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Zona Rosa

Some claim the Zona Rosa (“Pink Zone”) is named after the pink buildings that once lined its streets. Others credit Mexican artist José Luis Cuevas for the title, claiming he saw the area as “white” during the day but “red” at night. While there is undoubtedly some truth in the tales, they have become an inseparable knot of historical fact and fiction.

Trendy once upon a time, this grimy entertainment district used to be an attractive locale for tourists and young Mexicans. These days, the Zona Rosa has lost most of its appeal to the ritzy neighborhood of Polanco and the bohemian paradise known as Condesa.

Despite its drop in status, the Zona Rosa is still worth a visit. Roughly marked by Paseo de la Reforma, Avenida Insurgentes and Sevilla, its central location and proximity to two major landmarks (El Ángel de la Independencia and La Fuente de la Diana Cazadora) means you’d need an excuse not to go. Even without hopping into a taxi, the Zone is still easily accessible by subway (Metro Insurgentes), Metrobús (Insurgentes or Hamburgo) or the many minibuses (peseros) that run along Reforma.

The Zona Rosa has many bars, clubs (dance and strip), international restaurants, internet cafés, casas de cambio, book stores, boutique shops and a recently constructed multilevel, shopping center. And even though Mexico City is supposedly cosmopolitan, the Zona Rosa is one of the few places where it’s common to see gay and lesbian couples displaying affection openly.

A trip to the Zona Rosa means you will come across street vendors looking to collect on their handicrafts, as well as club promoters trying to reel you into their spot for the night. But the ones on the street are nothing compared to the merchants in Mercado Insurgentes – a labyrinth of stalls selling silver jewelry and souvenirs. Here, you, plus a high concentration of competition, equals pushy vendors.


Other neighborhoods in Mexico City: Calzada De Tlalpan, Condesa, San Ángel , South Of The Center, Zócalo, La Alameda Central, North Of The Center, Roma and Polanco.

By Alison Isaac
Alison Isaac is a writer, reader and pan-Caribbean Capoeirista from Toronto. Alison believes in ghosts, good music and the everlasting life of...
09 Dec 2008

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