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From International Magazines and Newspapers

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New York Times: In Panama, Nobody Here but 289 Birds

I NEVER thought I'd come face to face with an ocellated antbird. In fact, until the day before, I hadn't even known there was such a thing. But here it was, with its mate, scratching around in the leaves just a few feet away. It was about bluebird size, with a ring of blue around its eye and an intricate pattern of spots on its brown back and breast. A genuine rara avis! I had come upon it while walking along a paved road cut...

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Denver Post: Panama's Canopy Tower provides a luxurious perch

Sitting among the treetops high in the forest canopy, we sipped a good Chilean chardonnay and dined on savory curry with coconut rice. The evening sounds of the jungle serenaded us with the last trills of birds and muffled grunts of howler monkeys as they bedded down for the night...

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VENT Birdletter: Panama's Canopy Tower: A Wonder of the Birding World

Even though I had seen Jeff Gordon's videotape and heard glowing reports about Panama's Canopy Tower, I was not prepared for the moment when I climbed the steps from the dining room that first night and emerged onto the roof of this remodeled radar station. I felt as if I were coming up from the confines of a ship...

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The Boston Globe: Panama: so much more than the canal

In a nature preserve just north of the city an entrepreneur named Raúl Arias de Para has converted an old US radar tower into a birder's paradise. We were allowed to visit, as long as we kept the children in check (the drop from the top, which has just a single rope at the edge, is 200 feet). On the top floor is a dining room and sitting area filled with books on the area's flora and fauna...

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Los Angeles Times: A Sea Change in Panama: Beyond the canal, new luxury resorts and eco-tourism in a a land rich with natural wonders

...Its owner, a former banker named Raúl Arias de Para, dubbed it the Canopy Tower and opened the lodging for business in 1999. Since then he has nudged prices up to $95 to $185 per person per day, which includes all meals and walking tours...

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Hollis Times: Robert DeMayo's Canopy Tower Trip

Far South of us, down by the equator, lie vast tracks of primary rainforest. Hot, sticky jungles filled with insects and exotic bird calls. In this world jaguars and pumas still rule the night. Everybody's heard of the Panama canal, but very few realize that the canal is actually responsible for saving vast stretches of nature...

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CNN: Towering above Panama's rain forest

Rising above the treetops of Panama's rain forest is Canopy Tower, an eco-lodge that offers the most unusual view of the jungle and the potential to see more than 200 species of birds...

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Audubon: A View With a Room

The U.S. military once used this radar tower to track drug runners flying from neighboring Colombia. Overlooking the Panama Canal, the tower is a remarkable example of Panama's "peace dividend." In accordance with the Panama Canal Treaty, more than 80,000 acres of primary rainforest are reverting to Panamanian control...

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The Georgia Straight: War-on-drugs tower now a bird observatory

Panama already offered some of the world's best birding opportunities, but they became even better with the January 1999 opening of the Canopy Tower near Panama City. This five--storey former radar installation-used until recently by the United States government to hunt drug--smuggling planes-has been converted into a comfortable ecolodge and canopy observation post by Raul Arias, a prominent Panamanian businessman and avid bird watcher...

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The Wall Street Journal Archives: Bases Become Hotels for Eco-Tourists

As a police official in the democratic government that took over after U.S. troops deposed Manuel Noriega in 1989, Mr. Arias de Para helped transform the bases and training camps of Gen. Noriega's defunct armed forces into orphanages and schools...

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Travel and Leisure: The Ultimate Army Surplus Panama City Radar Hotel

It's Noriega's nightmare: I'm standing atop a former U.S. Air Force tower 30 minutes outside Panama City, high above the Panamanian jungle at 10:30 on a warm, windy night. The individuals around me look as if they've just stumbled out of bed (or a Redmond O'Hanlon tale). One wears boxers only. Another, a sarong and binoculars...

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San Antonio Express-News: Big Plans for Former Bases

SOBERANIA NATIONAL PARK, Panama - High up in the rainforest, amid the loud roars of howler monkeys and the sweet chirping of tropical birds, a strange yellow bubble rises from treetops."U.S. Defense Site. Do not enter," reads a sign at the entrance. But by all means, enter through the chain-link gate. No one will shoot you...

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