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All reviews jw marriott el faro pool area breakfast buffet main restaurant steak restaurant japanese restaurant hotel guests rooms are large sushi the pacific ocean great beach hour drive tai pools panama kai
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Reviewed 9 March 2011

The hotel is beautiful, the rooms are exquisitely clean, the service is excellent and the staff couldn't be more helpful. My only complaint is that there's only one restaurant (other than a pizza hut), the menu is limited and the food is mediocre yet expensive. Good restaurants in the area are a long distance away so you're fairly dependent on this one restaurant for all meals - other than poolside or beachside lunch service. I wish they would incorporate another, more casual place to eat and improve their menu.

Date of stay: March 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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Thank heven75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol_Hotels, Manager at The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort Panama, Autograph Collection, responded to this reviewResponded 17 March 2011

heven75,

Thank you for taking time to share your comments and concerns.

We are happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us! I am also thrilled to announce that we have recently acquired a new Executive Chef who will be implementing a new menu and specials, so change is coming soon.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any further questions or concerns and we hope to welcome you back very soon.

With kindest regards,

Bristol Buenaventura

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 February 2011

We would love to have given this hotel a 5 star rating after our very relaxing stay there but there were some drawbacks. You really must have a car unless you want to stay in the hotel all the time. Taxis have to be called for and quoted charges of $30 or more for a short trip to a restaurant on the main highway or to the next resort are scandalous. We spoke to Benny at the desk about this and he very kindly and efficiently arranged for a driver to take us out into the hills for a day at a reasonable price, and he even phoned ahead and made a lunch booking for us.
The eating arrangements were another problem as there is only one restaurant to eat in during the evening and this is expensive and the menu does not seem to change. There is an outside Italian restaurant but this, perversely, shuts at 20.00 weekdays.. There is a deli but that is also shut at night. The hotel badly needs a coffee shop that does light meals in the evening.
During the week we found space under the umbrellas by the infinity pool at the beach but at the weekend it gets very busy and all the shade goes very early
Our room was kept very clean and we had a great view out over the over the villas to the sea. Staff were friendly and there was very useful free internet access in the business centre. The choice of food at breakfast was great and the service excellent.
Some management attention to the points raised above would make this a really great hotel.

Date of stay: February 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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Thank mungoandmaria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol_Hotels, Manager at The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort Panama, Autograph Collection, responded to this reviewResponded 17 March 2011

mungoandmaria,

Thank you for staying with us at Bristol Buenaventura!

We greatly appreciate your feedback. The resort is quite remote but there are plans for change and your concerns will definitely be taken into consideration in order to exceed guest's expectations.

We hope to welcome you back soon!

Warmest regards,

Bristol Buenaventura

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 January 2011

This is a property with great potential that doesn't live up to expectations. It is in a beautiful location on the Pacific Coast but somewhat isolated. There is ongoing development that will help to give guests more options and restaurants in the local area. A car however is strongly recommended at this point. When we arrived we were given a room overlooking the parking lot when we had confirmed an ocean view. This was resolved and we were moved to an ocean view as we confirmed but were told we would be charged a higher rate. After digging out our confirmation the hotel backed off that position and we were charged our original rate as confirmed. This is a small hotel and when our room was moved we were also told that because of a large wedding over the next four days that some things namely restaurants would not be available. Unfortunately this limited us to one main restaurant for every dinner with a limited menu which was consistently the same. Also it was an outdoor restaurant which included a healthy didn't of mosquitos daily during dining. While the hotel says they have 24 hour room service we called for one hour before they answered and then it took an hour to get what we ordered with items missing. Our room did not have wireless Internet which required us to go to the lobby to access the net and get email. The property could have been cleaner especially in the common areas. There were spills in the halls and on the stairs that were not cleaned for several days. The rooms were basically clean but could have used a deep cleaning. Twice daily maid service was a plus. The hotel staff especially the front desk staff and the restaurants tries hard to please
and for the most part a made an effort. The manager was aware of our dissatisfaction and at least introduced himself to us but did little to resolve our issues. If you book it, make sure there is not a big event scheduled.
His hotel make absolutely sure there is not a large group booked at the same time because as an individual guest your needs will be last on the list. Great potential but they need to get their act together.

To the credit of the manager they did at least show his face and apologized but in all honesty did nothing to resolve our dissatisfaction.

Date of stay: January 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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2  Thank BABH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 January 2011

There were ants in the room. Ants all over the night table. On New Year's eve there was no room-service, and only one ($80) choice of food. There were no other dining options. The $80 meal included one tiny lobster which in FLA would be an illegal catch. For the end of the year one couldn't book for any less than 3 nights at almost $500 a night, pre-paid. On January 1, 2 and 3 many of the items on the menu were not available. On 3 room-service deliveries, the pepper shaker was empty, and the salt humid to the consistency of a block. The lamp on the night table had a heavy layer of duct. The crystal door on the shower made a frightening cracking sound as if it was about to brake in little pieces shattered glass. In four days, there were never enough lounge chairs at the beach pool, El Faro. The presence of what very evidently were prostitutes were sorely noticed at El Faro. Not the best experience for a holiday, much less for the money charged.

Date of stay: January 2011
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
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Thank rsachs24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 January 2011

This is a beautiful property, from the rooms to the pool cabanas to the "tree of life" they have in the front courtyard. It's a shame (and a mystery) why the service was so bad. From 1 + hour long waits for food at uncrowded restaurants, to fishing boats just not showing up (after being told multiple times it was "on its way") to many staff members giving off a pretty strong vibe of indifference to various screw ups. Though I wanted to love the place, the bad service makes it not worth the steep price.

Date of stay: December 2010
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
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Thank jbjacobs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol_Hotels, Manager at The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort Panama, Autograph Collection, responded to this reviewResponded 3 January 2011

jbjacobs,

Thank you for taking the time to write about Bristol Buenaventura.

We sincerely appreciate the time you took to provide us with your valuable feedback and thrilled that you enjoyed our facilities, however sadden to hear of such shortcomings during your visit. Please rest assure that we will urgently address the issues mentioned to avoid any future reoccurrence in our effort to continuously improve our product and service excellence.

We hope to welcome you back to Bristol Buenaventura soon to showcase that efforts have been made to exceed your expectations.

Warmest regards,

Bristol Buenaventura

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