On my way to the depths of Mexico’s Copper Canyon, I detoured into the high pine forests atop the rim of Urique Canyon to see Cabanas San Isidro Lodge. I was not expecting much; this is rough terrain, where putty-colored dust coats everything in sight until summer rains arrive, and development of any kind is almost non-existent. With the nearest furniture store hours away, I assumed the lodge would be rustic at best, but bare bones furnishings would not have surprised me.
Imagine my astonishment when I stepped into the main lodge and dining room and discovered tongue-in-groove wooden ceilings, authentic Mexican tile work, decorative brick work, linen tablecloths, and a gorgeous hand-painted mural of the canyon covering one whole wall. The adjacent sitting room was equally impressive, as was the sunken bar, featuring wood stove for chilly nights, hand-hewn wood furniture, and traditional native instruments used as decorative touches.
Guest rooms in lodge buildings and individual cabanas featured hand-painted murals and windows crafted from multi-colored bottles that suffused the rooms with warm light, and were furnished with large beds and oversize pillows. Deeper into the grounds a two story “Meditation Cabin” was decorated and furnished in the same exquisite manner. Perched on the rim of a canyon, with views of high pine mountains and valleys, these two cabins offer the perfect spot for watching the sun descend and the stars emerge each night.
Accommodations at Cabanas San Isidro Lodge are priced at $75 per night and include three delicious meals per day, as well as transportation to and from the El Chepe train station. For an additional fee, the two brothers who own the Lodge can also arrange custom tours to historic Cerocahui, down into Urique Canyon, or back-country trail rides and trekking. For reservations, either phone +52 01-635-456-5257 or contact the owners through their website, but keep in mind that there is no Internet at the property, and the owners are only able to get emails once or twice a week, so if you don’t hear back right away, be patient. San Isidro Lodge is an obvious labor of love for the owners and it is definitely worth the wait.