CHANGE UNIVERSE: Magazine Jewels
Mexico City | HotelJune 28, 2013

Downtown Stylish Viceregal Hotel

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I checked out from Condesa DF. I am now on my way to ‘ El Zocalo’, right in the heart of the old city where the Aztecs first settled and afterwards the Spaniards built churches and palaces using the existing stones that were part of the Aztec pyramids . The ride is absolutely fun, At times I am under the impression to be in Cuba. The old cars, the wedding avenue, the textured baroque buildings, the gold and jewelry vendors.

Grupo Habita 's“Downtown” is settled on a magnificent palace, witness of the XVII century architecture and comfortably next to other  And, yes! that's going to be by new home for the few days!

Known as the “Palacio de los Condes de Miravalle”, the red volcanic rock walls, the multiple doors, window quarry frames and the handmade cement tiles, along with the glorious patios and a spectacular stone-forge staircase provide the building the unique flavor of the Mexican vice regal style.

The access floor welcomes the visitor into an interior patio of triple height, a clear representation of the important colonial heritage. The ground floor has two other inner courtyards, which separate the spaces and surround the corridors resembling a Hacienda.

The patios are the main distributors of space, allowing natural light and ventilation into the hotel and consequently decreasing the use of energy, artificial light and air conditioning.

For a few seconds suddenly,  as a large rain falls from a heavy forecast sky falls on us. A large wooden door opens to an inner patio. I am in the world of  the " Game of Thrones" having " royal  guards " and security taking my luggage in,

The preserved the original façades and the main walls are kept itact by the architects but a contemporary look is  proposed, attributing a new identity and character to the building.

 Restaurante Azul Histórico, which quite comfortably seats 100, fills the central patio of the 17th century palace of the counts of Miravalle.  Surrounded by first-floor balconies, the open-air restaurant is crowned by towering 100-year-old laurel trees.  I asked manager Gonzalo Serrano Orozco how patrons would be protected during the Mexico City summer rainy season.  He gestured at the sky.  "We have an enormous cover to spread over the entire patio." and there you go , it's in action as we speak.

Table setting at Azul Histórico.  The tables, specially made for the restaurant, are hand-branded with the names of streets in the Centro Histórico.  The small blue enamelware pots of greenery give a touch of living nature to your table.  The jícaras (dried and carved half-gourds) are for drinking mezcal.

I order quickly a  Classic huevos motuleños (two fried eggs on tortillas, with black beans,and peas, all bathed in a salsa picosa--spicy red sauce), and my husband chilaquiles rojos con arrachera--fried tortilla pieces cooked until just tender with delicious and grilled-just-right steak slices , Our lunch will be ready in a few minutes, just enough time to check in from our new rooms.

We walk  on a iconic stone-forge staircase with intricate handrails sitting alongside grey volcanic rock walls and handmade cement tiles. The 17 rooms and suites possess a stripped-back, bohemian-chic elegance into a beautiful mural, a spectacular copper elevator and tree tops surrounded by arches.

This palace grandeur is contrasted by the edgy character of the immense terrace which covers the entire rooftop. From these sun-soaked surroundings guests can get a glimpse over the historic buildings, while cooling off in the pool or sipping on a drink from the bar. This might seem  the four Season in Milan, but no, dear friends, I am in Mexico City really.... Superbe environmen and yet so modernly chic!

The guest rooms are located in the first and second level and are attractively designed in neutral tones, spiced up with retro lamps and custom designed furniture with a raw industrial edge, The traditional red brick is protagonist through the interiors. By taking advantage of the nobility of this material, we designed a lattice which is constant in the rooms, furniture and walls.

They range from the simple and unadorned, decorated with little more than grey walls and tiled floors, to the stylish, with light timber detailing, exposed concrete walls and vaulted high brick ceilings. Street-side rooms have balconies to take in the views, while the others look over the lush and perfectly manicured patio.

The rooftop is equipped with a restaurant and pool, offering panoramic views of the city and crowning the project, yellow, very yellow reclining chairs overlooking other wonderful colonial landmarks on the cobbled streets of this UNESCO World Heritage site. Wow! I love it  Moises and Rafael Micha, Thank you for the regal experience!

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