Keith's Panamanian Travel Ramble

The wanderings of Andrea and Keith around Panama

Our New Furniture from Capira

Our new custom furniture finally arrived a couple of weeks ago and I thought you might be interested in what we got. Furniture choice here is difficult due to the humidity and bugs.

We have a number of cabinets made from plastic by a company called Rimax. It comes from Colombia. Plastic you say… why you say! Well, mould, mildew, humidity and smell is why. Plastic does not mould and is easy to keep clean. Much of the furniture you see offered in the stores is built from press board, which swells and takes on a strong not very pleasant odor. There is also lots of imported soft wood furniture that looks great but will also swell in the humidity and the bugs love it. You have to watch for little wood powder piles in the vicinity that will tell you that you have some unwanted guests trying to move into your wooden furniture. The plastic may not look all that fancy but it is highly functional, which is the point. So what is the solution?

There are a couple of hardwoods here that bugs won’t touch. Teak, called teca, and Sour Cedar. You can find furniture in the stores made from these but the styles were not to our liking with poor quality of construction and finishing. We asked around and found a custom furniture shop that was recommended. It is in Capira, a town inland (west) about a two-hour drive. We visited the factory and ordered the furniture and I wrote a blog about it. (

2016-JKH-Panama Trip

Our furniture was delivered a couple of weeks ago. It was nicely built and well finished. Designs were ours, except for the bed which was a copy of one in his factory. Everything was built with teca and from photos of items we liked the look of but that would not have worked here. It was also cheaper (I like cheap as I am Scottish) to buy custom build teca furniture than store bought press board or softwood items that would not survive our conditions.

What do you think?

3 Responses to “Our New Furniture from Capira”

  1. Pam

    What do I think? I think you did good. The plastic furniture is lovely and the wood very nice…and best of all suitable for your environment. Enjoy.

  2. Chris

    I love those stacking end tables. Beautiful designs. I’ve never heard of Teca wood. I’ve heard the insects there eat everything.

    • Keith

      Hi Chris,
      Teca is Spanish for Teak. Bugs leave it alone. It weighs a ton and is so hard that nails bend when you try to pound them into the wood.


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