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Inside a Suite At Gamboa Rainforest Resort

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: Gamboa, Panama
February 2, 2012 at 9:15 AM | by | ()

What's it like shacking up in the middle of the rainforest for a few days? Not as bad as you'd think! The independently-owned Gamboa Rainforest Resort went up 12 years ago, and was built as a way for visitors to experience the rainforest of Panama, while still enjoying all the luxuries of a full-service hotel—like tiled bathrooms, a Club Lounge, and air conditioning.

Technically, the resort isn't too, too far from civilization—it's only about a 45-minute drive from Panama City. But by the look (just trees and rivers for miles), feel (kinda woodsy), and sound of it (birds!), you'd think you were in it for the long haul. And that's just how owner Herman Bern wanted it: "The great thing about Gamboa," he told us, "is you go out fishing on a boat, and all of a sudden, you could be in the middle of the Amazon. Then, in half an hour, you can go back to the city and have a glass of champagne."

Take a tour of one of the suites, below!

Inside these $500/night suites (Junior suites, for slightly less, offer a loft-style space, but have no bathtubs), guests get a pretty sizable living room, small kitchen area, and best of all: a balcony, with hammock, overlooking the Chagres River. Which, like the Ocean view rooms at Westin Playa Bonita, is definitely the view you should request upon check-in.

The rooms here are set up motel-style, with open-air walkways connecting all the rooms. Yet for an independent resort built smack in the middle of the rainforest, this place is seriously hooked up. An elevator provides access to all seven floors of the resort, and staff are constantly on call to make sure the rooms (which were 99% booked the day we visited) are immaculately swept, tidied and polished. Once you step inside your room, you don't for one minute feel like you're in the middle of a rainforest.

With good reason, the resort is super eco-conscious, and tries to get all guests to re-use towels and conserve water.

This place is great for couples on a honeymoon (a nearby privately-owned watchtower doubles as a romantic sunset dinner spot), or families—because the hotel offers restaurants, a pool, and fun-filled daytrips around the rainforest, little ones are less likely to feel bored.

 In addition to the Spa by Clarins (treatments range from $50-$210), a giant lobby greets guests, with an adorable wooden bar in the corner called Monkey Bar (above) that has giant floor-to-ceiling windows backing up to the river and Soberenia National Park. And if the rooms didn't offer the same stunning view, you might well find yourself drinking your days away in Pina Coladas right there at the bar.

[Photos: HotelChatter]

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