We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Awesome Experience!!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Castle Tam Hostel

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Castle Tam Hostel
Richmond, Virginia
1 review
“Awesome Experience!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2014

I had the pleasure of staying at Castle Tam for three months while teaching near the San Pedro area. My stay here was truly a remarkable experience and I appreciated the staff graciously ensuring an extremely comfortable environment. I especially enjoyed the fast internet, hot showers, approachable staff, and friendly guests. I also liked how the hostel was really close to many restaurants, shopping centers, and major bus lines. I'm grateful for the friendships I cultivated there and will always think of Castle Tam as my home away from home. Thanks Castle Tam!!!!

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled 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 Lurlene B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

105 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    36
    32
    10
    13
    14
See reviews for
1
19
37
8
Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (9)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 January 2014

Jonathan is very helpful. I've been in Central America for 2 months now and often ask Jonathan for advice on how to get from place to place.
The hostel is tucked away in a great location, very safe. Close to grocery stores, bars, and shopping. The staff speak english which is a plus because my spanish is less than horrible. Very friendly people here, always willing to help their guests out, and great conversations. If only the breakfast had bacon.... (the real stuff... man I miss bacon) I would most definately recommend this place to anyone passing through San Jose.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank stanthewoman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 January 2014

I've stayed at this hostel several times between 2011-2013. I have always enjoyed my stay, and I have made a lot of friends here. The hostel is situated in an ideal location, close to the University of Costa Rica, public transportation and many bars and stores. I was a five-minute-walk away from the university while I studied there, and later when I was working I could take the bus from two blocks away. The neighborhood is very safe, and there are many opportunities for entertainment. The staff members are very friendly, and always willing to help guests out, by giving directions, sharing their own experiences, giving tourist information and even booking tours for you. While I was there, the staff was very welcoming and would organize social outings, such as taking guests to the farmer's market, the movies, or out to a bar. I have met many travelers from all over the world, and Castle Tam has become my home away from home. I would definitely recommend it to anyone coming to San Jose.

One last thing: I've noticed that some of reviewers that complain about Castle Tam do not take into account that it is a hostel and not a hotel. If people want the Ritz then they should pay for it, otherwise stop complaining.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank chloevdhaar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Silver Spring, Maryland
Level Contributor
10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 January 2014

We stayed at this hostel for one night since we had an early flight out of San Jose the next morning. What a huge mistake.

We arrived at the hostel and it smelled everywhere like smoke and alcohol because the managers and employees have a room to the side where they drink and smoke. When we get to our room we noticed that the blankets and sheets smelled like they hadn't been washed, ever. The door didn't close properly and the bathroom door was impossible to close all the way as well.
The hostel doesn't allow smoking inside but everywhere smelled like smoke because of how close the inside and outside were. The fridge stunk because it didn't work properly. The entire 12 hours we felt so dirty and disgusting, the bathroom looked so terrifying we were afraid to shower. We also woke up every hour from the guy in the next room snoring. And to top it all off my bed had fresh bird poop on it when we woke up.

Do not stay here, not for $22 dollars, not for $1 not if they pay you.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Tali B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these San Pedro hotels

4.5 of 5 bubbles
Show Prices
4.5 of 5 bubbles
Show Prices
5 of 5 bubbles
Show Prices
Cagliari
Level Contributor
353 reviews
121 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 196 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 January 2014

Where do I start? The overall impression of this place is that it is pretty much abandoned and has a life of its own. The staff is "robotic" if not arrogant and unwelcoming, and none of the other guests I have met likes either the owner/manager, or the rest of the staff. As I arrived, I was given a series of rules (which, so that no mistake is ever made, are also written about in every single corner of the hostel). When stating the rules, the staff just kept repeating "we just tell everybody". The place is dirty. Ie the bathrooms could do with a decent scrub, and the whole place should be dusted and mopped. The dorm is decent in terms of beds, but it is dirty too. The kitchen is dirty, the common areas dusty/dirty too. The staff is snappy - I was snapped at as I was "late" for breakfast, which is from 8 to 10, and I only arrived at 9:50. I was told that I had been seen running about all morning, and had no excuse for that. Trouble is, I did have a good excuse. The dodgiest part, however, is the prices. I spent a night there in a double bedroom which costed me and my friend 8 dollars each (16 in total). The dorm costs 10 per person. When I went again, the double bedroom was already busy, so I stayed in the dorm and agreed that my friend and I would be moved to the double bedroom the day after, and we were told it would cost 16 dollars total. When we went down to check into the double bedroom, the price had suddenly become 26. We explained we had been told the price was 16, but the manager said he decides the prices - who knows how. We just left, and checked into a much nicer hostel.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank taffani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Missoula, Montana
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 December 2013 via mobile

The hostel was clean and well-run, and the layout is oriented very well to encourage hostel guests to hang out together. If you don't speak Spanish, this is a great place to be. the employees even answer the phone in english. The neighborhood is safe and proximity to downtown and bus stops is great. Two things on the negative side: the customer service was a little more than "chill" and came off as a bit off-putting. Not to say anyone there is lazy, but rather they should put more importance on making their guests feel welcome. Secondly a word from experience: you'll be a lot happier there if you smoke (we came out of the hostel smelling of cigarettes).

Stayed December 2013, travelled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank TrekConmigo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jonathan W, Owner at Castle Tam Hostel, responded to this review, 3 January 2014
I thank this person for their remarks and would like to address the negatives. First off, there are designated smoking areas and if someone does not want to be around the smokers, there are other places they can spend time. In accordance with Costa Rican Law smoking inside the public areas and the rooms is strongly enforced. Regarding the other complaint. We do not believe that staff are necessarily supposed to be "hanging out" with guests. Guests are permitted to sit with the staff in the area that we usually hang out in but we like to keep a separation that allows us to do our job better. During my first months as the owner of the hostel I became far too chummy with my guests which made doing my job a little more difficult. It is a lot easier to tell someone they need to clean up their dishes when you were not at the bar with them the night before. There are signs posted that inform guests where the staff are and anyone who needs anything is helped promptly. Once again, I thank this person for his candid remarks but wish he or she would have said something while still here so we would have had an opportunity to address his or her concerns immediately.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boblingen, Germany
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 December 2013

A decent hostel where you have great internet access and the basic services you need. I received great service as well as an excellent price for what I needed. It is near the Universidad de Costa Rica and next to a great bus route to get quickly to the National Archives as well as downtown San José. For those working at the Archives, I would recommend this hostel.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank bob b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near San Pedro
0.2 mi away
Hotel Casa Cambranes
Hotel Casa Cambranes
#10 of 85 in San Jose
5.0 of 5 bubbles 128 reviews
0.4 mi away
Boutique Hotel Jade
Boutique Hotel Jade
#1 of 3 in San Pedro
4.5 of 5 bubbles 122 reviews
1.5 mi away
Hotel Presidente
Hotel Presidente
#5 of 85 in San Jose
4.5 of 5 bubbles 1,355 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
2.5 mi away
Hostel Casa Colon
Hostel Casa Colon
#29 of 85 in San Jose
4.0 of 5 bubbles 276 reviews
3.3 mi away
Apartotel La Sabana
Apartotel La Sabana
#2 of 85 in San Jose
4.5 of 5 bubbles 824 reviews
0.0 mi away
In the Wind Hostel & Guesthouse
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Castle Tam Hostel? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Castle Tam Hostel

Property: Castle Tam Hostel
Address: 100 metros oeste Escuela de la Roosevelt | San Pedro, San Pedro 1000, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of San Jose > San Pedro
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 7 Speciality Lodging in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We're in the heart of lively, upscale San Pedro, only 300 meters from the University of Costa Rica and the student nightlife of Calle de la Amargura. Our hostel is 10 minutes by bus from downtown San Jose and walking distance from San Pedro Mall, three supermarkets and many restaurants! We have two full kitchens and plenty of fridge space for your food. Hang out with fellow travelers in the courtyard, or watch students pass by on the outside terrace. San Pedro is a safe neighborhood in San Jose, so we enjoy taking our guests out for movie nights, skating, city walks and pub crawls on Calle de la Amargura. We have regular BBQs, hot water in every bathroom and free WiFi throughout the building. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Castle Tam Hostel Costa Rica/San Pedro

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing