Casa No Name – A Unique Hotel
We could see right a way that San Miguel was going to be a fascinating place to visit. There were colorful buildings, picturesque streets and magnificent churches. It is a UNESCO Heritage Site rich in history that dates back to 1542.
The moment we stepped into the hotel we were welcomed with enthusiastic hospitality. Our flight arrived very early and so we were at the hotel before check in time, but they were very gracious to allow us to go immediately to our room.
Just a bit of history about the hotel. It originally belonged to the famous artist and photographer Deborah Tuberville, a legend in the world of photography. The property contains an invaluable 18th century mural, painted in the tradition of the noted Sanctuary of Atotonico, often called the Sistine Chapel of Mexico.
Since it was so early, we decided to have the continental breakfast. The food is all organic and prepared in a healthy way. There is a menu if you want something more substantial ,which we did. It was all very delicious.
We went right to our room after we ate and decided a nap was in order. Of course, we first took a few photos on the way to our room and then a few of the bedroom before organizing our things
Walking to El Jardin and St. Michael, the Archangel Church
It had been a very long night and sometimes stressful beginning, so we decided to rest before doing any adventuring. I worked on my blog and Shawn took a nap. I finally succumbed and took a nap , too. We woke up around 1pm and took a slow picture-taking walk to the main plaza – El Jardin, the heart of San Miguel, to look for a place to change our money to pesos, but unfortunately, they required a passport and we didn’t bring ours. We would have to make another trip the next morning.
The historic center remains much as it was 250 years ago. No parking meters, no traffic signals and no fast food restaurants. The houses have solid walls against the sidewalks and are painted in various colors – ochre, orange and yellow and many with Bougainvillea vines falling down the outside. Most of the windows are iron-grated and decorated with flower boxes.. There is estimated to be two thousand doors in the historic center and behind these doors as many courtyards. Shawn and I both took a lot of door photos. There were some very unique ones. The city is noted for its cobblestone lanes and narrow sidewalks. There is a large police presence since it is a historical city, and tourists feel relatively safe wandering the streets even at night.
We wandered over to the Parish church of San Miguel – La Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel. It’s impressive structure dominates the historical plaza. It is a Neo-gothic facade with two tall towers which can be seen from most parts of town. One of the most photographed churches in Mexico. The current facade was constructed in 1880.
Most of our time was spent photographing from the outside and as of yet we have not been inside. Hopefully, we will get to it before we leave.
We meandered our way back to the hotel. It is only about 10 minutes walking distance, but we seem to find a different way each time to get there. It is fun walking along the side streets with all the art galleries, little souvenir shops, interesting and varied restaurants, as well as a mixture of locals and tourists. The narrow sidewalks do make passing a bit difficult at times ,and here you are expected to jay walk like it was second nature! After two or three days you quickly get acclimated to the San Miguel City life.
Sights along the streets as we walked back to our hotel:
Since we were back a bit early, we decided to see the rest of the hotel. Here are a few more pictures of the hotel’s delightful interior design.
Some nice touches:
Believe it or not, I could have thrown in a few more photos of this lovely, well-designed boutique hotel. Finishing our tour, we had to plan where to go for dinner. We wanted to go close by, so the desk clerk suggested Marcela, a restaurant – two doors down. We looked it up on the internet and saw a few reviews that complained about the service but the food itself had good reviews. We went early thinking that the service would be better earlier than later. We were very pleased with the excellent food and the attentive service.
We shared creme boulee for dessert – a bit different from the usual but still very good! Well after that scumptious meal, we had a long walk home (two doors down) and we were happy to go to bed early. Our plan was to get up at 7am and perhaps the traffic would not be so congested and we looked forward to being able to capture the essence of the picturesque San Miguel Streets. Monday had been a full and interesting day!