By Sandy Zimmerman
Unique . . . Exotic . . . Extraordinary . . . Your journey through the state of Michoacan is not the usual Mexican trip!
Not as well known as some of the other areas of Mexico, everything about Michoacan is different.
You experience the difference while walking around the cities, dining in their restaurants and staying in the hotels.
The strong Spanish influence is everywhere, buildings dating from the 1500’s-1600’s still stand to echo their stories of the past.
Unesco named the entire capitol city of Morelia a world heritage site, an outdoor museum.
These beautiful historic buildings create the feeling that you are on a movie set of another era.
And your adventure continues with each meal.
Stepping into the past, the Hotel Villa Montãna is part of the beauty and history of Morelia.
The elegance of the Montãna, their incredible gourmet delights and the love story of the owners are the makings of a script for Hollywood.
When you drive through the wrought iron gate and enter the grounds, you are suddenly transported to a 50 year old, historic mansion.
The paths take you around 4 acres of sculptures, gardens, terraces and private patios.
Experience the feeling of fine dining where you are surrounded by expensive museum-quality paintings, antiques and intricate carvings.
While being entertained by a pianist, choose from French, International, or Mexican cuisine.
French Count Nicolas de Reiset saw the Villa Montãna 30 years ago and fell in love with it.
Much later Ava, an attractive Parisian femme, visited Morelia and fate brought her to stay at his hotel.
They married and still enjoy being around the hotel and greeting their guests.
The Montãna is a romantic setting high in the mountains with breathtaking views of the city.
Tyrone Power and Ava Gardner spent time here during the shooting of the film “The Sun Also Rises.”
Rendezvous with the Past.
Visiting Mexico’s state of Michoacan is like suddenly being swept back into the 16th century.
You must travel “off the beaten path” throughout Michoacán’s small villages and cities to really experience their attractions.
We usually see hand-crafted masks in Mexican shops and markets, but seldom watch the folk artist as he creates his masterpieces.
During a stop in Tocuaro, Gustavo Horta Horta and his son demonstrate the secrets of making life sized wooden masks at their Puerta de Sol studio.
Gustavo’s exciting technique carves his intricate designs into one block of wood.
Throughout Mexico’s history, even before the Spanish arrived, these beautiful ethnic masks were used in parades and dances.
They make great wall hangings and collectables.
The copper-making factory and museum is a highlight of touring the city of Santa Clara del Cobre.
This pre-Hispanic tradition of martillado (beaten or hammered) copper techniques are still used today.
Six men alternate their hammering in quick, precision dance-like motions.
The state of Michoacan is located between Guadalahara and Mexico City.
Experience the “total difference” by touring other exciting cities in Michoacan.