DESTINATION UPDATE | MEXICO
trees are still being added
in circular planters, providing much-needed shade. The
whimsical sculptures along the
zone are reappearing but with
special lighting. And the artists
who create the beach’s amazing
sand sculptures will eventually
be back at work.
Intricate pebble designs in
the pavement catch the eye and
give the whole project an artistic flair. The patterns were created by artist Fidencio Benitez,
a member of the fascinating
Huichol group whose gorgeous
beaded artwork appears in galleries all over town. Benitez
drew mosaic patterns depicting
the native myth of creation and
workers meticulously followed
his sketches with pebbles and
volcanic stone. Swirling designs
appear along the walkway, representing Puerto Vallarta’s origins and devotion to the arts.
decorated rooms are filled with
embroidered pillows, elaborate
tin-framed mirrors and hand-
made furnishings from Mexi-
co’s folk-art masters. Touches
of the 1950s come through in
the baths — one has a com-
pletely restored mint-green
tiled tub. The church’s ornate
crown is in view from balco-
nies along the interior, where
bookshelves and comfy chairs
await guests. By adding a help-
ful, friendly staff, free Wi-Fi
access and kitchenettes, cof-
fee makers and more, De Leon
has created a good mid-range
downtown hotel for tourists
and business travelers.
PUER TO VALLAR TA; THINKS TOCK
Changes are happening all
around downtown and the
Zona Romantica. Pedestrian
sidewalks have been widened
along Basilio Badillo, one of
the best shopping and dining streets near the Malecon.
Planters with flowers and
trees have been added, and
storefront facades have been
improved. Sidewalks along
Calle Rodriguez leading to the
Flea Market’s jumble of stands
have been widened, and business owners are working with
cultural authorities to create
a picturesque corridor to the
market. Calle Rodriguez was
one of Puerto Vallarta’s most
important thoroughfares in
the 1950s, but had fallen into
disrepair in recent decades.
Entrepreneurs such as De
Leon have taken on the task of
making it special once again.
Desirable hotels have opened
in this area amid galleries and
Hotel Catedral, near the Flea
Market, was a mess when De
Leon took on the task of gutting
it and turning it into a delightful, affordable downtown hotel.
Today, its colorful guestrooms
face a central courtyard with
tables where guests mingle over
the complimentary continental
breakfast. The 21 individually
Hear a folksong befriend modern art. Nestled between the Sierra Madre and Banderas Bay lies a magical, peaceful place called Puerto Vallarta, where the spirit of the culture tells a story of high style and local tradition. It’s a dreamlike experience that will stay with you, as cherished keepsakes tend to. What stories will you bring back? Win a trip for two at:
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only and vary by resort and travel dates. Resort credits are not redeemable for cash. Availability is limited. Rates and/or package prices are subject to holiday blackouts, peak period surcharges, and cancellation charges may be applicable of up to the full price paid
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