Casa Figueroa – Taxco, Mexico - Atlas Obscura

Casa Figueroa

This "cursed house" features secret rooms, hidden vaults, and dark escape tunnels. 


In 1943, the artist Fidel Figueroa bought a house known by the people of Taxco as the “House of Tears” because of the sad events that occurred inside. When remodeling the storied house, Figueroa discovered a series of architectural oddities hidden within. Ever since, he has displayed the building’s secrets to curious visitors. 

The house was built by enslaved members of the Tlahuica tribe for the Count of Cadena. If a war broke out, the count could use the secret rooms and tunnels for refuge. The house also features hidden vaults, where both people and objects could be stashed away. 

The kitchen sits atop one vault, and in a bedroom, a removable brick in the wall reveals a space to secure items such as important paper and jewels. The cistern in the courtyard doubles as an escape tunnel, and the house also features a panic room.

The house has lived up to its name. It’s said one of its early owners killed his daughter to prevent her from marrying the man she loved. Toward the end of the 19th century, a woman named Doña Bacilisa was killed in the home by thieves. There are also tales of women suffocating in the panic room while hiding during the Mexican Revolution, adding to the building’s tragic history and fueling rumors that the site is cursed.

Figueroa never lived in the house, using it instead as his gallery and a museum. Foreign tourists traveling from Mexico City to Acapulco frequented the house. Inside, you’ll find photos of famous past visitors, including Linda Darnell, Elvis Presley, and Jack Palance. After Figueroa’s death, the museum was closed for 20 years. It reopened in 2013.

Know Before You Go

The house is open Wednesday to Monday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. General admission is $30 pesos, and $20 pesos for students, teachers, and seniors with valid credentials.

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January 6, 2020

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