La Antigua Guatemala, at 5,000 feet of altitude and ringed by three volcanoes, is a one-mile square, cobblestoned city that was once the capital of New Spain. Founded in 1543, it was the rich jewel of the Spanish crown for more than two centuries, but its baroque colonial architecture was partly destroyed in 1773 by an earthquake. Its lovely location and impressive ruins make it a city unique in Latin America and a “must see” destination for its many visitors. UNESCO designated it a World Heritage Site in 1979, and Antigua today combines history, beauty, and modern amenities.
Guatemala’s majority indigenous groups, joined by descendants of colonial Spaniards (ladinos) and European and US immigrants, form a cultural mix with many opportunities for crosscultural learning. The country is home to millions of indigenous descendants of the ancient Mayan culture. Their artistic and community traditions delight visitors to Antigua and the surrounding highlands.. Antigua is known worldwide for its language schools, and especially for the use of the Spanish immersion method, pioneered by the Proyecto Lingüístico Francisco Marroquín (PLFM).
To arrive in Antigua students fly into Guatemala City, 45 minutes from Antigua. PLFM offers airport pickup for a reasonable fee.
The school is located quite near La Merced Church, only a short walk from the famous Arch and a few blocks from the central park square. The grounds of the school are spacious, well cared for, and one side of the wall is the ruin of a colonial structure. There are individual, open air cubicles where classes are held, as well as tables in the garden. There is Wi-Fi availability and computers for student use. Complimentary coffee, tea and purified water are served throughout the day. It is a lovely place to spend your day, although you can always take your private teacher with you and have your class on the move through the streets of charming Antigua.