Photo by Julie Schwietert Collazo
Hands down the best place to stay in Mexico City’s Centro Histórico is the aptly named Downtown. Located inside a restored 17th-century casona (mansion), the hotel shares its property with a select group of Mexican businesses, including a chocolate boutique and a mezcal bar, as well as restaurants, cafes, and fashion and jewelry ateliers. Appropriately, rooms evoke a bygone era, with low lighting, brick ceilings, and tile floors somewhat reminiscent of a monastery. Amenities are spare but select (C.O. Bigelow toiletries, for starters), and service is unobtrusive but attentive. After a day spent exploring the city, head to the rooftop pool and bar, where you can sunbathe on a bright yellow chaise lounge or sit under an oversized umbrella while waiting for your cocktail to arrive.
Downtown Mexico Hotel, Mexico City
Just two blocks from the Zócalo, the new Downtown Mexico hotel is a former palace of 17 rooms, many with exposed brick walls and wood-beam ceilings. The hotel was developed as part of a courtyard-style complex of restaurants, galleries, and shops. The Downtown’s rooftop bar is the best place around for cocktails. Order the Pibirita if you like mezcal and passion fruit.
By Tanvi Chheda, AFAR Contributor
Mexico City's Downtown Hotel
A 17th-century palace is now a 17-room hotel. Some rooms have walls made of volcanic rock, and the rooftop terrace offers panoramic views of Mexico City’s historic quarter.
By Jen Murphy, AFAR Contributor
Local and Historic in Centro Histórico's Downtown
Grupo Habita, the hoteliers behind the ultra-modern Hotel Habita and Distrito Capital, among others, took an entirely different approach to style and design in their latest property, the aptly-named Downtown, a hotel-restaurant-retail complex in Mexico City's Centro Histórico. The hoteliers turned a 17th-century palace that retains all of its historic character into a 17-room hotel with high ceilings and spare decorative elements. One of the best aspects of this hotel is the fact that it's surrounded by restaurants and boutiques that are all Mexican in origin. The delicious and popular Azul Histórico is on-site, as is a mezcal bar, the chocolate boutique Que Bo!, an art supply store, and a handful of clothing and accessory shops. If the hotel itself is out of your budget, note that there's also a hostel (by the same name) on-site. Clean, spare rooms are a fraction of the price, and guests have access to the bar, pool, and other facilities.
Rooftop Bar with Sophisticated Vibe
If you're in the city with your partner and you're looking for a classy spot to share a nightcap, the rooftop bar of Downtown, a hotel in a historic building in the Centro Histórico, is an excellent option. The bar with its urban sophisticate vibe attracts hotel guests and locals alike, many looking to cozy up on intimate loungers or to gaze out over the Centro Histórico, drink in hand.
Downtown Beds in D.F.: Super-affordable place to sleep in central Mexico City
This has to be one of the best deals in the city: For under US$20, you can grab a bed in this chic new Grupo Habita property (which also has 17 small private rooms for ten times that price). Located inside the renovated mansion of La Condesa de Mirabelle, a well-to-do 17th-century countess and only a few blocks walk from the Zocalo and many other central sites, Downtown Beds allows dorm guests to use many of the facilities, including the rooftop pool, hot tub, and bar (pictured above), and two remarkable restaurants and an upscale mini-mall. The building itself is quite remarkable and the dorm beds are in the old servants quarters.
By Joshua Berman, AFAR Local Expert
Enjoying the Zocalo at a Rooftop Bar
The energy of the Zocalo at night is enticing. A great way to check it out while staying above the fray is by visiting the rooftop bar of DOWNTOWN, a hotel with a great outdoor restaurant in its courtyard very close to the cobbled pedestrian streets. Just make your way up the stairs at the back of the courtyard, or ask how to find the bar. The tequila and mescal drinks are delicious and during a warm March evening, the mood lighting romantic.
Calle Isabel la Catolica 30, Centro Histórico, Centro, 06000 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico