Leon Journals

Leather All Over You

A March 2005 trip to Leon by JesusW

Cathedral and Downtown Area Photo, Leon, Mexico More Photos
Quote: If you are thinking of leather, this is your city, but not as a biker or sadomasochist. Leon is the leather capital of Mexico. Here you can find excellent shoes, boots, belts, jackets, etc.

Leather All Over You

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Quote:
Shoe Capital of Mexico Also, anything related to leather is cheaper and easier to get here. The quality is very good, but you have to know a little bit about the business to get the best of it. There are five big malls with all the usual upscale stores. But also, there are specialty malls and markets, some dedicated to shoes and others to leather products. This is a business city, so there are not as many interesting places to visit as in the capital city of Guanajuato, with all the colonial architecture. The downtown area is picturesque around the main square and the cathedral, but besides that, your visits would be short... Unless you are attracted to the Food Market where...Read More
Quote:
This is a two-star hotel with the looks of a three-star.

There is a small business center with Internet conectivity, an outdoor pool and garden, in-house restaurant, etc., but it lacks the level of service and maintenance.

The staff is friendly but not as efficient as it should be, as the hotel targets business clientele.

If you are bringing your car, then always leave it to the doorman--the walk to the parking lot is a looooooong one.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on March 19, 2005

Hotel San Francisco
Blvd. López Mateos 2715 Ote.
Leon, Mexico
(477) 771-4450

Il Pastificio / La Terraza.

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Quote:
We found this excellent restaurant after asking a local friend about a good pizza place.The best way to get there is by taxi--just tell the driver the name of the street, as the restaurant is not widely known. The street is perpendicular to Lopez Mateos Boulevard near the "Gran Plaza" Mall.When we finally arrived (got lost two times), what we saw was a small mini-mall with an Italian furniture shop, dry cleaning place, and a smallish restaurant. The Pastificio is a pasta shop, and the Terraza is actually the restaurant; they share the same area. In the pasta shop, you can get uncooked fettuccini, spaghetti, canelloni, etc., plus some rich cakes and pastries.I was a l...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 19, 2005

Il Pastificio / La Terraza.
Agua Azul Street
Leon, Mexico

Pizza Lupillos

Restaurant

Quote:
Don't even try it. Stay far away from it, as it is far worse than Domino’s. Normally I would try to help the small restaurants, but in this case, they are hopeless, and it would be better to see them gone. I was working at a big gig in the Poliforum and we were very hungry, so one of the guys went out to buy pizzas and found Lupillo's just in front of the venue. He came back with eight different pizzas. I was hungry and got to eat four slices, but some of my coworkers decided it was enough with one, as they were rubbery, tasteless, and not worth eating. The cheese is something I keep wondering about, as the colour is about right, but the flavor was missing and the texture was weird. Out of...Read More

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on March 19, 2005

Pizza Lupillos
5 de Mayo St. # 129
Leon, Mexico
(4777) 160-518

Antares

Restaurant

Quote:
The place is superb for its food and service. You will find excellent beef and seafood options, the specialty of the house being the grilled ones, but all of them nicely prepared. This restaurant is convenientely located in the middle of the road between the airport and the downtown area, so you won't get any trouble finding it or wading through traffic to get there as it sits on the main avenue of this town. If you happen to be on the newest part of town--Campestre--you can resort to a branch inside the Plaza Mayor Mall. I haven't tried it, but I won't fear, as this is the nicest mall in Leon. Service is excelent the capitain would take care of you and the waiters are all fast an...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 19, 2005

Antares
Blvd. A. López Mateos 2504 Ote.
Leon, Mexico
(477) 711-0090

Vip's Express

Restaurant

Quote:
Vip's is a nationwide chain of convenient restaurants. For comparison, you can think of a Denny's, but with more Mexican dishes. The food is average, nothing to write home about. I do recommend it to foreigners that are cautious of the hygiene and handling of the food while in Mexico. You will get a clean and "artificial" atmosphere in every restaurant of this chain. Even the bathrooms are nice by American standards, so you can use them with confidence. Here you can find everything, from chicken soup to salads, from Arrachera steak to enchiladas or from hamburgers to tacos de cochinita. The variety is ample, but the flavour is not genuine Mexican. For desserts there are several kin...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 22, 2005

Vip's Express
1902 Blvd. Lopez Mateos and Francisco Villa
Leon, Mexico

El Braserio

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Quote:
This a Mexican restaurant where they make the salsas at the table--they would bring a large "molcajete", a huge stone mortar, which is the low-tech version of a blender, and the salsas taste much better this way. The capitan D' would bring the molcajete along with a little cart containing all the ingredients to make your salsa the very way you want it: more chile, less onion, more tomato, more garlic, etc. Is the only place where I have seen such a thing. In other restaurants, they will just offer you several salsas to choose from. Here they take that extra step forward, and the servings are huge. The menu is quite varied and offers you some non-Mexican dishes like pasta, but that's okay be...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 4, 2005

El Braserio
Blvd. Lopez Mateos # 1501 Bis ORIENTE
Leon, Mexico
(477) 763-3100

Mercado Estrella

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Quote:
In Mexico, the cheapest and tastiest way to eat around is to find the local market. There you will find real authentic Mexican food (nothing to do with Taco Bell) freshly prepared every day. Mercado Estrella is not too far from the main square in Leon, just 3 blocks to the west along Belisario Domingues. The best time to visit is for breakfast. If you arrive in the afternoon, there is a big chance that most of the good items will be long gone and the best stands without any leftovers. In the market, you will find the usual fruit and vegetables stands, but they would be really fresh and cheap. In between fruit and groceries, there are the food stands and small restaurants that sell t...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 20, 2005

Mercado Estrella
Avenida Miguel Aleman and Belisario Dominguez
Leon, Mexico

Italian Coffee Company

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Quote:
For you Starbucks addicts, there are many other alternatives that have more flavor and are of a better quality and cheaper. One of these is The Italian Coffe Company. Despite the name (the franchise headquarters are located in Puebla), you will find excellent Mexican coffee in different varieties and presentations: high Chiapas infusion, Veracruz lowlands, Italian blends, hot cappuccinos, frappuccinos, different kind of teas, etc., plus the more international varieties, like Colombian coffee and the expensive overseas ones. What I love best about this chain is that all the cakes are wonderful. I had a hard (I mean really hard) time choosing every time I was there (I made several work visi...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 20, 2005

Italian Coffee Company
Plaza Mayor Mall
Leon, Mexico
(477) 613-0481

Rincon Gaucho

Restaurant

Quote:
Not too far from the Poliforum (800 meters), there is this excellent Argentinian food place. We were working late at Poliforum, but a local friend recomended us this place, so we called in advance to ask the closing time. We barely made it, but they offered to stay open just for us, as this was our last night in town and we wanted to celebrate. They have a great selection of wines and other spirits to go along the great meat they serve. We were a group of nine and shared a couple bottles of great red wine and ordered some "snacks" in preparation to the main dish. We started with empanadas just to entertain our tummies and also a salad and some fried cheese, all of them were excellent but in small ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 17, 2005

Rincon Gaucho
Prol. Calzada de los Heroes and Pampas Street
Leon, Mexico
+52 (477) 713 2645

Explora Science Center

Attraction | "Centro Explora"

Quote:
This is a children's museum where they can interact with all the science and technology displays. There is also an IMAX theater.

The museum is located in the middle of a great park with lots of room for children to play to their hearts' content. Around the park are real helicopters, railroad engines, fire trucks, airplanes, etc.

Their website is Explora Leon

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 19, 2005

Explora Science Center
Boulevard Francisco Villa # 202, Next To The Poliforum
Leon, Mexico

Cathedral and Downtown Area

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Cathedral and Downtown Area Photo, Leon, Mexico
Quote:
As you read in the introduction of this journal, León is a business city. Hey, it's bigger than the state capital, Guanajuato, something not usual in Mexico. Being devoted to business, the city has no big attractions beyond the central area, where you get the typical food, markets, and buildings. The main street in León is Boulevard Lopez Mateos, which begins at the official entrance in the east of the city, marked by a steel bridge called Puente del Milenio (Millennium Bridge) with a monument on the side. The airport is 20km from it. It heads into the west, and after passing on the side of the downtown area, it turns northwest into the expensive neighbourhood of El Campestre, where the nic...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 4, 2005

Cathedral and Downtown Area
Downtown
Leon, Mexico

Leather shopping, but not that kinky

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Quote:
In Mexico, this is the most reputable city to buy leather, mainly shoes, but you can get any item you are looking for (sexual toys would be more difficult to get, but surely somebody will sell those also). Zona Piel is the local name for the leather shops. Lucky for you, it's located around the bus station, making things so easy that maybe you won't need to book a hotel room, unless you are having a difficult time choosing among all the little and big shops. The area covers about 5 by 8 blocks, with the bus station almost in the middle. Shops in the area range from small ones, with the artisan personally taking care of your wishes, to huge factories where they won't even blink a lit...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 20, 2005

Leather shopping, but not that kinky
Zona Piel (Leather Zone)
Leon, Mexico