Driving into Panama City from the airport, I noticed a distinct shape emerging on the Punta Pacifica (a peninsula filled with towers that juts out into the Panama Bay). The shallow arc was that of the Trump Ocean Club rising, a 70-story condominium/hotel/condohotel/retail building. It is actually a surprisingly beautiful piece of architecture and should turn out to be an amazing project if executed as planned. The Trump project is a testament to the level of sophistication that can be found in Panama City, a city that continually shatters the frequent stereotype of Central American cities as being squalor-ridden slums.
Not only is the project well-designed, it is performing well financially. Upon a recent visit to the sales office, I was told that they are 80% sold and haven’t seen too many people back out since the beginning of the global recession. They are still booking sales as interest in Panama is growing in worldwide markets. Panama blogger Sam Taliaferro provides info from their conference call to investors and seems to have a positive outlook and even Ivanka has recently been touting Panama as one of the company’s best markets. Perhaps there is more to Panama than the canal.