Prior to staying at the Waldorf, I read all the reviews posted on TripAdvisor since it opened last Spring 2013. Recognizing that this is a brand new hotel, and with the brand name, Waldorf Astoria, most guests would expect a top notch facility and treatment. After staying at the Waldorf for six nights this August, I tend to agree with the many previous posted reviews, both positive and negative.
In this regard, the hotel staff were always extremely helpful and polite, but their staff is in dire need of training. Housekeeping and in-room food service were always inconsistent. One never knew what mistake they were to going make each day. Some examples of their poor training: forgetting to drop off daily water bottles or toiletries, replacing dirty drinking glasses, housekeeping slamming doors while cleaning adjacent rooms, forgetting food items ordered for in-room food service, etc. Good grief, housekeeping and room service were not consistent by any means of the imagination. Albeit somewhat annoying, the staff immediately corrected it when asked. I personally found this to be a bit odd for having the brand name, "Waldorf Astoria".
One of the first things I noticed to be a bit strange when I first entered my room, no luggage racks or stands. What the heck? Where is one suppose to set their luggage? However, staff immediately brought two luggage stands to my room when requested. Hey Waldorf, buy some luggage stands! (I personally think the bellhop was embarrassed by the situation).
The room look and decor was excellent. The two raised bathroom sinks were pretty cool and the shower was well designed. Missing was a TV in the bathroom for those that enjoy that feature. The bed and pillows were extremely comfy as mentioned in prior guest postings. See previously posted photos of their rooms.
As mentioned in prior reviews, the hotel lobby has a very modern contemporary look about it. Of course, the hotel is basically brand new. But the lobby doesn't seem to have much activity, meaning it doesn't give the appearance of a "happening place".
Some comments on the hotel location and its surroundings in the neighborhood: boring and somewhat ugly area. Why Waldorf didn't build on the empty lot in front of it is beyond reason.
The hotel is landlocked in this old neighborhood. In fact, some of the staff opined that the current hotel location was a "test location". There are several nice restaurants nearby also mentioned in prior reviews. FYI: taxi fare from Tucomen International Airport to the Waldorf was $28 and $35 for the return trip. The hotel is very helpful in getting you either a private taxi or yellow cab. (Note: Panama's Yellow Cabs do not use meters, you negotiate the fare when entering the cab). In summary, I would say the hotel itself is a great facility, great looking, but not at all in an exciting location.
That being said, I felt the room cost was an absolute bargain for what one is getting. Very cheap indeed, even if the internet access was an additional $12 per day. No complaints on the room cost. I stayed on the 16th floor with a view of ocean (bay actually). The ocean view is between two residential buildings, resulting in a somewhat constrained view.
Hint: Allow yourself three hours when visiting the Miraflora Locks. You will want to watch one of the big ships pass through the locks.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Waldorf Astoria Panama is conveniently located on Calle Uruguay, a vibrant street known for its entertainment and restaurants, and steps away from the financial banking center. This new hotel jewel features 248 guestrooms, suites and luxury residences as well as an array of culinary options to serve the most exquisite palates. Cozy meeting rooms can accommodate an intimate business gathering or a memorable social event. A spacious and comforting area awaits you at the Waldorf Astoria Spa, an oasis of relaxation adjacent to a large exercise area by Life Fitness and a shimmering pool where you will enjoy the beautiful sun rays. Your guests will certainly enjoy inviting facilities with sophisticated furnishings and an ample number of restaurants and activities within the hotel, as well as experience the sincerest definition of personalized service while living the True Waldorf Service, which aims to offer guests luxury attention during a memorable stay in Panama. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Waldorf Astoria Panama Panama City