Guadalajara is the fourth largest city in Mexico and the largest & capital of the state of Jalisco. I wasn't entirely sure what to expect touching down in GDL but I knew that because I'd be in Mexico I could count on exquisite cuisine, incredible architecture, good art, and warm people. During my week in the city, this is exactly what I experienced and so much more. This is the culture I know and I am always filled with so much pride when back in the country of my lineage.
GDL (which is Guadalajara for short) is home to Mariachi music and tortas ahogadas, but in the past decade it has been touted as an art, design, and culinary destination–three of my greatest passions. It's not every city that immediately has me itching to book a trip back, but that's what Guadalajara stirred up in me, and not simply because I had a fun date with a really cute Mexican painter. It was everything about the city. The lush tree-lined streets of Colonia Lafayette, the ceramics in Tlaquepaque, and the blue agave fields in the Highlands. Every moment spent in Guadalajara was special. Just over 3 hours on a plane from LAX–GDL, an incredible city awaits you.
Calle Cabañas 8, Las Fresas, 44360 Guadalajara, Jalisco
+52 33 3668 1642
Mexico is home to 34 Unesco World Heritage sites, making it the most in all of the Americas. Las Cabañas is not to be missed, seriously not to be missed, while in Guadalajara. The major highlight of the site is the series of monumental frescoes by José Clemente Orozco, including The Man of Fire, which is one of his most famed works of art, completed in1939.
Taller Paco Padilla
Calle Prisciliano Sanchez 142, Tlaquepaque, Jalisco
+52 33 363 54838
Only a brief twenty-five minute drive from Guadalajara is Taller Paco Padilla, a cool ceramic studio in Tlaquepaque, a puebla just outside the city. I had the opportunity to take a private tour of this space and loved every minute of it. I bought a lot of unique pieces here; you'd be amazed at how far your dollar gets you at Studio Padilla.
Calle Miguel Lerdo de Tejada 2308, Lafayette, 44160, GDL
+52 33 367 92000
This unique property is on the roster of hotelier geniuses Grupo HABITA. Casa Fayette is for the sophisticate who is obsessed with beauty. It's a1940's mansion which was transformed into a design paradise within the city. This 37-room boutique hotel is located in Colonia Lafayette, with a roof top pool, delicious & beautiful restaurant, multiple bars, and spa. If interiors are your thing, this is like going to actual heaven.
Av. de la Paz 2219, Lafayette, 44140 Guadalajara, Jalisco
+52 33 381 80060
This is a hotel for art lovers and party goers. Hotel Demetria is located in Colonia Lafayette, known for its vibrant arts and culture scene. The10,000-square-foot boutique hotel has 37 rooms & six apartments. Amenities include a gym, rooftop pool, jacuzzi and two bars. You can find Agua de Piedra and Casa Bosques Chocolates in your room. When you book, ask for the giant bathtub.
Efrain González Luna 2061, 44140 Guadalajara, Jalisco
+52 33 361 53591
This is one of my favorite designed restaurants in the world, like top 2. It's absolutely beautiful and the food is savory, seasonal, and will not disappoint. Meats are big on the menu but I also ate one of the best salads of my life here. Perfect place for romance, even if you are single. You feel sexy here. I love everything about it. The Cadena brothers really did something special here.
Av. Mexico 2903, 44690 Guadalajara, Jalisco
+52 33 361 57400
If you love seafood, it's stunning here and prepared to perfection. The vibe is high in Alcalde and Chef Paco Ruano is crafting magic with his hands. A menu full of great cocktails for those who appreciate a good libation. This is where I had the best rice pudding of my life if you really want to know what time it is. When you visit Guadalajara, it would be a sin not to eat at Alcalde.