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HACIENDA SAN JOSÉ CHOLUL                                           Printer friendly version


In the southeast of México, bathed by the clear blue waters of the Caribbean and the Gulf of México, lies the peninsula of Yucatán, where the great Mayan culture once flourished amidst tropical forests. At a 45 minutes drive from the International Airport of Mérida, the state capital, and two and a half hours drive by car from Cancún, is where you find Hacienda San José Cholul.

San José Cholul is a smaller more private Hacienda located south east of
Mérida. The 15 rooms and suites are conditioned with exquisite details and located around the main 18th century building, surrounded by beautiful gardens.

We invite you to evoke the splendor of past eras, developed in the luxurious amenities and services expected of a five-star hotel. Learn about the history, their role in the social context of this ever evolving land, the rich juxtaposition of the ancient and modern cultures. Delight in the flavors of their cuisine, the architectural heritage of their rooms and the archeological zones, colonial villages and the natural reserves that surround The Hacienda.

The Hacienda was built in the XVI Century (1549) The land on which The Hacienda San José Cholul was founded was part of two different holdings: The holding of Calcalchén, assigned in this year to Francisco Tamayo Pacheco, and the holding of Tixkokob, which was owned since the start by a cousin of Francisco de Montejo until it became in the hands of Martin de Palomar.

The Hacienda San José Cholul is located on the Yucatán Peninsula, 38 kilometers from Mérida International Airport. Hidden in a zone whose cultural wealth is comparable only with its natural attractions, The Hacienda San José Cholul offers not only an ideal place for resting, but also the possibility of visiting fascinating Maya ruins, colonial convents and crystalline cenotes.

Almost all guest rooms form part of the original building that have been fully restored and adapted to the hotel needs, their high ceilings and unique décor evoke the splendor of past eras. A specific restoration project had been developed to express its particular architectonic personality by conserving the same spirit that its former and original owners gave it. Thus, in some cases, the restoration of buildings brings together both contemporary and traditional aspects and the new spaces and elements serve above all to highlight the artistic and architectonic value of The Haciendas original features.

Most of the rooms features 18-foot ceilings with inside exposed beams and rafters, narrow, 10-foot-high, wooden double doors, beautiful wooden beds and cabinets made of dark tropical hardwoods, cool tile floors and large, bulbous pegs set into the stone walls for hanging the woven cotton hammocks, for which
Yucatán is famous, to allow their guests to sleep in the Mayan Style.

For those who want to perceive an even more Mayan experience we invite them to try the "Mayan Villas". Authentic "Mayan Palapas" which have been transformed into deluxe accommodations combining the unique Mayan Architecture with today's expectations of the highly sophisticated traveler. Definitely a unique experience in a unique place.


  • Private miniature exterior plunge pool in all the suites
  • Private terrace or garden in all suites and some of the superior rooms
  • One king or two double beds
  • Mini bar
  • Wood closets (at least two in each room)
  • Cable TV in all guest rooms
  • Safety box
  • Hammock
  • Direct dial phone
  • High speed Internet in all guestrooms
  • Shower in all rooms
  • Air conditioned and ceiling fans
  • Bathrobes, slippers and daily change of amenities
  • Mini sound system with CD (Mayan Villas)
  • Desk (all suites and some superior rooms)

In addition and according to category the rooms present the following features:

  • Superior rooms: One bedroom with a large bathroom and with a terrace that faces the gardens.

  • Junior Suites: One bedroom Suite, large bathroom and a large terrace with plunge pool and a view to the gardens.

  • Mayan Villas: Very privately located spacious villa with in its oversized bedroom a "hanging bed” and a day bed. Furthermore, the villa counts with a large bathroom, an ample terrace and a plunge pool facing its private gardens.

  • Presidential Suite "Casa del Patron": Ex bedroom of Hacienda owners located in the old main house and now our Master Suite consisting out of a living room, a very extensive bedroom and a spectacular bathroom, ample garden with a private swimming pool (the old cistern of The Hacienda) and beautiful teak garden furniture to take sun and enjoy your privacy.


  • Mountain bikes
  • Mini tour through the property
  • Swimming pool
  • Games (chess, backgammon, cards, etc.)
  • Daily turn-down service
  • Mail services
  • Horseback riding
  • Library
  • Excursion basket with hand towels, Kleenex and repellent for each guest
  • Professional assistance to prepare your personalized "A la Carte" tours
  • Flower decoration and fruit platter at arrival


  • Child care/Babysitting
  • High speed internet
  • SPA services (massages, facials, body treatments and aromatherapy)
  • Romantic dinner in the gardens of The Hacienda
  • Business services
  • Laundry
  • Tours to the archeological sites with driver and/or bilingual guide

Surrounded by major archeological zones and colonial villages like Chichén-Itzá (one hour 15 minutes drive), Ek Balam and Dzibilchaltún and natural reserves (the rare Pink Flamingos in Ría Lagartos), the historical "yellow" city of Izamal and The Hacienda Aké, were you still can see how they worked the Sisal fibers in the glorious days, The Hacienda is the perfect place for cultural day trips.

The Hacienda is also the perfect place for the guests seeking recreation, mountain bikes and horses are available, hikes can be organized. For relaxation use the SPA services, The Hacienda offers or just relax for a while at the border of the beautiful designed and very well located swimming pool.

Weddings and Honeymoons at The Haciendas are simply a unique experience that lasts forever.

The Haciendas have the idyllic wedding venue. Large gardens, the old machine room and the natural surroundings for their backdrop, are the ideal design for weddings and other events. With luxurious accommodations, facilities and amenities for guests, The Haciendas are a totally different and unique alternative for a wedding venue.

After the first contact with the staff at The Hacienda, who will provide you all possible help to make this an extraordinary experience, the magic landscape of The Hacienda, the friendly staff and the relaxing atmosphere, you will have enough reasons to choose The Haciendas as the perfect place for your wedding. Each wedding is tailor-made to suit the groom and bride needs and expectations. Their staff is highly experienced in catering and planning.

Music, video, photography, printed itinerary and floral arrangements; plus organization of day trips for participants.

Birth certificates, blood test done in Mérida (max. 15 days prior to wedding) and Visa (Tourist Card) you receive upon entering México. (Note: For a legal wedding which is also recognized in the United States and Canada there can be no exceptions in these requirements.)

If you promise to relax while enjoying the healing hands of a skilled masseuse, sip cocktails under seemingly airbrushed skies and cherish each and every moment you spend along the Yucatán Peninsula, then say "I do" at The Hacienda San José Cholul and its exclusive Mayan Symbolic Wedding Ceremony.

Whether you arrive to march down the aisle or simply wish to strengthen your vows, this unique package has all the amenities to firmly tie the knot. Included in the package are his and her ceremonial preparations, which provide both the bride and groom with a tender touch massage. The bride further enjoys assistance with putting the finishing touches on her huipil, a traditional Mayan dress. The groom then joins her in his guayabera, a traditional Yucatecan shirt for men, before the two exchange vows in the resort's private chapel. After the traditional Mayan symbolic ceremony, the new Mr. & Mrs. slip away to enjoy cocktails in the gardens complete with serenading Mayan guitars. Also included in the package are the talents of a photographer, a photo album and a post-nuptial newlywed dinner.


  • Preparation of the bride: 30 minutes massage and a regional Mayan wedding dress (Huipil)

  • Preparation of the groom: 30 minutes massage and a typical yucatecan shirt for men (Guayabera)

  • Mayan symbolic ceremony in the private chapel of The Hacienda San José Cholul, decorated with original painted murals and flowers

  • Mayan Children choir dressed with typical regional yucatecan clothes (during the ceremony)

  • A toast in the garden for bride and groom

  • One hour of Mayan guitars players (trio)

  • A folkloric ballet presentation (30 minutes)

  • One album with 20 Photos

Surrounded by dense tropical jungle and exotic wildlife this secluded and beautifully restored Hacienda is possibly the most intimate and exclusive atmosphere where guests are invited to distance themselves from the outside world.

The term “Hol Bé” comes from the Mayan language and translates as "Open Way or Opening the Way in the forest" which sets the mood for the unique calming experience within the SPA. Helping to preserve the ancient Mayan healing practices of the Yucatán Peninsula, a select group of the local Mayan therapists have been carefully chosen to provide the special treatments and services offered in the SPA. Several of the therapist’s ancestors were authentic Mayan "Sobadores" or so called "bone healers" and throughout generations handed down techniques and treatments only found in the Mayan world. Their hands and magical restorative spirit help to restore health, energy and beauty in a holistic ambience.

Dedicated to pampering guests in a restful retreat in harmony with nature, The Spas at The Haciendas are based on "high-touch, low tech" concept that celebrates the human touch and use of natural, often indigenous, SPA products.

Maya plan (A couples massages in the privacy of your room)
Seaweed wrap
Mud wrap
Mayan energy massage
Mayan therapeutic massage (relieves muscular and bone contractions)

Swimming pool

Recommended Packages:
“Hol Bé” plan, an ancient Maya energizing treatment starting with a relaxing foot massage and continuing with an exfoliating treatment using totally natural ingredients derived from flowers and honey. The entire body is vigorously massaged to remove dead skin cells. This is followed by an invigorating shower, a rub to detoxify your skin and is finished with a soft and relaxing massage with moisturizing oils. This full body treatment lasts for 125 minutes.

The culinary delights of a typical Yucatecan kitchen come from a mouth watering mixture of European and Mexican flavors (Mestizo Cuisine). A bit of history will explain this strong European influence. Once upon a time the Yucatecan Peninsula was considered to be too far away and too difficult to reach from the rest of México. Mountainous terrain and very poor roads kept the peninsula isolated. Having ports with commercial and cultural contacts with Europe, (especially France), New Orleans, Cuba and Arab immigrants, the Yucatecans were easily influenced by many aspects of these countries and cultures, such as dress, architecture and cooking, which explains why there is a lot of European flare in its cuisine.

Much of the ingredients used in the menu is organic and comes from the gardens of Hacienda San José Cholul or any of the other Haciendas of the group. Fresh-baked bread is "made at The Hacienda" and the fresh fish comes from the different coastal villages you can find at the coast of the state of
Yucatán only 45 minutes from The Hacienda.

Ingredients first used by the Maya include corn, beans, tomatoes, chiles, squash, chaya (a Spinach-like plant), avocado and achiote (annatto). The Spaniards introduced citrus fruit-limes and Seville oranges feature in many dishes, chicken, beef, dairy products, coriander, garlic, olives, oregano and rice. Pork, chicken and turkey are widely used in Yucatecan recipes, usually in conjunction with “recados”, which may contain “achiote,” Seville orange juice, pepper and chiles.

The Hacienda San José Cholul features the Restaurant, overlooking the breathtaking main gardens and located within the old factory buildings. The menu proposes a blend of regional and international cuisine. With our master chef, Reyes Santos, leading the charge, he will show you how to fully grasp the gravity of this emblematic cuisine. He elides nothing offering all his secrets and your culinary knowledge and skills will blossom under his guidance. Reyes Santos cuisine will melt in your hearts.

Once you arrive at The Hacienda do not forget to ask your host for their "Romantic Dinner" arrangements, just imagine your dinner for two served in a perfect hideaway were the grounds are lit by twinkling candles and the only noise you can hear is the sound of the more than 50 species of birds that live on the property. They can also take care of regional romantic music arrangements, the well known local "Trio," just for the two of you.

Imagine a uniquely creative event. From an elegant dinner with twinkling candles and torches in the old machine room to a dinner in the middle of a Mayan Community held in the magnificent main gardens of The Hacienda.

Add their sales executive with the imagination and innovation to ensure the event exceeds all expectations. People who can collaborate with you in planning the ideal incentive experience.

Then picture all this in the luxurious surroundings of one of The Haciendas in the Yucatán Peninsula, México. Each a prime location with its own distinctive style, offering a wide range of ideas for your special events and incentive travel. A colonial city or a historical resort, the choice is yours. And with every Hacienda from Hacienda San José Cholul in Yucatán to Hacienda Puerta Campeche in the city of
Campeche you are guaranteed superb Luxury Collection standards of service.

At The Hacienda the range of ideas and the variety of locations means every event taste can be catered for.

We believe that you deserve much more than just another ordinary event. So you can be sure that whichever Hacienda you choose, with whatever extraordinary event you ask us to stage, your stay will be characterized by just that little bit extra. Extra creativity, extra professionalism and extra enthusiasm. All in true The Haciendas style.

The Henequén Haciendas were subjects of complex disputes over ownership. Over time, they were broken up and gradually abandoned, leaving many of the families of The Hacienda communities who depended for so many years on the "green gold" economy, without work. The result was a high rate of unemployment leaving the following generations without a chance for a better future in the rural area of the Yucatán.

One of the most note-worthy aspects around the reconstruction and opening of The Haciendas as hotels was the social implications of hiring and training of local workers, first in the construction work and later on in hotel positions. These were permanent positions offering better conditions than other employment in the area and gave concrete opportunities for advancement for the inhabitants. Currently 90 per cent of the employees working at The Hacienda San José Cholul are inhabitants from the villages nearby like Calcalchén, Euan and Tixkokob.

The revitalization of The Hacienda has also resulted in the development of a series of social projects. The main purpose of these projects was to create new activities for the local inhabitants that for different reasons were not able to work in the hotel. These projects were primarily focused on the rich cultural traditions that can still be found in most of the Mayan communities in the peninsula such as handicrafts and other manual arts.

The inhabitants of the villages who volunteered to participate in the project were not only trained in producing goods, but were encouraged to use regional natural elements and traditional methods. They also received support with the construction of workshops from the foundation that started the project. The majority of their produce is purchased by The Hacienda for different purposes such as turn down gifts, amenities for the bathroom and items to sell to guests in The Hacienda store.

Another very important initiative completed early in 2004 was the employment and training of local inhabitants to become therapists and offer their services at The Hacienda San José Cholul, several of them with ancestors who were authentic Mayan "sobadoras" or "bone healers." Again, this was a way of creating opportunities for locals, especially women, who would never have had the chance to do this type of work and earn a living.

The foundation that today is responsible for the coordination, financing and supervision of all the social projects is called "Fundación Haciendas del Mundo Maya."

For more information visit: www.haciendasmundomaya.com

For prices, reservations, availability and bookings, please contact us at: visit@luxuriousmexico.com

Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Main Entrance - Photo by The Haciendas
Entrance at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Bar - Photo by German Murillo-Echavarria 0405
Bar at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Pool - Photo by The Haciendas
Pool at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Grounds - Photo by German Murillo-Echavarria 0405
Grounds at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Chapel - Photo by The Haciendas
Chapel at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Room, Mayan Villa, Mayan Bed - Photo by German Murillo-Echavarria 0405
Room with Mayan Bed at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Rooms, Terrace - Photo by The Haciendas.
Rooms Terrace at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Room, Mayan Villa, plunge pool - Photo by German Murillo-Echavarria 0405
Plunge Pool at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Pool, Hammock - Photo by The Haciendas
Pool with Hammock at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Rooms, Terrace with hammock - Photo by German Murillo-Echavarria 0405
Rooms Terrace at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Rooms - Photo by German Murillo-Echavarria 0405
Rooms at The Hacienda San José Cholul
Yucatan, Tixkokob, Hotel Hacienda San Jose Cholul, Logo - Photo by The Haciendas