Panamainfo’s Blog

Casco Viejo- On the Way to Becoming One of the Most Beautiful Spanish Colonial Neighborhoods Anywhere

I just spent a morning with some visiting relatives strolling around Casco Viejo. It was my first time in CV in about a year and I was very surprised to see all the development in less than a year. There were quite a  few new excellent souvenir shops and restaurants and most surprising of all were the number of buildings being restored. Shortly after, I read in an article in La Prensa about the hopeful new pace of restoration in CV with a quote from Ariel Espino who said that there are 800 buildings in CV and that they need 16-20 new buildings to start being restored each year for CV and that that pace has finally been hit. Indeed CV is clearly developing into what will be one of the most beautiful restored Spanish colonial sectors anywhere. As Arthur Frommer of the Frommers guides wrote recently, CV looks set to be more beautiful that San Juan Puerto Rico and will rival Cartagena.

CV has stunning bay and ocean views throughout the neighborhood as well as a delightful variety of architectural types from Spanish colonial to 1920’s Art Deco styles. And the Panamamanian and foreign investors are doing both beautiful and authentic restorations.

If you go, make sure and have some yummy ice cream in the French ice cream store, Granclement and for souvenirs check out both the beautiful Reprosa jewelry store and the Galeria de Arte Indigena, perhaps the best souvenir shop in all Panama.

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