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Review: Pug Seal, Oaxaca

This Guide stayed at Pug Seal Zapoteco in Oaxaca and it’s definitely into my short-list of favorite hotels. With service, check-in process, the food, the beautiful spaces, the location, the bathrooms, the complimentary mini bar, the cookies… It checks all of the boxes. There are affiliate links in this review for booking the hotel (like this: Pug Seal Oaxaca) because I would stay there again myself. Let’s explore a weekend stay at one of Oaxaca’s coolest hotels…


How was the room at Pug Seal?

The rooms are well-designed for the space. When you’re walking to your room and you see it lit up with that cozy lighting and modern fixtures, through its antique door, it feels very inviting and very cool.

I was in the Standard King room. That had a big comfortable bed with Oaxacan chocolates waiting for me when I arrived. Stocked fridge. Spacious shower with a high rainfall showerhead and a stone tile bench. Great toilet. Two sinks in the vanity with good lighting for both. Everything is embossed with the hotel’s cute pug logo. 

The only draw-back for me with the room was the lack of a desk. There are so many tables around the hotel in quiet alcoves, that won’t be a problem for most people. I need a private desk if I’m taking any client calls. But there are rooms with desks, so if that’s something you need, just grab one of those. 

Check-out more photos of the hotel and rates here: Pug Seal Zapoteco, Oaxaca, on Booking

Complimentary snacks and drinks plus a real honor bar

My favorite hotels over the past year have all had one feature that’s still relatively unique in the hotel world: complimentary snacks and drinks. It’s not this specific feature that makes them the favorite, but I’d say it’s indicative of an approach to creating a welcoming space that carries through the entire experience.

And I understand that I’m paying for those snacks and drinks. But still, when I walk in the room and the fridge is stocked, and the host says: “Help yourself to anything in the fridge…” << That is an astronomically more pleasant experience than being greeted in the room by an absurd minibar price list which only says: “Welcome, we hope to rob you if we can find an opportunity!”

Pug Seal Zapoteco nailed the complimentary snacks and drinks the best out of all of the hotels I’ve visited in the past year. As soon as I arrived, the front desk offered me sandwiches, freshly baked sugar cookies, and coffee. Those were always available. The room fridge had sparkling water, soft drinks, and cans of Modelo Especial. There were complimentary fruit baskets and tea stations around the hotel. And next to the terrace, on the ground floor, is a fully stocked honor bar with local liquors, cricket and worm salt, and everything else you need to make a delicious cocktail, basically at cost. o

The honor bar had locally distilled mezcal, vodka, rye, rum, and gin, along with cocktail shakers, and a variety of glasses. The second photo is one of the fruit, tea, and beer stations around the premises. 

Breakfasts at Pug Seal Zapoteco

In the morning, pick one of the tables outside of your room, around the courtyard or in one of the plant-filled alcoves, and a staff member will be by shortly to bring you a menu and ask if you’d like coffee and breads. 

I had two breakfasts and would stay longer just for more. The breakfast experience is excellent. The staff had lots of info to share about my adventure plans for the day and the food was uniformly delicious. The hand-crafted ceramics are a pleasure to eat and drink from in the morning. The cuisine is a mix of local traditional breakfasts and some international staples.

How is Pug Seal, Oaxaca for digital nomads?

I did one of my mental health Q&A livestreams from Pug Seal and had no issues with the internet. You should be able to do video calls from anywhere in the hotel and the art on every wall makes for beautiful back-drops. 

As I mentioned above, there may not be a desk in the King Standard rooms, so go for the Deluxe or any of the Suites if you need to work in privacy. But if that’s not a concern, there are tables throughout (including several right beside the honor bar).

If you need to take a photo for Instagram of yourself on a swing in the courtyard of a colonial-era building in Mexico, they do have a swing. You could also sit by the fountain and write some poetry or some code.

Location & Hours

Location: Pug Seal Oaxaca, C. Porfirio Díaz 212, RUTA INDEPENDENCIA, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca de Juárez

Would I visit Pug Seal again?

Definitely. I’ll grab one of the Deluxe Rooms the next time I’m in Oaxaca. I look forward to spending more time there and working through the entirety of the breakfast menu. I’m also excited to try the Pug Seal hotel in Mexico City. You can find the Oaxaca Pug Seal here, and the Mexico City Pug Seal here.

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