Plaza Paitilla Inn
Travel Blogs from Panama City
The travels continue! A few expats back in Bocas recommended we stay in Casco Viejo while visiting Panama City. This is the "old town" that has been renovated, minutes outside of the city, and apparently it's the hip place to be. Casco Viejo's brick paved streets were filled with locals and tourists alike sampling little pubs, coffee shops, retail stores, and street vendors. We visited an elegant wine bar to listen to a bossa nova band. Next we peaked into ...
... speakers are the ones I have to really push to use it. Especially Alan and Fergus. LOL I just keep telling them I don't understand English until they speak only Spanish! :) Alysa and Eduardo talk all the time to eachother in Spanish which is fun to hear.
Each of the lock doors weigh over 700 tons which is about the same as 300 elephants! When they built the canal it took over 60 million pounds to remove 153 million cubic meters of rock and earth and that ...
... it feels good to clean out my pores and my body. I like to "cleanse" myself, then walk home and take a nice cold shower. Third, intramural sports here are super fun! I'm playing soccer (technically futsal, which is the indoor version) and flag football. Both are fun, not too serious, and great workouts. We had our first flag football practice this Saturday and it poured down rain. I was loving it. :) I'm excited for the next ...
... wet hair, the late night meant he had to have a sleep in before he was allowed to fly.
I have to admit as I boarded SS Tuira II I was a little excited, although the boat was only about 120 feet, was floating in fresh water and wasn't even grey. Maybe this is how those survey sailors feel and why they must regale us with endless stories of surviving the challenges of Cape Leveque, which as it turns out is now a 5 star resort, rather than don anti-flash and get on ...
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Historical Traveler Reviews Plaza Paitilla Inn Panama City
For Budget Travelers
The Plaza Paitilla offers basic accommodations at a bargain price. My room was clean, the bed was comfortable, and the hot water flowed easily. I was pretty much satisfied with that.
I found prices of most things to be the same in Panama as in the US. This hotel at $49 per night is equivalent to a hotel in the US for $49 per night. If you are not comfortable with budget lodging, you will not be comfortable here.
As for the hotel amenities, I tried only a few.
I tried the restaurant twice. Once I had a cheeseburger and fries for $4 and another time I had a Ceasar Salad with chicken for $8. It was decent food at a decent price.
The hotel business center had four or five Internet terminals at $1.5 for half an hour. This was convenient and easy to use.
The Multicentro mall is a short walk and the prices are no bargain. I would only shop there out of necessity. I picked up a few necessities at the drug store in the mall. There is also a casino in the mall. The casino is small, yet it has lots of games.
The hotel has nice views of the city and the bay. The views are free and I enjoyed them.
Great for the money!
This hotel is nothing to brag about but for $49 it is hard to complain. The property is obviously old - a former Holiday Inn - and at one time it must have been very nice with a dance club named Genesis. The lobby is still nice with a small bar right in the lobby in front of the elevators. There is a restaurant off the lobby that serves a large buffet lunch, a la carte breakfast - didn't try it for dinner. The people at the front desk speak English and are very helpful: mailing postcards, cashing travelers checks ($150 max. per day). There is an information desk in the lobby but when there was a lady there, she was always on the phone. Behind the elevators is a decent business center with several computers you can use for $1.15 per half hour. Next to the business center a table was set up for booking tours in and outside of Panama City. The brochures were in Spanish and the woman booking the tours didn't speak English but I'm sure someone at the front desk would translate. We did a lot of walking from the hotel and felt comfortable but taxi's are cheap and the drivers very helpful.
What a Dump!!!
I was vacationing in Panama with my family. When we got to the hotel our room wasn't ready, at the lobby, they told us to wait 15 minutes......2 hours later our room wasn't ready yet.
Finally we got our room.....bathroom was dirty, no toilet paper, and it wasn't what I had ask for 4 months before when I made the reservations.
To make it worst that night after all the argument with the staff about the conditions of the room, somebody try to get into our room; this person had the keys to our room--try to come in and said that she was looking for "something" that "supposedly" she had left in that room the night before she had stay there....yeah right. Lucky for us we were in the room, we coud have come back to our room and all of our belongings gone.
My husband and me went to the lobby to speak to the manager and that was no help, a waste of time....the staff had no idea of anything. There was nothing available in town that night.
The following morning we left.....now I know never to stay there again.
Can't beat the view for the price!!
This hotel was incredible for the $$. This was a stopover for me and I wish that I had spent my other nights here when I first arrived in Panama. I spent several nights in the famed Caesar Park hotel and pd $130 per night. It was not worth the extra $$. This hotel has very large rooms w/exceptional views (floor to ceiling windows) and is in a very good location looking out onto Balboa Ave. The hotel has recently done some renovations and they were evident but were not spectacular. Nevertheless, I will def stay here when I return!!
Good price, great view
Stayed in March for 3 days on Business. For $49 price can't be beat.
Resturant over priced, but great fresh fruit in the morning. Only 2 blocks from new mall with Casino. LOcated in Patilla district, this is mostly residential high rise condos. Great view of water if you can get the right room otherwise view of condos. Rooms seemed to be updated and were clean. Old Holiday Inn but great value. Will be returning next month.
Okay for the Price
Some book reviews I've read said this hotel had been renovated. I'm not sure when. The lobby area is pleasant enough although very dated. The elevators seem to be the newest thing in the hotel. Once you arrive to your floor, the walls are painted in what can only be described as industrial colors, with some very strange furniture that looks as though it was scavenged or picked up from the Salvation Army.
The room itself was clean, I will say that. The bed was a bit firm but comfortable. The rooms do have floor to ceiling windows on one wall, a bit disconcerting when my one-year old kept leaning against the glass - since the glass is right at the edge of the building it was the only thing keeping her from the ground 14 stories below and although I knew my fear was mostly in my head it was still unnerving. The air conditioner in the room is the old loud in-the-window type, although it worked well enough. The television reception was horrible, and although I'm always one to say you don't travel to watch TV, if you're going to offer an amenity it should work.
A thing my husband and I found odd, they didn't offer facecloths or washcloths, only bath towels and hand towels. At first we thought they had forgotten to supply us with any but when I asked for some I was told they don't have them and indeed we never got any during our stay, nor did I see any on the housekeeping cart. The only in-room personal amenities were shampoo, soap and a shower cap, so bring lotion, conditioner and anything else you might want (we usually do anyhow.)
The restaurant downstairs serves quite decent food - we did breakfast there on a few mornings and I ordered lunch one or two times and it was actually quite good. They do have room service for which there is no additional service charge, a nice touch. The prices are also great, as they are all over Panama.
We never used the pool although we checked out the area. It was clean enough with some serviceable lounge chairs. The pool area looks out onto the bay which sounds nice but unfortunately there is quite a bit of garbage piling up there and that is what you see (and smell) first.
The hotel seemed to be doing renovations and there was a lot of hammering and banging during the day, annoying when my daughter was trying to nap. I recognise they've got to do it some time, but didn't understand why the housekeeping staff seemed to congregate in the halls talking loudly back and forth on walkie-talkies as late as 10 in the evening. They did seem to be working but it seemed a bit late for all that noise.
Finally, we had the misfortune of staying next to a party of people who seemed very interested in, shall we say, ladies of the evening. There was a lot of back and forth of persons of dubious nature, lots of loud knocking on doors and negotiating of services. This too was in the evening, and while it is not the hotel's fault, the fact that this type of thing was going on was a turnoff, I think at a higher-class of hotel it certainly would have been more discreet!
All in all the hotel was clean, the staff was friendly and helpful and the cost was good. We had a promotional rate, which I think they run frequently, of around $49 a night which included a car rental! So for that amount I can't expect much and could have indeed gotten less. But this isn't the type of place I'm accustomed to staying at and would prefer to pay more for more services. If you are on a budget though and don't mind the possibility of running into some questionable characters, this hotel will do fine. They have valet service, bellmen, and 24-hour security, which is all great. And the hotel is very clean, just a bit run down around the edges. The staff is helpful and friendly and you'll be treated well.
We loved this hotel. We were on a budget and at $50, this was the best deal we could find. We stayed there 3 times, though not consecutively because we were going off to Bocas del Toro, San Blas and Boquete. In fact, we ended up staying in Panama City a couple extra days and the Plaza Paitilla was full and the places we stayed at weren't nearly as nice.
As mentioned in other posts, the rooms have a great view of the city. The beds are nice, soft sheets, cable TV, big outside pool and the service was very helpful. What a luxury for us after our trip of roughing it out in San Blas!
I have only one critical comment. We were charged $150 for a bag of laundry. That was the first and last time we ever do that again.
There certainly are a lot of nicer hotels for Panama City for a lot more money, but this hotel really is a gem and you won't be surrounded by other Americans.
Not bad value
Stayed two nights at the Plaza Paitilla Inn at the beginning of February - I agree with previous reports that the hotel is quite funky - the rooms are good, clean and have all the facilities for a bargain rate of $49.50 per night. The swimming pool area needs some attention as do some of the common areas but in general you get very good value for money. The location is convenient to the shopping centre but there seem to be no shops nearby to get any alcoholic drinks which means you rely on the (expensive) minibar or drinks from the bar. After a long day sightseeing in the heat it is nice to relax with a cold beer - but paying $2 when you know they are $0.5 elsewhere is annoying.
If you have a low budget
For $45 a night this hotel is perfect. The rooms are clean, the view is "amazing", it's location is perfect and the service is fine. If you like a funky, economic and clean place to stay...this is just what you're looking for.
A pleasant stay
For US 45 per night, we were a little worried, but a friend have had told us about the place. Itīs the former Holiday Inn. Donīt expect luxury, but you find everything than a tourist needs. My wife and my 5 old year child had a good 2004 holly week memory. Friendly staff; clean and comfortable average rooms with fridge, shower and bath tub, fine towels, closet, tv cable, superb city view,well located. We could find drugstores, supermarkets, malls, restaurants, shops,etc, etc withing walking distance, cheap internet room. Nice lobby in marble and new elevators. Beware of the smoking rooms, they smell; we asked for a change and we got it inmediatly. We could choose it. US 6 for a huge buffet breakfast.
They must work in the pool area, very old.
If they keep the prices we will be back for shure.