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“Comfortable, fun, and safe choice for Bocas Town” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotelito Del Mar

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Hotelito Del Mar
Calle Primera y Calle 2a, Bocas Town, Isla Colon, Panama   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 14 Hotels in Bocas Town
Austin, Texas
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Comfortable, fun, and safe choice for Bocas Town”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2013

It’s just across the street from the docks and there is a pleasant ambience here in this smaller venue. Lots of colorful artwork and murals give it a fun and comfortable feel. Often, it is the people who make the difference in a hotel, and this is one of those places. Sally and her staff are exceptional and made me feel right at home. Sally built the hotel some 15 years ago and is currently selling it to move back stateside, but assured me her replacement will be up to her standards. She was fun to talk with and I learned a lot about the area from her, along with some great suggestions to take advantage of my limited time in the area.

My downstairs room was just fine with a decent bed and shower. The only oddity was the generic all-plastic sink and cabinet. Such things really don’t bother me as long as it is clean and works well. I’m here for a comfortable stay in a fun place, not expecting top end amenities. This place was just right for me.

Bocas Town is small enough to walk around easily, and Hotelito del Mar is right in the middle but just one block off the main drag. At least under its current owner, I’m happy to recommend it for families or solo travelers like me who want a decent, not-too-expensive, but also fun place to land while exploring all the beauty of the Bocas del Toro area. (Don’t miss the gorgeous Zapatillos Islands!).

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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119 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    65
    43
    9
    1
    1
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21
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Business
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (25)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco, California
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2013

Upstairs quads are spacious and attractive; they're more expensive, but if you can splurge, you'll be more comfortable. Downstairs rooms are quite clean, but musty-smelling. Glade air freshener is used liberally, but doesn't help. Breakfast was minimal--if you miss it for a tour, don't worry: the generic muffins and fruit are nothing to write home about.

The native Panamanian women who run the hotel for the American owner are very friendly and helpful. Overall, not a terrible option for Bocas, but I think you can find something more appealing for the same money.

Room Tip: Like I mentioned: upstairs rooms are more attractive.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Aransas, Texas
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 18, 2013

A retired friend and I decided to go Spanish school in Panama late May,2013. Bocas del Toro was our choice ,but we did not want to go a chain hotel or one that was a high-rise 200 room monstrosity. When we both did our research independently on hotel choice, we found that we had chosen Hotelito del Mar. Sally, the owner, is awesome and was very accomodating with special requests. We loved this 7 room bed and breakfast and loved the location to all shops, restaurants, water taxis, etc... We had a beautiful room with a huge balcony. The premises are also very inviting... gorgeous plants, wall murals. Can't wait to go back !!!!

Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013 via mobile

Sally and her staff are very welcoming. This was a nice hotel, with a good sized, clean room, in a very convenient location in
Bocas. Sally was helpful in giving us recommendations. The breakfast is simple -but nice to be included. Would definitely stay here again!

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Winter Haven, Florida
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2013

We enjoyed our stay at the Hotelito Del Mar in Bocas. Sally and her staff made us feel welcomed. The rooms are spacious and close to everything. Sally gave us suggestions of what to do during the day it was raining. She also suggested places to eat while in Bocas. The staff spoke very good English and were also helpful.

Room Tip: All the rooms are good.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

My daughter and I spent two nights at Hotelito Del Mar end of June 2013. No issues with our reservation or finding the hotel. Sally made us feel welcome and the room was clean, good a/c, hot shower. WIFI worked well throughout our stay. Breakfast consisted of homemade muffins and fresh fruit, coffee/tea. The fruit and muffins were both good. My wife and I are coming back late in 2013 and will stay here again.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Los Angeles, California
Top Contributor
174 reviews 174 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 68 cities Reviews in 68 cities
132 helpful votes 132 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

We were impressed from the get-go when Sally Ramirez, the owner, promptly returned our many emails each and every time, giving us the information requested. The hotel is lovely, with a beautiful underwater mural painted on its face and on the first-floor doors. It's an easy walk from the water taxi and centrally located to everything. It's not right on the water but across the street from the buildings on the water. Sally and her staff were very warm and friendly. Our room (the double on the second floor was enormous with two double beds, an expansive balcony with a peekaboo view of the water, and a equally huge bathroom). The balcony included a hammock and Adirondack furniture. AC, wifi and TV all worked flawlessly. Along with our own room was a shared living area on the second floor between the two upstairs rooms, so you felt like you had a nice big apartment. We could store food in the fridge in the upstairs kitchen, but it was not available to cook food. Sally's staff baked muffins there every evening for the following morning and the smell was heavenly. Each morning, we were greeted with strong coffee (my coffee snob husband opted to drink her coffee than make his own despite having lugged three pounds of coffee from home in our luggage), homemade blueberry or chocolate chip muffins and fresh fruit. The hotel guests congregated in the breakfast area and we made friends with and went on a tour with three other guests. We also had Sally's two parrots and two cats to keep us company, making it feel more like visiting someone's home, than a hotel. Good value and we would definitely stay here again if in the area. Definitely idea for those not up for the bare-bones hostel-backpack experience but not wanting to pay top dollar for an over-priced hotel right on the water or with an on-site restaurant. Lilli's with her "killing me mon" hot sauce is right across the street.

Room Tip: We stayed in room six, which is an upstairs bedroom with two double beds, a very large bathroom and...
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  • Stayed June 2013, 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotelito Del Mar

Address: Calle Primera y Calle 2a, Bocas Town, Isla Colon, Panama
Location: Panama > Bocas del Toro Province > Isla Colon > Bocas Town
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 14 Hotels in Bocas Town
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This small hotel is conveniently located in Bocas del Toro, Isla Colon, Bocas del Toro Province, Panama. Each of our spacious 7 rooms has cable TV, wireless internet access, A/C and hot water, continental breakfast. They are extremely well insulated and quiet. Groups are welcome. We accept all major credit cards. All inquiries are welcomed and answered promptly. Join us for a unique holiday on a tropical Carribean flavored island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotelito Del Mar Bocas Del Toro, Panama - Bocas Town

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