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“Great option in Bocas” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Tropical Suites Hotel

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Tropical Suites Hotel
Ranked #1 of 12 Hotels in Bocas Town
Certificate of Excellence
São Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Level Contributor
40 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Great option in Bocas”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 17, 2014

It is a great hotel... safe, clean, neat very close to restaurants, pubs, shops. The staff is really helpful and polite. The rooms are large and clean. It is very close to everything you may need in Bocas. I highly reccomend it.

Room Tip: All of them are great but if you can, get one with ocean view.
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Carla F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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477 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (100)
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Belize
Level Contributor
33 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 30, 2014

Tropical Suites was the highlight of Bocas Town. The employees all bent over backwards to please... all we had to do was ask. Probably the most helpful and unexpected was with travel arrangements by the manager... around the island, hotels, travel to David and Panama City. The only thing we found wrong with the room was the refrigerator... it worked great and was clean but was well worn.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Bill W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Palm Springs, California
Level Contributor
48 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 26, 2014

My family and I stayed for 4 nites in the summer. We opted for the city views and it was always fun to watch. After seeing the ocean in every other place we stayed we found it interesting and not noisy on the city side. Very clean rooms. nicely decorated and helpful staff. Very nice owners. I would highly recommend this hotel especially for first timers to Bocas as its location is great and no need for cars Highly recommended.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 320Trisha320
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
17 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2014

First I want to cover Bocas del Toro and Panama City.

It can be a complicated place to get in and out (and around) of and has many choices for activities and accommodations.

Typically it is best to fly a major airline into Panama City, Panama - Tocumen Intl. (PTY), then drive across town in a taxi ($40) to Albrook Airport (PAC) and fly Panama Air to Bocas Town (BOC).

Panama City sits right on the Canal on the Pacific side of Panama. It is an amazing town much more modern than you can imagine and the infrastructure is amazing, Subways, Buses, Private Buses, Multiple Airports. Panama City downtown is very modern with great hotels, casinos, and every international bank.

Having travelled extensively around Panama, mostly in West Side like David, I was looking forward to Bocas del Toro.

Getting to Bocas was very smooth on Air Panama, we looked at all of the main Islands: Colon, Cristobal, Pastores, Popa, and Cayo de Agua and of course Bocas town. Even though we were told by all to stay at Red Frog Beach we decided to to stay in Bocas Town.

The airport is five minutes from Bocas Town and it is a classic emerging Central American City. Almost every building is built along the gorgeous waterfront facing the Pacific. I would recommend staying on the Red Frog or Popa.

I hope this helps.

To the Review:

The Great:

1. Tropical Suites was located right off the main strip in a very raw, relatively undeveloped town.
There are several hotels all of varying qualities and lots of retail stores (no chains) with great shopping.

2. Bocas town is where all of the activities take place for the most part. It is packed with surfers, divers, and sun seekers. Plus there are lots of great restaurants and bars.

3. The Back of Tropical Suites overlooks the Pacific and all of the gorgeous Islands and vistas in the bay.

4. We read a lot of reviews and selected Tropical Suites which demanded payment upfront no AMEX before we booked, we were then planning to leave and spend a few days on some other islands and head to Costa Rica.

THE GOOD:

1. Close to good restaurants, huge rooms.

2. The Hotel is relatively new and has a nice buildout.

3. Otherwise not much.

THE BAD:

1. Where to begin...

2. Tropical Suites asked us to pay up front and we accommodated. They said we had to pay upfront due to the holiday/demand and if we canceled we had to pay half. So, we booked a waterfront room for the trip after reading a lot of reviews, and paid upfront.

3. As we went to reserve our room, we entered our credit card and it said AMEX was not accepted only VISA or Mastercard. As we went to finish out booking we printed out our page, but reentered our Credit Card Info.We have a printout that shows waterfront, but oddly the email they sent us had city view. I tried to call and received nothing back. Then called my credit card to cancel it. Finally, I was told it would be worked out at the hotel.

3. We arrived at the hotel to horrible service and an extremely cold greeting by the receptionist.

4. We were then told where our room was and went up to a spacious, but city view room,

5. We went down to the receptionist (the only person working who was on her cellphone speaking to her friend, and ignored us), but she said all the ocean view rooms were sold out and they wouldn't have anything for the length of our stay.

6. We were hungry so we decided to eat and come back and try and work out the situation.

7. While eating at a fantastic restaurant a few buildings down, we found out the entire story on the Hotel. It was owned by a great, service oriented owner, and then given to his daughter or relative as a wedding present. The new owners were from California and basically let the property and service deteriorate significantly. The restaurant manager told us it was THE place to stay, but they had heard lots of complaints.

8. After returning to the hotel the receptionist said it wasn't her problem and the manager would be there in the morning.

9. The "City View Room" was horrible and loud. it faced the city, and all of the noise from the Bocas Town partiers and bars.

10. The next day I went to speak to the manager again and once again, no one responded. We were tired of the noise, bad service, and a who cares attitude. Plus reserving a room and having a print out, but then paying and getting another room "bait and switch" was unconscionable. We decided to check out. The Receptionist didn't care, and said we would be charged no matter what. So, after being lied to and manipulated we decided to leave.

11. Suddenly a new receptionist said oh we have lots of water front rooms we can move you right now. So, it went from, bait and switch, to apathy, to rude, to lying, to suddenly now that we are literally walking out with our bags there are rooms.

It was not only disappointing, but sad. They are liars here, and don't care about the patrons, and we heard it from others in Bocas Town. They ruined the first 2 days of our trip and now magically had rooms after they were "fully booked for the duration of our stay".

What was even worse was NO manager and higher level tried to help us, but didn't mind charging us $2,000 for a room we didn't book. I never got an apology or the chance to show someone our paperwork.

This place is untrustworthy, dishonorable, and still charged us.

If I could give them Zero Circles I would. THEY DO NOT CARE.

Do not stay here.

Actually stay on Red Frog Beach all of my friends went there and had a great time and loved their hotels.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
15 Thank vivrelemonde
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
tropicalsuites, Owner at Tropical Suites Hotel, responded to this review, July 31, 2014
Hello Vivrelemonde,

Thank you very much for staying with us at Tropical Suites and taking the time to leave a review of the town and hotel.

It seems there may have been some confusion about where you were staying with regards to the comment about a change in ownership or our daughter running the hotel. We have owned and operated the hotel for years and are still currently the owner/operator. The manager has been with us for almost 5 years. I think you may be referring to a different hotel, in the area, that had a similar story as the one you heard.

My utmost apologies for any inconvenience or trouble that you had a Tropical Suites, I have been unable to contact you, so please contact me directly at tropicalsuites@gmail.com I am one of the owners (we are owned by two couples) and we will definitely stand behind any charge made by Tropical Suites and be happy to refund anything that was wrongly charged. Additionally I would like to hear more about your unpleasentries so that they are never duplicated for a future guest.

As for the unfriendly service, this is not the first report about a receptionist not being friendly in December of 2013, we had to make a few changes and the issue was resolved. I am very disappointed to hear about your experience and assure you it is not the norm at Tropical Suites and we will do all we can to find out what the problem was and correct any further issues.

Thank you again and I look forward to hearing from you.

All my best,

Chip
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carlsbad, California
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 5, 2014

We stayed at Tropical Suites last year and loved it so we stayed there this year during our Bocas del Toro visit. This is the place to stay at in Isla Colon. The ocean view suites are worth the price. This time around I got to experience the hotel's great service. We experienced a blackout which I guess is not exactly uncommon there. The staff gave us candles and fortunately the electricity came back at 8pm. On my check out day, I decided at 10am to move ahead my 5pm flight back to Panama City. The only earlier flight available was at 11am. I give the staff member who helped me (I wish I remembered her name) all the credit in getting us on that flight. She had the Panama Air rep hold the seats for us and called God knows how many taxi companies to get one to pick us up quickly.Given the slow pace of Bocas I was just shocked at how she hustled to make it happen. You could tell that she sincerely wanted to help us. I now know that if there were some kind of emergency while we were there, the staff would take good care of us. And that is good to know in a place where the electricity is bound to go out.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank greetingsfromdenver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 29, 2014

The airconditioning in room 7 did not work properly. As such, we got little sleep. We complained to the front desk. They did nothing to fix the AC but just argued that it was working fine. It did not work fine and nothing was done to correct the matter.

Room Tip: The AC in room 6 worked fine.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Bill C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
tropicalsuites, Owner at Tropical Suites Hotel, responded to this review, April 6, 2014
Hello Bill C,

We appreciate your feedback and would like to express our sincere apologies for the inconvenience that you experienced. It is unacceptable this matter was not promptly rectified. Our staff strive to deliver the highest service standards and an exceptional guest experience. This matter was discussed with the appropriate staff member and we are confident such a situation will not reoccur. We are also undergoing a check of all rooms to ensure all air conditioners are functioning properly.

Sincerely,

The Tropical Suites Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stamford, Connecticut
Level Contributor
67 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 28, 2014

We just returned from 6 nights at this hotel with our 12 and 14 year old children. While expensive by Bocas standards, it wasn't by US standards! We had the top floor Executive Suite which included 2 bedrooms and a big kitchen and living room. Best of all, a huge terrace overlooks the water but none of the bedrooms overlook the street so it was quiet - except for a party boat docked right below us. The boat featured drunken adults making spectacles of themselves (jumping clothed into the water from the boat's roof, dancing with cigs and beers in hand) etc. It was not really a problem for us since the boat left the dock before we wanted to go to sleep anyway. I would have enjoyed watching the partiers more if I had not been doing it with our impressionable kids! Front desk people couldn't have been nicer or more helpful. We loved the 3 breakfast choices and most often paid the $2/each to order the night before and had our breakfast delivered overlooking the water on our terrace. The location of the hotel is perfect. The room is surprisingly decorated in black and red leather - not exactly what you would expect. We would recommend this place to anyone!

Room Tip: We heard several guests complain about street noise. try to get a room over the water and not on the...
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank NIcoleLarry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tropical Suites Hotel

Property: Tropical Suites Hotel
Address: First Street, Bocas Town, Isla Colon, Panama
Phone Number:
Location: Panama > Bocas del Toro Province > Isla Colon > Bocas Town
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Bocas Town
#1 Best Value Hotel in Bocas Town
#3 Family Hotel in Bocas Town
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Tropical Suites Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tropical Suites is a modern oceanfront hotel located in the heart of Bocas del Toro. Resting on a tranquil Caribbean shoreline, the property is close to many over the water restaurants, shops and attractions. The hotel's comfortable and spacious suites feature a panoramic view of the Caribbean waters or​ ​the island's ​tropical ​landscape.​ Amenities include private balconies, air conditioning, 24 hour front desk and water access from​ ​the hotel's private dock​. Nearby attractions include beaches, snorkeling, dolphin watching, zip-lining, diving and surfing. Tours and activities may be arranged through the hotel's front reception. Guests may choose to include breakfast with their room rate. The property is a 15 minute walk or short taxi ride from the Bocas Town island airport. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tropical Hotel Bocas Town
Tropical Suites Hotel Bocas Del Toro, Panama - Bocas Town

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