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“Simply Amazing!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El Otro Lado

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El Otro Lado
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Bahia de Portobelo, Portobelo, Panama   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Portobelo
Avignon, France
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Simply Amazing!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2012

The thing that most striked me was the attention given to every single details of the rooms. They are decorated and furnished with a very refined touch, Besides, the place is extremely peaceful, ideal for honeymooners.

Room Tip: I highly recommend the Sun House
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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60 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    51
    7
    2
    0
    0
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14
37
Solo
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1
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Panama City, Panama
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 2, 2012

This is really paradise. The food is wonderfull and you get treated like royalty. They pay attention to every detail possible to make an unforgettable experience. I came with my husband and kids and we all have had a grand time as well as educationalx learning about Portobello Traditions.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Panama City, Panama
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 29, 2012 via mobile

If you to Panama City, this tiny hotel is a MUST for a day or two. My husband and I live in the city and just went for two nights for a romantic getaway. It was the perfect place for this! Only a 2 hour drive from the city, and we felt like we were a world away. The hotel is beautiful!!!! The decorator must be a genius in the way he combined colors, styles and textures to make a truly unique, cool and quirky hideaway. We stayed in the Forest House which was lovely, spacious and very comfortable, and we checked out all the other cabins which looked equally nice. The service was great, the food and drinks were incredible! We recommend the ceviche and caprinhas. We did the kayak tour and really enjoyed it. Also make sure to check out the reservoir and the old fort of San Fernando right next door.  But the fact of the matter is this is a great hotel to DO NOTHING but lounge by the pool, spend quality time with friends or a significant other and muse about how lucky you are to be there!!!!!  

Stayed April 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2012

El Otro Lado is an amazing place. The attention to detail and beautiful design in the rooms and across the property are truly unique.

When you arrive in Portobelo (small fishing village and port that the Spanish used to use to transport their gold), you are taken on a 5 minute boat ride across the bay to El Otro Lado (land access is blocked by forest and rivers). From here you are taken to your little Caribbean casita overlooking the pool / bay and your vacation begins. In addition to lounging by El Otro Lado's pool and sipping delicious cocktails, there are tons of great activities offered - El Otro Lado will take you on a 15 minute boat ride to a private beach (with lunch and drinks); you can go fishing (on river or ocean), kayak on the rivers surrounded by mangroves full of Panama's diverse bird population, get a massage, have a 'ceviche and champagne tasting' at dusk on a river pontoon, hike the old Spanish fort next to the property (recommended, but watch out for abuelo!), check out the on-site wood shop, and much more.

The food at El Otro Lado was generally quite good. Breakfast is included and lunch and dinner are fixed price and you are served whatever the kitchen is preparing that day (you can order lunch sandwiches a la carte if you want). The majority of the food, particularly the fresh fish, was excellent. One or two meals were a little less stellar, but I think that is more to do with our own high standards.

Lastly, the El Otro Lado staff clearly takes great pride in the property and their guest's enjoyment. As we considered visiting Panama, one of the knocks was always that 'in Panama service is not a priority'. We generally found this to be true, except at El Otro Lado where the service was first rate.

I doubt this hidden gem will remain hidden for long.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maryland
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2012

Given the pricey nature of this place our expectations were high, though cautious. This little boutique retreat is in Panama, after all, our own country which is attracting way too much tourism for its woefully inadequate infrastructure. To say the facilities are just plain beautiful is an understatement. It is hard to find such artfully appointed luxury caribbean style cabanas with the best of everything. The design details are outstanding and the comfort of the ample rooms and bathrooms is quite luxurious. The meals are simple and beautifully presented and served. All the staff is exceedingly friendly and polite and way beyond any other hospitality concern in the country. They are all natives of the neglected, forgotten, historical, unpolished and impoverished gem that is Portobelo, once the most important trading post in Spanish colonial America. One can only hope the rest of the Panamanian tourist workers take notice.

Room Tip: Sunset is closest to the sea and has a wonderfully appointed kitchenette and private deck. The two...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Koksijde, Belgium
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2012

...of life, ...of positive experiences, ...of endulgance during may stay !
Second to none comparable memory of Panama : absorbed by nature and surounded by history, offering tasteful creative and most carefully served meals with a choice of good wines to enjoy it ultimately.

Every day you wait to visit is a day too late !

Here local people really show it is possible to make the difference in taking care of every detail that will make you feel their most important guest, every moment of your stay with them.

Sincere Congratulations -I'll go tell it over the mountains and be back soon.
Werner V - Belgium

Room Tip: As connecting room could serve the house close to the water with 2 bed rooms. Sun House has a kitch...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Regensburg, Germany
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2011

Beautiful place!
After arriving in Panama we got picked up by a chauffeur and were brought to this hidden place.
We had a wonderful romantic weekend in Otro Lado. Surrounded by a lush and beautiful nature on a private bay with a great service, exquisite food and a breathtaking room!!!
Thank you very much, we had a great time!

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El Otro Lado

Address: Bahia de Portobelo, Portobelo, Panama
Location: Panama > Colon Province > Portobelo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Portobelo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — El Otro Lado 4*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
El Otro Lado is a private retreat situated in an exceptional enclave of Portobelo Bay, mixing design, culture, nature and luxury in a unique manner in order to offer its guests authentic, exclusive and custom-made experiences.Situated just over an hour from Panama City, and surrounded by the National Park of Portobelo, El Otro Lado is the perfect place to relax and disconnect while contemplating the exuberant vegetation. With views of the sea, its four exclusive houses of eclectic tropical design integrate simple details with traditional handicraft of the Atlantic Coast.A streak of truly unforgettable experiences, El Otro Lado will take you to a harmonious and dreamlike place which is equipped with all the comforts of modern life. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Otro Lado Hotel Portobelo
El Otro Lado Panama/Portobelo

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