Beware, this is not a package for those seeking indulgentluxury at a 5 Star beach side resort! There are no beaches...no ocean.just a lovely little Spanish Colonial city in a beautiful valley surrounded by volcanic mountains.
The luxury in this holiday package comes from the opportunities to experience the art, the history and the tastes of old Colonial Mexico!
The owners of Meson Sacristies de Capuchins have taken meticulous care in restoring this 350 year old private residence (now offering six suites), tastefully furnished and appointed with antiques (many of which are discretely marked available for purchase). Note: There is no central A/C system.only small mobile (and not terribly effect) air conditioning unitsso choose your travel seasons wisely by checking ahead for the general weather at the time you wish to travel! We were comfortable during our entire stay.
When the massiveantique exterior doors to the street are closed, you arewecomed into a pampered world of indulgences. The staff takes great effort to anticipate and accommodate your needs and desires.
For five mornings, the Executive Chef, Alonso, artfully instructed us in multi course cooking classes (we took great care in our food preparation, since the dishes were served to as lunch each day). As we are vegetarians, Chef Alonso, restructed his normal menus and included only dishes we could cook and eat! Mariana, another staff member, was always on hand to handle all of the English translation, just to ensure we understood the written instructions and cooked everything correctly. Victor was our waiter and trustybar man and frequently demonstrated his creativity and magic touches with tequila.
Chef Alonso also escorted us to the central market one morning to experience shopping for fresh produce. He introduced us to his favorite organic farmersand assisted us in shopping and selecting all ofthe ingrediantsfor one of our cooking classes later in the day.
Puebla exudesColonial history and art treasures.The historicdistrict of the cityisatreasure of lovely restored buildings andoffers numerous opportunitesfor exploritive daily walks. One afternoon we were treated to a walking tour of the central historic district, conducted by Carlos Rivos [an excellent English speaking guide available through the hotel]. Our package included admission to the Mueso Amparo..a recently renovated historic buildingwhich housesan impressive private pre-Columbian exhibition.
Evenings are relaxing andpleasant and can be spent sitting outside at various cafes surround the main square or exploring the art studios located in the back streets.
If you are fortunate to visit Puebla, make the effort to stay several nights at Meson Sacristia de Capuchinas and their sister property, Sacristia de la Compania. The food is authentic and service is delightful.
We hated to leave our new "amigos" but look forward to an extended return visit in the near future.
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Since originally writing this entry, the owners of Meson Sacrista de Capuchinas have sold the property. The same cooking course is now offered exclusively at Meson Sacrista de la Compania.
Message Edited by omegaet on 06-29-2010 03:56 PM
Message Edited by omegaet on 06-29-2010 03:56 PM
obrienkf....you're probably correct. Let's see if we can figure out how to make the shift.....otherwise, we can just start a new thread in "Destinations" and blow out this "Adventure" posting.....although, if you were to talk to the couple who had just completed their cooking class and were departing when we arrived.....they would say it was an "Adventure"....since they made the serious mistake of eating some "street cuisine" the second night into their visit and spent many hours worshiping the white throne.
I couldn't agree more with Omegaet's cookingadventure in Puebla. I like to emphasizethat the Mesones' (both properties - Campania & Capuchinas)best asset is its people. They really went out of their way to make sure our experience was completely satisfying. We have nothing but great things to say about our stay. The food was first class and plentiful; the accommodations deluxe; and the Pueblan history rich and eye opening.
The owner is also a wonderful man, and on meeting him knew that he takes pride in his establishments and treats his staff with great respect.
Puebla is very Mexican and very spiritual. In fact, last count has the town owning up to over 360 Catholic churches. At least one on every block! Some are just jaw dropping beautiful.
We were there in early December and the weather was sunny and averaged around 25 celcius during the day. Just right - not too hot and not too cold. Evenings a bit cooler so a sweater or light jacket a must if one wants to wonder the lovely town square where often there's free music and live entertainment.
Talevara pottery is made famous from this area and a visit to Uriarte's Talevara factory is very worthwhile. The factory still employs the same methods in making the pottery as from 400 years ago. Count yourseIflucky if you get 87 year old Uriarte himself to give you an eye opening 60-minutetour.
Cholula is the biggest pyramid in the world and is just 10 kms from Puebla. We highly recommend Carlos, the English speaking tour guide, who gives exceptional toursto Cholula and to other must see sites in the area.
To sum up our trip, we loved every minute of it! We found the people totally warming, Puebla a very lively and safe town, the food fantastic, and the history amazing. We will certainly be back for more and highly recommend this trip to allgourmets, historians andconnoisseurs of the good life.
As a matter of fact, I had dinner there! The restaurant is very elegant, food and wine fabulous. We were lucky enough to meet someone who was staying at the Purificadora and got a tour of his suite and the hotel amenities. If one likes ultra modern facilities, and being pampered - this is the place.
We spoke to the restaurant manager who told us (I think) that Purificadora is part of a Mexican ultra luxury hotel chain. This is its latest addition.
Mountie, I think your intuition is correct, Purificadorawill makea classy LL addition.
mountie...the hotel was under construction when we visited Puebla for our cooking classes. I'm sure, after reading the posting by slimzone, the Hotel La Purificadora is the latest in "happening" hotels. We enjoy staying at modernboutique properties, however, we have no regrets in staying where we did. BTW, the location of the Hotel La Purificadora is at the Convention Center In Puebla, not in the Historic District (which we think adds a great deal of character to the visit). Since the Hotel La Purficiadora is one of several properties owned by the parent organization, there may very well be an opportunity for LL to strike up a relationship.
The experience at the Mesones is very unique and we also loved our stay. A great part of it is due to their locations in the historic centre of Puebla.The Campaniaproperty just around the corner from the historic working university, and the Capuchina is next to the Museum. Purificadora on the other handis next to the convention centre,a 15 minute walk from the historic centre. Its ambience is different, much like a 5-star hotel in a big citybut also very nice.
We stumbled across an open Christmasmarket just outside the historic centre, near the Purificadora which is quite unique this time of the year. They were selling wonderful smelling live pine trees,all kinds of tree decorations, lights, gift wraps, pinedasand religious ornaments. There were also food stalls selling guajolotes, tamales, cemitas, fresh fruit drinks and all kinds of candies (Pueblans love their candies). Quite a neat little spot and we thinkit's there only this time of the year.
I think Purificadora can make a lovely addition to LL's collection in Mexico.
Thank you for this great feedback! My husband & I are booked in to this same course inSeptember and I could find very little information from people who have actually done this course.
We are traveling from Australia and doing this as part of our American holiday so It was vital that it wasgood. I am so gladyou gave such an in depth review. As we had only read about it from brochures and what we found on the web sites. I am also a vegetarian so was a little worried I also cannot handle a lot of chili although I have been building up my tolerance since booking this part of the HOLIDAY
Now I am really looking forward to this Mexican section and cannot wait.
Is this village within driving distance from the water or maybe an afternoon trip? It does look central in Mexico but not sure if Beaches are a long distance?