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“Serious plumbing and managerial problems!!!”

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Palma Real Beach Resort & Villas
Ranked #8 of 22 Hotels in La Ceiba
Ottawa area
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Serious plumbing and managerial problems!!!”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 February 2008

Traveled to The Palma Real Hotel, Honduras on February 18 - 25 th 2008. My sister, friend and I stayed in the Caribe section. Everyone here is totally segregated from the rest of the hotel. You are 1/4 mile from the main section which you have to walk. (There is a tractor and wagon, but, you never see it.)
The rooms are clean, but, certainly not four star. Our shower was a trickle of water. When we asked for an upgrade the desk said there wasn't any rooms available. I woke up our first morning to use the facilities at 4:00 a.m. The toilet would not flush and there was no running water to wash my hands. I was told by the front desk that everynight, between 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. the water is shut off to the rooms to fill the pools!!
During the DAY on day three we stopped getting water completely. After several calls to the desk the water would come on and then shut off again. On day five I resorted to taking my shampoo and bodywash and bathing in the quest pool!! Other quests did the same after they saw me. (There were several of us without water.) After contacting our Conquest agent a man from the desk came to our room with two keys for rooms in the Caribe section for us to look at. The first room didn't have water either. The section room reeked of mold. There was mildew on the walls and door frames and the safe door was ripped off!! Finally, they gave us a room in the main section. It had water pressure, the door was ripped off the safe, but we took it anyway. We later found out that it had water pressure, but, in order to get water pressure the water was too hot. (Another complaint of the guests there.) The toilet never worked either, but, we just put up with it until we left. Employees came in to "fix" it twice.
The towel bar broke in our bathroom while we were in the Caribe section. Rather than having it repaired the chambermaids just quit giving us towels!!!
I waited in line-ups at the snack bar watching employees load their plates up with chicken wings and fries etc. while very little was left for the guests. Always line-ups. Only one bar in each section.
The buffet reminded me of a high school cafetaria. The food was NOT four star.
Early every evening a young employee would drive around the resort on a scooter spraying a cloud of insecticide amongst the quests. I had one quest tell me whenver you hear the scooter to run for cover. We have no idea what kind of chemicals we ingested. UNBELIEVABLE!!!
I have traveled extensively in third world countries and have never complained. This was a horrible vacation in a resort I would grade a very generous 2 star resort!!

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — No Water
  • Stayed February 2008, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank rockin_couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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511 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (44)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Toronto
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 February 2008

What an awesome trip! Me and one of my girlfriends (23 & 25 y/o) booked this trip just a few days before leaving (Feb 18th, 2008) We planned to do a last min deal down south and the Palm Real was the only resort available.

After reading all the horrific reviews we were really scared about the trip. Being seasoned vacationers, we took all the necessary vaccinations and booster shots (Hep A/B, Malaria, Dukeral) to get prepared.

After a long flight in a stuffy airplane (in the tightest row) we arrived at the La Ceiba airport. It was gorgeous. Surrounded by mountains and lush greenary.. you can't ask for a better welcome!

We got to the hotel and were greeted by the 'animation staff' along with a welcome cocktail. We had already been given keys/remote and completed the check in process on the bus so it was straight to our room. We were in room 229 right by the lobby. There were quite a few people who complained about lack of hot/cold water or water in general but we onl had a few minor issues... really hot water one day and really cold the next, but great flow and temp for the other 5 days.

The food.... it was delicious! Although there were 2 das of upset stomach but nothing a little imodium didn't fix. There were a lot of choices and always something to satisfy any palate. The chicken parm was really great at the italian a la carte!

Excursions... they are a must!! We did the tour of Cayos Cochinos and the Canopy tour. Cayos Cochino's was absolutely gorgeous and a must see for sure!! If you have a little adventure in you, the Canopy tour is awesome... horse back ride up a mountain, zip down 18 lines in the rainforest then calm yourself in a relaxing hot spring!!! I wish we had been there for 2 weeks to be able to do more like the rafting, visiting the national park and kayaking.

The grounds, hotel, pool and beach are kept imacculately clean. The hotel is sprayed for insects 2 times a day but remember to bring some muskol. Even with the muskol we got a bunch of bites at night.

Contrary to most reviews, the 'animation staff' is great!!! They do absolutely everything possible to make your stay enjoyable. There is tons to do through the day and a show every night!!!

Im not sure what else to say, but this trip was amazing and I'd recommend Honduras to anyone! This is not a resort/vaction for those you frequent hilton type resorts. Remember, you are in an under-developed, 3rd world country. You can't expect too much.

Things to remember:
-Sunscreen (even for people you don't burn.. you will burn!)
-Bug Spray
-Gifts for locals and staff (anything from toys, make up, clothes to tooth paste, brushes etc). Its much appreciated considered most of these items are considered luxuries!
-A camera with lots of memory!!!

Overall our experience was great in all areas; the setting, staff, rooms, food and actvites were amazing.

  • Liked — Views
  • Disliked — Room
  • Stayed February 2008, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
10 Thank HeraOToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ontario
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 February 2008

Date - Feb 11-18, 2008
The trip started out a little slow with a 6 hr delay in TO due to a parking brake malfunction.
However, when we arrived at the airport in Honduras, the beauty of the country was displayed. It only got better from there. After a short shuttle from the airport. Check in was a breeze as they give you the keys at the airport. The rooms were clean and we had a safe and the air-conditioning worked well. We stayed for a week and the weather was amazing. Only cloudy one morning until about 11 AM. The staff at the resort was extremely friendly. My advice is to learn a little Spanish before you go. Not all employees speak English. However, remember you are going to there country! The pools were amazing and the beach was a little cloudy due to small waves, but still great for swimming. If you are the type that needs everything to be perfect, this resort is not for you. However, if you are the adventuress type then this place to be. The tours are great!!! We went on the Cayos Chacinas - snorkelling, the Pico Bonita mountain tour and the Canopy zip lines. All of which were amazing! Some folks that did the white water rafting tour also said that it was amazing (wish we had done it as well). The food was good at the buffet each meal. They had something that everyone would like. Again, as stated in other reviews this resort is listed as a 4 star but that is a stretch. Make sure that you bring some Imodium as one out of every group had the runs. I do not think this is the resorts fault, rather just a change in food from North American. Not sick enough to stop me from exploring and doing the tours. They are all very reasonably priced as well. The canopy tour that included a horse back ride up the mountain, 18 zip lines through the jungle and a time to swim in a naturally beautiful hot springs for only $45 US. Make sure you bring US money as they do not accept CDN. The Pico Bonito tour was $50 which included a guide up the mountain and a very nice lunch when you get back to the bottom. This we did on our own instead of going through the tour packages. If you talk to some of the staff members that have a number for a taxi driver who speaks English and will either wait for you or pick you up later when you need it. The resort had only Canadians staying the week we went and everyone was friendly. This is the type if resort that the more you are willing to participate in, the more fun you will have. The animation staff are very nice and try to involve as many people as possible. The shows were excellent and the dancers are awesome. Make sure you go to some of the nightly shows.
I tried to arrange a fishing trip, when the boat came to pick us up, they only had two rods and the rest were hand lines. If I may suggest, if you want to go fishing when you are at this resort (this is not a package offered) purchase some cheap rods and leave them for the people when you come back!
I was a little sad as we didn't have too much opportunity to purchase some souvenirs from Honduras.
Overall this was the best week/trip that my wife and I have ever done. The hotel is beautiful. The people are extremely friendly and at no time did we feel unsafe at all. I would love to go back to this resort and would probably stay for two weeks next time so we can still do all the excursions and enjoy the full amenities of the resort. I would also feel very confident bringing our two kids next time. But remember, you will have a great time if you participate in the events at the hotel and the tours are incredible. We had a few small challenges with hot/cold water, nothing to big and the power cut out for a few short minutes again to be expected in a third world country. It didn't stop us from having the time of our lives.
Wish I was still there!!!

  • Liked — The staff and the pools!
  • Disliked — The few challenges we had with the water, or getting a little sick.
  • Stayed February 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
10 Thank lovethesun031
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
london
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 February 2008

We just returned from La Ceiba, Honduras and stayed at the Palma Real Resort. We had an amazing time, it is a beautiful country with a lot to do and see. The weather was nice every day, every morning the sky was blue and by the afternoon the clouds started to appear but the next morning the blue sky was back, it was like day every day.

We went on the canopy tour and it is a trip that you cannot miss but we have to warn you it is a scary experience but the guides speak very little English so make sure to make them repeat if you did not understand the instructions. There is also many other day trips that you can do for around $50 each.

Everything was really good but our only regret was not to have booked the Superior Room. We travelled with our 4 1/2 months old son and had booked a Standard Room which was a big mistake. The standard rooms are in an other section of the resort and were supposed to have a bath which they don't and it was a good 5 minutes walk from everything with not much open around it, other than a snack bar open from 10 to 5 with only wings, fries and a few other things and a bar. So basicly when you want to have breakfast or go to the buffet you need to walk to the other side of the resort and if you forgot something in your room you have to go back. So for the little difference in price book the Superior room, if you decided to upgrate they will charge you $120 which is more than at the time of booking. If you are travelling with TMR leaving from Montréal and you book a standard room you automaticly get a Superior room, which I don't find fare to the people booking the same type of room with Conquest. One other thing lock you door, the hotel sometimes rent rooms to locals and in 3 occasions the same person walked in our room and security did not do much about it.

But overall, it is a very safe place to travel to with kids, amazing sceneries, the food is good, people are friendly but the staff don't speak much French or English, bring change because they are never able to exchange money or get you small change. Also there is not much happening at night so it is not a place to go if you are planning on partying and the animation is not the greatest.

After all of this being said we would go back in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed February 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank mcbLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 February 2008

Recently we returned from Honduras. Tell You truth it is exotic place, never seen anything like this country before. That was our first time in Central America. Before we were in Cuba, Dominican Rep., Jamaica and Mexico. This country is even poorer than others. You can see very rich mansions and some people live in the tents.
Conquest was the company who brought us there by Sky service airlines. we departure early morning, and by the time we came to hotel, we were exhausted and spent our first day for nothing, thanks god we had two weeks ahead.
Hotel is not bad at all, but it is not 4*. Resort is consists of two part, located half kilometer apart. So if you live in the Caribbean rooms you need to walk some distance every day to the buffet and entertainment, which is good for your health.
The sea was not quiet all the time and beach has dark sand, what makes it looks dirty. For me it was the worst part. Hotel was maintained well, very clean pools and beautiful landscapes. Bar is ONLY one and it is terrible, even I don't drink at all, still need some juice or soft drink. There are lots of people around and you need to wait. Yes there is another bar at the Caribbean part, but long way to go there.
Food!, not too much choice of it, but taste good. Some people complained of sick stomach, but our family was o.k. we don't eat pealed or cut fruits, only oranges bananas, etc.
Rooms are clean and we had hot water all the time, no troubles with flashing toilets. Air conditioner worked well.
There were many good trips offered by conquest and local tour companies. we went on horse riding and zip sliding trips, went to the city, actually small town with big mall and all KCF, Wendy, Baskin Robbins, etc. with the prices like in Canada, surprised me.
Staff in the hotel is perfect, very friendly and never annoyed or unpleasant to us. The best friend of us was Rigo, all barmen and waitress were friendly.
I was really scared before the vacation, because we have the 6 month old daughter with us, but overall vacation were good enough.

  • Liked — view from the room, easy access
  • Disliked — can't control the tempreture in the room(airconditioner), especially at night
  • Stayed January 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
6 Thank ViktoriyaToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montreal
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 February 2008

We will be back to the area for sure. Now the food is not great at the hotel, but you know I was also more interested in eating local fare than having food just like there is at home. The beans were fine and tortillas. We exercised the same caution that we would in Mexico. I may also have different expectations. This was my first all inclusive place and I am typically more drawn to backpacking trips than anything else. I was travelling with two young kids - so that is why we went for the ease and the security of the all-inclusive

This is a country which is new to tourism so certainly they are not polished, but the setting is so incredible and the surrounding area amazing.

Also the amazing thing travelling with two young ones was that we got a two bedroom villa - with washer and dryer - at NO extra charge. Being just in a hotel room would have driven me crazy - this was perfect. Be sure to inquire about it because it was a huge perk.

Weather was ideal, location great. I do agree if the hotel wants to take it to the next level...they should work on the food. But really - I feel like this is going to be my spot.

Stayed February 2008
Helpful?
8 Thank mtlernie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ancaster, On
Level Contributor
96 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 February 2008

Went to the Palma Real from Jan 28 - Feb 4 and and an excellent time. Here is a breakdown:

Resort

The resort itself is beautiful. The grounds and pools are well kept and we observed the maintenance crew constantly maintaining and upgarding the grounds. The resort was well laid out and had many amenities and things to do.

There were lots of things to do around the resort: kayaks, boogie boards, a trampoline, and mini golf. We never seemed to have to wait to use any of the equipment. There were also more than enough beach chairs around the pool and on the beach - never had to wait or search for a chair.

Had a couple of mosquito bites in the evening during the weekut nothing major.

Staff

The staff were extremely friendly and willing to help. There was entertainment going on all day such as volleyball, dance lessons etc- the resort provided a schedule at the beginning of the stay.

Met some awesome staff at the resort and found them to be very helpful and friendly. If you see Fabio, make sure to tell him you saw him on the internet - he gets a kick out of it.

The shows were alright - somewhat entertaining - not really our thing.

Rooms

The rooms were quite large and clean and everything in the room worked great including the hot water and water pressure. We had a standard room and had 3 beds in our rooms over in the Caribe section. We heard some people complaining about the distance of this section to the main part of the resort, but found this section very nice as it was very quiet and had a snack bar, pool and all the a la carte restaurants. It took less than 5 minutes to walk along the beach to the main section and it was a beautiful walk. There is also a tractor that is used as a regular shuttle for people who do not like to do the walk.

Beach

The beach was nice and clean. It is not the fine white sand you would find in Cuba, but was still nice with warm water. The water is cloudy near the shore due to the waves - so not for snorkeling, but fun for swimming, kayaks and boogey boards.

Food

We found that the buffet restaurant had a large selection of food for all the meals. The food was decent and nobody from our group had any issues. The food does get a bit repetative by the end of the week, but this is to be expected at any resort buffet.

There is also an Asian and an Italian a la carte - we found the food at these restaurants to be quite good and it was easy to book - no line ups. You just need to book before 2:00 pm of the day you wish to go. You were allowed 3 visits during the week.

The drinks at the bars were also very good with usually no waiting for drinks. It is a good idea to bring a LARGE insulted drink container to minimize the trips to the bar.

Excursions:

All the excursions we went on were excellent and a great value. We booked all the excursions through Turasur through the resort and all the prices were reasonable when compared to other tour agencies especially given all the tours leave from the resort - we did our research.

The canopy/zip-lines were amazing. It involves a 45 minute ride up a mountain on horseback and riding the 17 lines down the mountain from platform to platform. One of the lines was over a km long! At the end they drive you part way up the mountain to enjoy the natural hot springs that flow down the mountain making up several different pools. It was truly paradise.

We also went white water rafting and this trip was a blast. Consisted of up to and including class 4 rapids. We had an excellent guide and really enjoyed the trip.

We also took the Cayos Cochinos trip and also enjoyed this trip. The islands were beautiful and the snorkeling was decent.

The final excursion we took was the city tour. This trip was also good as the guide was very informative and showed us some of the main sites of the city and allowed you to do some shopping at the mall. We also took a cab into the city and did some exploring on our own. We found the city to be safe, but it is a city and you need to take the same precautions you would in any city.

Honduras itself:

The is an absolutely beautiful country and is just starting to develop into a tourist destination. Most of the beachfront is undeveloped - went for a walk along the beach to the East from the resort and saw almost no development.

We also found the people to be very friendly and warm. We found the locals were always ready to help and enjoyed trying to communicate with us despite the language barrier.

We went for a walk along the beach to Sambo Creek - a beautiful walk - takes about 45 min - 1 hr. spent some time exploring the village and in the process had dropped our camera without realizing it. We were on our way back to the resort and had 2 kids chase us down to return our camera. We were extremely please and gave the kids some money as a reward. This was just one example of the great experience we had with the people.

Overall this was an excellent holiday and we would highly recommend Hinduras and this resort. The staff was very friendly and we met many other awesome people from Canada and the US. There were a select number of people that were constantly complaing about some of the most petty things at the resort (i.e. too many beds in the room, people who spoke Spanish, staff eating from the buffet etc). Seemed they were determined to try and be miserable. To these people I suggest they stay at home and stay in a 5 star resort.

  • Liked — Facilities, no line ups, location, amenities and excursions.
  • Disliked — No complaints
  • Stayed February 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
20 Thank jamielidd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Palma Real Beach Resort & Villas

Property: Palma Real Beach Resort & Villas
Address: Km. 20 Carretera La Ceiba-Trujillo, La Ceiba 9999, Honduras (Formerly Barcelo Palma Real Resort)
Region: Honduras > Atlantida Department > La Ceiba
Amenities:
Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 22 Hotels in La Ceiba
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Palma Real Beach Resort & Villas 3*
Number of rooms: 160
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Palma Real Beach Resort And Villas
Palma Real Beach Resort & Villas Hotel La Ceiba
Palma Real Beach Hotel
Palma Real Honduras
Palma Real Beach La Ceiba
Palma Real Hotel Honduras
Palma Real La Ceiba

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