Travel + Leisure: Panama City's Newest Hotel Feels Like a Private Island Resort — Even in the Heart of the UNESCO-protected Old Town03.08.2023

By Lane Nieset

It’s not often that a UNESCO-listed district can claim a new addition. The historic quarter of Panama City, Casco Viejo (also known as Casco Antiguo), and its brick-lined streets haven’t changed much since the 17th century.

Centuries-old churches and the presidential palace brush up against colonial-style, pastel buildings with wrought-iron balconies reminiscent of Old San Juan in Puerto Rico and New Orleans. But one of the most iconic buildings in Casco Viejo is the former Union Club, built in 1917. It sat empty for more than 30 years — its abandoned shell was used as a backdrop in films like the 2008 James Bond movie “Quantum of Solace.” Now, it’s transformed into the area’s newest hotel: the Sofitel Legend Casco Viejo.


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