Many Mexican cities have become Americanized, but San Miguel de Allende perserves the Mexican authenticity that makes it a prime travel destination.
In a New York Times article from May 22nd, James C. McKinley Jr. writes, “The jacaranda trees are blooming, and so too is this 16th-century colonial town, thanks to an ambitious renewal effort that is halfway through its two-year run. Every building along the narrow cobblestone streets has been repainted in the colors of a desert sunset: ocher and sienna, deep orange and clay red. The government is restoring churches and theaters, rebuilding plazas and illuminating the arches of the plaza and the ornate spires of the main church with Disneyland-like brightness.
The civic improvements have coincided with a housing boom as Americans searching for vacation homes are increasingly buying up property in the old section of town, anchored by the Parroquia de San Miguel de Allende, a Gothic-style construction of spires and arches.
…All this investment has not altered the bones of the place: the 300-year-old architecture from Spain, the heavy, carved wooden doors along narrow sidewalks, the explosion of bougainvillea over compound walls surrounding meticulous courtyards. Unlike Cancun or Acapulco, where American fast food joints and discos rule, San Miguel de Allende still feels like Mexico.”