The main street in the historic center of Mérida is Calle 60 (60th Street). However, it continues northward far beyond the old city. Today I took a long walk along that street.
I started at the little Plaza de Santa Lucía just a few steps away from my hotel.
Every Thursday night since 1965, this plaza has been the scene of a "Serenata Yucateca" (Yucatecan Serenade), a performance of traditional music and dance. A few years ago the plaza underwent a complete renovation, and beneath the "portales" (archways) there are now a variety of fine restaurants and shops.
Heading north from the plaza, interspersed among more modern commercial buildings, there are many lovely 19th century structures. Some of them are beautifully restored.
Others are sadly neglected or completely abandoned.
But along this street, as throughout the city center, work progresses to bring the historic buildings back to their former elegance.
After a few blocks you have entered the neighborhood of Santa Ana which is centered around the colonial church of the same name. It was built in 1730.
In recent years Santa Ana has gained a reputation as Mérida's "artsy" neighborhood. There are numerous art galleries along Calle 60.
Three pretty, pink houses all in a row and all beautifully maintained.
A few days ago I wrote about Paseo Montejo, the boulevard along which millionaires built their homes in the late 19th century and early 20th century. This stretch of Calle 60 runs parallel to Paseo Montejo and it would appear that an overflow of sumptuous homes spilled over onto this street.
This mansion is now a boutique hotel called "Casa Azul" (Blue House).
This mansion comes as a complete surprise. Perhaps the original owner was inspired by his Gilded Age contemporaries in the United States. The house appears to still be privately owned.
From here Calle 60 runs past the so-called Hotel Zone. Of course there are hotels throughout the city, but the big, high-rise chains such as Hyatt and Fiesta Americana are clustered here.
Beyond the hotel zone the street is a mixture of commercial and residential properties. The United States Consulate is located here. Signs make it clear that photos are not allowed, and guards and police are posted on either side of the street.
The houses here appear to be of more recent vintage. Many are built in neo-colonial style.
This house is being renovated and is for sale.
Or would you like to rent this mansion? Just be sure to get the landlord to mow the lawn which hasn't been cut for months!
Finally, there is this palatial house. (The photo shows only a portion of it!) There is no sign to indicate that it is a business or a government office. I thought that it might be the governor's mansion, but if that were the case I would expect to see guards at the entry. If it is indeed a private residence, whoever owns it must be one of the richest people in Yucatán!
Calle 60 continues on, but by this point I had walked about two miles. I decided that it was time to make the trek back to the hotel.