Almost from our launch time we’ve bemoaned the lack of luxury hotels in Panama City. For such an international center of commerce and banking, it’s baffling that there are so few great hotels in the city itself. There are reasons for this—the bubble in residential and commercial real estate over the past few years being a big part of it—but we’re happy to have something now to add to our reviews there: Le Meridien Panama.

Sure, this is an international chain hotel, but Le Méridien has lots of fans around the world and their designs are often more bold and beautiful than the Marriotts and Hiltons favored by buttoned-up business travelers. The chain’s first entry into Central America is no exception.

“Panama City’s newest hotel is alight in Art Deco neon and covered in cougar prints. Its billowing curtains and outsized décor borrow heavily from Miami Beach classics like the Delano Hotel.

A further wander through the lobby reveals a five-story atrium with rectangles of green, orange, and yellow glass. The mood-lit elevators sometimes purr with rainforest sounds.”

This probably won’t be taking the crown away from the refined Bristol Hotel as the favored spot for celebrities and tycoons, but this is a welcome new addition to a skyline that could use quite a few more places to stay. See our full review of Le Méridien Panama.