On April 22, 2012, 192 countries around the world—and thousands of cities and towns—celebrated the 42nd Annual Earth Day. In Boquete, Panama dozens of people, old and young, gathered in the pre-dawn hours and made the daunting trek to the top of Volcan Baru, Panama’s sleeping giant. The Baru Volcano is one of the few places in the world where you can see both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans at the same time. At almost 12,000 feet, Baru is also the tallest volcano in the southern region of Central America. During its last eruption—some 800 years ago—it threw large amounts of lava as far away as 300 miles. Talk about fireworks!
Today, the summit of Volcan Baru, reached from Boquete, is a primary eco-tourist destination. It was fitting that movers and shakers in Panama’s fledgling environmental movement—including vice-president Juan Varela—would mark Earth Day by calling attention to this towering peak in the ecologically fragile highland cloud forest.
Since it’s beginnings in 1914, The Panamonte Inn & Spa has always encouraged guests and local residents to appreciate and protect the lush environment that surrounds Boquete. The Panamonte was the first to offer international birders the opportunity to seek out the 1,000 or more species of birds that pass through the valley each year; the first to offer guides to take visitors to Baru’s peak; the first to host scientists from the Smithsonian Institute, coming to Boquete to catalogue the lush plant life of the highland jungle.
This tradition of eco-appreciation and advocacy continues today. Panamonte’s General Manager, Sandra Naranjo, participated in the organization and pre-trip exploration of the April 22 trip up Baru, and the Panamonte provided support for the other trekkers. More importantly, however, is the day-to-day ways in which the Panamonte practices eco-friendly, healthy sustainability.
“One way we do this at the Panamonte,” says Owner and Executive Chef Charlie Collins, “is in our kitchen. We use locally grown produce, fruits, dairy and coffee, purchased from local organic growers whenever possible. We carefully vet all our meat sources, purchasing locally raised beef, pork and chicken—which means grass fed beef, and pork and chicken from farms that are humane and healthier than the big agribusiness farms typical in the US. Our emphasis is always on quality, and that means organic, sustainable and local. We practice the Slow Food philosophy.”
Upcoming in June: Boquete’s Second Annual Health Week, June 18 – 22. Visit various sites around town, sample healthy menus, listen to educational presentations on diet, herbs, exercise, meditation and more. The Panamonte invites you to visit during this week. Stay in one of the Terrace or Garden Suites and enjoy the luxury of relaxing. Enjoy a Slow Food meal, a stroll in the gardens, a peaceful afternoon by the fireplace. It’s all part of living a sustainable, de-stressed, healthier lifestyle.
Make your reservation today. Call our reservation desk at 011-507-720-1324 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Panamonte awaits you!