Last Thursday when I went downtown, I was at first a little confused. By the Alameda Park there was a Mexicráneo, one of those large fiberglass skulls that are hand painted by artists and which are displayed each year for the Day of the Dead. What was it doing here in April, and why was it decorated with live flowers?
My question was answered when I arrived at nearby Madero Street, the pedestrian street in the heart of the Historic Center. An archway of colorful (fake) flowers announced the Second Festival of Flowers of the Historic Center. That day was the opening day, and it was going to run through the weekend.
A number of businesses had decorated the entrances or facades of their stores with flowers, live or artificial. However, the floral displays were few and far between, and I had to walk up and down the streets of the Historic Center to find them. It was not nearly as impressive as the Festival of Flowers which I saw last October in the swank neighborhood of Polanco. There, nearly every store along Avenida Masaryk, the “Rodeo Drive of Mexico City”, was impressively decorated with flowers.
The majority of the displays for this downtown festival were along Madero Street.
The House of Tiles, the former colonial mansion that is now the flagship store / restaurant of the Sanborns chain decked the upper balconies with flowers.
At the corner of Madero and Gante, another pedestrian street, a cafe had a fairly impressive display.
Estudio Madero, a photography studio, had a picture of flowers, sitting on an easel.
A floral archway at a branch of Bisquets de Obregón, a restaurant chain.
If the festival gave awards, I think that first place would have to go to Pasaje Pimental, a shopping arcade in a former colonial palace.
Cuidado Con El Perro (Beware of the Dog), a chain of clothing stores, had some artificial flowers around its sign.
There was a flower display at the entrance to Trender, another clothing chain.
One of the many opticians along Madero Street was decorated and had a flowery pair of spectacles hanging at the entrance.
I found a few more places on Avenida 5 de Mayo, one block to the north. El Caifán, a chain of taco joints, was decorated.
Next door, Districto Urbano, a restaurant / beer bar, was decorated.
Across the street, Mercaderes, an upscale restaurant, had flowery ladybugs crawling up the facade and along the balcony.
Behind the Cathedral, there was a store that sells religious goods, that got into the spirit of the festival.
There were probably some other displays that I missed, but that was all I saw. After walking up and down four of the major streets in the Historic Center, I was tired and ready to head back to the apartment.