I could never pinpoint words to describe Mexico City because it truly encompasses every trait. It's a song and a dance, an abstract painting, and the best meal I ever had. Something drew me in instantly. The spirit of this city is electrifying and I feel as though I could return many times and still not witness all of it's colorful corners.
This trip came into my life by happenstance for a reason that's so good, I can't even comprehend it. The team behind Richer Poorer gathered up an insane group of creatives: photographers, filmmakers, artists, writers, designers and more. The premise of this journey was to recognize the honest hustle in go getters alike; not only the individuals on the trip, but the souls we came into contact with along the way. Our itinerary was conducted by Katalina Mayorga, founder of El Camino Travel. I had been following this wanderlust brand for a while and what makes it so special is the fact that everything is curated so you feel like a traveler witnessing the culture and experiences that otherwise might go unseen. Not to mention this particular group was hilarious, incredibly talented, and loved food as much as I do.
Our crew resided in the neighborhood of Roma at Hotel Carlota. The common area is a beautiful open space in the middle of the building where the pool, restaurant, and bar were our meeting spots. The rooms are thoughtfully designed and coincide with every part of the hotel perfectly.
We all arrived throughout the late afternoon to the hotel on our first day and then headed to dinner after getting settled in. This meal was incredible. We were taken to a historic colonial mansion that had been turned into an art gallery. In collaboration with Cool Hunter MX and Hidden Kitchen, we enjoyed a 4 course candle lit dinner. Will I ever say that sentence again?!
On the menu was a Mexican twist on American classics created by Chef Gerardo Aguilar. From top to bottom: Avocado Pizza, Maiz & Cheese, and Pastor Fish Tacos. The table was cleared and out came multiple piñatas and miniature hammers. I'm still on the hunt for said tiny hammers of my own, as they fit perfectly in my hands.
Our fist full day was packed with dynamic studio visits. We started out at the Ambulante Film Festivial headquarters, a non profit organization that highlights independent documentaries, bringing cultural awareness to the masses. We had the chance to tour their space and view some incredible pieces.
Before the next studio visit, we roamed around the Soumaya Museum taking in every curve and detail. It's one of those structures you could take a million pictures of and no two would be alike. Below is what it looked like on the inside, ever so fresh.
Next stop was the Carla Ferenandez exhibit inside Museo Jumex. Much more than a fashion brand, her multifunctional and timeless pieces had us looking twice. Everything is handmade and utterly brilliant. This was so inspiring in the color and shape spectrum. If I had the urge to make new paintings before, this really got me thinking.
We awoke on the third day and skipped breakfast because the plan was to embark on an epic street food tour guided by Jason of Club Tango Hambre. His knowledge was pure gold and when it comes to incredible local vendors, he knows whats up.
Every stop was special but when we hit up the indoor market that's where it got real. We wandered the halls and eventually were presented with the option of trying a variety of bugs. Do people still say yolo? I tried crickets which is much more common, then a dried worm that literally tasted like a french fry, and lastly, a TINY beetle. I instinctually didn't think it would be that big of a deal but I was wrong. Don't worry, I got it all on video and you will soon witness said events starring all the insects. Then, I promptly got a mango aqua fresca and spiked it with tequila.
This woman was selling her fresh molé and it tasted like sweet, nutty heaven.
After the tour, we went in different directions and I ended up at Carla Fernandez in Roma with a few other ladies. The exhibit was so cool in its own way, but the free standing store made me feel everything. I want to paint my bedroom black and acquire all the cacti.
A solid pool sesh before dinner wherein I was on a good one. I'm talking pre buzzed hyper.
Oh this meal. I loved the atmosphere at Merotoro. We had Jason accompany us on this evening and he ordered all the goods. It almost tasted better when I had no idea what was coming and the fish was the winner.
Our last day was quite possibly one of my favorites. It was all about architecture and we started out touring the UNAM where in over 300,000 students attend (WHAT) and it's riddled with stunning murals and pieces of art throughout. We also visited homes by the master architect and designer Luis Barragan. That portion of the day gets its own post.
It was back to the pool for one last dip that afternoon. I got a marg. How dare I not.
Our last supper was sweet and intimate. Fonda Fina was recognized in The New York Times as the most exciting place to eat in Mexico City. The modern and eccentric menu was designed by chef Jorge Vallejo and executed by Juan Cabrera. Everything from the way the courses flowed together to the warm interior design and tabletops made for a perfect last hurrah.
We walked home through the city after dinner and stopped to take it all in. I'm feeling so lucky to have been a part of this trip and have never experienced anything like it. A huge thank you to Richer Poorer and El Camino for inviting me (and accepting my pool/uber shenanigans). There's nothing like meeting an entire group of strangers and leaving feeling like you're family.