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Hospedaje Casco Viejo

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Hostelz.com's Review
Casco Viejo is basic, sure -- but sometimes basic is good. In this case being basic allows it to undercut its competitors on price while still creating a comfortable stay in a city where it can be expensive to stay.

The Location

The hostel is pretty central in Panama City's old town. It's a short walk to the water and its beautiful nightime cityscape, several good restaurants, and the local party hostel, which non-guests can drink at, but for a premium price. A taxi to the bus station will cost you, but the airport is a little further outside the city. As with anywhere in Panama City, don't walk around alone at night as plenty of muggings have occurred in this area.

Rooms and Bathrooms

All rooms are large and spacious, with the large dorms having a choice of bunks and singles. The beds are steel-tube-framed, with ladders on every bunk -- something that is surprisingly rare in hostels -- and all sheets and pillows provided. There are also free towels if you ask for them and steel lockers for every bed. Many rooms on the first floor have large balconies, which are great for relaxing or having a sociable drink in the evening. It is by no means a party hostel, but being at the bottom end of the price range, it tends to attract a sociable crowd.

There are three bathrooms, all separate, which means privacy but often means you can be waiting for one to become free. There is plenty of room to hang stuff and change (if they are all free, the downstairs shower is the best).

Common Spaces

There are not a great deal of common areas in Casco Viejo but there is a decent sized kitchen for cooking meals and a courtyard where the free breakfast of bread, jam, peanut butter, and bananas is laid out. On top of this there is a small seating area in reception where the one computer is kept. There is free Wi-Fi throughout the hostel.


If you're looking for a cheap place to stay in Panama City, Casco Viejo comes highly recommended. It is basic but it is clean, comfortable, and close to the action and party hostels. The staff are friendly and will help you out with whatever advice you need for your stay in Panama.

Exclusive Hostelz.com Review
November 2011

Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
How is Hospedaje Casco Viejo rated on other websites?
Not listed on HostelsClub.
Hospedaje Casco Viejo Reviews from the Web
Hostelz.com Guest Reviews
5   Great Hostel We had a private room. We arrived at 6 in the morning as we took the night bus in and they still let us check into our room at that time! We also made a mistake on the initial booking with dates and they let us change them without a fuss. Great staff. Very helpful. Breakfast was good too, crunchy peanut butter or jam on toast with a coffee.  , age 26, UK ()
4   Great hostel big spacious dorms with good ventilation and a nice veranda. The bathrooms not so clean but ok for those used to the backpacker life. Private rooms also, quite nice and very cheap. Nice staff who helped us with all kinds of arrangement. For example we found a place to stay in San Blas with a guy named Elias Perez through the hostel. We will definitely recommend both this hostel and the place we stayed in San Blas. And the location is perfect for walking around in the charming old part of Panama city.  , Norway ()
4  A good place to stay for the adventure/budget traveler in an amazing and very old and poor neighborhood filled with real people, incredible spanish colonial architecture and major Panama history. For $12 i got a private room with a cold water shower that was clean and secure. even though there was no outside window in my room the air was stirred by an adequate ceiling fan. The host/owner Ricardo Garces has done a great job with renovation. There is a modern common kitchen and nice courtyard area, and TV and computer with internet in the lobby/entranceway. the hostel is right next to the church that houses the famous Altar de Oro and offers mass everyday. Restaurants and stores are few and far between but coming along with the discovery and restoration/development of Casco Viejo and San Felipe. Ricardo does the updating of reservations himself and responds with a confirmation email. Twenty-four hour door access is available and Ricardo can arrange a taxi for that pre-dawn trip to Tocumen Airport if you need it. They don't take credit cards. You can have your laundry done for you by a local person who picks up and delivers. The beds are good by Panamanian standards and fairly new as the place has only been open a year. enjoy!  ()

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