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Hotels in San Jose, Costa Rica

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Best hotels in San Jose

San Jose Hotels

Costa Rica's capital is as colorful and lively as you'd expect, with a strong emphasis on culture and history. From the Colonial neighborhoods with their historic churches and homes, to the mega malls which have sprung up as the country becomes more prosperous, there's a big contrast between the old and new parts of the city. You'll find all the entertainment facilities you'd expect from a city of this size, with world class restaurants, endless shopping opportunities, and a lively cultural activities, yet you are always close to the rainforests and unspoiled natural beauty.

Things to see

The ultra modern and stylish Multiplaza Escazú is one of Costa Rica's biggest malls, with 3 floors of local and international stores. This sprawling mall has a huge food court with fast food favorites, a multiscreen cinema, and huge flagship stores that make it a great family day out. A trip to the Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica is essential for lovers of live theater, and this impressive Neoclassical building has a lavish interior, with the centerpiece being a domed ceiling covered in paintings of angels and clouds that makes you feel you're looking up to heaven. The grand stage is host to some of the country's finest performers, and you'll find a calendar full of classical music, dance, and plays. If you need an escape from the busy city, then La Sabana Metropolitan Park provides a peaceful retreat. As one of the country's largest urban parks, you can enjoy a stroll around the serene lake, take a spin on the roller skating track, or take part in one of the arts activities that are put on throughout the year. The park is also surrounded by some of the city's most iconic buildings, from the national stadium to government buildings.

Hotels in San Jose

If you've decided to stay in the city, then there's a wide selection of accommodation available to suit your style and budget. If you're looking for luxury hotels in San José, you'll find 4 to 5 star properties in the city center, often part of international chains. These hotels often have extras such as free WiFi and parking as part of your room rate, and you'll enjoy facilities such as outdoor pools, fitness centers, and rooftop terraces. If you want a budget option, the city has many hostels and lower priced hotels that offer clean and comfortable rooms. Here you can enjoy a central base to stay, with breakfast available, and services such as laundry for those who have been traveling.

Where to stay

Escazú is well known across Costa Rica for being home to the country's elite, and this exclusive neighborhood is full of expensive homes, boutique stores, modern shopping malls, and world class restaurants. It's also a hotspot for clubbing, and at night the stylish clubs are filled with the well-heeled locals who are ready to party. Barrio Amón is an older neighborhood, much of which was built during the late 19th century, so you'll see charming examples of Colonial architecture such as red-brick Victorian homes that have been painted in bright colors. The impressive mansions once belonged to the cafétalero, coffee barons who brought prosperity to the country, and the neighborhood retains an upmarket feel, with cool cafés, international restaurants, and boutique clothing stores.

How to get to San Jose

Juan Santamaria International Airport is just a 25 minute drive from the city, and you'll find flights arriving from across the USA, Canada, Europe, and South America. There are plenty of licensed cabs at the airport, or private shuttles that can be booked in advance. There's also a public bus that runs from outside the terminal to downtown, and this can be cheap, although it's not recommended for those with lots of luggage. Estación del Pacífico provides train services to surrounding cities, as well as commuter services, although the train often travels through busy areas which means it's not the fastest mode of transport.

San Jose travel guides

San Jose Travel Guides

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