We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Improving Service in a Beautiful Place”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 10 more sites!
The Westin Playa Bonita Panama
Ranked #8 of 113 Hotels in Panama City
Certificate of Excellence
Playa Coronado, Panama
Level Contributor
132 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“Improving Service in a Beautiful Place”
Reviewed 5 July 2013

Our recent stay at this lovely property met our expectations and then some. A standout for us was the service received from everyone! The staff were friendly, attempted English (although I preferred to practice my Spanish which they tolerated with gentle assistance), and were generally efficient. Are they at that 5 star level - no not yet but I do believe progress is being made all round - based on prior reviews. For some reason consistency in behaviours is not a strength of Panamanian nature. (i.e. regular coffee service one morning - same server next day not the case?) I have witnessed this in many areas of Panama - and speaking with employers it is a frustration that is addressed with patience and perseverance.
We enjoyed the quiet weekdays and felt like we had a chunk of the place to ourselves. The food was ok - I am not a fan of buffets in most cases as the food is never hot/fresh and this was not an exception for the few meals we had there. Choices were basically fine - a pasta station may be a hit for people. The two dinners we had at 'Tierra y Fuego' were excellent. Starfish for lunch a few days was okay. The menu is limited and could improve with a few more salad choices and maybe a fish serving. We did not have the all inclusive feature. The wine pour was very inconsistent varying from maybe 3 oz upwards to 8 oz for a $6 charge. I sent one glass back indicating would like 'mas' (more) which was topped up no problem.
The spa was first rate - the services we had were the best ever- and that speaks very highly as we frequent the spa most everywhere we travel. We will do day trips from home in the future to enjoy this spa again.
A special recognition of their front desk staff - Miriam and Guest Relations manager - Maria. We had an un-solveable issue with our room - as it was too late for us to move to another. I wanted to ensure the staff were aware of this and to be more aware when placing guests in this particular room in the future. They were most receptive and grateful for becoming aware of the issue. Maria comped our last evening dinner which was very kind. She even went so far as to phone me at home the next day to ensure our dinner was enjoyable. Thank you.
We went with intention of a enjoying a few days of 'getaway' which was a success! We look forward to the next time.

Room Tip: Room 1840 is situated below a club level lounge area - it can be extremely noisy (thus ranking of po...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank livethedream_8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maria Gabriela U, Guest Relations Manager at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama, responded to this review, 13 July 2013
We really appreciated your value comments regarding your recent stay at the Westin Playa Bonita Panama.

Your comments are always well heard in order to strive every day to give the best of us and provide a service of excellence.

Hope offers us the opportunity to host you again during future visits to Panama City.

Sincerely,
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

2,778 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    1,560
    752
    283
    118
    65
See reviews for
809
759
62
542
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (659)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 July 2013

Checked in on Saturday, June 22nd (we are currently still here a few more days). Upon arriving at airport we grabbed VIP taxi service to the hotel which was rather expensive because the hotel is removed from the city. Also, the driver drove erratically (I feared for my kids' safety). The road is windy and the drivers in Panama drive like they have a death wish! Once at the Westin, we were quickly greeted by a bellman named Michael. He transported our bags and escorted us to our room. As we navigated the lobby, we were amazed at the loud (yet enjoyable) dance music. The guests were exquisitely dressed in ballgowns. My teenaged daughters were mesmerized by the atmosphere. Michael explained that there was a large wedding party. After surveying our gorgeous room and view from our balcony, we ventured throughout the resort. It was dark, so the lights lit up the pools; everything was picture perfect. We encountered several toads on our stroll through the property. We visited the gift store and noticed there were no snacks for purchase. Back in the lobby we mentioned to Michael that we needed to pick-up some snacks for our room (given we would be at the Westin for 2 weeks). On day two, we returned to our room and Michael had left a 2 liter bottle of Coke for our daughter, and he wouldn't accept our money for it. Additionally, we arrived back from an excursion and my husband's gout had flared up, he was out of anti-inflammatory medicine. Michael sent a car to a pharmacy and picked up pills to help. Michael's willingness to do whatever was necessary to make our stay enjoyable was a welcomed surprise. He is deserving of recognition for exceptional service. After scoping out the restaurant choices and other amenities we retired for the night. The beds are comfortable and the rooms are spacious. We did not experience any of the problems that other reviewers mentioned. Housekeeping has been terrific and the facilities have been great. Our room has been made up each time we head out to the pool or on an excursion. The pools are fantastic and clean. I woke up every morning at 5 or 6am and looked out from the balcony. Routinely I saw the same guys out, cleaning the pools. One young man removed all debris and added the cleaning chemicals. The security team was ever present; always surveying the beaches and pool area. At first, I was nervous because security was abundant which made me think something bad was going on, but after a day or so, I appreciated seeing them. Some of the front desk staff was helpful, particularly the two young men in the evening (they spoke terrific English). My daughters lovedd their nightly stroll to the ice cream shop, not sure how they will survive once we are state side again. The restaurants and food throughout most of the hotel was truly as bad as people have stated. The buffets are horrendous and cost way too much for the lack of quality. Do not eat in the Asian restaurant if you like good Asian food. The sushi had imitation crab! It was disappointing at best. Amazingly, getting authentic Panamainan food is impossible here at the hotel. Poolside food was not great and scarcely available. Your best choices for dining are elsewhere which presents a problem because taxis are expensive. The all-inclusive guests were typically in abundance on the weekends only. Apparently, the locals get a special deal so hundreds come and take over the hotel. The wristbands were confusing to staff and guests. Most Americans did not have all-inclusive and didn't get how it worked. The remainder of the week, we had the hotel to ourselves (only 75 people). Some of the best food we had was at the Albrook Mall (we also bought snacks and beverages there for in the room). We did discover that room service was our best food option in the hotel, but the menu items were limited. Booking excursions through the Gamboa Tour Company allowed us to leave the resort for much needed escapes. The Rainforest Tour was worth the money. We also enjoyed the City Tour, but we had to re-schedule because our guide was an hour late and arrived with a van full of people. Jose, the Gamboa salesperson was not the most reliable nor trustworthy person. You should book in advance of arriving in Panama. When I first went to book the girl in the office said to come at 8am the following day to book. Got there at 8am and he didn't arrive until after 10am. He also ensured that he would be there the next morning to see us off on our first tour, but he was nowhere to be found. We were told by Jose that it would be an 8:30am pick-up, so we were surprised when our guide called us from the lobby saying he was waiting for us since 7:45am. We scurried down as quickly as possible swallowing our breakfast without tasting it. The tour was worth it and Roberto, our guide was outstanding. The second tour, was great too because our guide, Robert (aka George) was thorough and went above and beyond. Gamboa does a good job, but Jose is a bit of a used car salesman. The Westin is a nice property and we will stay again, but there are things we would do differently and there are a few things we hope they consider changing. We would definitely rent a car so that we could dine offsite & we would pre-book excursions. The Westin should consider providing all day coffee/tea service in the lobby, teaching staff more English, adding to the room service menu choices, putting snack items in the gift store, providing complimentary shuttle service to and from the airport, better restaurant service and food, and overall customer service training. All the staff could take a lesson from Michael. When we return to Panama we will stay at Wstin primarily because he took the time to make sure we were comfortable and satisfied, every time we saw him. Most staff here in Panama, particularly at the Westin have a nonchalant attitude and there is never a sense of urgency. Oftentimes, you would see 5-6 employees standing around chatting about nothing. By most companies' standards the idleness would be intolerable and warrant discipline, up to termination. My mom is Panamainan and left the country for the U.S. years ago, but I wanted to bring family to experience Panama together. I am disappointed in the fact that most here at the Westin have demonstrated themselves as lazy and not concerned with service. The staff treat guests like an inconvenience. I hope when we return the Westin will provide a different experience; one that would make me proud to call myself Panamainan.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank damitapeyton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maria Gabriela U, Guest Relations Manager at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama, responded to this review, 8 July 2013
Thank you for taking the time to share your recent experience with us at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama.

Our goal is to provide consistent high quality service. We greatly appreciate you taking the time to bring this matter to our attention. That action was taken in order to avoid future situations.

Once again, thank you for your comments and please give us the opportunity to hosted in your next visit to Panama City.

Best regards,
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Level Contributor
179 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 106 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 June 2013

I stayed here on my first night in Panama and it was lovely. Getting a cab from the airport to this property was relatively easy. They charged $48 for the cab ride, which I found reasonable since it was outside of Panama City. On the ride, I got a nice tour of the city and my first view of the Panama Canal.

I checked in at noon and they already had a room available for me. This was nice because I was able to head directly upstairs, unpack, and put on my swimsuit. I headed downstairs and ate lunch at the outdoor restaurant -- Oceanica. They had a lunch buffet which was absolutely delicious. Next I took a walk on the rocky beach and then went up to the pool for the afternoon. The beach was not that attractive, but the pools were great. There were tons of lounge chairs and attentive servers coming to bring you drinks all afternoon. They started playing good music at around 3:00 and had some dancers come out at around 4:00.

Rooms were amazing. I got an ocean view room which a great little balcony. Room amenities include bug spray wipes, toothbrush/toothpaste, razor with shaving cream, and the typical Westin bath items (nice soaps, shampoos,etc). My closet had an extra plastic laundry bag, so I took it to store my dirty clothes in. At night, when you sit out on the balcony, you can hear the waves of the Pacific crashing on the shore while you watch the lights from the line of ships waiting to get into the Panama Canal.

The breakfast buffet was included in my rate. I found the buffet good and very filling, although it wasn't as delicious as the lunch buffet.

There is a tour agency located inside the lobby, so it's easy to arrange trips to other locations for the day. I didn't take advantage of this, but I did look through their tour book and was impressed by the offerings.

My only complaint was that there appeared to be some type of "all inclusive" option at this hotel and I wasn't told about that option when I checked in. A la carte drinks and snacks were pretty expensive at the pool, and I didn't see a pricelist anywhere, so I racked up quite a tab on things that weren't even that good. I probably would have enjoyed my trip even more if I had purchased an "all inclusive" wristband so I wouldn't have had to think about how costly all the food and drinks were at the pool.

At checkout, the concierge is able to arrange taxi service to your next destination. I decided to head to the Gamboa Rainforest Resort for the next night, and they found me a very nice cab very quickly the ride was $45. Overall, I thought this was a great hotel. I would definitely consider going back, but I would investigate the all-inclusive option next time.

Room Tip: The rooms facing the water are worth the extra money. If you have an SPG membership, book through t...
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank trailblazer119
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maria Gabriela U, Guest Relations Manager at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama, responded to this review, 8 July 2013
Thank you for writing a review regarding your experience with the Westin Playa Bonita Panama. We greatly appreciate you taking the time to bring this matter to our attention and apologize for any inconvenience may have caused you during your stay.

Our goal to consistently provide superior service and your comments are very important to us. The feedback we receive from our valued guests, like you, enables us to target problem areas and take the necessary actions to ensure similar situations can be avoided in the future. We appreciate the candid feedback we receive and welcome any opportunity to improve.

Please give us the opportunity to service in a near future and welcome back to Panama City.

Sincerely,
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mexico City, Mexico
Level Contributor
62 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 June 2013

This is quite a new hotel, 20 minutes away from Panama City. Since the hotel is new, it looks great and has everything you may expect from a hotel on its category. The pool area is beautiful. Rooms are very nice, equipped and clean and the staff is really friendly and efficient. I had a problem with the shower on my room and in less than 20 minutes after I reported it, a guy came, checked what the problem was, and changed the damaged parts. From rooms with ocean view you can see the ships that are in line to enter the Canal. This is a great choice for a business or a pleasure trip.

Room Tip: Get a room above the 10th floor with ocean view.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Rafa P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maria Gabriela U, Guest Relations Manager at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama, responded to this review, 8 July 2013
We really appreciated your value comments regarding your recent stay at the Westin Playa Bonita Panama.

Your comments are always well heard in order to strive every day to give the best of us and provide a service of excellence.

Hope offers us the opportunity to host you again during future visits to Panama City.

Sincerely,
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 June 2013

This location pleases many. Not only is it tropical, it also has an educational aspect with the Panama Canal and the soon to open BioMuseo.

Watch the boats lining up to pass through the canal out your window and then scurry down to the Clarins Sensory Spa and stay all day due to the amazing facilties and the low prices.

Room Tip: You can get a Renewal Suite for the price of a US hotel room. They are amazing and have luxurious b...
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank SpaTravelGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maria Gabriela U, Guest Relations Manager at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama, responded to this review, 8 July 2013
Thank you very much for your wonderful comments regarding your recent stay at the Westin Playa Bonita Panama.

We always happy to assist you everything that you and your family decide visit Panama City again.

Sincerely,
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canada
Level Contributor
59 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 June 2013

This is a great place to relax and unwind in. The rooms were large and clean with great ocean views. Food was awesome. Pools great, plenty of lounge chairs. The fitness centre is well equipped and the spa has some excellent services. All staff were extremely helpful.
The beach can be walked on but I wouldn't want to swim in the sea. Only drawback I would say is the distance from Panama City.I would go back

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Gallusb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maria Gabriela U, Guest Relations Manager at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama, responded to this review, 5 July 2013
It is wonderful to hear that you had an excellent experience with us at the Westin Playa Bonita Hotel. It is fantastic to see that you found your room to be comfortable and that you enjoyed our pools.

We hope to see you again in your next visit to Panama City.

Sincerely,
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nashville, Tennessee
Level Contributor
1,195 reviews
85 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 778 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 June 2013

As a platinum member we were treated to a very nice suite. It was a special anniversary and we were treated to a bottle of wine as well. We ate dinner at Tierra y Fuego, they took very good care of us and the food was fantastic. The breakfast buffet was only average. There were far too many gnats in the fruit and on the pastries, it was rather nasty, they attempted to keep them off by keeping food wrapped in plastic wrap, but they are little and find their way in. The selection was OK. However quality was not the best. We had the breakfast included in our rate, I would not have paid extra for it. The platinum lounge has a very nice view, great service and a nice selection of alcohol. The appetizer's were a little hit or miss. It seemed like when they were expecting a bigger crowd, the appetizers were better. Part of our stay it was very slow and on those days the appetizers were not as strong, but still good. The lounge is open during the afternoon and they provide chips/salsa/guacamole. It would be nice to have coffee/tea and maybe cookies. We had a higher room with view of the water. Mosquitoes make their way all the way up,even to the higher rooms so make sure you spray yourself if on your balcony. The water pressure was horrible unless you like a cold show, it took far too long for hot water in the shower and only drizzles out. The bath tub and sink do have hot water quicker. There is a fire alarm (?) above the bed that blinks all night long....right above the bed...not the best location for it. I would like to address the other reviews regarding service. Yes, many of the employees are not strong with the English language but we are in Panama. I understand that folks want to be comfortable and for some that means that everyone speaks their language...if you TRY the staff more than tries back. Some think that they are here to be served, and yes, you are however I would recommend smiling and attempting a few words of Spanish. If you really want only English, there is always someone in each room that does know English so just ask. The Panamanians are very nice. I think some are a bit shy and nervous to try their English as we witnessed some folks being rather mean when they did not understand them. The Westin could probably benefit from teaching their staff a few more phrases in English, but in no way did this interrupt our care. The service is hit or miss as some have already written. For example they strive hard to keep the dinning room very clean but at the expense of service to the customer at times; for instance, you can wait until your breakfast is over some mornings to be served coffee. Some mornings we just got up and went over to the coffee to go section and helped ourselves by filling our mugs. This in no way bothered me but I can see how it would bother others. Our rooms was a water side view. Friends we made had a "bus grave yard" view...the good news is that they seem to be cleaning up the "Bus grave yard" by demolishing and removing the old buses so maybe soon there will no longer be a issue regarding this view. We rented a car and that was perfect for us. The Westin does offer numerous tours so renting a car is not necessary if you do not want to. If you do, make sure you have a GPS. We brought ours from home after downloading the Panama maps. It is very important to still have an idea and map of where you are going as the GPS was a tool here, sometimes it wanted you to go down one way streets so you really have to pay attention. As others have already expressed, the beach is not necessarily what you might expect from a Westin on the water.
We drove down the coast and did not find that the beaches improved much on this side of Panama. The pools are beautiful and spacious. It is very important that you spray yourself due to the amount of insects.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ann C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maria Gabriela U, Guest Relations Manager at The Westin Playa Bonita Panama, responded to this review, 5 July 2013
Thank you very much for let us know your comments regarding your recent stay at the Westin Playa Bonita Panama.

We are really appreciated the time that you taking and please be sure your comments going to be sharing with the managers to find a quick answer.

Welcome back to Panama City soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Panama City hotels
4.7 mi away
Hard Rock Hotel Panama Megapolis
4.7 mi away
Hotel Riu Plaza Panama
Hotel Riu Plaza Panama
#17 of 113 in Panama City
2,606 reviews
4.9 mi away
Grace Panama
Grace Panama
#1 of 113 in Panama City
628 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
4.6 mi away
Panama Marriott Hotel
Panama Marriott Hotel
#16 of 113 in Panama City
1,105 reviews
8.4 mi away
The Westin Panama
The Westin Panama
#2 of 113 in Panama City
593 reviews
5.2 mi away
Trump International Hotel & Tower Panama
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to The Westin Playa Bonita Panama? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about The Westin Playa Bonita Panama

Property: The Westin Playa Bonita Panama
Address: Road to Veracruz Km 6, Panama City, Panama
Phone Number:
Region: Panama > Panama Province > Panama City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Panama City
#8 Luxury Hotel in Panama City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — The Westin Playa Bonita Panama 5*
Number of rooms: 611
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The personification of the destination: Where natural serenity meets industrial glamour - Westin Playa Bonita Panama is strategically located alongside the Pacific Ocean, on a mile long stretch of golden sand on Playa Bonita Beach, surrounded by lush tropical rainforests, and a quick 20-minute drive from the metropolitan capital of Panama City. Nestled alongside the stunning Pacific Ocean, The Westin Playa Bonita is near celebrated sites like the Panama Canal's Miraflores Locks and just a 20-minute drive from Panama City, the exhilarating capital of the Republic of Panama ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, Prestigia, TravelUp, Ebookers, Priceline, TripOnline SA, Traveltool, S.L.U., Evoline ltd, HotelQuickly, getaroom.com and Cancelon so you can book your The Westin Playa Bonita Panama reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
The Westin Playa Bonita Panama Hotel Panama City
The Westin Playa Bonita Panama Panama City

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing