Even in destinations like Costa Rica full of adventure possibilities, sometimes you just want to start your vacation with a total relaxation in a beautiful place, especially if you arrive just in time to celebrate New Year’s Eve. This is exactly what my son and I did at Costa Rica Marriott Hotel San Jose. We enjoyed every minute of our stay at this outstanding facility.
From the moment I took a look at pictures of Costa Rica Marriott Hotel San Jose I knew it was the place where I wanted to spend New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day with my son, Daniel, at the beginning of our trip to Costa Rica. It was our first trip together in six years and I wanted to make it special. Without hesitation, I decided to use all my points I received for opening Marriott Credit Card by Chase (see how using credit cards can generate free travel) and I am certainly glad I did it.
What Works for Families at Costa Rica Marriott Hotel San Jose
It was very important to us that the hotel was close to the airport. We got up 3:30 AM and arrived at San Jose around 2 PM. By the time we were done with immigration and customs, we were hot and exhausted. Our taxi ride was less than 10 minutes, it cost only $11, and I was able to pay with a credit card!
It felt good to arrive at our spacious air conditioned room. Normally, I prefer modern looking décor but in Costa Rica Marriott San Jose a traditional style is the only way to match the hacienda theme of the hotel.
Our room was large and delivered exactly what I asked for when making my reservation, an outdoor space. We could walk out to the pool and most importantly just sit outside and enjoy the views of the mountains. In my opinion it was one of the best rooms in entire property.
From the minute we arrived, I was impressed with an inviting hacienda style architecture. The building is very airy with many open spaces allowing for a gentle breeze. It turned out it was built as a Marriott hotel from the start, nineteen years ago, but with its great attention to details it looked to me like a historic building.
The interior decoration was as impressive as the architecture. Despite the fact that we were surrounded by palm trees, the holiday charm was shining through. Every area was tastefully decorated and beautifully blended with the style.
There were great outdoor areas everywhere including outside seating in multiple restaurants. I loved it!
The main pool, just by our door, was large and inviting. The area was well taken care for and situated by restaurants and bar. At night, the palm trees around the pool were decorated with lights which added a lot of charm.
Both nights we spent at the hotel were around 75 F so a hot tub felt great. It was huge!
Places to Eat and Food
There are a lot of places to eat at the hotel. Majority of them offer an outdoor sitting which I loved. For New Year’s Eve we opted for a buffet style dinner. The food was out of this world! Worth to know that the coffee/gift shop is open 24/7 and offers lunch style food at any time of the day.
Not every a New Year is welcomed by Marriott San Jose with fireworks but we were lucky. The hotel hosted a private event which ended with a fantastic display of fireworks.
What Does Not Work for Families at Costa Rica Marriott Hotel San Jose
Even though I paid for the room with points, it was an expensive stay because we ate at the hotel for two days. The food was delicious but pricey. We paid around $55 per person for a New Year’s Eve buffet which included all you can eat and a small glass of champagne.
There is a second smaller pool at the property but I did not see anyone using it. It looks great on the pictures and from a distance but in reality it was not inviting. It was covered with leaves.
Not enough information about events taking place at the resort
We received a letter informing that there will be fireworks at midnight but I wished there was more information about other events. All day long I could hear a DJ and nice music coming from the hotel’s courtyard but I thought it was going to be a private event.
At the end of the day, I realized it probably was not. I am guessing it was for all guests to enjoy but no one knew about it so for the most part the area remained empty.
Also there was no information about dining choices for the night. For the buffet, we did not know that deserts were served in another room and we almost missed them.
Main pool area could use more lights
Unlike the small pool, the large pool was well kept but at night it was losing its charm. There were only two underwater lights which illuminated one side of the pool. It would be much more pleasing for the eye if an entire pool was well lit.
It was a great idea to have palm trees decorated with lights but it felt like an unfinished project. It just stopped randomly. A few more strings would make the whole area look more festive. I hope this purple lights are kept all year long.
Not a hotel for young adults
There was a little action on New Year’s Eve but the next day by 10 PM it was very quiet. It was disappointing for my son and even for me. On the other hand, I am sure people with small children and elderly appreciated that on their vacation.
After two great days of relaxation we were ready to start exploring Costa Rica and its national parks.