The most developed and closest to San Jose is San Rafael de Escazu. The Central Plaza with its colonial white church and the Plaza Colonial shopping center is a hub of activity and the area is bursting with international restaurants and fancy condos. Walking through town you can’t fail to notice the homes and businesses decorated with flowers and plants, or the large English-speaking ex-pat community that resides here.
Escazu Centro, as the barrio of San Miguel de Escazu is known, is a mile up the hill and centers around the colonial-era town square with its red-roofed church and numerous bars, taverns and restaurants which line the narrow streets. It has a typically Tico ambience about it and beckons you to amble along unhurriedly and take in the sights.
The quietest neighborhood, San Antonio de Escazu, is further north still and has a more rural feel about it and is almost entirely residential. Again, an elegant church is the main feature of a central square and the area is popular among ex-pats for its small-town feel.
The hills north of Escazu will afford you magnificent views across the valley and town and there are hiking trails and the Escazu Hills Sanctuary to explore, as well as a luxurious spa/casino to unwind in and take in the city sights without expending the energy.
Dental patients who are looking for somewhere with a big city buzz and amenities, but without the frenetic pace, will find Escazu suits them perfectly. There are plenty of attractions nearby to enjoy in between your dental visits, but it is also easy to get away and explore a little further afield.
Escazu is in Costa Rica’s Central Valley, around 4 miles (7 kms) southwest of San Jose.
One of the many benefits of traveling to Costa Rica, particularly for American and Canadian dental patients, is its close proximity. There are frequent flights from across the US and Canada to various points in Costa Rica, although San Jose is still the most popular destination. A short taxi ride from San Jose’s international airport will bring you into Escazu with the minimum of fuss. For some patients visiting dentists in San Jose, particularly those that may require multiple visits, journey time and ease of access could well be an important factor.
Of course, dental expertise and know-how is another consideration. Costa Rica may well have a laidback air about it but there is nothing nonchalant about its dental and medical services. Prestigious JCI accredited hospitals and modern dental clinics ably demonstrate that Costa Rica very much offers patients high-quality facilities and expert medical care.
In common with other Central American countries, many dentists opt to take their specialist training in America, with many having professional membership of the American Dental Association, as well as international organizations, such as the International Congress of Oral Implantologists.
Escazu has all the modern conveniences any 21st century traveler would expect, making your day-to-day experience enjoyable. Fantastic weather and a variety of activities suiting all ages and abilities means it is a great place to visit, whether for dental care, or a holiday – or both.
While Costa Rica has long been a popular holiday destination for North Americans, it is only recently that it has become popular for medical and dental tourism. The facilities and care are more than a match compared to facilities at home, but the prices are what initially draws most people here as they average around 70% less.
Take a look at the average prices for some popular procedures in Escazu:
• Average cost of a single dental crown in the US $1,200, At a Distrito Federal dentist as little as $350• Average cost of root canal, post and crown in the US$2,200, At a Distrito Federal dentist only $900• Average cost of dental implant and crown in the US$3,900, At a Distrito Federal dentist around $1,500
(Image by: Autentico Adventures Costa Rica)
You will find most of the well-known international hotel chains in Escazu as well as luxury boutique and independent hotels. Center of town or up in the hills – there is a good choice, no matter what your preferences are.
Many of our dentists also offer discounted or free accommodation options, depending on the nature of your treatment. Check out the listings of each clinic on our site for further information.
Yes – there are no US governmental advisory warnings for Costa Rica and it is a very safe place to visit.
The quality of care in Escazu is just as good as it is at home, providing you do a little research. Dental Departures undertakes a number of processes to ensure our dentists are reliable and up to the job, so you are assured of a quality experience.
Our background checks include dental licence verifications – all dentists must be licensed to practice – and we list qualifications on our website.
We also provide high-resolution photos of the clinics and ask patients to provide reviews of their experiences. We publish all of these reviews – both the good and the bad (fortunately there are very few of the latter) – which you can read for yourself on our site.
We provide as much information as we can so that you can decide for yourself if a particular dentist or clinic is right for you. Of course, we are always happy to answer any questions you may have and our Customer Care Team are very knowledgeable and always happy to help, no matter what your question.
All of our verified dentists throughout Costa Rica provide warranties and guarantees on the work they carry out, as well as on any materials used, so that includes dentures, crowns, veneers and other prosthetics you may have fitted.
The length of the guarantee varies from clinic to clinic, and also depends on what work you have done, but you can find out the exact details on the clinic listing on our site, or give our Customer Care team a call.
Should there be a problem with your dental treatment your dentist in Escazu will remedy it free-of-charge. However, if you are concerned about the cost of travel and accommodation expenses in case you do need to return to your dentist, we have got together with some insurance providers who will insure against these costs for a low premium. For your total peace of mind we think this small additional cost is definitely worth considering.
(Image by: Peter Andersen)
Our dentists in Escazu are English speaking and additionally, Escazu has a large ex-pat community so English is widely spoken throughout the city.
US cash is accepted by our dentists but you will find what other payments are accepted by each clinic by checking the individual clinic listings on our website. Personal and travelers checks, bank transfers and debit/credit cards are accepted widely, but there may be a small processing fee of between 3-4% for credit card payments.
It is unlikely that your dentist in Escazu will be able to accept US or Canadian dental insurance, but if you check with your insurance provider whether they allow for ‘out-of-network’ expenses you may be able to reclaim the costs when you go home.
Be sure to obtain the appropriate paperwork and documentation from your insurance company to bring with you to your dental appointment.
You can visit our dentists at any time as they are open all year round.
The weather is good throughout the year too, which means you can take advantage of off-peak discounts on accommodation and air fares. Peak times tend to be from December through April.
Some parts of Escazu are wheelchair friendly and other parts are more difficult. There are plenty of wheelchair-friendly hotels and, of course, the new US-style shopping malls are easy to navigate in a wheelchair. Some of the narrow streets around the city may be more problematical with a lack of sidewalks and, of course, traveling to some of the neighborhoods up the hillsides could well be hard work.
All of our dentists are wheelchair accessible, and some offer complimentary pick-up services. Just speak to one of our Customer Care team to discuss your requirements in greater detail – we can always find a way to get you to one of our dentists.
What is the downside? What should I know about visiting?
Tico’s are generally laidback people and things may take a little longer than they do at home. Learn to relax, and go with the flow – you’re on holiday after all.
The bus system in Escazu is clean and reliable, and is an easy and inexpensive way of getting around the various neighborhoods, as well as into San Jose.
In Escazu Centro you’ll find most of the things you need, as well as other gems such as the Butterfly Kingdom - an oasis with friendly, knowledgeable staff and many different species of butterflies. Discover fascinating facts about their lifecycle and surround yourself with a rainbow of color in the butterfly enclosure.
If shopping is one of your favorite pastimes, Escazu Centro has it covered – and you can shop ‘till you drop in huge malls like the Multiplaza; check out fresh produce at the Saturday morning Farmers’ Market in the center of town or visit workshops such as Biesanz Woodwork where you can see traditional craftsmen at work, buy souvenirs in the art gallery and relax in the surroundings of the botanical garden and pond.
Sports and recreational facilities, including bowling, swimming, tennis, a gym and a golf course can be found at the Costa Rica Country Club, as well as several bars and restaurants.
Escazu’s valley location means, of course, that the natural surroundings – while providing awe-inspiring views – also offers a host of activities and adventures for all ages and abilities.
Adventure tourist companies focusing on eco-tourism and wildlife observation create unique experiences for travelers to discover Costa Rica’s flora, fauna and beautiful countryside. One of the most popular activities in the area is white water rafting on the Pacuare River, with trips from aged 14 years and up for beginners to experienced.
(Image by: Victor Quirós A)
The nearest international airport is Aeropuerto Internacional Juan Santamaria (SJO), just north of San Jose in Alajeula and around 20 minutes drive away from Escazu.
You don’t need a car in Escazu but if you would like to see more of Costa Rica it is generally a pleasant way to get about, save for San Jose which is overcrowded with difficult parking. Driving in Costa Rica is reasonably safe and you’ll find most major car rental agencies in San Jose.
Cheap and plentiful and from San Jose travelling to pretty much anywhere in the country.
A reasonable option for getting around, but most aren’t metered so it’s best to negotiate your fare in advance.
• Aeropuerto Internacional Juan Santamaria: 12 miles (20 kms), 21 mins• San Jose: 4 miles (7 kms), 12 mins• Alajeula: 14 miles (22 kms), 26 mins• Puntarenas: 58 miles (94 kms), 2 hours• Limon : 104 miles (165 kms), 2.5 hours
Book online or call our toll-free number to book an appointment with one of our dentists in Escazu. If you have any questions, or want to discuss your arrangements our Customer Care team are always here to help. We put you in touch with quality-checked dentists and always offer you the best prices available with our exclusive discounts.
(Main image by: Rodtico 21)