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“Way over-priced”

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Los Quetzales Lodge & Spa
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 5 July 2014

I believe this resort is extremely overpriced. Even with my friends’ jubilado (retiree) discount, which took about 30 percent off our bill, it was too expensive. I was so upset about the pricing that I thought of leaving. We stayed in Chalet 8. The bed is decent and the bathroom is nice, but the sofa in the bedroom is so worn that you are almost on the ground when you sit in it. The whole chalet is worn and in serious need of updating. Guests who stayed in rooms in the lodge and in the newer cabins also found the prices too high. If I went again I would stay in a nearby town or on the Costa Rican side of Las Amistad International Park, where you can find rooms for much less.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with friends
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1  Thank 1travlgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 26 June 2014

The cabanas are for hard core birders or 4WD enthusiasts or anyone with enough pluck to enjoy a rugged trip. Once you make it over the very rocky road (even with AWD Kia, I bottomed out many times), it is the best place in Panama to stay. The cains are nestled in the deep forest and we saw many Quetzals right from the cabin in the aguacatillo trees above. We stayed in the upper level of Cabana 4 and could not get internet. However, if you walk up to Cabana 6, you can get excellent internet. That is where their tower is and the owner was kind enough to give us the keys so we could sit on the front porch and use internet as much as we liked. The signal was good enough that I could talk to my husband in the States using Google Talk from my computer.

The kitchen was pretty good, with enough pots and pans to cook trout (excellent) that we ordered from the lodge to be delivered, as well as rice and veggies. Big dining table and lots of plates, silverware, etc.

There was a wood burning stove and plenty of firewood and newspaper to start a cozy fire. We had some damp clothes that we hung above to dry in the heat.

Overall, just a magical place and well worth the drive. We were in Panama for 10 days and this was my favorite spot. We were here June 18 and 19 and still saw at least 5 Quetzals easily, as well as many other birds. It rained a bit everyday but cleared up and the temperature was perfect and cool.

Room Tip: Cabana 6 is up a pretty steep incline, but the view is spectacular. If you had help getting luggage...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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Thank Als466
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 May 2014

Two of us stayed (in room 15) for a couple of nights; this is on the ground level, not part of the main lodge but across the grassy area. We had a fireplace which was very nice given that the rainy season has started and it's a bit cool at night. The bed was fine, though a bit soft for one of us. The shower was amazing, and no problem with hot water. Breakfast was fine, good fruit, eggs, cereal and breads, as well as juices, coffee and organic hot chocolate made there from locally grown cacao. In fact, upon arriving, we were greeted with hot chocolate and coffee. We ate two dinners, one lunch and two breakfasts there and their food is excellent--the prices are very reasonable as well. We had fresh tuna (three of us for dinner one night) prepared three different ways and we were all pleased with our selections. Most of the greens and vegetables are grown right there on the property.

What we really appreciate is the efforts that Carlos, the owner, has put into developing this ecolodge. Carlos is quite knowledgeable about the environment in this part of Central America, as well as its wildlife. As part of the cost of the room, you are offered a free guided hike, and we thoroughly enjoyed that. What a beautiful area of Panama this is. We cannot wait to go back. We just want to emphasize that Carlos and his staff are so hospitable. We really felt at home and want to share with everyone what a lovely experience you can look forward to having.

Further, I chose to have a massage. For 90 minutes, at a cost of only 45 dollars, I had one of the best Deep Tissue massages that I've had in years. (Two of the women who work at the reception desk are trained in massage.)

Overall, we highly recommend Los Quetzales. We look forward to returning soon.

Room Tip: we stayed in room 15, so ground level. The ones above looked great too, but we were only two so we...
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank NamasteJudi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 May 2014

Disclaimer: There are a few things going on at Los Quetzales--they have cabins, fancy nice rooms, an expensive restaurant, and a hostel-style dorm room. I am writing about the dorm room, from the point of view of a long-term backpacker who is used to staying in cheap, crappy shared rooms. My review is targeted to other low-budget backpackers.
I was the only person staying in the dorm room when I was there, so it seemed quite luxurious to me. There are a lot of beds in a small room, and I think it would be very crowded at max capacity. The room itself--the beds, the furniture, decor, etc--are very nice for a hostel. Woody, cozy, very clean. Amazing hot shower, nice sheets, beds, towels, etc. There is no kitchen available to use, and the on-site restaurant is very expensive. The room was by far the most expensive dorm room I payed for in Central America--$18 for a bed, but this didn't bother me since I had the whole place to myself, and it was effectively a private room for the five nights I spent there. They had an option to tack on a nice breakfast buffet and a guided morning rainforest tour for an extra $7. This is worth doing once or twice--I did see quetzales and hummingbirds that the guide pointed out that I would have missed.
There are several nice places to go hiking in the area: Parque Internacional La Amistad, Los Quetzales trail, and, most notably, the longer, more strenuous way up Volcan Baru. This is a beautiful area with a cool, misty climate--lots of farms, mountains, forests. You are also 20 minutes from Volcan by bus, which is a fairly major town with every convenience.
There is a good grocery store almost next door, and a great local-style cheap restaurant past that where you can get your $4 plates of rice, beans, and chicken. Several places nearby serve strawberries and cream.
Overall I enjoyed my stay at Los Quetzales, but it was on the expensive side for my budget.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled solo
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2  Thank jungle999999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2014

April is quetzal nesting season, so we lucked out and saw four! We stayed in cabin #4 in the upper unit and recommend it for 4 people as it has skylights that brighten the place and big porches front and back with lots of hummingbird action. One of the quetzales we even spotted from our front porch. We were not prepared for how cold it was in terms of bringing the right clothing; a fleece and even long underwear might make you more comfortable (I wore yoga pants under my hiking pants). Thankfully there is a wood stove and plenty of firewood, so we could warm up the cabin. The cold is really due to the altitude as the village of Cerro Punto below is typically sunnier and warmer. A rain jacket is a must as you are up in the cloud forest where it's often misty, though the sun does come out.
TRANSPORTATION - The lodge arranged for a taxi pick-up at the David airport and back again for $40-$50. The road from the lodge to the cabins, as others have mentioned, is extremely rough and though a 4-wheel drive can make it, our neighbor was apologizing to his car afterward. Better to ride up in the covered and cushioned wagon behind the tractor and plan to stay at your cabin and hike from there. Going to the lodge for a meal really isn't very appealing given the rough road and certainly too far to walk (though the office personnel said otherwise).
FOOD - We had the taxi driver stop at El Rey in David, which has almost everything, so we were able to cook for ourselves in the cabin, which is fairly well appointed with utensils and pans for cooking. If you're trying to keep costs down, that's an option.
THE LODGE - We were in the lodge for the last night and really enjoyed it as well. It was nice to have someone cook for us and the food was delicious. I enjoyed my massage and though there were no yoga classes, we used the beautiful space by the river for our own yoga sessions, using their mats. The bed in our room had an extra layer of memory foam which made it especially comfortable after roughing it at the cabin. Best of all was the friendliness of the people in town and its environs. Farmers offered us carrots and peaches and were super nice. It is a sweet little area. All the employees at the lodge were also very nice and helpful, giving us a parting gift of fresh herbs to take with us. Sorry to read of the person who ran into the school group, but barring that, I would highly recommend Los Quetzales.
COMMUNICATION: Though wi-fi is available in the lodge, we seemed to be in a dead zone at cabin #4. We could not communicate using our phone or the internet, except on rare occasion. We did send messages via the guides that came from the lodge each morning to take us on walks.

Room Tip: Cabins #8 & 9 are the prime spots, but I think they require quite a few people. Cabin #6 is far...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Laurel B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 April 2014

This is a very comfortable hotel in an awe inspiring part of the world. The true beauty is in the farmers and their crops on the sloped hills of Cerro Punta. The hotel itself was more than adequate with great meals, attentive staff, and fast internet. The meals are slightly expensive but they are well made. There are also some small restaurant/street food options worth checking out, I recommend the batido lady down the street. Also, definitely take advantage of the complimentary morning hike. Habel, the knowledgeable and comedic tour guide takes you up the hill to the trail head on the back of his tractor. Then you are lead on a great hour long hike in the forest, great way to start the day.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
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Thank Timo P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 March 2014

We booked a month in advance one room for 2 and the only available one was the suite at 130$. As we were planning a rest day & night, we though that we would enjoy the premises and great calm night. We arrived around 2.00pm and the reception asked us if we liked children; as I have 2, I said yes. We were than asked to come for diner at 6.00pm because it was fully booked from 7.00 till 9.00pm and for breakfast before 7.00am or after 8.00am. Later we saw that a private school and its 80 children were staying at the hotel for a few days. We spent our evening between shouting children because they were eating cakes and marshmallows ( the sofa is still sticky) after diner in the bar and it was the only place where we had internet (it does not work in the rooms). Many of the children were sleeping next to our room and were still very active at 11.30pm and some others started at 5.00am. We were able to sleep 4 hours! When we asked for a serious discount because we found the situation unacceptable, the receptionist told us that the mgr proposed us 10% discount. The mgr did not want to come or even to speak with us when we tried to call him. After 1 hour waiting and threatening to stop income calls to the hotel, the mgr accepted our proposal of 50% discount (via a call to the receptionist). He never apologised or even talk to us. Interesting is the fact that the night before, he told us that he wants to repaint the rooms in order to be able to increase the rates. Knowing now the person, I would be very careful to book a room in his hotel. Maybe he has contracts with many private schools from Panama city.....He is an impolite and arrogant person. On the positive side, the evening meal was very good.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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Thank 462Nature
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Los Quetzales Lodge & Spa

Address: Parque International la Amistad | PO Box 55-0039, Guadalupe, Panama
Region: Panama > Panama Province > Guadalupe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Speciality Lodging in Guadalupe
Price Range: £69 - £70 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Los Quetzales Lodge & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 22
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Also Known As:
Los Quetzales Hotel Guadalupe
Los Quetzales Lodge And Spa

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