We stayed at Casa de las Columnas for several nights during our visit to Merida and were very pleased with the hotel overall. It is in a wonderful historic building with lots of character. The courtyard is lovely and a wonderful place to relax and read while waiting for your travelling companion to get ready or for escaping the heat of the afternoon. The small pool is a great addition - it isn't large enough to really swim, but it perfect for cooling off and hanging out.
The people at the hotel are very gracious - everyone we met was wonderful. I should mention that we are Americans and did not feel that we were treated any differently than the Mexican guests or guests of other nationalities.
The location of the hotel is a bit outside the city center - we walked to the city center many times and it took us 10-15 minutes at a moderate-to-liesurely pace. Taxis are plentiful and very reasonable - 20-30 pesos each way between the hotel and the city center with the metered taxis, 50 pesos with the zone taxis.
There are a couple improvements that I would make to the hotel:
1. Upgrade the matresses and the bedding. Our mattress was very old and leaned significantly to one side - it was not a comfortable bed. The bedding was also old and worn - it was all very clean, but it had all definitely seen better days. At the rate the hotel charges, I did not expect a luxurious bed, but I expected it to be reasonably comfortable.
2. Add a bit of variety to the breakfast. The coffee, juice, fruit, and pastries were good, but it exactly the same each day. With the variety of fruit available, it would have been nice to see that variety at breakfast.
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