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“Nice place, but nothing special”

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Gamboa Rainforest Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Gamboa
Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
52 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Nice place, but nothing special”
Reviewed 20 January 2012

Went to Gamboa Rainforest Resort from a package I brought on the internet. It is very close to the city of Panama and easy to get to which is a plus in some ways. Upon arriving we had to wait about 30 minutes or more to check in as a coach load of tourists arrived. We checked in and with resorts like this I would expect to be greeted with a welcome drink but we were not. In the evening we ate at the bar and had a fantastic burger, followed by a short night tour around the resort looking for wildlife which was nothing amazing and something we could of done ourself. The enxt day we did a tour around the nature reserve which we were put under pressure to go around as quickly as possible making it difficult to appreciate everything at our own pace.

The bedroom was nice with a balcony and hammock - nice feature. The nest day the hot water did not work for 20 minutes, but eventually was fixed.

All in all a nice place but needs work.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank SimonEat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Cold Lake, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2012

Beautiful place , wonderfully decorated and situated ,needs. Some paint , as rooms and parts of building starting to show wear. Hope they keep place up as it is very spectacular.
Service in the monkey bar and pool bar terribly slow, hope the figure out if they put a little hustle in it , western Canadians tip great, lots of regular hotel business there as well (not all inclusive) and those people seemed to get better service , maybe better tips ?? I am unsure,
All inclusive does not include eating at pool snack bar or at the lounge ? Beautiful huge rooms , hammocks on the balconies . Front desk very eager to help .
Cash mini bars in room very expensive .But all in all a great experience!

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank JustAnnette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2012

Did the split, 5 days at decameron and 3 at gamboa. To sum it all up the food is great!, for a buffet, I was really surprised how delicious everything was. Theres only 2 bars, the pool bar, not so great for service, but the one in the main lobby is great, they make you great pina coladas, tequila sunrise, you name it. They do have a disco, but if theres not a lot of ppl there they close it early(like 11:30 was the earliest), though they were nice enough to let us dj the party...despite there only being 5 ppl there.

We also stayed in a villa, definatly too big for the two of us, great for families. Would of actually prefered a room in the main builing, which has a hammock and doesnt require much walking. The only complaint i would have to say is that the resort is open to the public and i feel like they get better service then the all inclusive guests, but it wasnt the worst thing in the world.

Monkey Island is a must, about $40 a person, you always see monkeys! and in some of the pics they show ppl feeding them, well on our tour we were told that its not allowed beacsue the monkeys have bit ppl in the past as well as its not natural for them, which was perfectly understandable and still a lot of fun. I wish we would have done more excursions, but just way too exausted! They also have bikes you can take out for free, i think from 9 to 5.

Basically if you dont want to be bored, go on excursions. Overall I dont think I would go back to this resort, only because I enjoy doing things at night, but if you've never been, you should go once to experience the beauty of the rainforest and the resort is nice and i think for me 2 nights was good enough.

if you have any questions, feel free to email me at crosario@live.ca

Room Tip: If theres more than 2 staying in one room, do the villa, theres 2 bedrooms and 3 beds, if not get a...
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank xoxocicixoxo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2012

Fair if not good prices on food and room service. Front desk is a bit lame, and the rooms are not posh by any standard. Thin doors/walls meant hearing the conversation from our neighbors until we got an unattached room.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DrAlexVasquez
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gamboa_Resort, Case Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this review, 20 January 2012
We appreciate you sharing your thoughts. They are very helpful, as hearing from our guest is the best way to know what are we doing right and what may need our attention.
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LA
Level Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 January 2012

This hotel is gorgeous! It's in the middle of the rainforest and each room has a hammock in the balcony. The pictures on the website do not do it justice. The view from the lobby, the rooms, and the outside hallways are amazing! It is the only hotel in the rainforest. I can't say enough how beautiful the view from the hotel was. Meals could be eaten outside facing the beautiful views and they were some of the most relaxing/peaceful times that I had in Panama.

Some cons: The breakfast that is included is just okay. There was a lizard in our room when we first checked in (I hear that is normal in the rainforest) but they changed our room right away and even upgraded us to a suite. They claim they are a 5 star but I would compare it to an american 3.5 star...but then again it is in the middle of the rainforest which is something you can't get in the U.S. They don't give you any info on the other tours so that if you haven't researched, you are forced to use theirs.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank cicixee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gamboa_Resort, Case Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this review, 20 January 2012
Thank you for everything you said. Those are the kind of things that reward our efforts and renew our commitment to guest satisfaction. We will continue to improve our service so when our customers return, they'll do it for a even better experience. Come back soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Erin, ON
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 January 2012

We stayed at the Gamboa for the last 2 nights of our stay in Panama. The resort is very nice, more "swanky" than the all inclusive we stayed at for the first 5 night (Royal Decameron). It is also alot quieter and really quite boring.

We did the aerial tram tour - amazing!!!!! Love the rainforest. Spectacular views when you climb the viewing tower.

We went into Panama City (with a english speaking taxi driver - Roberto) we requested this. He gave us an amazing tour of Panama City - what a great place - the Old City was beautiful and my favourite spot. This tour only cost $120 (including a $30 tip) - cheaper than the 4 of us doing the bus tour through the hotel where you can't even get off the bus.

The rooms are very nice and comfortable and clean.

The food was good but not alot of choice - with kids, choices are always good. The omlette cook at breakfast was very slow - but the omlettes were amazing if you had the time to wait. We waiting around 20mins in line the first morning then gave up as we had to meet in the lobby for the tram tour.

The employees at the hotel are my biggest complaint - yes there was a issue with understanding english but they actually look at you like you are bothering them. I will exclude the reception staff from that comment (they were great). But the bar staff and wait staff were awful. You would order wine with dinner and you would never get it. We ordered ice from room service and they never came. I saw alot of people complaining at reception and I felt bad for those girls because they were doing everything they could do. There was a mini bar in the room that you had to pay for although it was all inclusive at the bar. The minibar prices were very high.

Our last day we spent by the pool and we visited the national zoo. The pool was nice and the zoo was great although we didn't have alot of time there (but it only cost $4 to get in).

To sum this up - This resort is nice although really lacks in customer service (that will be there downfall). I would not visit this resort again - the Decameron was alot more fun and comfortable.

Room Tip: Don't choose the villas - they are far from the main hotel and not very nice. The run of the ho...
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Patters4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gamboa_Resort, Case Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this review, 20 January 2012
We are pleased that you ended your week in Panama in the right place. We are also pleased that our unique aerial tram, once again, had given an unforgettable experience to our guests. And we want to thank you for your kind words about the reception staff and our clean and comfortable rooms. The issues that you pointed out will be taken care of. Customer service is a priority to us and we are always working to meet the demands of our guests and then take it one step further.
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Newmarket, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 January 2012

We spent 3 nights at this resort. We are well travelled 5 star resort people. Upon arrival we were impressed with the building's lobby and view. Check in was easy and the reception polite and english speaking. Then we go to our room, which smelled of mold. On further inspection the black out curtain was covered in mold, the air conditioner - moldy and the shower was also disgusting with black mold. Looking at the building from the pool area you could also see mold all over the building. The food was about 1 star quality and the service in the restaurant was non-existent. Once you were seated you had to flag down someone to get a glass of water and to get a glass of wine was much more difficult. The fella on the egg station had no idea how to flip and egg. My daughter and I are both gourmet foodies and were ready to leap over the counter and do it ourselves. There is a list on the bar of "allowable" drinks for Sunwing guests and it is very limited, anything not on the list is extra charge. Pool food is extra - and terrible. We had lunch at the nearby marina and it was no better. You could have put any code in the safe and it would have opened. Tours were okay and overpriced. We hired a VIP taxi service to take us shopping and to the MiraFlores locks, which was great as we determined time and places. It cost $105 for 4 of us for a 5 hour trip.
Much less than the excursion prices. The zip-line cost $258 for 2 people. The aerial tram trip was worth it. Go back to Panama? not on a bet.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank lovevacations735
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gamboa_Resort, Case Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this review, 20 January 2012
It is always good to hear our guest saying nice things about the installations. We worked hard to make them a natural extension of the rainforest experience. On certain occasions mold can grew very fast in this environment. It's not common, but there are exceptions. We are sorry about this early incident that unfortunately no one could have prevented. Thank you for your feedback.

Truly yours,

Raul Bonilla
Case Manager
Gamboa Rainforest Resort
casemanager@gamboaresort.com
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Gamboa Rainforest Resort

Property: Gamboa Rainforest Resort
Address: Goethals Blvd. | Soberania National Park, Gamboa 7338, Panama
Region: Panama > Colon Province > Gamboa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Gamboa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Gamboa Rainforest Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 166
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Deep in the heart of the Panamanian rainforest lies the completely unique Gamboa Rainforest Resort. This magnificent destination rests where the scenic Chagres River meets the Panama Canal and is the only resort property in the area. Few places on earth offer such an amazing natural experience while providing an unsurpassed level of luxury. Escape the noise and hectic pace of everyday life and surround yourself with the tranquility of the mystical Soberania National Forest. Here, just a short 30-minute ride from Panama City, on 340 acres overlooking the stunning Panama Canal, you can commune with nature in a pristine environment where explorers and pirates once tread. Our Panama Tours offer an exhilarating variety of jungle adventures such as an aerial tram, guided boat tours, fishing expeditions, and much more. Our tours are designed to show you wildlife in its natural setting amidst the colorful splendor of the jungle flora. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gamboa Rainforest Hotel Gamboa
Gamboa Rain Forest Resort

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