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“Close to downtown but far enough away” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Palma Real Hotel & Casino

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Palma Real Hotel & Casino
Ranked #30 of 84 Hotels in San Jose
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
53 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Close to downtown but far enough away”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 2, 2014

Just a short and inexpensive taxi from downtown and offering free airport shuttle, Palma Real is a good choice. Staff is very helpful and breakfast is quite nice, either make to order or buffet. Most in our group enjoyed it.

Room Tip: Get a room not facing the street where casino entrance is located.
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank CostaRicaGuest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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314 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (36)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Korean first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Peterborough
Level Contributor
53 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 141 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 30, 2014

We just got back from Costa Rica a few days ago! We stayed at the Hotel Palma Real in San Jose for 9 days. My husband had the opportunity to compete in the North, Central and Caribbean World Masters Track & Field Championships so we decided to combine athletics with more touristy stuff! Our stay at the Palma Real was excellent! It is located a 10 minute walk from the stadium and about 45 minutes from the downtown pedestrian mall (or a $3 cab ride!). The hotel itself is located on a quiet side street about a block from the busy Paseo Colon which is great!

Hotel and Rooms: This is a rather small hotel (which we prefer) which was great! It has a lovely open reception area, a small bar and a restaurant on the main floor. There is also a perfectly good gym on the 4th floor with a walk out deck - great views of San Jose and the surrounding mountains! It also has a Casino located at the back of the hotel! We are not gamblers at all but had some great lunches and libations there - the prices are a good half of what they are in the bar and restaurant! Plus the casino workers were great - helped me practice my Spanish! Our room was perfect - it looked out over an inner courtyard and was very quiet - I recommend the inner rooms! We had two double beds, lots of room to move and a good bathroom. Of course there is a fridge stocked with very expensive drinks and snacks should you so choose. We walked to a nearby grocery store and stocked up! As for cleanliness - muchas gracias to Marta, our housekeeper! She was kind and sweet, and kept our room squeaky clean!

Staff: In a word, AWESOME!!! Answered every question, were knowledgeable, helpful, and went out of their way ALWAYS to make sure we had everything we needed! I cannot say enough about them! Javier - the very best concierge! Juan and Sebastion - could not ask for more on reception! And everyone else (from bartenders, to the other reception people, to servers in the restaurant) - we did not encounter one person who did not go over and above for us! And if you want to do the excursions, make sure you get help from Javier - we did and had fantastic experiences! We went on the Waterfall Garden tour with Olman Arce Mejia of Assist Tours (Javier recommended him) and it was excellent! We also went on the Irazu volcano tour - again - great!

If you contact the hotel 48 hrs or more before you arrive with your flight information they will have a van pick you up at the airport (otherwise it is approx. $26 by cab) - and you can also book the shuttle to get you back to the airport - again, it must be done at least 48 hrs. in advance. We booked when we arrived. Just talk to reception.

All in all, a wonderful time! Would we stay at this hotel again? Absolutely!

We booked our flight and hotel through Expedia and got what I think was a great deal!

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the 2nd or 3rd floor facing the inner courtyard!
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Geographer2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Playa Jaco, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
19 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 27, 2014

I stayed there to attend an event at the National Stadium and this was a great location for it, an easy walk over and back. All the staff were helpful and friendly as well. Rooms are small but clean and beds are comfy.

Room Tip: Ask for an inside room so you can't hear road noise.
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ticasueW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
86 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 26, 2014

This is a centrally located hotel. The restaurant is very good. The casino not so much, but I wasn't there to waste money so that wasn't an issue for me. The staff are more than helpful and very friendly. After visiting other Central American countries in m trip I was amazed by how friendly and professional the staff was. If you are looking for a quiet place to stay in or a family vacation this is the place to be. I would most likely stay here in again. The only thing that was missing was a pool, but with so many things to do in CR who wants to be in the pool?

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DennisR35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shirley G, Manager at Palma Real Hotel & Casino, responded to this review, July 31, 2014
Dear Mr Dennis

We are really happy for your note. I will forward your comment to all our staff. Our mind gold to create a different experiences for all our guests.

Hope to serve you in the near future. Please contact me any time for your next trip to San Jose an your home Palma Real Hotel & Casino.

Best regards.

Carlos Ruiz
Director
Palma Real Hotel & Casino
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 17, 2014 via mobile

My family and I had a nice time the couple days we had to stay and its in san jose near alot of places. They have complementary breakfast with the stay, it was really good, not your cereal and dounut kind of breakfast..They book tours and rent a car at the same facility which was easy for us to do...The staff and service was great. Javier Serrano and Juan Gomez were so helpful they made us feel at home. My family would stay there again.

Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank JessEsteva75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shirley G, Manager at Palma Real Hotel & Casino, responded to this review, June 20, 2014
Dear Mr Estevez

Thanks for your note. I will forward your comment to all our staff. Our mind gold to create a different experiences for all our guests

Hope to serve you in the near future. Please contact me any time for your next trip to San Jose an your home.

Best regards

Carlos Ruiz
Director
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Juan Capistrano, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 25, 2014

The most common question that is left in the back of ones mind is did I get value for my stay? This is the most important concern for the traveling business person such as my self. In this new normal value is the watch word to measure the success of any trip. As to value I can honestly state that my recent stay at Hotel Palma Real answered this question with a resounding yes. It is not often that you receive wonderful amenities for a great value. The Hotel prides itself on serving the demands and needs of the business traveler. Recently. it was part of the celebrated, respected and renowned global hotel chain Barcello, although, now independent it retains the "upscale" features but has added some nice touches of their own. For example, Palma Real offers a casino and bar opportunity to relieve the new “worries” or to celebrate the new “suceesses” to its business patrons. But it is also is centrally located to downtown San Jose or adjoining areas thereby affording savings with taxis. Next , Palma Real realizes that business has to get done this is why there is a fully operational business center, to fax, scan, or simply have an integrated meeting and work area that is up to the daily business demands. Finally, as an added bonus to clean, and comfortable rooms Palma Real offers a compact but modern fitness and beauty salon on the 3rd and 4th floor. The fitness center in particular commands a scenic view being situated on the 4th floor giving your workout a “top of the world” experience. In sum Palma Real captures needs of the business traveler to Costa Rica. But it also offers to visitors seeking to enjoy the natural beauty of Costa Rica a convenient , and reasonable boutique hotel to my fellow travelers which although geared to business is a wonderful staging and launch point to enjoy Costa Rica.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled on business
    • 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?
2 Thank luis r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shirley G, Manager at Palma Real Hotel & Casino, responded to this review, May 2, 2014
Dear Mr Luis

We are really happy for your note. I will forward your comment to all our staff. Our mind gold to create a different experiences for all our guests

Hope to serve you in the near future. Please contact me any time for your next trip to San Jose an your home Palma Real Hotel & Casino

Best regards

Carlos Ruiz
Director
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
34 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 13, 2014 via mobile

You don't stay in San Jose for a luxurious resort, so I didn't come expecting much. This hotel offers ok value for money when it comes to room and breakfast, I haven't stayed at other hotels in the area so I can't promote or pan it.. I liked the location, the rooms were of decent size, wifi is fast, but towels felt dirty. Breakfast buffet was ok, but what ever you do, don't eat there for dinner, service was forgetful (as was our food apparently) and the salad looked toxic, the soup undercooked if possible, and the guacamole took 100 hours for "meh" flavor, drinks were watered down.
In brief: I would sleep here again, but would avoid eating here.

Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank LondonCake
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shirley G, Manager at Palma Real Hotel & Casino, responded to this review, April 23, 2014
Dear Mr / MS

Thanks for the comments in Trip Advisor, is very important for the Palma Real Hotel and our staff.

I will look personally the comments with our Chef and our House Keeping to fix the details that you mention.

We will be honor to serve you again in the near future so please contact me and I will arranges all the details during your stay with us and give us the chance to serve you better.

Best regards and thanks again

Sincerely

Carlos Ruiz Ruiz
Director
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 Palma Real Hotel & Casino

Property: Palma Real Hotel & Casino
Address: AV 9 Calle 50 | Sabana Norte, San Jose 250, 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 Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#6 Casino Hotel in San Jose
#22 Business Hotel in San Jose
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Palma Real Hotel & Casino 3.5*
Number of rooms: 68
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel is just a 5 minute walk from San Jose center, the capital of Costa Rica, and only 15 minutes by car from Juan Santamaria International Airport. Furthermore, it provides easy access to the main business, shopping and leisure areas in the capital. In 2010 the hotel was renovated and presently boasts very modern facilities and many services, especially for guests visiting San Jose on business. The hotel has a fully-equipped business center with internet access, photocopiers, fax, messenger service and plane ticket confirmation service. In addition, it has comfortable and spacious rooms that will make your stay relaxing and pleasurable. The Palma Real hotel has obtained the Sustainability Certificate, which helps to preserve one of the most virgin destinations in the world. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Barcelo Palma Real Hotel San Jose
Barcelo San Jose
Palma Real Hotel & Casino Costa Rica/San Jose

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