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Living in Panama - The Complete Guide to Panama
Panama's #1 Seller!

The Oldest, and Certainly Most Interesting Book Store in Panama

by Sandra Snyder

Recently I had the delight of discovering Libreria Cultural Panamena, S.A. This 55 year-old bookstore on Vía España at Calle 1ra, Perejil, in the heart of Panama City is a family owned institution. Recognized as the oldest, largest and most complete bookstore with its history of participation in the International Book Fair, Libreria Cultura Panamena (LCP) is waiting for you to discover its treasurers.

Luis Fernando Fraguela and Manuel Fraguela have been in the same location since the inception. When you walk into the shop you know you have found a book lovers paradise. Bookshelves line the walls and form organized rows everywhere. Looking around the shop, the little wall space remaining is covered with an incredible collection of photos of Panama’s native authors. And, in fact, LCP boasts the most complete selection of Panamanian authors, which include everything from literature to history to art and much more. They also offer numerous international authors as well.

LCP boasts an amazing selection of just what you would expect to find in a good bookstore anywhere in the world: novels, poetry, histories, essays, storybooks, textbooks, travel guides, plus an entire section of rare and antique books. If you are looking for limited editions or books out of print, remember to check first at LCP. Fernando pointed out that in addition to books in Spanish, they carry numerous volumes in French, German and English.

Libreria Cultural is always looking for ways to serve their customers better and as a result they offer free delivery to home or office within the City for purchases of $40 or more. LCP also operates as editors and distributors of books for their clients. They also serve as a cultural center hosting monthly book club meetings in a cozy sitting area in the back of the shop. Organizer Mayra Esthela Ortega makes the selections monthly, which are presented in either English or Spanish depending on the language of the book and interest of the attendees. Check the LCP web site for details on upcoming charlas as well as a listing of books available in the shop. Be sure also to pick up a copy of Las Musas (Agenda Cultural Mensual de Panama) for announcements of books, charlas, seminars, music, dance and exhibitions for the month around the City.

Open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., email:, telephone: 223-6267.

© Sandra T. Snyder
Author of Living in Panama and other books

Panama Eagle, August 2007


The International Book Fair 2009
Sandra will be available to autograph books and answer questions
August 19
through August 23, 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Info

Gran Morrison will inaugurate Book Week with Panama Authors: Sandra Snyder, Rose Marie Tapia, Rafael Candanedo and Rosita Cordoba.
September 19, 2008, 4:00 p.m. at Gran Morrison El Dorado, El Dorado Mall.

Tuesday Morning Meeting
Sandra will share some of her experiences and provide some helpful hints for better living in Panama. Info
March 11, 2008

P.B.C. Person2Person
Sandra & David on the radio. Podcast
January, 2008



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