Calle Mesones 3, Centro, San Miguel de Allende, GTO, Mexico
This award-winning five-room boutique hotel in a prime area in the historic district was once a city mansion. It is built around a lovely courtyard that can be enjoyed all year.
Hotel Amparo burst onto the scene with a splash in 2019, immediately earning "it list" and "hot list" mentions in the major glossy magazines. While there's no shortage of small hotels housed in colonial era historic mansions in San Miguel de Allende, Hotel Amparo displays a higher level of room décor, sophistication, and service than most.
The property is flush to the sidewalk up a slight hill on Mesones, near one of the major churches, and the artisans' market. It's only five or tens minutes of strolling to get to the heart of Centro and the main plaza. If you pull up in a rental car, you can hand the keys to one of the employees and they'll valet park it at no charge in a secure lot nearby.
The modest entrance leads to a long sunny courtyard, with public spaces and some of the rooms on each side. Immediately to the left is the Bar Margaret and coffee shop, which feels like a classic watering hole, but with carefully selected artwork and an equally curated selection of spirits. Several good wines by the glass are available and a coffee ordered here will be one of the best in town.
To the right is the reception area, where someone is always waiting to serve as front desk clerk, concierge, baggage handler, or room service conjurer as needed. Staffers wear multiple hats in such a small property but they wear them all well and are bilingual. They can talk to you about French wines, recommend local restaurants, bring your welcome drink, or prepare a great espresso.
Unless it's raining, which is not very common in this eternal spring climate in the high desert, you enjoy coffee and breakfast (for an additional charge) in the open-air courtyard. With a gurgling fountain and cascading flower bushes, it's a peaceful spot for reflection and conversation. There's also a lunch and dinner menu if you want to stay in at any point, or you can bring take-out and eat it at one of the tables.
A small and colorful wine salon can host private tastings and events. During my stay, the owners were in the early stages of opening up a wine shop in the city because they've established a pipeline to order wines in large quantities from Europe. There's also a roof deck above, mostly used as a lounge area and a spot for private dinners or meetings. While it doesn't have the kind of panoramic view some other spots in town do, it's still a pleasant place to relax and enjoy the outdoors.
There are no TVs in the rooms, but there is one large one in the shared living room for catching a movie or sporting event, This is an inviting space with a variety of furniture and fine art, a gas fireplace on one side.
The five rooms here vary in location and layout. One is on the upper level, two share a small garden behind the public living room, and two open onto the main patio. The ones on the main level have high beamed ceilings of at least 16 feet that make them feel extra spacious. All are decorated with unique furniture, carpets, unique tiles, and custom artwork. They have an abundance of style and personality, with lots of little touches that show a strong attention to detail. All are well-stocked with amenities to make your stay comfortable, such as robes, filtered water, a minibar, gas fireplace, and high-end toiletries.
The largest room is the Amparo Suite, which has a portrait of former president Porfirio Diaz to make it feel extra presidential. It contains a bathroom with a shower and soaking tub that by itself is larger than some hotel rooms. Then the expansive bedroom has a desk and sitting area with several chairs and a divan. The decorating style is eclectic, with a mix of antiques and modern art, but it manages to work together and the bed with colorful spreads and pillows is about as comfortable as you could ever hope.
While this small boutique hotel is limited in the number of facilities that make sense for a maximum of 10 guests, it offers what you need to have a pleasant stay in San Miguel de Allende. With more than 50 restaurants and bars to try within a 20-minute walk, there are plenty of options to explore without ever getting into a car or taxi. In a city filled with enchanting places to stay, Hotel Amparo holds its own with gorgeous décor and a welcoming staff.
Web Address: HotelAmparo.com
Total Number of Rooms: 5
Published rates: $320 to $750 double plus 28% taxes and fees
Review and photos by Timothy Scott.