Living in San Miguel de Allende: Neighborhoods

Real estate Guanajuato: In San Miguel de Allende some of these neighborhoods have security guards.


Centro Historico

As the name suggests, Centro Historico is the heart of old San Miguel. Many of the buildings in this part of town are from the 16th and 17th Century, with thick walls, courtyards, and fountains. The historic Centro is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the antique buildings are protected. Living in historic Centro offers a wonderful lifestyle, as one can walk to the squares, markets, as well as the wonderful shops, galleries and restaurants located in this zone. The center of this neighborhood is the Parroquia, the famous church in San Miguel. In front of the Parroquia is the Jardin, which is the main square and a gathering place in town. There are other historical churches in Centro Historico, including Las Monjas with its golden dome and San Francisco Church with its Churrigueresque façade and tiled dome. Centro Historico is a hub of activity, enjoyed by visitors and residents alike. To live in Centro Historico, you must embrace the street noise, traffic, church bells, and fireworks.



Centro is a larger central section of town that includes and surrounds Centro Historico. It encompasses parts of the hillsides above and below the historic zone, as well as the southern area leading to Juarez Park and the northern area behind the Ignacio Ramirez Market. Centro is a highly desirable residential area in San Miguel. In addition to the historic zone, Centro features peaceful pockets, hillside locations with spectacular views, hushed thoroughfares, and Juarez Park, around which you'll find some of the most luxurious (and expensive) homes in San Miguel de Allende. A Centro address has cachet. It's popular with owners and renters, since you can enjoy the activities of town without needing a car.


San Antonio

San Antonio is a very popular neighborhood, one of the largest neighborhoods in San Miguel. It adjoins Centro on its east and north sides, with the areas closest to Centro being the most sought after. San Antonio has it’s own church and central square with fountain. It's a vibrant neighborhood with a mix of local families and expatriates. In San Antonio, you experience a truly Mexican neighborhood. There are small markets, restaurants, tortilla factories, and workshops. There are also many artists who live and have studios in San Antonio, and there is an “art walk,” in which you can visit the studios of the artists in the area. San Antonio is popular with renters, especially those who want to have an authentic experience of living among the locals.  Like Centro, San Antonio has a lot of activity and its own set of noises, from church bells to roosters. It really is a great cultural mix and appreciated by its residents.



Guadiana is a tranquil neighborhood very close to Centro and to San Antonio. Bordered by Ancha San Antonio, with its great variety of shops, restaurants and the organic market, Guadiana is almost completely residential. There is a central park, beautifully landscaped, and the homes in Guadiana are all well-maintained. Guadiana is a favorite because it's a flat walk to Centro, close to amenities and yet sedate. Unlike San Antonio, there are no workshops or local markets, so residents enjoy peaceful surroundings within close proximity to the activities of town.


Ojo de Agua

Located behind Juarez Park and up the hillside, Ojo de Agua is a prestigious residential address. Many homes in Ojo de Agua boast spectacular views over Juarez Park to the Parroquia and Centro. Ojo de Agua is a newer neighborhood in San Miguel de Allende, and the real estate can be quite expensive. Homes are consistently high quality, and there are beautiful gardens and roof terraces from which to enjoy the views. For homes higher on the hillside, returning from Centro can be challenging, but homes lower on the hill enjoy a gentle slope walk to and from town. 



Guadalupe is located north of Centro, and it offers a flat walk to the activities of Centro. Very popular with artists and designers, Guadalupe is sometimes referred to as the Soho of San Miguel de Allende.  There's a favorite organic grocery store and bakery, small cafes and restaurants, and an easy walk to the Fabrica Aurora. Notably, there is an abundance of street art in Guadalupe, with murals decorating many of the streets.  Guadalupe is beloved by both locals and expats.



Obraje is a newer neighborhood on the north side of Centro, and it is quickly developing a fanbase. The flat section of Obraje has new, upscale homes, and up the hillside are some dramatic new residences with expansive views of Centro. Homes on this hillside enjoy southern exposure and a special view of downtown, with the churches lined-up in a row. Notably, there is a new hotel being built at the base of Obraje, Live Aqua, which will be an upscale hotel with restaurants, pool, fitness center, and amenities. This hotel will only make Obraje a more sought-after locale. 



Directly up the hill from the Jardin is Atascadero, sometimes called “Los Arcos,” given that entering the neighborhood from town involves going through the arched gate of the original Atascadero Ranch.  Atascadero is a quietly sumptuous residential area that has slowly grown since the 1950s. As a result, there is a mix of architectural styles. Many homes have views of town and the valley, and the area is known for its mature vegetation and larger gardens.



Overlooking San Miguel above the market area is Los Balcones, a peaceful residential area with luxury homes. Properties on the hillside enjoy some of the most dramatic views in all of San Miguel, overlooking the Parroquia, Centro and facing the sunset. To enjoy these views, however, involves a steep walk, so it's often referred to as a “walk down, cab home” neighborhood. Nearby, with some homes adjoining it, is the botanical garden. There is a beautiful canyon with lakes and hiking trails to enjoy. This area is exclusively residential so there aren't many local amenities available.


Rinconada de los Balcones

Further back from town from Balcones is a newer residential area called Rinconada de los Balcones. Wide streets and sunset views, as well as access to the botanical gardens have made this an appealing area. The homes in Rinconada de los Balcones are generally large and new, with some bold architectural design. Because the lots are large, there are some beautiful homes and grounds.



Located on the North West hill facing Centro, Independencia is an up-and-coming neighborhood. The area is a true mix. There are humble homes, upscale homes, and everything in between. Some homes have beautiful views, as Independencia faces downtown and the Picaccho mountains. You can find good values in Independencia, and it is becoming an attractive alternative to the pricier in-town neighborhoods.


Vista Antigua

Located on the very Northern side of town, Vista Antigua is a gated community of homes, many with stunning views of downtown San Miguel. The homes in Vista Antigua are deligthful, and there is a sense of security for those wishing to have a gate and guard on site. Vista Antigua residents are an engaging mix of Mexican nationals and expatriates, and its proximity to the ring road and to the road to Dolores makes for easy trips to shopping and golf.



Malanquin is a gated golf community located just outside the ring road around San Miguel on the south side of the city. The 18-hole golf course is the center of Malanquin, and there is a country club, pool, tennis and walking trails. Homes in Malanquin are generally quite large, and those facing the golf course are at a premium. There is a good mix of Mexican nationals and expats, who want a secure gated community with all the amenities.


El Paraiso

Located at the edge of town, very near the Salida Queretaro, El Paraiso is a relatively new gated community.  Homes are well maintained, and while there are still empty lots, the neighborhood is filling in nicely. Homes in El Paraiso vary in architectural style, are usually attached with zero lot line. Convenience is a key benefit of El Paraiso. It's within the ring road but close to local amenities, including the shopping mall, movie theater, and large grocery stores. While you can walk to town, it's generally considered a driving neighborhood.


Los Frailes

Located outside the ring road on the south side of town, Los Frailes is an established residential neighborhood. Homes in Los Frailes come in a range of sizes and styles: from small bungalows to large elegant homes. Most homes in Los Frailes have gardens, garages, and space for entertaining, and the residents appreciate the soothing qualities of the neighborhood. There are few stores or restaurants in Los Frailes, so a car is necessary.