Panama Hotel & Restaurant
Panama Hotel & Restaurant

Panama Hotel & Restaurant

  • Dining Style: Fine Dining
  • Website: http://www.panamahotel.com/
  • Phone: 415 457 3993x
  • Hours of Operation:
    LUNCH Monday - Friday | 11:30am - 2:30pm
    BRUNCH Sunday | 10am - 2pm
    DINNER Tuesday - Saturday | 5:30 - 9:30pm
    DINNER Sunday | 5 - 9pm
    YAPPY HOUR {pets are optional} Tuesday - Friday | 4 - 5:30pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Latin American, Mediterranean, Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: Dan Miller
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wine
  • Catering: Please contact the Panama Restaurant for further details, (415) 457-3993 or visit our website PanamaHotel.com.
  • Private Party Facilities: Please contact the Panama Restaurant for further details, (415) 457-3993 or visit our website PanamaHotel.com.
  • Private Party Contact: Fabiola Saballos 415 457 3993x120
  • Entertainment: Dine with Music every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evening. Sunday evenings during Fall and Winter. The best of jazz, R&B and contemporary sounds.
    MIDWEEK MUSIC 7 - 10pm every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
    SUNDAY MUSIC 6 - 9pm Sunday's during Fall and Winter seasons
  • Special Events: Please contact the Panama Restaurant for further details, (415) 457-3993 or visit our website PanamaHotel.com.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: B Street & Woodland Avenue
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Panama Hotel & Restaurant
The Panama Hotel and Restaurant is a historic bed & breakfast inn located in San Rafael, CA, midway between SF and California’s wine country. Our on-site restaurant offers food influenced by Latin America, the Mediterranean and California’s wine country. Featuring presentation that is simple, yet stylish—menus are prepared with the finest available organic products and highest quality ingredients from Bay Area purveyors. Beautiful surroundings offer an excellent venue for getaway weekends, weddings, receptions and private events.
The Panama is proud to present accomplished and versatile musicians as part of your dining experience. We feature local, Bay Area artists every Tues, Wed and Thurs evenings throughout the year from 7-10pm. Dinner reservations recommended.
Have Lunch, Brunch, Dinner or Yappy Hour with your "furry friend". Let us know you are coming by reserving a pet-friendly table.
If your desired time is not available, please call the Panama restaurant.
Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGreat for Brunch
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGreat for Lunch
Panama Hotel & Restaurant reviews from OpenTable diners
172 reviews since April 21, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.2
    Service4
  • Ambiance4.3
    Noise LevelModerate
95% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
great for outdoor dining (142)neighborhood gem (125)great for lunch (96)great for brunch (73)fit for foodies (56)romantic (49)special occasion (49)good for groups (45)kid-friendly (16)notable wine list (15)hot spot (5)late-night find (4)vibrant bar scene (3)scenic view (2)Show More
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Yummy food, beautiful spot! We'd never been there before and found it to be really wonderful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • A lovely evening.........
    noelbowsVIP
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    A family gathering of four and we all felt rewarded for choosing the Panama Hotel and Restaurant. I had the Seafood Salad, a favorite of mine, which once again pleased. Our grand daughter enjoyed the ceviche and fresh salmon. Also enjoyed: red and yellow beet salad. A great time at a wonderful little local gem.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • What a gem!
    KentfielddinersVIP
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    This charming cottage building with small bar and lovely outdoor patio under trees and umbrellas...they even have straw hats hung on fence to borrow...lush plants and colorful linens make this a delightful space to enjoy a meal. Then add the accomplished kitchen, a menu of great choices and a vibrant evening music scene...what more could you want, especially if its close by in a cozy neighborhood. A great lunch and brunch place, they're very accommodating for larger groups if booked ahead, and they do a terrific job for smaller private parties in the back patio. Our whole family loves it!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Opt for an Outside Table
    CAtlcVIP
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    The food and a great outdoor dining area make up for the understaffed service. Opt for an outside table if you go on one of the nights when there is live music, which is too loud if you are seated inside or even on the patio.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Atmosphere
    LiDo
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    I have been going to the Panama Hotel for years and it never fails to impress me. Recently I met a friend here for lunch and we had a lovely time. I had a Greek salad and my friend has a seafood salad. Both of us were more than satisfied with our meals and the service was excellent. The waitress was very attentive, and our water glasses were filled quickly upon request. We chose to sit inside this time, but there is a large patio area that looks quite comfortable and festive. I highly recommend Panama Hotel for an affordable meal.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    I have eaten lunch here several times and have always been pleased. I had dinner there and the wait for getting our food was 35 minutes. I don't know why it was SO slow.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Very disappointing
    Cork
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    Took ten minutes for a hostess to greet us. Had requested a nice table for celebration but was given a large table for five or six and there were four of us so we couldn't even sit and hear each other. Asked for different quiet table and they movedus to a table for four but the music was so loud in room we couldn't hear anything. Asked for table outside but they had either a very small table for two or three or a table in the back. Our waiter lost us for about twenty minutes. Asked for heater but waiter couldn't make it work and said he would get another one but he never did that. Service was very very slow Waiter was nice but couldn't even get us french fries until we were finished with our meal. Overall food was fair, service fair.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Server had an "attitude." She was not a happy camper. Ordered appetizer, enjoying it when another server announced our entrees were ready - we were NOT ready. We do not like being rushed. We specifically ordered the appetizer first and did not want everything to come at once. They close at 2:30 & at 2 they started taking down the patio umbrellas and moving tables from two large groups - it was annoying. Food was good and ample. Enjoyed the flights of 3 wines. Baja salad was very good. Husband had meatloaf sandwich, he had to take 1/2 home. He said it was very good. We would go back if in the area but will not make a special trip from Napa. Would suggest it to friends but would not highly recommend it. It is a charming venue.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • SummerlivingVIP
    Dined on 8/7/2014
    I don't review every restaurant I go to, but Panama Hotel and Restaurant deserved my time to write this review.We sat outside, we heard the great music from inside...not too loud.., the waiter was very attentive but gave us space to talk, and the food was delightful. Everyone left saying they were going back soon. What a lovely summer evening.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • NOISE
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 8/7/2014
    THE MUSIC WAS TOO LOUD. COULD NOT CARRY ON A CONVERSATION COMFORTABLY
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • SAMC
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    Great food & ambience! We ate outside & it was a beautiful night.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Perfect Lunch on the Patio
    Paiz
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    We had the BLT with avocado and the ceviche. The sandwich was perfectly prepared with vine ripe tomatoes on a grilled ciabatta roll. The ceviche was fresh and perfect for a light lunch. Our server was very attentive and gracious. The food and service were timed perfectly without feeling rushed considering we were on our lunch break. A really great spot. I would definitely return!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • funky gem
    birthdaybunch
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    Panama hotel is a quirky and wonderful neighborhood restaurant/hotel. The outdoor seating area is delightful, the food is very tasty and the service is excellent. We had a huge, juicy burger, a delicious and filling Baja salad and a hearty, healthy veggie panini sandwich. We shared a decadent brownie/ice cream dessert; one was perfect for three of us to share at lunch. Our waiter kindly refilled our ice teas tons of times and left us to chat happily away for a long time after finishing our meal. Thoroughly enjoy this place, and I eat here often.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Consistently Pleasant
    Tapper
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    You can count on the Panama Hotel for good food, service and ambience. I particularly enjoy eating outside there, but the inside is nice also.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Local Favorite
    BirdieT
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    After all these years, Panama Hotel is still delivering delicious, creative dinners with gracious service. We had dinner on a very warm evening. They moved our group from inside to outside, and brought continuous water and extra glasses of ice. The seafood salads and cioppino were perfect for the weather, paired with excellent wines by the glass. Burger was great, too. Service was friendly but discreet and unrushed. Couldn't have been better!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Our favorite spot
    GInnyVIP
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Were love the food here and dining in the patio area...outside! The fish tacos and calamari salad are great as is the colcannon. The staff is attentive without being overly so. It's a perfect spot for a meal going into San Francisco from the north bay.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Favorite outdoor dining spot
    Luv2eat
    Dined on 7/24/2014
    A favorite of ours for outdoor dining to celebrate special occasions. We enjoy the red and golden beet & arugula salad every time. My husband enjoyed the Baja seafood salad which had generous portions of seafood & I enjoyed the rack of lamb with polenta & sauteed green beans & red bell peppers. A nice bottle of a Napa chard accompanied our meal. The brownie & gelato tower & Panama sundae, both topped with the belgian bittersweet chocolate (yum!) completed our meal.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Summer outside
    Napili
    Dined on 7/20/2014
    The inside dining room looks very inviting but the outside dining area is great so we haven't made it inside yet. Maybe next time.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Saturday night
    KTK318VIP
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    We enjoyed the outdoor dining scene with starters & drinks. Server was attentive, cheery & enhanced our evening. Salad entree was great. We were happy.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • So unique!
    FooDeeVIP
    Dined on 7/15/2014
    So special! I feel transported every visit. Best chef ever! Lunch or dinner selections - all so yummy. GO THERE!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • A Favorite Spot!
    KAS1VIP
    Dined on 7/13/2014
    This is a neighborhood find that has been operating as a restaurant under Panama for the past 20 or so years, and formerly Maria's Pueblo (starting in about the 50s/60s). Excellent ambiance. Delicious seasonal food. Very off the main track. Live music occasionally. Special!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disappointing!
    foodiesandyVIP
    Dined on 7/13/2014
    The brunch was a huge disappointment. Three of the five had not dined there before and at my recommendation we ordered the polenta with eggs and sausage. The presentation was very different from previous times and the eggs and polenta were inedible. If I had not been a guest I would have complained but I did not want our host to be uncomfortable. The wait person never addressed the fact that we left most of the food.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Memorable experience
    Linda
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    My brother, sister-in-law, and I had such a wonderful dinner there on a Saturday night that we returned the next day for brunch. Great food and service in a beautiful outdoor setting both times.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great outdoor seating!
    Redhair
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    The food is always good (my favorite appetizer is the Tuna Tartar). Love the outdoor seating especially at night (they have heat lamps). Server was too slow for my liking. Luckily it won't stop me from going back again!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Food Very Good; Service Only OK
    Marylou
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    While the ambience and food at Panama Hotel are very good, our overall experience was less than good due to poor & unfriendly wait staff, which was exemplified by the host's unfriendly greeting when we arrived. We had reservations, and when we checked-in with the host there wasn't a welcome or hello, we were just handed menus and assumed we were to follow him as he led us toward an inside table. We asked if we might be seated on the patio (Panama has lovely outdoor patio seating) and were given a terse "no." I'm not sure if we'd return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A hidden gem in San Rafael
    MikeinOakland
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    I've been working in San Rafael for 12 years and never had the chance to get to this great restaurant. The staff is lovely, the ambience, with outdoor patio is great. Most important, the food is done just right! I had the pulled pork sandwich for lunch and it was one of the best I've had!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Yumyum
    Dined on 7/8/2014
    Good food. Baja salad and pablano chili were excellent. Great outdoor seating with plenty of heaters if needed. Cute and quirky
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Service fabulosity
    KismetVIP
    Dined on 7/8/2014
    Our waiter was so sensational, he was attentive, responsive, available and patient. Outstanding as was the food and environment. As always.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/6/2014
    Had a lovely family dinner in the pretty garden on a warm summer evening . Good food, nice service.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Historic hotel in San Rafael
    Maddievl
    Dined on 7/6/2014
    The Panama Hotel is a special place for a casual celebration with a few friends. With the recent summer heat, their outdoor patio was a treat. The menu is nit extensive but adequate. The food is delicious but their seafood salad while tasty was skimpy with the seafood. 3 prawns and a very small slice of salmon.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • lunch-time getaway
    rose
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    If you want to escape to Baja or anyplace south of Marin, and you only have two hours, have lunch at the Panama Hotel. Unhurried, tasty, fresh, quiet enough in the outdoor dining area to hear the fountain's music amid the banana palms. Also, some interesting wines by the glass.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Local Gem
    JackSheltonSFK
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    Eating lunch in the outdoor patio at the Panama Hotel Restaurant is sheer delight. The lunch menu, which has both, a Mexican influence and a Mediterranean influence, is broad and the very tasty dishes are beautifully served. I love the tortilla soup and the Baja salad, each of which display delicate Mexican flavors. The décor is colorful and transports me to a quiet villa in Mexico. Umbrellas and trees provide adequate shade; the chairs are very comfortable; the wait staff most friendly and efficient.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Never disappoints
    veryhappydiner
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    I go for lunch at Panama Hotel almost every Friday, meeting various friends from various parts of the Bay area. Every one I introduce to the restaurant comes again, bringing friends of her own. It's always a wonderful place to be, especially in the garden, each friend finds her favorite dish or two and won't budge from them. It's a joyful, beautiful, serene kind of place which has me looking forward to going back the minute I walk out the door. The neighborhood is also a lovely place for walking, with beautiful, old houses on tree-lined streets. Don't miss them in the fall. Don't miss them anytime.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Lovely on the patio
    LeChatVIP
    Dined on 6/25/2014
    The Panama Hotel is a true original. Comfy, tasty food, good wine, great vibes. A touch kitschy. A place to wind down and relax. Always a pleasure.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great find
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 6/24/2014
    My wife made the recommendation. She said she hadn't been there in 20 years. We enjoyed lunch with a special business colleague from France. Food service and ambiance were perfect. It will be a regular for us now.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Paulie
    Dined on 6/22/2014
    We always enjoy dinner at this family owned restaurant, the staff are delightful, and very good food. I would reccomend it.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Great standby
    EMBEE
    Dined on 6/22/2014
    This wonderful gem is in a residential neighborhood and provides a lovely setting for a leisurely lunch, brunch or quiet dinner. Highly recommend!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Still loving this restaurant.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 6/20/2014
    I've been here many times over the years and it's still my favorite place to lunch in San Rafael during warm months. The outdoor patio dining with ample umbrellas to supply shade for all who desire it is charming and the service is always warm and friendly. There is something for everyone on the varied menu.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nice out door eating
    Gourmeteater
    Dined on 6/20/2014
    Very good!,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Baja Salad is a good choice
    Marlou
    Dined on 6/15/2014
    Three of us had this salad and it was very good. One had Ceasar salad and it had plenty of chicken. One had egg as florentine and liked it. So overall everyone was happy. The wine corkage is a little steep.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.