The Alluring Culture of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
Admiring a stylish group of Millennials who just jetted in from L.A. was only part of the colorful show at Rosewood's swanky rooftop bar, Luna. It is an ideal loungy stage to watch the sun dip behind the mountains coloring the sky with hues of magenta, rose, navy and plum. My husband, Fred, and I along with friends savor a proudly-priced handcrafted mezcal cocktail and take in the show. Luna draws an elite crowd from all corners of the Earth to sip and sup on artisan tapas like feta stuffed Baja shrimp on a crispy black bean cake.
This is only one glimpse of what you can see in San Miguel de Allende (SMA) situated at 6234' on a mountainous plateau in the northern state of Guanajuato just four hours drive from Mexico City (and less than half that from Leon). Aside from upper crust tourists, San Miguel represents a diverse working culture thriving on art, entertainment, design, fashion, food and drink.
Agarra una margarita y Vamonos!
Grab a margarita and let's go!
An UNESCO World Heritage Site with a population of approximately 150,000, SMA is one of those cities that feels like a town yet has something for everyone except a beach. Art lovers and artists flock to this colorful Spanish colonial city for its thriving scene of galleries, museums, landscapes and Baroque architecture. Food lovers follow as SMA's hundreds of restaurants of all genres compete for a following. Designers from around the world in fashion, furniture, interiors and exteriors gather here to experience the latest design trends. There is nothing not to like here. It is a progressive old city that draws a cultured set including retirees who become so enamored on their first visit that they end up making SMA their permanent home. Young and old come for it all including the warm days, cool nights and stunning arid landscapes.
If a cultural getaway is in your future, go to San Miguel. It is a fabulous, out-of-the-ordinary trip. Explore our highlights to help guide you in your journey.
Where to Stay:
Where to Eat:
La Parada (delicious Peruvian), The Restaurant (upscale), Azotea (cool and amazing shrimp tacos!), El Pato Barbacoa y Mixiotes (authentic), Café Rama (cozy)
Where to Drink:
El Palomar (upscale with views!), Atrio (hip rooftop), Quince (notable rooftop), Ten Ten Pie (strong margs), Luna at the Rosewood (chi chi rooftop), Sky Lounge at Hotel Nena (rooftop with great views), La Mexcaleria (quaint), La Azotea (well hidden and hip rooftop)
Where to Shop:
Mixta (interesting), Fabrica de La Aurora (oh yes!), Tao (a must for furniture design), Marquesa de Mancera (cool), Doce 18 Concept House (interesting)
Where to Seek Art:
Fabrica de La Aurora, Mask Museum, Galeria Atotonilco, Galeria Casa Diana
What Else To Do:
Nirvana Spa and lunch (worth the taxi ride), Sense Spa at Rosewood Hotel
Fly into the city of Leon (1.5 hours drive) or Fly into Mexico City (4 hours drive)
Hotels will book you a private car to transport you to and from the airport.