Bienvenidos! Welcome to Antigua, Guatemala.
2 Girls Who Travel here. We are at it again! We really feel like our motto or our mission or guiding principle is “Travel is Life.” We love to experience and immerse ourselves in other cultures.
On this trip, we ventured to the beautiful town of Antigua, Guatemala and booked an amazing Airbnb. Our Airbnb hosts, Tom and Paul, owned and operated an art gallery in Honolulu, Hawaii for 10 years before moving to Guatemala. They purchased a home and quickly started adding their artistic flair to it and from there La Casa de las Ollas (House of the Cooking Pots) was born!
The Story Behind the Pots
Tom and Paul love art and love handmade ceramics and folk art. Their penchant for ceramics was the start to collecting the beautiful pots of Guatemala, large and small, for the past 14 years. These pots were used for cooking, water and storage and come from all over the country.
First things first about this amazing Airbnb… and the thing most people traveling to Guatemala should ask! Is there filtered water available? Because drinking tap water is not at all recommended. It is not filtered and could have bacteria or parasites.
The House of Pots has a number of wonderful amenities, including a three-filter system (paper, carbon and UV light) at the kitchen sink for your safety. The house also has WiFi access and new LG appliances. Plus the location is great. The house is in walking distance to many restaurants, ruins and other attractions.
The house was architecturally designed and built by Pierre Turlin of Antigua with quality and aesthetics in mind. The wood utilized for the ceiling is a local wood called conacaste which is known for its beautiful grain and natural repellent against insects.
The furniture and artwork are all from Tom and Paul’s own personal collection. The furnishings are mostly vintage Guatemalan and exhibit the unique character of the country. There are paintings of Antigua by local artist Alfredo Garcia Gil and textiles that are Tzutes or ceremonial textiles from Chichicastenango; and are about 50-60 years old.
Take a look at the inside of the House of Pots below.
The living room area… check out the ceiling and skylight!
A Unique Experience: Guatemalan Family Meal
Tom and Paul met a wonderful family before they moved to Guatemala. This family truly became their family! They first met David, the father, about 16 years ago and David now works for them full-time. Carmen is David’s wife and together they have six children: Yulissa, Doris, David Alexander, Cristopher, Beverly (named after Paul’s mother) and Anderson Thomas (named after Tom). David and Carmen also take care of Carmen’s mother, Cata, who also lives with them.
On our last night in the city, David and Carmen and their children hosted a traditional Guatemalan dinner in their home in the neighboring town of Jocotenango. Carmen is a wonderful cook and prepared traditional Guatemalan dishes for us. We loved Carmen’s cooking. The meal was well-seasoned and a delicious ending to a wonderful trip.
David and Carmen and their family are kind and open-hearted people. They truly made this trip one of the best we’ve ever experienced. We didn’t speak much Spanish and they didn’t speak much English, but it didn’t matter. We laughed, ate and talked the night away… just an amazing experience.
If you ever get to Antigua, which we highly recommend, book the House of Pots on Airbnb and ask for a Guatemalan Family Meal experience. You won’t regret it! Tell them that 2 Girls Who Travel sent you!