuevo la mas cordial bienvenida en el Gran Hotel Costa Rica.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
108 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 17, 2014

We stayed here as part of a group for 2 nights at the beginning of our holiday and one at the end. It is a bit of a "tired old lady" but beautifully situated in the heart of the town. The obviously newly installed free standing a.c. units (holes cut in window glass and hose poked through) were a novel experience. The terrace on the ground floor is lovely and so is sitting on the balcony for breakfast if you are lucky enough to get a table. To be right in the centre of things is a great experience. However, the meals we had in that upstairs restaurant were poor and lukewarm - had we not been in a group and eaten elsewhere in the hotel it could have been different. Most comfortable beds we found in Costa Rica.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank JandG1357
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, April 25, 2014
Thank you for your much appreciated comments. We have transmitted your comments about the food to our chef and he has made already the necessary corrections so these failures dont occur again. We hope to have you back soon here at your home away from home the Gran Hotel Costa Rica.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
67 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 13, 2014

There is no better way to start discovering a city than by staying right in the heart of it and that is exactly where the Gran Hotel is! The bustling squares are alive from early morning to late evening (though I was never disturbed during the night). You can sit on the terrace enjoying a drink and watch the world of San Jose go by! Inside the hotel, my room was fine and, although the portable aircon equipment was rather noisy, it did the trick. However, my shower was always a bit of a surprise, as it regularly went from scalding to cold with no warning. Sadly, the biggest disappointment was the food, which, without exception, was uninspiring and overcooked.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank ap2601
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, April 25, 2014
Thank you for your nice comments. We have transmitted you comments about the food to our chef and he will include these comments in our Standard Operating Procedures to improve quality on the food side of our services. We hope to welcome you back soon at your home away from home the Gran Hotel Costa Rica.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watchung, New Jersey
Level Contributor
21 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 11, 2014

I have been using the Gran Hotel Costa Rica for about 10 years now for regular business trips to the country. It's central location make it easy to access public transportation and the amenities of San Jose. The staff at the Hotel are always very professional and friendly. I enjoy seeing the smiling face of our Bellman, Yaru Cruz, each year I return to the hotel. I recommend this hotel without hesitation.

Room Tip: ask for a room on the plaza side, not the pedestrian street as it is too noisy.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank DonMincho
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, April 25, 2014
Thank you for your much apreciated and positive comments. We have transmitted your positive comments to Yaru one of our many excellent asociates. We hope to welcome you back soon at your home away from home the Gran Hotel Costa Rica.
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 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 
Also Known As:
Gran Hotel San Jose
Gran Hotel Costa Rica San Jose

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