The slew of accommodation options in Bocas del Toro is enough to make anyone’s head turn. However, it doesn’t have to be. If staying in Bocas Town itself, the largest and most developed town of the islands, there’s really only one hotel that stands above the rest: Hotel Palma Royale.
Hotel Palma Royale is the perfect choice for smart couples or small families looking to enjoy all that the Caribbean has to offer—without sacrificing comfort in the process. The hotel looks much larger than its neighboring bed and breakfasts, ‘towering’ at four floors; however, this isn’t an impersonal chain hotel shoving as many clients into its rooms as possible. Rather, travelers can expect only 14 luxurious suites, each large and spacious with an intimate and personal ambience.
Hotel Palma Royale’s location is absolutely ideal—a determining factors in why we chose Hotel Palma Royale in the first place. The hotel is a brief, five-minute walk from where the ferry docks, conveniently located toward the end of the town’s only main road. In no time at all we were able to jump on a boat to begin our day of island hopping or sit down at one of the best restaurants and bars in the area. However, we still felt we had our own piece of paradise, enough removed to get a good night’s sleep without any reverberating disco beats to keep us up. But more than anything else, the views from Palma Royale are utterly unparalleled—quite assuredly the best in all of Bocas. We recommend a deluxe or penthouse suite, though all rooms are an excellent value. Waking up to a cup of coffee on your balcony with the water lapping right in front of you is certainly an experience that can’t be had just anywhere in Bocas.
The views at Palma Royale are certainly the hotel’s best attribute, but that’s not to say that it is lacking in any other way. Our deluxe suite was immaculate, even ready to accommodate us a bit before the official check-in time. Once we were able to finally tear our eyes away from the view, we could finally take in the amenities of our room.
The first area that caught our attention was the kitchen. Fully equipped with modern appliances, the kitchen area had everything we would have needed to make a home-cooked meal. We chose to dine at some of the exquisite restaurants just a stone-throw away, but it was nice having the kitchen there should we have wanted to use it. I was especially pleased with the coffee station, supplying fresh, whole beans and a grinder to guarantee a perfectly delectable coffee drinking experience. I also noted that after using the coffee maker, housekeeping cleaned the entire pot; it was a small detail, but one that was greatly appreciated the next morning when I went to brew my daily cup of Joe.
The living area was comfortably decorated, with plenty of seating and modern furnishings. A large TV and kitchen table completed the ensemble, truly turning the suite into an apartment. We appreciated the large windows that made enjoying the view outside easily done from nearly any seated position.
Our bedroom was separated from the living and kitchen area. The queen bed was easily one of the most comfortable we had slept in during our entire vacation. Our bedroom was a bit small, but Palma Royale still managed to equip it with a closet and ironing board. Again, it’s the little details that set Palma Royale above the rest.
The marble bathroom was luxuriant and spacious, with relaxing colors, hot water, and plenty of counter space. It came fully equipped with shower essentials.
There’s not a large restaurant at the Palma Royale, but there is a lovely outdoor area that doubles as a cozy breakfast nook and romantic happy hour lounge. Each morning we began our day here with delicious breakfasts cooked up from the staff, such as pancakes and omelettes, fresh orange juice, and coffee. We also sipped on a few drinks during happy hour our final day there, wishing we had made time to include it in our three previous days’ itineraries. The cocktails were tasty and strong, an excellent value.
One final point to mention about Hotel Palma Royale is the staff. It’s a small hotel, which means a small staff as well. After just the first day, we began to recognize the smiling faces at the desk and restaurant, always willing to help us with our questions or reservation needs. They did a wonderful job in assuring we enjoyed our stay.
Overall, if you are headed to Bocas Town, we can’t imagine a better place to lay your head. Hotel Palma Royale has our full recommendation. Great value, great service, and great view—what’s not to love?
Have you been to Bocas del Toro? Where did you stay?
We were guests of Hotel Palma Royale. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own.