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All You Need to Know About the Pool
at Tropic Star Lodge

Pool & Beach (40)
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Guests1 room, 2 adults, 0 children
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Pool review highlights
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... and 3B, a standalone building located up the hill above the pool and building 2. I loved this location. We could see the...
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... an idyllic setting reminiscent of Fantasy Island. An amazing pool, jungle hikes to a deserted white sand beach, cultural...
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... Richard and all the staff for the amazing work done.The new pool is amazing,Food is better and better.Don’t miss the Pina...

Reviews that mention pool

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Debby44 wrote a review Aug 2014
Flower Mound, Texas110 contributions97 helpful votes
My husband and my boys (19 and 15) have been dreaming of this vacation for 10 years. The trip was fabulous. Tropic Star handles everything in a first class way. A representative met us at the plane when we arrived in Panama City. She took us through customs and put us in a club bar while she went and got our luggage and loaded into the car service which took us to our hotel. We stayed at the Waldorf Astoria in Panama City, which is one of the nicest hotels I've ever stayed in. Gabriel picked us up in the morning and took us to the smaller airport in town for the 50 minute flight on Air Panama to Pinas Bay. The small air strip in the village is a short bus and boat ride to Tropic Star Lodge. All food and wine with dinner is included in your fare. We had a delicious lunch and then tried the hike over to Playa Blanca. This was a great hike, but not for someone who is not in shape (steep and slippery). What a great beach though. Shyla the lodge black lab joined us on the hike.
We did the three days of fishing, four nights package. TSL has 13 Bertram 31 foot fishing boats that all go out before 6:30a. The boats travel together 15-20 north of the resort in search of dolphins and humpback whales, where the live bait is located. Once 10 are caught, the boat runs for an hour 10-20 miles offshore to the Humbolt current trash line. This is where the marlin, tuna and dorada are found. The boats can also do inshore fishing for cubera snapper, rooster fish and jack.
We were not as lucky as some other anglers. We caught 4 sailfish, 2 dorado, 1 cubera and 1 jack in the 3 days. No black marlin, blue marlin, tuna or roosterfish for us. Maybe this would be one reason to book the 6 days, 7 nights?
The village people came over to the resort one evening to perform and dance and sale their wares. TSL took anyone interested over to the village one afternoon as well. I really enjoyed this. We got to see their houses, school, churches, bars, beach, shops, etc. There are 1,500 people in Pinas, 60% of which are children under the age of 12. They love for you to bring candy, or you can buy it from one of their shops to support their economy.
The rooms are vary spacious and the air con works great! We were in 3A and 3B, a standalone building located up the hill above the pool and building 2. I loved this location. We could see the bay from our deck. You are so remote here, it is very peaceful. They don't lock the room doors and there are no bugs! No tv or phone either. Wifi is available outside the main building/dining room.
The food was very good. The catch of the day (usually mahi mahi for us), and the steaks were delicious. My boys loved the afternoon snacks when you got off the boat - fresh mahi mahi fish fingers and thinly sliced tuna sashimi with wasabi and soy sauce.
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Date of stay: August 2014Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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RandySigler wrote a review Mar 2022
Marblehead, Massachusetts32 contributions5 helpful votes
+1
My recent trip to Tropic Star Lodge (March ’22) was over 40 years in the making. I had been dreaming of fishing TSL since 10 or 12 yrs of age, seeing the ad in the back of Field & Stream and Saltwater Sportsman magazines. Fishing has been in my blood as long as I can remember, and I have been blessed by being able to blend my vocation and avocation into one. For the last 30 years I have run the largest saltwater guide service in the eastern US (maybe excluding Florida). With a career’s worth of time spent on the water striving to create memorable experiences for my clients, I feel particularly qualified to comment on the fishing related services that TSL delivers.

What I wasn’t prepared for was the world class shoreside amenities. Fortunately, I was part of a group of eight … myself, and seven investment banking and mining executives, who have spent their careers traveling the globe, entertaining, and doing business with the uber-wealthy. This group was exceedingly qualified to assess the shoreside aspect of TSL.

As my title suggests, TSL delivers a 5-star “Michelin” level experience at every turn.

Fishing: TSL is world renown for it’s Marlin fishery. Both Blue and Black are caught here in consistent fashion, with winter being prime season. The fishing is not far from the dock (25 minutes?), and the boats and crews are exceptional for this fishery. Anyone who knows Marlin fishing knows that it is somewhat of a crap shoot … during prime season, TSL may have 15 boats out on the marlin grounds for a full day, and 7 or 10 of them may hook up and land a marlin. This, or course, means 5 – 8 boats might not hook up. If you define your success solely on the landing of a marlin, you are opening yourself up for disappointment. However, if you have your eyes open to all of the other amazing things happening … the bait, the birds, the jungle shoreline, turtles, dolphins, whale sharks, the other fish species (tuna, dorado, sailfish, etc.), the proficiency of the captains and mates, etc., then I guarantee you will be blown away.

Our trip was geared towards targeting the inshore fishery for Roosters, Cubera Snappers, Trevally, etc. and we had a sub-focus of throwing flies. TSL has recently begun developing what is an astounding inshore fishery … pulling live baits on 30lb class conventional tackle, trolling swim baits on spinning gear, and casting poppers and swim baits on hefty spinning gear. The trolling (bait or lures) was significantly more effective (and easier for older clients or those more limited physically), but we caught fish every day on poppers and flies. For those who really prefer casting (flies or lures), the lodge is actively refining it’s offerings to cater to those desires. For example, TSL Fishing Director, Richard White, knew I was passionate about throwing flies, and that I was willing to do whatever I could to try for a rooster fish on a fly … something not done to date at the lodge. Without my asking, Richard took it upon himself to set up a special trip for me to spend a morning in a panga, w/a guide, casting flies along specific rocky shorelines and pocket beaches that were known to hold juvenile roosters. It was a breathtaking experience, and although we didn’t get a rooster to bite, we found small African Pompano, jumbo bonito (that any east coast angler would drool over), and tenacious jacks … all while surrounded, up close and personal, with the impenetrable Darrien Jungle, and spectacular rocky shoreline … it honestly felt like King Kong could emerge from the jungle at any time.

Our group, fishing three boats over six days, caught close to 20 species of fish, including black marlin, yellow fin tuna, bonito, snook, jacks and pompano all on fly rods. My bottom line regarding fishing … come with plans to see and enjoy all aspects of the fishing that TSL has to offer, and let the lodge know exactly what you are hoping for, and there is ZERO chance that you will leave disappointed.

In terms of the shoreside amenities, I am still in awe at how they pull it all off so seamlessly. TSL is completely isolated and self sufficient, yet they don’t miss a trick ... every aspect from when you land in Panama City, through planes, busses and pangas to get to the lodge, all through your stay, and your safe delivery back to Panama City … and all done with a smile, and the warmth of an old friend. Patterson, who appears to be head of food & beverage services, knew everyone by their first name within about 30 minutes of arrival on Saturday (and there were about 30 new guests in our week). A knock on your door at 5:30 every morning with the (pre-selected) beverage of your choice. Dinner choices are selected each morning (from 5 – 7 incredible options), and every night your dinner is placed in your spot … every server know YOU. Cold face cloths greet you every day as you walk up the dock after fishing. The new Marlin Bar off the charts. TSL is literally Disney Land for adult anglers.
But THE FOOD !!! OMG … the wealthy bankers/CEOs in our group were BLOWN AWAY at the caliber of food … both content and presentation. Multiple members stated definitively that TSL dining rivals the best that London or New York has to offer … all while in the middle of the jungle!!

Finally, shoreside experiences. In addition to fishing, TSL offers an idyllic setting reminiscent of Fantasy Island. An amazing pool, jungle hikes to a deserted white sand beach, cultural visits to the local village, turtle nesting/release tours, SUP paddle boards, kayaks, ping-pong, billiards, corn-hole, darts, and more. Just like the fish, everything here is oversized, including pigeon sized grasshoppers, business card sized beetles and leaf bugs … but there are no biting flies/mosquitoes (thank god!)

In my business, I always try to undersell and over perform, so it makes me slightly uneasy to present such a strong endorsement of TSL … however, having met the leadership, and seeing the dedication of the local staff, I have no doubt that my spectacular experience was just another day in the jungle for them.

If you are looking for an exceptional fishing vacation, in an amazing, pristine natural environment, without giving up the comforts you are accustomed to, you would be hard pressed to find a comparable opportunity, and I would strongly urge you to consider Tropic Star Lodge.
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Date of stay: March 2022
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Response from Mallory White, Guest Services / Front Office at Tropic Star Lodge
Responded 5 Apr 2022
Dear RandySigler, Thank you very much for taking the time to leave your thorough and thoughtful review of your recent trip to Tropic Star Lodge. We very much appreciate your comments especially provided your background and thrilled to know that Tropic Star delivered you a 5 -star “Michelin” level experience both on the water and shore side. Thank you for positive feedback of our dedicated staff. We will certainly pass along your praises to the Chef and his team as well as Patterson and his team. Richard has been working hard to ensure the fishing techniques offered by lodge crews are as dynamic as the fishery itself. Like Richard always says, go for what’s biting! Again, we’re thrilled that we were able to host you for your fishing vacation and we’re sincerely happy that it was exceptional every way you slice it. Best wishes, Mallory and Richard White
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Wahib N wrote a review Jan 2018
Paris, France22 contributions25 helpful votes
Nick,Nicolas,Roger and i arrived on Jan 6 each with a specific goal.
We did it all.Thank you Captain Richard and all the staff for the amazing work done.The new pool is amazing,Food is better and better.Don’t miss the Pina Colada.
Fishing is amazing our Captain and mate were top.
We will come back for our third trip soon.
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Date of stay: January 2018Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Response from Mallory W, Manager at Tropic Star Lodge
Responded 25 Jan 2018
Dear Wahib N, We always love when you and the guys come to visit! Thank you for your compliments and taking the time to write your review. We're glad you enjoyed the new pool area, the food and most importantly the fishing. Congratulations again on those Black Marlin! We hope to see you back at the Lodge soon for some laughs over pina coladas! All the best, Mallory and Richard White
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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seminolepilot wrote a review Nov 2008
Denver, CO10 contributions3 helpful votes
+1
My initial thoughts on our Tropic Star experience would read virtually word for word as wolftrout's does above. He summarizes things very nicely. I would especially agree with his observation that fishing is never quite as good as one dreams of, some work is required to do well. Alas, the fish do not simply jump in the boat as some guests seem to expect.

Synopsis: Our experience at TSL was absolutely wonderful, honestly exceeding all expectations. Crews, boats, rooms, facilities, food and bar - all were first class. Amazing considering the nearest road is over 100 miles away and supplies must be shipped or flown in. This is an extremely remote location. The lodge has a beautiful dining room, bar, and pool. A private beach can be enjoyed, albeit with a bit of a walk or boat ride. Food is excellent - made to order - and does revolve at night around the catch of the day as one might imagine.

We worked hard for the fish we did catch - but in the end achieved a first Black Marlin and my wife's first Pacific Sailfish among many other species. In between, the inshore fishing for snapper and trophy sized rooster fish provided a nice change of pace from the offshore scene. Yellowfin tuna were abundant during our trip. The shoreline is visually stunning, a mountainous jungle right to the edge of the Pacific.

The Lodge does aim to please - customer service is phenomenal. Wakeup calls each day are in person - a knock on the door - with an offer of hot coffee. My wife briefly mentioned a desire for some soy sauce and wasabi, this resulted in those items being on the boat subsequent days and we enjoyed fresh sushi each day on the boat. Many guests enjoyed a massage by a therapist the Lodge flew in from Panama City for a few days.

Some notes: Ladies welcome. My wife was quite comfortable and may have had a better time than I did. Power is 110 Volts -- plugs the same as in the USA. The lodge is staffed by locals from a nearby village, children's supplies such as crayons, paper, etc are extremely appreciated by them. Tackle provided is top quality and in good condition but you are welcome to bring your own. Boats are Detroit Diesel powered - sound proofing is minimal - some ear plugs or noise cancelling headsets may be helpful for softer souls while under way. TSL captains know two speeds - slow and full throttle !

Trip pricing is significant, but considering experience worth every penny. Trips available for all budgets with shorter 3 and 4 day trips available outside the prime winter months where 6 days of fishing is the norm. Package price does not include charter flight to Pinas Bay, tips, alcohol or hotel in Panama City. Trip price does include excellent pick up service at airports and hotels, we felt safe and in good hands and enjoyed skipping the customs line.

The US dollar is widely accepted throughout Panama. While in Panama City we would recommend the beautiful Bristol Hotel located in the financial district. It has an outstanding restaurant and beautiful bar. We felt quite safe traveling throughout the country - and did so after visiting the TSL.

If offshore fishing is your thing, the Tropic Star Lodge is the holy grail of fishing trips in my opinion.
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Date of stay: April 2008Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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cedarchristiansen wrote a review Mar 2024
Edmonds, Washington2 contributions1 helpful vote
We just returned from a visit during inshore fishing season and were blown away by our experience. The lodge is beautiful, the food and accommodations were perfect, all the staff we encountered were welcoming and professional, and our every need was met from arrival at PTY to departure.

We booked a week long stay with 6 days of fishing. I had planned on taking a few days off while the guys in my family fished but I had such a great time in the boat I fished 6 full days! We caught many different species and were impressed by the expertise of our captain and mate. A drink at the Marlin Bar and a dip in the pool is the perfect post fishing ritual.

My only regret is that I did not get a chance to use the kayaks/paddle boards or do any hiking—but world class fishing opportunities came first! If you’re not too tired from reeling in a ton of fish, I recommend the afternoon cultural tour to Piñas village with Ross. We want to express our gratitude to the staff for an amazing week and are looking forward to another visit in the future!
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Date of stay: March 2024Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Response from Mallory White, Guest Services / Front Office at Tropic Star Lodge
Responded 4 weeks ago
Dear cedarchristiansen, We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us! It’s just the best, after a day on the water, to join the other anglers for drinks and snacks at Marlin Bar, followed by a refreshing swim in the pool. Our guests often love taking a tour of the nearby village of Pinas, it’s so interesting to learn about the local cultures, flora, and fauna. We can't wait to welcome you back for more exciting fishing adventures and a relaxing paddle in the bay. Best wishes, Mallory and Richard White
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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