This place is amazing in terms of grounds - the pool is perfect, and there are GREAT, large communal areas, which have been thoughtfully planned to accommodate rainy days, which there are plenty of. It's a great place to relax and have a beer, grab a swim, or just... relax.
It IS out of town, but as long as you know that going in, then you can't really complain. They offer 3 shuttles into town, to I think accommodate their son's school schedule, but then you need to find a ride via taxi or otherwise back there.
This place would be brilliant except for the family that owns it. When we first checked in, they were away for the weekend and we were checked in by some of their friends, who were lovely (as is equally the staff), but we were a bit dismayed when the family actually returned, as they treated guests as a disturbance to their home, rather than people who were paying a little over the odds to stay there. I've never been bothered by reviews of inattentive staff or owners in other places, mainly because they might have a colder feeling, or there is enough distance between guests and owners, but this hostel seemed overrun with an air of intrusion as soon as the owners arrived back. They weren't rude face to face by any sense, but they talked derogatorily about us in our presence, and we almost tangibly felt not welcomed to stay there.
I've slept in thatched huts, in cockroach ridden attics, and on bare floors - I'm not writing this as a pampered princess, and I don't expect to be showered with kisses by accommodation owners, but there is a certain level of hospitality that I would think would be obvious to people in the hospitality industry.
It's a shame, as this place would really be a little paradise, if only you didn't feel like you were being a burden to them to stay there. Simple little changes in attitude could make it so much better. In the end, we came back into town to pay more for less, as we couldn't be asked to deal with them.
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- Also Known As:
- Pukalani Hostal Bocas Del Toro, Panama - Bocas Town