The Panama Hotel Restaurant

4.3
1664 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Great for Outdoor Dining
  • Great for Lunch
The Panama Hotel 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.
Dining Style
Fine Dining
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Cuisines
Contemporary American, Latin American, Mediterranean
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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
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Phone number
(415) 457-3993
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Payment options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
Dan Miller
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Private party facilities
Please contact the Panama Restaurant for further details, (415) 457-3993 or visit our website PanamaHotel.com.
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Private party contact
Kani Kido: (415) 457-3993 ext. 120
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Catering
Please contact the Panama Restaurant for further details, (415) 457-3993 or visit our website PanamaHotel.com.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
B Street & Woodland Avenue
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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
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Special events & promotions
Please contact the Panama Restaurant for further details, (415) 457-3993 or visit our website PanamaHotel.com.
Additional
Bar Dining, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wine
What 1664 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.2
service
4.5
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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5.0Dined 2 days ago

Panama Hotel never disappoints. We spent a delightful summer afternoon having lunch on the patio. My friends (always) have fried calamari and I (always) have the Baja salad with chicken. We were able to linger; no one rushed us. We only had to get up to adjust the sun umbrellas. We left feeling happy and refreshed. Highly recommended.

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3.0Dined 4 days ago

Service was slow. The salmon was smothered with a cream sauce and root vegetables -- too heavy and especially too heavy for an August meal.

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4.0Dined 5 days ago

Terrific food, except for dessert which was eh. Very friendly staff, but service itself was very inattentive. Beautiful sitting on the outside patio. Charged corkage on 2 bottles despite buying 1 bottle. Still, a pretty fair price for the quality of the meal.

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3.0Dined 5 days ago

I love the food and atmosphere of this restaurant. However, in this visit our particular waiter was very unprofessional. The restaurant was far from busy when we were dining yet our waiter stood around near the kitchen doing nothing for extended periods of time. He never came to check on us to see how our meal was or if we needed anything else. When our meals arrived, he practically threw the plates on our table. Mine plate in particular teetered precariously on the edge of the table. Following the meal, we had to ask to see a dessert menu. We then had to wait at least 15 minutes after finishing our dessert before we could ask the waiter to bring the check. Again, during that time he just seemed to be hiding in a corner of the restaurant near the kitchen and bar, inattentive to the needs of the diners. When the bill finally arrived, he literally tossed it on to the table. Your customers deserve better.

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3.0Dined 6 days ago

Food was a little better than average. Portions are large. Most appetizers, salads could be a small meal. Patio was pleasant though a bit buggy.

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5.0Dined 6 days ago

Always love this place, particularly Renaldo the server!!!!!

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4.0Dined on August 9, 2018

Great atmosphere, good food, live music, and friendly staff!

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5.0Dined on August 7, 2018

I recently had lunch with two friends from out-of-town at the Panama Hotel. What a great experience! One of my friends is disabled and uses a walker-getting to our table was very easy and the staff was helpful. The food was fresh and delicious-exactly the thing we were looking for-and the atmosphere was relaxing. Thank you for providing such a great dining spot!

Judy P@D'Vine Dining Catering, Novato

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3.0Dined on August 6, 2018

The restaurant is like an old friend-always reliable

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5.0Dined on August 5, 2018

Always enjoy dining here!

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5.0Dined on August 5, 2018

Eggs on huevos racheros a little undercooked & the salsa kind of bland. Delicious potatoes. Fruit just ok. Usually love everything here so maybe an off day. Delightful spot. Equator coffee. Super wait staff.

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5.0Dined on August 5, 2018

Great outside seating on a warm night. Good variety of creatively prepared foods. Good wine list. Fast and friendly service.

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4.0Dined on August 5, 2018

The only complaint we had was that the service was more than slow. It appeared that there were only two waiters for the whole restaurant on a Saturday night! Have not had this problem in the past.

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2.0Dined on August 4, 2018

Horrible service. Our waiter was a grumpy jerk and it took a good 15 min for him to greet us and get us a drink.

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5.0Dined on August 2, 2018

Outstanding! What a find. It is a must try. I had the Crab and Avocado starter and the beet salad. It was amazing. The patio is just lovely. It is in the middle of a quiet, charming neighborhood. The hotel looks so inviting. The staff was attentive and professional. It is a must try. I will be back.

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5.0Dined on July 31, 2018

Such a lovely place...wonderful servers, friendly greeter, great little bar, choice of inside cozy or patio in good Marin weather. A varied menu leaning toward spicy dishes but for those of us with a palate that cannot take, other good choices. You never feel rushed, it's quiet enough to have good conversations, their music nights are super....a jewel for us locals.

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4.0Dined on July 31, 2018

We enjoyed a lovely afternoon lunch on the sunny patio. Excellent service. Good fish tacos and Dungeness crab on half an avocado. A very pleasant birthday celebration!

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5.0Dined on July 28, 2018

Wonderful food. Love the ambiance. Can't wait to eat there again.

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3.0Dined on July 28, 2018

Limited menu and limited wine list.

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4.0Dined on July 28, 2018

Always a pleasure! We dine here about once a month. We keep returning because the food and service are always very good. On our most recent visit, the salmon dish was outstanding. The crab and avocado appetizer is a favorite, as is the burger with most excellent french fries. In the summer. we enjoy being seated on the back patio. On a rainy winter evening, indoor dining is very cozy.

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4.0Dined on July 27, 2018

I like the changes to the menu - more flexibility in what and how much you can order. Only issue for me is I can't eat fresh garlic and not very much on the menu that was flexible enough to accommodate that request.

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3.0Dined on July 27, 2018

Same as before. Good and enjoyed the music. That's all I have at this time. Fifty words is too much - Keep it Simple.

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3.0Dined on July 23, 2018

This was my second visit to the Panama Hotel dining room in recent weeks. My first visit with 3 friends was very enjoyable with perfect weather and a table in the patio area. We all tried the crabmeat in avocado and it was quite tasty and the portions were large enough for our 'girls' lunch'. I decided to take a friend there for her birthday lunch as she had never seen the place and we went there last Monday. My friend had the caesar salad with prawns and the prawns were rather badly overcooked while I had the colcannon and found the Irish potato and leek pancake somewhat mushy and not at all the crisp pancake I was expecting. The ambience is very nice at this place and we spent quite a while at our table talking, so that part was very enjoyable, but the food definitely leaves something to be desired, on this occasion anyway.

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4.0Dined on July 23, 2018

GreT time. We both had the colcannon and were very impressed with the presentation and the way the chef updated a very old classic for today’s palate

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5.0Dined on July 22, 2018

Wonderful experience, as usual! Service is impeccable as usual!

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5.0Dined on July 22, 2018

We had a very nice table outside for brunch. The food was very good. The service was good and not overbearing.

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5.0Dined on July 22, 2018

We have been going to Panama Hotel Restaurant for years. The food and service are always excellent. The outdoor patio is great year round.

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5.0Dined on July 20, 2018

The Panama is the restaurant i go to each year on my birthday.
The food is very fresh and tasty.
I absolutely love the ambiance and the patio seating. I feel like I asm away on vacation. It never disappoints!

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5.0Dined on July 18, 2018

This is my favorite restaurant in Marin. I love that it's in a neighborhood and has that down home relaxed neighborhood vibe. ( I especially like the thoughtfulness of the sun hats out in the patio for those of us who need shade during lunch!) All of the staff is fabulous and really cares for you
( especially Kani, Josh and Linda!!!) and the live music at night has a wide range of the best musicians in Marin. A toast to the owners who consider that live music is important and because of that there is a fan base for people coming to hear the music and also having a great dinner. Along with the music I think the food is the highlight of this place - great varied menu and always delicious. I know I need to try the other items but the salmon dish is my favorite and I have it every time. If you are looking for a intimate, friendly, low key restaurant come to the Panama!

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5.0Dined on July 18, 2018

LOVE The Panama! Great atmosphere. Delicious food. Attentive, kind, friendly and professional staff! It's a neighborhood favorite!

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5.0Dined on July 17, 2018

I have been to the Panama Hotel for both lunch and dinner many times. It is one of my favorite restaurants in Marin. The only drawback is the parking situation but it is worth having to sometimes walk a block or two.

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2.0Dined on July 15, 2018

The Panama has never been amazing but used to feel more like they cared. Food is so so and the service is terrible. I think we are done giving it a try.

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5.0Dined on July 15, 2018

Everything tasted even better than usual! I love it when a good restaurant keeps striving to improve even more. The Panama is a great neighborhood restaurant!

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4.0Dined on July 15, 2018

lovely ambience for friends to have dinner. Food good, service good, ambience lovely.
Local gem

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5.0Dined on July 14, 2018

It was wonderful. The outside patio is very charming and the food is very good

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4.0Dined on July 13, 2018

We drive over from Berkeley to eat at the Panama Hotel. Nice ambiance. Friendly staff. Great food. Music: Todos Santos perfect for the venue.

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3.0Dined on July 2, 2018

The place is cute, ambiance nice. Food was bland, nothing special.

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4.0Dined on July 2, 2018

Panama Hotel has been a go-to place for me for many years.

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3.0Dined on July 1, 2018

The well prepared food was offset unsatisfactory service all around which was indifferent at best and at times unfriendly. The hostess was unwelcoming. Our original waiter took forever to appear and was then replaced by one who seemed almost resentful. He reached across our table several times instead of coming around. This was the first time I have encountered poor service in all the many times I’ve dined at the restaurant. Definitely, an “off” and off-putting night at The Panama Hotel! I was embarrassed as I was hosting a birthday dinner for a close friend.

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3.0Dined on July 1, 2018

Server was not very attentive.

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