Buena Vida Language School
Buena Vida Language School
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Calle Estudiante, Pedasi 0749 Panama
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  • Lana S
    Vermillion, South Dakota2 contributions
    How can one not just love the authentic setting and great teaching!
    I spent 2 weeks at Buena Vida Language School and loved my experience so much that I continued my Spanish lessons via Skype when I returned home. The school is small with individual attention and located in an authentic setting. I have been to other Spanish language schools in Central America and Buena Vida is by far the absolute best. Pedasi is a safe, quaint town with a charm of its own and the people are very friendly. In addition, I was provided opportunities for volunteering, so that I could utilize my Spanish. I highly recommend Buena Vida Language School, because the teachers are challenging, volunteer opportunities are available and the setting is delightful with numerous outdoor tropical activities.
    Traveled solo
    Written October 28, 2011
  • Gino N
    South Portland, Maine3 contributions
    Great School and Perfect Way to Learn about Panama
    I enrolled in this school for five days to update and refresh some very rusty, beginner spanish. My instructor, Dania, was terrific. We spent about half the time in general conversation on a range of topics.....great way to learn about the culture and social issues of Pedasi and Panama (not to mention inside scoops on restaurants and places to see). The other half of the time was spent with more formal lessons. The school has the best and most comprehensible approach and framework for learning spanish verbs that I have ever seen. These guys are real educators. In all, I would recommend this school as a great way to quickly immerse yourself in the local scene as well as meet some very interesting and nice people.
    Traveled solo
    Written April 23, 2015
  • Edmontongurl
    Edmonton, Canada13 contributions
    If You Want to Live in Panama, You Should Learn Spanish
    Buena Vida is located in the heart of Pedasi, Los Santos, Panama and is an easy walk or bike ride from anywhere in town. My husband and I moved to Pedasi over a year ago and a few months into our adventure decided that it was time to “bite the bullet” and learn proper Spanish rather than trying to get by with our “muddle through Spanglish". We’ve enjoyed our lessons immensely, well; as much as a couple of fifty something people can without our brains exploding. Truly, we have been so fortunate to have amazingly patient teachers during our time with Buena Vida. I also can’t say enough about the high level of instruction and encouragement that we have received. The environment is relaxed, casual and fun but doesn’t take away from the importance of the lessons. When I look back at where we started and where we are now it is amazing. We will continue with our lessons because we find we are getting fantastic value for our dollars spent and as retirees that means a great deal. Thank you Ingrid and Dania for tailoring our classes to our needs; through you we have learned not only how not to embarrass ourselves when asking for chicken breasts and how to conjugate a verb; but so much about our new home, its traditions and its people. I may be a little biased but Buena Vida is located in one of the prettiest little folkloric towns in Panama. Come for the beaches, the surf, the fishing and the sun and spend some time at Buena Vida learning more than how to ask for another cerveza. You won't regret it.
    Traveled as a couple
    Written July 3, 2013
These reviews are the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor checks reviews for fraud.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

5.0
39 reviews
Excellent
38
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Karen H
Craig, AK19 contributions
Feb 2016 • Couples
Any visitor to Pedasi needs to take advantage of this great resource. We were in Pedasi for four months last winter. The classes were so well organized and tailored to my level that I never felt lost or overwhelmed. It was so exciting that Spanish was finally making sense, poco a poco, as Dania said. In addition, she always started her sessions with preguntas, and especially in the beginning, I came with lots of them every day. So the classes not only helped with the language, they helped me understand the people and culture of Panama.

Dania and Mitzi will be the key to making your time in Pedasi wonderful. And believe me, you will never dread going to class! Don't pass up this opportunity to improve your language skills and get to know The real Panama at the same time.
Written June 3, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Teresa M
Calgary, Canada29 contributions
Jul 2014 • Couples
My husband and I decided to contact Ingrid for a week of intensive Spanish classes. Best decision we made. Ingrid set us each up with a teacher as we were at different levels. I worked with Dania and my husband worked with Edison both of which were excellent, making it a great learning experience for us both. They taught us a lot of information including great phrases to help with everyday living. We were tired by the end of the week but it was all well worth it, thanks to Ingrid, Dania and Edison. Tú necesitas ir a Pedasi para estudiar español con Buena Vida escula.
Written August 1, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Carol W
Seattle, United States39 contributions
Nov 2016 • Solo
I studied here for three weeks, private classes, 3 hours a day with Dania. Dania bought the school recently from the previous owner, Ingrid. Dania is very caring, and conscientious and a great teacher. Dania went beyond being a teacher, and helped me when I fell by picking me up from the doctor. She gave me continual advise for many things, and basically worked really hard to make sure my trip, and my classes went well for me. She also arranged a homestay which worked out well. I am a middle aged woman traveling alone, and I felt extremely safe and welcomed in Pedasi. Additionally, most people in Pedasi do not feel comfortable speaking English, so it is a great place to come to learn and practice Spanish, especially compared to Bocas (I visited there, and it is full of tourists and gringos - not a great place to learn Spanish). The town is nice and clean, close to several beaches and the people were lovely. I really enjoyed my time here!
Written January 5, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thank you Carol!
Written July 17, 2017
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

401KathleenC
Fleetwood,PA9 contributions
Jan 2015 • Couples
I studied Spanish for two weeks at the Buena Vida Language School in Pedasi, Panama. Group classes are offered, but because I speak Spanish and wanted to concentrate on particular aspects of the language I chose individual study-one to one with an instructor. I enjoyed the experience and it met my all expectations for learning.
My teacher Dania is excellent. Through her explanations and examples I came to understand parts of grammar that had previously always eluded me. I genuinely looked forward to my daily two hour long classes. Another teacher, Mitzy, observed and contributed to my class as well, as she prepared to join the school’s teaching staff. That was a bonus for me, and I enjoyed it. Getting to know Dania and Mitzy was one of the highlights of my two months in Panama.
Buena Vida Language School has a pleasant relaxed atmosphere. I met many other students at the school from young children to retirees. Ingrid, the creator and director of Buena Vida, is warm and welcoming. She cares about her students and the local community. The teachers are local residents- educated and trained to teach, and there are free classes for young Panamanians to learn English.
I strongly recommend the Buena Vida Language School to individuals who are beginners in the language as well as those who have studied in the past and would like to refresh their skills.
Written March 12, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

April H
Santa Fe, Panama6 contributions
Apr 2014 • Business
We moved to Pedasi, Panama for three months in order to attend the Buena Vida Spanish Immersion School. We attended class three times a week for two hours at a time. The class was perfectly planned and progressed in such a way that we felt we were learning a lot, but at a slow enough pace to be able to absorb all of the materials. The two of us have completely different learning styles and Dania our professora met both of our needs perfectly. Both Dania and Ingrid, the school founder, constantly went above and beyond to help us settle into our new life in Panama; everything from helping us buy a truck, finding fresh vegetables, figuring out Panamanian cell phones to finding a new place to live when the time came. Dania even came shopping with us to explain all of the new Panamanian foods and how to prepare them. We have been given all of the tools we need to be able to communicate in our new home.
Written July 9, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Ronen S
Los Angeles, CA20 contributions
Feb 2014
We just moved to Panama for 7 months and thought we should start with getting the language down first. This school is great. They really cater to your needs and make sure you are comfortable where you are at. Ingrid sure knows how to run a school and all the teachers seem great but we love Dania. I would like to find the one person that dared to give the school an avrrage review and smack them. We love our host family as well. Viela, the mother of the family, rocks! Her breakfasts are amazing with huge portions of fruit and traditional Panamanian cuisine. This whole experience has been a perfect introduction to Panamanian culture, cuisine, and all the warmth that this country has to offer. Gracias por todo!
Written February 3, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

skipholmes
San Miguel de Allende, Mexico31 contributions
Jul 2013 • Solo
well i have to say that Ingrid and dania have combined to put together a beautiful learning enviroment.this was quite possibly the best $15 i have spent on my trip.....muy bueno ladies...chris from seattle
Written July 9, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Claire A
Leeds, England, United Kingdom5 contributions
May 2016 • Solo
The School itself is really nice - with hammocks, places to work a nice sofa, free tea or coffee, air-con and internet. Dania and my teacher Mitzy are so lovely they make you feel so comfortable when you come - they always engage in conversation and are willing to help you with anything you need. I got a lot of practice in my classes. The home-stay was well organised and the people that I was staying with were also really welcoming I felt really relaxed in both the school and the home-stay. Overall I have to give the experience 10/10. Thank you so much Dani and Mitzy I really enjoyed my time here with you both!

Claire
Written May 20, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

DeniseKLove
Oakland, CA4 contributions
Apr 2016 • Couples
Two jubilados (retirees) arrived on the bus from Panama City via Las Tablas and a shuttle to Pedasi .... tired and somewhat reticent about learning Spanish at our ages (60 and 66). We were met by instructor/owner Dania and Mitsy, who would be our main instructor. They welcomed us and drove us to our home for the next three weeks. We had decided to jump into this adventure by living with a local family who spoke no English and have 20 hours per week in-class learning for three weeks. Mitsy and Dania put together our 3-week course. It was intense: daily homework (tarea), active class sessions with at least one hour of oral pronunciation and vocabulary, and of course, grammar. The pace was perfecto! Mitsy was patient and used numerous teaching styles to find what worked best for us. We could hardly believe how much we learned and were able to speak. Buena Vida was an investment in time and money well spent. If you have the opportunity to learn practical language skills in Panama, travel to Pedasi and Buena Vida. You may be amazed to find you can teach an an old dog new tricks. Hablamos espanol! Muchas gracias Buena Vida.
Written May 4, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

NateGoesWhere
Reno, NV5 contributions
Aug 2015 • Solo
Ingrid, the owner and director of the school, was very helpful and truly cared about my learning experience. My instructor, Mitzy, was great! She was very patient with me and did an excellent job of assessing my skill level. When I return to Pedasi, one of my first stops will be here to sign up for more lessons!
Written September 4, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Buena Vida Language School (Pedasi) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go