The New Old Mexico - United Hub

The new old Mexico

All the cool kids are flocking to the Tucatán's historic cultural center, Mérida

By The Hub team

Story by Mary Holland | Hemispheres, October 2018

At the turn of the 20th century, the Yucatecan capital, Mérida, ranked as Mexico's richest city, thanks to the production of henequén, a rope fiber made from a type of agave plant. “La Ciudad Blanca," as it's nicknamed, still boasts the third-largest centro histórico in the Americas, after Havana and Mexico City, but it has nonetheless remained largely off the tourist radar. For years, the henequén barons' mansions sat neglected, but that's now changing, as creative types flood back into the revitalized old city.

Historic architecture at Casa T'hoHistoric architecture at Casa T'ho

“Mérida is so cool right now, because there's a modern and ancient mix in almost everything, from designers to food," says Eduardo Rukos, owner of the recently opened Yucatecan restaurant Piñuela. Here, pioneering chef Pedro Evia—who also founded the avant-garde tasting-menu spot K'u'uk Restaurante a couple of miles away—highlights local ingredients in dishes such as marquesitas (rolled and filled crepe-like wafers) and grilled octopus with xcatik chilis.

Casa Dominga

Piñuela, which is housed in the former Hotel Mérida, is one of many new businesses taking advantage of the city's glorious turn-of-the-century mansions. The lively food market Casa Dominga Barrio Gourmet opened late last year in a crisp white 1906 French Neoclassical estate, a building that partner Daniel Trejo Contreras describes as “a destination in itself." Five minutes away, the bright upmarket concept store Casa T'ho—where you can pick up your own henequén bag—occupies an early-19th-century mansion on the Paseo de Montejo, Mérida's tree-lined answer to the Champs-Élysées. And the sunny Ya'ax Hotel Boutique was opened last year after being restored by local artisans using regional techniques and building materials such as chukum tree resin, a favorite of the Maya.

After enjoying an architectural amble around town, settle in on the patio at the brewpub Hermana República to taste craft beers and cochinita croquettes amid dangling strings of lights and crumbling walls lined with greenery. “Next to the beach, close to Mayan monuments, and rich in culture," says the brewery's managing director, Gabriel Méndez, “Mérida feels like paradise."

Search flights

United Cargo operates more than 11,000 cargo-only flights in one year

By The Hub team, March 19, 2021

On March 19, 2020, United operated its first flight carrying cargo without passengers on board. While the passenger cabin was empty, its cargo hold was completely full, carrying more than 29,000 pounds of commodities from Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) to Frankfurt Airport (FRA).

A year later, United Cargo has operated more than 11,000 cargo-only flights carrying more than 570 million pounds of freight. To support the COVID-19 pandemic recovery efforts, United Cargo has also transported more than 113 million pounds of medical and pharmaceutical products on both cargo-only and passenger flights as well as approximately 10 million COVID-19 vaccines, providing global communities access to the items they have needed most.

10 tips for spring travel

By The Hub team, February 24, 2021

Whether you haven't flown with us for a while or just need a quick refresher before your spring trip, read this list of tips to know before your flight and arrive at the airport travel-ready:

1. Download the United app for contactless bag check, travel assistance and more

Before your flight, download the United app to view your flight status, check in, sign up for flight notifications, locate departure gates, access our free personal device entertainment when available and more. We've also updated our app with new features that can make your trip a little safer, including contactless bag check.

Don't forget to use Agent on Demand for help with any and all questions you may have before your flight. This new capability is available at all our U.S. hub airports and allows you to use your own mobile device to contact a customer service agent via phone, video or chat to help with day-of-travel questions while you're at the airport. Learn more about Agent on Demand here.

United joins UNICEF COVAX initiative

By The Hub team, February 19, 2021

This week, we were honored to become the first U.S. airline to join the UNICEF Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative to combat the COVID-19 pandemic by transporting the vaccine and other critically needed supplies to underserved areas of the globe.

"We are committed to helping the global community in any way we can, and we all must work together to do our part to bring this health and humanitarian crisis to an end," said Director of Cargo Specialty Products Manu Jacobs.

We will leverage our expertise to transport these critical pharmaceutical and healthcare shipments around the world safely, efficiently and expediently. We are proud to partner with the United Nations to support this global effort and provide equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.

Scroll to top