Summer Sleuth: Balustrade

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The cantera columns stand like soldiers protecting the once elaborate cantera cherub water fountain.

Cantera stone is quarried from the different regions in Mexico. Cantera is a porous and lightweight volcanic stone that is easy to work with. The Schultz family is credited for accenting Quinta Mazatlán with cantera stone. After traveling to Mexico several times and admiring the cantera stone work of Don Luis De La Garza, the Schultz family hired him to do some stone work for them. Don Luis was the mason that created the front patio balustrade and most of the cantera stone work at Quinta Mazatlán. Truckloads of rough cut cantera stone blocks would be brought in from Mexico and dumped in the front yard. The mason and his apprentice would chisel each individual baluster. More than 60 balusters make the balustrade. Other cantera stone work was added throughout the home such as a water fountain, trimming around doors, terrace columns and fireplaces. The durable cantera stone balustrade has withstood the test of time. The balustrade has weathered beautifully and stands as a marvelous tribute to the grandeur of Quinta Mazatlán.

Upon purchasing Quinta Mazatlán, the city of McAllen made some cantera stone additions and modifications to the balustrade area. The modern craftsmanship discreetly blends in with the historic mason work.

Come visit Quinta Mazatlan and witness how this Spanish Colonial Revival home fits into our environment. With plenty of alfresco gathering spaces Quinta Mazatlan expresses a sense of relaxation and fosters a connection to nature and the surrounding environment.

Just like the cantera stone, Quinta Mazatlán is a solid historic fixture and has inconspicuously blended in with the modern city to create an urban sanctuary. Come out to Quinta Mazatlán and capture a picture of the “balustrade”. Post it on any of our Social Media and tag Quinta Mazatlán. Most creative photos will be highlighted by Quinta Mazatlán next week. Get to sleuthing….

Want to hear tales about the families that built and lived at Quinta Mazatlán for a total of 60 years before the City of McAllen purchased the estate and opened it in 2006 as a mansion with a mission? Call to schedule a private one-of-a-kind History Tour and discover how this massive structure was built from adobe and the secrets to its longevity.

Call us at 956-681-3370 for more information.

Cantera Stone Balusters 4

Mexican free-tailed bat

Bats

Mexican free-tailed bats hanging from their dark home!

The Mexican free-tailed bat is a medium sized bat. Their weight is between 0.4-0.5 oz and their wingspan is between 12-14 inches. Their fur is reddish to dark brown or gray in color. They have broad, black, forward pointing ears, and wrinkled lips. Their tails extend more than one third beyond the tail membranes. Their wings are long and narrow.

Mexican free-tails are found in the western United States, south through Mexico, Central America and into northern South America. Most of these bats migrate south to Central America and Mexico during the winter.

Mexican free-tails prefer to roost in caves, but will also choose attics, under bridges, or in abandoned buildings. They choose roosts near water. The water attracts the insects they eat, as well as allowing them the opportunity to drink.

Free-tail bats consume enormous amounts of moths and other insects. Some roosts are known to contain millions of bats. In those colonies it is estimated that 250 tons of insects can be consumed every night.

Snakes, raccoons, house cats, owls, and other predators sometimes manage to gain access to the roosts. If a baby falls to the cave floor the mother will not come to its rescue giving predators a chance for a quick meal.

A single free-tail baby bat is born during the summer. Young Mexican free-tailed bats roost separately from their mothers. Babies roost in the highest reaches of the cave, where temperatures are the warmest. The warm conditions are essential for rapid growth and survival. In the large maternity colonies of Mexican free-tails, the mother must find her own pup among the thousands. It is thought that she locates her baby by recognizing its individual call. These bats may have a life span of up to 18 years

Want to learn more about Mexican free-tailed bats or other native South Texas animals? Call to schedule a private one-of-a-kind outdoor Sculpture Trail Tour and develop an appreciation for the vast variety of creatures that call our region home. Each sculpture provides insight into the natural history of the Rio Grande Valley. At each turn of a trail, there’s a new creature to discover.

Call us at 956-681-3370 for more information.

Bats

Summer Sleuth: Talavera Tile

T Lady tortillaTo show their love of traveling Mexico’s exquisite and exotic destinations, Jason and Marcia Matthews brought Talavera tiles to dress up Quinta Mazatlan. The classical and traditional Talavera tiles are used in various arrangements throughout the mansion. The array of vibrant colors and picturesque scenes bring out the Spanish Colonial Revival theme both inside and outside of the mansion. The use of the tiles can be seen in the structural design of the archways, kitchen, bathrooms, window treatments, decorative wall accents and murals. The courtyard and cottage are highlighted with the proper placement of these unique and attractive tiles. Tiles with animals, plants, scenes of indigenous people’s daily lives and geometric designs are used T Palmthroughout the home and courtyard to compliment the architecture design.

Track down and photograph the Opossum Tile. Post it on any of our Social Media and tag Quinta Mazatlan. Most creative photos will be highlighted by Quinta Mazatlan next week. Get to sleuthing….

Come visit Quinta Mazatlan and witness how this Spanish Colonial Revival home fits into our environment. With plenty of alfresco gathering spaces Quinta Mazatlan expresses a sense of relaxation and fosters a connection to nature and the surrounding environment.

Want to hear tales about the families that built and lived at Quinta Mazatlán for a total of 60 years before the City of McAllen purchased the estate and opened it in 2006 as a mansion with a mission? Call to schedule a private one-of-a-kind History Tour and discover how this massive structure was built from adobe and the secrets to its longevity.

Call us at 956-681-3370 for more information.

T PosumT Childrens center tile

Blue Tile

Summer Sleuth: Leaving a Mark!

QM initials all2x

Marilyn Schultz and Karen Ann Schultz left their mark!

Work for a cause, not applause. Live life to express, not impress.

The Schultz family not only left their mark at Quinta Mazatlan, but also at various organizations around the city of McAllen. Frank and Marilyn Schultz were instrumental in the formation of the International Museum of Arts and Science. The Schultz family donated to the museum a set of Picasso’s Lithographs. Marilyn felt there needed to be an area in which all interested parties could get together and discuss what is best for the city of McAllen and surrounding areas to keep growing and developing, so the “Tower Club” was formed, located at the top of the now Chase Tower.

One solid mark left behind by the Schultz family can be seen at Quinta Mazatlan. It takes concrete a while to dry and cure. Many individuals cannot resist the temptation to scribble something into fresh concrete before dries. An old time tradition is to write initials and a date in fresh concrete to mark your existence. Often times it is the initials of an individual with the date inscribed in to the wet concrete. Quinta Mazatlan does not fall short of that ritual. Marilyn and her daughter Karen Ann Schultz, decided to leave their forever mark on the mansion. The initials “MS” and “KAS” are located in the study area with the time stamp date of “1968”. This indicates as the renovations were happening, Marilyn and Karen left their mark in stone. What a way to leave their mark at Quinta Mazatlan for all to witness 48 years later. The location of the initials are inconspicuous and hidden in plain sight.

Like the initials, Quinta Mazatlán continues to leave its mark as an urban sanctuary working to enrich people’s lives by sharing knowledge about birds, plants, and environmental stewardship in South Texas. Come out to Quinta Mazatlán and capture a picture of the “initials”. Post it on any of our Social Media and tag Quinta Mazatlán. Most creative photos will be highlighted by Quinta Mazatlán on Facebook and Instagram. Get to sleuthing….

Come visit Quinta Mazatlan and witness how this Spanish Colonial Revival home fits into our environment. With plenty of alfresco gathering spaces Quinta Mazatlan expresses a sense of relaxation and fosters a connection to nature and the surrounding environment.

Want to hear tales about the families that built and lived at Quinta Mazatlán for a total of 60 years before the City of McAllen purchased the estate and opened it in 2006 as a mansion with a mission? Call to schedule a private one-of-a-kind History Tour and discover how this massive structure was built from adobe and the secrets to its longevity.

Call us at 956-681-3370 for more information.

Summer Sleuth: Happy Birthday, Frank Schultz!

Frank

Happy Birthday, Frank Schultz!

Today marks the day that Frank Lewis Schultz was born on June 29, 1929. Some people touch our lives briefly, while others leave a lasting impression and are never forgotten.

Frank’s parents, Lew E. and Elizabeth Moffett Schultz were originally wheat farmers from Nebraska. In the late 1920s they moved to Alamo, Texas and purchased 20 acres of citrus groves to try their hand at the up incoming citrus industry. Frank with over 14,000 acres of citrus groves across the valley left a lasting impression within the citrus industry by carrying on his family tradition of hard work and integrity to compete within the citrus industry.

Frank Schultz’s lasting impression on the city of McAllen is Quinta Mazatlan. This urban sanctuary, a wing of the World Birding Center, has doubled its acreage for habitat, raised close to a million dollars for park improvements, built a LEED Certified Discovery Center, services over 10,000 school children annually and continues to grow its volunteer base with bringing in over 5,500 hours annually.

Quinta Mazatlan works at leaving an impression on people’s lives by sharing knowledge about its history, birds, plants, and environmental stewardship in South Texas.

On this special day, Quinta Mazatlan would like to thank Frank Schultz for leaving a lasting impression that will be appreciated always and never forgotten.

Come visit Quinta Mazatlan and witness how this Spanish Colonial Revival home fits into our environment. With plenty of alfresco gathering spaces Quinta Mazatlan expresses a sense of relaxation and fosters a connection to nature and the surrounding environment.

Want to hear tales about the families that built and lived at Quinta Mazatlán for a total of 60 years before the City of McAllen purchased the estate and opened it in 2006 as a mansion with a mission? Call to schedule a private one-of-a-kind History Tour and discover how this massive structure was built from adobe and the secrets to its longevity.

Call us at 956-681-3370 for more information.

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl 138

Great Horned Owl leaving the nest.

With its long, earlike tufts, intimidating yellow-eyed stare, and deep hooting voice, the Great Horned Owl is the quintessential owl of storybooks. This dominant predator can take down birds and mammals even larger than itself, but it also dines on smaller animals such as tiny scorpions, mice, and frogs. It’s one of the most common owls in North America, equally at home in deserts, wetlands, forests, grasslands, backyards, cities, and almost any other semi-open habitat between the Arctic and the tropics.

Great Horned Owls are large, thick-bodied with two prominent feathered tufts on the head. The wings are broad and rounded. In flight, the rounded head and short bill combine to create a blunt-headed silhouette. The colors of Great Horned Owls are mottled gray-brown, with reddish brown faces and a neat white patch on the throat. Their overall color tone varies regionally from sooty to pale. Great Horned Owls are nocturnal. You may see them at dusk sitting on fence posts or tree limbs at the edges of open areas, or flying across roads or fields with stiff, deep beats of their rounded wings. Their call is a deep, stuttering series of four to five hoots.

Want to learn more about Great Horned Owls or other native South Texas animals? Call to schedule a private one-of-a-kind outdoor Sculpture Trail Tour and develop an appreciation for the vast variety of creatures that call our region home. Each sculpture provides insight into the natural history of the Rio Grande Valley. At each turn of a trail, there’s a new creature to discover.

Call us at 956-681-3370 for more information.

Summer Sleuth: Paw Prints!

Dog Prints 3

This animal walked lightly on the tiles.

Good luck is another word for tenacity and purpose. Quinta Mazatlán’s tenacity and purpose can be witnessed in the Saltillo tile used throughout the home. The tiles durability and coolness was the ideal flooring choice for this 10,000 sq. ft. mansion. Saltillo tile is a soft hand-made tile from Saltillo Coahuila Mexico. It is made from native clays and formed into tile. The tiles have rustic imperfections, color variations, and size variations. It is during the sun drying stage of the process that birds, coyotes and other desert dwellers will leave their foot prints in the drying tiles. There is a tradition in the Southwest United States and Northern Mexico, near superstitious significance, that every floor laid with Saltillo tile must have a “protector” tile set within its boundaries for good luck.

Jason and Marcia Matthews installed Saltillo tile throughout the mansion. The tile is of a deep cinnamon-orange color with a two inch cement grout line to secure them. This flooring decision was ideal for the warm South Texas climate and a great accessory to the Spanish style of Quinta Mazatlan. The tile has been resilient and has withstood the test of time.

The second owners of Quinta Mazatlan, Frank and Marilyn Schultz, kept the same Saltillo tile flooring style during their renovation of the home. The newer tile color variations are shades of orange, yellow to peach colors. The sleek, natural beauty, non-toxic and cleanliness of the tiles made it an easy choice to continue using Saltillo tile.

“Luck happens when preparation meets opportunity.” – Elmer Leterman.

Like Saltillo Tile, Quinta Mazatlan has been particularly well regarded over the course of time. Is it cause of the “Paw Prints”? Time will tell. Visit Quinta Mazatlán and observe this Spanish Colonial Revival homes paw prints. Capture a picture of any of the “Paw Prints”. Post it on any of our Social Media and tag Quinta Mazatlán. Most creative photos will be highlighted by Quinta Mazatlán next week. Get to sleuthing….

Stop by Quinta Mazatlan and witness how this Spanish Colonial Revival home fits into our environment. With plenty of alfresco gathering spaces Quinta Mazatlan expresses a sense of relaxation and fosters a connection to nature and the surrounding environment.

Want to hear tales about the families that built and lived at Quinta Mazatlán for a total of 60 years before the City of McAllen purchased the estate and opened it in 2006 as a mansion with a mission? Call to schedule a private one-of-a-kind History Tour and discover how this massive structure was built from adobe and the secrets to its longevity.

Paw 1

Can you guess the animal that could have left their mark behind?