Welcome to Panama

So Why Panama?
Panama is such an amazing country and surprises everyone who visits. I joke with our friends that if they are planning on coming to Panama be prepared to be overwhelmed.

So Why Panama? Is there a reason - No, There are several reasons -- the opportunities are plentiful, albeit the prices are going up.

We have really taken to the Caribbean coast as it offers so much nicer water and beaches.

Costa del Este
Panama City, Panama
The 2012 Spay Panama calendar is now available and it's their best ever! Both Panamanian AND U.S. holidays are labeled. The pictures featured are all of formerly homeless dogs and cats that were neutered and lucky enough to have been adopted. All proceeds go to support the wonderful efforts of Spay Panama to control the overpopulation of unwanted pets. Since its inception in 2002, Spay Panama has sterilized over 24,000 animals! The yearly calendar is their main fundraising tool and they really need your support. Like most other non-profit organizations, Spay Panama has seen a severe drop in donations due to the economy.

Pat Chan


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Since we moved to Panama in 2006 every time we tell one of our friends that we moved to the Republic of Panama, the first question is always "Why Panama". So we decided to build a web site to help them understand how simple the decision to choose Panama really was to us. We have included some links to other sites and to articles we think might help understand Panama. This  is  by no means exhaustive, so be sure to move through the suggested sites and explore the links and resources they suggest to ensure  you get as much information as possible.

News and events


We wandered around Casco Viejo the other weekend and what is so amazing is how far it has pushed out from the area we considered "safe" back in 2006 when we first arrived to where it is today. It used to be simple to do a tour around Casco with a new couple in a short time as the area was so small. Now the gentrified area has almost merged into Santa Ana. A new hotel, the Concordia, just opened its door. A real upscale hotel close to the American Trade Hotel. The Concordia has only 10 rooms. They all look spectacular and the 2 corner rooms are huge. It is an old ironside type building so that makes the corners unique. They have an amazing roof top lounge that we saw before it was ready for the public. There is also a new bar opened across the street from the Concordia, the Strangers Bar. The name harkens back to the very early days of the Panama Canal when the only private club was the Union Club and it was open to Panamanians only - no strangers (extraneros - foreign or strangers) so a group opened a club in Colon - The Strangers Club.

Panama is still our home - over 11 years since we first visited in April 2006. Little did we know when we arrived for 4 days.

Over those 11 years we've never regretted our move from Alberta Canada.

Our life here is not without some challenges but the bulk of the challenges are because we were not a typical retiring couple. When we moved we opened an office to work with our Canadian company.

We've expanded every year and now have over 10 staff - I would never have guessed that 11 years ago.

more news >>


Without the company the rest of our time in Panama would have been really quite simple. The company would not be so much of a challenge without the employees. Don't get me wrong, it is not the employees themselves it is the Labor code in Panama. It is so incredibly one sided against employers.

The cost of living has changed dramatically in the 11 years but we still find it a treat not to have to deal with taxes.

We get notes often asking about something to do with Panama - because we encourage people to ask. We've been so fortunate with our move and the people that have helped us we are more than willing to help where we can.

Feel free to ask if you are you just thinking of a vacation in Panama or if you are thinking of making Panama home we'd be happy to point you at some resources or give you some suggestions - we have nothing to sell and nothing to gain except maybe meeting a new friend. We have been really privileged to get to know some great friends during our past 10 years.

Our area of Costa del Este has just continued to evolve. Not all the growth has great - the traffic in the morning and evening is unbearable. But the upside is all the new services. 

If you want, write us if you have questions - we love to help.

We add to the areas of the site like people, sites, and services as our experience with each of them change so you should feel comfortable dealing with any of them.

more news >>


Donna started iCanGarden.com and is now over  20 years later it has become Canada's largest Internet gardening resource site. Several thousand people visit her site every day. Spend some time looking over the thousands of pictures of gardens from all over the world.

We are so proud of the TV special just aired by Recreating Eden - entitled "the Gardening Tourist".

Donna recently changed the look of the site - - if you enjoy it - let her know - I am really proud of her.


In 2006 Donna started a site dedicated exclusively to her garden tours but she has been hosting tours since 1998

For more than 18 years she has been hosting groups of gardeners to gardens all over the world.

Donna has some incredible garden tours lined up for 2017 and 2018 - her 2016 tours were all either fully booked or over booked. 

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