I just returned from a four day stay at the Playa Blanca resort, which was the first time I have been there. The Good: Arriving seems pleasant as it goes through a nice residential area on fairly clean roads.... Check in was friendly and fast, felt accommodating to us (we were my family of four and my wife's parents in separate rooms). I asked for rooms side by side, and larger beds for my family and was assured we were give that by management.
Other good things are the pools which are nicely sized, good play areas for the kids with a water slide, lots of lifeguards, clean as can be expected and good chairs to sit on and some shaded areas..... so far, so good.... including the food selection at the main dining room, I don't think anyone would complain about. Also, the wait staff had a few really nice people (and a few duds but that is to be expected)..... also, the pool snack bar was always stocked with finger foods and fruit etc... and tasted good to boot.
The Bad: We were given rooms separated and not together! Our parents room was great... modern and clean, but our room had smaller beds, no towels in the bathroom, a heavy odor or urine in the bathroom, the hot water valve at the shower fell off and could only work if one pushed it onto the striped stem, the refrigerator leaked water onto the floor, the safe had dead batteries, the duvet on one bed was dirty leaving me to believe they didn't even change the bed sheets but I found out they at least did that and the phone would not call out, but should I go on? Also, the food, while great, was really in only one main dining room. They had a sushi place inside the main dining hall on the end area, but it had to be reserved so they denied us access however only two tables out of about 15 had people for the entire two hours we were in the area that first night.... the second night they closed that restaurant!.... so very little choice in dining here. One other thing worth mentioning, we never had hot water... it might get lukewarm after five or ten minutes waiting, but never did it get hot, in either room spread far apart, so it was just not comfortable.
The Ugly: The beach at Play Blanca, which translates into English as White Beach, was mostly black! Volcanic sand or something but it looked dirty..... also, the concession for the normally free beach fun items was given over to a private company and they had very high prices on everything!! Too high to even consider using anything to have fun in the water there (compared to the nearby all inclusive Decameron who let you even use their Hobbie catamarans free! Plus their beach is at least all white or beige anyway... Here at Playa Blanca, they wanted $40 per hour for the Hobbie Cats!
They advertise this huge pool for Playa Blanca (maybe second largest in latin america?) but it is not part of the hotel..... and it is huge if you decide to walk over and see it...... but it is useless and no one was using it as it is lined on the bottom with white rubber and the rubber has lifted in many places creating large bubbles, plus the white makes it reflect the sun and it is so bright and hot there, it is actually unbearable!!! We all looked and then left as soon as possible knowing now it is just a marketing gimmick to sell condos there...... We also had a medical emergency while there not related to the hotel but, the nurse who came by, didn't know how to take blood pressure, showed little interest in helping us, charged a cash fee and the nearest hospital or doctor was about 25 minutes away, but when we got there, there were no doctors and we had to wait for over two hours!!!! When we got back, we needed a wheel chair or help to get my wife back to the room, but they said they could not give us one or anyone to help me! Needless to say that left a bed impression of them and the area in general. Don't plan on having an emergency or even a heart attack at this hotel please!
Overall, we would return here knowing the limits in advance and would check our room carefully before letting the bellman go.... if you want a relatively quiet vacation and smaller hotel, this may be for you. If you want a lot to do, a huge hotel grounds, more pools and many restaurant choices, then go to the Decameron Hotel down the road. The general dining food is not as good but the specialty restaurants easily make up for that.
By the way, the kids club which we counted on for our four year old, remained closed for the days we were there!! Shame on them for that.
We got to our rooms which was not easy since everything had to be carried upstairs by hand... but we had help to do that. After we entered our room, we
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- Also Known As:
- Playa Blanca Hotel Farallon
- Playa Blanca Hotel And Resort
- Hotel Playa Blanca Panama
- Playa Blanca Resort Panama
- Playa Blanca Panama City
- Blanca Panama Playa
- Hotel Playa Blanca Beach Resort Panama/Farallon