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“A seriously understaffed hotel” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of Crater Valley

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Crater Valley
Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“A seriously understaffed hotel”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 December 2011

We booked in here for two nights - Friday and Saturday. Although we understood that check in was not until 4 p.m. we did arrive about midday and were immediarely checked in by a young lady to our room, India Dormida. The room was rather dark and the uneven stone flooring was quite hard on the feet,especially if you were barefoot. However, the bed was comfortable, the TV was adequate and the bathroom somewhat odd where you had to climb over a parapet to get into the shower! I suppose it looked even darker since we arrived in a rainstorm.

Still, we didn't expect to spend all our time in the room and as we arrived at noon we enquired when was lunch being served. Now we were told that lunch was not being served, neither dinner for that matter, because she was the only member of staff at the hotel! There was a family leaving that day and after that we appeared to be the only guests in the hotel although another couple did turn up a bit later.

As the hotel is about a mile from the village and we didn't have a car *(we arrived by taxi from Playa Blanca) we had to take another taxi to the village to get lunch. A perfectly adequate local restaurant, Tierra y Mar, and inexpensive, too. A bit of souvenir hunting at the craft shops and then a taxi back to the hotel.

The hotel itself is very beautiful - lovely grounds, a nice swimming pool, a hot tub (pity it wasn't heated) and a jacuzzi were not inviting enough for a cool, rainy day. The bar looked to be in somewhat disrepair, but the receptionist (who by this time - 4 or 5 p.m.) was cleaning out the room of the people who had left at the time we arrived, broke off from this to offer me the only item available from the bar - a beer.

We ordered another taxi to go to dinner at Bruschetta which was pretty good without being exceptional and got back at 9 p.m. where the one and only member of staff greeted us before locking up.

At this stage we certainly felt that we could not stay another day like this, so we told the lady that we would check out in the morning instead of the next day which she accepted.

The next morning the staff had doubled - there were two ladies now, the original one and another who appeared to be her superior. The superior explained to us that there were no staff at the hotel the previous day because all the staff had gone to Panama City for their staff Christmas party! Nice of them to tell us!

The continental breakfast was adequate - that's all and we were assured that the restaurant would be open that night. But we didn't see any more staff, so we thought it was best to leave anyway.

It seems from other reviewers that understaffing is quite common here. This is not a question of blaming the people running the hotel but in senior management who seem to reside in the USA. A pity, because the place is beautiful, but you can't run a hotell like this. The only saving grace was that the (free) internet service worked (at least in the public areas but not in our bedroom) - something that doesn't often happen in Panama.

Room Tip: Find the biggest and brightest!
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank heinz57_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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78 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
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English first
Panama
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 December 2011

Had a reservation at Crater Valley. Our guide was told that the room will not be ready before 330 although we asked for an earlier check in. We we arrived at 445 pm the place was dark, only a maid at the reception telling that the room was not ready. No manager, no responsible people around. The maid said that after a party they have now all gone home, there is no kitchen service although we had booked dinner and breakfast. The place loked pretty much like shut down, we did not find any person we could talk to despite our confirmed reservation. A hotel where nobody is there and nobody is responsible is about the last you would expect from an alledged 4 Star hotel. Prospective travellers should be prepared for the worst.
We took nevertheless a view of a room, looked more like a 2 Star room with no amenities, small, unattractive.

Room Tip: choose the Mandarin, abeatiful hotel with a charming service.
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Hans B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marisa G, Owner at Crater Valley, responded to this review, 12 September 2013
As of April 2013, our Resort has gone through a Major Renovation. Our rooms have been updated completely. New beds, linens, finishes, TV, A/C and celing fans. Upgraded bathrooms. Our staff has increased and has gone through positive changes... not to mention much improved morale. Our property is one of the largest and most beautiful estates in the Valley. Our large gardening staff oversees our expansive grounds, swimming pool, and heated jacuzzi. Please return - we would love for you to enjoy the NEW Crater Valley Bed and Breakfast Resort!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Palm Coast, Florida
Level Contributor
182 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 August 2011

We were there 3 nights ago and were amazed. All of the good things in the other reviews are true and I would stay here again in a second. Any questions please ask. Roberto and his staff were very nice.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank psblin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Varese, Italy
Level Contributor
273 reviews
58 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 205 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 August 2011

This time stayed at the Pilón because the rest of my preferred rooms Cariguana, Gaital, Manigordo, Coatimundi were all occupied or in renovation. The room is a bit small but nice as my last stay more than 2 years ago.

Reception: No change as seen last time. But this time we arrived to the hotel under a copious rain and there were several buckets with rain water dripping from the roof and wet all the reception (was worried about the rooms but seems that the roof in room areas are better or double covered)

Room: Rustic style with tv, nice large bathroom with shower and toiletries (but no fixed hairdryer, have to ask them); cleaned sheets/towels. Access to the back terrace by climbing the large window. As per my last review is still nice sitting at the rocking couch of the back terrace (they took away the hammock) to read or relax (check the photo that I enclosed with this review).

Meals: Are still being served by this terrace after the reception and close by the bar.
Breakfast: No change as remembered from the last stay. Served in a small buffet coffee, tea, cereals, milk, juice, fresh fruit (mangoes from their trees!), warm breads, marmalades, butter, classic continental breakfast.
Lunch/Dinner: No restaurant service because they sent the cook on holidays (June). To lunch or dinner is necessary to go somewhere away and not short walking distance from here (this time we came with no car so we spend almost 1 hour walking to town!). I think that the menu is still limited.

Outdoor areas:
Close to the reception there is a climbing wall, obstacle course, small canopy because the hotel manages also an adventure tour company which is easy to arrange.
Pool areas: Still there is the large pool, bar pool and the hot tub. This time we used a lot the hot tub which is really nice during the cool afternoons and we could see hummingbirds flying around.
Green areas: Paths, fruit trees, bridges, ponds will be nicer if better cared. Asked the staff about the toads because during my last stay have seen a lot of them but apparently a disease have exterminated them, but still can hear some croaking frogs..
Spa: We never use these services (but still there is the “spa cottage”) but some guests comment to us that they had problems by booking a massage session because the “spa experts” are not inhouse but outside persons because of their schedules etc. and it was easier to go their real “spa workplaces”.

Staff:
Now there are like 4-5 people working there (1 manager, 1 gardener, the rest housemaids/handymen). The manager explained to me that the owners change administration/staff since a year and half ago. Just OK.

Maybe because of the current financial crisis that the hotel stopped to invest for major maintenance (roof) and the 2nd floors, and also got some news that they are planning to sell it. Looks more like a boutique bed & breakfast rather than resort/spa as they advertised. Pity, because like I said, is an almost excellent product but what's going on??

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Tualie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vashon, Washington
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 March 2011

Stayed two nights and loved it. Gardens were beautiful, pool was amazing. Favorite pool of the entire month we spent in Panama and Costa Rica....per my 10 and 14yo sons. They also had a great time on the obstacle course and found fireflies at night.

Lunch and dinner menu were basic, fish or chicken with rice. Breakfast buffet was nice and loved the fresh baked bread.

Room was clean bed comfy.......the buildings was quiet and peaceful even though I am pretty sure it was ful when we were there. Which is just what we needed after a week of pretty hectic travel.

Good value and would definitly stay again.

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled with family
    • 4 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
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lieschan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Quebec
Level Contributor
19 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 July 2010

My family and I stayed 3 nights at the Crater Valley and enjoyed our stay.

The place is clean and comfortable. The pools and spa are great. We could see the mountains around and the gardens at the hotel are just beautiful

We were there in the low season, so it was very quiet and had good service.

However, i would appreciate a more copious breakfast.

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank LucQuebec
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Windsor, Canada
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 June 2010

This hidden gem is in a secluded section of the beautiful valley. Even the front driveway is serene, and your entire stay will be filled with lush tranquility.

It is amazing that this is not the most popular hotel in the Valley. It must be that few people know of its existence.

There is a small but friendly staff serving an even smaller number of guests. There is a romantic fireplace, well-appointed rooms (one one with air conditioning but they valley's year-round spring-like climate does not often require a/c) and there is even an organic herb garden filled with basil and rosemary and other wonderfully aromatic herbs.

Not all of the services are available at all times because of the limited staff. But this is by far the most romantic hotel in the valley. (And there is another spa on the main street where I practiced yoga for free and had a fabulous massage.)

I wholeheartedly recommend Crater Valley Hotel for couples, families and for personal retreats. You will be happy with this choice!

  • Stayed May 2010, travelled on business
    • 4 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 yogilover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Crater Valley

Property: Crater Valley
Address: Calle Ranita de Oro | Capirita, El Valle de Anton, Panama
Region: Panama > Cocle Province > El Valle de Anton
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 11 B&Bs / Inns in El Valle de Anton
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3 star — Crater Valley 3*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This well-known 8-bedroom Family Estate established by Avelina "Bilo" Gonzalez-Revilla, is one of the most breath-taking properties in all of El Valle. Recently converted to a Bed and Breakfast Resort, its expansive grounds allows for guests to wander the gardens and enjoy the unique collection of Flora. Its serenity intices you to basque by the swimming pool, bird watch, or nap in one of the many hammocks. Expansive RENOVATIONS were completed in April 2013. Each of the Guest Rooms have been standardized and equipped with Air Conditioners, ceiling fans, deluxe linens, down pillows, and duvets. Our staff is available to organize Adventure Tours in the valley, on-site Massages, visit the town's Zoo, world-famous Sunday Market, etc. All you need to do is ask. We are here to pamper you - this is your Home away from Home.... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Crater Valley Hotel El Valle De Anton

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