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“Needs some tlc...avoid 6 bed dorm and hostelbookers.com” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Bambu Hostel

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Bambu Hostel
Calle Virgincita | San Mateo neighborhood, David, Panama   |  
Hotel amenities
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Needs some tlc...avoid 6 bed dorm and hostelbookers.com”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

Place is a little rough around the edges. Avoid the 6 bed dorm if you can- was unbearably hot and only 2 weak pedestal fans to try and blow some air around. Staff friendly enough but seems like they have major problems keeping track of bookings and who is in/going to be in what room. Nice pool, garden and bar area. Don't book through hostelbookers.com as although its listed, the staff advised me that they haven't used the website in a long time and that they don't receive booking notifications from them. Although my reservation was void, "luckily" a bed was free. Good, cheap laundry service.

Room Tip: Jungle dorm or private rom with ac
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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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132 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    67
    35
    11
    10
    9
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Families
0
41
46
6
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (31)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
california
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2013

I stayed at this hostel twice during a run to panama from costa rica. The staff at the time were all volunteers and taking care of the place while the owners were gone. The staff that was there were very friendly, open, and made you feel welcome. A nice change from the purple place.

This place does have a nice little pool and patio which is a nice place to relax, especially while in david. (There isn't much to do in the city except shop) The location is far from town but in a quiet area. There is a shopping center within a ten minute walk. The kitchen is small but usuable. The coffee in the mornings was often non existant but it didn't make much difference.

I stayed in the jungle tree house dorm as well as a private room. The private rooms are nice, inexpensive, and come with tv and ac. This place also has a cool bar outside by the pool and lots of hammocks around to relax in.

I would recommend this hostel to someone looking for a couple night stopover in david on the way to their next destination. There are other hostels located right downtown which are just as nice. Bambu had a mixed age group but the majority of the guests were very nice and outgoing.

Room Tip: The tree house is a nice dorm, open air with bug nets. The private rooms are nice also but they are...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Portland, Oregon
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

I was desperate to use the internet to take care of an airline ticket SNAFU on Jan 1st, but all of the cyber cafes were closed. I arrived at the hostel and asked if I could use their computers for a fee. The very friendly gentleman at the reception told me I was welcome to use them for free. Connection was great and I solved my problem with the help of Bambu Hostel. Thanks!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 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.
Charleston, South Carolina
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

This is a very good spot to break up the partying between Panama City and Bocas. I went expecting to stay a night and ended up staying 3 nights. The rooms, kitchen, and pool were all clean enough, and the staff was helpful but also laid back and gave me my space. I was pretty worn out from traveling so it was nice to chill by the pool and drink dollar beers all day with the rest of the guests.

Room Tip: I stayed in the hut out back. Pretty solid for only 9 bucks.
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Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pensacola, Florida
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2012

This hostel is a good place to take a break. Everything about it just says "relax." Hammocks are everywhere, the cheapest accommodations are in a indigenous style hut raised above the ground on huge logs that have come back to life and sprouted branches, and the bar has the chillest ambience of any hostel I've been to. It's small, but the bartender puts so much of his laidback personality into it that you can almost imagine you hear the Caribbean Sea lapping gently lapping onto the beach. They have a pool too, cable television and ample hang out areas both in front and back. The owner shows up occasionally and enjoys playing his guitar with guests, but he has given ample leeway to his staff, a group of South Americans who have definitely left their mark on the place - the bar and the chill atmosphere is largely due to changes they've made I hear. Of all hostels I've been to in Panama, this one had the most Latin American guests, good for practicing your Spanish certainly. The only thing I would change would be the kitchen - it could use some more utensils.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
world
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2012

i walked in looking for nothing special, I then find a hostel that has very economic tree house plenty of personal space and several locations ranging from a small bar, pool, tv area with computers and hammocks every were all this......plus some weights to lift i found many things i would find in a hotel the great staff made me feel at home just like a hostel i gave it a 5 hotel like options with hostel staff

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2012

the reviews told me it'd be awesome! my own experience, less so...

staff were great,don't get me wrong.. but it has the feeling of an absentee landlord- which i think is the case, owners nowhere in sight.

rooms themselves are pretty clean, nice to see-
but-kitchen,common areas?sorry-man;it smells funky,a little too much backpacker "vibe",sofas:funky&hanging around for weeks- things uncleaned for quite some time in the kitchen, just laying around until it attracts vermin..
Wanted to like it, wanted to give more stars. Couldn't in good faith.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bambu Hostel

Address: Calle Virgincita | San Mateo neighborhood, David, Panama
Location: Panama > Chiriqui Province > David
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Specialty Lodging in David
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
WE ARE A BACKPACKERS' HOSTEL, NOT A HOTEL OR AN INN OR LODGE We just completed a large out door kitchen with ten burners and loads of counter space all you need to create a gourmet creation (or a backpackers bowl of pasta) in the comfort and beauty of our flowing garden and pool.. When you are done following all the other tourists to Boquete and Bocas; come spend some time in David. This is real Panama. You will be interacting with Panamanians rather than always being around other tourists. This is a chance to stay at a super cool hostel and explore a real Panamanian city. Dance all night long to Salsa, Merengue, Rock and Reggaeton.. Great restaurants and shopping; and David is cheap!!!! 1/2 The price of Costa Rica. How about a $1 beer in a bar? David is a safe and friendly city too. Get your Latino on in David! New Jungle House in Garden at Bambu Hostel see photo below, built on stilts from native wood and bambu walls with tin roof, sleeps 10 backpackers and overlooks the sparkling pool, only dorm of its kind in Panama! Lonely Planet Recommended International Backpackers Hostel with a Pool and Deluxe tropical gardens in David Panama.We welcome Backpackers and International Travelers from all corners of the world. David is fun! It has everything that a weary traveler could need to recharge the batteries, fine dining, casinos, movie theaters, inexpensive shopping, nightclubs and discos, festivals, and, within 45 minutes, awesome mountains, Caldera Hot Springs, Playa Barqueta and Costa Rica. Come stay with us at Bambu, relax in the garden, swing on a hammock with a cold beer at the Bambu pool bar, dip in the pool and watch the tropical birds flying in the backyard. We have very few rules here, just come with a good attitude and have fun, but just remember this: If you think that you are going to have it all for a low price, think again. When you choose to stay at a hostel you need to accept the unwritten (until now) agreement of hosteling. The agreement is that there is a trade off. The deal says that you will receive a awesome travelers' community with lots of amenities, in our case, a clean luxury swimming pool, wifi, gardens with hammocks, amazing outdoor kitchen, laundry service, travel services, computers with skype, phone calls, books, games, a pool side bar with $1 beer, excellent and cheap seafood meals, etc . What you might not get is 100% quietness, privacy and comfort. That is the trade off at most backpacker hostels. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bambu Hotel David
Bambu Hostel Panama/David

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