The location is absolutely the best you can have in Casco Viejo, close to both plazas with outdoor restaurants, close to boutique artsy shops, great ice cream store downstairs, easy to walk to fish market, and waterfront park, near everything we wanted to see in the city. In safer part of Casco Veijo than some other nice hotels in Casco Viejo. Our "room" was 2C and was as large as described with a full kitchen, washer/dryer (with plenty of soap & dryer sheets provided), long balcony complete with chairs & table. [Washer & dryer came in really handy after many days of jungle adventures! Arrived in Panama City with loads of dirty, smelly clothing; left with clean nice smelling clothes. Made it so much easier to pack, and much more pleasant getting home.] The kitchen was even stocked with plenty of plates & glasses, spices, lots of cooking tools, toaster (big enough for bagels), microwave, stove, oven, full fridge, etc. A/C unit in main room and each bedroom (we had 2 bedrooms, each with their own bath). Staff added air mattress in main room, so we fit 7 people the first night. After that there were just three of us, so apartment fit us very well, better than if we needed several hotel rooms.
They have arrangement with wonderful drivers to take you wherever you want for a reasonable rate. Was even able to use them for rides on nights we weren't staying in Panama City; much more accommodating than drivers for another B&B we visited.
Problems: we emailed many times to arrange pickup at airports. First arrival in Panama worked out great! Got driver to bring us to a rental car at the domestic airport (so we didn't have to drive thru Panama City during rush hour) and escort us to Gamboa (heard it might be hard to find in the dark). That worked out perfectly! Left the city for days (look up reviews for Canopy B&B & La Loma Jungle Resort) and came back to domestic airport to return car and come to hotel. Had arranged arrival times days in advance and hadn't had access to email while in the jungle. No one arrived to pick us up. Our phones were supposed to work in Panama, but didn't work at domestic airport (Gelabert/Albrook). Had to have car rental agency call hotel. He helped a little but was trying to close. Turns out they totally forgot to pick us up. All our luggage was on the street, it was getting dark, and airport was closing. So we took a taxi. Asked car rental agent to get detailed info for taxi driver so we wouldn't get lost (heard hotel was hard to find). Several taxi driver discussed the written notes for several minutes and finally one said he would take us to our hotel without a problem. Seems he just wanted the ride. He was clueless driving around Casco Viejo and charged us twice as much as originally suggested. So be careful. Confirm with hotel about drivers even if you thought everything was all set. If you need to take a taxi, bring a map of Casco Viejo with you (easy to find online or get at any hotel in Casco Vejo). It really is easy to navigate in the area once you know it. Airport taxis just don't seem to come to area too often.
Staff seemed understaffed while we were there. Air mattress was not set up as confirmed in advance. Had to arrange at late hour. No one was in hotel office when we arrived. Seems people we confirmed all our arrangements with in advance had not communicated anything to staff. Hotel staff left a local cell phone in our room for our use while in Panama City. Great idea, but phone never had phone service wherever we were. Had to walk over to Canal House (their other property) to get help. We stayed here because of all the great reviews of wonderful staff, but did not experience that. The help we got once we found someone that night was wonderful, but we should not have had to walk around city trying to find help. Rarely found English speaking staff in office during our three days there. Never met the folks that we arranged everything with in advance. Experience ended up being more of an apartment in the city than a hotel.
Rooms were not as airy & sunny as described. Although there are ample windows and french doors to balcony, all the windows have heavy curtains and shutters. It was much too hot & humid in the city while we were there to want to turn off a/c and open doors & windows (and we don't even own a/c at home!). I tried to adjust shutters to allow more light through, and move curtains to the side, but some are not moveable. So rooms were still darker than we like.
Not sure I could get my husband to come back here. Lacking adequate staff and dark rooms were a real problem for him.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Avoid the boring chain hotels! We are a boutique fleet of luxury apartments for rent by night in the historic district of Casco Viejo, Panama City. Located just minutes from downtown, Casco Viejo is a supremely unique neighborhood. Los Cuatro Tulipanes specializes in 100% personalized service and 100% authentic travel experiences. Travelers only... ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Los Cuatro Tulipanes Hotel Panama City
- Los Cuatro Tulipanes Panama/Panama City