What I like most about the Coconut Lodge is that it kept my daughter and I safe in a foreign country. I've always wanted to see Panama and felt the country would be safe for us to travel there but I can see where our holiday would have been unpleasant--or worse--without the Coconut Lodge and the people there. The Lodge is situated in an upscale neighborhood just outside of Panama City. We met one of the neighbors. He was a doctor. His wife was a dentist. The Lodge is surrounded by a high, impenetrable fence. And at night, an electric fence for security. We always felt safe and slept well. The neighborhood is quiet and peaceful. For some reason, stinging bugs and mosquitoes were either not present--or were not a problem.
I think in many ways, the Lodge offers 5 to 6-star services, particularly in concierge services. Co-owner Nancy not only schedules tours and simple trips to town with efficiency and her expert business skills (she holds and MBA), she deftly anticipates your needs and saves you time, money and hassle.
If I go there again I will wait until we arrive and then schedule all trips and tours with Nancy. Her ability to find the best, knowledgeable vendors for site-seeing, or hire someone she knows to escort you on a private tour are World-Class. Coconut Lodge concierge services exceeded those I recently received at the Waldorf Astoria in Orlando. She takes the services seriously and finds the highest quality guided tours for her clients. She knows in so doing--the Lodge puts its own reputation under scrutiny.
Our tours to the Embera Indian Village and the Rainforest Discovery Center were beyond FANTASTIC!! Once-in--lifetime experiences. For a third tour we scheduled on our own, Nancy typed out expert directions and called the corporate office to ensure the driver would find the location for our 5:00 a.m. pick-up time. That is high, high quality--Ritz-Carlton level.
Food safety is a major concern for those who love to travel to foreign countries. Without mentioning all of the issues associated with food safety, I can tell you we enjoyed nearly all our meals at Coconut Lodge and I am now finding myself craving Mike's gourmet cooking. We were unconcerned about unsafe water or foods--such a relief in a foreign country. We enjoyed fresh guava juice daily, escargot, fresh, high quality fruit each morning, home-smoked bacon, fresh eggs, crepes, and yogurt parfaits; homemade high quality hungarian stew for lunch (once gratis [because they are simply nice and generous and have good manners]). Dinners were three course meals. I could continue for many paragraphs about the meals. Point is--the food was 5-star-level food.
What I want to emphasize is the cheerful accomodation for dietary restrictions and food allergies. My daughter's multiple food allergies were always considered when her meals were served. Always--and with graciousness and with pleasure to help us. Coconut Lodge reaches 6-star-level service with these highly specialized services, i.e., Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons service. And breakfast was included in the price of the lovely rooms. Dinners were available for only $18 per person and lunches--for $10. I call that high quality VALUE.
Honesty is priceless. In haste, I left a large amount of cash on the desk one morning and hadn't realized it until we returned to the room later that day. The room had been cleaned. the bed made, and waste removed. All of my personal items were respectfully untouched. $75 cash left in full view on the edge of the desk remained in the position where it had been left that morning--untouched.
We stayed in Cafe con leche. The room was clean, attractive and we always had enough fluffy towels. All appliances were in full operation. The aircon was efficient. The mini-bar, well stocked. Fine wines were available. One bottle was gratis with the room.
Lovely, well maintained landscaping frames the location. Those beautiful bushes with gorgeous white flowers will stay on my mind. Fountains, four gorgeous white doves and orchids were a delight. The saltwater pool was refreshing, clean and soothing following long days touring this beautiful, globally important country.
Should I return to Panama, Coconut Lodge is the only accomodation I will consider.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.