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Traveller rating
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All reviews amazing resort massage at the spa small coffee shop great swimming pool close to the airport minutes from the airport spacious bathroom costa del este highly recommend staying here stayed longer copa airlines pleasure of staying pool service uber ride the general manager perfect hotel concierge desk
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Reviewed 22 April 2018

We just returned from our trip to Panama. We had 2 rooms and stayed 2 nights before heading to Bocas Del Toro and 2 rooms and 1 night on the other side of our trip to Bocas Del Toro.

First off, the property is gorgeous! The lobby, restaurants and rooms were amazing.
Agreed with prior review that there are some growing pains - but those were to be expected.

The staff certainly tried to over compensate for that. Everyone was super friendly from doormen, to reception, concierge, management and wait staff. We were always greeted by all with a smile on their faces.

The biggest challenge we faced were some of the staff (including waitstaff) didn't really speak any English but we got by with google translator - we were in a non-English speaking country after all so that's to be expected.

I would fully expect after a couple more months the training issues would be resolved. It wasn't from lack of anyone's efforts. They even surprised us by delivering to our room cookies and milk for the kids and a fruit platter along with a very nice note.

All staff seemed truly interested in ensuring we had an enjoyable and comfortable stay.

I highly recommend giving the Santa Maria a try and you can't beat how close it it to Tocumen airport!

Room tip: Request pool & golf course facing rooms.
Date of stay: April 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
2  Thank aml1208
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lorena C, Assistant to General Manager at The Santa Maria, a Luxury Collection Hotel & Golf Resort, Panama City, responded to this reviewResponded 9 August 2018

Dear aml1208,

Thank you very much for your comments, they are highly appreciated. We are delighted to read your positive feedback from your recent stays with us, we will be sure to share with our team members.

Thank you for your understanding regarding the language barriers you faced with our staff. We are working to develop their english skills, offering them courses and trainings. Be rest assured that by the next time you visit us, they will have improved!

We look forward to welcoming you again in the near future.

Sincerely yours,

Lorena C.
Assistant to General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 April 2018

My family and I stayed at the Santa Maria for 2 days in March and a further 1 day in April. It is a lovely new hotel based conveniently between the airport and the city. The bedrooms are spacious and comfortable, the bathrooms are very good. It has an excellent, large swimming pool right next to the golf course. The restaurant, bar and pool bar serve great food. The staff are all very friendly and are trying hard to please.

I really wish I could have given this hotel a five star rating, especially as I am very conscious that this will be one of the first genuine reviews on the hotel. However both our stays were a little too stressful due to teething issues with this new hotel. If we were paying a discounted rate I would be more forgiving. However we were paying the full advanced booking rate and at no point did the hotel make any concessions towards us (e.g. a room upgrade, a free meal, a free drink, etc). Given the hotel was virtually empty, that we were paying full rates, that we had numerous issues, and that the staff were in training, it would have seemed like a good move by the hotel to have given something to us. But no, quite the opposite, they tried to charge us for everything and more.

To give a flavour of the issues we encountered in our short stay with the hotel. We had no hot water for almost 24 hours on arrival. It took two complaints to get this fixed. We again had the water turned off on our second stay. Three cold showers in a three night stay is not impressive. Breakfast was a comedy of errors. The staff were trying very hard but they were still in training. So on the first morning, with very slow service, they refused to serve a grapefruit juice with the American breakfast even though they had grapefruit juice and it was on the menu. They would however serve all the other juices. Both mornings they did not have any English breakfast tea in the restaurant. However we did have it in our room, so brought down the teabags ourselves. These types of issues are minor and quite amusing. What wasn't amusing was that on our second stay there was a buffet breakfast. We were told it was included with our room by the waitress. I questioned that because I knew our room rate did not include breakfast. However the waitress assured me that this was included. So we had the buffet and were annoyed to find a $66 charge on our room for the pleasure. I asked reception to remove this which they eventually did after consulting with the restaurant manager.

On our second last day I asked the receptionist if we could check out at 4pm. He said that would be fine and there would be no charge. Given the hotel had virtually no bookings for the next day, I had hoped that would be their response. That evening the receptionist came running up to me as I returned to the hotel from dinner to say that his supervisor had told him that they would have to charge us $85 for the late check out. I later complained to him that I thought they should waive this charge, particularly as we had no hot water for a day on our previous stay a week earlier, so a little give and take wouldn't go amiss. He said he would have to consult his supervisor and get back to me the next day. So we went to bed not knowing whether we would be checking out early or not. The next morning I again contacted reception to find out if we had the later check out. Again the receptionist had to consult her supervisor. She was struggling to get hold of this elusive supervisor but said she could give me until 2pm but only her supervisor could agree to 4pm. This was getting stupid and was wasting our time. Eventually her supervisor agreed to us checking out at 4pm without charge. This whole episode could have been avoided if the original receptionist was allowed to stick with the original agreement. Instead they made me argue and chase to get a small concession out of them. Remember that they offered us nothing for the fact that a five star hotel was booking out rooms with no hot water (and that we had to deal with an engineer in our room at 7am trying to fix it).

As I was getting in the car to leave the hotel, the supervisor (I presume) came up to me to apologise for the issues we had encountered. Whilst I appreciated the apology, it was all a little too late. I completely understand that there are likely to be teething issues with a new hotel, whether it's something not working properly or staff not fully trained. However the hotel needs to acknowledge this and give something back to its (full paying) guests for an inconsistent experience, not a last second apology as they walk out of the door.

I'm sure that The Santa Maria will get lots of five star reviews in the near future. I hope it does well, it is genuinely a lovely place.

Date of stay: March 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank EricPDC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lorena C, Assistant to General Manager at The Santa Maria, a Luxury Collection Hotel & Golf Resort, Panama City, responded to this reviewResponded 18 April 2018

Dear EricPDC

We would like to thank you for choosing to stay with us and for the time you invested in writing a review about the The Santa Maria Hotel on Tripadvisor.

We would also like to take this opportunity to sincerely apologize for the challenges encountered during your recent stay. Rest assured, our key priority is to provide you with a memorable experience during your time at the Santa Maria and we were not able to do so in these two occasions.

We have now been open for two months and have been fixing diligently the different issues a recently opened property
encounters along the way. We have been working hard on training our staff to better serve our valued clients. We greatly appreciate your feedback which will help us improve our service.

Do contact us directly under santamaria@thesantamariahotel.com to further discuss this matter. It would be our pleasure to assist you.

Please do let us know when you are planning a return trip to Panama City as it would be our pleasure to handle your arrangements directly. We would like for you to give us a second chance to show you the kind of service we can deliver as a Luxury Collection Hotel.

Sincerely yours,

Lorena C
Assistant to General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 April 2018 via mobile

What a soothing experience . This new resort with a mestizo decor near Costa del Este is perfect for meetings, relax business, spa , bleasure .
The interior design dine by Watermark brings modern and old panamenian heritage together .
All wood is from the Panama Canal , floors with antique Casco Viejo designs, mascarades from the Carnaval tradition and a fantastic integration of handcrafts in the tital interior design .
Rooms are spacious , overlooking the Golf course , great merting space , boardroom for executive meetings , terrace and pool area, gym and spa.
Main restaurant fantastic food a mix of spanish and panaminian cuisine.

Date of stay: March 2018
Trip type: Travelled on business
2  Thank JACKIEGLOBETRAVELLER
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lorena C, Assistant to General Manager at The Santa Maria, a Luxury Collection Hotel & Golf Resort, Panama City, responded to this reviewResponded 18 April 2018

Dear JACKIEGLOBETRAVELLER,

Thank you for the time you invested in writing a review about The Santa Maria Hotel on Tripadvisor.

Thank you very much for your amazing comments about our facilities, the activities, the food and the service offered by our dedicated staff; it is a pleasure to know you have enjoyed your time at our property. We look forward to welcoming you again in the near future.
Sincerely yours,

Lorena C
Assistant to General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 January 2021
Google Translation

Date of stay: November 2020
  • Trip type: Travelled on business
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kathleen Rowe, Atención al cliente/recepción at The Santa Maria, a Luxury Collection Hotel & Golf Resort, Panama City, responded to this reviewResponded 12 January 2021
Google Translation

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 January 2021 via mobile
Google Translation

Date of stay: January 2021
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kathleen Rowe, Atención al cliente/recepción at The Santa Maria, a Luxury Collection Hotel & Golf Resort, Panama City, responded to this reviewResponded 12 January 2021

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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