Located in the Colonia Juárez neighbourhood, just to the west of Mexico City’s historic centre, Zona Rosa is a lively shopping and nightlife destination. It has been an important hub for Mexico City’s gay community since the 1990s and is home to a large population of Koreans.
Paseo de la Reforma carves through Zona Rosa and exhibits some impressive historic architecture and grandiose monuments. The surrounding streets are packed full of retail clothing stores, fast food joints, restaurants and hotels, together with an antique mall on Londres Street and a handicraft market at Mercado Insurgentes. A few art galleries and bookstores remain from Zona Rosa’s bohemian era, while around 40 sculptures created by students from the Escuela Nacional de Artes Plasticas adorn the streets and cobblestone pedestrian zones. Genova Street is one of the main pedestrian-only malls in the district, lined with cafes which spill out onto the pavement, and it hosts the Corridor de Arte José Luis Cuevas on weekends when local artists showcase their work. There are a significant number of bars and nightclubs scattered throughout the district, with those catering to the well-established gay community clustered around Amberes Street. Paseo de la Reforma hosts a Gay Pride Day parade each year which attracts visitors from near and far and is considered one of Mexico’s most vibrant. Florencia Street has in recent years become a hub for the Korean community, with the area dubbed “Pequeño Seul”, or Little Seoul, for its Korean restaurants and barber shops.
Zona Rosa is easily accessed along Subway Line 1, with Insurgentes Station opening out into its main plaza at Glorieta de Insurgentes. From here it’s just a short walk to most of the sights and shopping strips, or there are public buses available throughout the area.
Zona Rosa was first established as a residential district for wealthy foreigners prior to the Mexican Revolution, with many of its streets named after European capital cities. Artists and intellectuals flocked here in the 1950s and 60s when it was renowned as a bohemian hub and earned its name Zona Rosa or “pink zone”, considered too tame to be “red” before it became a major tourism centre during the 1980s.