The most exclusive accommodation in Mexico’s famous tequila-growing region happens to be right next to the source of the world’s most recognizable tequila brand. La Casona opened in January 2017 on the Hacienda Patrón property, located in a picturesque Highlands town called Atotonilco el Alto. This elegant, intimate property is invite-only for people in the industry.
The sprawling, impeccably manicured grounds of Hacienda Patrón are home to the brand’s distillery buildings, its liqueur facility, community gardens, environmental areas, and, of course, the guesthouse.
Much like the Patrón brand itself, La Casona celebrates everything that makes the state of Jalisco great, in an ultra-luxury, perfectionist's way. The building is made out of cantera stone, marble and onyx, like many traditional Jalisco haciendas. It took 16 local craftsmen nine months to hand-carve the stones for the eye-catching arches that line the property’s corridors and frame the courtyard fountain. The doors and windows were expertly hand-made. All in all, around 1.5 million bricks were used to make the walls and archways.
Just as every ribbon on every bottle of Patrón is hand-tied and triple checked next door, La Casona celebrates every chance to make an impression. The décor, hand-selected from different destinations, is an interesting blend of cultures, in keeping with hacienda tradition when wealthy families would collect furniture from their travels. The architecture has clever nods to Mexican, Spanish, French and Italian design.
At the root of it all ...
Ultimately, it all comes back to tequila. A Guadalajara artist created the stunning glass and iron chandelier that hangs in the 45-foot-tall lobby, complete with Patrón’s signature bees. The paintings in La Casona’s four master suites and 16 guest rooms depict scenes with traditional Mexican charros.
Every single Patrón product in the world comes from this property. With more than 1,700 employees, Patrón is ingrained in the community. In addition to being one of the most scenic distilleries in Jalisco, Hacienda Patrón has a distinctly family feel. The Spanish Colonial building has its own cottage, kitchen, dining rooms, auditorium, and art installations, as well as a special chapel dedicated to the Virgin of Guadalupe, open to all employees.
As its name suggests, La Casona has the feel of a home. Sure, most houses don’t have their own bar and full-service restaurant, but La Casona has a way of bringing everyone together. Maybe it’s the mariachis in Mariachi Moya, who let loose around the fire pit at night with their finely tuned and amusing versions of everything from traditional Mexican songs to Motown classics.
Maybe it’s the fact that tequila is in the air (literally: the agave ovens are only steps away). Or maybe it’s the fact that, as any tequila master who waxes poetic about the spirit will tell you, tequila has a way of magnifying the emotions that are already lurking deep down inside you. They call it a truth serum for a reason. If you should find, as many guests do, that living your truth involves singing karaoke at the top of your lungs until 1 a.m., La Casona has the perfect solution: the property’s private Copper Bar turns into a karaoke room, with any song imaginable queued up, and a couple tequila cocktails to make you sound better.
Drinking at the home of Patrón
The bar program at the home of Patrón takes a direct approach to its cocktails, keeping its ingredients simple so the different types of tequila can shine. Because tequila is ultimately a sipping spirit, Copper Bar’s cocktails use ingredients as fresh accents for its many varieties (including limited edition Patrón Cask Collection Sherry Añejo and Patrón 5 Años). This makes for strong, tequila-forward drinks that make it easier to appreciate different blends.
There are some tequila twists on classics, like the Platinum Club Martini (Gran Patrón Platinum, blanc vermouth, and a slice of cucumber) or the Hacienda Paloma, (Patrón Reposado, fresh grapefruits, limes, and sparkling water) or the Piedra Old Fashioned (Gran Patrón Piedra, Demerara sugar, and lavender bitters).
The real question on everyone’s mind at La Casona, however, is this: How does Patrón make its mark on the classic margarita? In a playground full of details, the answer is surprising in its simplicity: Patrón Silver, Patrón Citrónge, and fresh lime, only.