Punta Pacifica, Panama City is perhaps the most luxurious piece of real estate in Central America, home of the region’s tallest buildings, and with its own Dubai-style man-made islands. This article contains affiliate links, where we make a small commission if you purchase anything after clicking, at no extra cost to you.
Moving to Panama and have some cash to splash? If you want an exclusive neighborhood, where better than the waterfront of Punta Pacifica in Panama City?
A subdivision of San Francisco, Punta Pacifica sits next to the financial district and a mere 15 minutes from Tocumen Airport. Built on the reclaimed mudflats that make up most of the coastline around here, Punta Pacifica, long known as one of Panama City’s entertainment and retirement quarters, is now one of Panama’s (and Central America’s) most exclusive communities. In fact, during the early-2000s development boom, realtors even touted Punta Pacifica as the “new Dubai” of the Americas, and for good reason.
This ostentatious cluster of high-end condos juts out from the mainland and dominates the Panama City waterfront.
These high-rises huddle around their sail-shaped big brother, the JW Marriott; the tallest building in Central America. The hotel boasts a casino, condominiums, restaurants, and entertainment venues, making it a perfect spot for entertainment lovers and business professionals alike. Other notable buildings in Punta Pacifica include the Ocean Two and Ocean One towers, which offer stunning ocean views and luxurious amenities.
On the tip of Punta Pacifica is a bridge connecting Panama City to the Ocean Reef Islands. Another nod to Dubai, these two artificial islands house a collection of luxury condo residences with open areas surrounding a marina. These will be the height of exclusivity and the only man-made islands of their kind in Latin America, making them a prime location for those who want to live in the lap of luxury.
Back on the mainland, Punta Pacifica offers a safe and luxurious living experience.
There are world-class medical facilities, amenities, amusements, and services all within easy reach, including a Super 99 supermarket for the budget-minded among us.
The sidewalks are well-maintained, making it one of the most walkable areas in the city. You can gaze up at the skyscrapers in Punta Pacifica free from any fear of injury. How so? Well, when exploring on foot in Panama City, you learn to do so while staring at the ground. You’re keeping an eye out for the inevitable potholes, open drains, and unfinished wiring and cables out to trap you. But not in Punta Pacifica! Here, the sidewalks are complete. I can walk about in safety at last!
To the west, in neighboring Punta Paitilla, is Multicentro, and to the north is Multiplaza. Both have everything you’d expect from large, modern malls, including regular outlets and more exclusive brands, movie theaters, restaurants, and play areas. Oh, and AC that’s so good to walk in on a sweltering PTY afternoon.
The surrounding area is also known for its kosher food options, with restaurants, supermarkets, and bakeries offering plenty of choices.
Jeffrey’s Bakery is always worth a visit, with nice home-baked bread and pastries, and its own in-house cafe. There are also vegan and organic outlets, including Organica Store. It’s easy to find food options that suit your dietary preferences, whatever they may be.
Everywhere is kid/family-friendly and super-safe. Parque Paitilla is the perfect place for families to spend an afternoon. The park has plenty of good shade and play areas with a great ocean and city views. And if relaxing on the shore and watching the sunset isn’t your thing, there’s plenty of nightlife to explore beyond Via Italia towards Avenue Balboa. Happy hours galore over that way! Just keep an eye on the ground, as you’ll be back in the land of potholes and missing drain covers. Where the heck do the drain covers all go, anyway?
If you’re considering making Punta Pacifica your home, there are plenty of realtors with portfolios of condos awaiting your perusal. And if you’re not ready to commit, you can always try out the area with a VRBO or Airbnb rental. For the price of a hotel room, you can find a nice condo with an ocean view. From there, you can enjoy the area while weighing up the pros and cons of a permanent move.
One of the major cons of living in Punta Pacifica is its high cost of living.
The neighborhood is one of the most expensive areas in Panama City, and the cost of housing, food, and other necessities can be prohibitively high for many.
Another potential downside of living in Punta Pacifica is its lack of cultural diversity. The area is largely inhabited by wealthy expatriates and Panamanians. As such, it may not offer the same level of cultural richness and diversity as other neighborhoods.
Despite these drawbacks, Punta Pacifica remains one of the most desirable neighborhoods in Panama City. It offers a luxurious lifestyle and stunning ocean views. With its suburb amenities, proximity to the city’s financial district, and world-class shopping/dining options, it’s an ideal location for those seeking a high-end urban lifestyle.