Casa Alvarada, An Off-the-Beaten-Path Gem

Meson Don Jose

Until 2002 when Comala was named a Pueblo Magico  by the Mexican government (a designation given to historically significant Mexican towns), most of the town’s tourism was pass-through. People came on their way to Manzanillo to eat lunch at one of the plaza’s quaint botanera restaurants or pick up some of their famous bread to Casa Alcarada villago. But in the last fifteen years or so lots of new businesses have popped up in this whitewashed town at the foot of the volcano, including the Casa Alvarada, the cozy B&B started by Jupiter Rivera in his former family home. Now if you want to enjoy all that Comala has to offer, you have a lovely place to stay overnight.

Casa Alvarada glitters in the semi-tropical heat just a few blocks from the city’s main plaza on a quiet residential street. The house has 5 rooms in its main building attached the reception area and three more in an annex house down the street called Meson Don Jose.

Meson Don Jose is a classic piece of colonial-style architecture, with a small central patio, open-air kitchen and sitting area and a large kitchen. The rooms are on the second floor amidst several open-air balcony areas. There are two rooms with two double beds, each with their own private bath and one room with a single double bed without a bath. The rooms in this house aren’t air conditioned but have ceiling fans and windows that keep things relatively cool. Still, if you are the kind of traveler that needs AC or worries about leaving your windows open because of mosquitos, best to stay in the main house.

Casa Alvarada patio

The main house area has five rooms clustered around another small patio, there are several covered seating areas, but this patio feels a little more exposed to the elements than the one at Meson San Jose. An floating outdoor day bed is strung from the trees and there are several chairs in clusters around the patio. This part of the B&B has two standard rooms, each with one king-size bed, a standard superior which is a little bigger than the regular standard with both a king-size and a sofa bed, one room with two doubles, and one suite with a king-size bed, dining and living room area and a private terrace.

Each room is tastefully decorated with traditional textiles and local art. In fact, on the walls are several prints of local celebrity painter Alejandro Hidalgo, Colima’s most famous artist whose nearby former home, the Nogueras Ex-Hacienda, is a worthy visit while you are in town. The city itself has a pleasant central plaza which is always buzzing with activity and Comala is known for its delicious bread (which I attest to), so don’t miss it. The Hacienda Nogueras that I previously mentioned is about 10 minutes from Comala and a nice visit for a few hours. Casa Alvarada has an in-house tour company, Admire Mexico, with high knowledgable guides and lots of options for experiences out in  the surrounding nature. They organize trips to hikes the nearby volcano and visit coffee producing villages. Contact them in advance to set something up for your visit.

Casa Alvarada hotel

Rooms prices can include breakfast or not and run from about 30-90usd a night. The continental breakfast in the morning includes fruit, juice, coffee, and eggs and takes place in the house’s main dining room area which has a library of books along one wall for you to peruse. The internet in both houses worked great, but it was tricky to find a three-pronged outlet so bring your adaptor.

The Casa Alvarada and Los Suspiros, another local B&B, are your two best options for staying in Comala, but Alvarada’s added plus of an on-site tour company makes it the best match for visitors wanting to venture beyond the town’s limits. Make your reservation through an OTA like or Expedia or go directly to the hotel website.

Disclaimer: This hotel hosted me but all opinions and descriptions are my own. All photos except for top photo courtesy of Casa Alvarada.




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