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Hacienda el Carmen Hotel & Spa

    Hacienda el Carmen Hotel & Spa
 in Ahualulco de MercadoHistory: 
    Hacienda el Carmen Hotel & Spa
 in Ahualulco de Mercado


The territory, known as Nueva Galicia during the Virreinato period, extended a bit more than 100,000 square kilometers upon the arrival of the Europeans. Towns were inhabited by diverse ethnicities and languages and included primarily the domains of Colima, Xalisco, Tonallán, Cascaná, Xochitepec, Contixpac, Aztlán, Chiametla, in addition to other, smaller estates. The Spanish called the chiefs of these indigenous territories “caciques,” a word that comes from the Caribbean. The conquest and colonization of the Jaliscan territory began at the end of 1522 with the travels of Cristobal de Olid, who explored Mazamitla and came to Tamazula without finding much resistance. However, upon reaching Tecomán, Olid had to return to Spain, which angered Hernán Cortés, who ordered Olid to return to México. In the meantime, Cortés entrusted Gonzalo de Sandoval to continue the conquest. Sandoval later founded a Spanish town in Colima in the year 1523.

The following year, a relative of Cortés, Alonso de Avalos, also arrived to the south of Jalisco. Avalos inherited from his older brother an extensive territory that went from Sayula to Atoyac to Zacoalco and Cocula to the shores of Lake Chapala. For many years, this land was known as the “Avalos Providence.” In 1529, Nuño Beltrán de Guzmán, who was the first Present of the Real Tribunal of México and an enemy of Cortés, continued the conquest of other lands to the northeast that the Spanish called “Teules-Chicimecas,” and after conquering what was known as “Old Spain” for a short period. Guzmán was ordered to call it New Reign of Galicia and the capitol was named Compostela.

During this period of conquest occurred the first occupation of the region where the Hacienda El Carmen lies, previously known as Hacienda Santa María de Miraflores. In 1530, Nuño de Guzmán departed from Tonalá and headed for the town of Tala. The following day, he walked to the providence and town of Etzatlán to make it part of his territory. He walked four leagues through a very fertile valley full of springs and water and arrived at Etzatlan and its lake, which would later become Magdalena Lake. On Thursday, April 5, 1530, he decided to rest there for four months. But as his army consisted of 400 Spanish and almost 20,000 allied indigenous tribes (Mexicas, Tlaxcaltecas, and Tarascos) they consumed all the provisions that were administered. He then called upon the prisoners, as was the custom, and requested that they, along with the army, attack the lake area and leave only the city of Etzatlán. The citizens left this town after the army stayed to retire. The town also served as a post for the monks of San Francisco.

Early information about the Hacienda Santa María de Miraflores refers to the year 1569, in which Merodio de Velasco bought the lands from Beatriz de Castro, who had just gained possession in that same year. In 1574, Velasco sold to Gabriel de Aguila, whose descendants continued to work the land until 1693. Afterwards, the hacienda was owned by Doña Francisca Figueroa Viuda de Aguila, who along with her second husband Don Juan González, willed the hacienda to the order of the barefooted Carmelitas. With the benefits provided by the farming done at the hacienda, they founded the Convent of Carmen in Guadalajara. There are documents that refer to it as the highest earning livestock hacienda, half located in the hills of Tequila and the other half the hills of Ameca (approximately 64,000 acres). Until 1856, the inhabitants of Carmen cared for the lands with the backing of Juárez Decree.

In 1860, the lands were awarded to General Florentino Cuervo. Upon his death, his widow, Doña Nicolasa Ramírez I, sold to Don Luciano Gómez and his brothers Matías, Leon, and Jerónimo in 1883. In his will, Don Luciano Gómez left the hacienda to Francisco L. Corcuera Gómez and Luis L. Corcuera Gómez. Upon Francisco’s death, he left it wholly to his brother Luis. It was at this time that the lands of the hacienda were repartitioned into the public lands of El Carmen, Chapulimita, La Peña, San Ignacio, El Amarillo, and other pueblos, leaving only the small property that has been maintained until this very day. From the Corcuera family, the hacienda passed to the Buenrostro family, Fam. González Albuerna, who later passed it on to Don Pablo Serrano Estrada. From here it was sold to Serrano’s son-in-law Don Joaquín Baeza del Monte, the current owner.

The initial work for the Colonial-style Hacienda el Carmen Hotel & Spa began in 1722 and was completed five years later. A second, Neoclassical section of the hacienda was completed at the end of the 19th century. The building materials used were commonly found in the area – adobe, brick, quarried stone, and rocks. Other materials, such as lumber from mesquite, pine, and cedar trees came from the hills of Tequila and Ameca. The metalwork was completed by artisans from the Lagos de Moreno area, and the clay and ceramic tiled flooring was all laid by hand.

The hacienda’s furniture is the result of a collection that spans many ages, styles, and origins. The woodwork is fine and rustic; much of it is fine woodworking and unique ironwork. Paintings by unknown artists from the Colonial age and decorative watercolors of distinct dimensions and styles cover the walls. Sculptures of quarried rock date back to the 18th and 19th centuries. The diverse decorative objects found in the hacienda were almost all acquired in México. Many European candles date back to the end of the 19th century. There are pre-Hispanic pieces native to the area. Many of the curtains and bedcovers were made by hand.

Today, the hacienda still produces crops and goods for consumption on the hacienda grounds, including sugar cane, corn, wheat, vegetables, and some citrus orchards.

Hacienda El Carmen Hotel & Spa, a member of Historic Hotels Worldwide since 2016, dates back to the 1722.


International Numbers

Austria 08000706176
Belgium 080081830
France 805542721
Germany 8007241217
Ireland 1800995320
Italy 800979444
Netherlands 08000200956
Norway 80054304
Spain 900814719
Switzerland 0800001798
UK 8009179622
Book by Phone: +1 866 670 3764
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