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Centro Cultural Bella Época

Photos: Xanyssel, Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International 

The Centro Cultural Bella Época is one of the major landmarks within the Condesa neighborhood. But that said, many long time residents don’t think of it as anything other than as a giant bookstore. It is that too.

But the Bella Época occupies the old Cine Lido. It was designed by the famous Charles Lee who’d also designed the Cine Lindavista, only slowly being converted to the San Juan Diego Sanctuary. The cinema opened here in 1942. It operated as the Cine Lido until the 1970s when the name was changed. It struggled on. But the site only really became a cultural center for the Fondo Cultura Economica, a government run publishing house, in the early 2000s.  Since then, it’s well regarded, but not often understood as one of the most successful mover-theater conversions in Mexico City history.

The bookstore itself is named in honor of Rosario Castellanos. She was one of the most important 20th-century writers, a pioneer of feminism, and a diplomat.
But the cultural center also houses an enormous reading area for kids, a café, screening room, and an important gallery and exhibition area. All of it was re-designed and retro-fitted by Teodoro González de León. He was able to preserve much of the original Art Deco design. The lighted glass ceiling is by Dutch artist Jan Hendrix.
Hours: Daily 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
How to get here


Santa Rosa de Lima Church, Condesa

Nearest at 0.13 kms.

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