Arco Recommends

What to Do? Where to Go? Where to Stay? in Casco Viejo

Restaurants, Bars and Galleries in Casco Viejo

Our Cherry Picks:

American Trade Restaurant: restaurant from the American Trade Hotel in Plaza Herrera, by internationally recognized Panamanian chef Clara Icaza. Webpage here. For reservations: diningroom@americantradehotel.c

Donde José: gourmet experience at the corner of Calle 11 and Central. Limited seating, chef`s table, 8 course meal. Native ingredients, Panamanian cuisine with a twist by passionate chef José Carles. For Reservations

Lo Que Hay: This is José Carles ying and yang.  Fonda style, Panamanian home and street food with a twist. Fresh food of the day, and when they run out, it´s over! That´s the literal meaning of “lo que hay”.

The Strangers Club: Central Avenue and 11th St. Owners are a group of bartenders from the iconic Employees Only in New York. Professionally run, it was an awesome ambiance, food and drinks.. Facebook.

Pedro Mandinga: At A Avenue and 9th Street, right in front of Villa Agustina. Cuban flavor, beautiful interiors and their own label of rum.

Casa Bruja Gastropub: At B Avenue and 11th, at Las Clementinas. Panama´s most famous IPA beer offers new flavors every week. Great food, amazing ambiance. Facebook.

´t Bier Klooster: beer cafe on 8th street by Plaza Herrera. Fantastic Belgian beer and chips. Facebook.

Madrigal: gourmet restaurant by Michelin star chef Andres Madrigal. Located at the corner of 5th and A Avenue. Tel. 211-1956. Website.

UNIDO Cafe: bakery and amazing coffee at the American Trade Hotel. Addictive. Be careful. Facebook Page. website

The Fish Market (Truck): truck foodie movement reaches Casco! great fish tacos, and fish curry, they are located at Central Avenue and 10th street, next to the American Trade Hall and in front of the Lottery building. You can contact a Maurice ph 6151-1697 or

Bistro Café Lessep´s: 4th St and A Ave. French Bistro with all the classics! Facebook

Papaya Planet: B Ave and 10th St. Casco´s first bookstore café. Excellent space for the whole family, great books and food..

Ocho y Medio: located at El Colegio, it is one of the most beautiful ambiances in Casco. Love the garden and the gin & tonics! Tel. 209-8145

Mahalo: healthy food, yoga and pilates. Located next to Madrigal, on A Avenue just past 5th Street.


Our Little Italy:

Caffe Per Due: Manuela run our favorite neighborhood spot for pizza. She is from Mantova, where I have to say I got the best food ever in Italy. They are located at A Avenue and First Street, at PH Paseo Las Bovedas. 6512-9311 / 6496-4878/

Carpaccio: Italian cuisine, outdoors and indoors seating at Plaza Catedral. Simple but sophisticated, pizzas, carpaccios and home made pastas. Phone: 3976427. Email: Facebook Carpaccio

Caffé Pizza: At Casa Neuman, corner of 8th and Central. Pastries, special deliveries, executive lunches for your office.

Restaurante Calicanto: freshly baked bread from their bakery next door. Home made pasta. Located at Casa Neuman, 8th Street.

Milano: the classic Italian brand at Plaza Bolivar. Good desserts, great location!

L`Osteria: Italian restaurant located at hotel Casa Del Horno. Enjoy the old colonial feeling surrounded by calicanto walls and having a great meal.   If you rather have something light: they have the Casa del Horno Café right next door!…..264-98-46

Mi Barrio: brick oven pizza! Central Ave and 8th Street,  Casa Neuman. Tel. 393-4444 /399-3521

Pastissima: everything pasta at the corner of Plaza Herrera and A Avenue, next to Banistmo.

Coffee, Icecream and Yogurt:

Dodó Café: Las Bóvedas. Charming café at the corner of Calle 1era and Plaza Francia. Vegetarian options, great coffee.

Super Gourmet: coffee, iced coffee, great gourmet sandwiches and food to grab & run. Location: Avenida A and 6th street….212-34-87

Grandclement: the best ice creams in Panama. French owned & run, wonderful new flavors! Location: Central Avenue and 4th street. 228-0737

Bajareque Coffee: High quality coffee from Chiriqui. Owners have been in coffee all their lives, it is their burning passion.  Bajareque will offer an experience, including classes and coffee tastings. Located at Calle 1era, next to Platea…6614-80-57

Casa Sucre Coffee Shop:  Excellent desserts and tea! try their chocolate cake, it is to die for. Ph. 6982-2504

Benissimo: artisanal ice cream made on site! great flavors with coffee and more. Located at the corner of 4th Street and A Avenue.

Forever Yogurt: Frozen yogurt at Calle 1era on your way to Las Bovedas. A must stop if you have small children, ultra fun to combine yogurt with dozens of toppings. Special requests ask Salah /6793 5087

VIP Juices: A Avenue, between 4th and 5th street. Nice milkshakes for a $1.

Café Americano: Coffee, and pastries, at the corner of 6th and A Avenue.

 PalettAmerica: great popsicles on 8th street and B Avenue, next to Tántalo. 

Capressa: salad restaurant on A Avenue and 1st street. Perfect if you are in a rush. To go and delivery.

Ay Mi Negra: popsicles at B Avenue and 8th, a few steps away from Tántalo. Facebook page.

Fish Specialty:

Aki: Sushi restaurant behind Tantalo. Nice sushi, intimate ambiance. Great place to start your evening. Blog post here.

Finca del Mar: Fish and seafood French style at Calle 2nda, behind the French Embassy. Open terrace with views. Open from Monday to Sunday, 8 am. until dinner. Phone: 6744-6223

Virrey: Peruvian food at 3rd street and B Avenue, next to the National Theater. Classic ceviches, light food.

Nazca: Peruvian food, behind the Cathedral and next to AKI. Nice lunch options. Tel. 393-7262

Nacion Sushi: located at Casa Casco, Plaza Herrera. Delivery! 209-1515 Facebook Page

Homestyle & International cooking:

Manolo Caracol: Spanish tapas and salads. Location: Avenida Central and 3rd street. 228-0109.

Caliope:  Teatro Amador´s new gastronomic concept. Facebook here. Reservations at +(507) 262.4030 //

Mostaza: Italian food with a cozy feeling. You will feel at home, either sitting outside or inside. Location: 3rd street and Avenida A. 228-3341

Saquella: love the almond croissant and the shakshouka eggs. Located at A Avenue and 7th Street. Tel. 387-6163

Café René: Tapas restaurant, informal. Location: Plaza Catedral, at the side of the church. 262-3487

Las Bóvedas Restaurant: because it’s set up at two of the vaults of Plaza Francia, its interesting to see the interior. Sometimes they have live music. Location: Plaza Francia. 228-8058

Diablicos: Central Avenue, between 2nd and 3rd. It specializes in Panamanian food, mainly from the Pacific side. On Fridays they bring the Caribbean spice up!…228-94-95

CasaBlanca: casual dining at Plaza Bolivar. 212-0040

Capital Bistro (CBP): beautiful roof terrace with direct water views and modern Panama City views. Sophisticated tapas. Tel. 212-1731 Website.

Santa Rita:  located at the groundfloor of hotel Casa Panamá, in front of V Centenario park and next to Rana Dorada. Spanish tapas, elegant ambiance, warm staff, loved the tapas.   Facebookweb here. Tel 62850294.

Casco Mar: Spanish tapas next to the Altar de Oro church. Water views. Tel. 228-3313

Nomada Eatery: Located at Luna´s Castle, it has great hamburguers and informal ambiance. Facebook Page.

Restaurant La Concordia: located at Hotel La Concordia, in front of the traffic light by Central Avenue and 11th Street. International food, really good desserts! Phone and web:  . 300-1125

Known for their Steaks:

Grapes: Restaurant and bar, serves international cuisine. It is located at 8th street, steps away from Tinto de Verano. Ph. 212-1882  Email:

Puerta de Tierra: steak specialties at the corner of 9th Street and Central Avenue. Excellent everything, but specially meats and specialty cocktails. Next to the Iglesia de La Merced….377-77-47

9 Reinas (Hotel Central): Hotel Central´s signature restaurant. Argentinian meats and more. Tel. 309-0300

Mixed with Nightlife:

La Rana Dorada: Casco`s beer factory. Different flavors and textures, great pizza to go along with it. Located at Casco`s entrance, by Parque V Centenario.

Danilo`s Jazz Club: if you are a serious jazz lover, this is your spot. If you are not, this is your spot too. Great ambiance, the sound system is professionally tuned. Run by the Danilo Perez Foundation, it is not only jazz, but a great cause. Webpage

Platea & Scena: Scena is a nice formal restaurant above Platea which is our favorite jazz bar. They also have live music most nights, ranging from salsa to rock. Located on Calle 1era, in front of the old Club Union. 228-4011

La Terraza: roof terrace bar at the Spanish Cultural Center by Las Bovedas. Great views, intimate space.

Relic (at Luna’s Castle): neat underground bar, literally built under the original stone city wall. Located at 9th Street, inside the backpackers hostel Luna´s Castle. This is a nice place you can’t miss…..262-15-40

Cedros: Rock at Central Avenue and 4th street, next to Hotel Central, a few steps away from Plaza Catedral…..6251-21-20

Casa Casco Roof Terrace and Restaurants: located at Plaza Herrera, go for dinner at one of their restaurants or for a drink at their panoramic roof terrace. Tel. 388-8183

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Where to Stay? Hotels and hostels in Casco Viejo

American Trade Hotel: One of the most beautiful and complete hotels in Casco Viejo. Fifty rooms, restaurant, jazz bar, pool, event space. Info:  Ph. (507) 211-2000

Las Clementinas, Chambers and Cafe: One of the most romantic places to stay in Casco! Don`t miss the gardens. All suites are full one bedrooms with equiped kitchen. Contact info: Panama  +507-228-7613 | +507-228-7617and Toll-free from US & Canada: 1-888-593-5023

La Concordia Hotel: located at Avenida Central and 11th Street it has ten suites with balcony, restaurant and a roof terrace with bar. Ask for the corner suite!  Phone. 300-1125

Central Hotel Panamá: Located in Plaza Catedral. It is a Historic  building, it began working as a Hotel scince 1874. Contacto info: (507) 309-0300.

Los Cuatro Tulipanes: short term rental apartments, nicely furnished. Nice service, good for family travelling together.….6070-45-49

Tántalo Hotel: hotel boutique and restaurant with a sophisticated young ambiance. Every room is decorated by a Panamanian artist. Located at B Avenue, in front of Escuela de Mexico.…262-40-30

Magnolia Inn: located behind the Cathedral, right in the middle of everything, this hotel offers you a great combo, whether you are traveling with family or only need an individual room. Owners Cherie and Reggie will make you feel like home!.  Ph. Local telephone: +(507)202-0872 and (507)6073-2773 US telephone number: 813-252-2744

Casa Sucre Bed and Breakfast: meet Alice and Richard, owners of this bed and breakfast, located in front of Tántalo, at the corner of B Avenue and 8th Street.  Website Casa Sucre here. Email:

Hotel Casco Antiguo: budget hotel at one of Casco`s hidden gems. Don´t miss the moroccan style lobby and the still running original elevator!..

Hospedaje Casco Viejo: Very well located, low budget, perfect for backpackers. or or call (507) 269-6166/211-20-27

Luna´s Castle: Also for backpackers. Beautiful and original hostel, water views and a great “underground” bar called Relic at the old colonial wall. Give them a call at: 262-1540.

Casa Nuratti:  Hotel for the young soul in Casco , next to Tantalo..  262-2315

Hotel Casa Panamá: At the very entrance of San Felipe, has terrace with pool.  Tel. 03-0992.

Villa Palma: Unique look!. First street and A Avenue. Tel. 303-1414

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Where to Shop? Shopping and Retail in Casco Viejo

El Rey grocery store: smallest and cutest of all the El Rey stores, this one is located at Central Avenue, diagonal to the American Trade Hotel. See blog here.

Felipe Motta wine store: located at El Colegio, slightly off Plaza Herrera, behind Casa Neuman. Great wine selection, if you are a wine aficionado, do ask for their wine club. Blog entry of their opening here. Their website here.

Vivendo: our favorite store for gifts made out of recycled materials. Beautifully crafted everything. No kidding! 4th Street and A Avenue….391-38-00

Karavan: Art from the Caribbean part of Panama (Portobelo). Located at 3rd Street, in front of the Arco Chato…228-71-77

La Lupa:  young art gallery featuring Panamanian artists and creative souvenirs.  A Avenue and 5th Street.

UnderCover Rain Boots: the cutest rain boots you´ve ever seen! designs by Panamanian artists. At A Avenue and 5th Street. Website HERE.

Diablo Rosso: Contemporary art and emergent artists . Edificio El Colegio, Plaza Herrera.

La Musa: Art gallery and lounge. Corner of 5th Street and A Avenue

No Me Olvides: the classic Panabrisa (Guayabera), a traditional garment in Panamanian wardrobe. Linen dresses for ladies, elegant shirts for men. Corner of 4th and A Avenue.

Reprosa: Panamanian jewelry inspired in traditional pre colombian huacas. Art Deco building, Avenida A, between Calle 5ta y 4ta….391-38-00

Mitchelle Quiñones: Jewelry specialist in Casco Viejo. She has her workshop at home. Facebook Page

Lido Isle Boutique: Beach and casual wear, straight from Bocas del Toro to Casco. They feature their own designs and great accesories. Located at Casa Remón on 5th Street next to the Canal Museum. See blog entry here.

Galería de Arte Indígena: artcraft shop, located at Calle 2nda. Wide range of Panama Hats.

Souvenirs La Ronda: artcraft at Calle 2nda….211-10-01

Souvenirs El Farol: artcraft at Calle 2nda and Avenida A…228-85-97



CascoStation: this is a “coworking” place for creative minds and entrepreneurs. Located at 5th Street and A Avenue. If you have a small business, this is a great choice!  web CascoStation.  Ph. 838-6111.

Casco Charters: fishing, beach, boating, all from Casco Viejo! amazing day trips to clear blue waters and white sand with tropical jungle on top. Book your expedition at their Facebook Page HERE.

MailBoxes Etc: Couriers, shipping, packaging, purchasing. Located at A Avenue and 8th, near the San José Church. Email:  Ph. 397-8148. Blog entry here.

Laundry: Fashion & Clean, at Casa Neuman on 8th Street and Ave Central. Email:, Tel: 6351-6360.

Casco Antiguo Spanish School: mix your Casco Viejo trip with learning a new language. Located at Santa Familia. Tel: +507 203 1320 Cel: +507 6980 5096 US Tel: +1 203 820 2234

Taller Colonial: Wood workshop. If you like the floors of the American Trade Hall, knock on Troy`s door. Amazing stuff, knowledgeable team.

24 Hour Store: Located at the entrance of San Felipe, in front of Parque V Centenario, next to Habana Panama. Small convenience store with basic over the counter medicine and survival stuff like milk, wine, deodorant, shampoo and flip flops.

Panama Travel Unlimited: Day tours, trips to San Blas and whale watching. Contact: ph. (507)203-9790/ 9791

COPA Airlines: Point of sales, located at Central Avenue and 9th, next to the American Trade Hotel. Visit the office to buy tickets. Open Mondays to Fridays, from 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.

Casco Bikes: Bike tours, bike rentals. Located at Flor de Lirio, by 12th Street and A Avenue. Bilingual tours. FB here Tel. 6781-7283

ELS Language School: 5th Street and A Avenue, stay in Casco and learn Spanish, English or Portuguese. Info:

Wellness, Fitness:

Revilla`s Pharmacy: Located at the corner of A Avenue and 1st Street.  Over the counter medicine and by prescription, vitamins and beauty products. Email: Phone: 207-1839 . Need delivery? call 225-0555.  See blog entry HERE.

TLG Gym/ Alley Cat Foundation: located at 4th Street and A Avenue, at Santa Familia. They specialize in crossfit, Jiu Jitsu and boxing. Contact:

Casco Yoga Panama: Casco´s first yoga studio! with a soothing voice and great technique, Maya helps your body re gain flexibility and re align energies. At El Colegio building, at 8th Street, first floor. Casco Yoga Panama

Casa Thai: relax in this mini oasis located at 4th Street and A Avenue (next to Arco Properties!). Foot massage, thai massage, wonderful! Tel. 6868-5345

El Cuarto Rojo por La Tribu Performance: serious circus training! equally located at Santa Familia, this professional group has aerial dance classes as well as yoga and others.

Beauty Salon and Services: Casco has several options for your hair and nails. If you are interested, read this blog entry with a description of who, where and specialties here.

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Theaters and Art Galleries in Casco Viejo

The National Theater: Near Plaza Bolivar, next to the parking lot. They never publish what they have, basically you have to ask. However, they always have something interesting going on, from ballet to opera! To check out what’s going on: 262-3525.  The theatre inside is beautiful, if you are just passing by, don´t forget to visit. Normally is $2 or so to get in and get a small tour. Check out the Arco Properties Events Calendar, whenever we hear about something we post it there!

Teatro Anita Villalaz: Small theater at Plaza Francia. It used to be a court room, and when you walk in you can get the sense. Today is the favorite spot for more intimate events.  To find out what is going on, basically you have to go there and ask! 211-4020

Diablo Rosso: Located at El Colegio building by Plaza Herrera, their shows change almost every week. Tel. 228-4833

Karavan: Art from the Caribbean part of Panama (Portobelo). Located at 3rd Street, in front of the Arco Chato. 228-7177

 La Musa Art Gallery & Lounge: Exclusive Contemporary Art Gallery with a restaurant and bar. We recommend the Duck Magret or our famous New York steak. , Tel:228-1907

Casco Viejo`s NGO`s: Community

AVACA: Casco Viejo`s Neighborhood Association. Join to keep in touch with all the residents and Casco Viejo lovers. Events, recycling and more. Website. Facebook.

Fundacion Calicanto: Protection of Patrimony. Educational programs, social reintegration. Website. Facebook.

Fundacion Danilo Perez: Jazz school at Plaza Herrera by musician Danilo Perez. Transforming society through music. Website.

Fundacion Olga Sinclair: art school at Plaza Herrera by artist Olga Sinclair. Website.

APROJUSAN: After school program that keeps children out of streets and into schools. Website.

Fundacion San Felipe: local ngo in charge of San Felipe Neri`s church and convent.

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