Panamanians always enjoy a good party! The nightlife here offers a little bit of something for everyone, from underground lairs to chic nightclubs with Panama’s “yeyecito” crowd. Most of the spots on this list are located in Casco Viejo, which in recent years has become the new epicenter of Panama City nightlife (so stay in this neighborhood if you like to party). From Sunday – Wednesday bars close at 3 am and Thursday, Friday, and Saturday bars close at 4 am. There are a few secret spots that stay open later but you’ll have to discover those for yourself 🙂
Here are the top 10 places you have to visit to get the best experience out of Panama’s nightlife.
La Tana is the current hotspot locals are flocking to for a lush club experience. They typically play a mix of reggaeton, electronic, and current top 40 music and have an exclusive table and bottle service.
Selina is where you’ll find the cool kids of Panama City sipping on cocktails and craft beer. The decor is tropical chic, utilizing lots of plants and vibrant murals splashed along the walls. They organize lots of weekly events like live salsa music, electronic music DJs, acoustic concerts, and more – so you can always count on something going on. You can also stay at Selina if you want to always be in the middle of the action.
Silo is in the basement of Selina and reminiscent of a Berlin nightclub. They bring in top electronic music DJs from all over the world as well as local acts.
Salvaje is where you’ll find affluent locals dressed to nines. It’s located in the trendy Casco Viejo historic district with luxurious, tropical touches and a view of the skyline. Besides the gorgeous rooftop, they have a multi-floor restaurant dishing out creative Japanese cuisine that rivals any world-class city.
Espacio is an amazing open-air venue with lots of events throughout the week. It’s the type of place you can chill with a local beer early on or stay and get sweaty dancing to reggaeton or electronic music.
Pantera is a super fun rooftop to start the party early. On Wednesdays – Saturdays they have a $10 all-you-can-drink-champagne happy hour from 6 pm – 10 pm. They also organize lots of entertainment throughout the week with live music, stand-up comedy, and more. After 10 pm, the place converts from dinner and drinks to full party mode.
Stringed lights, good DJ, skyline view, and trendy Panamanians and foreigners always create the perfect party atmosphere at Tantalo’s Rooftop. On Tuesday’s they have Artes Martes where they have a live artistic performance, Wednesday is Latin Night, Thursday is Ladies Night, and on Friday, Saturday, & Sunday you’ll find a trendy crowd dancing to the latest DJ mixes.
Casa Jaguar starts as a restaurant but once the clock strikes midnight, this place gets wild! The best thing about Casa Jaguar is that it has two ambiances: a large indoor area that places a mix of music and an outdoor patio with electronic music.
Chuptios 507 is Panama City’s first shot bar features over 70 creative shots ranging from fire, beer bongs, and an infamous shot incorporating a special toy. Most shots are $5 but you can also pay $20 for open shots all night so it’s a fun spot to pregame at before heading to one of the nearby nightclubs. Be sure to also stop by their ladies night every Thursday where girls drink for free from 9:30 pm to 11:30 pm.
El Sotano / El Apartamento
There’s no place like home, right? El Sotano (The Basement) and El Apartamento (The Apartment) have transformed a giant yellow house in Bella Vista into a bar and event venue. You can usually find live music on the first floor or head up to El Apartamento, which literally looks like an apartment, to listen to chill indie jams and enjoy a few drinks.
So that’s my top 10 list of nightspots to visit before you leave Panama. If you want to be steps away from the nightlife I recommend staying in Casco Viejo! Besides being able to walk home from the bar you are in the heart of the city’s cultural and dining scene. These are some of my favorite spots to stay in Casco Viejo:
Selina: Staying at Selina means you can be in a beautifully designed space without breaking the bank. The property features a rooftop pool, cinema, restaurants, a library, and a communal kitchen. The standard rooms start at $75/night but they even have cheaper options if you’re willing to share a bathroom or be in one of the dormitories.
Tantalo: Tantalo is one of the hippest boutique hotels in Casco Viejo with uniquely designed rooms and home to Panama City’s hottest rooftop bar.
American Trade Hotel: If trendy & chic design is what you’re after, this is the place for you. The American Trade Hotel is one of the few spots in Casco with a pool so you can spend the day meandering through the charming streets and then relax in the pool before a fun night out – plus the hotel is gorgeous.