Cheapest Destinations Blog is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Winging it in Zihuatanejo

A while back I wrote a column for Tripso about how I was taking my family on vacation in Mexico without having any hotel reservations. Some readers reacted like I was ready to be put into a padded room for having such a craaaaazzzy idea, so I just did a follow up on how it all went. Take your pick of reading it on MSNBC (No reservations about no reservations) or on the less cluttered travel site Tripso.

Zihuatanejo hotel view

Most people that read this Cheapest Destinations blog won’t be surprised about the outcome. Things went fine. We got rooms we liked and we saved a nice chunk of change by doing things on the fly rather than in advance – about 40 Mexican beers worth of savings in my estimation. The article links to a page of photos that shows the views from our rooms in Mexico. I was in one week family vacation mode in terms of budgeting, so we weren’t staying in cheapo places. Still, for $79 to $102 a night, I think we made out like bandits.

For that $102 we got the walk-in, off-season rate at the excellent Brisas del Mar. I’m talking a big whirlpool on the spacious deck, nice toiletries in the bathroom, twice-daily maid service, two bars, a billiards table, a really nice pool, and right on the beach. Free WiFi even–a real rarity at a Mexican beach resort.

Zihuatanejo is hard to pronounce and even harder to find on a map. That means it’s a mellow, nice place to stay that’s as popular with locals as it is with foreigners – unlike nearby Ixtapa, which is all bland high-rise hotels. The restaurants aren’t all that cheap though, despite that. I’ve notice that Mexican families who may normally be quite frugal will open the wallet wide when they sit down at a seafood restaurant. The food keeps coming, the beers keep flowing, and everyone has a grand time, the total tally on the bill be damned. So we had to join the party and just chow.

Spread the love


Thursday 28th of August 2008

The Shawshank Redemption place, that's Zihuatanejo, though no part of the movie was ever filmed here. But it sure sent us a lot of tourists! Come check us out!


Wednesday 27th of August 2008

The 'Shawshank Redemption' place?

Annette from

Tuesday 27th of November 2007

Hey! Great blog. Good to see someone's personal take and review on this hotel, which people may seem weary of due to the affordable rates.


Tuesday 20th of November 2007

I absolutely love this hotel. The best deal in Zihuatanejo. Beautiful architecture, great view and the friendliest people. I was hoping my little secret spot wouldn't get out!