The Safest Hotels to Stay in Casco Viejo

Even though I’ve traveled all over the world, both solo & with friends: I still had some hesitation before planning a trip to Panama.  Anytime I’m visiting a country for the first time, I think safety concerns are top-of-mind.  Particularly for female travelers.  And it’s nice to hear from other travelers, where they felt the safest….especially when you’re talking about a big place, like Panama City.  The neighborhood I felt the safest in, by FAR ~ was the gorgeous & historic Casco Viejo.  Here, we’ll discover the “The Safest Hotels to Stay in Casco Viejo.

The Safest Hotels to Stay in Casco Viejo, Photo Guide to Casco Viejo in Panama, Girl Who Travels the World

I took this shot right outside my hotel in Casco Viejo: the Central Hotel Panama. Most rooms have balconies overlooking a gorgeous plaza…..I LOVED this hotel!!

If You’re Deciding Between Staying in Casco Viejo or Downtown Panama City: My first two nights, I stayed at the Hotel RIU Plaza, in downtown Panama City. Though it was a nice hotel with a gorgeous pool ~ I did NOT enjoy walking around this area. Sidewalks were narrow, & there are lots of cars & busy streets that give it a more hectic feel….compared to Casco Viejo’s wide, VERY pedestrian-friendly streets, that encourage walking, strolling, & shopping. 

 

I also didn’t feel terribly safe walking at night downtown.  But in Casco Viejo, it was a totally different story.  This is a busy nightlife area, with armed guards on most street corners, & lots of people out-and-about at all times of day.  Simply in terms of safety & easy sight-seeing: Casco Viejo beats downtown, hands-down.  Plus, it’s a much more beautiful, historic area vs. the countless high-rises downtown.

Nightlife in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

This photo helps show why Casco Viejo is such a safe place to stay in Panama City: it’s well-lit at night, with wide, pedestrian-friendly streets ~ & lots of people both walking, & enjoying outdoor dining.

 Map of Casco Viejo Hotels

Casco Viejo is about 25-35 minutes from Panama City’s International Airport, making the drive time virtually identical to reaching downtown.  

PTY (International Airport)

Central Hotel ($176)

Hotel La Compania ($315)

Tantalo Hotel (Great Rooftop Bar)

La Concordia Boutique Hotel ($175)

 Overview of Great Hotels in Casco Viejo

There aren’t many huge chain hotels in Casco Viejo ~ which in my opinion, is a plus.  All hotels below are some version of a boutique-hotel, ranging from 9-rooms (the hip Tantalo) to 135-rooms (Central Hotel…where I stayed).  Prices range from under $100/night to just $300/night, for one of Panama’s finest hotels. 

This is a good place to splurge, as your money goes far.

Where to Stay in Casco Viejo, Nightlife in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

The lobby of the Central Hotel Panama is refined & elegant, with doors that open onto bustling Independence Square. I felt VERY safe here!!

  • Central Hotel Panama ($176+/night) = Elegant Hotel with a Perfect Location in Casco Viejo’s Main Square.  If you want a hotel where A) You feel totally safe, & B) You can step outside & walk to great restaurants & shops: stay here.  The staff is attentive & welcoming, & their ground-floor lobby is a lovely place to take a break & people-watch.  They’ve also got a rooftop pool & the COMFIEST beds!  Splurge here for a larger room, or one with a balcony…as their basic rooms are a little small.  

This Hotel is Perfect For: People who want to be steps from great restaurants & shopping.

  • Hotel La Compania, in Hyatt’s Unbound Collection ($315+) = The Most Luxurious, Historic Hotel in Casco Viejo.  This hotel sets the bar for luxury in Panama City ~ & it’s “walled-in” feel provides the ultimate in terms of safety & security.  Hyatt’s Unbound Collection reflects its most special properties around the world: & La Compania is no exception.  Their 88 rooms have authentic stone walls & exposed wood beams…combining an “Old World” feel with modern luxuries like Nespresso machines & smart TV’s.  Plus, they offer FIVE restaurants, including a stylish rooftop bar (with a rooftop pool) & an incredible spa.  And don’t forget to check out their library: which was once part of the city’s first university.  LOTS of history here!! 

This Hotel is Perfect For: Those seeking the ultimate in Panamanian LUXURY.

  • La Concordia Boutique Hotel ($176+) = Another Great Rooftop Bar + Large, Elegant Rooms.  Set in a beautiful 19th-century building, staying here is more like staying with family ~ as there are just 10 rooms.  And each is styled completely uniquely; they’re more spacious than the average room, & very elegant (they also offer family suites that are even larger)!  Their upstairs, triangular-shaped rooftop bar is a great place to take in sunset views of the city & enjoy a cocktail. 

This Hotel is Perfect For: Families seeking larger rooms.

  • Tantalo Hotel ($80+/night) = Hip 9-Room Hotel with Large, Colorful Rooms + an AMAZING Rooftop Bar!  This is a great spot for the younger crowd…or anyone who simply wants to walk upstairs for their entertainment.  Their rooftop bar & restaurant is one of the best in town, & will give you plenty of amazing photo opps.  Rooms here are large & colorful, many with sofas & seating areas ~ + lots of modern, bold artwork. 

This Hotel is Perfect For: Young couples or solo travelers…without kids.

The Safest Places to Stay in Casco Viejo in Panama City, Girl Who Travels the World

Funky, eclectic, & bold: that describes rooms at the Tantalo Hotel!

Nightlife in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

The Tantalo is a hip place for the younger crowd to stay ~ & their rooftop bar is very popular.

“The Historic District is filled with so many cute shops, hotels, & rooftop restaurants. We loved the historic vibe! And we loved our stay at Tantalo Hotel.  Appreciated the art, hospitality, & food. The rooftop bar has fantastic city views & makes for a fun-filled night. While we saw children at the main restaurant, I would mark this spot as best without kids.”

 

– Heather Chance

 Photos of My Hotel: Central Hotel

The Safest Places to Stay in Panama City, Girl Who Travels the World

Returning to Central’s gorgeous lobby is a welcome relief after exploring the city…

Take a Walking Tour of Casco Viejo in Panama, Girl Who Travels the World

This exterior shot of the hotel offers a view towards the church that presides over Independence Square.

Photo Guide to Casco Viejo in Panama, Girl Who Travels the World

One of the reasons I loved Central Hotel so much is because of their gorgeous rooftop pool ~ with amazing views of the nearby church + downtown.

Take a Walking Tour of Casco Viejo in Panama, Girl Who Travels the World

The lobby has gorgeous doors that open onto the lively street scene outside….

Check prices at Central Hotel Panama.

Photos of La Concordia Boutique Hotel

The Safest Hotels to Stay in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

Rooms at La Concordia are large & comfortable, with old-world touches like chandeliers & free-standing tubs.

Nightlife in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

And their beautiful rooftop bar & restaurant is just steps away if you stay here….Photo by Trip.com

La Concordia in Panama City’s old-quarter is a real find. It mixes old-world charm with modern touches really well. The rooms are great ~ each has its own style & they’re super comfortable. The staff are amazing too, always ready to help. And you’ve got to check out the rooftop bar ~  views over the city are awesome.

 

Totally recommend staying here if you’re in the area.”

 

– Michael Schmid, on a Family Vacation

 Photos of Luxurious Hotel La Compania

Hotel La Compania, The Safest Hotels to Stay in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

The grounds of Hotel La Compania are quiet, tranquil, & utterly safe. The hotel is set in three different 17th-century buildings.

Hotel La Compania, The Safest Hotels to Stay in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

Rooftop pool at sunset. Photo by The Points Guy.

Hotel La Compania, The Safest Hotels to Stay in Casco Viejo, Girl Who Travels the World

Wine taste in their private cellar at Restaurant 1739, surrounded by vaulted brick walls & stained glass windows…

“I recently had a 3-day stay at Hotel La Compania & had such an amazing experience. From the moment I stepped into this hotel, I was captivated by its beautiful decorations & well-thought-out architecture. It’s evident that every corner was designed with care & precision, creating an ambiance that truly reflects the history of Panama ~ with perfect blending of modern luxury. Service is impeccable & staff are so friendly & helpful. And to top it off, food in their 5 restaurants was an absolute treat to the palate. This isn’t just a hotel ~ it’s a destination hotel in Panama.”

 

– Nicole Vahlas

The Safest Places to Stay in Casco Viejo

The Safest Places to Stay in Panama City, Girl Who Travels the World

One more great option: American Trade Hotel & Hall.

For one more great, safe hotel option in Casco Viejo: check out 50-room American Trade Hotel & Hall ($230+/night).  Rooms are modern & sleek, great for business travelers.  And they’ve got a sophisticated lobby, a fun 1920’s jazz bar (great for solo travelers looking to meet people!), a delicious international restaurant, + a rooftop pool & bar.

xoxo Noelia 

Read Next: Bocas del Toro Travel FAQ

Discover more from Girl Who Travels the World

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading