Casa Del Caracol- House of the Spiral
The spiral holds great meaning in Mayan culture. Start your Mayan experience from our Casa del Caracol; so named to honour this Mayan symbol and recognize the spiral-inspirations that have been included in our home.
From the unique two-dimensional wrought iron spiral window inset to the whimsical wheel hub coffee table and local artwork, we hope that you will feel as comfortable and relaxed as we do in Mérida.
Our home is ideally located in Centro, one block away from Plaza de Santiago where you can join locals and tourists alike dancing under the stars to live big-band music every Tuesday evening.
We are a short walk from Plaza Grande – the Sunday market and family hotspot - and a slightly longer walk from the Paseo Montejo, where you can view the spectacular architecture of the henequen mansions and visit the Museum of Anthropology. The house is also an easy walk to and from the zoo and in close proximity to health care facilities and local markets.
The house was completely renovated in the spring of 2011 and, unlike many houses in Centro whose doors exit directly onto a busy street, our house offers the safety of a covered front porch accessed by its own iron gate leading from the generous sidewalk. The original pasta tiles greet you when you enter the living room and continue to be featured in the dining room and master bedroom. The mahogany furniture has been custom made by the talented craftsmen of Yucatan Furniture. Air conditioning is installed throughout the house and separate casita and there are ceiling fans in all rooms.
Our favourite place is the cheerful kitchen; designed to allow interaction between the chef and any guests via a pass-through window and polished cement bar that looks out into the dining room. The bar is flanked on either side by two bar chairs. The kitchen is well appointed with a four burner stove and oven, microwave, toaster, blender, coffee maker and full-sized refrigerator. A complete set of Wolfgang Puck pots is included with all the necessary utensils, cutlery, glasses and crockery to cater for six people. Kitchen counter tops and open shelving are all of polished cement, as is the kitchen floor.
Tucked behind the kitchen is the office nook which also features a polished cement work surface and shelving. The nook is connected to the kitchen by the wrought iron 'caracol grande', facilitating light and air flow. Additional local artwork echoes the caracol theme.
The sunflower-accented main bathroom is appointed with a wrought iron vanity and hardware; and there is a glass block and polished cement shower wall with a niche for toiletries.
Cuban artwork brightens the master bedroom wall and the polished cement built-in shelving provides ample and tasteful storage space in addition to the hanging closet. Customized wrought iron folding doors open onto the deliciously private patio where you will find our refreshing plunge pool, two terracota tiled awnings and a breakfast corner with outdoor ceiling fan. If you are in luck you will find a daily offering donated by the overhanging sour orange tree. At times there is a visiting humming bird, or colibri, busily collecting nectar from the papaya blooms peeking through the decorator blocks that cap our wall.
Most exhilerating is the double water feature of the plunge pool. Decide whether you prefer to sit on the submerged wrap-around pool bench or dunk your entire body under the unique water fall. How heavenly it is as you sit sipping a freshly-frothed margarita made moments ago!
Out back, discover the guest casita which has its own large bathroom and two sturdy single beds that can be pushed together to make a king sized sleeping arrangement. Polished cement shelving is repeated in the casita and in the bathroom.The patio and casita can be accessed from the main house by a separate hallway door or from the master bedroom.
Although small, there is a utility room that houses a washing machine, new gas hotwater heater and utility sink. We use mother nature to dry our clothes on the retractable line, but if you need the services, there is a lavandaria conveniently located less than half a block away.
Our Neighbourhood: Santiago park is only one block away. There you will find:
AKI grocery store
OXXO convenience store (get phone top ups here)
Movie Theatre - recent releases shown
Beer/water - turn right out the front door and there at the end of the block is the beer and water tienda.
Taxi Stand – located on the south side of the park, across the street from the OXXO.
Bank - HSBC is the nearlest bank. Walk along 59th street heading east towards Gran Plaza. The HSBC with an ATM machine is on the right side of 59th street. About a 4 min walk from our front door.
Plaza Grande - on 60th and 61st. A Sunday must. There you'll also find the beautiful Mérida Cathedral.
WalMart on Paseo Montejo. Taxi ride home from Walmart is about 40pesos. Walk to the paseo and take in the fabulous architecture of the henequen mansions (make sure you stop at el Colon for the best ice-cream around.)
AKI on Calle 59 y 82, left hand side, is a much larger supermarket than the AKI on Santiago square.
Merida Zoo - continue walking west along 59 past the big AKI store about four blocks, then left on Ave Itzáez. See the white tigers and baby hippo.
Panadaria - take a walk to corner of C.72 and 61. Friendly service and yummy goodies!
Merida English Library - C.53 between 66 y 68. Popular meeting place for English speaking expats.