Ole! In Mexico City, Historic Palace Converted Into Modern, Chic Hotel
September 5, 2012
Earlier this year, I had the good fortune to visit Hotel Endemico—a gorgeous new resort in Baja’s Valle de Guadalupe wine region. Designed by Tijuana architect Jorge Gracia and operated by the hotelier Grupo Habita, the complex features a series of modernist cubes perched on a hillside overlooking a breathtaking sweep of vineyards. I wrote about the project for Architectural Record’s June issue.
Grupo Habita—known for gush-worthy properties such as Hotel Americano in NYC (by Enrique Norten) and Hotel La Purificadora in Puebla, Mexico (by Legorreta+Legorreta)—has recently opened another resort. This one, DOWNTOWN, is situated in the historic heart of Mexico City… and we have photos! Read on.
Designed by Cherem Serrano Arquitectos, with interior design by Paul Roco, the project involved the adaptive reuse of a grand 17th-century palace. Many of the building’s original features were preserved, giving the luxe hotel a rustic feel. Rafael Micha, the exuberant and stylish co-owner of Grupo Habita, told me that his company aims to create hotels that are in sync with their milieu. “The goal has always been to become part of the original energy of a neighborhood,” he says. Grupo Habita now offers 13 properties.
DOWNTOWN contains 17 guest rooms, along with a spacious rooftop terrace with a pool. Pops of color, from banana-colored umbrellas to cherry red sofas, lend warmth and vibrance to the sleek space. Beyond the hotel, cobblestone streets and colonial architecture will enchant novice and seasoned travelers alike (Mexico City’s central quarter is a UNESCO World Heritage site, after all).
The hotel opened in June. Here’s hoping I can return to Mexico in the near future!
Photos courtesy Grupo Habita/most by photographer Undine Pröhl