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Archive for August, 2007

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This post has been updated and new information has been added about Hotel Limón, so I thought I’d recycle it. — MarieMcC

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Several members of the Visit Xalapa Yahoo Group are currently making plans to travel in the area, and some have asked about where to stay.

Two of our members have already stayed at the Posada del Cafeto and have given us their opinions on this hotel.

Laura highly recommends the Posada del Cafeto. She took the photos posted here. Laura said: “They have a wonderful breakfast cafe and breakfast is included with room rental, plus they are located right downtown, but on a quieter side street. They also have wireless high speed internet access in the cafe which extends to some of the rooms as well.”

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Another member stayed at the Posada del Cafeto in January 2007 and found it quite satisfactory for the price. His only complaint was that the room lacked any kind of heater, so he had to take hot showers to keep warm. On that score he was very satisfied — lots of hot water and lots of pressure. According to Rich, “the breakfast was ok.” Best of all was the location: it was near to everything.

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All photos by Laura Garcia

Posada del Cafeto

Canovas 8 and 12
Tel: (228) 8170023
Mastercard and Visa are accepted.
Posada del Cafeto Website (Spanish only)
29 rooms

OTHER HOTELS IN XALAPA

A list of hotels in the Xalapa area, organized by price, can be found on JonW’s MSN page. There are many other hotels in Xalapa not on the list. Keep in mind for hotels in Mexico, particularly budget hotels, having a website is not yet widespread practice. There is another list of hotels in Xalapa here, and you will notice there are no web pages listed for any of them.

Here are a few hotels recommended by some of our Yahoo Group members:

Everyone recommends the pretty Mariquinta (Posada de la Mariquinta), a guest house in an 18th century building with rooms, suites, and bungalows around a lovely garden, three long blocks up from the main drag, Zamora (which becomes Enriquez as you head west toward the cathedral and Parque Juarez (the city’s zocalo). It will run about $45 a night for a double, perhaps a bit more (Mexico’s inflation has a way of making tour guide books obsolete prior to their distribution) .

I know it is the trendiest place in the centro, but I much prefer the more inexpensive (though still nice) rooms at the Hotel Principal, much more centrally located only a block south of the main drag, on Zaragoza at Primera Verdad, about $35. Either place, you should be comfortable, with clean bath, good beds, cable TV, and so forth. Have a nice trip! — Jim Martin

Posada de la Mariquinta
Alfaro No. 12
Centro Historico
91000 Xalapa, Veracruz
Tel: (228) 818-1158
Credit cards not accepted
www.lamariquinta.xalapa.net

Hotel Principal
Zaragoza No. 28, corner of Nicolas Bravo
Tel. (228) 8176400 y (228) 8176401
39 rooms
Note: Rooms on the Nicolas Bravo side can get very noisy early in the morning. — Kurt

Hotel Limón is on Revolucion a few steps from Enriquez just behind the catedral. They have a very nice patio in the center of the hotel. It was approximately ten US dollars a night [in 2006]. I needed to have some clothes laundered. I went out searching and paid too much at an independent laundry shop. The next time, I realized since the Hotel maids wash the bed linens, they could also do laundry for the Hotel occupants although they don’t advertise this, and I did not go through the front desk. For regular laundry, just ask the maids at the Hotel for a price. Very inexpensive, they did a great job, they were glad to do it, and same day service in my case. — Kurt

Hotel Limón
Revolucion No. 8
Centro
Tel. (228) 8172204
Fax 8179316
Cambio moneda-estacionamiento-fax-lavanderia-telefono-t.v.

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Xalapa Restaurants

If you Google “Xalapa restaurants” as I did recently, you won’t find much solid information in either English or Spanish. Even Frommers.com lists only two restaurants in their online Xalapa guide. Only two, in a city of about 400,000!

Our group has had several discussions on eating out in Xalapa, but the Yahoo Group messages apparently aren’t crawled by search engines. The opportunity to become a primary information source for visitors was too good to pass up, so I went back through the group messages and pulled together everything I could find.

Below is a collection of reviews and recommendations of Xalapa restaurants offered by our members.

JIM MARTIN’S FAVE FOUR

1. La Sopa, in the Callejon Diamante. A laid-back student-artist hangout with some of the best antojitos I’ve ever had (rivaling the old El Farol in downtown Guadalajara). It sometimes has musicians (solo guitarists for example) and is almost always packed both because the food is good and because your wallet won’t be depleted.

2. Cafe Lindo, on Primo Verdad across from the hospital. I had a wonderful comida with pollo frito a la Aguascalientes for the entree (four bucks!).

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View from the balcony at La Fonda
photo by Laura Garcia

3. La Fonda, Callejon Diamante at Enriquez, which Let’s Go correctly says has “simply the best food around.” Try for a balcony table upstairs. Within an easy (at most, five-minute) walk from the Cathedral and/or Parque Juarez, i.e. the heart of the centro historico. La Fonda is on the corner of Enriquez, the main street that runs in front of the park (on the south side of the street) and the restaurant (on the north side). It is on the corner of Enriquez and the entrance to Callejon Diamante. You simply can’t miss it. Amazingly, prices there — for the value of the food — are much lower than they would be in any city of comparable size anywhere in the world, given the location!

4. Casona del Beaterio, a couple of blocks off the main drag. An old colonial home converted into a splendid dining experience with big breakfasts and nothing on the menu higher than about $10. To get to the Casona del Beaterio from the corner of Callejon Diamante and Enriquez, head one long block east on Enriquez, cross the street and go south down Primera Verdad about three shorter blocks until you get to Zaragoza. Then turn right and walk one block to the next intersection. It’s catercorner.

The coffee shops along Primero Verdad are also delightful for a late morning or post-siesta cup of altura, good places to read or people watch, especially if you like ogling college students in animated conversations. — Jim M.

VEGETARIAN RESTAURANTS
recommended by Bret Cohen

Xalapa is loaded with good restaurants, including about six vegetarian restaurants. Here are three delicious veggie restaurants:

El Champignon
Xallitic No.20
Xalapa
(right under the old Xallitic bridge, next to the community washing wells)

Manantial de los Flores
Ursulo Galván 102
Xalapa
Veracruz, México
Teléfono: (28) 12 45 57
(on the street leading away from Parque Juarez toward where you get the buses to Coatepeque & Xico)

Madre Deus
Pino Suárez 13 Zona centro
Xalapa
Veracruz, México
Teléfono: 01 2288 817 33 15
(on a small street leading down from near Correos (Post Office))

RICH’S EVENING AT IL GIARDINO

I almost hesitate to recommend this restaurant out of fear that it might become a great success and then the owners will sell out at a hefty price and retire. Well for our sake I hope this doesn’t happen. On to the review.

Last night Il Giardino was not crowded, in fact one might say the place was virtually empty. However, it was early evening on a Thursday. Since I plan on returning on other days we’ll see how the crowd develops. One night is not enough to prove anything.

My dinner consisted of salad and pasta with a tasty tomato sauce, washed down by a nice Spanish red wine. My companion had ravioli with fish filling. The total, including four glasses of wine, came to about $35 US. Most of the pasta entrées were in the 6.50 to 8.00 range as I recall. I did not really study the entire menu, since I have found ordering pasta is a good guide to any new Italian restaurant. My pasta definitely passed the test, so I’ll
order other selections in the future with some assurance. I would say the menu offered a good range of standard fare for an Italian restaurant.

Service was excellent and portions ample. There is a large patio area and several small intimate dining areas for small parties. The atmosphere is very pleasant.

Parking may be a problem because you must park on the street. Other than that, I can see no negatives in dining at Il Giardino. — Rich

RECOMMENDATIONS BY JOHN

I like VIPS a lot, which is a kind of fusion food, but they also sell Mexican food (enchiladas, moletes, I might spell this wrong). It’s in the center.

As for a “corner joint,” follow the Calle Hidalgo in the direction of the rail track. When you have passed Parque de los Berros, keep walking and if you see to your right a small car selling Tacos al Pastor, give them a try. 🙂 (There is an internet cafe nearby.)

Just after Parque de los Berros, there is also a small restaurant selling Japanese food.

I know 1001 more places to eat but have to ask my novia for names.

BTW, I live in el centro. — John Bokma

ROY DUDLEY’S TOP TEN

There are excellent restaurants in Xalapa. Here are some:

La Casona del Beaterio
El Postodoro
La Estancia de los Tecajetes
La Casa de Mama
El Salto de Xala
Pricrecha
Ghal
La Gavia
Asadero 100
Nico’s

— Roy Dudley

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Latin Music — YouTube Videos

I spend a great deal of time in my car but am fortunate to have a six disk CD player and can listen to wonderful music during my long commutes. While I do not pretend to have a handle on Latin music, I really enjoy some of the smooth vocal music of Laura Flores and Yuri. Perhaps I am dated in the Latin music world, but no matter, my commute time goes much more quickly and pleasantly when they are with me in the car.

Here is a sample of Laura Flores in a duet with Triny.  ( video by mockingbird1313)

I don’t know who Triny is, but I think he is very good in the duet and will try to find more of his work.

I thought it might be nice to have a music page featuring some of the artists we all enjoy, so I have added a new page with several artists on it and will try to add more. You can find the new page by clicking on the Music tab at the top of the page or by clicking on —

https://visitxalapa.wordpress.com/music/

If you have some favorite artists and can find “YouTube” type of links, please send them to me at —

Silversard@Xalapa.net

OR

Silversard@Genuine-Tourist.com

Some of the authors of the videos do not permit them to be embedded on a page in the manner of the sample I have placed above. Nevertheless, one is usually allowed to post a link to the video and still be able play it; so please send me a few to add to the new page and thanks in advance. 😉

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More Reasons to Visit Xalapa

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Callejon Diamante, by Laura Garcia

Just found a real gem of an article about Xalapa on one of my frequent internet trawls: Among the Jalapeños, from the Huevos Rancheros blog. A traveler discovers the beauty and vibrant cultural heart of Xalapa and reports in delicious detail the sights, sounds, and culinary treats that he experienced.

Reading this, along with Roy Dudley’s Xalapa de Mis Sueños, is bound to get you excited about visiting the City of Flowers.

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