The Panama Hotel Restaurant

4.5
1782 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
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.
What 1782 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.4
service
4.5
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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UB
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food, great service. We celebrated what would have been my Mom's 101st birthday. The Panama hotel restaurant was one of her favorites and the management remembered her fondly and treated us very well.

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l
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Didn't know you could reserve specific tables ahead of time. We were told we couldn't sit at the one we requested as it had been "taken". That table remained without guests the entirety of our time there.

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JB
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Will definitely be going back here. Was wonderful.

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C
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

A fun place for brunch. Would like to try for lunch and/ or dinner. Fabulous roast potatoes

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ET
Phoenix
2 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Absolutely charming place with wonderful food and service! Would go back anytime!

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SC
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

I would, but beware the front desk staff if you use Open Table. Be SURE to insist that they sign you in with Open Table. My husband arrived earlier than I did, and only later did I find out that the gal was challenged to find the reservation in the OT system. So she just said "well I have a table open, so I'll just seat you." Then I got a "where were you last night for your reservation" scolding email from Open Table. I value my reputation on OpenTable, so unraveling it was worth it, but I shouldn't have had to do it. They have made it right, so all is good now!

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OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 2

Very noisy and crowded. Good quality ingredients prepared poorly and without seasoning.

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OT
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I took my wife for Valentines dinner. The restaurant was appropriately decorated and our service was excellent. Our choices from the very nice menu were also exceptional. We love the ambience of the place and will continue to visit in the future.

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CA
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is a local gem, hoping that Valentine's Day would be perfect and it was!! Food was wonderful, service above & beyond, ambiance just what was required for the special romantic occasion it was. No pressure to vacate our table as it was full with customers waiting. Can't wait to go back again!!
I've already encouraged friends to check it out!!

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RK
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere and the food was delicious. The raviolis were so good I’d order again but I need to try other entrees

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ES
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The Panama Hotel restaurant is like going on a mini vacation with great food,

wonderful service and a charming ambience.

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SY
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

The restaurant offers a lovely setting for a leisurely meal surrounded by light, vintage art and photos. The food was excellent.

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MT
1 review
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Based solely on this occasion, I can’t really say that I would recommend the PH, in spite of having a lot going for it. While the food was excellent, the service was slow and inattentive.

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LD
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 5

The server was chewing gum!! She neglected our table. She didn’t ask if we enjoyed our meal until we were done., 40 minutes later. The food was fine, but the shrimp on the Baja Salad were tough and tasted as if they were reheated. The others at my table enjoyed their food.

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S
San Francisco
62 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Birthday. Told them it was my friends birthday. They did nothing to celebrate it. No cake no candle unlike other places

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j
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Warm and cozy environment. Live music played at a level where you can have a conversation without raising your voice or strain to hear. Very tasty food. Small, yet well chosen wine list. Definitely will return.

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GD
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on January 29, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

When they forget your hot entree it’s a problem. Waiter never had the courage to admit and when it finally arrived- topping was missing:-(
It’s a wonderful place with very good food just a bad experience this visit.

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OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on January 28, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Generous portions. Entree salads imaginative and tasty. Excellent Crab/avocado appetizer.

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t
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 5

My guest mine was barely passable with underdone poached eggs swimming in water (it's really not difficult to drain them with a slotted spoon) and 3 very small, underdone sausages. Not up to your usual standard, Panama!

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Panama Hotel Restaurant never disappoints. I always get the chicken tortilla soup and it’s always delish! The wine selection is amazing and everything on the menu is made to order and fresh.

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N
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious and varied menu. Great service. Beautiful setting. Wish I could’ve eaten more!

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

I think they should give a piece of cake for birthday
celebration.

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DM
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on January 23, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Fun place. Sat in main room where the band was playing. A little loud for us. Patio is much better. Would come back in a heartbeat. Our waiter was also the bartender and he was alone. Suggest they get more servers.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 21, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

I took my girlfriend for a birthday dinner and let them know. there was no acknowledgment of her birthday. My food, a seafood salad was good but instead of light dressing they gave me no dressing. Her food was a vegetable pasta and it was dripping in oil to the point she asked them to drain it off. There prices are reasonable but the food wasn't worth it.

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MH
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Ambiance is charming and location is good in neighborhood setting but the food, while attractively served was nothing special. One delicious offering is the lemon tart, also bread was fine! I recommend this place but just be careful when ordering. I was disappointed with Poblano Chile.

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MK
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Service was slow to get going, but when the waiter did show up, he was very good, and things went well after that.
Everyone was happy with their food. Two of us had pork chops, one had the seafood salad, one
had dungeness crab stuffed avocado, and I had the roast salmon with beurre blanc sauce.
Deserts were also good.

The wine list is not large, but it covers the basics pretty well.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

We arrived at 8:15pm
We DIDhave dinner there tonight

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CF
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

While the menu reads of classic american faire, the food is very, very good and the atmosphere, although a bit on the loud side is great for date night or a night out with friends. Love that it's in my neighborhood!

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JA
1 review
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love Panama Hotel Restaurant (and hotel). It is a gem tucked away from the rest of San Rafael. Particularly great that my middle-schooler can walk there no problem ! Great food, good selection, great ambiance. Thanks !

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L
Los Angeles
12 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was delicious!

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JA
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

My card was overcharged 2 days ago.. still not correct!
Lunch was wonderful, 3rd visit .. will return.

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M
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I've been dining at the Panama Hotel for over 25 years. It has consistently been a friendly, welcoming restaurant with delicious food. I live in Sonoma County, so it is a great location to meet friends from the east bay or SF.

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AP
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Excellant food ! Prices are reasonable. Pleasant staff.

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H
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

I've enjoyed the Panama Hotel everytime I have eaten there. Most recently, I enjoyed hearing Todos Santos play while enjoying dinner.

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As always, a great evening.... Wendy Fitz and her trio were great entertainment for the evening.... The food excellent, and the staff the best!!
Thank you....

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MH
San Francisco
38 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Every meal at the Panama Hotel Restaurant provides a wonderful experience and incredible meal. Always a treat to visit!

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m
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on January 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Panama Hotel has been my favorite restaurant in Marin County for over 35 years. I feared it would change after it changed ownership last year but it remains as good as always. Thank you to Chef, the Waiters and the very friendly Hostess.

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TA
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Panama Restaurant is a long-time favorite of ours. Didn't realize they served a weekend brunch until this Sunday; went there for my birthday. It is an excellent combination of an interesting menu, well prepared food, great service, nice atmosphere and a modest price. Will return

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LJ
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I come to Panama Hotel often. It is a neighborhood favorite and is always consistent. The service and the food are always great. It is off the beaten path in a residential neighborhood, quaint and charming.

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LR
San Francisco
83 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We had a cozy table by the window and enjoyed a very nice meal. I had two of my favorites: chicken tortilla soup and Baja seafood salad. My friend was a bit late but the staff were very nice about it, asked me if I wanted anything while waiting and then gave us time to order after she arrived. I really enjoy the Panama Hotel atmosphere and food. We came on a non music night, but I have enjoyed the entertainers at past dinners.

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