Costa Maya, Xcalak and Mahahual (Majahual) Guest pages - Watch a house being built - Welcome |
Watch a house being built

Welcome to the "Watch a house being built" page.

Joe and Susan McDowellWe are Joe and Susan McDowell and would like to share our  building experience with all visitors. On these pages you can find the design of the house, the actual construction process and the costs that were incurred. You can find information on the materials that were used for the construction.

We are from Baltimore, Maryland USA. I (Joe) am a project manager for a construction firm and Susan manages a real estate investment company.

 We first came to the Yucatan on vacation 2 1/2 years ago and immediately fell in love with the area and its people. We revisited the area every 4 months or so, venturing farther south each time we went. During the time we were at home we did a lot of research on the area and on the possibility of purchasing waterfront property.

 We started to focus on the Mahahual (Majahual)/Xcalak area in the winter of 2002. The area has a combination of a lack of commercialism and relatively inexpensive land prices that attracted us. We came down in April of 2002 and purchased 2 lots 7 km north of Xcalak.

During our visits to the Yucatan we would take note of the architectural features of the buildings we would see. This research eventually led to our design of the house we are about to construct. 


 As we neared completion of the house it became necessary to begin furnish it. Last November we stayed in Cancun and visited every furniture store we could track down. We were looking for furniture that was rustic in appearance and comfortable. We were able to locate a few pieces at the "EL Baulito" store on Av. Sunyaxchen in downtown Cancun. We found the futons we wanted at the "Liverpool" store in Plaza las Americas. We made arrangements to have a truck to haul these and other items to Xcalak.

 In Chetumal we were only able to find a small coffee table and some mirrors.

 After returning in frustration to Xcalak we heard that there was a furniture factory in Noh-Bec. Noc-Bec is a small town west of Rte 307 approximately 12km north of Limones. We went to Noh-Bec and couldn't find the factory. We were about to return when we came across a young man riding down the road on a bicycle. In my best bad spanish I asked him "donde esta la fabrica para muebles". He replied in perfect english "so you are looking for some furniture". It turns out that his father is a carpintero and has a shop in the next town. Fernando took me to his restaurant in Noh-Bec and then led us to his fathers shop in Polinkin which is only 1km from his restaurant.

 Fernando introduced me to his father who showed me a catalog of some of the work he has done. Although his place doesn't look like much from the outside it soon became apparent that Senor Candido was a fine furniture maker. We designed an armoire for the second floor, chose what species of wood to use, agreed to a price and made arrangements to have the piece shipped to Xcalak after it was done.

 When we returned to Xcalak last month we were very pleased when we saw the armoire for the first time. We returned to Noh-Bec, found Fernando and returned to Candido's shop. We ordered a small dining room table with chairs, end table, bookcase and a dresser. We again made arrangements to have the furniture delivered to Xcalak.

 If we would have known about Candido when we started out we would have saved countless hours and aggravation looking for furniture. He can construct wood furniture in almost any style you want and his prices are very reasonable. The fact that he is relatively nearby and will deliver is a big plus.

Fernando's restaurant "Los Candiles"

 Fernando's restaurant "Los Candiles" in Noh-Bec on the Noh-Bec to Pentacab Rd.

Candido's shop in Pentacab. Candido (center) Fernando and his son (right) and Fernando's brother (left)

Candido's shop

 Fernando's family

Fernando is part of a large extended family in this area.
Candido with his son. The shop is on the Noh-Bec - Pentacab Rd. 1km north of Fernando's restaurant (Los Candiles)

 Candido with his son

The armoire that Candido


The armoire that Candido made for us last November.
Our beach palapa at sunrise

Our beach palapa

Our wonderful caretakers, Gilberto and Rosa with their children


Our wonderful caretakers, Gilberto and Rosa with their children Fernando and Virginia.