Iglesia de la Soledad
La Iglesia de la Soledad is one of the few churches undamaged by earithquakes, maintaining much of its orginal architectural elements of the neo-baroque movement. Last year the church was fundraising on Facebook in order to make necesasry updates to the facade and electrical systems.
A few weeks ago work began on the exterior and here we can see the front face with a beautiful new paint job and the addition of gold trimmings. As work continues this church regains its original luster.
The past 3 years have seen some remarkable restorations of more than 20 buildings in downtown San Jose but the same marvel persists in all cases. Buildings are individually restored but entire blocks continue to clash in a 'visual cacaphony'. For example this beautiful church is 50 meters from the recently completed "Barrio Chino" pictured below, each individually interesting but difficult to imagine next to one another. I've decided San Jose's lack of themes is its theme.
To see some more of the best architectural clashes in the city book our Bird's Nest Tour for $22.
The gateway to Barrio Chino is now complete. What's left is the filling in of new commercial space in the same block. To date you can still find a corner bar, fabulous bakery, hardware store, street pizza, ice cream and a Claro store.
Unfortunately nothing chinese greets you at the entrance to this new piece of architecture but if you wonder far enough south you will find chinese restaurants, supermarkets and trinket stores.
For more history on why there are Chinese people in Costa Rica and why this new gateway was created book our Bird's Nest Tour for $22.
One of the top 20 most interesting buildings in San Jose, Costa Rica is the crumbling Botica Solera art-deco style building in Barrio Mexico. The municipality of San Jose has announced that $25,000 worth of emergency repair work will begin shortly to save the building from rain and vandal damage.
In 2006, the mayor of San Jose had promised this building would be restored and converted into a library. After battling with the ownership, 24 people in total, repairs can finally move forward. This immediate work is expected to be finished by the end of 2011. Time will tell when a full restoration will take place, $200,000 was alloted for the project.
Once an old drugstore, this building’s intrigue factor is it’s triangle formation. It forms a peak at a main intersection and juts back towards the south. Botica Solera joins Casa Jimenez on the list of recent rescue repairs being carried out in San Jose. It is best to visit this building by car as it’s a precarious neighborhood for tourists and locals alike.
To see more historic buildings in San Jose try one of our walking tours or yoga/massage packages.
Photo from La Nacion.
It's impossible to walk by this architectural marvel, crumbling right before your eyes, and not want to know it's story, to rescue it, to see it live again.
This beautiful and mysterious building is Casa Jiménez. Built in 1905 it was designed by it's original owner, lawyer and diplomat Manuel Francisco Jiménez Ortiz. It is one of the only remaining Art Nouveau style buildings in the city, and it's a feature on our Bird's Nest Tour.
We are excited to announce that a few weeks ago La Nacion ran a story reporting that work would start in about 15 days to initially repair the roof and exterior parts suffering great damage. On tour this week we saw that the work has begun! Can't wait to see what the future will bring to this historic gem.
By Stacey Auch.