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Plaza Zapamundi

The Plaza Zapamundi is one of the oldest enclosed shopping centers in Mexico City. It opened along with the new extra wide Canal de Miramontes, in the mid-1970s. The canal was intubated some 10 years previous. The shopping center has maintained a roster of some 100 merchants ever since. The big ones are a Soriana supermarket, Sanborns, and both Pet Depot and Office Depot. You’ll want to pronounce both final Ts in Spanish.

Zapamundi, the name, is just a mash of the words shoe (zapato) and world (mundo). The plaza likely opened with a preponderance of footwear merchants.

Just a few minutes from the famous, and rather under-visited Coyotes Zoo, the plaza offers inside strolling, and a small food court. Visitos also find smaller boutiques and shops with a few independents peppered in there.

With ample outside parking, visitors are forgiven for thinking it’s something of a trip into a suburban past. But Zapamundi has soldiered on. The complex has probably been somewhat complicit in the area’s reputation for traffic snarls and general suburban malaise. Still, the franchise food may provide welcome relief for travelers who’ve had too much exotic and “interesting” food. That’s a serious concern for more travelers than you might think.

The Galerías Coapa later came to redefine much of the overall Coapa area. That was in a bolder, even more retail-focused era. But the precedent had been set, a decade earlier, at the Plaza Zapamundi. Today, it’s a classic in its genre, and one that’s almost lost to the passage of time.

 

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