The good life at a fair price Villa Suiza Resort in Chitré

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Villa Suiza is the brain child of Swiss-born, Ralf Siev who saw there was a need for higher-end service and amenity providers in the fast-growing city of Chitré. He came across a property with a run-down “bohío” on it when he experienced his “eureka” moment.

Villa Suiza p. 30_fmtToday, Villa Suiza Resort, built on the lot where the palm-thatched structure once languished, is a boutique hotel of only eight rooms. It boasts a high-tech, 21m pool that contains a waterfall and jacuzzi and that stays open late. The comfortable rooms are equipped with WiFi, cable, A/C and fans.

The hotel uses its own water source, crystalline well water pumped in exclusively for guests. It is a quiet place where people can reconnect with nature, while enjoying all the creature comforts from home. A maximum of 14 occupants guarantee a relaxing time.

Ristorante DaFabio, the hotel’s famous Italian eatery, offers some of the best pasta in the country. The food is prepared by Mr. Siev’s business parter, Chef Fabio, whom he met in Costa Rica and brought to Panama to begin this enterprise.

They pair have made quite a name for themselves with their venture. The list of celebrity guests includes Mel Gibson and a host of local artists and politicos. There are plans to expand the hotel to include 20 rooms. For now, it is the choice stop just off the Pan-American Highway 1 km north from the center of Chitré. Rooms cost $50 – $110 per night. For more information, call 974-5058 or visit


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