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09.04.2009

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Colonia Roma
Images of Colonia Roma / Zones of Mexico City

 

The houses and buildings of the Roma area are full of elegant Art Nouveau style details; these buildings take us back to the times of splendor of the Porfirian era, creating visions of ladies walking by in their elegant dresses and ostentatious hats.

The Roma area was originated in the colonial era with the establishment of the Romita Hacienda, place in which a small chapel surrounded by narrow alleyways and a beautiful little plaza at its entrance can still be found. The area started to develop, in the time of Porfirio Diaz, when the land was divided; it took its name from the Hacienda. Around that time, the growing middle and high-class population started to leave the centre of the city, creating different areas (or districts) around it, which are called “Colonias”, name taken from the first European populations in America because these areas were planned from the beginning and followed the Western urban principles.  

With the passing years, some rich families began to build their great French-styled mansions in the area, examples of which remain to this day, like the Lamm House (today an important cultural centre), the Rio de Janeiro building, the Balmori apartments, and endless beautiful buildings that have been declared cultural heritage by the National Institute of Fine Arts.

Apart from the buildings mentioned before, the characteristic thing about the Roma area are its beautiful streets, like Alvaro Obregon Avenue with its extensive boulevard surrounded by high ash trees and which holds in the middle fountains and classic sculptures; Orizaba Street, where the Temple of the Sacred Family is located, communicates two beautiful parks with fountains. One of the only two exact bronze replicas of Michelangelo’s David can be found in Rio de Janeiro Plaza, which also holds sculpture exhibits and the best of contemporary art.  

The area is experiencing a regeneration that is slowly recovering the old buildings, conserving its architectural characteristics, but giving them a new function as apartments, coffee houses, galleries and shops specialized in design and fashion.

 Places of interest in this area:

 

 

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