Coronado was the place where my research for a real estate investment had led me and the place where we were heading now to check out investment properties. Keep in mind, I’ve been very focused, not on where we want to live, but where would be a good investment, which might also couple with where we’d want to holiday. Because if we want to holiday there…chances are, others would too.
This is what I’d read about it before we got there:
It’s a 1.5 hours from Panama City.
It’s 1 hour from Panama City.
It’s less than an hour from Panama City.
(I kid you not, you can find all of that information).
Coronado is a community that began as a beach getaway for Panamanians (because of some sort of proximity to Panama City) and has grown into a go-to place also for expats, international travelers, beach lovers and golfers.
It is not too far from surfing, a quaint mountain town and of course…Panama City.
What we learned from being there:
Most of the beach front is privately owned and residential. It took a bit of time to figure out the pulse of Coronado. It’s a little spread out and it doesn’t have a town centre. Most Central American towns radiate from a center square with a church and a park. I had to adjust my preconceived ideas of ‘community’. When I did, this is what I found:
– a definite, growing, thriving, healthy community of both expats and locals.
– many happy expats who were energetic entrepreneurs (most had at least 2 irons in the fire). Without exception every person we talked to who lived there was happy with their decision to move there. Glowingly so. In fact, that is true of every expat we talked to in Panama. I suppose the people who really don’t like it there, are no longer there.
- lots of access to beautiful beaches of mixed white and black volcanic sand
- a good surfing spot and surfing schools just 20 minutes away
- all the amenities you need as far as grocery stores (I counted 4), even an organic health food store, a state of the art medical clinic (need a doctor? $8/visit, need an MRI? also available)
- restaraunts in every price range. Our favourite was an open air, wood fired pizza place.
- golf…not my thing but I know it’s some of yours (we’re going to want to talk to you at some point..hint, hint)
- within less than an hour drive you can experience an adorable little town called Valle de Anton (it might deserve a short blog post all of its own). The drive there is worth the trip alone, up winding roads, vistas all around, and as you go you feel the changing air…that cool moist air that so enchanted us in Boquete. When you get there, the little market, restaraunts and mineral hot springs are fun(do take a bath, it’s only $3.00 mud for a facial included!) There are also lots of things there that we didn’t get to, like zip lining, butterfly observatory (we saw blue morphos in a walk through the rainforest…and 2 toucans!)…lots to experience. You can also get a full lunch for 5/6 dollars. A very worthy day trip.
All in all, once I started to get the hang of Coronado I could see that it has a lot going for it. There’s lots to do, either right there or a short distance away and it’s about an hour from Panama City (that was our experience…the discrepencies must be about where you start counting the time…if you’re coming from the airport it might be 1.5 hours). There’s information about a new airport though. Hato International Airport has begun recieving international flights (right now I think just with Sunwing) and is only 25 minutes from Coronado. Very civilized dahling.
Another thing I love about Coronado is the view. Well, the view from a particular condo especially. It’s of both the mountains and the ocean. How great is that? And for you golf afficianados…right on the golf course. So….we scooped it up. And with that we began our foray into investment rental properties in Panama. We hope it’s just the start. It’s our proverbial toe in the water.
That’s right…we liked it all that much. We went for it.
If you’re interested in lovely views, warm weather, beautiful pools, beaches, surfing, golf, day trips into cute little villages…let us know. We have just the place for you to stay. When we get it up on Airbnb we’ll send you a link.
Here are pictures of Coronado.
First up….pictures from the condo we bought. Check out that view!
And in the other direction…
That’s right golfers…looking down from the balcony to the golf course. Just walk out the door.
This is not ours, it’s a model. But it is exactly like this. We even bought the furniture.
Imagine waking up to that view!
The consultation team. We brought our lawyer, our interior decorator and our accountant…aka friends…to discuss the ins and outs of this arrangement. Here they are consulting, in the living room.
Moving on…our favourite coffee shop. Giant cappuccinos for $2 (if I remember correctly). Also captured here is our favourite realtor.
She also owns guest accommodations that she rents out. Rooms with bathroom and small kitchenette. Home away from home. This is the backyard and what we saw each morning as we came out of our room. Paradise.
Our favourite local restaurant with open fire pizza oven, a great menu, open air and sangria!
From the balcony of a condo we stayed in…black and white sand. I didn’t like the look of it in pictures but this is really soft sand. Very cool. I’ve never seen black sand before.
More beach shots. Dave had fun with these…
And this one up to the mountains behind…doctored yes, because it was nearing night but I love it. Maybe it’s because I miss clouds so much. When we got back to Qatar to go through our photos, my phone had SO many random photos of clouds.