Friday, February 12, 2010

The Avenida de la Reforma and Surroundings

 Photo by galasdeguatemala.com, used with authorization.
Since we are still in Zone 9, I am going to go just a little bit to the east right to the Avenida de la Reforma (literally: Avenue of the Reformation), which separates Zone 9 from Zone 10. This is a wide and beautiful boulevard built in 1897, inspired by the Champs Elysees in Paris. Adorned with many monuments, this avenue is considered part of the national heritage due to its artistic and historical value.
The avenue runs from North to South as Zone 9, and in the opposite direction as Zone 10. On both sides, we are going to see large buildings some historic and some others contemporary, including the USA Embassy and Consulate, a few gorgeous residences,  plenty of restaurants, and some of the finest hotels in the city. Right in the middle, we can admire beautiful gardens and several monuments, including the one built by the sculptor Max Leiva in year 2,000 dedicated to Miguel Angel Asturias, the Literature Nobel laureate I mentioned in the Civic Center post.
Passing by the Avenida de la Reforma without exploring the surroundings would be a shame. So please, stay with me. I can assure you, we will enjoy the visit and the first place we are going to, is the Botanical Garden, which contains many local plants and flowers as well as some exotic specimens. It was the first of its kind in Central America.
Our second stop is the Ixchel Museum of Indigineous Dress, which "was founded to address the need to rescue indigenous culture within a society that was rapidly modernizing, often losing its traditions and identity. The museum's work encompasses the acquisition, conservation   and exhibition of indigenous clothing as well as extensive research   and publication of findings." The first link in this paragraph will take you to the official Website where you will find very well documented information about the Guatemalan Maya textile tradition from pre-Colombian times to the present.
Detail of the Huipil I am using as the background for the title of this blog.
Do you remember I already told you this is one of my favorite places in the city? Well, it is. Not just for the textiles that I adore and have a few, but also for the extraordinary collection of paintings by Andres Curruchich. "His works portray the daily life of his town, San Juan Comalapa (Chimaltenango), through scenes such as the harvesting of corn, the cutting of hair, the washing of clothes and the activities of the market square, as well as local traditions such as Holy Week processions, dances, celebrations in honor of San Juan, the patron saint of the town. The figures that appear in his paintings, except for the traders from other communities, are of special interest, since they show the distinctive dress of Comalapa."
Photo by galasdeguatemala.com, used with authorization. This link will take you to more San Juan Comalapa photographs, perfect to illustrate the artistic legacy of Painter Andres Curruchich.
Even though I would like to continue describing this part of the city, I think it is enough for today and for the week. My last recommendation for now is: go out and enjoy a wonderful meal and if you like the night life, in Zona Viva (zone 10) you will find a wide variety of restaurants, night clubs, cafes, and many more. I would go to Hacienda Real for one of the most tasty, juicy, and tender steaks I have ever tried and a glass of red wine. Enjoy your weekend!

3 comments:

  1. Congratulations Dear Erin. The blog is better and better everyday. Keep writing, I am enjoying the Journey! Marcelo.

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  2. SRITA. DELON-AHUMADA, ME SIENTO MUY ORGULLOZO DE VER QUE HAY CHAPINES CON MUCHO TALENTO Y CON MUCHO AMOR A GUATELINDA, SOY RESIDENTE DE PATERSON NUEVA JERSEY USA Y CON EL POCO INGLES QUE SE ME HA GUSTADO SU PAGINA PROMOCIONANDO A NUESTRA TIERRA DEL QUETZAL. SIGA TRIUNFANDO Y MUCHAS BENDICIONES.
    MARCO LEIVA DE LEON

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  3. Estimado Marco: Agradezco su comentario y bendiciones. Como usted también vive lejos de nuestra tierra, se que entiende muy bien esta nostalgia y el deseo de contribuir aunque sea un poquito en dar a conocer nuestro país de una forma positiva. Espero que siga practicando su Inglés.
    Gracias de nuevo y un fuerte abrazo!

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