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“a hidden paradise in the middle of the jungle” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant

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The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant
Ranked #1 of 2 Santa Elena B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Munich, Germany
Level Contributor
19 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“a hidden paradise in the middle of the jungle”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 March 2013

A little paradise somewhere in Mexico: beautiful garden, pool with nice service, hanging beds, tropical plants like papaya, banana, cocoo trees,colourful flowers, nice small labirinth for the soul, once again beautiful and romantic bungalows, special and personal design in all small details,matching perfectly in harmony. Nice staff and an incredible strong and great owner, dear Valerie!!!

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank zsuzsanna f
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
pickMerida, Owner at The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant, responded to this review, 26 March 2013
Thank you so much for taking the time to write this lovely revue.Your comments help small business like this to succeed and for this again i thank you.
I am so happy that you captured the essence of this place.With more improvements the aim is to make it better !
I hope you have many more happy travels along your way and with such a lovely couple as yourselves you would be welcomed anywhere
Valerie
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481 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (63)
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San Jose, California
Level Contributor
104 reviews
98 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 March 2013

My husband and I spent 3 nights at the Pickled Onion while visiting the Ruta Puuc area. This turned out to be one of my all-time favorite places that I have stayed - rustic luxury at its best. I absolutely loved it. Valerie has created a wonderful place on the edge of Santa Elena. The whole place has a terrific atmosphere - casual, relaxed, balanced. It is as though any stress or worry that you bring from the outside world is instantly disolved upon arrival. The staff are great - friendly and gracious - very helpful. And the location is perfect for visiting the area.

The restaurant is open-air and faces the road. It is set up on a small hill, so it is a bit removed from the traffic of the road (not a busy road by any means) and a nice place to watch the comings and goings in the area - it also catches a nice breeze in the evenings. Each night there were dinner guests from other lodging in the area as well as guests of the Pickled Onion - it was nice to talk with people and hear about their sightseeing. The food is wonderful with plenty of Yucatecan specialties and the prices were very reasonable.

The bungalows are set in a garden behind the restaurant, arranged around the pool as the central feature. They are placed so that no bungalow looks directly at another, which is nice - and with the trees and bushes in the garden, everything feels spacious and private even though the property is not large.

Our bungalow was very nice - they are all oval-shaped with thatched roofs in the traditional mayan style. We had plenty of room with a very comfortable bed and a seating area, plenty of space to put our suitcases. The bed was very comfortable and the linens were nice. We had a small fridge, which was a nice suprise - we didn't expect to have that type of amenity. Our bungalow was decorated very well and we even had a coffee table book about the mayan sites. The thatched roof allows for small lizards to come in, which I loved - we were visited by a couple little guys during our stay. They stayed up in the thatch and we could hear them rumaging around up there - they are small and do not bother anything. The thatch is tight enough that nothing larger can get in.

There is no A/C here, but we found that by leaving the windows open and using the fan, we had a nice comfortable temperature in our bungalow. The windows are such that you can leave them open all night without worry - fully screened so no mosquitos can come in and set high enough in the all that no one from outside can see much.

This is a rural area, so there are roosters up at the crack of dawn, goats that make noise, and so forth - just comes with the territory. Anybody looking to sleep in should bring ear plugs. I found the wake-up call to be very helpful because we wanted to be up early to do our sightseeing earlier in the day before it got too hot.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank november_moon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
pickMerida, Owner at The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant, responded to this review, 22 March 2013
Wow !! What wonderful comments! When I read it took my breath away you just felt all that I tried to capture . Thank you so much
Valerie
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Plainview, New York
Level Contributor
66 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 March 2013

My husband, some friends and I spent a night at the Pickled Onion when we went to visit the ruins at Uxmal. The "rooms" are thatched roof huts. Well decorated, comfortable with bottled water, frig, milk, coffee machine, The bathroom is behind a curved wall (no door) with a good shower. The room was great for two. The pool and property were clean and well kept. Bar service at the pool was very good. The only problem was the roosters. They are located on the property next door and like to crow pretty consistently, waking me up at 4 am and still crowing when I went to breakfast. If you can sleep through it or can use ear plugs the B&B was really a nice place. The rates were very good and included breakfast at the restaurant- reviewed separately.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mkb1234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
pickMerida, Owner at The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant, responded to this review, 16 March 2013
Thank you so much for your review
On the whole it seemed you liked the experience of being here. Living with nature sometimes takes getting used to especially if one is from the northern cities where its against the law to have livestock in the backyard.
Here it is a way of life ! For many it takes them back to their younger days and fonder memories.
If one is a light sleeper and not used to nature sounds I would recommend that one brings earplugs or instead of being irritated,immerse oneself in the wonderful natural surroundings and become one with all
I hope you continue your travels experiencing all that there is to offer
Valerie
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Merida, Mexico
Level Contributor
22 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 March 2013

Very good hosts, very friendly people.

The place is wonderful, an oasis in the Ruta Puuc. A lovely place to relax, swim in the pool, sleep and continue the journey.

The breakfast is supreme!!! The food is delicious, the place very clean.

Room Tip: There is one big room, the Wolis Nah, take that!
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Joselo527
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
pickMerida, Owner at The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant, responded to this review, 13 March 2013
Thank you so much for your review
Since you were here we have updated lots of things
New covers for the beds ,small bar fridges in the rooms, coffee maker , new bamboo furniture for the restaurant new bar and we continue adding to make it even more comfortable for the traveller
The gardens have grown amazingly and are quite lush now
So i hope you come back again to see how we are progressing and there will be a warm welcome waiting for you
take care
Valerie
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Racine, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 March 2013

We chose this B&B because of all the wonderful reviews and we were not dissappointed ! We have taken several driving trips thru the Quintana Roo and the Yucatan over the past few years and this was one of the best places we've ever stayed. We booked 2 nights and made short trips each day to the various ruins, the Cacao Museum and Tecul. It was conveniently located to everything we wanted to do in the area and was nice to take a break mid-day and refresh. Valerie, the owner, is so gracious and makes you feel welcome from the minute you arrive.
We enjoyed breakfast, lunch and dinner there ..... everything was well prepared and tasty. The cold tomato soup was wonderful and we ordered it several times.
The cabana's are very unique and situated far enough away from each other that we never heard anyone else. Listening to the birds and wildlife was a treat and made it feel peaceful. The rooms were well furnished, comfortable - extremely clean - and had all the amenities we needed including a mini fridge and coffee maker. Our cabana had a little patio with table and chairs which was nice to sit at in the early morning. There's obviously alot of thought and care that goes into keeping the property looking so nice.....we loved the paths and the variety of plantings, flowers and trees. I can't say enought about Valerie who was most willing to make our stay as pleasant as possible. She is very knowledgable about the area -so don't hesitate to take her advise on what to do or see. We enjoyed our stay at the Pickled Onion and Valerie couldn't have been a better host. We hope to return next year !

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank carejim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
pickMerida, Owner at The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant, responded to this review, 11 March 2013
How lovely your comment and how much it is appreciated
Building from ground zero has been a rather rocky adventure but gladly it is now paying off so that I can host lovely people like yourselves.
When clearing began, to start building, the wildlife seemed to disappear but now the trees are all maturing and for me its a wonder to see the birds return.
This year i have watched two baby woodpeckers grow to maturity right in front of the restaurant . A pair of grassquits return every year and peck on the kitchen window to let me know they are back then I bring out the seed for them. The squirrel cuckoo drops in every year but just for a short time but always a thrill to see him.
I hope when you come back there will be more species for you to view and there will be a welcome mat waiting for you.
Valerie
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Edmonton, AB
Level Contributor
48 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 March 2013

We had the pleasure of staying at the Pickled Onion for one night early February while touring the ruins and the Cacao Museum. We actually tried to book a second night about 7 weeks prior to arrival, but she was booked up. So during the busy season, try to book far enough in advance!

The traditional Mayan style of the cabanas made for a unique stay. We had the Wolis Nah - two double beds and a single which fit our party of 5 perfectly! Two of the kids also started out sleeping in the two provided hammocks, but they ended up back in their beds as although comfortable, were a little cool. The room was very clean and nicely furnished, it had a mini fridge, coffee maker and a private outdoor sitting area out the back door. It is situated closest to the parking lot and a quaint parking spot had been made for our use. Due to the peaked thatched roof style, the whole interior is open. There is a nice clean and tiled bathroom, but it has no door. This concerned the children and we had to make sure to yell before entering to make sure no one was busy in there!

It is obvious that there is a lot of TLC that goes into this place and it shows...loved the garden paths and the variety of trees, shrubs and flowers. The entire property is very well kept and clean. The pool is lovely with a hammock hanging over the shallow end. One of the waiters came to us at the pool for drink orders which was very nice. Supper was great with authentic Yucatanean dishes. We were lucky enough to be there when another guest was celebrating his 65th b-day. Valerie, the owner, arranged for a couple of men to come and sing and play their guitars as a surprise for the birthday, and of course we all enjoyed that. The included breakfast was a huge plate of fruit, banana bread, toast, granola, coffee and juice.

We ordered our picnic lunches the night before and then picked them up when we had breakfast. This allowed us to eat when we fancied - once at the parking lot at the Cacao Museum - which had concrete seating around trees at the edge of the parking lot, and the other in the bleachers of a baseball diamond near a small town as we were heading to Valladolid! There was a sandwich - we had roast beef and the ham - both good, salad, a fruit, snack (mixed nuts) etc and a cold bottle of water.

I think our only slight concern would have been the fact that our cabana was the closest to the road and although it is a rural setting, there was road traffic and the occasional loud large truck that went by until about 11 p.m. and again in the morning starting just before dawn. Also next door there is a home on an acreage and they have chickens etc. The rooster was crowing early in the morning. If you are sensitive to these things, earplugs are recommended! We always travel with them anyways!

We did enjoy the early morning bird song though and viewing the different birds flitting about the trees.

Valerie is a fantastic host and full of information on the area, and we enjoyed our time spent at the Pickled Onion. It was the perfect place at the perfect price for our family! We hope to return some time.

Room Tip: Rooms towards the back would have less road noise. We heard occasional big truck noise until around...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Albertamom-of-4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
pickMerida, Owner at The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant, responded to this review, 8 March 2013
Thank you for writing your comment . I do appreciate that people take the time to write.
As I mentioned in the last review the carpenter is now in the middle of making doors for the bathrooms..So soon they will be done on Mexican time LOL .
It has been a labor of love along with tears,and heartache since I started this business but when I see people enjoying my small area it makes me happy
The road noise only recently started to happen and this is due to the new road from Campeche to Merida where they have started a toll payment . Therefore the trucks are starting to avoid paying for this super highway! i have already been to talk to the secretaria del palacio but they informed me there is nothing to be done at this time as it is a federal road and nothing to do with the village of Santa Elena
I am not the only one that is feeling this effect all the local hotels and even the local people have the same complaint... lets see what we can do!!!
Unfortunately the cocks that crow dont seem to have an alarm clock but again it is really part of life in rural Mexico and one can even get this in the city.
Nothing is goo and nothing is bad but all is an experience
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Lake Arrowhead, California
Level Contributor
107 reviews
63 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 March 2013

After reading so many reviews about this B&B, we made it a point of staying here overnight. They didn't disappoint. There are several small Mayan-styled huts scattered throughout a beautifully maintained garden. Our hut was closest to the small pool, which had several chairs, tables and a hammock swinging over the shallow end. While the room was very basic and simple, it had everything we needed--INCLUDING a coffee maker with all the fixings (bless you, Valerie!)

I can't say enough about the graciousness of Valerie Pickles, the owner. She met each guest personally and made it a point to stop by and chat a bit with each one. We thoroughly enjoyed trading our experiences of living in Mexico with her. She went above and beyond by decorating the dining room with Valentine's Day hearts, and even had roses for all the women! Nice touch!

Typical of hotels in this area, the windows are made of screen, not glass. The room had shutters that we closed at night for privacy, but that meant sacrificing any fresh breeze. Also, the toilet/shower were just on the other side of a partial wall--no doors, limited privacy. Just a couple things to know before you go.

We started on the Puuc Route early in the morning, finishing up at the Loltun caves late in the afternoon, and stayed at Uxmal that night, wanting to be within walking distance of those ruins. The Pickled Onion was the perfect starting point for the loop, and Valerie couldn't have been a kinder hostess!

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank alison98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
pickMerida, Owner at The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant, responded to this review, 7 March 2013
Thank you so much for your lovely comments they were very welcoming .
The carpenter is now in the middle of making some kind of doors to separate the bathroom from the sleeping area.Thanks for your idea .
Because the houses are of a Maya design it would spoil the effect if we put in glass windows or curtains . Actually the rooms are far enough apart so one could leave the shutters open all night and still retain ones privacy .
in my own little casita, before retiring ,I open all the shutters and it does allow for a nice breeze along with the ceiling fans but when we have a cold front ,which does happen occasionally, I keep the shutters tight closed.
I hope you continue having wonderful experiences in your travels wherever you choose to go
Valerie
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Additional Information about The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant

Property: The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant
Address: Carretera 261 Uxmal a Kabah | Uxmal, Santa Elena 98760, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Yucatan > Santa Elena
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 B&Bs / Inns in Santa Elena
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A unique Eco-Boutique Bed and Breakfast located close to Uxmal, Kabah, Sayil and Labnah. Quaint Maya style rooms, complete with private entrance, bathrooms, refrigerator ,coffe maker bottled water,toiletries, safety boxes, Wi Fi in all rooms ,clean, comfortable and secure, set in peaceful surroundings. Rooms are adorned with my own paintings. Beautiful gardens with labyrinth. Area for Yoga, Tai chi etc. Mini Spa.Swimming pool Excellent restaurant where you can taste some of the Yucatan cuisine. Located close to the village where you can experience Maya life as it really is.The bar awaits you for the best cocktails/margaritas in the area, as well as wine and beer.You have the luxury of Wi fi in all areas including your rooms .An artisan shop where you can buy items including locally made hammocks and snack shop if you want a small snack in-between meals. All the staff are local people from Santa Elena and all structures were build by local people too, including wood work, iron work etc I maybe a foreign owner but how good that work has been created for the local people who would otherwise not have an income. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Pickled Onion B&B / Restaurant Mexico/Santa Elena, Yucatan

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