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“Scenic Location and Views With Modern Conveniences”

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Gamboa Rainforest Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Gamboa
Reviewed February 18, 2013

We found the Gamboa Rainforest Resort to be a fine location from which to explore the Gatun Lake and Chagres River area. The resort itself is well designed, with good sized rooms, air conditioning, and a hammock on the balcony. It is a rather large resort with a large pool and extensive grounds to explore by the river.

Birdwatching on the grounds is actually very good--I saw a toucan and many beautifully colored birds and the many birders staying there seemed very excited by what they were seeing every day, even from their rooms. Early and later in the day are the best times to see the many birds.

We went kayaking on Gatun Lake via Panama Pete's Adventure Travel (and even briefly on the nearby Panama Canal--a safe out of the shipping lanes, though) and would highly recommend taking a kayak tour of the lake/river area from the marina at the resort. You can easily see monkeys and many beautiful birds from water level as you paddle around the lake and up to the nearby rainforest. The marina also includes a very good restaurant, where we had the best buffet lunch of our stay there.

We also hiked the nearby Plantation Trail (you need a guide to take you there) and we saw some beautiful rainforest, birds, sloths, a coati, and other wildlife there

A few other pluses for this property: there is a butterfly house, orchid nursery, and a reptile house on the grounds and the main restaurant serves a daily dinner buffet with a different culinary theme very night. The daily breakfast buffet is complete with an omelet and waffle station, and a wide variety of fruits, cereals and hot entrees, breads and yogurts. Service in the main restaurant was very attentive and the staff overall is well trained and friendly. My wife also had a massage at the spa which was very good.

A few cons: No WIFI in the rooms (only in the main lobby and bar). Access to the butterfly house, orchid nursery and reptile house are by appointment only, although we tagged along on the many tours being conducted through there by private companies throughout the afternoon, which was a bit awkward, but these areas are worth seeing, so don't be shy in arranging a time to see them or in blending in to a few tour groups, which only requires a minimum of tact--feel free to tip the tour guides!

Room Tip: Rooms in the 200 floor at the end farthest away from the lobby are very nice, seem to be a newer, or...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank WellTraveled3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetzel M, Guest Relations Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 23, 2013

Thank you for your wonderful remarks, which I have shared with staff, gives us a pleasure to know that you loved the visit to our hotel and enjoy all the nature.
We hope to see you again in Panama.
Regards

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845 - 851 of 1,721 reviews

Reviewed February 18, 2013

We had a large room, with a river view. The beds were comfortable and the bathroom large. The lobby atrium and pool area were beautiful. That is the end of the positive remarks I can make about this resort. The room was extremely musty/mildewy, and the mold in the shower had obviously not been addressed in years. The unaddressed mold goes together with the poor housekeeping. If the floors were mopped at all, it was probably a once over in the middle of the floor with the dirty water we saw in the housekeepers' buckets. Small things that had fallen on the floor remained there unless we picked them up. One day we had to call the front desk when our room had not been made up at 5 PM. Each day they would take our towels and replace them with one less than we started with. I can write a whole other essay on the poor service and restaurant food. This hotel is used by many tour groups, and the management doesn't seem to be terribly interested in customer satifaction. Even though they were sold out 2 of the nights that we were there, they were understaffed or had staff that they must have trained in the morning. The buffet ran out of many food items very early in the evening and then again for the morning buffet. Considering that the dinner (and lunch buffet) cost $25 and they knew that they would have a large crowd, this seemed inexcusable. Also, they only had free wi-fi in the lobby unless you wanted to pay over $16 per day to use it in your room. There are lots of nice places to stay in Panama. This was not one of them.

Room Tip: River view was nice.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank mxalpert
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetzel M, Guest Relations Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 19, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to provide your feedback regarding our hotel. I am certainly disappointed that your stay was not all that it could have been.
I would like to apologize on behalf of the hotel and its team for your stay. All your comments are very valuable for us, and will be taking the right corrective actions, and avoid from happening again.
Once again please do accept my apologies and i hope to see you again.
Sincerely

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Reviewed February 12, 2013

We spent 2 nights here in Jan, 2013. Each room has a balcony with a table and chairs, overlooking the river. Just beautiful! The room was very spacious and the bathroom was huge. The pool area is gorgeous and a wonderful place to relax. They are well organized, arrange all kinds of tours for guests, or you can just walk and relax at the pool. We took the Monkey Island boat tour, which was lots of fun. And took the aerial tram to the top of the mountain--the views are gorgeous from the top! The highlight for us was seeing 4 toucans on a tree just outside our balcony! Worth the trip.

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the third or fourth floor for better views.
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank gagardener
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetzel M, Guest Relations Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 19, 2013

Thank you for your feedback and kind remarks. We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay, and look forward to welcoming you back.

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Reviewed February 9, 2013

Well, maybe not suffer, but...I agree with many of the complaints contained in the other reviews. Our group leader insisted that we be given rooms different than what we were first assigned in order to avoid some of the issues already highlighted. Free wifi only in the lobby (no a/c), musty room. Did have a beautiful PM entertainment around the pool with a buffet. The show was well done and featured local entertainers and the gorgeous costumes which altogether cost over $25,000. A lovely site bit the hotel needs help with how to better serve international clientele who know a great hotel when they see it. This one is certainly not great but we weren't as turned off as some others.

Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
2  Thank Conmassey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetzel M, Guest Relations Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 11, 2013

Thank you very much for your time to write your comments, are very helpful to improve the service of our hotel. We hope to see you again in Panama.
Regards

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Reviewed February 4, 2013

While on a Caravan Tour we stayed 2 nights & 3 days at this resort.It is in the beautiful rainforest & upon arrival you immediately are impressed with the lobby & the view of the river . All the rooms are spacious & well appointed with large bathrooms. The balconies have hammocks for relaxing afternoon siestas. The pool area is quite large with many chairs & a waterfall pool although it was a bit of a walk to the pool which we didn't mind after partaking of the appetizing food.
The dining room was lovely again with the amazing view & the food was very good. We found the service to be quite adequate.
The rooms do not have wifi but the lobby did & it was easy enough to obtain.
It would be easy enough to stay at this resort & do many different day trips including travelling into Panama City.
We would highly recommend this spot.

Room Tip: All of the rooms on the right hand side of the lobby had amzing views. The room doors were wooden wi...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Mary Jane B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetzel M, Public Relations Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 6, 2013

Thank you very much for your time to write your comments.
I appreciate your comments and we are glad to have met your expectations when visiting our hotel. I personally congratulate my colleagues for their hard work. I hope to see you again in Panama. Regards

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Reviewed February 1, 2013

This resort has seen better days and the service is mediocre. The pool area is pretty with adequate room for guests but needs painting and renovating. There is a swim up bar which is fun but with few drink options for kids. We took two tours; one of the Gatun River and the Tram tour. The guides on the Gatun tour were not very knowledgeable and when we did spot wildlife, were unable to turn the boat in a direction where we could see it or get pictures. We were left at the dock because the bus was full and no one ever came back to get us. We finally walked up the road and a bus which had stopped at the restaurant picked us up. The tram tour was fun and the guides were enthusiastic. We did see beautiful views of the area from the tram and the top of the platform. My husband and son went on a fishing trip and actually did catch fish, \ however, their boat ran out of gas and they had to be to towed out of the canal by the police. A dangerous adventure. The food at the buffet was descent and reasonably priced but if you sat on the veranda, watch out for mosquitos, as well as at the pool.
One time here was enough for our family and I would probably not recommend it.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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4  Thank Trish T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetzel M, Guest Relations Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 2, 2013

Thanks for your time to write your remarks. Our apologies for all the inconveniences experienced during your stay. We are continuously working with all departments to improve our staff service, in order to provide a consistent high level of service that all guests deserve.
Sincerely

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Reviewed February 1, 2013

Stayed here 2 nights in Jan 2013 as part of Caravan.com tour package. This hotel was located close by the Panama Canal, even though you could not see the Canal, no big deal, close by for activites made it great. The hotel view is breathtaking. It is located on the Chagres river. Grounds are very clean, and room is fine. Staff very helpful and polite. I would recommend this hotel. When I booked the tour last year, we were going to be at a Raddison Hotel nearby, but when I saw the Raddison Hotel and the location of It, I was much happier staying at the Gamboa Rainforest Resort.

Room Tip: the hotel has rooms above the lobby, but most of them are in about 5 different 4 story locations nex...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank luvtwotvl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetzel M, Guest Relations Manager at Gamboa Rainforest Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 2, 2013

Thank you for sharing your experience during your stay at the hotel. We appreciate your comments and suggestions. Hope we get the pleasure to have you again with us in a near future.
Sincerely

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Gamboa Rainforest Resort

Address: Goethals Blvd. | Soberania National Park, Gamboa 7338, Panama
Location: Panama > Colon Province > Gamboa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Gamboa
Price Range: $121 - $285 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Gamboa Rainforest Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 166
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Deep in the heart of the Panamanian rainforest lies the completely unique Gamboa Rainforest Resort. This magnificent destination rests where the scenic Chagres River meets the Panama Canal and is the only resort property in the area. Few places on earth offer such an amazing natural experience while providing an unsurpassed level of luxury. Escape the noise and hectic pace of everyday life and surround yourself with the tranquility of the mystical Soberania National Forest. Here, just a short 30-minute ride from Panama City, on 340 acres overlooking the stunning Panama Canal, you can commune with nature in a pristine environment where explorers and pirates once tread. Our Panama Tours offer an exhilarating variety of jungle adventures such as an aerial tram, guided boat tours, fishing expeditions, and much more. Our tours are designed to show you wildlife in its natural setting amidst the colorful splendor of the jungle flora. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gamboa Rainforest Hotel Gamboa
Gamboa Rain Forest Resort

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