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Chumley

Mar 12, 2006, 5:16 AM

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A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Not to be outdone, San Miguel is about to witness the opening of a new, elegant, boutique hotel of its own, Casa de Aves. I visited there on Friday with the owner, Senora Leticia Serrano de Spinolo, who took me on the tour of the beautiful property located about twenty minutes outside of San Miguel a fews clicks off the carraterra to Dolores. Located on 100 acres of river bottom farm land near the many hot springs that dot the campo, the new hotel consists of eight separate casitas, each named after a type of bird found on the property. They are one or two bedroom units that have been equiped with very conceivable amenity from flatscreen TV and DVD players to complete kitchens to fireplaces to hot tubs on the roofs. The casitas are arranged in a fashion that provides for maximum privacy for the occupants. There is a striking main building that houses reception, a cantina and large dining room where the meals served are prepared by a chef brought in from Cancun. There is an outdoor sala beyond the dining room with a large fireplace to allow guests to lounge. From there a stone bridge leads to a wonderful swimming pool. There is a spring fed lake on the property with another outdoor sala, a complete workout gym, horses or bicycles are available for riding through the surrounding country side. It opens formally for Semana Santa, and is already fully booked. For a look see, go to its website. www.casadeaves.com

I might point out that this is not for the budget traveler, nor a family with children. Prices begin at $250 US a night, and packages can be purchased that include meals, drinks, and eqiuipment rentals. There is a small artisans complex where guests can participate in learning basic techniques for wood, glass, and clay making. A combi van will be available to take guests into San Miguel, but the primarly concept behind the resort, as the Senora put it, is privacy, privacy, privacy. It is one of the most unique resorts in the San Miguel area, and I predict it will enjoy great success as the city increasingly attracts more sophisticated visitors.


(This post was edited by Chumley on Mar 12, 2006, 5:31 AM)



Gringal

Mar 12, 2006, 12:47 PM

Post #2 of 24 (9344 views)

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Re: [Chumley] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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That is one fine place, based on seeing the website. I think one would require considerable wealth along with sophistication to consider staying there, however.

This brings me to contemplating the changes in this community over the short period of time I've lived here. The luxury housing developments on the roads out of town and the escalating prices in town bring a shudder. Not to invoke NIMBYISM, but I wonder how far it will go? I'm not concerned for myself since I bought my little piece of the rock, but I'm wondering about the creative types and older retirees who are renting - if the landlords start upping the tab 10% per annum. Will they be forced to "fall out of love" with San Miguel?


jennifer rose

Mar 12, 2006, 1:11 PM

Post #3 of 24 (9340 views)

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Re: [Gringal] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Sure, it's expensive, but it also appears to be a very nice place. Check out the prices sometime for a hotel along N. Michigan Ave. in Chicago, and you'll find this place a relative bargain.


Gringal

Mar 12, 2006, 1:35 PM

Post #4 of 24 (9334 views)

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Re: [jennifer rose] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Interesting point, but have you considered the cost of land and building along North Michigan Avenue as opposed to the cost in the countryside of San Miguel?
The last time I happily paid over $250 per night for a room was in a boutique hotel on the coast of California in an area where land prices are in the stratosphere and the Pacific Ocean below the window was served up as the main attraction. In other words, I believe there has to be some justification beyond snob appeal for asking a high price for anything. There are plenty of people who pay $400 for designer shoes, too. So I'm thrifty and crusty as well.


Blackjack Davie

Mar 12, 2006, 3:53 PM

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Re: [Gringal] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Chumley, sophisticated traveler? Are you, perchance, suggesting that wealth and sophistication go hand in hand? Mostly, I think they are diametrically opposed. Well, at least, I am sure that sophistication is not the imminent domain of the privileged class. OK, so I am being argumentative. I will be in San Miguel the week of March 26th and I am looking for a good room priced in the neighborhood of thirty to forty dollars. Suggestions, anyone?


Gringal

Mar 12, 2006, 4:31 PM

Post #6 of 24 (9306 views)

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Re: [Blackjack Davie] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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I don't know about diametrically opposed, but not necessarily holding hands.

There was an informative thread on the subject of budget hotels some time back, so I'd suggest trying a search on that. Some friends stayed at the Posada de los Monjas near the town center last year for about $55. I saw their room. Basic, but clean and pleasant. If you go there, try to get a room on one of the upper floors facing west. Some of the rooms in the interior are reputed to be gloomy. Good luck.


(This post was edited by Gringal on Mar 12, 2006, 4:33 PM)


moonfam5

Mar 12, 2006, 9:00 PM

Post #7 of 24 (9279 views)

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Re: [Chumley] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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I wouldn't even pay 320 a night here in the U.S.!! There are some wonderful hotels all over Mexico for much less. Call me "codo", but those prices are ridiculous! But I really don't stay at hotels when in Mexico unless at a resort, since my wife and I have our vacation/retirement home done already in Michoacan. When we go, we do alot of day trips, or stay with family when we travel to other parts. Like I said, call me "codo".
WinkThe more I learn, I less I know.


Cynthia7

Mar 12, 2006, 11:41 PM

Post #8 of 24 (9273 views)

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Re: [Blackjack Davie] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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There are hotels in that price range in SMA. Quinta Loretto, Acacia by the bus station..They are tucked in and of course, they have no internet sites. I saw a new one the other day next door to my favorite restaurant..Ole Ole.! There are several on the lower part of Insurgentes..you just have to look around. Also..don't kill the messenger..Chumley was giving information about a wonderful new accommodation in the area. I have met the owners and from what I hear it is really first class. I am always pleased when people open first class places. I may not choose to stay there but am delighted that there are places available for those who do want to stay there. Sounds good to me!!


Carol Schmidt


Mar 13, 2006, 5:32 AM

Post #9 of 24 (9261 views)

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8 apts under $450/mo found in a week

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The canard that San Miguel is only for the rich keeps coming up here, but a friend just arrived in San Miguel and in a week he has found eight nice apartments in the $300-$450 a month range walking distance from Centro.

I know half a dozen nice SMA hotels which charge $25-50 a night and a hostel for $8.50.

San Miguel is still definitely liveable on Social Security, no matter how many luxury establishments go up as well.

Carol Schmidt
www.fallinginlovewithsanmiguel.com


Chumley

Mar 14, 2006, 8:46 AM

Post #10 of 24 (9179 views)

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Re: [Blackjack Davie] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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You made a common mistake, using imminent (which means events about to occur) with eminent as in famous, distinguished. However, eminent domain means the right of a government to take private property with compensation and has nothing to do with class or style. And of course wealth and sophistication do not go hand in hand. Witness the scores of professional athletes or country and western singers who are wealthy beyond an average person's understanding, but lack even the minimum of social graces to be called sophisticated. My intent was merely to state what is obvious to anyone who visits Casa de Aves. It is intended as a getaway for people of means and style, nada mas. As to the alleged canard that San Miguel is only for the wealthy, of course that too is not true as a generalization. However, having significant resources to live better than the average person has certainly attracted individuals with wealth to San Miguel because of what it is. I would maintain that there are two San Miguels, all coexisting within the same geographical confines: a foreign community which is divided between those of means, and those who means are limited; and the local Mexican community, which also is divided between those of means, and those who means are limited. This is not intended to incite class warfare among either the foreign community or the locals or between the two. It is simply an observation after thirteen years of living in San Miguel that there are those who live simply and then there are those who simply live to enjoy life. Count me among the latter.


Gringal

Mar 14, 2006, 2:38 PM

Post #11 of 24 (9154 views)

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Re: [Chumley] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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"It is simply an observation after thirteen years of living in San Miguel that there are those who live simply and then there are those who simply live to enjoy life. Count me among the latter. "

That one was just tooo tempting. Is there a conflict between "living simply" and the other option? Count me among both groups!


sfmacaws


Mar 14, 2006, 7:12 PM

Post #12 of 24 (9131 views)

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Re: [Gringal] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Did anyone else go and look at the pictures and think the place is really ugly? It is barren and stark in an unattractive way in my opinion. Are they going to landscape it or is dirt and tiny mutant bushes the way they want it to look?

I've never thought the countryside around SMA was attractive, much too dry and brown and uninteresting. This place seems to highlight the worst features of a pretty featureless area.

I do think that the city of SMA has gorgeous buildings and a certain flair and style. It is just set in a monotonous and unattractive area - too high in altitude for good weather and too dry and cold for my comfort. I guess I've joined the Bubba ranks of SMA bashers for this but I'd put it as one of the most overrated areas in Mexico. If colonial charm and a lot of art and artisania is what you want, Antigua has all that SMA has but is in a stunningly beautiful location as well. JMHO


Jonna - Mérida, Yucatán




Gringal

Mar 14, 2006, 8:15 PM

Post #13 of 24 (9121 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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You certainly have a point. The town itself has much to offer in visual delights, but the countryside is pretty barren.


Blackjack Davie

Mar 15, 2006, 6:16 PM

Post #14 of 24 (9074 views)

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Re: [Gringal] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Chumley, I am nearly as embarrassed by my misuse of the English language as I am by my criticism of a perfectly good person posting his opinions on this open forum, Too many margaritas at the Rio Grande restaurante. Sorry. I never mean to be offensive but we all stray at times.

Still, there is a point to be made...while you did offer a reasoned explanation regarding the "sophisticated traveler," you went on to describe this lovely new hotel as one to be experienced by those of "means and style." Are we not back to where we started?

I hope that you are having a really good day in SMA and I would be happy to run into you in the jardin during my imminent visit. If all goes well, I should be there during the week of March 26th. Gringal, and all other good people on this forum, I would be delighted to meet you as well. Just look for a bearded, balding, slender, confused man of sixty plus years. Don't hesitate to say hello. David


Gringal

Mar 15, 2006, 8:13 PM

Post #15 of 24 (9053 views)

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Re: [Blackjack Davie] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Your description fits a great many denizens of the Jardin. If you wish to meet some of the people with whom you've been corresponding, you'll need to PM them and set it up.


Cynthia7

Mar 15, 2006, 8:13 PM

Post #16 of 24 (9051 views)

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Re: [Blackjack Davie] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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The jardin is filled with bearded, balding,slender?,confused men of 60ish..You may need to wear a flower in your lapel or behind your ear.. The slender part may be enough to set you apart...


Chumley

Mar 16, 2006, 5:02 AM

Post #17 of 24 (9034 views)

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Re: [Blackjack Davie] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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What is so difficult to understand about "means and style?" It simply indicates that the market for this resort is for people with money and an understanding for a sense of style for the type of place it is. God, you are making a mountain out of nothing. As for meeting you in the Jardin, never happen.


Blackjack Davie

Mar 16, 2006, 5:38 AM

Post #18 of 24 (9027 views)

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Re: [Chumley] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Chumley, please don't be a bad sport. Remember your recent story about Carol Schmidt and CNN. You received a lot of flack over that. I offer my apology to you and I hope you will accept it. We obviously have touched on an issue upon which we cannot agree. No problem. I'm sure there are many more upon which we could agree. I'm sorry that I rubbed you the wrong way. David


carlw

Mar 16, 2006, 7:31 AM

Post #19 of 24 (9010 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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The description of an uninviting place is right. The page says " mature trees," but I did not see any. It reminds of movies about the foreign legion, where they show the forts in the Sahara Desert, the sun beating down mercilessly upon them and nowhere to hide from it, and now I am thirsty. It looks unfinished, and there is not a single photo showing any people, which might have helped make it a little more appealing. Perhaps a few more shots of the place from the river side?


Bubba

Mar 16, 2006, 8:09 AM

Post #20 of 24 (8997 views)

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Re: [sfmacaws] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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I must agree with Jonna about this butt-ugly construction which is some achitect's self-centered ode to him/herself set in the moonscape environs of San Miguel and having the feel of a new junior college lost in the scrub of the San Joaquin Valley. I guess it is unfair to critique the place until they bring in a landscape consultant and actually do some plantings.

Those of you enamored of San Miguel who have not had the pleasure of visiting Antigua, Guatemala, heed Jonna's comment. Antiqua is everything San Miguel aspires to be and is also important historically. It is in a natural setting that is spectacular. When we were last there, there was a civil war going on and, consequently, we did not consider buying which is really too bad since it is now quite expensive.

While it is none of my business, I am surprised at Chumley's seeming petulance in response to David's contrite peace offering. As Chumley says, David, forget it and stop being so frigging nice.

Those of us who post here repeatedly are bound to make mistakes and are often vulnerable as a result. I don't believe it enhances my stature hereabouts to humiliate others because they inadvertently misuse the language when their meaning is clear.


(This post was edited by Bubba on Mar 16, 2006, 8:13 AM)


Rolly


Mar 16, 2006, 8:17 AM

Post #21 of 24 (8992 views)

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Re: [Bubba] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Yep, some folks are just natural born jerks.

Rolly Pirate


Chumley

Mar 16, 2006, 8:32 AM

Post #22 of 24 (8987 views)

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Re: [carlw] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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All that you have seen is what is portrayed on the website. You have not seen the entire Rancho as I have. In my original post, I stated that Casa de Aves was located on 100 acres of river bottom land. If you stand on the mirrador on the top of the reception building, you will see many matures trees throughout the property, in addition to large medows and the large spring fed lake and the stream flowing through the property. And, as I stated, the resort will open Semana Santa, and thus of course there are no people in the photos. But, then, when you look at layouts in travel magazines, for the most part there are no people.


Gringal

Mar 16, 2006, 8:39 AM

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Re: [Rolly] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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Maybe it's time for everyone to gather in a circle, hold hands, and start singing "Kumbaya".


Chumley

Mar 16, 2006, 8:40 AM

Post #24 of 24 (8979 views)

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Re: [Bubba] A new, elegant boutique hotel in San Miguel

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You are a fine one to lecture me about humiliating someone in words, you are the past master at it. And, as for the style of the place architecturally, do the names Barragan or Langoretta mean anything to you? Fine examples of CONTEMPORARY Mexican architecture. The beauty of the setting is in its starkness, only the sky above, the rolling hills covered with scrub brush, and the lush green river valley. Until one visits the actual site, I don't understand how one can arbitrarily make judgements. It is my decision, and mine alone, whom I choose to meet and befriend, no one else makes those decisions for me. And this is the last post I will make about this subject. You all can talk amongst yourselves.


(This post was edited by Chumley on Mar 16, 2006, 8:43 AM)
 
 
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