71.6 F
Monday, January 24, 2022

Bonampak: Mérida’s newest hot spot is a feast for the eyes

Latest headlines

A stunning 5,425 new COVID cases in a week

Residents make use of a hand-washing station installed in the Centro. Photo: Artur Widak / NurPhoto via Getty Images

Booster shots arrive for Mérida residents between 40-59

Booster shots for Mérida residents in their 40s and 50s arrived Friday. Photo: Courtesy A military plane with...

Mexico celebrates International Mariachi Day

Mariachis in Mexico and around the world celebrate International Mariachi Day observed every Jan 21. 

Marines to take over security at Mérida and Cancún airports

Mexico's Marines will be taking control of seven airports across the country, with  Mérida and Cancún among them. 
Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
We can all use a drink from time to time, but if you are heading out don’t forget to bring your facemask. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Mérida’s most Instagram-worthy restaurant has opened its doors. 

Bonampak, which opened just last week one block south of Santa Ana park, offers patrons plenty of choices of beers, cocktails, and botanas — much like any other bar in Mérida.

(Editor’s note: On Sunday, three days after this story was posted, state authorities closed Bonampak after finding they violated crowd capacity rules. We don’t know when they will re-open.)

Where Bonampak really shines is in its decor. Large murals featuring several of Mexico’s most beloved icons cover every square inch of the space.

Mural of Mexican actress María Félix and one of her most famous quotes which translate to “It is better to arrive late than to show up looking ugly.” Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Yucatecan actors, comedians, and musicians are of course also well represented and include the likes of Armando Manzanero and Héctor Herrera Álvarez, better known as Cholo.

Cholo was well known and much loved in Yucatán for his irreverent comedy, which often poked fun at social mores. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

All chairs and stools are variations on brightly colored Acapulco style décor, which fits great with Bonampak’s fun and upbeat aesthetic.

Acapulco-style stools in front of a mural of Pedro Infante, the most famous of Mexicos golden-age of cinema performers. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Also getting a nod is Mexico’s most famous rock and roll export, the guitar virtuoso Carlos Santana.

All of the murals at Bonampak are painted in bright colors and often stretch from floor to ceiling. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

But it’s not all about celebrities, as several walls are dedicated to scenes of everyday life in Yucatán, as well as wildlife and myths.

In Yucatán’s folklore, the Xtabay is a supernatural femme fatale who preys upon men, using her mystically enhanced beauty. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Though Bonampak is fairly large, seating is limited as tables are spread out under health protocols.

Outside seating areas are available towards the back of the bar and on the second-floor patio. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Though the murals share a similar aesthetic, they are in fact the work of 30 different artists working together in the Bonampak urban art collective.

Mural of Vicente Fernández, arguably Mexico’s most famous rancheras musician of all time. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

The name of the artist collective and the bar itself is inspired by the famous murals found at the Mayan archaeological site of the same name, Bonampak.

Prices at Bonampak are comparable to similar bars like La Negrita or El Cardenal. Domestic beers start at 35 pesos while artisanal and microbrews cost around 75 pesos. Cocktails start at 80 pesos. They also have a fairly good selection of mezcal and tequila.

I was told by my lovely girlfriend Yesica that the cocktails were quite nice, I may have to go back to make sure for myself. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Complimentary snacks include small plates of beans, tamales, tostadas, and dzikilpak (squash seed dip).

As per usual, the more rounds of drinks you order, the more botanas you can expect to show up at your table. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

If the free-for-the-customer botanas are not enough to fill you up, they also have a la carte options including Yucatecan staples like panuchos, salbutes, and sopa de lima. Hamburgers, chicken wings, French fries, empanadas, and pizzas are also available. The chicken tenders were particularly good.

Bonampak also offers pub fare platters starting at around 250 pesos which are easy enough for 2 to 3 people. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Bonampak is in Mérida’s Centro, on the corner of Calle 60 and 49, in the space previously occupied by Café Chocolate, Avocado vegetarian restaurant, and Alma Calma.

- Advertisement -

Subscribe Now!

More articles

New Frontier Airlines route to connect Cancún with Houston

Citing an increase in demand, Frontier Airlines has announced a new flight between Houston and Cancún.

Yucatán’s muralism boom —  an explosion of color, tradition and meaning

Yucatán’s history of muralism famously dates all the way back to the elaborate frescoes of the ancient Maya.

Students at Mérida’s private Catholic Universities caught trading thousands of explicit photos of their classmates

Numerous students at Mérida’s Anáuac Mayab University are reportedly active in a “secret” chat group to trade intimate photos of classmates, as well as engage in cyberbullying. 

New benches at ancient archaeological site anger Izamal residents

Modern slab benches detract from an ancient ruin at Izamal, neighbors say. Photo: Courtesy Modern-looking benches installed at...

Being a good neighbor to Yucatán’s roof cats and street dogs

Illustration: Juan Pablo Quintal García Cats replaced people as my friends soon after quarantine 2020 began. 

What my rescue dogs taught me

I thought I knew a lot about dogs until I took in two rescues. I was wrong....

Bus full of construction workers catches fire in Mérida’s north

A bus went up in flames just before 8 this morning in Mérida’s Francisco de Montejo neighborhood.

Mérida’s new surveillance center now has eyes on over 6,700 cameras

Yucatán's government has opened a new remote surveillance center to oversee the state's thousands of active security cameras. 

600 acres expropriated in Quintana Roo for new Mayan Train route

Mexico has seized 198 lots of land in Quintana Roo along phase 5 of the Mayan Train's path.

Omicron strain now dominant in Yucatán

The Omicron variant of COVID-19 now appears to be the most common form of the virus in Yucatán.