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“Best 3 day ever!!!”

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Playa Tortuga Hotel & Beach Resort
Ranked #10 of 20 Hotels in Isla Colon
Panama City, Panama
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Best 3 day ever!!!”
Reviewed October 14, 2013

I went to Hotel Playa Tortuga from September 13 to the 15th for my 7 year anniversary.we arrived on friday at 7:25am and check in was at 3:00pm, since our room was ready they did not hesitate on giving us the keys and this was amazing since we where a little tired because of the flight. The hotel was really nice the food was delicious and the cocktails where amazing. We took a tour on saturday to 3 different islands for 25.00 dollars each which was a great deal. The staff was really friendly and Antony the chef was amazing he prepared my romantic dinner and let me say that was the best lobster i ever ate in my life. I would go back a hundred times if possible! loved it!

Room Tip: rooms on the third floor have a better view!!
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Zugelis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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717 reviews from our community

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  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
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  • Value
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San Francisco, California
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed September 30, 2013

My friend and I stayed at Playa Tortuga the first two nights in Bocas and wouldn't go back. It was low season so maybe the staff just didn't care. The room keys constantly wouldn't work and the staff wasn't friendly. We asked for 2 bottles of water for us, which they give out to guests and the guy had one bottle left in the cooler so he gave that to me and shrugged. Any other pricey hotel would walk over the bar and get another bottle.
Dinner service was terrible and slow EVERY time. We waited an hour for our food once and complained and they didn't bother comping anything or even apologizing! The food in Bocas Town is 100% better too.
We also wanted to enjoy the nightlife in Bocas Town but found it difficult to get back to the hotel as taxi service stops around midnight or 1am I believe. Thank heavens I speak Spanish because we had to negotiate $40 from a guy who didn't really want to take us on his boat.
Also, be wary that since the hotel is "expensive" for Bocas (even though we got a priceline rate) you will get charged extra for any transportation because people will think you have lots of money...we called it the "Playa Tortuga Rate".
The area around wasn't great for swimming because the water was murky. The only thing nice about this hotel was the pool, but there's a free pool further up the road at Playa Bluff.
This place is definitely not worth the money.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Rachel W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Isla Colon hotels

Mendoza, Argentina
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed September 25, 2013

Stayed 3 days with 3 kids, paid 735 dollars for a standard room in the first floor with breakfast and dinner , next to the kids room, kids loved the big swimming pools, kayaks, staff was ok, some of them friendly some of them not, but overall it was a nice stay.

Breakgfat was fair, dinner when they served buffet was awful but luckliyl do not why the last 2 nights they did not served buffet and we could order from the menu, we took ours at the bohio restaurant, excellent choice!!!!! if not buffet is not acceptable and beeak fast is ok.

cons? too far away for me and kids , always paying 6 dollars going to town adn 6 coming from, the bus thay have there operates at veryu strange times at 10 am 2pm 7pm and 10 pm, not ok for us, the tours they offer you is not worth it the difference, but if you go with children and do not want to go to a bed and breakfast or a hostel this is a nice 3.5 star hotel little far away but also on the beach what is great.

If I go again to Bocas I would go to a nice bed and breakfast for 80 dollars a night and buy breakfast and dinner for 25 dollars per person in the center and not paid that much, rooms are ok and mattresses first class, no flat lcd , few channels on tv

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank alejandro817
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Mateo, California
Level 5 Contributor
67 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed September 17, 2013

To be fair, Playa Tortuga might be great for families with kids that don't react to sand fleas... The hotel is a resort, slightly out of place in Bocas. The pool is impressive but the staff is less than helpful if you want to order by the pool. The rooms smell of mold and mildew with the air conditioning. A smell that stays in your clothes even after you've packed and left.. It is plenty big, but not quite clean around the edges... just enough to get by. They lost power so no ac and both days of our stay had no water for a time, so no flushing toilets.. It's way out of town so everything is by taxi. There was no snorkeling equipment to use on excursions like most other places provide. Food was adequate, no more. Seriously, watch out for the sand fleas, we got eaten up until we realized they were all over the grassy areas, along with the sand... and they ITCH for a long time...

Room Tip: I'd say on a higher floor as the hallways are dark and dreary on the ground floor. Every room fa...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank njwoodster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed September 4, 2013 via mobile

A great hotel just on the beach. While it's a bit out I town it's only a 5 minute bike ride away ( recommended) and the staff is great. They have an amazing resturaunt on the beach with the most beautiful sunsets

  • Stayed October 2012
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank Eliranreuven
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
45 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed August 17, 2013

We were told that we had to book a junior suite ( more expensive) as hotel was full but now that we are here we can see empty rooms all over the hotel! I realize Panama 5 star level of service is not up to North American standards but the staff here are really just plain unfriendly, unhelpful,and seem bothered if you ask them to do something for you (asked them to call tour company that failed to pick us up on the dock one morning after we waited an hour)...that is Gambit Tours and another story all together. . Have had one nice waitress, reception staff and all others seem annoyed at having to provide service. We see people getting serve drinks by the pool and 5 days here we were not asked once if we would like anything. The worst was getting overcharged for a tiny bit of laundry (mostly my daughters tiny clothes) that cost $35 for maybe a quarter of a bag! I was not impressed so reception took items away and came back and charged me more!! $36.50! I worked in hospitality industry for a long time and was taught that if a customer is unhappy make things better for them not worse! These people just don't get it. I am a world traveller and laid back and I think the issue here is when you pay alot of money for a place, you expect good service. We have been backpacking Costa Rica before this so thought this place would be a good way to end our holiday but staff here have not made this to be the place I expected it to be. That said, location on a beach and pool is great! Take away the issues with staff and hotel is nice. Probably wouldnt come back though...too costly to be treated rudely. So come for the pool and location and view, but not for 5 star service.

Room Tip: Junior suite 312 has a magnificent view and is a very nice room...not a 5star room in terms of mint...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank 154913Love2travel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GLENWOOD
Level 5 Contributor
90 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
Reviewed August 8, 2013

Playa Tortuga is the biggest hotel on Isla Colon and the only corporate run hotel in the islands. The building is not bad (some things are a little goofy) The staff seems completely dis-interested and a little "bossy" there's no training so the staff appears to be clueless and angry.

My daughter went down there for breakfast and was bossed around with "you can't sit there" "you can't take coffee from that coffee maker" "you can't take a whole table if you're just one person" rules rules rules. A real disconnect with who pays their salary.

There are literally hundreds of great beautiful small cozy hotels in Bocas del Toro. Find "anywhere else" to stay, but If you want to stay in a "Motel" like atmosphere with unfriendly staff this is the place for you

Room Tip: Get another hotel
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Tom88039
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Playa Tortuga Hotel & Beach Resort

Property: Playa Tortuga Hotel & Beach Resort
Address: Isla Colon, Panama
Location: Panama > Bocas del Toro Province > Isla Colon
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Isla Colon
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Isla Colon
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Playa Tortuga Hotel & Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 117
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tropical Caribbean Beach Resort on the crystal clear waters of Bocas del Toro, Panama.Playa Tortuga offers 117 stylish room accommodations, each with a balcony and spectacular ocean view. Guests may choose from standard rooms, junior suites and large grand suites, all offering a contemporary décor, modern amenities and a soothing tropical atmosphere.Relax in the hotel’s sea view pool, or sunbathe in our water mirrors while enjoying your favorite beverage from the nearby bar area. Little ones will enjoy the children’s pool. Other modern and convenient amenities include free WIFI and a state of the art Fitness Center featuring a private massage area. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Playa Tortuga Hotel And Beach Resort
Playa Tortuga Hotel & Beach Isla Colon
Playa Tortuga Resort Beach
Playa Tortuga Hotel & Beach Resort Panama/Bocas Del Toro - Isla Colon

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