Last updateTue, 11 Nov 2014 11am

La Manzanilla Memo – November 1, 2014

Magnolia’s Kitchen & Drinks

At the end of last season, after an eight year run, we said “adios” to restaurant Café de Flores.  The owners decided it was time to retire and enjoy some beach time.

Lucky for us Café de Flores’s Chef, Alex Mayberry, decided to stick around. Mayberry and Pan Encantado pastry chef, Leia Bowers, have partnered and just opened Magnolia’s Kitchen & Drinks.  They secured a coveted location on the main jardin and spent a sweltering summer remodeling the space which includes an inviting bar, open kitchen, and patio seating.   

Mayberry is a veteran of La Manzanilla but Bowers is a relatively new addition.  She and her husband, Will, arrived two years ago to run the vacation rental complex, Brisa del Mar.  Bowers had always dreamed of having her own bakery and last season she made that dream a reality when she opened Pan Encantado.   Success came quickly with area tiendas and coffee shops clamoring for her baked goods throughout the high season.  With all her energy now focused on Magnolia’s she will not be reopening the bakery this season, and will only be providing baked goods to two bakeries, one in La Manzanilla and one in Barra de Navidad.   The rest of her fans, of which there are many, will have to come to the restaurant to get their bread and pastry fix.  

Magnolia’s menu highlights feature decadent martini mashed potatoes, a hearty portion of creamy mashed potatoes topped with delicately sautéed shrimp, butter sauce and capers, all served up in a martini glass.  Also look for the house-made flatbread with fresh mozzarella, tomato, basil and a balsamic vinegar reduction.  Innovative sliders, sashimi tuna tostadas, and house made breads and desserts also grace the menu.   Each day chalkboard specials invite patrons to try what’s fresh and in season.

“We really wanted to bring something new and different to La Manzanilla.  We are focusing on small plates with an international flare, specialty infused vodkas and tequilas and fresh baked goods,” states Mayberry.

With a smile and southern accent Bowers adds, “Oh, and be sure to try the signature cocktail, The Magnolia, a tasty combination of fresh grapefruit juice and champagne.”  

Located on the main jardin, Magnolia’s is open for lunch and dinner Thursday through Saturday and Sundays for brunch only. Happy hour specials on drinks and menu items run from 2-5 p.m.  Reservations at 315-351-5114.

Spacifico Spa

Spacifico Spa celebrates its fifth season and will be opening Wednesday, November 5.  New hours this season are 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Friday.  

This year there will be two full-time therapists offering massage, pedicure, manicure, facials, and other spa delights.  Appointments are available by calling 315-107-8060 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  They will also be introducing a new line of vegan snacks.

Palapa Joe’s

Live Music starts at Palapa Joe’s the first week of November.  No cover.  The house band, The Lounge Lizards, play every Friday. Wednesdays features returning guitarist and troubadour Scotty Turner.  Grilled pizza and various new menu items await.

Portraiture Classes

Jack Smith, an artist from Taos, is currently spending several months in La Manzanilla. Smith is offering one on one classes with a focus on portraiture, but not exclusive to that genre. These tutorials are intended for intermediate and advanced artists. He will come to your studio or home for these sessions.

Classes are 650 pesos per hour. You may contact him through his website at www.jackrichardsmith.com

Bookstore Opens

Libreria Manos Ayudando, La Manzanilla’s used bookstore, will be open daily from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. in mid-November.  The bookstore is run by volunteers and all proceeds from book sales are put back into the community, mostly through educational scholarships. Last year’s scholarships totaled just over 50,000 pesos.   They are always accepting donations of paperback books.  No hardcovers, please.  

Bending Tree Yoga

Bending Tree Yoga & Healing Center is offering Yoga and Pilates classes Mondays through Thursdays from 9-10 a.m.  Classes are 100 pesos each or purchase a package of classes at a discount.  You’ll also find reflexology treatments by appointment.  Further details at www.bendingtreeyogahealing.com.

School Supply Drive

The Catalina Educational Foundation and VisitLaManzanilla.com are once again partnering for the annual school supply drive.  Donations of supplies or financial donations will be accepted through January 1.  Supplies are delivered to La Manzanilla’s schools on Kings Day, January 6.   For a list of needed supplies or ways to donate contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or if you are visiting La Manzanilla stop by Libreria Manos Ayudando to drop off donations.

Galeria La Manzanilla

Galeria La Manzanilla opens November 15, with scheduled Meet the Artist Receptions on December 6, January 16, and February 20.  Receptions are from 4-7 p.m. and feature the newest works of selected artists.  Regular gallery hours are Monday - Saturday 11 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.