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San Jose Hotels

Hotel Aranjuez

  • C. 19, Avdas. 11–13 Map It
  • Local Flavor

Pros

  • Good budget value
  • Great place to meet other budget travelers
  • Excellent complimentary breakfast

Cons

  • Cumbersome reservations system
  • Far from sights

Updated 04/10/2014

Fodor's Review

Several 1940s-era houses with extensive gardens and lively common areas—visitors swap travel advice here—constitute this family-run lodging. Each room is different; some have private gardens or small sitting rooms. The complimentary breakfast buffet is an amazing spread of eggs, pastries, tropical fruit, and good Costa Rican coffee served on a marvelous, palm-shaded garden patio. And, this property is very eco-friendly, a rarity in the heart of the city. It has solar

panels for heating hot water, and it composts and recycles. Luxurious it is not, but this is deservedly one of San José's most popular budget lodgings; reserve well in advance during the high season. To be on the safe side, confirm your reservation 48 hours before you arrive and on the day of your arrival, giving an estimated arrival time. You'll get a small discount if you pay in cash.

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Hotel Information

Address:

C. 19, Avdas. 11–13, San José, 10101, Costa Rica

Map It

Phone:

/2256–1825; /2223–3528

Hotel Details:

  • 35 rooms, 29 with bath
  • Breakfast

Updated 04/10/2014

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Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating
  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Aug 8, 2009

Fodor's review is misleading

I think that the fodor's 2009 review is misleading on this hotel. They state that the hotel has a cumbersome reservation system and that you may find yourself out of a hotel. I made a reservation during July, which is rainy season. Nothing else was full anywhere that I stayed. I called to confirm but no one answered the phone so I left a message. I arrived, driving into a city with no street signs at night, a woman alone with 2 kids. They had not

"confirmed" my reservation even though he had my signed credit card slip right on the desk. I got the impression that it was with a whole bunch of signed credit card slips of "unconfirmed guests." The man was not the least bit nice about it (which I never experienced anywhere else in Costa Rica). He offered to send me to another hotel but in a very rude fashion. The new hotel was more expensive also in the middle of no where, was a dive and had a prominently displayed sign that said in English, that having sex with children was illegal. The words "kick back" echoed in my head. Without my fodor's, a cell phone and a GPS in the car, I would have been up a creek. I was able to find a cheaper, nicer and MUCH better located hotel without the suggestion it is used by the hour. I got the impression that the reason that this hotel is very cheap and looks nice on the website, is that they own other dives that they send the spill over too. It is also truly in the scariest part of any city that I have ever been to a hotel in and didn't look nice from what little I could see. Also rude management.

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By Joanna

  • Service

  • Food

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May 11, 2005

Fodor's Choice?? Give me a break!

We stayed at Hotel Aranjuez the last two nights of our 10 day vacation to Costa Rica. This was by far the best deal on lodging...and for a reason. I only booked it because it was a Fodor's choice. What a mistake! It's no wonder they want your cash up front, afraid that you'll check out early! It is in a seedy part of town...razor wire on the roof...singing bums walking by your room in the middle of the night. I seriously didn't think I would

be able to sleep for fear of someone breaking in! If you are willing to risk your life and stay here you must get the superior room, although there is nothing superior about it. At least that way you get your own bathroom. All night long you can hear people getting up and walking around the very noisy hallways to make it to the community baths. Breakfast was ok, but there are so many flies and no covers to the food. We had better breakfasts. I'd stay away if I were you!!

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By Eli

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

May 24, 2004

My friends loved it too.

The rooms were clean and quiet. The brunch was exceptional. Loved the quaint atmosphere. Reception was very helpful.

By Brent

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Feb 24, 2004

Get what you pay for?

disappointed in this choice. Nice size of room, but lacked the cleanliness that we desire. Lots of flies and other insects in many places in the room (couldn't leave any food exposed at all). But other amenities are great at this place, incl. free internet and a wonderful buffet breakfast. Service was good, location also good and safe.

By Karen

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Dec 22, 2003

Fodor's Choice???

On the negative side: neighborhood is not safe to walk at night. Walkable distance to downtown, but not convenient to come back to if you forget something. Go only with superior rooms, standard rooms are cramped and noisy. All use 45W lightbulbs, very dim. We experienced an unprofessional "no can do" attitude with most everything connected with reception. We reserved our first and last days in-country there, but they did not honor our last day's

reservation, telling us they had no room. We stored bags there when we traveled, but they don't guarantee it's safe, small wonder, they just gave me the key to retrieve my bags (or whatever else I wanted to ransack) afterward. When we inquired about travel options, they acted like they were too busy, the travel agent would be in later instead of providing us with her phone contact. She phoned us that night after we had made other arrangements, annoyed that they had not given us her phone contact. On the positive side, the price is right, there are a number of pleasant small lounges to sit, breakfast is great (the best plato típico we ate), and they were helpful getting us taxi's. But we wouldn't go back.

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