These architecturally stunning Mexican vacation rentals are perfect for design lovers
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Mexico has design fever. From the historic port city of Campeche in Yucatán, with its pastel villas and charming malecón, to the whitewashed adobe-lined streets of Pátzcuaro, a Michoacán town popular for its Día de Muertos festivities, renowned architects are creating avant-garde residences that can be reserved by discerning visitors. A stay at one of these houses is an opportunity to spend quality time with regional crafts and materials as well as explore a corner of the country like a local.
Over 40 years, Mexican architect Diego Villaseñor and his wife, landscape architect Ana María Maldonado, built this five-bedroom home on the outskirts of this town 90 minutes south of Mexico City. Relying on building materials such as locally sourced stone, adobe and native hardwood, the structure references the surrounding tropical and temperate forests and the rugged Sierra de Ajusco-Chichinauhtzin range nearby. . The architecture of Casa Ayehualco creates moments that invite a deep connection with the landscape, such as a cool, dimly lit stone passageway ending in a courtyard that perfectly frames the neighboring peaks. The artwork has a similar philosophy at first: a terracotta tunic by Xawery Wolski hangs in the kitchen, while traditional folk art figurines – in this case, small ceramic queens, or queens , with scenes of rural life beautifully depicted on their dresses. — decorate the living room.
Behind an unassuming ocher facade in Guadalupe, a tranquil neighborhood overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, lies Refugio Bajo Las Hojas. Mother-son owners Georgina Esparragoza and Daniel Manos enlisted Mexico City-based architect Paolo Sarra and Mérida-based firm Punto Arquitectónico to transform the long, narrow historic home into a series of airy, interconnected spaces. The company has embraced materials like palm and chokum, an ancient Mayan stucco, which have been used to build and decorate homes throughout the Yucatán Peninsula for centuries. The entrance spills into a traditional open kitchen with a large communal dining table topped with palm leaf fabrics made by artisans in the nearby town of Becal (they do their weaving in underground caves where the humidity holds the fronds flexible). The dining room opens onto the centerpiece of the property, a courtyard pool framed by exposed limestone walls and decorated with playful ceramic animals – a hedgehog perches on the side of the pool, while monkeys swing from the trees. At the back of the house are nine earth-toned bedrooms, with woven light fixtures and tzalam wood furniture made by artisans in the village of Temozón.
This five-bedroom home is a respite of shade and quiet in the middle of this designated Pueblo Mágico 35 miles southwest of Michoacán’s capital, Morelia. During the restoration of the villa, the Basque architect Miguel Arregui and the French owner Sandra Chollet, previously a buyer at Barneys New York, worked a delicate alchemy, artfully blending the overall design with the rich artisanal traditions of the region. One of Chollet’s most treasured family heirlooms, an antique Algerian wedding chest that belonged to his grandparents, sits in the entryway; in the living room hang copper light fixtures in the shape of calla lilies designed by Arregui and produced by master coppersmiths from the nearby village of Santa Clara del Cobre. The rooms, overlooking the scents of jasmine, mandarin and lemon trees of the three interior courtyards, have cream-coloured textured walls inspired by a Moroccan plaster technique and bedspreads that have been woven at the textile factory of the heritage La Fábrica de San Pedro in nearby Uruapan. .
This article originally appeared in the April 2022 issue of Condé Nast Traveler. Subscribe to the magazine here.