We rented this property to use as a "home base" for 2 1/2 months (May-Jun-July) whilst working on a engineering project nearby.
I found the property to be excellent in this function.
3 spacious bedrooms and multiple living areas allowed 3 work colleagues to live together in harmony after hard days working on site.
The house is like a relaxing oasis. Much better atmosphere and much better value than 2 rooms in a half decent hotel. ( I have spent months living in hotels previously).
There is space enough for visiting family, with a family friendly layout and a private park, pool and tennis court for the kids to play in the estate.
It is located on the eastern side of the main town area (which was handy for our easterly commute each day in that direction). A property closer to town centre I doubt would have this much space or be so quiet and relaxing.
The separate office area with fast and reliable internet was very handy for the work I needed to complete in the evenings.
The house and garden is well maintained, with friendly cleaning staff and gardeners. Local property manager Victor ensured that we didn't have to worry about anything.
A fully equipped Kitchen and an outdoor barbecue & dining area is perfect for cooking, if you are into that sort of thing.
As for myself, I was a little busy, so other than making toast and coffee, the kitchen did not see much action.
This brings us to Ajijic and the local dining options.
There are so many excellent restaurants and cafes to chose from. You could eat out 7 days a week ( as I did ) for months and still not visit the same places twice. From casual cafe's, local Jalisco cuisine, French, Italian, Thai, American, Chinese, steakhouses , "rib's & wings", seafood, a micro brewery and even a German restaurant are all excellent options we tried within Ajijic itself.
The house is located exactly 1 mile walking to the town square, (we used the car most often with limited time after returning from work each day) but it could easily be accessed, on foot ( leave the high heels at home) or you could use the local Ajijic-to-Chapala service which stops almost out front of the estate regularly.
That said, there are still several good dining options within a few hundred yards of the house.
Generally we drove the few minutes to town and strolled around in the charming cobblestone streets to find a new restaurant each night. In this time of year we had no trouble with getting a table.
As Ajijic does have a reasonable proportion of ex-pat Canadian and American population, most of the local restaurants, shops galleries and weekend market sellers make it easy with someone with limited ( very limited ) Spanish compared to other areas in Mexico.
I would definitely recommend this property and Ajijic town for a home/office base when working in the local area. Southern Guadalajara, (GDL airport), Poncitlan, and even Ocotlan are all 30min - 1hr easy drive.
Lastly, thankyou to Geraldine, the owner, for the easy communication, when we had any questions and for flexibility with us changing our plans and extending our stay. I would like to come back for a REAL holiday with my family next time.
In future projects in other countries i will be looking to Tripadvisor rentals as an alternative option to months in hotel rooms.
four of us stayed in this house feb and march of 2016. we also had 3 small dogs. we loved everything about the house. the two lovely cleaning women were a delight. great location.beautiful inside and out.
If you're looking for a lazy holiday filled with great food and a delightful sleepy town to explore look no further than Ajijic which is 30 minutes from Guadalajara airport and nestled along Lake Chapala with a picturesque view of the hilly shores opposite. I was delighted when my wife discovered 26 Jacarandas in La Villita on Trip Advisor. We found this property ideal for our 'do as little as possible vacation' which included visiting several friends who live nearby. The design of the house is ideal, starting with the back yard oasis. It is a combination of outdoor kitchen, dining and living, set among a splendid fountain, lush foliage and hovering hummingbirds.
Its owner is an entertaining Canadian lawyer who provided us with a spectacular breakfast every day which she took delight in incorporating local delicacies for us to learn about. The house is neat as a pin and is a treasure trove reflecting her love of art and curios that she's collected over the years. The enclave is quiet and well-looked after and has a little communal park and pool which fortunately for us faced the house and if we did not want to venture there we could just watch from the porch which also had some gorgeous furniture that encouraged much relaxed chatting and lounging around! We decided not to rent a car and that was a good decision as the local taxi service was polite and prompt. It was mere 80-100 pesos cab ride from La Villita (adjacent to La Floresta residential community) on the outskirts of Ajijic proper to the other end of Ajijic. When there's no traffic its no more than 10 minutes to get there.
Talking of the other end of the town, one lovely seafood restaurant, Tabarka, which a favourite of one of our friends who moved to Ajijic nearly 15 years ago, is run by a talented young Spaniard from Alicante who made the best tenderly grilled octopus this side of the Mediterranean and all his other dishes were equally mouth watering. Other interesting spots included Mario's in San Antonio, a real down-home authentic Mexican restaurant for the locals and more enterprising foreigners.
When we first arrived we thought we might be a bit off the beaten track but soon discovered that we were brilliantly placed for a short walk to the local mall that offered everything from a Scotia bank to a multiplex that screens in both Spanish and English, a Wal-Mart, Peter's Panino - a fabulous bread shop to a gourmet food shop, a fresh fish shop, liquor store and on and on.
And then we discovered Adelita, a restaurant that is run by a Toronto musician and his Mexican wife which has recently been renovated. The food was excellent and offers generous versions of all North American favourites, the staff was incredible and though we missed it I was told that the owner programmed local and Canadian musicians twice a week and it's crammed to rafters. One Sunday we got together with some dear friends for brunch and went to San Remy - quite honestly its civilized style and hospitality rivaled a sophisticated brunch in any major city.
The only thing of note is that for better or worse are the cobble stones that are everywhere! So tread carefully. For those who don't deal well with altitude - Ajijic is 5,000 feet above sea level. So take some altitude pills. That's the only warning you'll need because the rest is a joy, the food, the people, the outdoor markets and of course our little home-away-from-home at 26 Jacarandas!
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We stayed in this lovely home for a month over the Christmas Holidays, a very busy and noisy time of year in Ajijic. This beautifully renovated house is in a gated park-like community with 24-hour security and is close to all amenities. Three large bedrooms and five bathrooms accommodated 5 adults with room to spare. With a grocery store within walking distance, we made good use of the large dining room and fully equipped kitchen to prepare our own meals and entertain guests. Modern bathrooms, gas fireplaces and other updated features provided comfort and convenience while retaining a distinctive Mexican flavor. We really enjoyed the fabulous outdoor kitchen and took advantage of the many cozy sitting areas for sun and shade alike. While being tucked away from the bustle of the villages, we were only a few minutes' walk to everywhere in Ajijic and San Antonio. This is a house that shows it is truly loved and the owner was keen to ensure all our needs were met for a great holiday. The management company was responsive to the very few issues and questions that arose. Add all that amazing sunshine, and our holiday was very special indeed.