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Often named among the most picturesque cities in Mexico, San Miguel de Allende boasts a historic center with narrow cobbled streets, leafy courtyards, and well-preserved buildings from the 17th and 18th centuries. A Unesco World Heritage Site, it’s become increasingly popular among tourists and expats thanks in part to its starring role in 2003’s “Once Upon a Time in Mexico.”
These hotels and resorts provide the ideal base for enjoying its magnificent architecture, handicraft shops, botanical gardens, organic farm-to-table restaurants, and more.
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The luxurious Rosewood San Miguel de Allende is located in the heart of town and offers a variety of activities, including wine tastings, art workshops, and half-day horseback riding tours. If you prefer relaxing, there are three pools to lounge by and a lavish spa. Look forward to refreshing drinks at the Luna Rooftop Tapas Bar with spectacular city views and dining on Mexican fare at the highly acclaimed 1826 Restaurant. Rooms have wood-beamed ceilings, handcrafted furnishings, and local artwork with amenities like flat-screen TVs, terraces or balconies, fireplaces, and soaking tubs.
Perfectly blending Old World colonial charm and modernity, Live Aqua Urban Resort offers a tranquil setting slightly removed from the hustle and bustle of the city with sculptures by Mexican artists dotted throughout the property. Guests can enjoy decadent treatments at the Feel Urban Spa by Live Aqua which includes a hammock-outfitted outdoor pool, four restaurants and bars, a gym, and fitness classes. Room highlights include feather mattresses, glass-walled bathrooms and large soaking tubs along with unique amenities like a record player with LPs ranging from Madonna to Mozart.
Just minutes from the city’s central plaza, this romantic boutique hotel sits within a converted Spanish colonial mission house and comes complete with a Spaghetti-Western-style church bell tower. Once the residence of former president Luis Echeverría, it’s located atop one of the highest bluffs in town providing magnificent views while surrounded by an impressive cactus garden. Rooms are all individually decorated with Mexican rugs on terracotta floors, antique furnishings, luxurious bed linens, and gas fireplaces. One of the best places to be is on the upper balcony sipping a margarita while soaking up a view of the San Miguel skyline.
Hacienda El Santuario is spread throughout three colonial townhouses with grounds that include a bougainvillea-filled garden. Located on a quiet street just a few minutes’ walk from leafy Benito Juarez park, it includes a rustic restaurant with an ornate fireplace and offers relaxing spa treatments. Rooms include gorgeous decor, with Mexican textiles and folk art and crafts, free Wi-Fi and flat-screen TVs. Some include four-poster beds, balconies, and/or fireplaces.
Blending into its historic surroundings, this hotel is made up of multiple colonial mansions and is located within a number of popular cultural attractions, including the beautiful Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel Cathedral and the San Miguel de Allende Historical Museum. Despite its central location, it offers plenty of tranquility for relaxation. The property includes an outdoor pool, a spa, and an often raved-about restaurant, Andanza. Rooms include antique furnishings, some with stone fireplaces, along with modern comforts like Wi-Fi and TVs.
Hotel Matilda is different from the rest as it’s a more modern hotel with chic interior design and contemporary art. There’s an infinity pool and spa offering body treatments and massages, while its elegant on-site Moxi Restaurant features a fresh “farm-to-table” concept. It also provides an ideal location in the heart of the city less than a block north of Juarez Park while rooms include upscale amenities like 40″ flat-screen TVs, iPod docking stations, free Wi-Fi, and MALIN+GOETZ bath products.
Located only a few blocks from the main plaza and famous Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel, it’s hard to beat La Morada if you’re looking for a spot within walking distance to just about everything. It has a beautiful architectural style with arched entryways, stone columns, exposed wood beams, and a lovely inner courtyard with seating areas. Amenities are limited due to the size of the hotel but rooms include artwork and handmade wood furnishings, cable TV, DVD players and free Wi-Fi. Some also have fireplaces. On the rooftop terrace, guests can look forward to soaking in the hot tub while enjoying city views.
The intimate L’Ôtel Chiquitos has an elegant guesthouse vibe, tucked along a side street just a three-minute walk from Museo del Juguete Popular Mexicano. Guests enjoy a private rooftop terrace, plunge pool and views over the colonial city, along with complimentary bicycles and a relaxing courtyard garden patio. In-room spa treatments, including massages, facials and scrubs, can be arranged, and regular yoga and Pilates classes are hosted too. Rooms include flat-screen TVs, Blu-ray and DVD players, iPod docks, minibars, fireplaces, and complimentary bottled water. All are extra spacious and come with balconies and outdoor showers too. The Owner’s Suite is especially impressive with its own private garden.
Casa Adela sits atop a hill overlooking San Miguel de Allende, providing a transformative escape on an 8-acre estate. Originally crafted by artists, spaces were designed to maximize mountain and valley views. Enjoy a hot stone massage, fragrant gardens, stunning sunsets, and farm-fresh cuisine in between activities like horseback riding through the canyon. There’s a hot-spring-fed pool, yoga sessions, and a rooftop for a cocktail hour too, plus a free daily shuttle can bring you to San Miguel de Allende’s city center. Rooms include free bottled water, coffee/tea, and Argan Meadows bath products. The Panoramic Suites are especially impressive, framing views of the mountains through floor-to-ceiling windows – you can even watch the colorful sunsets from a soaking bathtub large enough for two.
Antigua Capilla was built around a former chapel (capilla) and sits just down the street from San Miguel’s oldest church. An intimate property, there are only eight rooms, all with their own unique personality highlighting Mexico’s traditional arts. From the rooftop terrace, one can enjoy a panoramic view that stretches all the way to the mountains that rise above Guanajuato. Rooms all have brick ceilings with fans and feature flat-screen TVs with premium channels, free Wi-Fi, iPod docks and fireplaces.
Nirvana Retreat definitely lives up to its name, made up of 10 rooms that cling to the side of a bluff overlooking Río Laja. While it feels as if it’s worlds away from the city center, a 15-minute drive will bring you to the heart of all the action. It has a 90-foot lap pool that’s filled with water from the hot springs and horses available for riding. Yoga and meditation classes are available while the on-site restaurant serves creative fusion fare that can be enjoyed in the garden. Free bicycles are available for exploring while the rooms have the feel of a treehouse and include a high, comfy bed and free Wi-Fi.
Set within an 18th-century building, Hotel Casa Rosada offers an adults-only stay in a colonial gem just a minute’s walk from the Historic Museum of San Miguel de Allende and Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel. Dining can be enjoyed at the on-site Xipal restaurant and bar on the central outdoor patio or the indoor dining room. Breakfast is complimentary. Spa services are available, while rooms and suites all come with flat-screen TVs and Wi-Fi, some include four-poster beds and balconies.
Set within an old colonial courtyard building, Hotel Casa Primavera is located about a 10-minute drive from the historic city center, although guests can easily reach it via the property’s free shuttle. It includes an outdoor pool, hot tub, and a fabulous spa with a sauna and steam room. Its on-site restaurant serves Mexican fusion dishes while the traditionally decorated rooms feature flat-screen TVs, free Wi-Fi, minibars, and balconies that overlook the pool or grounds.
Just a third of a mile from the Church of St. Michael the Archangel, Hotel Casa Blanca 7 is a five-star boutique property with just 10 rooms. All include flat-screen satellite TVs, Wi-Fi, air conditioning, and garden views. The on-site restaurant is highly acclaimed, focused on Mediterranean cuisine with local ingredients – guests enjoy a complimentary breakfast and room service is available too.
This 18th-century mansion is the former home of a fashion photographer, steeped in artistry and romance. The original stone fireplaces and cobbled courtyard infuse lots of colonial charm, while a Tibetan fountain and Indian archways add an exotic touch. On the roof you’ll find an enticing terrace with a cocktail bar, spa tent and a hot tub, all of which overlook the surrounding rooftops. There are only six rooms, each of which features an impressive selection of antiques and works of art from around the world. All have Nespresso coffee machines, flat-screen TVs, high-end bath products and free bottled water.