Nov 23, 2008

Everything, including the kitchen sink

Over the years, we have owned a few houses, 3 of which we renovated extensively. I often wondered if I had the courage or vision to do a build from the ground up. So many design choices... so many options...
But here we are building our new winter home in the land of the sea, sun and sand.
Mind you, our design options are not unlimited. Each palapa site is typically 22 x 44 feet. Our second floor will be a loft of about 300 sq ft, plus a balcony of about 6 x 22 feet.
Our trailer in which we have lived for more than two years, is about 350 sq feet so this will quadruple our living space.

The “outdoor” space (under the palapa) will have a full bathroom, a kitchen with a regular gas stove, and a regular fridge (a big step up from our little RV stove & fridge); a bodega (storage room), a washer and dryer, dining and living areas; and stairs leading to the loft and balcony.
So we have been shopping for a bunch of stuff. Fortunately, there are quite a few places to look.
In Playa, 15 minutes away, we have a variety of big stores. A WalMart plus 4 Mexican versions: Mega, Soriana, Chedraui, and AurerraBodega each with all the same stuff and more. We also have a Sam’s and a City Club. And in Cancun, just over an hour away, we have a Home Depot and Costco.
As well there are plenty of local furniture, appliance and building supply stores. As I have mentioned, this is a rapidly growing area, and there is lots of competition for all the customers.

It has been fun looking at floor and wall tiles, counter tiles too, as well as fixtures of all kinds and appliances. In all my previous projects, I have never bought a new stove or fridge. I am shopping with my camera, documenting all kinds of items from the bright, rustic mexican-style to the most modern available anywhere.
First we found some beautiful glass blocks with bubbles, and brought home several boxes.
Then we found a stacking washer dryer on discount at City Club, sale ending the next day. So with our neigbours, Bob & Dot, both each bought a set. We now have the two complete laundry units standing outside our trailer, under a tarp, waiting for our places to be built. Funny thing is -- when we decided to do this palapa life, Susan declared that a W&D was the most important thing she looked forward to getting for our new place. Hiking our clothes back and forth to a laundry for these last two years of full-time rv’ing will soon be over, at least for the winters.

Yesterday we went into town again and ordered our main floor tiles. They’ll take three weeks to get here, they say... We met up with Bob and Dot (our new palapa neighbours) in at our favorite fish taco restaurant to compare notes. With so many decisions and choices to make it has been very helpful to have another couple to bounce ideas around with.

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