For my first foray out in the world since the start of the pandemic I chose Medellín, Colombia. I am very happy with my choice.
Medellín is the capital of the Colombian state of Antioquia. If nothing else, it is known for its mountainous beauty:
Approaching the airport
And has the reputation of Eternal Spring. The weather is balmy year round.
Travel tip: Because of the fine weather, the indoor and outdoor spaces of restaurants and hotels in Medellín merge seamlessly. Which means that you are never in a fully enclosed space, except in your hotel room. This airy living makes the city a perfect place to visit during a pandemic.
Medellín: El Cielo Hotel
Not going to lie: I do like hanging out in nice hotels. I can recommend El Cielo without hesitation. Speaking of indoor and outdoor spaces merging, this living wall is in the center of the lobby.
It extends up six flight and forms an atrium open to the sky. The lobby is furthermore open on both ends:
David is hard at work on his laptop.
In the foreground is the patio where we had breakfast in the mornings and drinks in the evening.
In the background is the fine-dining restaurant. The chef and owner is the one-named Juanma. (Full name: Juan Manuel Barrientos Valencia.)
On the sixth floor is the pool.
Let’s add the moon:
We stayed in the neighborhood known as Poblado. Bars, restaurants, art galleries. Street vibe. All good.
The city is walkable. But it also sprawls, so ride shares/taxis are unavoidable.
Fortunately, the Museum of Modern Art was within walking distance of our hotel.
The building impresses with its size and spaces awaiting future exhibits. As everywhere in the city, the views from the museum are inviting.
View from the top floor terrace of the Museum of Modern Art. The lacy metal wall is an example of how the indoor and outdoor merge, architecturally speaking
I’ll leave you an with an image of a traditional dish of northern South America, the arepa:
Patties of ground maize served with almost everything – at the El Cielo hotel
I first encountered arepas when I lived in Miami during the academic year 2019-2020. A foray into the neighborhood now dubbed Doralzuela (Doral + the many immigrants from Venezuela) led me to this restaurant:
El Arepazo – a really big arepa
I’m glad to relate my experiences in Miami to Colombia.
Title image: Medellín in the early morning, seen from the top floor of the El Cielo hotel.