Casita del Maguey
13 Nov 2018     First in set     Similar photos    SMA, Mexico 
Casita del Maguey    
13 Nov 2018     SMA, Mexico     First in set     Similar photos 
 
 
 
 

Our house, Casita del Maguey1, is one of two houses squeezed onto a narrow city block on Calzada de la Presa2 in San Miguel de Allende. The architects, Cathi and Steven House, live nearby and use the casitas as rental property and as an exhibit for architecture students. In fact, shortly after we arrived a class of Cal Poly architecture students came for a visit. The Houses are friendly and helpful, and we've run into them numerous times in town, such as at last night's address by president Fox.

Our one bedroom, one and a half bath casita is a visual treat, with tall ceilings, walls of glass, cantilevered walkways, multiple decks, comfortable modern furniture, and tasteful colors and art. It has in-floor heat plus whole-house potable water so you can drink water from any tap. It shares a small pool with the slightly larger casita next door. The location is perfect, a short walk to el centro but with none of its weekend nightlife. The blocks-long maze of the Mercado de Artesania, resembling Istanbul's Grand Bazaar, is just steps away.

Cathi and Steven designed the house to be light and airy and to feel more spacious than it really is. Interesting architectural details abound. It is a feast for the eyes as well as being a comfortable place to hang out while visiting SMA.

The house has downsides. This is not a place for those who like privacy. Being so open inside, you can't, say, listen to music in the living room and have someone sleeping in the bedroom. The house has so many lights and so many light switches that I find myself going up and down the stairs searching for the switch that controls that last light left on before going to bed.

But the biggest problem is the house seems to be unheated3. I figure the in-floor heat, first floor only, isn't up to the task. The house design and construction --- large interior spaces, single-pane glass walls and skylights that run the length of the house, gaps around the exterior doors --- don't match its abilities. Outside it's just above freezing, inside we are wearing long johns, winter coats, and wool hats.

But it sure is pretty.

 

1San Miguel House Rentals

2Calzada de la Presa changes its name almost block by block, to Chorro, Barranca, Murllo, and Nuez.

3An exaggeration, but if there's any forecast of cold be sure to bring warm clothes. It's worth it, though.

 
 
 
 
Entryway 
 
 
 
Entryway 
 
 
 
Entryway 
 
 
Stairs to rooftop deck 
 
 
 
Stairs to rooftop deck 
 
 
 
Stairs to rooftop deck 
 
 
Stairs 
 
 
 
Stairs 
 
 
 
Stairs 
 
 
Kitchen and garden 
 
 
 
Kitchen and garden 
 
 
 
Kitchen and garden 
 
 
Front garden 
 
 
 
Front garden 
 
 
 
Front garden 
 
 
Casita living room 
 
 
 
Casita living room 
 
 
 
Casita living room 
 
 
Bridge 
 
 
 
Bridge 
 
 
 
Bridge 
 
 
Floating ceiling +
 
 
 
Floating ceiling +
 
 
 
Floating ceiling +
 
 
Stairs and ceiling 
 
 
 
Stairs and ceiling 
 
 
 
Stairs and ceiling 
 
 
Glass shower enclosure 
 
 
 
Glass shower enclosure 
 
 
 
Glass shower enclosure 
 
 
Bedroom floor and kitchen 
 
 
 
Bedroom floor and kitchen 
 
 
 
Bedroom floor and kitchen 
 
 
Rooftop deck 
 
 
 
Rooftop deck 
 
 
 
Rooftop deck 
 
 
Shadows +
 
 
 
Shadows +
 
 
 
Shadows +
 
 
Living room 
Looking out the living room you see the second casita. To the left of it is a walkway to the street.
 
 
 
Living room 
Looking out the living room you see the second casita. To the left of it is a walkway to the street.
 
 
 
Living room 
Looking out the living room you see the second casita. To the left of it is a walkway to the street.