Price Band: $$$
Tags: Hacienda, family friendly, sightseeing, secluded
Price Band: $$$
Tags: Hacienda, family friendly, sightseeing, secluded
In a nutshell:
Lovingly restored Hacienda, close to Merida and with an ideal location for touring by car. One of the best options for families visiting Merida and the surrounding area, it has huge and affordable two bedroom suites and large rooms that can accommodate a family of six, as well as romantic rooms for couples. Good facilities, including two swimming pools and an excellent restaurant.
Staying in a restored hacienda is a dream come true for many visitors to Mexico. It’s the best way to immerse yourself in the history of this region and to experience the lavish lifestyle of the henequen lords. Enjoy dinner on a portico terrace, stroll through the colorful gardens, sleep beneath a soaring beamed ceiling or snooze in a hammock. It only takes a few days to build some lasting memories.
We fell in love this hacienda hotel for its intimacy and charm, and then loved it even more when we realized how versatile and convenient the guest rooms are. We’ve struggled for years to find a hacienda with great rooms for families. Here there are options for parents with two, three or even four children who are too young to have their own independent room.
Of course, the pretty gardens and historical charm are perfect for couples too. There is an exquisite little chapel that is ideal for small weddings, and the tranquility and rural seclusion of the estate makes it a wonderful choice for an escapist honeymoon too.
The hacienda has two large swimming pools and even offers spa services, so there’s plenty for guests to do when they are not out exploring the area.
This is also one of the few hacienda hotels where it’s not essential to rent a car – it’s only a short taxi ride from Merida’s vibrant downtown, so you can enjoy an evening in the city if you like. We also recommend the tour to the Hacienda Sotuta de Peon, where you can ride in the sisal “truks”, see the henequen machinery at work and snorkel in a cenote. You’ll be picked up from and returned to the Hacienda Santa Cruz, so it makes the perfect day trip.
For a longer stay, we still recommend car rental, so that you can fully explore this amazing region. A local car rental company will meet you at the airport and drive you to the hacienda in your rental car, making the arrival process simple. In any case, the hacienda is easy to find, being just off the periferico, the main highway around Merida. It’s only about fifteen minutes’ drive from the airport – so close that you can see the planes clearly overhead – but it’s not a busy airport so we never found this to be a problem.
We recommend checking out the excellent packages that are often available, including tours, spa treatments and/or meals. The owners are French, and several languages are spoken fluently. As you might expect, the cuisine at the hacienda is also outstanding!
There’s no need to compromise on comfort to experience the magic of staying in a hacienda hotel. Although full of historical charm, every guest or suite at the Hacienda Santa Cruz is equipped with the latest remote control air-conditioning, ceiling fans, hairdryers and minibars.
The standard rooms are ideal for a couple, but for a real treat we recommend reserving one of the Junior or Master Suites. The Junior Suites have a queen or a king bed, plus a single bed that can also be used as a daybed. There’s a good deal of privacy between the two sleeping areas, so these rooms also work well for two friends who want to share a room.
The fabulous Master Suites are huge, but are worth splurging on, even for just two people. They each have a private terrace and enormous bathrooms that are bigger than a guest room in some hotels. These suites have a master bedroom with a king bed and a second bedroom with two beds. In some cases there’s a door between the two rooms, and in other cases just an archway, but there’s always plenty of privacy. Families with two teenagers or older kids will love these suites.
The Casita is a unique suite that can sleep up to six people. The interior is very spacious and is partitioned into two sleeping areas; one with a king bed and the second with a double and two single beds. Truly an excellent option for a family with three or even four younger children.
Summary of room facilities
Air-conditioning, ceiling fan, hairdryer, minibar.
Veleta – Double Superior
Tapenko – Double Superior
Madinina – Double Superior
Two double beds
Malanga – Double Superior
Capillita – Junior Suite
Queen bed and single bed
Karibea – Junior Suite
King bed and single bed
Casita – Casita
1 King bed, 2 twin beds, 1 double bed
Pozo – Master Suite
1 King bed and 2 twin beds
Kancab – Master Suite
1 King bed and 2 twin beds
Karukera – Master Suite
1 King bed and 2 twin beds
This charming room is located in the Casa Principal of the hacienda, facing a garden to the rear of this building. It has a lovely, serene terrace furnished with a hammock, table and chairs.
Veleta has a king size bed and, like all the rooms at the hacienda, has both air-conditioning and a ceiling fan.
The bathroom is spacious and features a large shower. It’s just as colorful as the bedroom, offering a cheery start to every day.
The second superior room is #9. It is located in the Old Machine House and has two double beds. This amazing room has its bathroom built around the lower half of a huge Ceiba tree. Mayan culture has great respect for these tall trees, considered to be the “tree of life” – it is very unlucky to uproot them.
This room doesn’t have a plunge pool, but the large main swimming pool is only a few yards away. In front of the room, a terrace with outdoor furniture overlooks the central gardens.
Each Superior room has a luxurious bathroom with a huge walk-in in shower and a stylish vanity area.
Tapenko is located near to Veleta in the Casa Principal. This room has incredibly high walls and a beamed ceiling. The windows are shuttered in the traditional hacienda style, and it’s easy to imagine yourself back in the 19th century.
Each room was individually furnished by the owners, and you’ll find many unique pieces here. The bed heads were made locally to their designs, yet blend perfectly with the antiques.
Bathrooms at the hacienda have all the modern comforts. In this room there is an indulgent shower with a large shower rose. Hairdryers are provided in all the rooms.
Madinina is a newer double room located near to the chapel. It has two queen beds and is very spacious, with a bright and cheery decor. The bathroom has a stylish vanity area and a generously sized walk-in shower.
Immediately adjacent to Madinina is a similar room with a king bed, Malanga, and the two rooms would be a good choice for a family or friends who prefer rooms close together. These two rooms share a shady patio area.
Malanga is a spacious room with a king bed and a more modern decor. It is adjacent to, and shares a patio with, the two queen bedded room Madinina.
Like all the rooms at the hacienda, Malanga has remote-controlled air-conditioning to keep you cool even during the summer months.
A curtain divides the bedroom area from the large bathroom. There is an attractive vanity unit and a walk-in shower.
We love this pretty junior suite with its curved white walls, almost Greek in style. It was originally the dwelling of a Franciscan monk, and is located next to the chapel.
It is romantic and cozy enough for a couple, but there’s also a second room with a single bed and a high ceiling. An open doorway connects the two rooms.
This colorful junior suite has a bedroom with a king bed and a further sleeping area with a single bed. The two areas are divided by an arch and curtain. The high ceilings make the room seem very light and airy.
There’s an open doorway to the bathroom, which has a shower. Outside the suite is a small terrace that overlooks the gardens. This suite is located near to the pretty chapel.
The Junior Suites work well for a couple with one child, or even for two friends who want to share a room but prefer to have some privacy.
The hacienda’s “casita” can accommodate up to six people very comfortably and is just perfect for a large family to share. Walking into the suite from the shady terrace, you’ll find a bedroom to your left that has a double bed and two single beds. To your right is the master bedroom, with a queen size bed. Drapes separate the two bedrooms.
La Casita has a large bathroom that can easily handle family bath times with boisterous children. It has a large walk-in shower.
The Casita has a private terrace with outdoor seating to the rear of the suite. To the front is a lovely verandah with several hammocks strung up in the shade.
The Hacienda Santa Cruz’s Master Suites are just perfect for a family of four. It’s unusual to find two bedroom suites or connecting rooms in hacienda hotels, but these suites offer plenty of space for parents with children who are too young to have their own rooms.
The Master bedroom has a romantic four poster bed with a large ceiling fan above it. Traditional shuttered windows overlook the picturesque gardens and keep the room cool when closed. There’s a glazed door between the bedroom and the huge bathroom, which has an oversized tub and a huge walk-in shower.
The second bedroom has two twin beds and is divided from the Master bedroom by an archway. Both bedrooms have air-conditioning units as well as ceiling fans, but you’ll find that these rooms are naturally cool and fans alone are usually sufficient.
Suite Pozo has a very shady terrace with a hammock and outdoor seating from which you can admire the tranquil landscape.
This very spacious Master Suite has a lovely, shady terrace with a hammock, only a few paces from the swimming pool. “Kancab” is a ancient Mayan limestone mix that is used to line the walls of the hacienda, leaving a smooth and slightly glossy finish.
When renovating the hacienda, the owners took great care to replicate as much as possible the materials that would have been used in the estate’s heyday. The tiles covering this verandah sourced in France just as they would have been hundreds of years ago. When the sisal boats returned from supplying Europe with their “green gold” they brought back French tiles, fine furniture and other commodities much sought after by the wealthy land owners.
This suite has a Master bedroom with a king bed and a second bedroom with two beds. There are doors between the two rooms. Entering from the terrace, the first room you see is the second bedroom; then you can walk through to the Master Bedroom.
The grand bathroom is the size of some guest rooms in other hotels! It has a huge tub and a pretty vanity area, plus a capacious walk-in shower.
After a day’s sightseeing, it’s a pleasure to return to the hacienda for a relaxing evening meal served on the veranda by the swimming pool. The cuisine is a refreshing mix of Mexican and French-Creole, with each dish beautifully presented.
Signature dishes include “blanquette de veau”, a traditional french veal dish in white wine sauce, and a tasty lamb curry. It’s worth checking out the packages that include meals too. In the “gourmet” packages, fine ingredients such as foie gras and king prawns are used to make the dishes especially memorable. Desserts often have a French twist.
At lunchtime we enjoyed a tasty selection of Mexican antojitos while relaxing in the shade. There is also an option to dine inside in the Casa de Maquinas (the original Machine House of the hacienda); a very grand setting.
To start the day, there’s nothing better than to enjoy breakfast al fresco on the terrace, whilst planning the activities for the day.
The hacienda has two enticing swimming pools to share between just ten rooms. The main pool is near the Casa de Maquinas and has a picturesque setting with row of majestic palm trees to one side and an ancient stone wall to another.
Hanging out poolside in one of the shady hammocks is sheer pleasure. This hacienda invites relaxation and indulgence as well as sightseeing, so be sure to plan time for all these aspects.
The second large pool is located by the spa. When the hacienda is busy, one pool is designated as “adults only”, leaving children free to splash around contentedly in the other.
The nearest airport is Merida (about 10 miles away) and the journey to the hacienda takes about 15 minutes by road. Car rental is not essential, but is recommended. A local rental company can meet you at the airport and drive you in your car to the hotel.
If you don’t want to rent a car, it’s only a short drive from the airport and downtown Merida. Renting a car will give you more freedom to explore the small towns and the more off-the-beaten track sights. The archaeological sites of Uxmal and the smaller Puuc sites are easily toured on a day trip with a rental car.
Cancun airport is about 200 miles / 3 hours away by road.
From Merida airport:
At the airport exit, turn left into Avenida Itzaes. Follow the signs to Uxmal, turning right at the top of the overpass, and onto the Periferico or Ring Road going southeast. At the exit to Dzununcan, make a right turn. You will see the sign to Santa Cruz Palomeque immediately after your turn. Follow the road straight until you enter a little village. Look for the sign to the hacienda on your left opposite the village church and school playground.
From Cancun airport:
Follow the Carretera or Toll Road towards Merida. As you begin to ceel like you are getting to a more urbanized area, you will come to a stoplight. Merida Centro will be straight ahead, and there will be a large Pemex station on the far right corner. Turn left here, south towards Campeche and Uxmal. This will put you on the Periferico or Ring Road. Follow the road until you see the signs for Dzununcan ( salida N°2). Follow the direction of Dzununcan until you enter a little village…..”Santa Cruz Palomeque”. Look for the sign to the hacienda on your left opposite the village church and school playground.