Members Recommend
Very Good 517 Reviews
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This Hotel meets our standards
Our editors have been here and it has met our standards

What We Love

  • Lazing by the pool in the shade of the ancient, sprawling guanacaste tree—a perfect parasol for sun and rain
  • Subtle, stylish and unashamedly comfortable rooms that let the extraordinary views do the talking (all all rooms and suites have balconies overlooking the lush tropical garden)
  • La Luz: unpretentious fine dining at its best. Don't miss the churrasco chomes

What To Know

  • The Alta is a mountainside retreat, so you’ll need transport or a taxi to see the sights
  • By law, all Costa Rican buildings are smoke-free


  •  Bar
  •  Free WiFi
  •  Gym
  •  Handicap Accessible
  •  Parking On Site
  •  Pool
  •  Restaurant
  •  Room Service
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.
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City living meets mountainside retreat, with old-school style and drop-dead views of bustling San José

The Lowdown

The Alta has settled into its spectacular mountain setting with a clever balance of contemporary style and Old World charm. The castle-like lobby and hallways blend terrazzo floors with soft lilac and gray walls strewn with black-and-white photos from 1920s Costa Rica. A reception desk of riveted metal gives a nod toward its owner’s classic tastes and airline background. The winding stone stairway brings a change of scene: terra-cotta tile floors and elegant guest rooms with Italian leather chairs, deep, soft beds and balconies that serve up sweeping views of the Costa Rican capital, volcanoes and forests that stretch all the way to the Pacific. Guest rooms tone down the Old World feel with a soft, muted palette, airy rooms to relax, and floor-to-ceiling wooden doors and simple stone balconies that put the spotlight on those gorgeous views. Back on ground level, the oval pool is a great place to relax with a cold Grenache Blanc from the well-considered wine list. Under the watchful eye of chef Angelo, the La Luz restaurant serves fine dining for breakfast, lunch, and dinner with organic ingredients bought locally. A light lunch menu blends traditional Costa Rica with Mediterranean touches (think sea bass ceviche, salmon quesadillas, and tuna poki), while dinner expands the pasta and meat options with local twists (rack of lamb with organic coffee sauce; huge churrasco chomes with homemade chimichurri sauce). Work off dinner in the small but well-equipped gym or book an in-room spa treatment from the nearby Portadas spa.

In the Area

The Alta is on the outskirts above San José, and the nearest hub is well-heeled Santa Ana, rich in artisan crafts stores, well-to-do locals and easy-living expats, all engulfed in the aroma of extravagant flower stalls and stands overflowing with sweet onions, a local crop. Browse indigenous arts and crafts at Ceramica Las Palomas, shop till you drop in Costa Rica’s largest mall, Multiplaza Escazú. And no Costa Rican experience is complete without a visit to a volcano; fortunately, the extraordinary Poas Volcano National Park is only a 45-minute drive away.

How to Get There

Hotel Alta Las Palomas
Alto de las Palomas
Escazu, undefined Costa Rica


4.5 Very Good 517 Reviews
Lovely hotel
Reviewed 7 days ago

Our first night on our first trip to Costa Rica we stayed at hotel Alta. Couldn’t imagine a nicer place to arrive at! Gorgeous room with a stunning bathroom and amazing balcony overlooking the gardens and city. Food in the hotel was nice, breakfast in particular was delicious. It was a shame we only had 1 night here, would definitely recommend!

It was ok
Reviewed 1 week ago

So we stayed here the last night of our honeymoon and it is indeed a beautiful hotel and view at first.

The staff was luke warm and didnt come off super friendly, they did send up some complimentary treats for our honeymoon which were amazing, but when i asked what they were the girl chuckled and walked away.

We had a master suite and the bathroom was great. Water pressure was alright, but the shower hot and cold was one extreme or the other for the most part.

The bed was practically like sleeping on a hard box, the only part i really didnt like.

We went to the pool and hot tub, but couldnt find the button for the hot tub jets. We asked a gentleman in the bar area and he said the pool and hot tub werent heated...soooo theres that.

Breakfast was again alright, had we had more time, probably would have gone somewhere else.

But overall for a nights stay, could have been worse.

Good Choice to See the Central valley
Reviewed 1 month ago

I was on my way from the SJO airport to Playa Herradura and wanted to spend one evening in the Central Valley. I chose Alta Las Palomas mainly based on Trip Advisor reviews. I was not disappointed. Check in was quick and painless though I found the afternoon check in woman somewhat aloof and condescending - certainly in no mood to be engaging. Maybe just a bad day for her. This was in contrast to a very friendly blond server in the restaurant that came to my aid seeing I was lost in finding the stairs to my room. Not only did she show me to my room but helped me with the luggage. I regret not getting a chance to thank her with an extra gratuity at dinner but she was not working as she thought she might have been. It was very quiet after all with only three tables occupied.

The room (34) was nice, large enough with a good sized bathroom. I called in advance to make sure I got a balcony with a view as this made the stay for me. There is a beautiful view of the Central valley and the pool area.

The food at the restaurant lives up to its reputation. Both dinner and breakfast was superb as was the service. Estaban is the morning person at the front. He was very nice and engaging and was able to fill me in on some of the history of the hotel and the area. I walked around all the grounds to try and find Alta the cat but to no avail on this visit. Overall great spot.

Your Private Escapade
Reviewed 2 months ago

I recently traveled to Costa Rica for the first time and I had an amazing experience.
My group stayed at the beautiful Hotel Alta Las Palomas. The location is not too far from downtown. The general area is upscale and safe.
The staff that worked there we grew very fond of and got to know better since we went during Holy Week and a lot of people were away. The front desk was very helpful in getting our group cabs or ride-shares. The house coffee was sensationally addicting and is nothing like what we get in the United States. The library area was my favorite personal spot.
The restaurant staff was excellent and the food was very good in which included traditional Costa Rican dishes. Cristina was astounding and her professionalism in the restaurant was remarkable.
Here are just a few pointers for management
1. Install wifi extenders or pods throughout the hotel to get better signals
2. Setup portable DynaTraps for the mosquitos near the pool area.
3. Vending machines that sell medicine including repellant or benadryl for bites
Other than those three items, we had a fantastic experience because of management and the hotel staff. Thank you!

Fabulous hotel
Reviewed 3 months ago

This hotel is about 30 minutes away from the San Jose airport and we decided to stay here on the first and last night of our trip through Costa Rica. The property is located on a hill and surrounded by a beautiful garden. The hotel is clean, the staff very friendly and courteous, and the food at the restaurant is delicious. We loved this place because it has character (it's not your typical American chain hotel) and is located in a good neighborhood. We fell asleep to the sound of the wind and slept really well on the firm mattresses that seem to be typical for Costa Rica. The rooms that we stayed in were spacious, had a fridge, a balcony, and a nice view of the valley. We would definitely stay here again and can highly recommend this hotel.