San Miguel de Allende
April 2008

San Miguel was blooming when we arrived; with purple flowered jacaranda trees above and fuchsia, orange and red bougainvillea below it was a floral tapestry. View of a residential section from our condo below:

view from Laz Terrazas

San Miguel de Allende, a Spanish Colonial city in central Mexico, is getting well known as a destination for tourism and laid back living.  Not only do we have several friends who have been there, but we know some people who have moved there.  SMA resident Jennifer Butz suggested we stay at Las Terrazas B&B  We like to stay at B&Bs when we travel, but staying at Las Terrazas was a different experience. First the hosts, Murray and Greg, went out of their way not only to make us feel at home but to solve our travel problems. The first few nights we planned to be in SMA a casita at Las Terrazas was not available, so they arranged to have us stay in a condo nearby.  When our flight was delayed they rearranged transportation and were there to greet us when we arrives at 2:00 am.  On top of all this they stocked the condo for breakfast so we would not awake hungry in a strange city.  Second, the B&B experience at Las Terrazas is based on privacy and not community. There is no common dining room and instead breakfast is delivered as ordered to each casita the night before. Breakfast in bed your fancy? It is certainly possible.

view from Laz Terrazas

The view from Las Terrazas, looking away from downtown.  The buildings in the foreground are the condo complex where we stayed a few nights.  Our condo was the first floor unit on the far right.

La Parroquia

The Gothic church La Parroquia is the major landmark in Centro.


La Parroquia sits at one side of the Jardin, or central garden.

  Santa Domingo Bells - Murray Friedman

Santa Domingo Bells, photo by Murray Friedman

Murray Friedman

An "artsy" shot by Murray along Correo, the street between our condo and the jardin.

Jennifer and Pat

Our friend Jennifer Butz, who runs the Bagel Cafe, chats with Pat.

A recommended activity is the house and garden tour leaving from the Biblioteca at noon every Sunday. This was our first glimpse of the posh life that is possible in SMA. Tropical Spanish houses show little from the street with all the beauty in and around central courtyards. The three houses we saw were outstanding but none out shown Las Terrazas.   Scenes from the tour below.



laundry art

The home tour took us past, the hot spring SMA was founded around.  It is still used for laundry (see the tubs) and a frequent site for art shows.


Lunch at La Puertecita Hotel.

Every week or so Greg and Murray hold a sunset cocktail party which gives you a chance to socialize with the hosts and the other guests and to see the owner's casita. Las Terrazas consists of 4 independent casitas is built on a hillside (hence Las Terrazas) with Casa Grillo (cricket) at street level and the owners Casa Aguila (eagle) at the top. The view from there is spectacular, and our view from Casita Colibri just below was almost as good. Of course Murray and Greg were consummate hosts to a great party.

Casa Aquila

The owners apartment, Casa Aquila, is at the upper-most level of Las Terrazas.

Greg Johnson Murray Freidman

      Greg attracted the pretty ladies.                                                         Murray listens to another guest.     

casa colibri

Our living room

casa colibri

Our terrace.

Another must see is Fabrica la Aurora, a former textile factory converted to artists studios and shops. Thursday afternoons are the best time because all the artists open their studios then. Murray's paintings can be seen there.

Fabricia la Aurora

The entry courtyard at La Fabrica


The rooms of the old factory were often discolored and this artist decided not to have hers painted. 

Murray Freidman

Some of Murray's paintings at Fabrica la Aurora.

our Merry Calderoni painting

Our decorator said we need "large art" for our living room so we bought this painting, Fragmentos Ancestrales III, by Merry Calderoni. Ms. Calderoni's work is influenced by the walls of Mexican cities and especially the Aztec and Mayan ruins.  Her art incorporates paint, wax, stamps and molds to produce the desired design, color , texture and bas relief.  Our painting was part of a one artist exhibit "Mexcavations" at the Museo de Bellas Artes. It is approx. 5 ft by 8 ft. 


Scenes from La Fabrica


Fountains, everywhere.


Instituto Allende, founded after WWII as a Spanish language and art school for GIs.


La parroquia

Another view of La Parroquia, this time from the restaurant Mi Casa on the Instituto lower patio.   The Instituto is so quiet at night that few venture through the courtyard to find the steps down to the lower patio. 

We loved San Miguel and plan to return next winter, probably renting a larger casita and bringing friends. I cannot imagine a better place.