House, 5 Bedrooms + Sunroom, 2 Baths, (Sleeps 8)
- english, spanish
About Margaret Larcade
We fell in love with San Miguel on our honeymoon and returned to study at the Instituto. We returned regularly and John was part of the architecture and planning team for Los Balcones. We are happy that many years later burros still come by our street with their owners carrying wood and garden manure for sale. The fountain at the end of our street seems to be a good resting spot for the burrors and their owners.
Margaret Larcade purchased this House in 1988
Why Margaret Larcade chose Zona Centro
When we first were looking for property, we wanted to be in the el centro area, an easy wish at the time as San Miguel had not grown so very much. We also did not want to go any higher on a street than we could push a wheelchair as our son was born with cerebral palsy. So when people ask us about the walk up 3 blocks, I tell them that up until our son turned 24, we pushed a wheelchair up to the house. My husband, an architect, first looked at the direction of the light and visited the house at different times during the day to see how the light played in the house and garden. The light is wonderful!
What makes this House unique
For us, the benefit is just being there in the heart of San Miguel and in our home which is so visually pleasing to us. Whether we are just sitting around on the black and white tiled entry benches with a geranium on either side having a coffee, or in the garden with our lime tree and flowers intertwined in trees, or up on the roof, we just seem to be happy there. I feel centered. The house also flows with the early morning light to nightfall; being outside in the house is what the house is about. At night, the roof is an incredible place to overlook the sparkle of San Miguel, and the stars. Then we all go into the dining room and living room... all connected space to talk or play Scrabble or other games. Then it feels cozy. The kitchen for Margaritas and leftovers from the usual wonderful lunch prepared by Juana, our cook, is adjacent. We have a wonderful cook who comes with the rental of the house, which is a real vacation from cooking for us and watching her all so many lessons in Mexican cooking. San Miguel is just outside our doors, 5 minutes downhill is el centro with restaurants and just sitting in the Jardin watching San Miguel go by.
Canceled bookings will not receive a refund
Beautiful space! Wonderful and kind Cook
We were looking for a home in San Miguel, ideally one with a cook so that it would be a vacation for everyone in the family, and this home came up in our search. The space is even more beautiful than the photographs suggest, and Juana, the family’s long-time Cook, could not have been kinder, speaking Spanish slowly with our seven-year-old son, who was going to a Spanish camp there, and cooking the most delicious Mexican food you can imagine. we thought that the price would make it a bit of a challenge for us, but we found that because we ate all of our meals at home, we saved money in that regard. Eating out with kids can be a challenge anyway! The owner, Margaret, was very helpful in communications before the trip, and helped us to arrange for Juana to lay in some groceries before we arrived. The location is wonderful, and we got in lots of good walking, with the main park and playground only a 10 minute walk away. It is a very quiet location, other than the occasional 6 AM church bells ringing for festivals! Thank you for a wonderful holiday stay.
I am so happy to read this was such a good home for this family. Eating out in San Miguel can be relatively expensive, even our most favorite inexpensive spot, El Correo, with a Margarita can be $25.00 usd. for 2. Other inexpensive places we like for two run around $35.00. Then add your child. I find that groceries cost about $15.00 usd daily for eating well at home; breakfast, a large comida at 2:00p.m. and leftovers at dinner. Also our cook prepares greens and other vegetables deliciously and her beans are the best as well as her chile rellenos and enchiladas. Of course you are going to want to visit a few restaurants and there are many to choose from. Long time visitors to San Miguel will see that prices have really gone up, but San Miguel is still a bargain for lodging and food in an overall travel view.
Impossible to say enough about how wonderful this house is
Casa Larcade was a blessing for our family. My mom was confined to a wheelchair and the ramps allowed her to view sunsets each evening for the last few months of her life. Juana and Jaime felt like family within weeks. Margaret and her husband are delightful. We look forward to returning in December! The views are incredible, the bedrooms are beautiful, and the garden is magnificent. And, of course, the best location in town! It really doesn’t get much better than this in San Miguel.
Thank you Carol for that great review. Our home remodel, 30 years ago, included a wheelchair ramp for our son and has turned out to be great for everyone, particularly in the evening coming down from the roof. Carol has spent a lot of time in San Miguel so her opinion of our home is so lovely as she has been in so many other homes over the years.
A home with potential, but with too many problems
Although our initial reaction was to the very lovely courtyard, the plantings, the colors of the rooms, and the liveliness of the folk art collection, we very quickly realized that two of the four heaters we were promised had not been installed. We improvised with two portable electric heaters while waiting for the job to be completed. In the meantime we were distracted by the fact that there was barely enough warm water for two people to shower. Over the course of our stay we had to have the water problem corrected three times and it was never totally adequate.
It also turned out that the construction on the abutting house, which had been only obliquely referred to before we arrived, became an ever more pressing problem. By the end of the first ten days the pounding on the wall had become louder and louder and drilling in addition to the pounding had became a major issue. We informed the owner about the situation to which she only replied something to the effect that "it wasn't so bad when I was there". During the last two weeks of our stay we were unable to use our bedrooms after 8:00 in the morning. Frankly we were disappointed that the owner was so dismissive.
There were many other inconveniences such as the lack of heat in the bathrooms, no place to dispose of the garbage in the kitchen itself and other things we might be inclined to overlook had the owner been less defensive and more sympathetic. Only at the very end of our stay did her tone change.
As Homeaway owners ourselves, we can not imagine not having been much more proactive on our own to see that issues were adequate addressed. We also can not imagine having dismissed the discomfort of our guests in such an offhand manner.
These renters have a right to their review. There were 3 issues.
The construction issue next door. Normally in San Miguel there can be heard intermittent rat ta ta tat and Mexican music from construction crew radios, modulated if you ask. This was different. When I was there is early November, there was some early morning pounding, annoying but not continuous. But in January, the crew of the architect/owners who were not in San Miguel, began the deconstruction of concrete stairs leading from the first floor to the second, adjacent to our wall. Not until I spoke with them in early February did I learn of the cause of this horrific pounding. My husband and I had no control over it, the owners did not contact us ahead of time ( they did have our contact information) and they were not going to stop deconstruction anyway. So it was horrible.
In the Fall, we decided to update all our heaters with the best rated heaters available in San Miguel and I worked with our excellent management company to make sure all 4 would be installed by January 1. I was advised in December the first two were installed and that the second two were in the process as there were gas lines to be dealt with. Turns out, the second heaters were installed in the wrong rooms.
These renters had concerns before arriving so on about day 13 of their stay I contacted them to see how their stay was going. Only then was I informed of the heater issue which our management company fixed within 6 hours.
Then about a week later we heard about the limited hot water. It was checked and it turned out the heater was not set to the highest heat. It was reset but again did not continue to deliver. Again it was reset but we ordered a new hot water heater to be purchased and installed which was done quickly, but now at the end of these renters’ stay.
Normally I get to know our renters by phone, feel responsible for their stay and consider them stewards of our very personal home. Knowing ahead that January would be a horrible deconstruction time, I would not have rented the house and asked the architects for some kind of reimbursement for ruining this most popular month. But this scenario is a dream with unknowns about the schedule and type of work and the owners you are dealing with.
From mid March to mid April, we have no renters, the owners saying by then quieter, with finishing work. Our future renters were advised and will be again advised.
Charming, romantic, super central property in San Miguel de Allende
This is our 4th visit to this property and we adore it! The location is ideal. The gardens, colors and rooftop are super for relaxing and sharing great moments.. Rhe heaters have been upgraded and additional down comforters are in place making the cold winter nights so much more pleasant 😁 Thank you Margaret and Juana. Of course speaking of Juana, she creates the perfect atmosphere. She is the heart of this home in many ways! We love her.
All in all a wonderful stay as always!
Thank you Ric. The months of December and January can be cold at night and most homes are heated by heaters. These old colonial homes have thick walls and built 100 to 300 years before central heating. During the day you layer your clothes and enjoy the sun without snow or ice. Afternoons are warm in our garden and rooftop. Remember that you are in the mountains. These renters were our test for our updated heaters, additional quilts along with plenty of blankets and throws on the beds that can be taken to the roof for star gazing at night. The hottest month of the year is May when from 1-4 p.m. you want to be in the shade.
Amazing home in San Miguel de Allende
My husband and I loved this beautiful home and can't recommend it highly enough. It's clean, well-tended and in a central but quiet location. A private oasis. Juana, the cook, is a real gem and prepared delicious, traditional Mexican lunches for us. Thank you for the memorable stay!
Thank you Christine for your review. If homes can have two centers, Juana, our cook is one whose heart spreads over the house, the other, the traditional layout of the house and courtyards with the sun rising behind us in the morning and setting on the west facing roof patio looking over the mountains. There are many lovely and fantastic homes in San Miguel, many can be seen on the Sunday Home tours sponsored by the library, but few of those are for rent. We enjoy renting and sharing our home and say thank you because without you, our wonderful and appreciative renters we could never have such a beautiful home to share.
Wonderful place to spend our Spring Break week in SMA
Beautiful and welcoming home; convenient to everything walkable; delicious food by housekeeper!
We are located in the heart of the UNESCO city of San Miguel. You are 7 minutes downhill to the market and the same for the center of town, the Parrochia and Jardin surrounded by restaurants and shopping. The weekly newspaper L'Attencion ( comes out on Friday) lists all the weekly activities. In early August there is the chamber music festival in the small theater downtown, walking distance from our home. The summer brings the writing conference while year long there is music and lectures in the public library all within a 10 minute walk. There are Sunday outings to haciendas with music, and day trips to other nearby towns. We recommend L'Aurora , an old manta ( fabric) factory) now home to artist studios and wonderful textile and home shops. Our home has several guide books with all the shopping and activities. We take taxis ( about $2.60) only when we are carrying groceries up the hill 3 1/2 blocks.