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“Probably the best value in El Valle.”
Review of Casa Mariposa

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Casa Mariposa
Certificate of Excellence
Marseille, France
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Probably the best value in El Valle.”
Reviewed 28 April 2014

This isn't really a hotel per se, but rather a home owned by an older expat couple with a duplex guest house in the garden and a flat in the main structure. What that entails is that the services provided are more in line with hostels than hotels.

The good:

- Fantastic location. Turn right and walk a kilometre, you're at the supermarket. 200m and you're at one chino, 200m the other way and you're at the other. You're five minutes outside of town by foot and maybe 45 minutes from either opposing ends of the valley.

- Very nice hosts. They're pretty reserved and not ones to chat often, but they were always very polite and friendly.

- Free coffee and tea in the mornings delivered to your room. Right now I'm doing coffee in the gazebo hammock with a small stream behind me and a view of the mountains in front surrounded by hummingbirds. For this alone I'd stay here again.

- It's a really high quality, if simple, room. The guest room as of April 2014 is $240/w ($220 starting in May, rainy season). You get two comfortable beds, one queen and one double, with warm blankets and soft pillows. The shower has pressure to it and runs all the way up to scorching, a much needed luxury in Panama considering that most showers here are weak and cold. It's clean, it lights well, it's got great surroundings, and unless you're looking for chocolates on your pillow it has everything you need including a minifridge with $1 national beers.

- They have animals. Chickens, a black lab who instantly loves everyone he meets, two sloths but they only really come out for a couple hours a day in the afternoon so I've not personally seen them after the first day. The garden is full of birds, frogs, and plants though those aren't animals.

- The power is steady. This was an issue in other small Panamanian towns. It didn't go out once here, though the bathroom light tends to waver sometimes.

The bad:

- The internet is wonky. It only extends to the guest rooms about 20% of the time and even then is really weak. In the gazebo and the watch tower you can generally get a steady connection and download at 100-500kb/s, but you probably won't be surfing in bed.

- The chickens are right across from the guest rooms and they like to announce this. I didn't wake up at 6AM by choice, but because roosters are sadists.

- There isn't on-site laundry. The laundromat is about 200m to your right as you exit and costs 75 cents to wash and $1 to dry. If you're staying for a weekend it's no big deal, but after a week you start to wish pillow cases/sheets/towels were washed. Again it's a house rather than a hotel.

- The kitchen is locked down in the main structure. Any request for utensils I had was filled immediately, but it's not a public kitchen as far as I know. El Valle is a retreat for wealthy Panamanians and you'll struggle to feed two for under $15-20. That's not much at first glance, but you're paying that at every meal.

- You're in a garden and there are bugs. Not a lot and it was never an issue for me, but my girlfriend doesn't like bugs so she had some stressful nights.

- The noise level gets trying sometimes. It's right on the main road and Panamanians like to awaken early. From about 6AM to midnight you'll have traffic, fruit vendors announcing their truckloads over megaphone, insect and bird noise, lawn mowing, etc etc. There aren't any other options in the same price range for places away from this noise as far as I know.

All in all, I'd highly recommend this place and fully intend to stay here again if I come back to Panama. It works out to the price of a cheap motel in the US or Europe, but not once did it feel cheap or artificial. It's a genuinely great option.

Room Tip: The garden guest room closest to the main structure might have more reliable wifi access.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank binkohorse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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123 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Deerfield Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
74 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 April 2014

We had no expectation but were delightfully surprised at the warm welcome, lovely accommodations. Ursula and Harry are in constant service without being intrusive. A really memorable surprise was the delicious breakfast awaiting us in the little gazebo covered in flowering vines. Our hosts rescued baby Sloths and allowed us to hold one. I immediately sent that picture off to the kids! I know they will want to come with us next trip to El Valle and of course, we will come back again and again.

Room Tip: I don't think there are any "bad" rooms, event the one we had near the highway was lov...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank TheRevs02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LONG LAKE
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 8 April 2014

My husband and teenage daughter spent two nights here recently. Harry and Ursula could not have been nicer or more helpful! They suggested places to visit and eat, etc., and were right on the money with every option. Our room was very clean and comfortable, the grounds are beautiful, and the breakfasts delicious and plentiful. (We even had fresh eggs from their chickens one morning!) We appreciated all the fruit--much of which we can't get at home in MN--and delicious preserves. Our daughter (and I) were thrilled with the sloths and were sad to leave. This is truly a unique place!

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank k t
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 April 2014

I stayed 2 nights in March at Casa Mariposa--would have stayed more if they'd had a room available. Ursula & Harry are great, as are their 2 sloths & 1 dog. The garden is absolutely beautiful. Breakfast under the gazebo was relaxing & gave a great start to my day.

Ursula & Harry are hikers, so they will tell you how to get to trail heads for La India Dormida & La Piedra Pintada & will advise you to give local kids a couple of dollars to be your guides on the trails to the sights.

Harry recommended Santa Librada for typical food near Casa Mariposa. These are the kind of things that get one's stay off to a good start.

The room was clean &nice with private bathroom & was quite affordable. Ursula was very responsive to my emails prior to my trip.

I loved Casa Mariposa & El Valle. I will return!!!!!

Room Tip: I just slept in 1 room; didn't see others, but my room faced the garden & I listened to the...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled solo
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Helpful?
2 Thank lmmla91
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Salt Lake City, Utah
Level Contributor
123 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 March 2014

Great place to stay. My family stayed for a night here. The place is very nice, clean. My younger kids loved the time with the sloths, dog and to hangout in the hammock. Owners (Ursula & Harry) are very friendly and helpful.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jay N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Utrecht, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 February 2014

We stayed here for two nights and it was wonderful! El Valle was our first stop after Panama City, it's a sweet little village and Casa Mariposa is a very nice place to stay!! The owners are very friendly and helpful (if you're going to Penonome or David by car ask for the mountain-route!). We had one of the rooms in the garden: painted blue with butterflies and kolibris (lovely), clean and a nice, hot shower!
From Casa Mariposa everything is pretty close (walking distance) and there's enough to see and/or do!
The bonus are two of the pets: Two three-toed sloths! When they're awake they can play and climb in the garden. It's wonderful to see how they move and behave!
We loved it here!!

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Martine B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Level Contributor
857 reviews
183 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 914 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 February 2014

We absolutely loved our two-day stay at Casa Mariposa where we were lucky to get the self- catering courtyard apartment. Apparently it was usually not available for just two days

The apartment was very beautiful, quiet and was equipped with everything you needed to have a great stay. The bedroom had a double bed. We were three people, but there was a third bed closer to the bathroom, which was big enough for an adult.

We cooked two wonderful meals there and enjoyed the cool evenings in the inner courtyard. The roof top area gave additional room to sit or hammock around to read a book.

The nice thing about the place was that it was close to all the nice restaurants, markets, a waterfall, and hiking areas. The surrounding garden also was lush and beautiful, and an added attraction was observing the adopted sloths. During day time we traveled around in El Valle de Anton, but looked forward to come back to our nice home.

The hostess, Ursula prepared breakfast for guests and the self-catering apartment also was served at $5 /person, which was a great deal. The breakfast was tasty & plentiful.

We enjoyed the beauty of the place and hospitality of the owners, Ursula & Harry. It was really too short a visit. We will be back and do the hikes that we missed this time.We recommend casa Mariposa enthusiastically to anyone who appreciates beauty and nice people!

Room Tip: If you can, get et the self-catering courtyard apartment for a week or so and enjoy the beautiful El...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank SunnyW358
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Casa Mariposa

Property: Casa Mariposa
Address: Calle Principal | 200 mts despues de mini super Hong Kong, a mano Izquierda, El Valle de Anton 1001, Panama
Region: Panama > Cocle Province > El Valle de Anton
Amenities:
Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 14 B&Bs / Inns in El Valle de Anton
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Casa Mariposa is a guesthouse in the center of el Valle de Anton with an apartment and two guestrooms for rent. The huge terrace offers a wonderful view of the mountains, like the India Dormida,, Caraiguana and the Gaital. The unique tropical garden invites you to relax and enjoy bird watching. Parking and Wifi are included. ... more   less 

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