Destinations | Mexico

Mexico: the fabulous world of the Yucatan haciendas (Temozon & San Pedro Ochil)

20 August 2017

 

– Day 3 – 

(The afternoon story)

 

Diving into the world of the Yucatan haciendas

 

At that point (that is, on Day 3 of our week in Mexico), we had already visited two colonial cities, two museums and the beautiful Mayan ruins of Uxmal. For an overview of our entire journey and itinerary, click here.

After visiting Uxmal and the eco-museum Choco-story in the morning, we decided to explore the colonial past of Mexico in the afternoon. And a great way to do that, in this remote part of Yucatan, was to see some haciendas (estates that used to be plantations or factories).

The program for the afternoon was the following: lunch at Hacienda San Pedro Ochil before chilling out at our second hotel of the trip: the sublime Hacienda Temozon.

 

The very photogenic Hacienda San Pedro Ochil 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
Eating at Hacienda San Pedro Ochil 

 

I’ll be really honest here: we had some doubt as to the quality of the food we would be served in this very touristic spot. We came to see the hacienda and had low expectations regarding the food. However, I must say that we were positively surprised. The “all you can eat” buffet (a bit pricey for the area) is rather good and offers many options. A good place to go have lunch.

 

Mosaic found on site

 

Two wonderful nights at Hacienda Temozon

 

Our arrival and check-in

 

A few miles from San Pedro Ochil on the main road to Merida, we made a right and drove on smaller roads (speed bumps alert!) for about ten minutes to reach our hotel. After crossing several villages, we found ourselves in front of this …

 

 

 

Not bad, uh? 

The valet took our car to park it and we walked to the reception. The heat was unbearable but the staff immediately met us with some refreshing towels and a very cold iced tea. It started well!

The hotel belongs to the Starwood “Luxury Collection Hotel” label. As members of the Starwood Preferred Guest program, we were told that we would be upgraded to a “more comfortable suite”. Things kept getting better and better!

 
 

 

 

 
The hotel

 

The hotel has a lot of character and its own identity, which we loved.  We felt immersed into the atmosphere of colonial Mexico, which is what we had been looking for. When the hacienda was turned into a hotel, it was clearly done with a lot of taste and respect for its history and soul. 

Minor complaint: Because of the heavy heat, the pool was full of dead insects, which was quite unpleasant. But how fun are the bar stools directly in the pool, right? One agua de jamaica, por favor! 

 

 

 

 

View from the restaurant

 

Our suite
 

My pictures do not do justice to this beautiful and gigantic suite. They do not show well the very high ceilings, the living room with the couch, the hamac hanging in the middle of the room, the huge bathroom etc…  The room is decorated with a lot of taste and we really liked it. Felt very special. 

 

 

 

We also had our own little garden with a private pool, which could be filled with cold or warm water on demand. We chose not to try it as an eco-friendly gesture and because Mexico, in particular, struggles with the lack of water. 

 
The massage
 

After settling in and taking a dip in the pool, we found ourselves in need of something to do. Since there is not much to do around the hotel, we decided to treat ourselves to a massage. On the hotel website, I had seen that you can get a massage in a cenote on the property, with candles and the whole decorum. However, the place was so humid that it was infested with mosquitos. Plan B: we had our couple massage in the spa. 

The massage itself was exceptional (we both thought so). I get a lot of massages but not once did I feel so relaxed. Chéri even fell asleep, which is odd because the massage was very strong. The mix of “deep tissue” and “mayan ritual” was out of this world. My massage therapist was a Mayan lady who had learned her art from her grandmother, a Mayan healer. I don’t know what she did to me but wow! It’s not cheap but totally worth it. 

 

The food
 

We ate well but nothing exceptional, except perhaps the guacamole which was delicious. I also became a fan of  the iced “agua de jamaica” they serve. It is actually a type of hibiscus iced tea. Loved it!

 

 
 
Verdict

 

Great and comfortable room in a landmark hotel. We were very fortunate to stay at Temozon, a place with such an interesting history so beautifully turned into a luxury hotel. 

One small thing I was quite upset about: they charge around 25$ to visit their own cenote. It’s ridiculously high compared to the entrance fee you pay for other more beautiful cenotes. Besides, given the price of the rooms, they should let hotel guests access it for free. As a result, we did not go and chose to stop at San Lorenzo Oxman on our way to Playa del Carmen instead. 

 

On the map

– Day 3 –

 

 

 

Verdict

– Day 3 (Afternoon) –

 

Should you plan to see an hacienda or two during your trip to Mexico? Yes, for sure! The main reason is an obvious one. They are absolutely beautiful! The combination of warm and ochre colors, old machines and rails, lush vegetation, lights and shadows makes it an esthetic experience. I must have taken over 200 pictures. Yup, I totally got carried away by the excitement. Visiting haciendas also allows you to dive into the particular atmosphere of colonial Mexico in the countryside. The bottomline is that we did not regret putting haciendas on our must-see list.

 

Staying at Hacienda Temozon

 

We definitely recommend a short stay at Temozon (in light of all the above). It’s a fantastic place to stay. However, it’s far from everything so I would probably not recommend it for longer stays if you want to explore the peninsula. 

 

Lunch at Hacienda San Pedro Ochil

 

Yes, you should go! It’s true: the place is filled with tourists but after all, who cares? It’s beautiful, the buffet is more than decent and it’s a good place to stop between Merida and Uxmal.  

 

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Practical aspects

– Day 3 –

 

Time spent driving: About 2.5 hours (no tolls)

Sites visited:

 

Hotel: 

Hacienda Temozon, KM 182 Carretera Merida-Uxmal, Temozon Sur, Yucatan, 97825, Mexico 

 

Restaurants:

  • Lunch: Hacienda San Pedro Ochil
  • Drinks: Poolside – Hacienda Temozon
  • Dinner: Hacienda Temozon

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