Sunday, November 9, 2008


Saturdays bring the Bazar Sábado to the neighborhood of San Ángel, situated in the southwest of the D.F. Local artists set up rows of canvases throughout Plaza Carmen, craft vendors take over the streets and pathways surrounding Plazas San Jacinto and Tenanitla, and upscale jewelry and ceramics make for a visual feast inside the bazar building fronting the plaza on Calle Juárez. It's a shopper's paradise.

But exercising your credit card isn't the only reason to make a trip to San Ángel. Once you reach the Iglesia San Jacinto on the western side of the plaza, set behind a maze of pastel-hued walls and flanked by an oasis of garden calm, the calls of the vendors and car horns of busy Avendia Revolución dematerialize. Before you even realize it, you're transported to another era.

Colonially elegant mansions, blooming bougainvillea cascading over their brightly painted walls, line narrow streets of cobblestone. Far away are the hubcap shops, the jugo y licuado stands, the corner lavanderías, the exhaust perfume of Mexico City proper. In fact, aside from the occasional Mercedes quietly rumbling over the rugged stones, little exists here to persuade you that this secluded village has changed at all from time it was founded by the Dominicans in the 16th century.

Throw in a meal at Crêperie du Soleil and a half hour browsing around the Museo Casa Estudio Diego Rivera y Frida Kahlo, where Rivera's festively decorated studio is on display, and a visit to San Ángel is the ideal Saturday getaway from the megametropolis.


Anonymous said...

Hi Hal:

I visited Frida Kahlo's house back in the early 80s with a colleague who was big fan and I didn't even know anything about Kahlo! What a difference several years can make but the impression that the house made on me has lasted a long time. I would love to go back and revisit one of these days.


hal said...

Glad I was able to bring back some memories, Marcella! I plan to visit Frida's "Blue House" in Coyoacán as a supplement to this in the next week or so. Stay tuned!