Trip Report

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Posted by Kathy in Portland on March 15, 2001 at 19:48:35:

This board has been so helpful I just had to post a trip report.

WOW! I’ve been other places in Mexico but Zihuatanejo is truly special. 6 of us spent 8 days at the end of Feb. in Zihua. We rented Casas Hueso and Rosa (owned and managed by Francisco Ibarra of La Perla) located just above La Ropa at the very south end. Great location and wonderful houses. The 2-bedroom house, Casa Hueso, has the most amazing stone porch that serves as the house’s main living area. It’s about 30 feet long, covered, fully furnished with a beautiful view of La Ropa and, at night, lots of twinkling lights on the hill. Lots of important time was spent in the hammocks. Francisco was incredibly accommodating; if we needed or desired anything at all, it happened immediately (beach towels, CD player, 5 gallon jugs of water …). The houses were well-equipped, comfortable, very clean and the staff was great. Sandra, who cleaned, regularly brought fresh flowers from her garden. Francisco spent some time orientating us to the area, pointing out markets and such on the map; he also arranged for us to charter a boat for a day trip to Manzanillo for sun, fun & snorkeling (highly recommended – it was beautiful. Coral sea floor and the softest, whitest, beach. And great fish). He also spent time with us whenever we went to La Perla – which was often. The food and drinks were very good and, for cigar-lovers, great cigars that you just can’t get here. I’d definitely stay at his property again and I’d be happy to give anyone more information about the rentals (I'll also help define "eco-rental"). Muchos Gracias, Francisco.

The best thing about the location of Casas Hueso & Rosa is they're walking distance to Las Gatas. A few times we made the easy trek (15 minutes) over the rocks and spent the day at Las Gatas. Our first day at Las Gatas we were greeted at the pier by Gustabo who, like everyone else, pitched his restaurant (El Rayo Sol or something; it’s in the middle with red umbrellas and blue chair pads). We walked along the beach and talked and I liked him, so when we got to his place it seemed as good as any and we stayed. And we were very glad we did; we went to Gustabo’s every time we went to Las Gatas. The service was great, food & drinks were great and Gustabo was really nice. For lunch he brought out some freshly caught fish and we chose one for lunch, which was then grilled and served with grilled shrimp (sooo good! with garlic and butter) tortillas, guacamole, rice, etc. Grilled fish lunch for 6 -- with all the fixins’ -- was $380 pesos. And, of course, snorkeling right off the beach was great! As was renting rafts for $3/day and floating around with cool drinks enjoying the warmth and beauty of Las Gatas. Ahhhh.

Another highlight was our last night, during which we planned to celebrate a couple birthdays. 2 of us had gone to Isle Ixtapa hoping for JJ’s paella (per Rob’s list); alas, JJ didn’t make paella that day but arranged for a paella birthday dinner at Brutus’ in central Zihua. What a fiesta! A table out it the “garden” (private, grassy area in back with some plants – actually rather nice and they say it will be nicer), countless appetizers, fresh and delicious paella, dessert, mariachi music, really nice and friendly staff, drinking, dancing … it was really, really fun. JJ, though not the owner, hung out with us all night and brought the leftover paella to us at the beach the next day for lunch! JJ, Brutus and Brutus’ staff (I’m sorry I don’t remember everyone’s name) were the most generous, gracious hosts. I highly recommend Brutus’ – and JJ’s new restaurant he says will be opening across the street from Brutus. There were 8 of us that night and the final bill, with tip (which included all the food and LOTS -- and I mean LOTS of drinks), was $700 pesos a couple. Wow.

So much more, but this is so long! We’ll definitely be in Zihua again next year, and again, and again ... Thanks so much to everyone who contributes to this board.

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