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Drawing and Painting San Miguel






March 9-16, 2024

A painting retreat with artist and teacher, Susan Singer

in stunning San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

  • Imagine traveling to a beautiful city, rich in history, replete with aged buildings in all the colors of the rainbow.

  • Imagine excellent accommodations in the midst of a garden paradise.

  • Imagine food for reasonable prices within walking distance.

  • Imagine time, time, time to explore this amazing place and to learn how to paint pictures of it - paintings which become life-long memories.

  • Now imagine giving yourself the gift of that dream!

Join Susan Singer for eight days in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, March 9 - 16, 2024. You'll stay in a centrally-located hotel with an interior courtyard with swimming pool and luxurious garden. Classes will be held there and around town as you walk to historical sites where you'll paint the life of the city.

Some meals are included, but you'll also have a chance to explore the city's many first class restaurants on your own. Excursions are planned for their aesthetic beauty, culinary delight, great painting opportunities, and/or historical value. Pleasure and painting opportunities take equal billing in this wonderful opportunity to explore another culture through rendering it in paint. Some drawing and painting experience is needed to take best advantage of the opportunity.

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San Miguel de Allende, located in central Mexico is a Heritage UNESCO puebla magica, not to mention voted one of the best places in the world to live by Conde Nast Traveler two years in a row. Come and be captivated by the friendliness and beauty of this town! Linda Laino has lived in San Miguel for twelve years and is helping Susan facilitate the retreat.

More on San Miguel below.

Retreat Venue


We are sure you will be delighted with the accommodations and facilities. Hacienda de las Flores is a family owned, old-world style hotel in the heart of centro making it a super convenient and easy home base from which to explore San Miguel. 

About Susan Singer

Susan Singer is a professional artist from Richmond, Virginia, who spends her time creating, teaching, and feeling delighted by life. A practicing artist for over 20 years and with a Master's in Interdisciplinary studies from Virginia Commonwealth University, Singer is equally passionate about teaching and has taught at The Visual Arts Center in Richmond since 2006, overseas in Austria, Iceland, and on an international cruise ship for "Semester at Sea" as their resident artist. 

She has shown her paintings extensively in the Richmond Metropolitan area, in Washington, DC, in Iceland at the Akureyri Art Museum, and in Austria. Her work can be found in private and corporate collections nationwide and internationally. 

She loves to combine art and travel as she believes that drawing something is the best way to keep it in our memories forever.

Scenes from Susan's 2022 retreat in San Miguel



"San Miguel was a beautiful city to learn watercolor from Susan. Hacienda de Las Floras was the perfect location for class, followed by plein air painting in various locations, including El Pavo Real winery. The week’s itinerary was a lovely blend of instruction, culture and fun. Thank you so much for the opportunity!"

~Ruth Van Davelaar


"I am feeling refreshed, inspired, and full of creativity after the watercolor painting retreat in San Miguel. Susan’s expert instruction helped me to grasp watercolor painting skills quickly, and we were out painting in the beautiful San Miguel scenery very soon after our arrival. The variety of locations and subjects to paint was simply marvelous. It felt wonderful to be immersed in a new culture creating art every day. I felt completely safe the entire time. The excursions were well thought out, and every single meal was better than the last. Susan’s kind but discerning critique helped my paintings to reach their fullest potential. I am going home with memories and paintings that I will cherish for a lifetime." 

~Jocelyn Van Davelaar


"An incredible excursion and learning experience. Our diverse group learned much from Susan’s expertly led painting exercises, demonstrations, and on site instruction. Linda coordinated city and country day trips, beautiful and delicious meals, and provided answers to all of our logistical questions. It was a week of art, beauty, and adventure—truly an experience I’ll never forget."

~ Irene Ziegler

"Susan Singer and Linda Laino made our retreat wonderful. I learned some things about watercolor that I will always use. And I loved Linda’s selection of day trips."  ~ Karen Ziegler

 Itinerary *

  • Arrive Saturday

  • Workshop Sunday-Friday after breakfast

       We'll address use of watercolor, composition, negative painting, painting a landscape, perspective, painting buildings, accuracy of color, and more.

  • 9-12  workshop

  • lunch

  • 2-5   workshop

  • Wednesday is a free day. Linda can suggest and help with other excursions if desired, (not included) such as hot springs, cooking class, horseback riding, Botanical Gardens, La Fabrica Aurrora art center, art studio tour and more.

  •  ​Excursion to El Pavo Real  (wine tasting/food pairing)  Thursday evening.

  • One-on-one meeting with Susan to discuss artistic progress/process 

  • Friday-Farewell Dinner

  • Saturday-Depart

         *subject to change


We have two different price points

based on your room choice. 

One King:               $2745 

Two Doubles:       $3385 

Additional costs:

Airport shuttle: $60 R/T

(info shared later)

Meals: Linda will share her favorites

in all price points.


  • 30 hours workshop with Susan

  • Seven nights accommodations

  • All taxes and hotel tips

  • Breakfast daily

  • Arrival dinner

  • Walking tour 

  •  Wine tasting/food pairing 

       + taxi excursion to  ​El Pavo Real Vineyard

  • Personal "viewcatcher" for drawing

  • Farewell Dinner

   Not Included

  • ​Airfare

  • Travel insurance

  • Meals

   (except where indicated)​

  • Airport shuttle


Please make your reservations to arrive at

Leon (BJX) or Queretaro(QRO) airports.* Information about easy and reliable shuttle service will be shared with participants. Please note, if you decide to fly into Mexico City, it is another four hours to San Miguel.

*Note: Please wait to make your flight arrangements until we inform you the retreat is full.

Reserve Your Room

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Please email Linda your choice of one King or two Doubles. You will then be asked to make a $500 deposit with Paypal or Zelle. All balances will be due by February 1, 2024

Cancellation Policy Please Review

All deposits and balances for workshops are non-refundable.  We understand that it is sometimes difficult to plan ahead for a trip such as this and these uncertain times have created a bit more challenge. We thank you for your understanding of the need for these policies on our end. We ask that retreat participants be vaccinated. Note: Mexico never closed its borders to travelers during 2020. 

Please read our full cancellation policy here.

Retreat Waiver

All participants will be asked to download and sign the waiver form and provide emergency contact info. Please email to:

Linda will provide all participants with a "Survival Guide" with lots of info about SMA, recommended restaurants and useful phone numbers.

About San Miguel de Allende

Mexico is a huge country that offers its visitors an amazing amount of diversity. San Miguel de Allende is located in the geographical center of the country and is said to be built upon a bed of crystal quartz. Many people believe this legend aids in the “magical” quality so often associated with this town. San Miguel is a peaceful, safe environment, full of friendly people, sophistication and charm to spare. It is small, but far from sleepy. The streets are always full of visitors and locals in a lively and festive atmosphere.

There is more than plenty to see and do on off hours during the retreat. Most days you can count on very cool mornings, warm to hot sunny afternoons, and slightly cooler evenings. Think layers and bring a light sweater. There is virtually no humidity. San Miguel is quite hilly in parts, and the streets are cobbled. You will most likely be doing a lot of walking (the best way to see the town!), so we suggest to bring good shoes.

We are at 6000 feet and if you have not been in high altitudes, you may feel a bit tired the first day or two. Luckily, there are numerous cafes, parks and plazas for rest and refreshments all over town. There are also ample and inexpensive cabs (and Uber) available should you need a break from the walking. The cab drivers, incidentally are some of the best locals to practice your Spanish with!

The web is full of articles and videos about San Miguel. Here are two to whet your whistle:

"The Best City in the World"

"San Miguel de Allende Travel Guide"

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About Linda Laino

Linda is an artist, writer and teacher who received her MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Va. She has lived in San Miguel de Allende for twelve years where she formally taught English Language Arts and continues to paint and write. She has organized writing and painting retreats of her own in San Miguel and is recently sharing her love and knowledge of this charming and colorful town with other artists and teachers. Her many pleasures in San Miguel include terrace cocktails with friends, hiking in the countryside and feeding the hummingbirds. Her painting and writing can be accessed here:

We look forward to welcoming you to San Miguel in March, 2024! Please do not hesitate to contact us. For questions about the workshop, please contact Susan at For questions about San Miguel, contact Linda at

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