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“Royal Decameron rates high on our return list”

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Royal Decameron Beach Resort, Golf & Casino
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Farallon
Dauphin, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Royal Decameron rates high on our return list”
Reviewed January 3, 2013

Our experience was very good, right from our rep meeting us at the airport/transfers down to the arrival of our luggage in our room was very smooth and timely. The resort is very clean, the food choices and different restaurants was very good, the food was fresh and good variety daily. We could get coffee by 6:00a.m. and breakfast by 7:00. We found the morning cooks to be very patient with some of the tempermental guests- no reason for the rude behavior of some guests.
The weather was great (hot), plenty of things to do. Did the partial canal transit where you actually go on a boat through the locks- fantastic. Went parasailing with Captain Jim and had the best experience. The beach is great, the pools large and uncrowded. The only thing would have been nicer is the distance from a town to go shopping. We did take a local bus to Peninome for 2.00 each way about half hour ride, a fun ride. At one point I counted twenty people in a 12 passenger van. Fun to people watch. The resort did a really good Narnia presentation on stage one night. The people work very hard to entertain the guests and much appreciated. Our only regret was we had to leave on New Year's Eve and miss the gala event which was being prepared for all to enjoy. Next year we will most likely extend our stay to take this one in. Hats of to the management and staff at the resort for the work they do.

Room Tip: Stay beachfront if you spend most of your time on the beach, and most dining areas are on the lower...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
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6 Thank TheBarbes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Montreal
Level Contributor
21 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2013

Do your research if you’re not familiar with tropical regions. If you smoke you have to go outside and even outside can't be under any attached roofing. The hotel itself is huge. If you hate walking and stairs then this might not be the place for you. The beach has lots of shells and there are a lot of bars and restaurants to choose from for everyone else. This is a golf resort that also caters to families, so there’s a wide range of ages and languages spoken. The attitude of the local people working make up for a lot of other issues!

Hotel food can be good, or horrible, or just ill-conceived, but, even with my sensitive stomach, I always found something to eat. Fruits were usually fresh and so was most of the rest of what they had. Sometimes they were closed early but once I knew it was no problem.

The staff was a lot of fun is almost all locals! Most were very friendly and helpful but lacked training for the many different jobs they are asked to do, though they have no problem trying to get what you want if you make it easy and are NICE. The weather is hot and you’ll be passing by the bars a lot for fresh frozen juices, water or beer or whatever… mostly everyone was pretty good but I was looking for Luis, Ronaldo, or Gilda during the day and at night it’s easy to see which bartender is best because his tip jar is always full.

If you want to start learning Spanish you’ll really enjoy it. A free dictionary app (AnTek) on my phone helped immensely (especially in the night club when they can't hear you anyways) and it’s not hard to find someone who’s at least bilingual.

The hotel overall could be much better with some attention to standards and details – Seeing the staff walking around in surgical masks creeped me out, but it's still generally cleaner than a lot of other places. If I can get a good deal I’d definitely come back for an extended period to explore the country more.

Off the resort it's safe to walk along the beach or on the street during the DAY. I felt it to be safer than parts NDG or Verdun at night - and I wouldn’t walk around those . There’s police patrolling the beach and the streets all the time on atv’s and foot. They were friendly and most even waved and some even said hello - the exact opposite of what I’m used to at home!

Casino Fiesta has an ATM and guards and cops watching you all the time so it’s safe to get cash out there. A bucket full of Panamas is 4 dollars at the bar here and they have live shows and a lot of nice bottles we don’t deserve in Quebec, so it’s a good place for alchohol tastings.

Woody's bar was covered in Canadian memorabilia and signatures. Uzziel is a good for making sure you’re never dry and it’s the only place we found where you can get fresh, cold beer in bottles on the beach. At between one and two bucks a pop it’s a good place to try the local brands and taste their ingredients.
The poutine would have been edible had they cooked our fries but my friend and I were only able to pick out a few - I had a bite the night before and it was better - the cheese is real and squeaky and the sauce is decent. Potatoes seemed to be hand peeled and cut to order everywhere I went around here, so expect a bit of a wait.
We also bought a tour from them which I brings into the rainforest for a hike and a slight ghost-town. They start with the mud bath which should have been at the end, and also the zoo was disturbing for some people. The guide spoke no English, either and we were asking for ATV tours when we were sold this. I didn’t look around but I'm sure there are better guided tours available or rent a car and download a free offline GPS for your phone. I used ‘Navigator’ and the free OSM is the only one that had a map of Panama. Maverick is another good app for explorers.

PS: NICE to service staff means being polite with a smile and some cash and not leaving disgusting messes for them to clean up, or any other medieval-type behaviour.
VIAGRA: You get them from Luis the bartender. You get 2 at a time. It's what he calls my morning iced coffees – no missing Tim’s. He's was working up by the pool bar in front of the 24 building -good spot to start the day watching iguanas and other wildlife living here.

Room Tip: They take complaints well and will accomodate when they can. Obviously by the kiddie pools would be...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank maxfrommontreal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barrie, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2013

We felt our time was well spent in Panama staying at the Royal Decameron. The staff were pleasant (not many smiles but they earn approx $400/mth with only two days off a month, so I wouldn't be smiling either) and could speak fairly good english. The weather was superb. It was sunny and 30+ degrees Celsius every day with minimal rain. There was a good variety of food at eight specialty restaurants and of course a few buffets. The food was plentiful but somewhat bland (it's a family resort with many children and seniors) but much better than I expected and I wouldn't expect there would be someone staying there who would go hungry. The rooms were large and clean and well air conditioned, but there was nothing extravagant and no wow factors within the accommodations. That was left for the exotic beach areas.
We were glad we thought to bring containers to refill water and wished we thought to bring insulated coffee mugs. They served expresso sized coffee early in the am and we are used to a Tim Horton's sized cup of coffee. I also wished I had thought to bring hair conditioner and nicer soap for the shower...next time.
If any improvements could be made, we would think they could provide free wifi to guests and also include the costs of a room safe in the price. It's just annoying to have to pay for these things in 2013. The canadian dollar exchange is insulting at the hotel. We currently enjoy us/canada dollar at par and the resort only offers .65 on the canadian dollar. If you spend a day at the beach you will likely be bitten by fire ants so bring the bug spray! Also don't expect that if you need a wake up call you will get it and there are no clocks in the room. If you leave for an excursion the departure times may change so it's important to keep checking.
Overall, there were only minor inconveniences and major reasons to enjoy time at this resort. We would recommend it and plan to return.

Room Tip: If you have trouble walking you may want to book an ocean front (not ocean view). This is a big res...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Morag D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Abbotsford,BC
Level Contributor
73 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 103 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

I am surprised to see at the time of this writing that this is rated the #1 out of 4 hotels in Farallon. I can't even imagine what the other 3 hotels look like. We have been to many all inclusive resorts but this was our first trip to Panama. The country has much to offer however the Royal Decameron is a 3 star at best. The hotel caters to locals,the staff (including reception desk) speak little to no English. For those of you that have been to Cuba, the food at the Decameron is comparable. My husband got food poisoning on the 4th day. The a la carte restaurants are all "open air" and serve food of the same quality as the buffets. The locals can buy a "day pass" for this resort so it gets over crowded during the day. It's all about how many people they can shuffle through the resort. You feel like cattle being herded through.Many of the bar's do not serve alcohol until after 5pm. The narrow walkways are shared with multiple passing mini vans which can get frustrating as you are constantly having to step off the path to let them pass. There is not much close by to do outside the resort. You can take the public transit right out front of the lobby to the highway and go to Penonome (a bit of shopping) or Valle Anton (about an hour away and worth the time off the resort) There you will find hot springs,craft market,zoo,hiking,waterfalls and horse back riding. The tour desk was not helpful whatsoever in directing us to the public transit,instead telling us that it "doesn't exist". Just do your research before you go and you'll be fine. It's only $2 per person to go to Valle Anton instead of the $90 that the hotel tour costs. I can't imagine why anyone would pay that. The town is small and we walked everywhere on foot with 2 kids,no problem. The hotel is built on a hill and IMO the Superior Ocean view rooms are worth the upgrade (Buildings 41-49). Wifi is $15 for 24 consecutive hours. There is a small craft market a short walk away from the hotel. There, you can buy a phone card for $6 and use one of the public phones. It gave us over 2 hours of talk time. As many have said, Woody's is a great escape from the nasty hotel food and it is Canadian owned. We paid $800 pp all in,good enough deal for an all inclusive from BC Canada to Panama however, we will never go back to this resort.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Rachele777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Farallon hotels

Mississauga, Canada
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

We arrived in Panama from Toronto on November 26, 2012. Our bus ride was indeed 2hrs from the resort, but the most enjoyable 2 hours, with our driver stopping along the way at a restaurant/bar for refreshments and a well deserved leg stretching break.
The Royal deCameron Resort is beautiful, great food, very clean rooms, the staff was very polite and accomodating, although there are some that do not speak English, there was someone else to help with anything should you require it.
Sure, there is no smoking, just like home, you cant smoke in the restaurants or lobby area, or anywhere else you would not be permitted to smoke in our great city's.
The city tour was wonderful, althought recommended summer travel should start in Jan, or Feb. we were at the end of the "rainy" season, but all in all it was a spectacular visit.

Woody's Bar is just down the beach and a wonderful place to sit by the beach and relax with a nice cool Coor's Light, or highball. Monique, the owner is wonderful and the place is a great stop for any Canadian. Highly recommended, great owners, great staff.

I will write another review on the tours, and beatiful amazing places we experienced on our trip.

Room Tip: Get Beach front, there is alot of walking up & down stair, I mean it when I say ALOT OF STAIRS...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank lynV_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed December 30, 2012

We didn't have any real complaints like seen on trip advisor. It is a big resort and lots of walking. The grounds are clean and manicured and there is a peacock roaming around. We quite enjoyed laying on the beach and walking the beach in either direction. The staff don't speak much English but we were prepared for this and managed quite well. The food was average. We tired of it after a few dyas but walked down to Woody's one day for a meal. We didn't bother with Wifi as it was very expensive at the hotel. The bus trip from the city out to the resort was disappointing so we booked Panama Roadrunner the trip back and they took us on a very nice tour of the city before dropping us off at the airport. Would we return to the resort? Absolutely. We loved the country, the weather and seeing the city.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Sophie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mississauga
Level Contributor
30 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
Reviewed December 29, 2012

We travel to all inclusive resorts several times each year. We have been to this property about 5X. Here are the peeves that serve to put this property well down on our list.

Safety deposit box @ $45 cash for two weeks.
(Second) room key deposit of $15.
Wifi @ $16/day and Internet @ $7 / 30 minutes
Extra charge for in-room refrigerators
No table service in any bar
Main bar in Lobby 1 serves coffee (only) until 5 pm.
No English or French language news channel on the TV
Sharing all the walkways with hotel service vehicles.

The front desk has scooped all your available cash upon arrival. You respond accordingly when it comes to tipping staff.

Room Tip: Extra cost ocean-side rooms have the whole resort peeking at you. We prefer top of hill with ocean v...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank John A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Royal Decameron Beach Resort, Golf & Casino

Property: Royal Decameron Beach Resort, Golf & Casino
Address: Avenida principal Farallon, Km.115, Farallon, Rio Hato, Panama
Phone Number:
Location: Panama > Cocle Province > Rio Hato > Farallon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Farallon
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Royal Decameron Beach Resort, Golf & Casino 3*
Number of rooms: 1170
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Royal Decameron Golf, Beach Resort & Villas Panama is an all inclusive hotel located about 2 kilometers of white sandy beach in Farallon, Panama. The hotel is located on the Pacific coast, close to many tourist attractions. Also, the city of Panama and the Tocumen International Airport (PTY) are located 120 miles away. The Royal Decameron in Panama hotel offers 852 guestrooms in low-rise buildings and 370 rooms Villas. Each room is equipped with air conditioning, satellite TV, closet, safe (local charge), direct dial telephone (with deposit cash at the reception) and a private bathroom with shower and hair dryer. Also have a minibar as part of the all inclusive plan and the villas are located on the golf course. Royal Decameron Golf, Beach Resort & Villas Panama offers eight pools for adults three wading pools, three hot tubs, a casino, a golf course with 18 holes and a full spa. This beach hotel also offers a variety of organized activities on land and water for the whole family, and two convention centers for business travelers. The Royal Decameron Golf, Beach Resort has 11 bars, a nightclub and 10 restaurants ranging from traditional to the more exotic. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Royal Decameron Beach Resort, Golf Hotel Farallon
Royal Decameron Beach Resort, Golf And Casino
Royal Decameron Beach Resort Panama
Royal Decameron Beach Hotel
Royal Decameron Panama
Hotel Royal Decameron Beach
Royal Decameron Costa Blanca Hotel
Royal Decameron Beach Resort, Golf & Casino Panama/Farallon
Royal Decameron Resort Panama

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