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“intimate, beautiful, unique”

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Hotel Casa del Balam
Ranked #15 of 103 Hotels in Merida
Certificate of Excellence
Tulsa
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“intimate, beautiful, unique”
Reviewed 30 August 2009

Gorgeous hotel in a very old building in downtown (Centro) Merida. Location is grand, as sidewalk cafes and the central plaza are just a short walk away. Merida is a stunning city, with activities into the wee hours, and superb architecture and a lush colonial feel. There was music in the streets, at the cultural center next door to the hotel, and a band playing on a nearby roof.

The hotel was exceptional. Lovely decor, stunning central courtyard, very nice pool area. Free breakfast, attentive staff, overall a fabulous, wonderful, can't-wait-to-repeat experience.

Stay away if you don't like a rich, varied city life. If you're happy at a Holiday Inn, don't bother. If you love unique, historically rich, beautiful small hotels, this is your ticket.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank LoveMexico4Life
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (75)
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  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
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  • French first
  • German first
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English first
Dublin, Ireland
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 August 2009

We booked this hotel by phone as we were travelling to Mérida. The rate that they quoted us (US$85 per night) was lower, as we discovered later, than what they were quoting people who just happened to show up while we were checking in (although they might have just run out of cheaper options).

We got a room with two queen beds and a cot on the top floor - which is good, because the road can be quite noisy. Parking around the corner was trouble-free and included in the price. The air conditioning was excellent and strong, and the room was very clean although I thought I had a bit of a musty smell (but nobody else in my family noticed it). The bathroom was also well appointed, with bath and all.

In the heat of Mérida in the summer, a swimming pool is important (it's why we had chosen to stay there) and it's the first place we went to. We were pleasantly surprised to find out it's also beautiful - in a small garden, surrounded by trees and bougainvilleas - as well as clean and of a sufficient size, not a paddling pool, although more for refreshing than for vigorous swimming. Beach towels are provided and they bring it to you at the pool.

The double window kept the noise of the street away during the night.

At breakfast, we were pleasantly surprised: the "continental" breakfast included with the room price was *not* a sad affair of limp bread and stale butter, but a very good one with fresh local fruit in season, good bread and pastries, fresh juice, and decent coffee. Other tables were having proper Mexican breakfasts and they looked happy.

The experience of this fine hotel was made even better by thoroughly friendly service.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Diegodelizia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South Yorkshire
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 August 2009

My boyfriend and I stayed at the hotel for three nights (as a treat) whilst travelling around Mexico.
There are no safety deposit boxes in the rooms; we were therefore careful to ensure that all of our valuables were 'hidden' at the bottom of our bags. This however, did not prevent our mobile phone and what was left of our Mexican currency (around £150) been taken from our room, whilst we were on a day trip.
We can only assume that these items were stolen by someone who had access to the room, as there was no damage to the door etc.
When advising the hotel management of the incident they were totally unhelpful. When discussing the incident they suddenly couldn't understand our english or spanish- which they managed to understand perfectly before the incident. Since leaving the hotel; we have tried on numerous occassions to call the hotel and speak to the manager, who apparently is never at the hotel!
The hotel itself is ok, but there are plenty of nicer hotels in the area for less money!

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank vicky055
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Innisfil, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
245 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 115 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 July 2009

We stayed here during a tour with Caravan Tours. Merida is a lovely city but some of it's htels are shabby and are under renovation, ie the Mision hotel oposite the Case. Casa del Balam was once a private residence and it shows. Lovely terraces overlook the central indoor courtyard full of live trees and a lovely fountain. The views outside aren't much, inner city street or rooftops but the small poolside garden makes up for it. Service is exceptional and we did not get treated like tour people.

Turn left outside of the hotel, turn right at the street with the small church and go into the green bulding with souvenirs. Upstairs is a high end shop full of masks, jewellry and statues. Expensive but worth the visit..it looks like a museum.

  • Stayed July 2009
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
Thank OntarioTrekker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North Queensland
Level 6 Contributor
51 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 May 2009

My husband and I stayed here recently and absolutely loved the hotel, room great, staff service was above and beyond what was expected of them, my husband had lost an adapter for his shaver in Mexico CIty and for 2 weeks we had hunted for a replacement, the bell boy at the hotel went to stores and found one in 30 minutes and it cost next to nothing. Breakfast was very pleasant, and we had lunch and dinner at the hotel and all meals were excellent. If I have any complaints it was the lack of internet access that we found in all other hotels, we could use the laptop that was on the reception desk and that was all, we found an internet cafe just 5 minutes away so that problem was solved. On our last day there the heavens opened up and we had a tropical storm that flooded the whole of the ground floor, even then the staff did all the mopping and cleaning up with a smile on their faces and with humour. Out of 10.00 I would score 8.50

  • Stayed February 2009, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank MarleneRay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
asheville, north carolina
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 May 2009

Spent 4 wonderful days at Balam. Great location, clean, cool rooms, wonderful courtyard to have breakfast in. Small but lovely pool. Enjoyed the charm and elegance of the city and the hotel very much.

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank bpug1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, UK
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 April 2009

The hotel itself is very nice, large rooms, and big breakfasts. It is a beautiful builiding, nicely decorated. However, it was a bit noisy the time we were there. We had to switch off the fridge in our room at night , & the sound of air conditioning units coming on from either above or below our room was quite loud. Worst of all when we were there, was workman digging up the pavement with a JCB in the street below our bedroom. They started at 11.30pm & continued until the early hours! I reaise that the hotel can do nothing about it, but I was woken up by it every night!

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank ItchyfeetOxford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Casa del Balam

Property: Hotel Casa del Balam
Address: Calle 60 # 488 x 57 | Colonia Centro, Merida 97000, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Yucatan > Merida
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#18 Family Hotel in Merida
#20 Romantic Hotel in Merida
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Casa del Balam 3*
Number of rooms: 51
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Casa del Balam is one of the oldest and most distinguished hotels in Merida and the Yucatan Peninsula, it's also one of the few original Mexican Art Deco houses left in the city. The hotel was built in 1970 incorporating facets of the original home of Fernando Barbachano Peon, pioneer of Tourism in Mexico. His daughter, Ms. Carmen Barbachano Gomez Rul (who was also involved on the family business), left the original facade and selected the name of "Casa del Balam" (Mayan words for "house of the jaguar") to honor his father nickname "balam" due to his visionary sharp business mind. Ms. Barbachano was very devoted of the colonial period and decorated the house accordingly. Big wooden furniture, rocking chairs and wrought iron accessories were part of her fine selection. She had envisioned a place where every touch could softly spoke of the serene ambiance of the city, and where friends could be made instead of just mere clients. When looking at the amazing interior of this Casona and experiencing the warm specialized service of its personnel, one can easily understand that Ms. Barbachano did accomplish her desire of uniqueness, and in a very exquisite way! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Casa Del Balam Merida
Casa Balam

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