Merida Historical Buildings You Can’t Miss – Casa de Montejo

What captured my attention on our first visit to Merida is the architecture. European and Mexican influences have shaped this city since the 1500s. The invasion of the Spanish into the Yucatan has left its mark on Merida’s architectural landscape, shaping our experience in the city today.

La Casa de Montejo located in the main plaza, Plaza Grande, is one of many historical buildings that exhibit Spanish colonial architecture at its finest. The architect of Casa Montejo, the son of Francisco de Montejo, used this family residence to make a statement. The facade and interior is a combination of Spanish Plateresque style and Italian Gothic Renaissance architectural traditions that tells a story. With a strategic location alongside government offices and the Cathedral of San Ildefonso , the Montejo Family used their position and architectural knowledge to illustrate their power in the community.

The House the Montejo’s Built

Architectural Highlights and History of Casa de Montejo:

  • Casa De Montejo was completed in 1549. The Montejo family used the home as a personal residence until 1970.
  • ‘El Mozo’ used a Spanish Plateresque architectural style to decorate the doorway. The ornate and detailed entrance way is where the Montejo Family focuses on their story and message. Historians continue to debate whether the use of Mayan figures shown in the ornate doorway are more representative of the workers influence than that of the original design created by El Mozo.
  • The remaining areas of the structure use Italian Gothic Renaissance traditions. The use of Italian traditions was how the new Spanish settlers chose to communicate their independence from the European Spanish Monarchy.
  • It is worth noting the competing architectural styles of the Catedral San Idelfonso, Casa de Montejo and the Municipal offices.
  • Note the small wrought iron balcony above the main entrance.
  • The exterior details include busts of ‘Adelantado’, his wife and daughter as well as the Montejo family crest above the exterior windows.

The Interior of Casa de Montejo Is As Exceptional As The Exterior

El Mozo took as much time on the interior details of the Montejo residence as he did on the exterior. The interior rooms open into a large courtyard, a typical architectural style of Spanish buildings. Unlike the exterior, the interior of the house has seen many renovations over the years but some key architectural designs and details have been maintained. Look up and admire the ceilings. They are works of art in some of the rooms.
Visitors can join free daily guided tours offered at various times throughout the day. Today, Casa de Montejo is used as a exhibition space for local and national Mexican artists. The Banamex Cultural Foundation hosts various free exhibits throughout the year.

Visit Casa de Montejo in Merida – Location And Hours

The exterior of Casa de Montejo can be viewed from the main plaza (Plaza Grande) at any time during the day or evening. If you want to investigate this historical building and learn more about its architectural highlights, free tours are offered daily. The building is open to the public Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The building is closed on Mondays. Entrance and tours are free. Check out cultural exhibits on the Banamex webpage to see upcoming events.
Location – Calle 63 Plaza Grande (south side)
Free Guided Tours – Tuesday to Saturday 11 a.m., 1 p.m., p.m. Sundays at 11 a.m.
Exhibitions – the Casa de Cultura Banamex

Check out these grand hotels in Merida for your next vacation.

My Properties
Find A Place You Love