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“The reviews were right” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Saba Hotel

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The Saba Hotel
Ranked #57 of 116 Hotels in Panama City
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“The reviews were right”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 February 2014 via mobile

No hot water. Day one the water in the shower was mildly warm, I tolerated it because I had just spent the day in a very hot place. Day two the water in the shower is cold. No choice but to shower and grit my teeth. Asked the desk to have it repaired. Right away was the response. Day three water in the shower is cold. Talked to the desk. No repairs on the weekend. Should have hot water on Monday. I checked out along with two buddies who also experienced no hot water in their rooms. I should have paid attention to the many reviews that said "no hot water".

Stayed February 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank Peachfuzzed
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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134 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    49
    55
    18
    8
    4
See reviews for
22
45
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
95 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 February 2014

The Saba is a four-story hotel of some 50 rooms in a commercial area with several restaurants and shops. A small park sits across the street. The hotel has clean, modern rooms, a restaurant on the ground floor with Asian & other food, and a hot breakfast for guests.

Seasoned travelers to Panama would probably be best suited to stay in this over-rated hotel. Facilities are basic, with no exercise facilities, and service could be enhanced. Though the staff seem genuinely want to help guests, they seem not familiar with basic visitor questions (perhaps because of limited English?) or not equipped to do so (for example, they apparently have no way to print boarding passes).

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank EugeC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 February 2014

I travel a lot and in every location I am always looking for that "one" little hotel that is perfect more me and half the price of the big named brands. I am still looking for it in Panama, but the Saba is close to it if they could just fix their hot water problem.

The hotel and rooms are nice, breakfast is good, and the location is perfect. Here's the problem: I checked in last saturday afternoon and there was no hot water in my room. I went to the desk and complained and they said they would figure it out. So I took a room temperature shower and went out for the evening.

Sunday morning I wake up.. not hot water.

I go to the desk again. Guy on duty sends a woman up who comes back up and says there is hot water. I go upstairs and there is no hot water. So I ask the guy on duty to see for himself and he agrees that there is no hot water.

So they change my room to across the hall and I take a nice hot shower. Sunday afternoon I go to take another shower and there is no hot water. However, I had turned it on and then take a skype call so it had been running for 20 minutes so I thought maybe they had a small hot water tank so I didn't press the issue.

Monday morning.. no hot water, same with tuesday morning. Then I left.

Clearly there is a hot water issue. When I used to travel in the Balkans where energy prices are high people there weren't as used to hot water as American are and it would often just be lukewarm to save money. Also, some hotels would just turn the hot water on from like 5am until noon.

I have a feeling that perhaps the Saba is just not turning the hot water up. It is on.. it worked once, and even when it wasn't warm it was slightly warmer than the cold water, but damnned if I can figure it out.

Anyway, if the hot water worked reliably I would rate the Saba 5 stars and stay there a lot (I go to Panama every month at least).

Room Tip: Check for hot water
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled on business
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Gordon H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
19 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 January 2014

We, a family with two children, spent two nights at the Saba in Dec. 2013. It has a lot going for it: our room was very large, beds were comfortable, the sheets were high quality, and the breakfast was pretty nice. It is across the street from a pretty park filled with locals (Andres Bello), and there are a number of decent restaurants close by. However, there are some drawbacks as well: our room overlooked a parking lot and some rusty roofs, the toilet had lots of dried urine around the seat when we arrived, and the sink was totally clogged. When we arrived, check-in took 40 minutes --and nobody was ahead of us! No explanation was given for this delay. In addition, no assistance was offered with our luggage; we weren't even told where the elevator was. Front desk staff have a very laissez-faire attitude toward guests-- rarely a greeting, unable to offer advice about taxi fares, pretty much just kicking back at the desk. Finally, the Saba is NOT a boutique hotel, in terms of amenities or services. The décor was kind of tacky, and the toiletries were cheap. We had to repeatedly ask for more than two towels (there were four of us). Although there was a coffee maker and a desk light, there were not outlets for them--the cords just dangled uselessly. There just weren't any of the special touches that make a hotel "boutique." However, the Saba is worth four stars for the reasonable rate, ample room size, decent location, good ACin the rooms (corridors are hot) and cleanliness (after the toilet was cleaned).

Room Tip: The back rooms have an ugly view.
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank EEDC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
48 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 December 2013 via mobile

After reading the trip advisor reviews we booked the Saba hotel for 4 nights. This hotel has been around for one year so we expected much more than we received.

Do not stay here if you don't speak Spanish. This is a local hotel and NO ONE speaks English. We were not sure whether they just can't speak English or whether they just pretend they don't understand and do not respond. The front desk would just smile,nod but simple requests like more toilet paper, were never fulfilled.

Do not stay here if you enjoy a clean room. The maid from hell would not give us more than 1 hand towel at a time. Forget the face cloths or Kleenex and when we went to use the bath gel the tube was empty. It was left over from the last guest. Who stayed there

No additional toilet paper and the floors were not swept or washed the whole 4 days. The dust bunnies filled with someone else's hair became our friends for the whole time we were there. We wiped the floor with paper and it came up black with dirt. We brought the dirty paper to the desk and asked for the floor to be cleaned. All we got was a smile but no response.

The server in the restaurant was another disaster. Stubborn and couldn't get her act together. While we didn't starve, it was an ordeal. After the first day she warmed up and the service improved.

On the last day the internet went down but the people behind the desk would not admit anything was wrong even after several people complained.

Trip advisor, you missed on this one.






Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
5 Thank kmsdodo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pensacola, Florida
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 December 2013

This was the third time we have stayed at Saba. The property is kept immaculate. It is safe for families and free of noise. The staff was very polite and responsive to questions and offered to help at every turn. Very limited English but they keep Google Translate handy to help and therefore we had no trouble communicating. The restaurant served delicious food, although the menu was very limited and they have no alcohol permit so no beer or wine. Breakfast was very good.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled on business
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Jerry M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Porto, Portugal
Level Contributor
21 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 December 2013

We stayed there for a very good price and its location is also good, in a busy street with bars and restaurants in the nearby. The room and bathroom were big and confortable. The staff is extremely friendly, including Mauricio, the taxi driver that works with the hotel. However, breakfast could be a lot better, considering the lack of options...

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank sofiagf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Saba Hotel

Property: The Saba Hotel
Address: Via Argentina | Front of Andres Bello Park, Panama City, Panama
Phone Number:
Region: Panama > Panama Province > Panama City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #57 of 116 Hotels in Panama City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Saba Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 49
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Saba Hotel Panama/Panama City

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