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“Lovely setting up the hill on Bastimentos” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Free Spirit Inn

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Free Spirit Inn
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Old Bank, Isla Bastimentos 00190, Panama   |  
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Corrales, New Mexico
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
“Lovely setting up the hill on Bastimentos”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2013

Free Spirit Inn has a lovely setting up the hill on Bastimentos.
Calvin has built 2 units with a veranda, and a common dining area below, along with lovely well kept grounds – a meditation hut, meeting table, & reading room. The décor is woods with thatched roof which fits in beautifully with the verdant surroundings. Nice touches are added with artwork, pillows, masks, etc from Calvins travels. Ensuite bathroom has a shower with mosaic pebble floor, and stone?sink. Every inch of the property has been thought out by Calvin. Shells placed here and there, art pieces etc. The free welcome drink of coconut juice is very refreshing.
Suites have a very comfortable bed with a nice wood frame for a quiet and peaceful nights sleep. No air-conditioning but, the fans were fine to keep us cool.
Breakfast is fresh juice, a healthy granola, yogurt, bananas, teas, and regular coffee – but if you want a special Panamanian organic one its $2 extra. Also you can order an omelette or pancakes if you want for $6-8.

Calvin is a very welcoming and generous host with explaining the area, local customs/culture, restaurant and activity recommendations (hike up the hill through the jungle to the cafe and then on to Wizard Beach). The communal kitchen area below the suites (with refrigerator, heating element, sink) is perfect for fixing a drink, light meal etc and relaxing and exchanging experiences, ideas and stories. If you want to eat in and fix light fare in the basic kitchen- get groceries in Bocas Town at Super Gourmet.

Perfectly priced for Bastimentos – and not a hostel, but not a high priced all-inclusive resort, so a great alternative.

Cavin gets the Best Host award on our entire trip!

Room Tip: We liked the Sun Suite with a queen bed on the main floor and a twin up in the loft like area.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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38 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 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 (6)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cleveland, Tennessee
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2013

My wife and I were just there about 3 days ago and spent 3 wonderful days in the peaceful vibe of Calvin and his Free Spirit Inn. One would be hard pressed to find as attentive and genuine a host as Calvin. He has created a great space overlooking the town with two cozy, tastefully decorated rooms that have a sweeping view through the jungle down to the carribbean. He serves you a nice breakfast with fresh juice, fruit, granola, and coffee, but if you want to upgrade to a three egg omelet the cost is minimal and the quality is very good.

The lady who helps him, her name slips my mind, is gracious and sweet and fluent in both English and Spanish. You can book snorkling tours right there for a good price, or a trip to the bat cave. You even get a meditation hut, a grill if you want to prepare your own perfect Red Snapper, and a lounge area to hang out. If you happen to be in need of some soul healing, no problem, Calvin will slide his stereo over to his window and waft you a little Nina Simone to cure what ills.

It\s a great place to be in a beautiful location, but what will stay with you the longest is the genuine hospitality and general good vibe that Calvin goes the extra mile to give. You will not be disappointed! Oh! I almost forgot the beds! The beds are superb.

Donnie and Katia Harris

  • Stayed March 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

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Sooke, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2013

My husband i spent several nights with Calvin at his uniquely designed inn. We met Calvin on a bus ride to Almirante and were thrilled to have found such a peaceful, lovely place to stay with such interesting and attentive host. Free Spirit Inn has two upper floors rooms, painted in gentle colours, with lofts and roomy, beautifully decorated bed and bath and immaculately clean. Calvin has spared nothing to makes these places super comfortable and uniquely his own. Calvin spent time with us answering all our questions about the island, tours and places to explore - and we set up a terrific snorkeling tour with Uwe - a passionate protector of the local marine areas. He was so knowledgeable and educated us as well as ensuring we experienced several snorkeling locations with different sea life. Continental Breakfast was great - you could custom order hot items for a small fee. We walked across the island to Wizard Beach - a wild, wave expanse of golden sand - well worth the walk but make sure you have good shoes to avoid the ants!
I highly recommend this amazing place to enjoy a unique and special island, away from the tourist hub of Boca town. We truly enjoyed spending time with Calvin - an intriguing and fascinating soul.

Room Tip: both rooms have great view
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  • Stayed February 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2013

My friend and I just left the island and we were very sad to go. Calvin was a wonderful host, offering us a fresh coconut when we arrived, making sure we knew where and how everything worked, and gave us so many helpful suggestions on things to do and see around the islands. The space itself was lovely. It was an oasis on Bastimentos. The rooms were very clean and perfectly decorated. We were treated to fresh squeezed juice in the morning and a nice little breakfast, including gourmet coffee. I felt very safe and secure at all times. Calvin even brought a guide to the house to offer private snorkeling and bat cave tours, which were definitely the highlights of our trip. Ask for Oovie (or Uvie) - he is a trip! 5 stars and I can't wait for Calvin to visit us!

Room Tip: The yellow room has a full downstairs and a single upstairs.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

I recently stayed here for a week with my friend. We had such an amazing time we didn't want to leave. The place itself is stunning. Calvin has built a great get away that is out of the way without being in the middle of nowhere. The view from the deck was also a real bonus, you can see all the way down to the sea. This makes for a real peaceful setting. The garden is really spacious, lots of places to lie in the sun or read a book in the shade. The bedroom/bathroom were clean, comfortable and beautifully decorated. There is also a meditation hut where you can chill out in or meditate. This was my favourite place in Basementos. Calvin is a great guy too and a super host. He is a real generous and warm guy. He also has great local knowledge of places to visit and eat out. Of all the place i stayed in Bocas this was my favourite.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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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Additional Information about Free Spirit Inn

Address: Old Bank, Isla Bastimentos 00190, Panama
Phone Number:
Location: Panama > Bocas del Toro Province > Isla Bastimentos
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 14 B&Bs / Inns in Isla Bastimentos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our New Eco Friendly Inn offers a relaxed and lazy getaway with a splash of tropical adventure with local Caribbean music in the background with a beautiful island bay view, plus local restaurant ,bars with music and food stores two minutes away. Free Spirit Inn has comfortable private suites, with dreamy beds, private bathrooms with hot showers and stone massage floors. Each suite has a balcony view of the Caribbean and other islands in the bay, and a decorated sleeping loft for 1 to 2 extra guests.There is a outdoor seating area and hammock to enjoy quiet reflection, a garden area , outdoor open air shower ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Free Spirit Inn Panama/Isla Bastimentos, Bocas Del Toro

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