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A San José favorite since 1985, the Tropicana never fails to deliver spirited fun, though the quality of the food has decreased as prices have risen. The interior's high ceilings, wrought-iron balcony railings, and velvet banquettes give it a New Orleans bordello meets Spanish hacienda feel. The back courtyard is nearly as ornate, with a Mexican flair complete with a national flag, equipale chairs, and mariachi music live or recorded. The drinks are cold and generous and the food might satisfy American palates, but doesn’t have much style. Stay with the mid-price range dishes like fajitas, Mexican combos, and barbecue ribs, and splurge on lobster and shrimp elsewhere. The sidewalk palapa is a great place for people-watching during breakfast or lunch, and Sunday brunch the best deal. There’s live music most nights, from mariachis to Cuban bands to rock n roll.