Published on December 4th, 2010 | by Mark Chesnut

SNEAK PEAK: Westin Playa Bonita Panama

A model guest room at the Westin Playa Bonita Panama, a resort on the Pacific coast.

It may not be opening until September, but during my current trip to Panama, I was able to pay a visit to the site of the Westin Playa Bonita, a new resort rising along the Pacific coast about 20 minutes from Panama City. Bern Hotels & Resorts — the Panama City-based hotelier that already owns multiple upscale properties, including two InterContinentals, a Le Meridien (see my review here), a Crowne Plaza and a Holiday Inn — is eager to show off what this 611-room resort will offer when it opens. Guests here will be able to dine at six different restaurants, toast at two bars, indulge at a spa or perhaps meet in the 14,000 square feet of event space.
Since it’s still under construction, of course, it wasn’t possible for me to get the full effect of what this hotel will be like. But the landscaping will most likely be as lush and beautiful as the adjacent InterContinental Playa Bonita, and the open lobby area — while not yet finished — is already bathed in open-air breezes from the Pacific Ocean. I did get to visit a couple model guest rooms, which feature lovely wood furnishings, as well as stylish slate walls in the bathroom. The ocean-view rooms have, as you might guess, an inspiring view of the water, while rooms on the other side feature large picture windows that perfectly frame the lush vegetation of the surrounding land. With its proximity to Panama City, this property will — like its neighbor, the InterContinental — most likely make for one of the most convenient upscale resort getaways from the nation’s capital. Certainly worth considering for your next beach vacation later this year.

Watch this space: Here’s a rendering of what the Westin Playa Bonita will look like. 

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About the Author

The founder and editor of, Mark has more than 15 years of experience as a writer, editor and manager. He's worked with some of the biggest consumer, in-flight and travel trade publishers that cover Latin America.

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