When you think of mercado districts in a Mexican city, you tend not to think that there could be a neat, clean, and comfortable hotel amid the raffish refuse of banana peel streets lit by avocado oil lamps. But, take my hand, I'm a stranger in paraiso:
Now, it's true that this hotel, on Calle Los Mangos # 5, Centro, is closer to Paseo del Palmar than it is to the central fish market, but it's only a matter of stepping out the gate of the hotel to find the wealth of offerings of Zihuatanejo's nearby mercado.
A little map is in order here. (I think it's cool that the streets of the mercado district are mostly named after fruits.)
View Larger Map
As I mentioned earlier, I found this hotel when I went last year to nearby Calle Tamarindos in search of tomates criollos. I'd been curious for sometime what a hotel outside of the Calle Adelita—Colonia La Madera Gringo Gulch might be like. Sra. Paty, the manager, showed me some very pleasant rooms, and so this year I cast all doubt aside and booked a room over Skype for $500 pesos a night.
|A room like ours, from the hotel website.|
The entrance is easy and straightforward and there was sufficient interior parking in the central patio and under the shelter of the building.
Paty and her son, Rubén (fluent in English) helped us select a room. The rooms are in two basic categories: larger with either two camas matrimoniales or a king bed, facing Calle Los Mangos and with AC but usually no fan (a couple of corner rooms have sink and kitchen counters; OR smaller rooms facing the patio, with two camas matrimoniales, facing the patio. We decided on one of the latter.
This page describes the rooms and the services available, including rental of a refrigerator. I see that the water is solar heated, and with one early morning exception, we had the hottest, most abundant supply of hot water.
Our room was adequate to our needs, with the exception of sufficient electrical outlets to recharge the various electronic devices we carry. Up until our last day, I was scheduling charge time for laptop, iPod and cell phone atop the toilet tank, which for me is not a desirable place to put expensive electronics. On our last full day, Rubén revealed that there was a far more convenient outlet behind the night table between the two beds.
Closet space and hangers were all right, and the furled hammock strung along the length of the room made a handy spot for hanging clothing, as well as a guideline to the bathroom during night time forays. There is a plywood shelf in the closet, which looks like a desk, but is not.
The small dresser was against the one window, which increased privacy but somewhat diminished ventilation. I used it as a laptop desk, but its small cushioned bench grew uncomfortable after about 20 to 30 minutes.
We used the ceiling fan almost constantly, plus the AC during the hottest part of the day. Paty told me that really, the AC was supposed to be used between 8 p.m.and 8 a.m., but she allowed us to us it when we wished, no matter the hour.
The pool was nice and well kept, although it wasn't useable until 2 p.m., which might be a negative to many water loving guests. I'm not sure why this rule, other than perhaps giving the chlorine powder a chance to dissolve and dissipate.
An odd thing is that guest rooms are not supplied with bottles of agua purificada, but there is a self service garrafon (jug) near the reception desk. Bring your own empty bottles. The hotel is flanked by shops selling miscelanea, including water and refrescos. I also got some interesting, bi-lingual conversation at he deshechables store to the left of the hotel entrance.
I did look into some of the larger, Calle Mangos facing rooms, and I decided that #7, on the segundo piso, was optimal if we decide to stay there again. It has 2 double beds, AC, a ceiling fan, a small balcony overlooking the street, cross ventilation, a larger closet, and the rest of the amenities.
|Not # 7, but similar|
|L-R: Luis, Rubén, Paty|
If you want beach access, this is not for you. It's probably a 10 to 15 minute walk to Playa La Madera. If, on the other hand, you want to immerse yourself in the barrio, and a short walk to the center of Zihua, you might like it very much.
Calle Mangos No.5
Zihuatanejo, Guerrero, México
Tel: +52 (755) 544-87-45