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Avenida Francisco Sosa, Coyoacán

The Avenida Francisco Sosa runs from Universidad Avenue to the street Tres Cruces in the center of Coyoacán. It’s one of the best-known and most famous streets in this part of Coyoacán. For many, the street is practically synonymous with the area.

The street dates from the 16th century. Over all these centuries, the name has changed many times. It was originally called the Calle Real, that is, the Royal Road leading to San Ángel.  It came to be known as Calle Santa Catarina for the most prominent parish in the area. Only in the 20th century was it renamed for Franscisco Sosa.

  • Francisco de Paula Sosa Escalante (1848-1925) was a poet, historian, biographer, and journalist. He was born in Campeche, and later studied law in the city of Mérida. At that time, his studies included philosophy and Latin, and he became acquainted with the most prominent writers of the time having published his own first volume of poetry at age 14. He was appointed director of the National Library in 1909 and was a member of Royal Academy of History, the Mexican Society of Geography and Statistics, and the Mexican Academy of History. In 1925, he died in Coyoacán where he’d resided for many years.

The street is today lined with giant mature ash trees that make it such a good strolling street. Near the beginning of the street, at the Avenida Universidad is the small San Antonio Panzacola chapel, replete in the lore of Pedro de Alvarado.

At number 383, is the famous National Sound Archive. Created in 2011, it’s a space for research, recording, and conservation Mexico’s recording, auditory, and musical heritage. The 18th-century building shows clear Andalusian and Moorish influence, and was legendarily the home of Pedro de Alvara. It was actually home to the American archaeologist Zelia Nuttall. After his death, it was used as the headquarters of the Encyclopedia Mexicana, then as an office of the Secretaría de Hacienda and later as a bookstore of the Department of Education.

A little further on, at number 363, is La Mano, a wonderful place for coffee, breakfast or lunch with a giftshop of artisan and designer goods. La Mano also organizes a variety of cultural events like movie nights, small concerts, and lectures.

At the corner of Calle de Carranza, enjoy a coffee at Cocoa and pass by the Casa de Cultura Jesús Reyes Heroles. The Casa hosts workshops, yoga, and ballet courses, and is home to a garden, and a traditional kitchen lined with Talavera Poblana (a beautiful ceramic). Its galleries also host frequent exhibitions.

Further on, the Italian Institute of Culture is operated by the Italian embassy in Mexico. Aside from being one of the oldest buildings on the Avenida Francisco Sosa, it also served as the Polish and Belgian embassies.

How to get here
  • Del Carmen/Santa Catarina, Coyoacán, 04010 CDMX

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