Thirteen budget-friendly rooms fringe a courtyard strewn with art and artifacts, each individually decorated to reflect this hotel's bohemian sensibility. After navigating the Trojan horse out front, guests enter through a lobby/curio shop into a courtyard strung with a staggering array of disparate objects: shells, whale bones, hubcaps, bottles, bullfighting posters, vintage bicycles, old tools. The focal point of the courtyard art museum—which features four generations of found objects and family heirlooms—is the body of the 1916 Model T the original owners drove down from San Antonio, Texas, with a stuffed monkey in the front seat. Guests can enjoy complimentary tequila shots each evening.
Murals reflect individual room themes, from Don Quixote scenes to Baja style cave paintings. But art isn’t narrowly defined here. In some rooms, ornate frames are painted around portraits brushed directly onto the wall, or hubcaps are affixed to bed stands to make them appear car-like. Lighting is dim, and the air-conditioning is noisy, but everything works.
All room rates are individually negotiated. Locals typically pay about $35 a night, so that’s a good initial bid.
There are no frills in Yeneka’s bathrooms. They’re small but clean, and the only fixture save sink, toilet, and shower is a small wall-mounted soap dish. Soap is included.
If the trailer mounted horse sculpture doesn’t grab your attention, the canopied sidewalk entrance with its hand-painted lettering should do the trick. The lobby is simply a narrow foyer, about half of which is given over to an arts and crafts workshop. A small counter is reserved for check-ins.
A refrigerated cooler is stocked with sodas and bottled water, and there is a collection of books and magazines for on-site reading material.
Continental breakfasts are laid out each morning in the courtyard, with coffee, fresh fruit, and assorted baked goods.
There is no on-site bar at Hotel Yeneka, but staff often pour out a couple of complimentary tequila shots for those lounging in the courtyard area between 9 p.m. and 11 p.m.
Set in the heart of La Paz’s historic city center, Yeneka is a short walk from both the malecón and the city’s downtown shops, restaurants, and museums. A rental car is necessary to reach gorgeous local beaches like Balandra and El Tecolote.
Walk three blocks northeast on Calle Madero and you’ll end up at La Paz’s best restaurant, Las Tres Virgenes. Walk two blocks southwest on Calle Madero and you’ll run into Tacos Hermanos González, a stand renowned for its delicious and affordable tacos.
Nearby watering holes of note include The Beer Box (5-minutes away on Calle Independencia) , a haven for Baja produced craft beers, and La Miserable (7-minute walk to Belisario Dominguez), a mezcaleria that also features eclectic music and vintage décor.
WHY WE LIKE IT
There are no other hotels like Hotel Arte Museo Yeneka. The place is completely sui generis, from its “found art” aesthetic to its negotiated room rates. Centrally located and super cheap, this is the go-to accommodation option for adventurous, value-oriented travelers.