It looks like a quaint little hillside town with crooked
cobbled streets and many buildings needing repairs. But don’t be fooled.
There is a degree of sophistication here that captures the spirit of
holiday. Not only is San Miguel d’Allende sprucing up its roads and facades,
its opening new restaurants and hotels all the time. One can rent an
apartment for a reasonable price (in US $) or a larger condo or casita or
you can rent a large or small house either near the center of town or in the
On the other hand, if housekeeping and cooking are not
your forte, there are some wonderful hotels and more restaurants than you
can try in two months, eating out daily.
This small, unobtrusive hotel, just behind the main
cathedral is at Cuadrante 3. Look at their web site at
If that isn’t grand enough, just around the corner near
Ten Pie Restaurant is the Casa Rosado, a beautiful central multi level
The web sites for these two hotels will tell you all you
need to know. Their photos are better than mine. Two others that I can
recommend for comfort and location are, Casa Lisa next to Juarez Park. It
looks like a homey bed and breakfast but it is much more. It has luxurious
Mexican tradition with spa services. See
www.casa Liza.com or fax 152 7322.
Others worth looking into are Hotel Parador San Sebastian
on Mesones 7 Fax 152 7084. It’s classic and historical surrounding a large
If you’re interested in food prepared by
master chefs in a traditionally Mexican way, I offer the following. But you
must understand that this is only a small list of what is available. By next
week I will have discovered others.
In the heart of the city center our
favorite place for a meal or a drink including hot chocolate is, San
Augustin at San Francisco 21.This cozy room is a great meeting place or
somewhere to unwind in the evening.
It is a creation of the Mexican actress
Margarita Gralia and her husband Ariel Bianco. There is a full menu of
breakfasts and traditional Mexican cuisine but they specialize in
chocolates, Argentine empanadas, enchiladas suizas and breast of chicken I
always add the famous churros which go well with a hot drink.
Unlike many restaurants in San Miguel,
they are open until 11 PM and midnight on Saturday.
Last night I attended a farewell party
for friends at the exquisite Vivoli Café , an Italian Trattoria at Hernandez
Macias #66. Not only were the décor sophisticated and the accordion music
soothing, but the food was beyond expectations. For the first time here, I
ordered salmon. It was well presented and done to perfection with mashed
potatoes and pesto sauce. The dishes are authentic and their specialty is
Spinach Ravioli and Gnocci.
We were too late for the 4-6 PM early bird special but
what we ate was worth the price of around $25 per person US. Tel: 415 152
|There are far too many good places to eat, be
they bagel restaurants for breakfast, fast food places (even a
Starbucks) for a snack, quaint places for lunch and both patio or
indoor restaurants with atmosphere. Some favorites of my friends and
Tio Lucas which adds jazz (Fri. &
Sat at 9 PM) to unparalleled Caesar salads, meat, fish and chicken.
Mesones 103 opposite the main theater, Tel: 415 152 4996.
As you walk around, you discover interesting
places to suit your taste. We personally enjoy Ole Ole (Loreto#66)
with its matador décor, Hecho En Mexico (Made in Mexico)near the
Instituto and a tiny upstairs restaurants Aqui Es Mexico (This is
Mexico) with a truly Mexican feeling established by the staff and
We must also include:
El Pegaso Corregidora 6
El Correo, Correo 23 Phone; 415 12 4951
La Grotta Cuadrante #5 Tel: 415 152 4119 Includes Tango
Bugambilia Hidalgo #42 Traditional Mexican. Phone: 415 152
0127 (discount for cash)
Casa Payo is a splurge at Zacateros #21
El Harem is the best Lebanese Restaurant at Correo and
Murillo #7 where you can have a whole meal or just a snack of hummus or baba
You can find delicious ribs at Don Quixote on Pila Seca or
just a burger and onion rings for under $5.00 US.
Near the food market there are butcher shops, grocery
stores and places that sell whole Bar B Q chickens, cooked before your eyes
and ready to eat. A great array of vegetables is available daily in the
No, you won’t go hungry in San Miguel. We have had a quick
lunch for under $10 for two or a more fancy dinner for about $50 with wine.
We may eat in restaurants more often here, but what are
Each time I walk downtown, I find another food treasure.
Friends discover small out of the way places too, but tonight I hit the
jackpot. On a whim, I looked in to what looked like a small bar. I was
immediately greeted by a gentleman who turned out to be the owner of the
restaurant-bar BERLIN. In a charming manner he offered us a table of our
choice. Little did I know the various small rooms would soon be filled with
sophisticated and chatty diners.
We settled on a lovely fish fried in breaded potatoes and
a savory goulash for me. Wine and/or beer did nicely in this art filled
atmosphere. We opted to wait the 25 minutes they said it would take for
their special soufflé for my wife while I settled for their fruit pie and
By the time we left the various rooms were still filled
while the charming owner, Delve Kapustin, saw us to the door.
He explained that the Berlin is open 365 days a year for
dinner and by the looks of those at the bar, there seemed to be a selection
Mr. Kapustin explained that aside from the restaurant, he
operated Viejas San Miguel, a company that transports people from San Miguel
to various airports by shuttle. He’s a good man to know.
The restaurant is at Umarin #19, Phone: +52 4150 154 9432
For information about airport transfers go to
You can rest assured that this writer will visit the
Berlin restaurant Bar again soon. Tell him I sent you.
For travel service call him at +52 (415) 101 2568 or go to
Sollano #4, Int.3
San Miguel is a charming town and interesting place for
sightseeing. Here you should visit thee central Jardin the hub of activity,
La Parroquia the symbol of san Miguel, the Museo Casa de Allende the
birthplace of the city’s namesake, the various temples and the nearby
Santuario de Atotonilco UNESCO World Heritage Site. It cost only 50cents to
get there by bus.
Let me know if you want other suggestions. I have a long
list but start with these. Bon Appetite!
I must close now…It’s time for lunch and so many places to
You can Contact Professor Arnie Greenberg at:
Over the past few years, Professor
Greenberg has traveled with groups to France, Italy, Spain, Greece,
Budapest, Vienna, Salzburg, Prague and both Sorrento and the Bay of
Naples plus most of Sicily. His tours traveled to the far reaches of the
globe including Italy and most of
China (Beijing -Hong Kong) and to Russia where his group cruised the waters
from St.Petersburg to Moscow.
"He took a group to Greece and another to northern
Russia. In Nov 07 he took a tour group to much of India and ended his tour
groups by revisiting France. He now travels with his wife and friends. They
winter in Argentina or San Miguel Mexico. His newly found spare time
is taken up with his painting and writing. "I must write every day." His
current work is a cautionary manual for would-be tour leaders.. "So
You Want To Be A Tour Leader."
Arnie now travels with friends. He continues writing
Travel articles about unusual places but often concentrates on novel
writing. Two books based on French Art will be published this year.
Keep reading his web for travel ideas. His next
novel HELLSTORM'S Folly,
will be available this fall. He now
lives in British Columbia.
www.top-travel-ideas.com or contact him directly at
(More about the writer.)