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 Guanajuato recommendations.

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raqueteer
Amigo
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Posts : 240
Join date : 2011-07-12

20110719
PostGuanajuato recommendations.

We will be visiting Guanajuato for a few days in the near future, and would appreciate any recommendations for a hotel, and restaurants.

Our 12 year old grand-daughter will be with us, so a pool might be a big bonus.

Anti-nausea pills might also be good. She wants to see the momias. ( insert puking emoticon here).
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Tue 19 Jul 2011, 11:55 by cheenagringo
We have only visited Guanajuato one time and stayed at: http://www.caminoreal.com/Micrositio/index.php?id=12
A tad on the expensive side but we went to Guanajuato without reservations and then got lost in the maze of tunnels and streets. Ran across a couple of so-called tourist guides on motorcycles who would lead you to where you wanted to go. We bought into the program since our priority was to get a room and then head out for our first exploration of this city. Since we were familiar with the Camino Real chain, that is where we asked to be taken. They do qualify with very nice grounds surrounding a what appeared to be well maintained pool: https://picasaweb.google.com/Chinagringo/GUANAJUATOGTOMX#5548476122977252002

One B&B receives consistently good ratings on Trip Advisor and we have known a couple of people personally that have stayed at Casa Zuniga: http://www.casazunigagto.com/
I cannot say that I have ever read a negative review of this establishment.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Tue 19 Jul 2011, 12:10 by Don Cuevas
A Pátzcuaro expat friend has written about completely furnished apartments in "upstream" Guanajuato, but it will take me some time to locate the post and the apartment website. He recommends them highly.

(About 3 minutes, I reckon.)
http://www.guanajuatorentals.com/
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Tue 19 Jul 2011, 14:56 by raqueteer
Thanks, we'll look into these.

The recommendation of the travel agent was The Museo Posada de Santa Fé. Trip Advisor ratings were all over the map. Lots of downside ones, although the location is excellent.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Tue 19 Jul 2011, 15:12 by cheenagringo
Wasn't sure of the location of that particular hotel and then I looked it up on Google Maps. It appears to be one of the numerous hotels on the Jardin de la Union. We had lunch at a sidewalk cafe on the Jardin de la Union and it is a beautiful area. We walked into a few but didn't check out the rooms. I would suspect that the Jardin is fairly lively and maybe noisy on certain nights.

If one is in decent physical shape, Guanajuato is a great walking city providing one has one leg longer than the other to handle all of the hills. Taxis appeared to be inexpensive. Every trip we took by taxi was $20MXN and we didn't argue.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Wed 20 Jul 2011, 12:34 by raqueteer
cheenagringo wrote:
Wasn't sure of the location of that particular hotel and then I looked it up on Google Maps. It appears to be one of the numerous hotels on the Jardin de la Union. We had lunch at a sidewalk cafe on the Jardin de la Union and it is a beautiful area. We walked into a few but didn't check out the rooms. I would suspect that the Jardin is fairly lively and maybe noisy on certain nights.

If one is in decent physical shape, Guanajuato is a great walking city providing one has one leg longer than the other to handle all of the hills. Taxis appeared to be inexpensive. Every trip we took by taxi was $20MXN and we didn't argue.


Thanks CG, the noise was just one of the many complaints regarding that hotel. I love the area, but.....

Casa Zúñiga was also a big contender I have never seen so many 5 out of 5 recommendations. Sadly, they don't advise it for kids under 16.

The Camino Real, also had pretty mixed reviews. We have been to one in Guadalajara. The rooms were very good, and the pool looked just like your picture, however the restaurant left a lot to be desired. Top item on the menu was Maquey worms. Try explaining that to a picky 12 year old.

On our last visit we stayed at the Howard Johnson Parador San Javier. I haven't been able to find reviews since 2004. It had a super dining room, and was kid friendly, however the rooms were dark and needed updating. Their bar, El Pozo, was also quite fantastic, with a real well in one corner.

The search continues. Thanks to all for the comments.

Meanwhile, back here in gringolandia, we have yet another brownout, enough luz for the computers, but not enough for the pump, therefore no water. This is now our third episode in 5 days. Apparently the western part of the highway is virtually impassable at the moment due to mudslides and debris. Yikes. Hopefully the weather will improve for your upcoming trip.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Wed 20 Jul 2011, 12:57 by cheenagringo
We didn't partake of any meals at the Camino Real, so I cannot comment there. We did have a late drink in their bar and it surrounds an old mine shaft. We did have a pre-dinner cocktail at a hotel directly across the street and their menu looked kind of interesting and probably more reasonable than the Camino Real. We had a garden level room with a single king bed and the room was immaculate!

We ended walking down the hill probably 3 or 4 minutes to the El Jardin de los Milagros Restaurant & Bar: https://picasaweb.google.com/Chinagringo/GUANAJUATOGTOMX#5548476231785652770
Behind the walls seen in the photo are wonderful gardens with outside seating. Service was very good and food was well worth it but not overly expensive. There were a variety of customers and the ones with families seemed to be enjoying themselves. I wouldn't hesitate to take young ones there.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Thu 21 Jul 2011, 04:24 by Don Cuevas
In our earlier visits to Guanajuato, we'd stay at the Hotel Socavón, way up on Calle Alhóndiga. It was novel at the time to enter the hotel reception area through a "mine" tunnel entrance. Behind the desk was a collection of antique carbide miner's lamps.

To get to the rooms, however, required climbing anywhere from the primer piso, up one flight from reception, into an attractive patio. From there, more stairs went up to more floors with rooms. When we last stayed there, they had 5 floors with rooms. The restaurant was nothing special.

On our last visit to GTO, about 2 years ago, we ate at Casa Valadez upon arrival. While not quite a gourmet mecca, we thought that the food was good and the surroundings attractive.


As an extra bonus, the men's room, at least, was elegantly outfitted in high style.





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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Thu 21 Jul 2011, 11:18 by raqueteer
Thanks to all. The Camino Real is looking like the best bet here. Apparently the hotel we stayed in last time has been taken over by the Camino Real chain. The rooms now look wonderful, and the original dining room, which we were only at for breakfast has retained its charm, as has the bar.
We'll definitely be trying out the Jardin de los Milagros, and also eat somewhere at the Jardin de Union, which, if I remember correctly, was the area where all the tourist guides congregate.

Cheers.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Thu 21 Jul 2011, 11:53 by cheenagringo
Not sure about the congregation of tourist guides near the Jardin de la Union as we didn't spot any. Our "moto scooter" guide did have us stop at a booth near the mercado but we declined.

There are a number of both inside seating and sidewalk seating restaurants surrounding the Jardin. We happened to choose the VanGogh and had a respectable lunch in their sidewalk area: https://picasaweb.google.com/Chinagringo/GUANAJUATOGTOMX#5548476354898046514
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Mon 01 Aug 2011, 17:01 by raqueteer
Well, we just got back from Guanajuato. All went well, despite a severe lack of road signs, or at least legible ones, leading to an additional hour on the way over.

Camino Real: Rooms: very good, greatly improved from its former incarnation.
Service: very good.
Dining room: entirely stripped of its former character.
El Pozo Bar: also sterile, and unappealing.
Pool: great, super for kids.
Food: Due to the lack of character, we only ate breakfast in the hotel, which
was excellent. We also didn't go to the Pozo bar.

All in all definitely the best choice, with a 12 year old in tow. She loved it.

We did go to the Jardin de los Milagros for a drink, however it was cold and wet, so didn't stay for dinner. On a warm dry evening it would have been perfect. We would go back.

A great place for dinner on the Jardin de La Union was Casa Valadez. Super food, wonderful atmosphere and incredible presentation. A BIG hit with the 12 year old chiquita.

We also ate at El Gallo Pitagorico, which has slid a bit down in terms of menu and service, however our meals were very good, and the view of the city is about the best in town. It overlooks the Jardin and Teatro and you can also see el Catedral. Be sure you are in pretty good health before climbing up at least 100 steps to the restaurant. Seemed like 300 to me.

El Museo de las Momias has gone upscale, and looks every bit like an American Museum. Our 12 year old though it was super entertaining, and took about 30 photos. Since she is planning, at the moment, to go to dental school, it was a relief that she won't have a problem with anatomy class.

That's about all. I doubt that we would go to the Camino Real again, since we don't care about the pool, and prefer older character hotels like the Virrey in Morelia. One other note about the Camino Real was the noise factor. Seems like they have installed some gizmos in the doors that make them sound as if they were being slammed. Next time I'd vote for the Zuñiga B and B.


Thanks to all for the recommendations. Very Happy
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Mon 01 Aug 2011, 17:27 by cheenagringo
Glad to hear you had a good trip to Guanajuato! Earlier I believe you stated that this hotel was another brand? You are correct about the El Pozo bar and we found the service very lacking when we stopped for an after dinner drink. Sorry to hear that it was cold and wet but you probably grasped that the Jardin de los Milagros would be a nice spot on a nice day.

We are going to pass bu Guanajuato this trip due to time constraints and obligations elsewhere. Would like to go back for a couple day visit and would really like to visit Santa Rosa which is up the hill towards Dolores Hidalgo.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Tue 02 Aug 2011, 16:09 by raqueteer
cheenagringo wrote:
Glad to hear you had a good trip to Guanajuato! Earlier I believe you stated that this hotel was another brand? You are correct about the El Pozo bar and we found the service very lacking when we stopped for an after dinner drink. Sorry to hear that it was cold and wet but you probably grasped that the Jardin de los Milagros would be a nice spot on a nice day.

We are going to pass bu Guanajuato this trip due to time constraints and obligations elsewhere. Would like to go back for a couple day visit and would really like to visit Santa Rosa which is up the hill towards Dolores Hidalgo.


Yes, it was a Howard Johnson. They did zip all regarding the rooms, which were dark and dreary, however the dining room was incredibly good as was the Pozo bar. This time the Pozo was never open at happy hour, for us 6 p.m. and never for a bedtime brandy. In this case, 10 p.m. Perhaps they had deluded themselves into thinking we might be tempted to avail ourselves of the minibar, zero chance of that happening. Additionally, the hotel van was available for trips to El Centro, for the exalted price of 100 pesos. Knowing full well that taxis are cheap and plentiful we said no thanks, crossed the street, while they watched, and got a cab for 40 pesos, the new going rate for anywhere in the city.

On reflection, this was an excellent example of how to take a glorious old building, strip out all that made it great, toss in some "modern" amenities, then up the price to 2800 pesos rack rate before taxes for a standard room, which we did not pay. I had a lengthy negotiation with reservations before parting with credit card information. It is clean, and safe, breakfasts were excellent, the pool an essential for kids, however no one ate dinner there, and very few utilized the bar. It's a far cry from the fabulous Camino Real in Tuxtla Gutierrez, however for us, on this trip, it worked out very well.

Jardin de los Milagros was an entirely different story. Great atmosphere, an interesting menu, and some special effects such as handmade ice cream at the table.

Have great trip next time. BTW, those room rates are pretty negotiable. Wink

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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Tue 02 Aug 2011, 17:25 by cheenagringo
We did a drop in with no reservations about this time of year, Kathy went in to negotiate the room while I did some organizing of stuff in the van that we wanted. They started out around $1500MXN/night and she negotiated that price down to $1000MXN for a garden level room with a king size bed.
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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Wed 03 Aug 2011, 10:14 by raqueteer
cheenagringo wrote:
We did a drop in with no reservations about this time of year, Kathy went in to negotiate the room while I did some organizing of stuff in the van that we wanted. They started out around $1500MXN/night and she negotiated that price down to $1000MXN for a garden level room with a king size bed.



Jeebus H. these guys are getting greedy. They started at 2800 MXN, and I got them down to 1700 MXN. We had a room on the 5th floor with 2 double beds. Did I say noisy? They did include breakfast for us, which was excellent, and no extra charge for la niña. However I would have to say that it was not worth more than 120 U.S. by anyones' standards.

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Re: Guanajuato recommendations.
Post on Wed 03 Aug 2011, 10:36 by cheenagringo
I am not sure if we had breakfast included as we are not breakfast eaters. We carry our own travel coffee maker and bring a favorite coffee with us when we travel to satisfy our morning needs. I neglected to say that they charged our credit card twice but it was a simple matter to resolve.

Did you spot the Castillo Santa Cecilia castle hotel just above the Camino Real? Would like to walk through this establishment but from the TripAdvisor reviews, we have no interest in staying there.[img][/img]
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