What the Hell Are Those?

So here we are again…

For this Design Election, both pictures are from the same poorly (i.e.: super-tacky, ugly and cheesy) decorated hotel in Panama City, Panama.

Remember when you were a kid (or in my case, remember last night…) when you played the “which is worse…” game? You know, the game with ridiculous theoretical questions about what would be worse and it’s nearly impossible to choose an answer because both options are horrendously awful? Here, let’s play a quick round just to warm up for this Design Election:


Falling down a flight of stairs at your own house (in front of everyone) while you’re hosting a fundraiser cocktail party for your boss’ favourite charity?


Falling down a flight of stairs at your not-so-friendly neighbour’s house-party while over 30 strangers watch and secretly laugh?

See? Isn’t this game fun!? :)

So here are the official Design Election picks.
Cast your vote in the comment section below for the WORST decorative wall treatment.

These leafy "everlasting" vines aren't fooling anyone...


If you can bring yourself to possibly look beyond the jarring bright yellow sponge-paint wall treatment, you will notice the Passport 2 Design mascot (my boyfriend, Jeff) pointing to two strands of everlasting (read: FAKE) vines that are clipped to the top of the wall just below the ceiling. These dusty, sun-bleached plastic leaves are left dangling in the corner of the room with no connection to a theme, furniture, or decor in the rest of the space. They are completely out of place and random… I still do not understand why they are in EVERY single room in this hotel.  Does the  decorator really believe he/she has fooled guests into thinking there are actually creeping vines growing up the wall? Seriously? Seeer-eee-us-lee????

Is that a window back there or just a mirage?


Our favourite Passport 2 Design mascot is back again, this time he is happy to show us that the somewhat fuzzy outline of the windows along the back wall of the hotel’s painfully long, wide and impractical hallway is actually concealed by these dangle-y white polyester or nylon strings. It’s like the window is wearing a cheap hula skirt…or at least it’s as if the decorator is once again trying to fool us into thinking there’s no window wall in the back. Crazy.  These 12 foot long strings sway and dance in the draft from the overhead ceiling fans, creating a freakish mirage-like image of the window mullions behind.  Seriously? This window/wall treatment is heinous.

Just to give you a better idea of how this strange stringy wall treatment would look hanging from the back wall, I did a very quick sketch (most of the proportions are WAY off) to communicate how wildly unusual the stringy curtain treatment looks from a distance.

Sketch of hallway with string-curtain treatment.

So there you have it…which is worse?  Tough call…

Cast your vote!

Related Posts with Thumbnails


  1. I love the window to nowhere. Where in Panama was this? It is tacky, but at least looks clean. Is Panama overall clean in your experience?

  2. Hi Sherri, thanks for reading. The window leading to no where is pretty funny, I kept joking that it would lead to somewhere absurd, like Narnia or the North Pole ;)

    This hotel is located in an area in Panama City called Santa Anna, it’s really close to Casco Viejo (an area I love to visit – see a photo of the Cathedral in Casco Viejo in this post: http://passport2design.com/mirror-mirror-on-the-wall/ ). Santa Anna is not a very safe area, but we made sure to take cabs and walk into Casco only during the day when it was bright out. The hotel is really affordable and a great deal, and luckily it WAS very clean. I was happy to discover the bathroom was not grungy either. To answer your question, yes, Panama is overall very clean, but like any other city, there are areas that make you cringe. But this is to be expected. As a whole, the city is beautiful, clean and the people are very friendly and kind. It’s a great place to visit.

  3. Bren Cardiff |

    Tania=- what an awesome concept- being the established travellers you two are I look forward to more. Its like you’re finally publishing what we all think at some point of our stay in random places with hidious/tacky designs. CONGRATS on the blog!

  4. Thanks for the kind words, Bren! Means so much that you like the new blog :) Hope you’ll keep reading – I’ll do my best to be as entertaining as possible! Did you see the post on bad Asia toilets? http://passport2design.com/thats-the-toilet/ Seems to be everyone’s fave so far…and a good glimpse into our experiences with the Porcelain Throne (or lack thereof) in Asia. haha. But I also want to make sure to spread the word on the GOOD design I encounter – it’s just as worthy of mention :)

  5. I’m going to have to go with the freaky vines for this one!

  6. Thanks for your vote, Shannon. I am still torn between the two horrendous options, but I can see why you went with the freaky vines. Thanks for reading!

  7. My vote would have to be on the strange vines hanging from the ceiling. They are almost weirder in the picture, than they were in real life, but that is probably due to the fruity crop top I am wearing.


  8. Gotta be the vines for me…

  9. Thanks for the vote, Nyla. Seems as though the vine-treatment is clearly the winner of the ugly-award. Thanks for commenting, hope you’ll come back soon :)

  10. Your crop-top is what makes this photo the glorious thing it is! Thanks for voting, Passport2Design mascot ;)

  11. My vote is for the plastic vines. What I find more “weird” is the painting of the nude running man. It looks like he is about to jump over Jeff!

  12. Haha, yes, it IS a strange painting! I didn’t want to overwhelm everyone by listing too many weird things about this room, but the running man painting is one of them. If you look closely, it’s actually part of a diptych…there should be TWO of the paintings there, but I guess they saved money and split the two up so each room only gets one. Hilarious. Thanks for reading, Nadia ;)

Leave a Reply