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CREA Furniture Market: Mercado de Artesanías Vasco de Quiroga

Photo: Krystalms11 on Wikimedia Commons

The CREA Furniture Market is on the edge of the Bosque de Tlalpan, and conveniently along a stretch of Insurgentes Sur. Inconveniently, it’s officially called the Mercado de muebles Vasco de Quiroga but everyone calls it the “Mercado Crea” or the “Tianguis de CREA.” “CREA” was a public arts and crafts program in the 1980s that, here, began making furniture so good that it soon left the program entirely and the name stuck.

Now, for international visitors, you may think you’re not in the market for furniture. It’s too big and difficult to ship and these are understandable concerns. But like any big furniture retailer, the 134 (or so) vendors within the market know that they can do just as well dealing in smaller items, decorative crafts, and artisan works.

It’s an eyeful. And for anyone with an interest in woodworking, interior design and decorating, and in crafts in general is in for a major treat. Mexico City’s home decor market can be divided easily this way:

Home Decor in Mexico City

  1. Crea Market – where everything is new and much is handmade.
  2. Portales Market – the used furniture market, of which much began at Crea.
  3. La Lagunilla Market(s) – where the City’s dealers in the oldest (and most expensive) antiquities have been for generations. These shops compete only with the fine furniture dealers in the west of the city, along Altavista (just north of San Ángel), and in the Polanco, Las Lomas, and Santa Fe neighborhoods.

The Crea Market is for everyone else. Those without a ton of money get super-high-quality furniture and a lot more for seriously rock bottom prices. Don’t be put off by the flashiest and first things you see. There are real works of art in there. Like any good art, it’ll start showing you more and more as you and your eyes get acclimated.

The market just a short walk from the entrance to the Bosque de Tlalpan, and the Casa de la Cultura de Tlalpan which hosts, on Sundays, the Tlalpan Alternative Market. While it makes for a great Sunday, the furniture market is open daily.

Hours: Daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Vasco de Quiroga (1470-78–1565) was a lawyer and judge from Madrigal de las Altas Torres, Castile, in today's Spain. He was appointed by the Spanish crown to serve on the Second Audiencia, the early governing body in what would become New Spain. He did so from 1531 until April of 1535. In Mexico City, he's likely most famous for setting up a hospital and town in today's Pueblo de Santa Fe. He's arguably more famous for work he did thereafter in Michoacán, the state to the West of Mexico City. Santa Fe became a sort of working model to be repeated in numerous small indigenous towns there where Vasco de Quiroga created many of his so-called "Indian Republics." These were generally centered around a hospital complex. Each town then focused on a trade or craft and these were intended to support emerging Christian values that Vasco de Quiroga based on principles he'd studied in Thomas More's Utopia, only then newly published. Some of those same towns are still focused on their individual craft-industries even to this day. Vasco de Quiroga eventually became the first Bishop of Michoacan, although he'd never been ordained a priest. He's still recognized by the Church for his contribution to the protection of the Indigenous peoples of Mexico.

How to get here
  • Insurgentes Sur (esq. Camino a Santa Teresa), Col. Miguel Hidalgo, Alc. Tlalpan 14020 CDMX


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