Budget

Best Winter Travel Deals

by Brook Wilkinson

MEXICO

Rule of thumb: Where the dollar is strong, look for hotels that list rates in the local currency.

Why here?: The dollar is at its all-time high against the Mexican peso. Provided you choose your hotel wisely, you'll pay less than ever before.

Best bang for your buck: Since most resorts charge Americans in dollars, you don't benefit from the favorable exchange rate. The Casa de Sierra Nevada (view slideshow) in San Miguel de Allende lists rates in pesos: 3,175 for a deluxe room, which would have cost you $320 as recently as August but comes to only $235 now. (You'll save even more from Sunday through Thursday, when that same room goes for $217.) This Orient-Express property takes up five colonial mansions near the city's main plaza, with fountains and gardens hidden throughout. Every Tuesday, the chef offers a two-hour market tour and a cooking class for 600 pesos, or just $45. The cheap peso makes the dollar go farther in restaurants, too, of course. La Capilla, a moody, romantic former chapel, is the fanciest place in town, and now more reasonably priced.

Bonus: You'll also find the dollar climbing against local currency in Brazil and Argentina. Latin America has never looked so good.

Casa de Sierra Nevada
Tel: 800 701 1561

La Capilla
Tel: 52 415 152 0698

NEXT: Downtime at the beach >

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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