Mexico Design Fair Offers a Fresh Take on Design Weeks

The 2024 exhibit featured contemporary designers from both Mexico and abroad.

Mexico Design Fair

When it comes to design, context matters. The right surroundings can help us appreciate design, inspire meaningful conversations, and ultimately offer a vision of how design and the environment can interact. This ethos is echoed at the Mexico Design Fair, a young design fair set in awe-inspiring surroundings. In its fourth edition, the fair offers an intimate look at contemporary Mexican and international design against the backdrop of Oaxaca’s spectacular coastline in Puerto Escondido.

Many design fairs take place at convention halls in major cities, but Mexico Design Fair has intentionally chosen a different approach. The exhibition is hosted at Casa Naila, a contemporary property designed by Alfonso Quiñones of BAAQ’ Architects that sits at the edge of the beach. Showcasing furniture, textiles, accessories, and more, Casa Naila serves as a beautiful setting to discover design—the wood slat cladding brings an interplay of light and shadow onto the pieces, while the ocean is constantly mesmerizing.




Beyond standing apart from larger design fairs for its architecturally significant location, Mexico Design Fair is also an intimate size. A deliberately small group allows for ample opportunities for conversations between designers and collectors about processes, inspirations, and more.

“What makes MDF unique, beyond the architectural settings and the paradisiac context of the Mexican Pacific Coast, is the interaction that happens between all the valuable people involved,” explains Mexico Design Fair founder and curator Carlos Torre Hütt. “I was interested in keeping the guest list short so that the collector, the gallery owner, or the journalist could reach deep conversations around the activities programmed for the weekend.”

The 2024 exhibit featured contemporary designers from both Mexico and farther afield. Walking into Casa Naila, a burst of colour was on display in the installation of playful benches and stools from Oaxaca-based Australian designer Jaime Levin. An interactive exhibit, his Banquitos were later brought onto the beach to be used as seating for a pyrotechnics installation from audiovisual artist David Sánchez.


Photography by Jaime Navarro


Farther into the rooms of Casa Naila, Fernando Laposse’s Pup Benches were on display, covered with long sisal fibres harvested from agave plants—as well as a grouping of geometric panels created from the husks of heirloom corn. Laposse was also the recipient of the fair’s 2024 Designer of the Year award, with his innovative work speaking to the connections between agriculture and art.

Other exhibits included handcrafted glassware from Oaxaca-based Xaquixe, created primarily from recycled materials and using alternative energy sources, as well as graphic rugs from Odabashian created in collaboration with artists Little Wing Lee and Pilar Zeta. Other highlights were industrial sandblasted stainless-steel pieces from Álbum’s inaugural collection, alongside two artfully crafted hickory cabinets from Estudio Claudina Flores.


Mexico Design Week


Mexico Design Week


Torre Hütt has strategically situated Mexico Design Fair in Puerto Escondido, which may appear at first glance to be mainly a surf town but has also established itself as a hub for contemporary art and design. An abundance of architecturally significant structures is spread out along the coastline, allowing for design-hopping from one destination to the next.



“During the MDF experience, we wanted to point out how architecture in the Pacific Coast has been creating a contemporary and design rich discourse,” Torre Hütt explains. While the fair’s exhibits centre around Casa Naila, guests also visit other architectural spots along the coast, such as Taller Alberto Calleja’s Casa Malandra, where the group congregated for the ignition of a sculptural basalt oven from Mexican artist Julio Martínez Barnetche.



Nearby, contemporary boutique hotel Hotel Escondido was the beachfront setting for a long-table group dinner, another moment intended for further connections and conversations. Other design-focused destinations are only minutes away, including Casa Wabi, an arts foundation created by Mexican artist Bosco Sodi and designed by Japanese architect Tadao Ando.

Context is not an afterthought at Mexico Design Fair but instead a deeply considered element that stands alongside each piece displayed. The intimate size and exceptional surroundings create the space to naturally uncover the stories behind each piece—allowing for an even deeper appreciation of design and its potential.