San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

New San José hotel creates collage of art, hospitality

Taking its name from a space of artistic creativity, the new Studio Hotel promises relaxation through inspiration in Santa Ana, southwest of San José.

Petite chandeliers light the sculptures and paintings that dot the lobby. Some works are on loan while others will decorate the walls for years to come.

“The idea was to create a themed hotel,” said Juan Villegas, assistant sales executive for the hotel. “Art is everywhere you look here.”

Costa Rican photographer Joaquín Murillo created photos for the hotel’s 82 rooms. Murillo’s images feature strong lines and bold colors that complement the hotel’s clean and cozy design concept.

“We wanted to work with macro details that would show the nature of the country in all its splendor but that took it one step closer,” Murillo said.

Studio Hotel 3

Standard guest room features work by Tico photographer Joaquín Murillo.

Alberto Font

Each room features its own photo from a collection shot all over the country over the course of four months.

“It was an enriching experience,” Murillo said. “Studio Hotel wants to become a platform that promotes quality art in Costa Rica.”

Elsewhere in the hotel, the art is a blend of styles from Costa Rica, Guatemala and Italy, home of Studio Hotel owner Aldo Annese.

With the theme established and the doors open since July, the staff now focuses on creating an environment that caters to professionals and tourists alike. Each room is equipped with cable TV, wireless Internet, a large desk and a safe for storing laptops and other valuables.

“Executives can come here to relax but still work if they need to,” Villegas said.

Work can be done inside or in the rooftop pool area, which features a bar and views of the surrounding mountains. Around the corner is a conference room large enough for 140 people, but productive meetings may be difficult with only a floor-to-ceiling window separating the meeting space from the pool and mountain views.

Studio Hotel isn’t just for businesspeople, however; its location makes it attractive to all kinds of visitors. 

“We are in a great location for guests,” Villegas said. “The hotel is surrounded by businesses, tourist activities and restaurants.”

Guests can walk or take a short cab ride to any number of restaurants, bars, shopping malls and other nearby attractions. 

Studio Hotel

Studio Style: Public spaces at Santa Ana’s new Studio Hotel feature artwork by Costa Rican and international artists.

Alberto Font

Studio Hotel also offers its own dining and relaxation options. The lobby bar overlooks a small dining room and adjoins a banquet hall with room for 100 people. The bar serves a variety of salads and sandwiches. The dinner menu changes daily and often features Italian cuisine. 

Studio Hotel has all the necessary amenities for visitors traveling on business or pleasure. The staff is extremely polite, and seem happy to help guests enjoy Santa Ana’s newest venture in hospitality and culture.

Going There

Studio Hotel is 50 meters north of the Red Cross in Santa Ana. 

Rates start at $95 for a standard room, $115 for a superior room and $125 for a junior suite, including breakfast buffet and access to the gym and pool. Four wheelchair-accessible or handicapped-friendly rooms are available. Prices do not include tax.

For information and reservations, call 2282-0505 or visit

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