This hotel, to cut to the chase, is the hotel you go when you want the "Motel 6" version of a hotel in Bocas Town (Bocas del Toro). It is your own room with own bathroom. I also had decent A/C in this tropical environment. Staff was also generally friendly, though spoke Spanish exclusively (so, in other words, know at least basic Spanish and not only English). You might also think of this hotel as your option that is a step above a hostel with its shared rooms and only college kids looking to spend the absolute least amount of money possible. As far as cost, it was on the low end of cost for private rooms in Bocas, matching the very basic room you received (I paid $22/night, I believe). To go lower in price would mean a hostel with not only a shared room but gave up amenities such as A/C.
it is very basic to American hotel standards and somewhat rough around the edges. Bed was comfortable enough and generally clean. Room also offered a television with at least 1-2 English stations. However, concrete walls with lime colored paint and little soundproofing or other decor. My room was near the laundry facilities for the hotel, which caused some noise problems. Room was not huge for anything more than 1-2 people, though had two double beds. Shower was cold water only (not entirely a bad thing in hot, humid Bocas) and there was no actual showerhead, just a pipe with water coming out to shower off. Bathroom was tiled and had otherwise "modern" plumbing.
No food or restaurant option in this hotel/motel. However, options are within steps. Furthermore, the "laidback/rough around the edges" feel of Bocas Town would seem to be somewhat counter to having a restaurant in a hotel. You won't go hungry, whether you want a full service meal (if casual) or will take the chance on Mr. "Meat-on-a-stick" guy (basically selling shish-kabobs) on the main street most nights for $1 per kabob - which were incredibly tasty, by the way.
One advantage is location. Bocas Town is small and completely walkable for just about any hotel. However, Hipocampo is a block off the "main drag" so it's a little quieter, yet only a block off so you're still "near the main drag". It was also within a block of where the water taxis dropped me off from my ride from Almirante, the mainland town I was dropped off from the bus ride from Panama City (though Almirante could not be a more unforgettable town if it were not for its distinction of where you go on the bus to get to Bocas Town).
Don't go in to this hotel with any expectation other than the absolute basics for what we'd think of a hotel room in the US. It's clean and reasonably secure...not a whole lot else.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.