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.

“Hotel Santo Tomas great experience and value”
Review of Hotel Santo Tomas

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
and 11 more sites!
Hotel Santo Tomas
Ranked #7 of 84 Hotels in San Jose
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Hotel Santo Tomas great experience and value”
Reviewed 30 June 2011

Our overall experience staying at Santo Tomas was excellent. Helpful, friendly staff, beautiful building, very clean. Our room was spacious with high ceilings and comfortable. They are well located, although at night you'd want to take a taxi, which are very cheap. The guests staying at the hotel were from all over the world.
Hotel Santo Tomas is definantly not the Holiday Inn. I would recommend it if you want a Costa Rican experience.

  • Stayed June 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ellrey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

930 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    482
    326
    90
    21
    11
See reviews for
156
391
170
33
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (257)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Stow, Ohio
Level Contributor
48 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 June 2011

We had an enjoyable stay at hotel Santo Tomas. Upon arriving at Santo Tomas I was a little wary because of the locked gate and the street views, however, after stepping foot in this hotel, any concerns about safety I had, disappeared. The staff members were very helpful and friendly, helping to arrange cab rides to the airport and they were always available to answer any questions. The hotel is centrally located in San Jose and walking distance from the shopping district as well as a short cab ride away from many wonderful restaurants in the area. The rooms were very clean and spacious with the elegance of old world décor. The outside seating area where breakfast is served is beautiful. Breakfast was great and served promptly, which is always a plus. Santo Tomas pays attention to every detail from beautiful title floors, down to the landscaping by the pool. I would stay at hotel Santo Tomas again and I would recommend this hotel to anyone planning to visit San Jose Costa Rica.

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 23O_H_I_O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 June 2011

My brother and I stayed two different times at the Hotel Santo Tomas while we were preparing our trip to tour different parts of the country. Ricardo was very professional, helpful and friendly when we checked in and also when I visited a day early to learn a little more about the area and the location of the hotel. Really, the whole staff was very helpful. If you are renting a car, parking will cost you an additional $11 dollars a day but the staff is very good about letting you in and out of the secured parking area whenever you need it. The included breakfast was Coffee, juice, eggs, toast and fruit! San Jose is very different at night time so I would suggest you read other reviews regarding the location of the hotel. However, our stay there was very pleasant and we would certainly stay there again.

Thank you.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank wc_musicman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 May 2011

We're fairly adventerous travelers and I was looking for an "Authentic" experience to start our trip to Costa Rica, but didn't want to compromise on safety and cleanliness, especially on the first night in country. (my husband has travelled and lived in central america on a budget, so we're familiar with the not so nice kind of "authentic"!)
Hotel Santo Tomas is a wonderful combination of authentic, intimate San Jose style, with the service, amenities and comfort of a larger, less personal hotel.
We really enjoyed our stay. The staff are so very friendly and helpful--called cabs, great resturant recommendation (LaCriollita), looked up bus routes and printed schedules, etc,etc. The sheets were some of the nicest and most comfortable we had on our whole trip!

The location is super central, which is fabulous for exploring but also means that it's a few blocks away from some mediocre areas around the bus stations. But if you ask the desk for guidance, and have a downtown map, you'll be fine--don't let that scare you off! Leaving the crazy city streets and passing through the gates into the cool, quiet welcome of the hotel, passing through courtyards and tiled hallways on the way to your room makes you feel like you're really in another country, in a GOOD way!

(The "safe" was just a locked wooden end table, so we carried our valuables around with us becuase of the perceived insecurity, though the overall building security seemed very good.)

Overall a really good experience at an excellent price.

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Lissamcb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Swindon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
54 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 May 2011

This hotel is close to all the attractions in San Jose. Breakfast was good. We didn't try the restaurant in the evening. There are some cheap authentic eateries across the road if you don't want to go far. The rooms were nice although did smell a bit damp. There was internet in the hotel but it wasn't free like most of the hotels we stayed in in Costa Rica.

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Squeaky35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Las Cruces, NM
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 13 May 2011

I did not want a plaster palace like the Hilton.After checking the Internet I settled on the Hotel Santo Tomas and crossed my fingers.

It was all I could have wanted. At first glance I was taken aback by the look of the street and the locked gate, but the hotel is, above all, squeaky clean, the rooms, while lacking microwaves etc are spacious. The staff us very helpful and courteous. The decor is old world. The restaurant food is quite good with a good selection that is served beautifully. There are outdoor sitting areas and a small pool. I highly recommend this hotel.

Room Tip: If you hve trouble with steps, write ahead.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank LadyReaper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
USA
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 May 2011

Having stayed in almost all of the downtown San Jose Hotels over the last 15 years... it is one of my favorite resting spots and it easy to compare Santo Tomas with others. There are two reviews … within two reviews…

If you prefer the consistency and blandness of the Marriott, Courtyard, Hampton Inn, Holiday Inn, etc. then Santo Tomas is not for you. It is a unique facility designed and managed by an expat and managed by one of the savviest property mangers I have met in 44 years of travel.

Several years ago they realized that San Jose hotels in general fall into either cheap or bland categories. Santo Tomas was closer to the latter, and they set out to completely change the facility. During the construction phase, there were a few gringos who were unhappy with the ongoing renovations (and spoke loudly and accurately about the daytime noise.)

That was last year. So what do we have now? The on premise restaurant is a tiny jewel within the city. There are 12-14 tables with very attentive service. The chef prepares a nice variety of unique dishes and the manager is bi-lingual. Food presentation is an art form and akin to your expectations at a great sushi bar. Most meals are garnished with eye-pleasing fresh vegetables and are accompanied by delicious sauces. While sitting in the restaurant, you have 3 views: the television area, street watching (5 feet away) or a delightful interior courtyard with a cool pool and hot Jacuzzi. My usual table is poolside, but every now and then I prefer room service.

There is an exercise area that meets minimums, not terribly exciting, but frankly I seldom make travel decisions based on the available gym equipment. Above the gym is a new structure… an innovative open air, covered resting area with a large TV that is halfway up to the newer rooms. (There is no elevator but the staff considers it their job to get your bags upstairs.)

So the second part of the first story is that the older, economy rooms are smaller in back and noisier in the very front of the building. The interior downstairs rooms are well decorated and quiet. If you are traveling on a tight budget, the economy rooms fit the bill. For a few bucks more the new rooms are more spacious, and have either a comfortable balcony or a quieter, bright interior. All rooms have nice size flat screens, good cable selection and great Internet connection. Wi-Fi works well with several repeaters in the facility and wired is available if you plan on using VoIP for lengthy calls back home. (Bring your retractable Ethernet cable or ask for one from the front desk.)

Hotel Santo Tomas is one of the few value priced hotels I have experienced with a chef for your (cost included)_ breakfast. The “typical” breakfast includes fresh fruit, juice, eggs cooked to your liking, bread, CostaRican coffee and a few other amenities. It is basic but a cut above most others.

The second story begins with deciding about what you want when you visit Costa Rica. For first time visitors, Santo Tomas offers several advantages. If you are there for a week or more, do not rent a car at the airport. Take a taxi and rent a car after seeing a few sights within walking distance of the hotel. See the Jade and Gold museums. Walk the Mercado Central (Central Market) and take a short cab ride to the zoo (very small with indigenous species held in their native fauna and environment.) Also, look at some of the day trips… For the adventurous, the Pacuari river is one of the most beautiful I have ever experienced. The All-In-Ones are fun; the Arenal day trip is a stretch… but possible… For a romantic experience go there for two nights and experience the hot springs and poolside bars.

For world class fishing, catch a 25 minute flight to Quepos and expect to release at least 3 Sailfish (and maybe a Marlin) per day… stay in the quaint town of Quepos for a day… catch the 10 minute shuttle to Manuel Antonio nature preserve and beach. The return can be a fun (2.5 hr) express bus back to San Jose…. Be careful taking the bus from Quepos; purchase your bus ticket in advance… for the express and not the 4-hour local.)

Taxi’s are inexpensive, but if you still need to rent a car you will have saved the first few days rental and parking charges. (at this time you must use a public parking garage close to the Santo Tomas hotel.)

I almost forgot… for first time fishermen, the prime marlin/sailfish season runs Nov-Mar… Vigorously review the internet for seasonal changes in the migration patterns and also remember that the captain and his reputation is more important than the cost… The reviews (like this one) are absolutely key. I have had several fishing trips with unbelievable captain/mate combinations and a few bad ones as well… While the captains sometimes move up and down the coast with the fish, their reputations travel with them… Some just seem to be able to figure out where the billfish can be found. In 15 years I have brought over 100 sailfish and 12 marlin to boat in Costa Rica…. All were catch and release.

The final part of the second story is to “travel smart”. When you arrive at Hotel Santo Tomas the facility is street front and can be scary for the Marriott traveler. At night, always take a taxi. The guided tours are perfectly safe and relatively inexpensive. Travel throughout the country is very safe during daytime, but (like Detroit, South Miami and parts of London and San Francisco) I would recommend not walking alone on all the streets late at night.

Hotel Santo Tomas is an excellent gateway to and from the rest of the country.

Room Tip: mid-range priced rooms are several steps better.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank CaptainCruise
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these San Jose hotels
0.2 mi away
Hotel Presidente
Hotel Presidente
#6 of 84 in San Jose
4.5 of 5 bubbles 1,396 reviews
1.7 mi away
Apartotel La Sabana
Apartotel La Sabana
#4 of 84 in San Jose
4.5 of 5 bubbles 863 reviews
1.2 mi away
Hotel Grano de Oro San Jose
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.9 mi away
Hostel Casa Colon
Hostel Casa Colon
#29 of 84 in San Jose
4.0 of 5 bubbles 282 reviews
3.6 mi away
Isla Verde Hotel
Isla Verde Hotel
#12 of 84 in San Jose
4.5 of 5 bubbles 266 reviews
2.0 mi away
Barcelo San Jose
Barcelo San Jose
#14 of 84 in San Jose
4.0 of 5 bubbles 1,243 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Hotel Santo Tomas? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hotel Santo Tomas

Property: Hotel Santo Tomas
Address: Avenue 7 Between Streets 3 and 5 | Barrio Amon, 250 meters west of INS Building, San Jose 10101, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of San Jose > San Jose Metro > San Jose
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 84 Hotels in San Jose
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Santo Tomas 3*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A great downtown location in San Jose, Costa Rica. Hotel Santo Tomas provides free hot cooked to order breakfast, FREE Wi-Fi 20 Mbps, security box, swimming pool, hot Jacuzzi, gym, secure on site parking. Only four blocks from San Jose, Central Avenue and an easy stroll to most local attractions. Offering 30 non smoking rooms and has been newly renovated and expanded. Also available 24/7 : tour, travel & car rental services, currency exchange and laundry for our guests. Come and enjoy our wonderful open air gardens, flowers and covered terraces all to enjoy the volcano views here at Hotel Santo Tomas in San Jose, Costa Rica. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Priceline, Expedia, Hotels.com, Odigeo, TripOnline SA, Traveltool, S.L.U., Evoline ltd, Cancelon, HRS and HotelQuickly so you can book your Hotel Santo Tomas reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.

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