Bello hombres y mujeres, today we are going to the jungle. Following our summer excursions (yes, it’s summer in Panama), now we go to the Other Side. El Otro Lado is the most magical little hotel in Panama. Decorated by a famous Panamanian interior designer, with help from the great taste of the owners (a mother-son duo of Spanish and Panamanian heritage) and the natural scenery, this glorious, private, hyper-luxurious hotel—with its handful of cabanas, Caribbean art, and eclectic style—is simply the classiest place in my little country.
Once you get to the mystical port of Portobello (Portobello Road in London is named after this place), filled with hundreds of years of pirate and colonial history, you cross the water in a little boat and end up at this wondrous place. The boat ride is a great prelude to what’s happening, because you literally cross to “the other side.” The owners have also made a great impact on the community, creating schools, a music center, and woodshops, so almost everything you’ll see here is locally done. If you are coming to Panama, this trip is worth making. P.S.: It’s just ninety minutes from the city.
It’s Carnival in Panama right now, and I’m freezing in New York with my girlfriend and cat. Ahhh, take me back to the tropics!
For more information, visit www.elotrolado.com.pa.
Photos: Courtesy of Miky Fabrega