Arrived in Panama on Jan. 18 and spent 11 nights at the Royal Decameron and 3 night at Gamboa Rainforest hotel. I think everything has been written about these places but I will add my thoughts.
The Royal Decameron is very large and yes it is on a hill side so if mobility is a problem this may not be for you. We had on ocean view room in block 43 and it was wonderful. The view was beautiful and we were right by lobby 3 so in the morning you could go in the lobby and get your tea and coffee and sit out on the deck and enjoy. We made reservations most nights at the ala cartes and enjoyed them all. Do book early as they do fill up. the buffets were very good with lots of selection and the snack bars were great. You could get a burger or pizza as a light snack. Pools are plentiful and all very clean. The beach is the best thing there. Very long, soft sand and lots of chairs. Great for collecting shells and exploring. We did walk up to the golf course to see it and the villas. Lovely area but I was glad we were at the resort. You can make arrangement for a cart to get you around but people said they still had to wait. There is the usual water activities and we took advantage of them. Went out on the paddle boats, kayaks and did the katamaran twice. This will cost you $5 each if you need a staff member to take you out but it is well worth it.
We did the Anton Valley tour. We went to the zoo, the amphibian house and got to see the golden frog. Stop at the falls and then into town to shop or get a snack for a short time. We also did a 3 hour quad trip through hill and dale, creeks and fields. Highly recommend this. We took the bus to Peonome for $1.50 each for shopping. This is about a twenty minute ride and well worth going. Busses come right to the lobbies so it is easy.
The staff is wonderful, the grounds are lovely but it is hot and humid so be prepared for it.
After 11 nights we moved on to The Gamboa Rainforest hotel. We arranged to to the city tour and the locks that day so we could be dropped off at the Gamboa Hotel. This worked out great. The city tour was very good and we had the good fortune of see a cruise ship clear the Miraflores Lock. Wow it was something to see.
Now on to a little bit of negitive at the Gamboa Rainforest Hotel. The hotel lobby is beautiful, the rooms are great, the views of the canal are very good and check in and out was very easy. Pool area is very nice. The nice thing about being here is to book tours you are already there so you do not have a long but ride to get there. We did the Aeirial Tram and it is not to be missed. We also did Monkey Island and saw monkey's, sloths, crocs, and many many birds. The hotel also offers free guided walks in the rainforest and it was well worth it. We also did the night tour around the resort looking for animals.
Now some negitive. The staff is good but their hands are tied by the way it is managed. We were on the all inclusive plan but be aware it is not everything. The pool snack bar is not included nor is the Monkey bars meals. We had a bad experince one lunch. We were told that we would go to the buffet at the Marina but when we got there they told us they were too busy with tour groups and to come back after 2pm. This was not acceptable so we went back up to the main buffet and explained our problem. The hostess got her supervisor and he took us up to the Monkey Bar and had them serve us our choice of lunch at not charge. He handled this well but it should never have happened at.
All in all it was a very good trip and I do think I would go back again but would like to see different areas.