Pros

  • Small family-owned hotel conveniently near the airport
  • An all-day restaurant and bar serves food; room service also available
  • Breakfast is included and can be taken to-go
  • Rooms are equipped with coffeemakers and flat-screen TVs
  • Three rooms have in-room jetted tubs
  • Solar heated infinity pool and hot tub are well-maintained
  • Local and international phone calls available
  • 24-hour gym has a handful of machines and large windows
  • Free Wi-Fi and airport transfers
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Cons

  • Despite the outdoorsy name, this city hotel is best for those in transit
  • Bathrooms could use some updating
  • Infinity pool doesn’t have much of a view and can be chilly
  • Overall decor is bland, with an emphasis on tiling
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Bottom Line

The friendly 34-room hotel is centrally-located to the airport and downtown San José -- about 10 minutes away from each -- making it a great value for those in transit. While the average stay is one or two nights, some (mostly group bookings) base their entire vacation here, and take off for day trips and excursions. Owned and managed by a Canadian father-son duo, the mid-range property features spacious rooms that have hand-painted murals and walk-in showers (be careful with that step). There is also a solar-heated infinity pool, hot tub, gym, and restaurant with free breakfast. The hotel makes it known that it prefers direct bookings; guests also receive a 10-percent discount if paying with cash. Early departures can take their breakfast to-go.

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Amenities

  • Cribs
  • Fitness Center
  • Internet
  • Jacuzzi
  • Pets Allowed
  • Pool

Oyster Hotel Review

Adventure Inn

Scene

A cheerful and reliable airport base that's convenient for families, friends, and groups.

Those who book directly with the hotel will likely feel that they know the owner before they arrive, having already corresponded with Eric Robinson, who handles all reservations and takes pride in providing newcomers with a plethora of helpful advice (via e-mail) on San José and Costa Rica. Eric bought the place in 2004 (this is his sixth hotel) and has quite a background in hospitality and environmentalism; he is often around to chat with guests. His son Mike manages the property, and together they work to make improvements to the family business. For instance, an infinity pool was installed in 2009, and other renovation projects are the works. They also brainstorm to provide unique promotions -- for instance, one special offered guests the use of a cell phone with GPS.

The hotel exterior has a distinct coral hue and those with a rental car can park in the lot near the door, or pull around the entrance to unload luggage. Statues of stoic figures lead to a pale yellow lobby adorned with authentic bamboo and stone walls, fresh plants, and hand-painted murals (a theme that extends to other common areas). The front desk staff provides a friendly welcome, and the hotel attracts a mixture of couples, friends and families for a laid-back vibe. With the full-service restaurant, bar and pool area -- all attached to each other -- most guests stick to the property during their short stays, though there are some things within walking distance including casinos, a bowling alley, a convenience store, and a Cineplex Theatre. It’s an easy and restful stopover to ease the transition into the country before embarking on other adventures (hence the name). It's so easy, that many choose to stay a night on their way back to the airport -- after their adventures -- before going home. 

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Location

A residential setting halfway between the city and the airport, with free shuttle service to SJO aiport.

Adventure Inn is located in San José -- Costa Rica’s capital and largest city. The residential area where the hotel calls home is a safe neighborhood of mostly expats, with easy access to a supermarket and restaurants within walking distance, or a short drive away. A major draw is that it is only a 10-minute drive from Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO). Another draw: It only takes 10 to 15 minutes to drive to cultural landmarks such as the National Theatre, National Cathedral, Gold Museum, Plaza de La Cultura and Art Museum. Since San José's "el centro" -- the downtown center, and also the base for the country's corporate, banking, and political offices -- is not everyone's cup of tea, this hotel is a good choice for those who prefer to be a bit further removed from the hustle and bustle. 

Leisure travelers typically stay in San José for a night or two while in transit to or from the airport. The location is under two hours to the Pacific coast; alternatively, guests can stay here and take day trips and excursions to places like Arenal Volcano and nearby hot springs, which the hotel will gladly arrange. For those who have a car, there are several parking spots near the entrance. Adventure Inn also offers free shuttle service to and from the airport.

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Rooms

Clean, spacious, and low-priced -- the Jacuzzi rooms are a touch more romantic 

This comfortable family-owned hotel has 34 rooms decorated with tile floors, wood furnishings, and unique hand-painted murals of tropical scenes. All standard rooms have two orthopedic Queen-sized beds, A/C, free local and international phone calls, coffeemakers with local coffee, and flat-screen TVs with over 80 channels in English/Spanish. A dining table and two chairs can also be used for working (and there is free Wi-Fi throughout). Bathrooms are simple, but dingy tiles seem past their prime, and guests should be careful stepping into the walk-in showers.

In addition to the standard rooms, there are three bigger rooms with some extras -- better suited for romantics or small families. These either have two Queen-sized beds or one King-sized bed, and come equipped with jetted bathtubs, mini-fridges, microwaves, and porches. A twin bed can be added for kids. 

In-room dining is available.

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Features

This eco-friendly hotel offers a standout free breakfast with some truly exotic fruits.

The Moon Glow restaurant is located on the first floor, conveniently between the lobby and pool. The main dining room -- though a bit dark during the day -- is decorated with indigenous art like the large Guanacaste tree in the center of the room, and hand-painted wall murals. The bar and restaurant serves family-friendly fusion cuisine, snacks, beer, and tropical cocktails, as well as wines by the glass. There are a number of seating areas with low-top tables, seats at the bar, high-top tables in the sun room, or a few tables and umbrellas next to the pool. Breakfast starts early in the morning and begins with a self-serve buffet spread with tropical exotic fruits (some that seem unfamiliar), cereals, cheese, banana bread, Costa Rican coffee, and juice. Guests then order a main course from a server, which may include eggs (any style), pancakes, French toast, or the local "Gallo Pinto." If checking out before service begins, ask the front desk to pack a to-go kit with fresh fruit, cookies, and a drink for the journey.

Beyond the restaurant is a pretty terrace with an infinity pool and hot tub -- built in 2009 -- surrounded with a few sun loungers. The word infinity shouldn't be taken too seriously as the pool doesn’t have much of a view due to it's residential setting, but it is well-maintained. At night, it glows with bright colors against sunset skies for a touch of romantic ambiance. Both the pool and attached hot tub are solar heated, but temperatures may still be on the cooler side -- especially on overcast days. This is common for outdoor pools in San José, as the city has a cooler climate due to its mountainous surroundings. On the second floor of the hotel is a 24-hour gym with cardio machines and weights. The room has large windows to let in natural light. 

The owner will gladly book tours and excursions before arriving, via e-mail. Otherwise, the front desk staff can help with activities and transportation, including car rentals. Free Wi-Fi, secure parking and airport transfers all add to the value and popularity of Adventure Inn. 

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Best Rates

Amenities

  • Airport Transportation

  • Babysitting Services

  • Business Center

  • Cable

  • Children's Pool

  • Concierge

  • Cribs

  • Dry Cleaning

  • Fitness Center

  • Free Breakfast

  • Internet

  • Jacuzzi

  • Kids Allowed

  • Laundry

  • Pets Allowed

  • Pool

  • Poolside Drink Service

  • Rental Car Service Desk Onsite

  • Room Service

  • Swim-Up Bar

  • Tennis Court

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.