Monday, July 13, 2015

Opulence in Querétaro



Image result for sordo madaleno antea lifestyle center

Antea Lifestyle Center


Whoever said there is no money in Mexico has clearly never been to Querétaro. The city is booming, American factories and Japanese car companies are springing up everywhere and real estate is flourishing. In Juriquilla, a suburb of Querétaro, resides the largest shopping mall in Mexico and Latin America.

Recently my friend Lin arrived at my house and whisked me off for a day at the mall, and what a delightful day we had! The three department stores in the mall are very upscale versions of El Palacio de Hierro, Liverpool and Sears. El Palacio is so huge that we actually got completely lost inside!




The Antea Lifestyle Center was designed by architect Javier Sordo Madeleno, and reportedly cost one billion dollars to build. It covers 271,000 square meters and is the ultimate in luxury and opulence. The project includes a huge housing development, hotels and recreation as well as the gargantuan mall.




Breaking ground in 2011, Antea has been some time in reaching fruition. Todd and I dropped in to look when it first opened, but although many of the storefronts had the names of future occupants, few were as yet in residence. The names though, told the story. Tory Burch, Chanel, Burberry, Michael Kors, Carolina Herrera, Louis Vuitton, Chico's, Anne Fontaine and Dolce & Gabbana to name a few. As well there was the promise of a Ferrari / Maserati dealership and JW Marriott plans to open a property adjacent to Antea by 2017.


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Of course all the designer stores were wonderful to browse through but it was some of the vendors that we don’t usually see here in Mexico that really fascinated me. We found Victoria’s Secret, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Benetton, Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel, Zara Home, H&M Home and on and on and on.




For a makeup artist it doesn’t get much better than this. Cosmetic Departments in Liverpool and El Palacio that carry Chanel, Lauder, Arden, YSL, Orlane, Clarins, Dior and just about anything else you can imagine. To top it off there is a Sephora and a MAC Cosmetics store!


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Lin treated me to lunch in P.F. Chang’s. OMG it was wonderful. If you don’t want Chinese there is also El Almacén, Fisher’s, Chili’s, Las Pasteria, China (okay that’s Chinese too), Moshi Moshi, Italianis, and the California Pizza Kitchen. Fast food? You name it. Kiosks, which are really little restaurants line the center of the main floor. You will find Starbucks, Krispe Kreme donuts and Suchi among the many offerings.

If you want to be entertained there is a Cinépolis VIP where you can sit in lazyboy comfort while you watch the movie. You can also order from the sushi, sandwiches, bar or coffee menus and the staff will bring your order without disturbing your entertainment.


Photos above and below by Todd McIntosh,



Amazing décor and merchandizing abound in every corner







Sensory overload






Thank you Lin for a very special day!




  1. Wow, I'm so happy you had a special day. I'm also thrilled to hear that there is a Chico's and Pottery Barn there. I must return.......soon! Thanks for another great post......

  2. Oh Barbara, we had great fun. I needed that! It's definitely worth a visit.

  3. It sounds as if I have an additional destination on my next trip up your way.

    1. It is definitely worth seeing Steve. I imagine anything anyone could ever want is in there somewhere and it's fun looking for it.

  4. Replies
    1. Shirley it was such a perfect day!! Lin knew just how to perk me up.

  5. Shannon, we have never met and I'm new to your blog as Steve mentioned your situation in his blog this morning. So, pleased to make your acquaintance. I also live in Mexico in QRoo and was appalled to read about your trip through Seguro Popular but also reminded of an emergency foray into a hospital in Guatemala which was equally disturbing in some ways.

    What prompts me to comment is this post about Antea...did you actually see anyone buying anything? I've been in Liverpool where I live and there are always more clerks than clientele. I have never been able to understand how they stay open. Then this mall you describe is Liverpool on steroids and it makes me wonder whether the investment isn't all part of the cartel at work. What's your take on it?

    My thoughts are with you as you deal with your ongoing treatments and I'll also put my money where my mouth is. I'm glad to be able to help and eternally grateful to have made it to 65 and able to use US Medicare should the need arise.

  6. Welcome to Rat Race Refugee Kathy. Actually, on my first visit to the mall that is exactly what I thought. "Boy this is money laundering at it's pinnacle!", but the last time I was there it was different. All the stores are open now, the restaurants are well attended, and people do seem to be shopping. That said, it is still very possible that the entire enterprise, or at least part of it, is a cartel at work. Sadly that is something I think we all wonder on a regular basis here. But whatever the reason for the existence of Antea, it is certainly something to see!

    I am glad that you have medical recourse should you have problems. I hope you don't, but I'm sure it is very comforting to know that it is there. In retrospect I sure wish we had gotten IMSS or something before all my problems started, but then hindsight is 20/20, LOL.