Mexico City: Insider’s guide

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mexico City: Insider’s guide

  Image: Adam Wiseman

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Mad, bad, but not necessarily dangerous to know, Mexico City is filled with up-and-coming enclaves, contemporary restaurants and creative young people reinventing the culture.

Always in the top three of the most populated cities in the world (there are more than 21 million residents), Mexico City is splintered into a mind-boggling number of neighbourhoods, each of them with very distinct personalities, colours and experiences to offer.

Polanco and Pedregal, for example, are at the forefront of luxury design and retail, high-end cuisine, and innovative commercial architecture (Antara Polanco seems to encompass all of those). San Angel and Centro Histórico are peppered with elements of what the city’s 680 years of history have left behind: religious architecture, tribal influences, Spanish, French and Middle Eastern detailing and ingredients, and much, much more.

Neighbourhoods like La Condesa and La Roma are home to young, cutting-edge design, and multicultural cuisine and nightlife (with a backdrop of art deco, and post-colonial architecture). The area has attracted young creatives from all walks of life to settle and set up studios there. Great places to stay nearby include The Red Tree House (the penthouse is worth every peso), Condesa DF or the Hippodrome.

One thing you are sure to find everywhere in the city is astonishing food. Fresh and varied produce abounds in Mexico City, and the influence of regional traditions, mixed with years of immigrations make local delicacies nothing like you’ve come to expect from traditional overseas Mexican joints. Pujol or Dulce Patria are great places to redefine one’s perception of the country’s cuisine. Worth experiencing is Paseo de la Reforma on a Sunday morning as it is reserved for pedestrians. One can start the trek in the southern Chapultepec Park (a forest housing impressive galleries, a lake, live music and even an impressive hilltop castle from which French envoys once tried to rule the country) and head towards the touristy Centro Historico and the Museo Nacional de Culturas Populares, a spot that no enthusiast of good, regional craft and design can pass up.

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