Casa Mexilio

I have always felt that there is a special poetry of place.  A certain color, light and shadow that is totally unique.  The rooftop garden at Hotel Casa Mexilio is a lovely poetic place in Mérida to sit, have a beer and gaze out at the night lights of the city under a star filled sky.  What is equally magical is the journey itself, for to get to the rooftop garden, you must climb serpentine stairways and cross narrow catwalks above tropical trees and vines and over a cenote-like pool.

Casa Mexilio is widely recognized as one of the best small hotels in Mérida.  You will also find reviews of it in Lonely Planet, as well as Trip Advisor.   The hotel is a well maintained historic home in the center of Mérida, close to the Santiago area and just a few blocks from the Plaza Principal.  It is a colonial gem that will not fail to touch your heart.

From the deceptively nondescript exterior, you enter into a most magical place that answers the question we all wonder at: what is it that lies behind those walls?

Starting with guest entry and past the grand sala where once a family entertained, you ascend the first narrow stairway to the beautifully stenciled dining area and small bar.  You can glimpse the rooms and inner courtyard of the hotel as you make your way to the rooftop, and of course you must stop at the small bar on your way to pick up your drink(s).  So as not to miss the beauty in the details, pay particular attention to the artwork and furnishings as you go.  There are 10 guest rooms at Hotel Casa Mexilio, each having a special story.  As you walk through the hotel you will undeniably know that people were born, lived and died here.

The Casa Mexilio con taberna is located on Calle 68, No. 495, x 59 y 57 (  The staff of the hotel is friendly and accommodating, and with the price of a beer comes your ticket of admission to a spectacular view of Merida.  The rooftop garden is a quiet oasis high above the noise of  passing traffic on Calle 68 below.  It is a place where you can talk in whispers or just hear your own thoughts.  It is an intimate and romantic setting on a cool January afternoon or a warm March evening.

There is a slow and unhurried pace to hotel and gardens, so I encourage you to sip your drink slowly, sit for a long time and take in the remarkable landscape of the city that is stretched out before you.  For the price of a cerveza, in the daytime or at night, Casa Mexilio, qualifies as one of the best and unspoiled secrets of Mérida.

By Doug Tanoury

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