Cielito Sur B&B Inn
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Frommer's PANAMA
2nd Edition December 2008 (pg 224) - Jisel Perilla
1st Edition December 2006 (pg 223) - Kristina Schreck
Frommer's "Finds" & Three Star (Exceptional) Rating
One of the Best Small Hotels and B&Bs in Panama
"The guest book at the Cielito Sur is filled with visitor's wistful regrets that they couldn't spend another night at this intimate and peaceful B&B - mine included. It's an ideal place for traveller's seeking a pretty pastoral setting, snug guest rooms and easy-to-plan excursions. The Panamanian - American couple who own the Cielito, Janet and Glenn, are former canal employees who opted to retire in Panama after the handover. They couldn't have chosen a lovelier spot to build their B&B, nestled alongside a babbling creek and backed by exhuberant foliage interspersed with flowers and tropical trees. There are just four spacious rooms, each decorated in a country style paired with indigenous artwork. Two rooms are slightly larger and feature kitchenettes, and two have king-size beds that can be converted into two twins. The rooms face the back garden and a long patio terrace where 12 species of hummingbirds whiz about, Disney-like. What I like is the plenitude of common areas so that you don't feel trapped in your room. There's a short trail that winds through the property, a thached bohio hut with hammocks, a cute dining area, a little house with an indoor whirlpool, and a comfy living room with reclining chairs next to a fireplace and a well-stocked library. A hearty breakfast is included. Janet and Glenn can help plan daily excursions, and they seemingly know more about the highlands area than anyone I've met. The Cielito Sur is in Nueva Suiza, 10 kms (6 1/4 miles) from Volcan and just before Cerro Punta. Note that the B&B is closed during the month of October, and children must be 12 years or older to stay here."
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Moon Handbooks PANAMA
2nd Edition November 2008
(pg 312) - William Friar
1st Edition August 2005 (pg 383) - William Friar
"Easily the best run place to stay on the entire west side of the mountain is Hostal Cielito Sur Bed & is also the coziest and most pleasant. 10 kilometers north of Volcan in a postage stamp-size community called Nueva Suiza, Cielito Sur sits by itself on 2.5 hectares of land just off the main road but within easy driving distance of most of the area's attractions. It consists of four modern, spacious rooms, each with decor inspired by one of Panama's indigenous peoples - the Kuna and Teribe rooms, and the larger Ngobe-Bugle and Woonan-Embera rooms, which also have a minifridge and microwave. Even if you do not stay in the Woonan-Embera room, you should ask to check out the especially beautiful examples of Woonan baskets mounted on the wall. Everything here is done just right. The back patio of the bed and breakfast overlooks a springfed stream that runs through a carefully tended garden that attracts 10 species of hummingbirds. A stay includes an enormous breakfast in a sunny dining room and use of a private, enclosed hot tub. There's a common lounge with a fireplace, CD player and CDs, library and Internet computer. Your hosts are Janet and Glenn Lee, a Panamanian-American couple who speak fluent English and Spanish and are a good source of information on just about anything you'd like to know about the whole area. The Lee's can arrange transfers to or from David. They can also arrange ground transportation to or from just about anywhere else in western Panama, including Bocas and the Costa Rican border, as well as make domestic plane reservations and ground transfer arragements to or from Panama City."
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Fodor's PANAMA
2nd Edition (Fodor's Gold Guide) March 2010
- Marlise Kast
1st Edition (Fodor's Gold Guide) March 2008 (pg 248) - David Dudenhoefer
"The best thing about this B&B is the service provided by it's Panamanian-American owners, Janet & Glenn Lee. They rent mountain bikes, prepare box lunches, and organize tours ranging from bird-watching to a guided hike on the Sendero Los Quetzales with luggage transfers to your hotel in Boquete. Then there's its tranquil location at the forest edge, where a stream runs through the gardens and birdsong plays from sunrise to sunset. Spacious, well-equipped guest rooms are decorated with indigenous Panamanian crafts. Brighter end rooms are worth the extra $10. Guest share a cozy lounge with fireplace, DVD, stereo and computer, as well as a wide covered terrace with rocking chairs for watching the hummingbirds. You might end up skipping lunch after the magnificent breakfasts. Pros: Quiet, near nature, great breakfasts, helpful owners, nice rooms. Cons: No restaurant, often full."
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February 2008
- Chris & Connie Smith
"...A good friend of ours, Scott, had been to Cerro Punto and recommended that we stay in a wonderful B&B called Cielito Sur. As we had stayed in $20 a night hotels for the past 2 months, we decided to treat ourselves to this wonderful place and splurge by paying $75 a night. We cannot begin to tell you how much we enjoyed our stay. The property was beautiful with little rivers flowing through it, lovely artwork, 9 types of hummingbirds flying right outside out door, colourful flowers, butterflies galore, a filling breakfast, and wonderful hosts. A group on an Audubon society outing came onto the grounds and were oohing and aahing as they caught sight of the colourful tanagers that they were spotting on the feeders. The B and B was definitely a lovely place and one that we would like to recommend..."
(See full article: Cerro Punta and the Quetzal Trail to Boquete)

Lonely Planet PANAMA
4th Edition November 2007
(pg 212) - Matthew D. Firestone
"Just over 3 kms. past Bambito in the hamlet of Nueva Suiza is Hostal Cielito Sur B&B which is a great place to stop and recharge your body for the night. Owned by a friendly Panamanian-American couple, this delightful B&B offers four spacious guestrooms that have such incredible amenities as hot-water bathtubs, living room with fireplace and a private riverside patio." There's also a bohio (rustic hut) that's strung up with hammocks and a bathhouse that's outfitted with a large jacuzzi."
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National Geographic Traveler: PANAMA
1st Edition October 2007
(pg 253) - Christopher P. Baker
"This peaceful bed-and-breakfast enjoys a magnificent setting overlooking a trout-filled stream. Spacious, quaintly furnished alpine rooms...good for birding. A thatched bohio has hammocks and a bath house has a hot tub."
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International Living
Volume 26, Number 6, October 2006
- Steenie Harvey
"Home hospitality in Nueva Suiza: Owned by Glenn and Janet Lee, a Panamanian - Ameican couple, Cielito Sur is one of the nicest B&Bs I've stayed in. Leading to a verandah, there are four rooms, each named after an Indian tribe. All are decorated with mola fabrics and handmade throws. There's a guest lounge with plenty of books, CDs, and videos (handy when it rains), free Internet, and a hot tub. You awake to bird calls, a waterfall, and a chuckling stream. Each day's breakfast includes homemade breads and preserves, unususal juices such as soursop, and a choice of two hot gourmet meals. Glenn chalks the menu on a blackboard just like in a French bistro. It might be scrambled eggs (laid by Janet's hens), bacon, and a banana pecan pie...a garden omelet....sausages and blueberry (home grown) pancakes...vegetable quiche with a yucca crust. And the coffee is home-produced, too."

Footprint Mexico & Central America
16th Edition, August 2006
(pg 1184) - Peter Hutchinson
"A lovely place to stay, personal attention, each room is decorated with artwork from Panama's indigenous groups, delicious country-style brealkfast is included. Good information about the area from owners Janet and Glenn Lee."
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Pocket Adventures Guide PANAMA - 1st Edition 2006 (pg 236) - Patricia Katzman
Adventure Guide PANAMA - 1st Edition 2004 (pg 278) - - Patricia Katzman
"A gorgeous B&B in a magnificent garden setting. Two of the four lovely rooms, named for Panama's indigenous groups, have sinks, refrigerators, microwaves and coffee makers. There are two rooms on each side of the cozy, delightful lounge with comfy sofas and chairs, a cheering field stone fireplace, plenty of reading material, reference books and local information. The rooms and lounge open onto a wide mountain view verandah buzzing with tiny humminbirds. You'll find plenty of hammocks in a shady bohio and the indoor jacuzzi in its own little house is a wonderful place to unwind tired muscles after a day on the trails. Superb full breakfasts are served in the cafe-style dining room. Welcoming hosts Janet and Glenn Lee, who are fully bi-lingual, offer a variety of tours in the area. You'll find Cielito Sur beyond Volcan on the road to cerro Punta. Author's Tip: Be sure to make advance reservations at Hostal Cielito Sur, as it is a favorite with naturalist and birders.
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Paradise Services
Newsletter 9 Volume 1, May 23, 2005

"Superlatives fail me, so I will simply say that Hostal Cielito Sur is the nicest place I ever spent two days..."
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(See hummingbird video taken at Cielito Sur)

PANAMA: The Bradt Travel Guide
1st Edition March 2005
(pg 222) - Sarah Woods
"Cielito Sur B&B is 3 km from the centre of Bambito, in a tiny, forested hamlet of Nueva Suiza (New Switzerland), a cluster of alpine houses that will have you yearning for cowbells and yodelling. Owned by Janet & Glenn Lee, with four large rooms."
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Lonely Planet PANAMA
3rd Edition November 2004 (pg 219) - Regis St. Louis
2nd Edition November 2001 (pg 235) - Scott Doggett
"Hostal Cielito Sur B&B...a terific find...Four spacious guestrooms featuring private hot-water bathrooms with bathtubs, living room with fireplace, and riverside patios...There's also a bohio with hammocks and a bathhouse with a Jacuzzi spa for guest's use. This B&B is owned by Janet and Glenn Lee, a friendly Panamanian-American couple."
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The Visitor
Volume 10 Number 11, May 21, 2004

"Cielito Sur: Where art and nature becomes one. How much does environment influence an artist's work? Perharps a lot...."
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The Visitor
Volume 9 Number 11, May 23, 2003

"Cielito Sur: A new definition of Bed & Breakfast. One of the pioneers of the new style of “bed and breakfast” establishments in Panama is Hostal Cielito Sur at Cerro Punta in the Chiriqui highlands..."
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"Follow the Reader" in San Francisco Chronicle
April 20, 2003

"Hummingbirds buzz around Panama B&B. In January, during the dry season in Panama, we stayed at a delightful bed and breakfast in the cool highlands of Chiriqui province, between the towns of Cerro Punta and Volcan..."
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Panama CyberSpace News
Special Edition No. 21, April 10, 2003

"One of the highlights of our excursion was our visit to Hostal Cielito Sur, located off the highway leading to Cerro Punta. This "Bed and Breakfast" is owned and managed by Glenn and Janet Lee...four private rooms, a spacious sitting room, breakfast room, gardens and grounds with bird feeders, flowers, plants and a unique natural waterfall."
Carmela Gobern, Panama

Huaca Talk - U.S. Mission Panama
Volume 3 Number 11, March 14, 2003

"We went to Cerro Punta over Valentine’s Day to enjoy some rest and relaxation! It was great to get out of the city and enjoy the cool air and beautiful surroundings. We drove from Panama City following the Interamericana Hwy through the towns of Divisa, Santiago and David, up to Cerro Punta. There, we stayed in a Bed and Breakfast called Hostal Cielito Sur. Our hosts were Glenn and Janet Lee who have been in business two years and have four very comfortable rooms -- each decorated with Native Panamanian arts and crafts of the Indian tribes in that region! This is a retreat-type of B& encourages board games, reading, bird watching and lounging in hammocks. Games can be found in the community room, as well as a “leave a book, take a book” library with maps of the area. Glenn and Janet are registered tour guides as well! Also, there is a Jacuzzi to use at the end of your hiking days, or after touring the coffee plantations or picking in the strawberry fields. Breakfast is AWESOME and changes daily -- a warm dish, like fresh eggs, oatmeal, sausage and homemade breads, jams, granolas and fruits! Coffee is picked on site and juices come from blackberry and tomatillo trees. Quiet children (10 and over) are invited and this is the perfect place for couples and singles to get away! Bring extra shoes for hiking, extra changes of clothes for everyone (it is likely you will encounter a rain shower here), and warm clothes for the nights (like sweatpants and tops). Glen maintains excellent email communication! If you EVER have any questions, this is your man! Lastly, if you plan on going to this area, we recommend Hostal Cielito Sur for your lodging, breakfast is included in the price of the Hostal Cielito Sur!"
Paul & Renee Flores, US Embassy Panama

Travel Agent - Luisa Esquiroz Arrellano
March 25, 2002
"From the tropics to the clouds: Panama's Pacific region has great beaches and magnificent cloud forests to explore. Finca Cielito Sur in Cerro Punta is a bed-and-breakfast with four large rooms sitting in the misty highlands. The property caters to birdwatchers, hikers, and canoeing and river-rafting enthusiasts."
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Comments from our Guestbook
Here are some comments from the Cielito Sur B&B guestbook. Thank you to all those who took the time to leave their comments! We hope to see you again soon....

"What a place! I've visited 100s of hotels in all of Latin America, and few have achieved the quality of service, the level of comfort and uniqueness of your B&B. We fell in love with Cielito Sur within minutes. I love the hummingbirds! Glenn is a treasure trove of info, and your library is so complete. Absolutely wonderful."
Kristina Schreck, Frommer's Panama

"Thank you so much for such wonderful hospitality. Without exception, this is the loveliest B&B I've ever stayed in. Sitting watching all the birds is mesmerizing... the sound of the stream and's just so relaxing. Wonderful breakfasts too!"
Steenie Harvey, European Editor, International Living, Ireland

"WOW!! From the minute we drove through the gate, we felt like we were in paradise. What a beautiful and tranquil setting. Your place is so welcoming down to the most minute detail. Thanks so much for the wonderful dinner and great company. Catching up from Balboa Dive Club days was so fun. Your breakfasts are a true robust and delicious way to wake up. The hummers are magical. Thanks for being so proactive with the preservation of the ecology."
Carole Lightell, Oregon, USA

"Your home is a little bit of heaven on this earth. Thank you for sharing and for the wonderful breakfasts. Thank you Glenn for the directions to all your beatiful birds and for arranging a view of the Resplendent Quetzals."
Nicole & John Smith, Ontario, Canada

"You have blessed us with your gift of hospitality & graciousness. Being at Cielito Sur has been refreshing and renewing. Thanks for the delicious food, the great coffee, the comfortable rooms, the peaceful gardens, the abundance of flowers and birds, the warm informative conversations! Cielito Sur is a magical place!"
Steve & Cheryl Yant, Oregon, USA

"We have visited many places and experienced numerous vacations spots, but Cielito Sur is in a category all by itself. It's unique, cozy, beautiful and inviting. The enormous variety of birds, its cleanliness, beauty and hospitality offered are factors that make you want to return and stay longer"
Dolores & Harold Jury, Oklahoma, USA

"Thank you for your warm hospitality, engaging conversation, great introdutions + accommodations magnifico! Your bit of heaven here is a 'spoiler'. There's no place more perfecto on the planet. You have certainly made a significant difference in our experience of Panama. And, you are 'proof in the pudding' that great hospitality (and food) is in the detail"
Linda Harris & David Bangert, Hawaii, USA

"We can't begin to thank you for sharing this little bit of heaven with us. Your gardens are absolutely breathtaking! And the room with the most comfortable bed and all the amenities and traditional decor makes us feel right at home. The birds, the ducks and the adorable puppies...WOW! Everything to make a perfect holiday. Thank you for your hospitality...we look forward to our next visit. Muchas, muchas gracias!"
F. C. & Kelly Smith, California, USA

"...your hospitality was so very wonderful here in the 'South Heavens'...nothing but five stars from the accommodations to the spacious patio areas to the scrumptious breakfast..."
Chrisse Harwanko, Okinawa, Japan

"...what a delightful surprise, your home by the brook. We have enjoyed the peace and quiet and the many birds!"
Annie-Laurie Cisneros, Panama

"...beautiful setting, good bird watching, delicious home cooked breakfast and every help and assistance to make our stay more enjoyable...what more could we want?"
Les & Vanna Dutton, England

"...beautiful, relaxing, inspiring and heaven all in one place. We had a great time walking through the rain and cloud forest. Thanks for such a warm 'family' welcome..."
Bob & Irene Smith, Arizona, USA

"...I feel like I died and went to heaven! Your scrupulous attention to detail, excellent food, warmth and hospitality make this place paradise..."
Laura Livingston, USA

"...Thank you for your wonderful hospitality, very loving doggies, spectacular hummingbirds and extensive knowledge of the area..."
Jim & Nancy Forbes, British Columbia, Canada

"...Your B&B is truly a gem, and we are so happy that we found out about it in the Panama Guidebook (Lonely Planet). The author was correct when he stated that Cielito Sur is a real find. The beauty of your setting, the hummingbirds constant presence, the delicious breakfasts and your warm personalities all combined to create a very enjoyable experience..."
Carl, Sharon & Dana Meggers, California, USA

"Your finca is one of the nicest place we have stayed with! It is wonderful, peaceful place in a lovely surrounding..."
Jan Hendricks & Claudia Duerr, Cologne, Germany

"Best birdwatching place we have been to..."
Pamela & Tim Keller, Indiana, USA

"Best bed, best room, best grounds, and best food we've had in Panama. Thanks for making our short stay very memorable"
Nina & Scott Hodlmair, Illinois, USA

"In the Chiriqui highlands we stayed in Nueva Suiza at the Hostal Cielito Sur B&B. This B&B more than lived up to the expectations in the 2001 edition Lonely Planet Panama Guide. The B&B is an immaculate operation in a beautiful setting. The owners are Janet and Glenn Lee. They were incredibly accommodating. The superb breakfast is largely made from everything grown and produced right on the grounds including the homegrown and roasted coffee. Homedamde jams, breads and juices are also included."
Brian Hatoff, California, USA

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